Books you've read because of Wargames you've played
Jonathan Holen
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Thought of this GeekList based on a thread started by:

Enrico Viglino
United States
Eugene
OR
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He started a thread asking if Reviewers should state their knowledge of the historical background for wargame reviews. It got me thinking. Most of the wargames I've played have generated interest in the time period and historical background after having played them, causing me to look for books in order to learn more. Maybe I'm the only one, guess that'll be the case if no one adds anything to this list!

What are some books you've read, based on wargames you've played?

I'll start it off..
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1. Board Game: Ottoman Sunset [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:1788] [Average Rating:7.38 Unranked]
Jonathan Holen
United States
Washington
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Great game!

Really enjoyed learning about the events that took place, and this naturally led to wanting to learn more. I posted on the forums and got several recommendations for "A Peace to End All Peace" by David Fromkin.



I never did finish the entire book, however made it through about 80% of it. I found it quite interesting.
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2. Board Game: Lock 'n Load: Band of Heroes [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:1726] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Jonathan Holen
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Another game I'm really enjoying!

I admit I knew a bit more about this compared to Ottoman Sunset however wanted to get more information. I posted a recommendation thread similar to my previous post, and got several recommendations.

Through that I've ordered two; "Company Commander" by Charles B. MacDonald, and "Currahee!: A Screaming Eagle at Normandy" by Donald R. Burgett & Stephen E. Ambrose.



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3. Board Game: The Great War in Europe [Average Rating:6.76 Overall Rank:5386]
Colin Raitt
United Kingdom
Boston
Lincolnshire
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Yeah, the western front is static from 1915 till 1917, the blockade of Germany and the U-boat campaign are slow grinding affairs.In contrast 1914 and 1918 saw movement in France and the other fronts are quite dramatic. Turkey joins, Serbian army driven out, Gallipoli landing, Salonika landing, Italy joins, Bulgaria joins, Romania joined and defeated, America joins, Russia defeated, Italy driven back, Iraq and Syria conquered. Battle of Jutland. Birth of over the horizon artillery, air, gas and tank warfare. Shell shortages, mutinies and revolution. Theres a lot happened after all.

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4. Board Game: Hannibal: Rome vs. Carthage [Average Rating:7.82 Overall Rank:143]
Chris Morriss
England
Loughton
Essex
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I enjoyed reading this book. Sir Nigel Bagnall (now deceased) was a Field Marshall and Chief of the General Staff in the British Army. He not only provides an engaging account of the Punic Wars but also analyses the strategies and tactics of the two sides.

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5. Board Game: A Game of Thrones (first edition) [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:319]
Matthew Purcell
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Columbus
Ohio
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...not really a war game, but i read the books because of it.
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6. Board Game: Starship Troopers [Average Rating:6.47 Overall Rank:2337]
Pokey 64
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Niagara Falls
New York
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It's the other way around for me. I play wargames because of books I've read. However, this is one book I read because I played the wargame first.
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7. Board Game: Blockade Runner [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:4363]
patrick stevens
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Los Angeles
California
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Strangling the Confederacy

http://www.civilwarnews.com/reviews/2010br/nov/strangling-do...
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8. Board Game: A Week In Hell: The Battle of Hue [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:4832]
Mark Stricker
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Universal City
Texas
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Fire in the Streets is Eric Hammel's highly detailed combat history of urban combat in Hue City during the 1968 Communist Tet Offensive.

Great read.

Mark
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9. Board Game: Triumph of Chaos [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:2371]
Matt Gustafson
United States
Warsaw
Indiana
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This game led me to read:

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10. Board Game: A Bridge Too Far: ASL Historical Module 6 [Average Rating:8.10 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.10 Unranked]
Chad
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Denver
Colorado
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I am currently reading Cornelius Ryan's book "A Bridge to Far" because of multiple games on Market Garden

Other ones include:

Several books on WW1 because of Paths of Glory
Defenders of Faith because of Here I Stand
Several books on Stalingrad because of Red Barricades: ASL Historical Module 1
Guns, Germs and Steel because of Origins: How We Became Human (actually a re-read - but who's counting)
Several WWII Pacific because of Empire of the Sun

I am sure there are more - but my memory is getting the best of me.
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11. Board Game: Ici, c'est la France! The Algerian War of Independence 1954 - 1962 [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:3871]
Mark Sautman
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Evans
Georgia
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I just picked up


so I could better appreciate the game.

Similarly, after playing



I picked up this 2 volume set:
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12. Board Game: A Few Acres of Snow [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:245]
Billy the Hut
United States
Boston
Massachusetts
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Various board games have led me to books over the years & it's worked the other way around for me too.

A couple of the more recent have been:

A Few Acres of Snow led me to pick up a few books on the period and prior. Including "A Few Acres of Snow": The Saga of the French and Indian Wars" by Robert Leckie a book that I strongly do not recommend. However I also ended up checking out "The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity" by Jill Lepore from my local library, a book I strongly recommend.


Most recently the game (yes not a war game) Perry Rhodan: The Cosmic League inspired me to pick up one of the Perry Rhodan books. A local used book shop had a few, #8 was the earliest in the series they had available, so I picked it up. Yes I know it's pulp, and expect little of it, but I kind of want to know what the game is based on. It also only cost me a buck. So that's next on my reading list.
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13. Board Game: D-Day at Omaha Beach [Average Rating:8.26 Overall Rank:475]
Kurt Over
United States
Philadelphia
Pennsylvania
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This game got me to read Joseph Balkowski's _Omaha Beach: D-Day, June 6, 1944_ as well as the companion volume on Utah Beach.

A much greater and empathic understanding of what is going on as my infantry companies get chopped up and my DD tanks sink.
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14. Board Game: Champion Hill [Average Rating:7.18 Overall Rank:5159]
Kurt Over
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Philadelphia
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Playing this and getting more interested in details on the Vicksburg Campaign led me to Walter Grabau's _Ninety-Eight Days: Geographers View Vicksburg Campaign_.

Not the classic on the campaign, but still an approachable read.
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15. Board Game: Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:1869]
Kurt Over
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Philadelphia
Pennsylvania
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Between this and Silent War I started reading and re-reading books on WW2 in the Pacific Theatre. A few recommendations:

_Silent Victory_ by Clay Blair on the USN submarine operations in the Pacific. Blair's two volumes on the U-boat war in the Atlantic are also a good read in my opinion.

_The Barrier and the Javelin_ by H P Willmott on early war Japanese and American strategies.

_The Rising Sun_ by John Toland and _Kaigun_ by Evans and Peattie give some good background on the development of Japanese strategy and the IJN.

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16. Board Game: Warhammer 40,000 [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:1925]
Mark Williams
United Kingdom
Gosport
Hampshire
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I've known about the various incarnations of Warhammer 40k for a decade and played a couple of times but always been put off by the cost and the necessity to paint miniatures (which I hate and am really bad at). A couple of weeks ago I picked up a copy of the Horus Heresy trilogy at a car boot sale for a couple of pounds. I had been aware of the many Warhammer 40k novels published because I read far too much science fiction/space opera. Wow, I was expecting something low quality and trashy but found the trilogy to be every bit the match of Alistair Reynolds, Peter Hamilton and Iain M Banks. Very much character based stores with too many characters but I still read the trilogy in a fortnight and now know more about the Warhammer 40k universe than I have learnt in ten years of observing the game in the sidelines. Planning to read the other books soon...Far superior to the game.
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17. Board Game: Victory in the Pacific [Average Rating:7.18 Overall Rank:1252] [Average Rating:7.18 Unranked]
Andy Cowen
United States
Union Springs
New York
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Led to Eagle Against the Sun; an excellent general history of the Pacific War. Also, "Kaigun: Strategy, Tactics, and Technology in the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1887-1941"
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18. Board Game: Horus Heresy (2010) [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:1127]
Andy Cowen
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Union Springs
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Led to "Horus Rising"...good wargame, book not so much, save your money
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19. Board Game: Storm over Arnhem [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:1593]
Andy Cowen
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Union Springs
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Led to "A Bridge Too Far"
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20. Board Game: Spies! [Average Rating:6.34 Overall Rank:4684]
Eric Avila
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Stafford
Virginia
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In this case, the books inspired me to seek out the game.

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