$18.00
GeekGold Bonus for All Supporters: 108

6,707 Supporters

$15 min for supporter badge & GeekGold bonus
42.3% of Goal | left

Support:

Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 Hide
9 Posts

Wargames» Forums » General

Subject: Is Second World War at Sea good for solitaire? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Long Lance
United States
Florida
flag msg tools
I count twelve coming in from starboard, Admiral.
badge
Fourteen from port side, sir!
mbmbmbmbmb
I have long been interested in the early days of WW2 in the DEI (Pacific). I just became aware there is a SWWAS game about it, Strike South. Other games on the subject seem rare and/or ugly or get poor reviews - 1942, and the Against the Odds 2012 one.

Wondering how well this series works solitaire? Sounds like it requires plotting and simultaneous reveal.

Thanks.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mo Caraher
Canada
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Just my 2 cents, but I don't recommend these for solo play at all.

It can be done, but playing this series or GWAS solo provides only a fraction of the enjoyment that one derives when the nature of the enemy is truly unknown. Not knowing what your opponent's Fleet Markers represent is, for my money, absolutely the best part of the game.
Then you still have the usual solo-player compromises, having to make "the best decision" for a particular side at that particular time.

The publisher has some solo rules available on their site, which I'll link when I find them, but they really only randomize Fleet Movement.

Even the tactical game suffers in solo play and, speaking only for myself, becomes a tedious exercise in die-rolling and record-keeping.

With a live (or online) opponent, though, the operational game is outstanding.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mo Caraher
Canada
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Solitaire rules:

http://www.avalanchepress.com/SolitaireSWWAS.php

Also, Mike Hoyt (Blockhead, here on BGG, I think) provided me with some tips for solo play that I haven't got around to yet. We were speaking specifically of the Great War at Sea series at the time, but Mike's comments would apply just as well to this series. This is from a discussion on ConSimWorld:

"FWIW the way I handle surprise varies somewhat by game but the key thing is I figure it's the cardboard on the map that gets surprised, not me, the all seeing game player. So yes, I can see that Cruiser patrolling in that sea zone, but the approaching fleet lacks my perspective and yes they could very well blunder into him because that sea zone is on the route they'd most likely take.

A supplemental approach is based on the specific situation, but often-times my cardboard heroes are faced with a choice of A or B and there is no particular reason to favor one or the other, so roll a die and on even they go A and odd B (and run into that Cruiser!)

If playing Pearl Harbor I don't let the US be any more alert than they were, though they could be. My Japanese approach Midway assuming the US fleet is still at PH, unless their submarine picket line did get into position early, or the Americans were delayed or (die roll time!) didn't believe the decrypts at all.

You can't fool yourself, but you can limit your commands to only acting on what they know, and you can even let one side offer a feint with a percentage of the the other side falling for it based on how likely you think that would be, and then playing that side as you think they would go if they did fall for a feint, until such time as the circumstances change and they re-evaluate."

I hope that's useful.



7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Matt Irsik
United States
Clearfield
Utah
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I've tried a few Eastern Fleet and Strike South scenarios solitaire and you definitely lose a lot of the bluffing, nervousness, and fear of the unknown that is present in a two player or group game using that system. Probably the best solitaire system for carrier warfare in WW2 is the game Carrier by Victory Games. Adding that kind of a system to SWAS would ramp up the complexity by quite a few notches and would be a huge undertaking.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike Hoyt
United States
Durango
Colorado
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm flattered that Mo remembers my thouhts, let alone quotes them! Thanks for that.

Lance, I have a question that in this instance is directed to you, but comes to mind whenever I see these "is it good for solo" questions, so don't feel obligated to shoulder the burden of answering if you don't feel like it, but...

What's your alternative? You've already siad you haven't found another (presumably designed for solo) game on the subject,and you wouldn't be asking if you had a FtF partner handy, so .... it's either accept the admittedly somewhat compromised choice of playing each side as best you can, or not playing at all

And maybe that's the question, how compromised is it? I've never played this game FtF, but I can clearly see how you lose those elements of bluff/surprise even gamemanship, so if that is critical, give it a pass. But if you are interested in the geography, the ships, the problems of organizing task forces and keeping them fueled, heck just about everything you'd find in a book on the subject, then the lack of a FtF opponent is of no matter. You can still study the campaign in great detail.

Hope that comes across as helpful,mean it to be
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Long Lance
United States
Florida
flag msg tools
I count twelve coming in from starboard, Admiral.
badge
Fourteen from port side, sir!
mbmbmbmbmb
blockhead wrote:
Lance,


LOL

blockhead wrote:
I have a question that in this instance is directed to you, but comes to mind whenever I see these "is it good for solo" questions, so don't feel obligated to shoulder the burden of answering if you don't feel like it, but...

What's your alternative? You've already siad you haven't found another (presumably designed for solo) game on the subject,and you wouldn't be asking if you had a FtF partner handy, so .... it's either accept the admittedly somewhat compromised choice of playing each side as best you can, or not playing at all


The alternative is definitely not playing at all, and playing something else instead. Since I don't own the game, this includes "not buying the game in the first place." It is quite possible, even likely, there is no good game on the subject, at least suitable for solitaire. So be it. Many subjects are that way. It may be all the things that would make this an interesting game require extreme fog of war; if that is the case it simply isn't a good subject for a (solitaire) game. I'll just have to settle for reading about it. Since SWWAS did not look like a double blind game, I thought maybe it was solitaire friendly, like say Victory in the Pacific, but apparently that is not the case. The best solitaire games have little or no fog of war and don't need any to work.

I wargame because I like moving pieces on cool looking maps. The DEI area is one of the coolest looking air-sea-land areas I have ever seen, it seems made for fascinating amphibious campaigns. Lots of islands, some very large and creating different sea zones that create multiple fronts, lots of ports, obscure early war air and naval units that you never see again after this campaign, tropical terrain that should lend itself to rich jungle greens and turquoise waters on the map, etc.

For various reasons, game designers haven't paid this campaign much mind, probably because of the lack of large forces involved here, and the endless series of Allied failures and disasters which make it look like a pushover. I think things could have gone far differently. We're talking some operations only involving two transports. One or two torpedo or gun hits could have changed the course of an entire invasion.


blockhead wrote:
And maybe that's the question, how compromised is it? I've never played this game FtF, but I can clearly see how you lose those elements of bluff/surprise even gamemanship, so if that is critical, give it a pass. But if you are interested in the geography, the ships, the problems of organizing task forces and keeping them fueled, heck just about everything you'd find in a book on the subject, then the lack of a FtF opponent is of no matter. You can still study the campaign in great detail


My impression is this system (SWWAS) is not that detailed of a simulation regarding operational problems, but is instead more of a game. I could be wrong, but I don't think people use it to study operational problems.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin
United States
Kalamazoo
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
" Probably the best solitaire system for carrier warfare in WW2 is the game Carrier by Victory Games."

thumbsup
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Long Lance
United States
Florida
flag msg tools
I count twelve coming in from starboard, Admiral.
badge
Fourteen from port side, sir!
mbmbmbmbmb
The DEI campaign did not feature carrier warfare.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrei Shlepov
Russia
Moscow
flag msg tools
Heraus zur letzten Parade!
mbmbmbmbmb
You could definitely play SWWAS solo but not in the usual sense. Because you cannot simply play SWWAS by setting up units and starting pushing counters. You got to do a big preparatory work: compose task forces out of ships, assign missions to those task forces, write orders for those missions etc. And most of all, you got to come up with a plan for your side which should take into account possible enemy actions/reactions. And your opponent does the same. That's there a game really is. An actual game is a mere execution and a check whether your plan is sound/flexible enough to hold out against opponent's plan.

This preparatory work is really no different whether you're going to play solo or against a real opponent. In real play your opponent rarely oblige you by playing in the expected way. In solo game your opponent does 100% what's expected of him (and many admirals were good at playing that way, cf. Japanese preparations before Midway).

So you could play SWWAS solo to see whether your plan would hold out against your opponent' response as you see it.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.