Butt-Ugly Wargame Maps -- Extra Points for Ugly Counters
Mike Windsor
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Fort Worth
Texas
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Wargamers are known for basic maps and counters, but some maps are ugly even by wargame standards. The maps on this list may be accurate, but they must be ugly. If you can find ugly counters to go with an ugly map, you get extra credit. Most of these games are pretty good games (some are even revered), so this list is meant as a bit of fun, and not as a shot at the game designers or producers.
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26. Board Game: Piercing the Reich [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:6167]
Nevin Ball
United States
Dallas
Texas
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The map in this game is so damn ugly that noone has dared submit it on the Geek. I understand that Moments in History redid the map and offered it for sale for those wanting to replace the butt-ugly Beth Queman map.
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27. Board Game: Air Assault On Crete/Invasion of Malta: 1942 [Average Rating:6.30 Overall Rank:2990]
 
Nevin Ball
United States
Dallas
Texas
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Contender for the ugliest Avalon Hill map ever.
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28. Board Game: Rome at War II: Fading Legions [Average Rating:6.10 Overall Rank:6312]
Jens Hoppe
Denmark
Frederiksberg
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If you're an ancients guy, Avalanche's Fading Legions takes the cake.
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29. Board Game: Tito [Average Rating:5.58 Overall Rank:9261]
Johan Pettersson
Sweden
Smygehamn
Skåne
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Tito hadn't one of the nicest maps either. I realy turned me off for playing the game

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30. Board Game: War of the States: Chickamauga & Chattanooga [Average Rating:5.50 Overall Rank:8910]
Patrick Donohue
France
Gradignan
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This is the worst map I possess. Spaghetti like roads that you hardly can tell apart from area boundary. Not only ugly but in my opinion dysfonctionnal...
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31. Board Game: Cactus Throne: The Mexican War of 1862-1867 [Average Rating:5.91 Overall Rank:8436]
Sam hudson
United States
Portage
Michigan
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Had and still have a great interset in the topic. I saw the counters/map and said "no thanks". Actually I haven't bought any of their games for the same reason. I appreciate the effort put into being graphically different but either boring or "over the top" doesn't make sense. Come onangry this was an opportunity to really shine. The only way you can tell different nationalities (of which there were many) is by reading the counters. DRAB & DULL doesn't sell!!!
 
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32. Board Game: Sniper! (first edition) [Average Rating:6.20 Overall Rank:4077]
Alexius Exfalso
United Kingdom
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This one came immediately to mind...

Flatworld with the colour scheme from a tart's boudoir.

Nice.
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33. Board Game: Rommel & Tunisia [Average Rating:6.56 Unranked]
Eric Feifer
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
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Didn't this one have an orange map?
 
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34. Board Game: Civilization [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:138]
United States
Vista
California
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A lot of people I know find the pink bordered, busy busy Civilization map to be kind of ugly.
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35. Board Game: Manchu [Average Rating:5.84 Overall Rank:7931]
Randall Monk
United States
Leesburg
Virginia
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Nice try with your somewhat ugly maps, everyone, but there is just one ugliest wargame map in the world, and it comes from Manchu. And lots of extra points for hideous counters.
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36. Board Game: Tet Offensive [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:7691]
Joel Toppen
United States
Gallup
New Mexico
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I'm surprised this didn't make the list. A great game, but my goodness, what possessed GDW to produce this gaudy mess of a map?

I'd like to play this one again, but sitting on the table next to "HERE I STAND"... it's an abomination.
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37. Board Game: EastFront [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:792]
Mike Windsor
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Fort Worth
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Uh, what is that thing on the edge of the map? I have a few ideas, but they are not post-able, even with the rough crowd of non-Eurogamers who are reading this list. My version of Eastfront 2 does NOT have it.
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38. Board Game: Victory in the Pacific [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:875]
Lehr
United States
California
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One of my all time favorite games, but the map is really quite ugly.
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39. Board Game: Tobruk: Tank Battles in North Africa 1942 [Average Rating:6.34 Overall Rank:2807]
J.L. Robert
United States
Sherman Oaks
California
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I'd show a picture of the map, but what's the point? 3 boards of blank, brown hexes. Yes, the desert's desolate, but you could have given us some scrub brush, tank tracks, or even a road!
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40. Board Game: War at Sea (second edition) [Average Rating:6.41 Overall Rank:1900]
Steve Lockett
Australia
Rockingham
Western Australia
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This is the version of WaS I have, the original Aussie Jedko version.

Mine differs slightly in that the left-hand map has been aligned to the mounting-board "on the piss" (an Australian engineering term), leaving a tapering gap in the map.

I can see why AH changed the graphics completely, fortunately they didn't change the rules.

(Trivia - Jedko is now the company name behind an Aussie company trading as MilSims)
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41. Board Game: Olympica [Average Rating:6.17 Overall Rank:5960]
Rob Rob
United States
La Mesa
California
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Let me guess, there was a sale on magic markers and orange craft paper?
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42. Board Game: Eagles of the Empire: Napoleon in the Desert [Average Rating:4.92 Overall Rank:10044]
Andrew C
United States
San Marcos
California
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This is the first map that came to mind when I read this list title. The counters, however, are pretty good.
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43. Board Game: PanzerBlitz [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:1589]
Jason Sherlock
United States
Anaheim Hills
California
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When I was 9 years old (1979), I thought that this bland, beige and boring map was pretty cool looking. Looking back, bell bottoms and hang-ten shirts were considered to be cool looking in those days.javascript:emoticon(document.the_form.comments,'shake')
headshake
 
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44. Board Game: Freedom in the Galaxy [Average Rating:6.67 Overall Rank:1960]
Jason Sherlock
United States
Anaheim Hills
California
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This one is not only ugly, but barely functional due to the offset placement of the tracks. It is dificuult to read the status of the planets at a glance. Instead you have to intently stare at the 30 or so sets of concentric circles that make up this butt-ugly board. It is enough to make your eyes pop out of their head. surprise
 
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45. Board Game: Risk [Average Rating:5.59 Overall Rank:9758]
Kurt La Botz
United States
Mesa
Arizona
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Ok even thought I think Risk is a good starter game what was more butt-ugly that the original risk board and pieces. wood blocks.
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46. Board Game: Death in the Trenches: The Great War, 1914-1918 [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:5433]
James Boyd
United States
Abilene
Texas
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I'll toss this one into the mix. This picture actually makes it look good.
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47. Board Game: Hannibal: The Second Punic War [Average Rating:5.67 Overall Rank:8168]
Rick Vogel
United States
Palos Verdes Estates
California
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I've tried to get this out and play it. But every time I open the map, I look at the graphic for harbors (shown in the image above and below the cities) and think of under arm hair.

I can't help it.

Worst harbor symbol ever - it will take on all comers and win hands down.

I know it's "only" a magazine game but someone in the editorial process should have looked at that and said "NO!".
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48. Board Game: Eagles of the Empire: Napoleon in the Desert [Average Rating:4.92 Overall Rank:10044]
Torsten Meckel-Hartmann
Germany
Kaltenkirchen
Schleswig-Holstein
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How about this one.
The whole map is in brownish colors. If you look closely - even the SEA ist done in brown. Maybe the artist tried to induce the look and feel of a vintage military map, but it shouldn't have been glossy then...

No points for the counters though - these are great!
 
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49. Board Game: Junta [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:659]
Rich S
United States
Phoenix
Arizona
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Purple, green, blue, orange and red...lovely
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50. Board Game: Fire Team [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:4254]
Jim Ruddy
Canada
Hamilton
Ontario
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Not too bad for the day, but in hindsight, a rather ugly board.
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