A Life of Boardgames With Dad
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
Recommend
193 
 Thumb up
6.76
 tip
 Hide
When I was in elementary school my dad introduced me to boardgames. We had played games before, of course, but it was usually stuff like Fireball Island (which is still fantastic) and others that were shiny but thoughtless.

Pretty soon, though, he broke out his Avalon Hill collection and there was no turning back. He was the Grant to my Lee, the Yamamoto to my Nimitz, and the Rommel to my Montgomery.

So this list serves two purposes. First, it is a list of some of the more memorable gaming experiences we've had together. Second, and more importantly, it is a thank you to a great gaming partner. Dad has always beat me like a drum (on the board) when I give him the opportunity. Once I started spending time with other grown-ups I realized how rare it was/is to be treated like an adult, even if it means taking a loss when I deserve one.

Thanks Dad.
Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: Wargame [+] Family [+] Cool! [+] [View All]
  • [+] Dice rolls
1. Board Game: Blitzkrieg [Average Rating:5.88 Overall Rank:6116]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
This was the first traditional wargame Dad and I played, or at least the first that I have strong/fond memories of. It was all so new--zones of control, hexes and counters, movement factors, NATO symbols--and at the time I thought no board game could ever be as fresh and innovative. I guess in a lot of ways there aren't too many that are. I still remember how cool it was to launch amphibious invasions and airborne assaults. I don't remember ever finishing a game, but it didn't matter. The seed was sown.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
2. Board Game: The Battle of the Bulge [Average Rating:6.08 Overall Rank:5370] [Average Rating:6.08 Unranked]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
I turned Dad's flank and captured Bastogne, which is just as important in the game as it was in the real battle. I remember the game having a very realistic ebb and flow that evoked the history of the campaign even though it wasn't a perfectly accurate "simulation." This further extended my love of hex-and-counter wargames. Whenever we watch Band of Brothers together I think of this game.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
3. Board Game: A House Divided [Average Rating:7.08 Overall Rank:945]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
A House Divided is still my favorite game of all time. I think we played it for the first time in second grade, right around the time when Dad took the family on a tour of Civil War battlefields for summer vacation. We ate blackberries growing on Little Round Top and then sent whole stack-armies into Gettysburg. One of my fondest board game memories is when Dad, playing the Union, had me on the ropes in the final turns before I attacked Washington DC and captured the city to win the game. It had a lot more to do with luck than strategy, but as an elementary schooler I loved watching the Yankee garrison slowly but surely lose the final battle.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
4. Board Game: Midway [Average Rating:6.58 Overall Rank:2610]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
We only played this all the way through once, but I've always wanted to play it again. Dad was playing the Japanese and after our task forces finally stumbled on top of each other he was hurting my ships left and right. My torpedo bombers couldn't touch him. Then, just like the original battle, my dive bombers swept in and sank four of his carriers immediately. I still claim bragging rights from time to time, but I don't think they're justified until we get another crack at each other.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
5. Board Game: Strat-O-Matic Baseball [Average Rating:7.63 Overall Rank:1136]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
The best baseball game of all time. Dad and I played series after series with all sorts of teams, traditional and all-star. This game went on to be, in large part, the basis of a close friendship with a classmate of mine in fourth grade that remains just as strong today. He doesn't beat me at it as often as Dad does, though.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
6. Board Game: Scrimmage [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
This game, the only production of a company called Eskridge-Williams, is my favorite football game. It doesn't use actual teams, but rather "Red" and "Yellow" and every play is simulated down to each yard. Dad and I have played this many times, and nearly every game is a nail-biter. All it takes is one touchdown to win, so each time you set up your formation you know in the back of your mind that the fate of the game is at stake. It has the perfect blend of luck and strategy--just enough luck for the loser to justifiably demand a rematch and just enough strategy for the winner to say the dice were irrelevant. A gem.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
7. Board Game: Subbuteo [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:1284]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
There are some people who have elevated this game, with all its flicks and passes, to an artform. Dad and I aren't those people. We, along with my brothers and just about any other kid/kid at heart who comes through the house, have a great time sending our little men skittering haphazardly around the pitch. Scoring goals is just gravy.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
8. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:3700]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
Dad and I played this for the first time in a cabin (I forget where exactly) while we watched American tanks race down Iraqi highways in the first days of the war. We brought in small twigs from the forest outside to build huge log bridges and breastworks. None of the figures were painted and we were still learning the rules but it was incredibly fun. I went on to play Warhammer Fantasy and 40k during 7th and 8th grade (which Dad never got into himself but always loved to watch/hear about (or maybe I just thought he did)) but I still think that this might be the best Games Workshop system. Every game is a story.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
9. Board Game: HeroQuest [Average Rating:7.08 Overall Rank:547]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
Dad was the dungeon master, Zargon, in a campaign I played with my neighbors and little brother. We spent a great deal of our summer poring over the Armory, which only consists of about twelve items. Nearly every quest in the original 15 that come with the game is perfect. After taking Dad's role in a campaign I played with my friends this past summer I gained great respect for his self-control in not laughing cruelly after revealing that the 6,000 gold in "Castle of Mystery" was fool's gold, i.e. worthless. I didn't have the same control.
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
10. Board Game: Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:473]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
I think that just about every wargamer has some kind of story about Scenario 1: The Guards Counterattack. For me and Dad, it's his squad holding the final stone building against wave after wave of close combat attacks. I must have lost at least five units over the span of three or four rounds trying to dislodge him. The incredible resilience of that one squad won him the game. I brought Squad Leader up to college with me, but I think I'll have to build up very very slowly from Battle Cry and Ticket to Ride before I can find a willing opponent.
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
11. Board Game: Bull Run [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:6203]
Sam Smith
United States
Tennessee
flag msg tools
designer
This was the last real game Dad and I played before I left for college this fall. It came down to the wire, too. Dad had swept my defenders away from the southernmost ford and was marching unopposed towards Manassas when Jackson's veterans tore a hole in the his lines around Centreville. Both of us were a couple turns away from victory. However, the dice gods smiled on me and the ad hoc force I put in Dad's way managed to hold the Federal brigades up just enough to give the newly reinforced Jackson time to march into Centreville. It was a good way to end one era of gaming- fun, close, and full of competition without being overly competitive.

Again, thanks Dad for dragging me to the table when I was younger so I would drag you to the table now that I'm older. Happy birthday.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
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.