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Old 01 Mar 12, 09:53
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El.Cid El.Cid is offline
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Real Name: Lord Shardik
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: copenhagen
Posts: 360
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War gaming

As a gamedesigner myself, I feel that the 'art' is to make games more logical instead of complex. I personally despise games where they offer alot of 'reality' at a cost of alot of 'complexity'. This is the reason why I'm not a wargamer. It is not worth it. I like to read the rulebook once and then get on with the game. Not read it sixteen times before being able to play it from start to finish for the first time. Usually that 'in between' reality vs complexity is the right way to go IMO.
Earlier someone mentioned that chess was a no-brainer game, but this I don't understand: chess IMO is a game where alot of brainwork is needed - and I enjoy playing it. I like playing Stratego (I made mine more interesting!) especially with my sons. RISK is just plain awful . It prompted me to create my own game 'Victory & Defeat' back in 1997.

I assume you are a 'die hard' wargamer El Cid?
Give me some suggestions on some good wargames...I'm still looking for a good one with a good balance between complexity-reality.
Well, yes I am a die hard. I just do not get the opportunity to play anymore. Family takes priority and the wife. I agree, there have been many war games that just get to carried away with details. The most important thing is to ask yourself is why do you want to play this type of game?
I started with Chess, but I wanted more. Chess is the best strategic level game. Maybe Diplomacy is also. No luck and all skill. But then there is no terrain affects, the pieces are too generic. Rooks, bishops, queen, armies and navies meant little.
At the same time, I love history, and nothing is more fasinating then military history. So to study history, to see how events happened the way they did, wargames is a great tool. Depending on the level, the wargame is your best way to study a period of time or a specific event. And the wargame gives you the chance to see why and how a particular strategy or tactic was used. In a multi-player game, you can compare your skills against others.
Good wargames that keep the complexity low, but still retain historical value and reality are not many. You can have simple with high playability, but these usually do not give you reality nor much more challenge then Stratego. It also depends on the period of time you are interested and the scale.
Diplomacy/Machievelli - simple grand strategy to strategic level multi-player games. I do not like either as a single bad move by any player close to you can have devastating effects on your outcome. No luck and all skill. These are kind of like a survivor game. You need to be a great communicator, all the while sticking it to them, and having them say thank you.
Napoleon's Last Battles - Operational level to tactical. Yes the Waterloo campaign. The campaign game is one of my favorites. Not too many rules. The key is the command and control. You get the value of why Napoleon was at his level, and other were not even close. Even though there are 3 types of units, infantry, cavalry (fast moving infantry), and artillery (long range infantry), one still gets the idea of combined arms tactics.
If you are interested in ancient times, Roman or preRoman, I can not really tell you very much. I had an old grand strategic game called Imperium Romanum. But I think maybe it is a little more complex then you are looking.
Maybe one of the most fun 2 player wargame that I remember was a game called Kriegspiel. A generic red against blue, on a generic hexigonal map. It was a modern warfare conflict, strategic level. Simplified and good. Maybe a little more complex then you want, but a good game to see the complexity of a modern conflict.
I digress, this is the Napoleonic boardgaming thread. Honestly, the Napoleonic period represents a huge change in tactics and strategy from previous periods. Complexity greatly changed and any decent Napoleonic game will reflect this increase in complexity. Not only to the tactical level, but also to the Operational and the Strategic levels too.
I would tell you that what you are seeking is not in a wargame because warfare in any period of time was a complex affair. Either coordinating the activities of land, sea, and air of a modern conflict, or co-ordinating the activities of forces on a battlefield or on a front is still complicated. Any wargame that does not give you some amount of complexity is not worth the price you pay.
Stick to Stratego, Chess, Axis and Allies (Advanced risk) or one of the generic alternatives (Shogun, etc). You get neat little toy soldiers with which to play.
Just curious, why is a non wargamer, chatting on this wargame site (the Napoleonic period was a period of warfare and anything else is a joke), and more specifically on a Napoleonic boardgame. Feel free to email me personally if you want suggestions on old games. I was had a huge collection and with our club, we had several hundred.
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