MMP P500 for May 2009
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The rising tide seen at the end of March continued through April, with nine of ten titles experiencing growth in their preorder numbers.

Kingdom of Heaven led the pack, increasing in its growth rate over last month, a feat achieved by Breakthrough: Cambrai as well. Both are now within 20 percent of their preorder targets.

It was surprising then to have MMP's Brian Youse announce on the 29th that both Cambrai and Kawaguchi's Gamble were at risk of being pulled due to their designers' concerns about the titles' slow climbs up the P500.

The mystery of why these two Area Impulse titles have to meet P500 goals while Storm over Stalingrad did not wasn't addressed.

In related news, the rights to Crucible of Courage were returned to the designer citing a lack of follow-up interest in the title *after* it achieved its preorder target. So it made its preorder goal and now MMP is dumping it.

Confused?

The full text of Brian's announcement is at :
http://talk.consimworld.com/WebX?14@1016.muIbeP6B5nT.11@.ee6...

The numbers here do not reflect any impact from this announcement.

You may notice a new line on the growth charts. I've added light green lines at 20% of the preorder target so we can better see when titles have "entered the zone".

Four other titles joined Kingdom and Cambrai in double digit growth last month: Angola, Karelia, Guderian's Blitzkrieg, and War of the Suns. The latter was put over its preorder target by the surge.

Otherwise things are quiet, the crew at MMP remains mum as to production news. There is talk about other titles going up on the preorder list soon, and AMDT has just shipped, by all reports it looks amazing.

As always, keep your sticks on the ice people and enjoy the list!


My standard disclaimer regarding MMP's ASL titles:
I don't include any ASL preorders in this list since:
(a) ASL preorders rocket up to their goals in a few weeks. They don't need wider visibility to make it to press.
(b) These lists are a ton of work, and take time that has to come out of my limited game time budget
(c) I have no interest in ASL myself.

In short, I don't have the time or desire to spend time including ASL titles here. I have nothing *against* ASL, but if you want to make an ASL preorders geeklist, more power to you.


Preorder Summary Stats:




Bamm! (Games that just made the cut)
- War of the Suns

Damn Close (titles within 10% of their preorder Goal)
- The Tide at Sunrise, 40 orders away
- Kingdom of Heaven, 50 orders away

Last month's
Winners:

19 Kingdom of Heaven
18 Breakthrough
16 Karelia
13 War of the Suns
12 Guderian's
11 Angola
7 France 1940
5 Tide at Sunrise
4 Kawaguchi's

Losers:
-2 Help Arrives

Production Queue news:
Released Last Month:
- A Most Dangerous Time

Shipping Soon:
- GD'42

At the Printers:

Under Development:
A Victory Denied
Battle Above the Clouds
No Question of Surrender
War of the Suns

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1. Board Game: GD '42 [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:4331]
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GD'42 (TCS )

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded


Production Status
Said to ship after AMDT, no dates named however.


"Bastogne shipping now. Then PBII. Then AMDT. PBII and AMDT may swap places, depending on a few things. Then GD'42."
- Source: Brian Youse (MMP), CSW Feb 25th 2009
"same status as Bastogne except map/rules are in progress at printers instead of already delivered.."
- Source: Brian Youse (MMP), CSW Jan 5th 2009

My Two Cents:
Lord knows I wish I had the time to try this series. I have to wonder how Dean finds the time ... then again his kids are 10-15 years older than mine.

The Buzz:

The Company Line:
GD ’42 covers the desperate battle for survival of the GD Division as it faced down the entire Soviet 3rd Mech Corps (with over 200 tanks) over several days. Designer Wig Graves conducted extensive research, combing both German and Soviet sources to create the order of battle. The Soviets begin with seemingly overwhelming force, while the Germans trade space for time and attempt to rush reinforcements to the front to plug inevitable gaps. While the Germans are primarily on the defense, careful counter-attacks against the relatively immobile Soviet formations can prove to be key to victory. And if the Soviets do not preserve their forces carefully, they will end with the historical result: stable German lines and an entire mechanized corps wrecked.

Retail Price: $70.00
Pre-Order Price: $52.50

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=4...

Designer: Wig Graves
Series Design: Dean Essig and Lee Forester
Artwork: Nicolas Eskubi and Dean Ess

Components:
- 3 22”x34” maps
- 3 countersheets (840 ½” counters)
- 1 TCS 4.0 Series Rulebook
- 2 TCS 4.0 charts
- 1 GD ’42 Rulebook
- 2 Morale Charts
- 2 Dice
 
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2. Board Game: A Victory Denied [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:2295]
 
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A Victory Denied (IGS)

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded

My Two Cents:
The sequel to the enormously successful A Victory Lost, this time designed by AVL's developer and IGS founding father Adam Starkweather. I'm very excited about this title as the fluid campaign between Smolensk and Moscow has always appealed to me as a gamer. I wish the counters were 5/8 and the map hexes big enough to avoid stacking, but then I wish the counters were 1" so we have to draw a line somewhere. Still this game's slow climb up the P500 has been a bit of a mystery, happy it's there now.

Only one question remains, is the playing time "Adam Time" or real time?


The Buzz:
Designer/Developer Adam Starkweather told CSW that:

We are working hard to have A Victory Denied ready in time for WBC.

- consimworld April 30, 2009.

And back in March he let us know:

AVD is close to being handed in but as for when it goes to press, that depends on MMP and their schedule. I suspect Brian will have some idea once it gets to him.

- consimworld March 7, 2009.

The Company Line:
Building on the enormous critical success of A Victory Lost, A Victory Denied is a wargame that offers the same elegant simplicity of A Victory Lost but also covers the unique aspects of this great battle. While the system remains the same, upgraded supply rules and command structure rules will be added to model how important these problems were in this battle – and air power and Stalin’s Organs will make their first appearance in the system. But what made A Victory Lost so special will still be in full force – easy rules, unpredictable chit pulls, wild game play, and the ability to play the game almost right out of the box.

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=4...

Retail Price: $38.00
Pre-Order Price: $28.50

Components:
- 1 32 by 22 map
- 280 1/2” counters
- 16 page full color rulebook

Solitaire rating: Excellent
Complexity: Low
Playing time: 6 hours
Scenarios: 1

Designer: Adam Starkweather
Developer: Nick Richardson
Graphic Artist: Niko Eskubi
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3. Board Game: War of the Suns [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:6483]
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War of the Suns (IGS)

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded, April 2009



My Two Cents:
Finally !

The Buzz:

The Company Line:
War of the Suns was first designed by Leonard To, a Hong Kong native, more than 20 years ago. It won the championship of the First Wargame Design Competition in Hong Kong in 1984. The game has since been updated in the early 90's, and extensively again during the last 3 years. Offering exclusive research based on recently opened Chinese archives, as well as many Japanese and English sources, has made War of the Suns one of the most painstakingly researched and accurate games of its type ever made.

The game covers the period from July 1937 to August 1945. The roughly 1:3,000,000 map covers most of China proper, Burma, Assam area of India, and parts of Thailand and Indochina.

Retail Price: $160.00
Pre-Order Price: $120.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=4...

Designer: Leonard To
Developer:
Artwork: Mark Mahaffey

Components:
- 3 22"x32" mapsheets
- Over 1500 counters on 12 countersheets
- 48 page rulebook
- 9 player aid cards
- 4 six-sided dice

Game Turn: 3 months
Counters: Army/Division for the Chinese;
Division/Brigade for the Japanese and British

Game Details: Players: 1-4
Scenarios: 5
Complexity: Medium to Hard
Playing Time: 5 to 34 hours
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4. Board Game: The Tide at Sunrise: The Russo-Japanese War, 1904-1905 [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:3559]
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The Tide at Sunrise(IGS)

Total Pre-Orders: 515 (+5)
Pre-Orders Needed: 550
Months on the List: 19
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 5



My Two Cents:
War of the Suns finally crawled over its preorder level in April, it's classmate, Tide at Sunrise, continues to flirt with its target number.


The Buzz:


The Company Line:
Tide at Sunrise continues the philosophy that began with A Victory Lost. Using tried and true mechanics but with some major twists, Tide at Sunrise will be a major test of player skill that is rarely seen in the wargaming hobby. Here, the base system is little more than the tried and true game from SPI called Napoleon at Waterloo. But not all is at it seems.

Retail Price: $40.00
Pre-Order Price: $30.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Playtime: 3-5 hours
Complexity: Simple
Solitaire rating: excellent

Game scale: Turns: 12 (each turn represents one month of real time)
Counters: Divisions and Brigades for the land units, Capital Ships for the naval units
Hex scale: 10 kilometers

Game Credits: Designer: Yukihiro Kuroda
Developer: Adam Starkweather
Artwork: Niko Eskubi

Components:
- One 22” by 39” full color map
- 140 1/2” land formation counters
- 44 1 1/4” by 5/8” ship counters
- 16 page full color rulebook
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5. Board Game: Kingdom of Heaven: The Crusader States 1097-1291 [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:2528]
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Kingdom of Heaven

Total Pre-Orders: 480 (+19)
Pre-Orders Needed: 530
Months on the List: 17
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 15



My Two Cents:
The more I read about this title, the more I want my preorder to arrive. This month's growth shows I'm not alone - could this be the surge?

The designer has posted a great description of the nine scenarios in the game. So yes, the game costs $60 on preorder ... but for nine fully developed, and fairly varied 2-4 hour scenarios it sounds like a great deal.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/294654

Scenarios cover the first Crusade through the Mongol invasion of the Middle East and beyond. It's like a system of related games set closely together in history.

The CSW forum has some decent screen captures of playtesting art:

http://talk.consimworld.com/WebX?13@1016.Imi3ebl24jw.24@.1dc...

Example of an elegant mechanic discussed to date; one does not need to move along a chain of friendly strongholds, but if your forces do, they avoid attrition - which can be intensified by mountain passes (Hannibal !), the harshness of the open desert, and even haring by Muslim light cavalry (who can tail slower Christian armies).

I *really* hope the army of CDG fans are discovering this game.


The Buzz:
The word on CSW is that an illustrated AAR will be posted here on BGG in the coming month. Here's hoping.

In April, BGG's charlesf posted that:

Having read the rules, I must say this has the most exciting siege system I have ever come across and exudes a lot of cleverness in many other respects.




The Company Line:
Kingdom of Heaven is a two-player card-driven game that allows the players to experience the great campaigns in the Middle East between A.D. 1097 and 1291. Nine different historical scenarios pit the greatest commanders of the age against one another: Nur ad-Din, Richard the Lionhearted, Saladin, Frederick Barbarossa, Louis IX, Hulegu Khan, Baibars, and many others.
Each turn represents one year, and the scenarios range in length from the 3-turn First Crusade learning scenario to the 7-turn assault of Baibars on the faltering ramparts of the Crusader States. The game emphasizes playability, and every scenario should be completable in a 3-4 hour evening. Complexity is approximately the same as Wilderness War by GMT or Shifting Sands by MMP.

Retail Price: $80.00
Pre-Order Price: $60.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Designer: Scott de Brestian
Developer: Neil Randall
Artwork: Mark Mahaffey and Niko Eskubi

Components:
- 1 22x34” cardstock map
- 110 “poker quality” playing cards
- 528 5/8” counters
- 24 page rule book
- 24 page scenario book
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6. Board Game: Breakthrough: Cambrai [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:4109]
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Breakthrough: Cambrai

Total Pre-Orders: 445 (+16)
Pre-Orders Needed: 550
Months on the List: 17
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 9



My Two Cents:

Like Kingdom of Heaven, this title has increased its growth rate the past two months ... Please, please, please - be the surge!

Cambrai appeared on my radar for one simple reason, Michael Rinella. His Not War But Murder is a favorite of mine and his prior work, Monty's Gamble: Market Garden is an OOP Gem.

Cambrai gives us a dynamic situation where both sides get to take the offensive. It foreshadows elements we expect in World War 2 titles: tanks, breakthroughs, counterattacks, air support. Can the British capitalize on the new Tank technology? Can the German shock troops effectively counter? What role will airpower play.

Let's not forget the tension Area-Impulse always has and you never have the enough impulses to do what you want.

Did I mention 1 inch counters with Niko's art?

[subliminal message] Preorder Me [/subliminal message]


The Buzz:
In March designer Michael Rinella had this to say:

I'd love to see this one in the hands of players, instead of playtesters. This was supposed to be the model of future area-impulses games: bigger counters, simpler rules, short playing time. It's been nearly six years since MMP published Monty's Gamble. I am astonished this game doesn't have 750+ pre-orders after 16 months. If you want more games using this system please order this one!


Last autumn he'd told us:

Breakthrough: Cambrai is the best thing I've designed to date, and that includes Not War But Murder.

I can tell you it was more heavily researched, and it's been in continuous playtest and refinement with the developer Uli who lives in Germany and who along with the playtest group researched German-language sources I couldn't access (plus my German is pretty bad). I was shown the light on some order of battle issues, thanks to them.
Three sheets of 70 one-inch counters. BIG.

Unlike Monty's Gamble we have ONE person for map, counter, and box art, and it's the MMP house artist, Niko. The art is gonna kick ass on this one. I love the samples I've seen.
Quick playing. Multiple scenarios. Sudden death possibilities (the Haig Decision die roll). The "diceless advantage" that made its debut in Not War But Murder.


He's also written that the game is completely playtested and ready to go, and that "once the game hits the pxxx mark I would expect it to go to the printers quickly."


Pictures are worth a thousand words (and the exchange rate on my verbiage is even worse) so here's some images from the web.

Playtest Map on the designer's website:


A playtest in progress:


and another view of the map:



The Company Line:
Breakthrough: Cambrai is two player game simulating the British assault to breach the “Hindenburg Line” between November 20 and December 3, 1917. One player controls the British forces, the other the German forces. The object of the game is to control a certain number of areas on the map or, for the British, to exit units off the map into certain perimeter zones.
Breakthrough: Cambrai is an area-movement game which uses impulse mechanics (where players alternate "mini-turns") similar to popular games like Breakout:Normandy and Monty's Gamble, Market Garden. The impulse nature of the game means little or no down time for each player while waiting for the other to complete a move or attack.

Retail Price: $48.00
Pre-Order Price: $36.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Designer: Michael Rinella
Developer: Uli Blennemann
Artwork: Niko Eskubi.

Components:
- 1 22” x 34” map
- 1 16-page rulebook
- 1 16 page scenario/play booklet
- 3 Sheets of 1” counters
- 4 Setup and Reinforcement Cards
- 2 player aid cards
- 4 dice
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7. Board Game: La Bataille de France, 1940 [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:6869] [Average Rating:7.69 Unranked]
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La Bataille de France 1940

Total Pre-Orders: 207 (+7)
Pre-Orders Needed: 300
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 6



My Two Cents:
France 1940 had a better than average month. People like what they see, and with niko's art ... it's easy to see why.


The Buzz:
The sample map artwork posted here on BGG is some of the most gorgeous I have ever seen.

Take a look:


Let's hear from "A las Barricadas" fans, how anticipated is this title?

The Company Line:
In May, 1940, World War II took a turn that will change history forever—the German Army invaded France through the neutral countries of Belgium and Netherlands and thus avoiding the fearsome Maginot Line. The French Army, supposedly the best army of the time, felt far from any threat. Against all expectations, the neutral nations were quickly overrun, and the British Expeditionary Corps was forced to be evacuated, almost miraculously, from the channel port of Dunkirk. France capitulated in two months.

This game recreates those events and allows players to reproduce, at a tactical level, the most famous battles of the “Blitzkrieg”. Based on the “A las Barricadas” game system, with new rules added to simulate to this historical period, France 1940 promises many enjoyable hours of fierce game play involving infantry, tanks, artillery, and aircraft from all the armies that took part in this campaign.

Retail Price: $61.00
Pre-Order Price: $53.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Designer: Juan Carlos Cebrián
Developer:
Artwork: Nicolás "Niko" Eskubi

Components:
- four 11.5" x 15.7" maps
- 3 sheets of counters and markers (400+ counters)
- 30 page rulebook printed in two languages—Spanish and English
- Two dice
- 12 Scenario cards
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8. Board Game: Help Arrives! [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked] [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
 
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A las Barricadas ...Help Arrives!

Total Pre-Orders: 163 (-2)
Pre-Orders Needed: 300
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 1



My Two Cents:
This title isn't doing so well, posting last months only net decline in preorders and having an anemic 1 preorder per month average for the year. Could it be hurt by it's parent game being out of print?

The Buzz:


The Company Line:
War Storm Series presents the first expansion of the tactical game set in the Spanish Civil War, A las Barricadas!. Help Arrives... in the form of new units such as the International Brigades, the Italian Corpo Troppe Volontarie, and the German Cóndor Legion.
Help Arrives... with 300 new counters and 12 exciting new scenarios that expand the original game and cover almost every type of unit that took part in the conflict.

Retail Price: $40.00
Pre-Order Price: $31.50

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Designer: Juan Carlos Cebrián
Developer:
Artwork: Nicolás "Niko" Eskubi

Components:
- 1 map
- 2 counter sheets
- 12 scenario cards
- Charts
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9. Board Game: Kawaguchi's Gamble: Edson's Ridge [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:9323]
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Kawaguchi's Gamble: Edson's Ridge

Total Pre-Orders: 381 (+3)
Pre-Orders Needed: 530
Months on the List: 14
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 2



My Two Cents:
KG:ER had a better than average month last month, but that's not saying much given how slow it's been posting gains.

The illustrated Ongoing Action Report (OAR ? ) is back and hopefully will catch people's attention:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/402992

The Buzz:
In late breaking news, the game's designer has expressed concern about the title's growth rate and it's days on MMP's list may be numbered - see geek list header for details.



In February, Area-Impulse designer Michael Rinella had this to say about Kawaguchi's Gamble:

I've seen this game kicking around at the WBCs for a couple of years. Had it demonstrated to me last year. This is a sweet addition to the area-movement line, and a World War Two Pacific theme is especially welcome.


CSW folder (Edson's Ridge):
http://talk.consimworld.com/WebX?14@166.L8WaetvBo4f.22@.1dd2...
Cover art : http://talk.consimworld.com/WebX?233@166.L8WaetvBo4f.30@.1dd...

The Company Line:
Kawaguchi's Gamble: Edson's Ridge covers the area of Edson's Ridge and the surrounding jungle just south of Henderson Airfield on the island of Guadalcanal during September 1942. The Japanese, as part of a complicated multi-pronged attack, sent three battalions, nearly 3000 men, charging towards the ridge protecting the airfield. Almost 800 Paramarines and Raiders defended the ridge with amazing courage and, despite suffering horrible casualties, kept from being overrun and saved both the airfield and possibly the Marine presence on Guadalcanal. The Japanese are often cited as having lost nearly 80% of their men attacking the ridge.
Kawaguchi's Gamble: Edson's Ridge is five turns long, each turn is a variable length of alternating impulses. The game length between experienced gamers is 2.5 to 3 hours.

Retail Price: $44.00
Pre-Order Price: $33.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=5...

Designer: Brian Youse & Ken Dunn
Developer: Ken Dunn
Artwork: Nicolas Eskubi

Components:
- 22"x34" full-color mapsheet
- 2 sheets of 5/8" counters
- 4 player aid cards
- full-color rulebook with examples
- 4 six-sided dice
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10. Board Game: Where Eagles Dare [Average Rating:8.30 Overall Rank:3016]
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Where Eagles Dare

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded

Production Status

WED should be sent up to MMP in late May.
- Source: Adam Starkweather (game designer), CSW April 6th, 2009


My Two Cents:
What can I say, people love TDC, this is more of a good thing. If the cost of entry gives you pause, see No Question of Surrender below.


Map prototypes from Adam;s post on CSW:






And yes ... the cat's included!
(a $35 value, yours absolutely free for preordering)
(some restrictions apply)
(your free cat may appear smaller then the one pictured, so small in fact as to be invisible to the naked eye. But it's free! )


The Buzz:

The Company Line:
The eagerly-awaited sequel to The Devil’s Cauldron, Where Eagles Dare completes the Market Garden saga and allows players to play out the entire operation. In addition, Where Eagles Dare is also a complete and standalone game and offers a fascinating game situation in which the outnumbered, elite 101st Airborne division must race from emergency to emergency to maintain the vital lifeline to the British 1st Airborne Division fighting for its life in Arnhem. This single and fragile lifeline would come to be called “Hell’s Highway”.
Where Eagles Dare: the Battle for Hell’s Highway is the next game in the Grand Tactical Series of company level games offered by Multi-Man Publishing. The game will also introduce new terrain types and new special rules to fully explore the battle. Where Eagles Dare will introduce a special off map movement system to allow the Germans to move forces from sector to sector of the battlefield and a host of other rules to make this game as unique and interesting as The Devil’s Cauldron.

Retail Price: $160.00
Pre-Order Price: $120.00

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Designer: Adam Starkweather
Developer: Nick Richardson
Artwork: Niko Eskubi

Components:
- Series Rulebook (in full-color)
- Series Rules Summary (in full-color)
- Exclusive Rulebook (in full-color)
- Historical Booklet (in full-color)
- 6 Player aids (in full-color)
- Turn Record and Weather Table Chart (in full-color)
- 2 CRT/TEC (in full-color)
- 4 23.5" by 35.5" full-color mapsheets
- 10 counter sheets
- 4 10-sided dice
- large (TDC sized) box
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11. Board Game: No Question of Surrender [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:4416]
Iain K
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No Question of Surrender (IGS)

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded

My Two Cents:
Hell, we all want to try the Grand Tactical Series, this game let's us test the water before diving into the Market-Garden Monsters.

The Buzz:
This title passed it's preorder goal in a big way earlier this year so I'll stop tracking its growth.

The Company Line:
No Question of Surrender is the first game in the Grand Tactical Series of company-level games offered by Multi-Man Publishing to examine the North African campaign. The game will also introduce new terrain types to the system and new special rules to cover events from the battle.

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Retail Price: $68.00
Pre-Order Price: $51.00

Designer: Nick Richardson
Developer: Adam Starkweather
Rules Writer: Jon Gautier
Graphics: Niko Eskubi

Components:
- Series Rulebook
- Series Rules Summary
- NQOS Exclusive Rulebook
- 4 color division cards
- one 22"x34" map sheet
- 3 counter sheets
- 4 10-sided dice
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12. Board Game: Angola [Average Rating:8.00 Overall Rank:1743]
Iain K
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Angola (IGS)

Total Pre-Orders: 304 (+11)
Pre-Orders Needed: 500
Months on the List: 11
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 9



My Two Cents:
For Angola fans ... the preorder climb has been a wild ride, but with double digit growth for two months in a row, and an average of 9 orders a month so far this year ... the trend is upward at a healthy pace at least.

The card mechanics in this one ... wow Jon Gautier's review here on BGG won me over with the description of card play alone. An unique and very interesting departure from the Igo-Ugo mindset.


The Buzz:

The Company Line:
Angola recreates a brief portion of the violent, decades-long Angolan civil war that began in the 1970s with the fall of a colonial power and dragged its bloody way into the 21st century thanks in part to cold war politics. Angola is a multi-player game in which players control the various Soviet- and US-backed factions that vied for control of Angola from 1975 to 1976. Originally released in limited quantities by Ragnar Brothers of the UK, Angola quickly became a rare and highly sought after game of almost cult status. Why? Angola features a number of innovative game systems that keep players guessing, create plenty of tension, and reward the right balance of boldness and caution. MMP is now updating this classic with the fabulous graphics of the IGS line of games and bringing it to a wider audiences.

The map is divided into areas, and units represent military formations and also special weapons, such as artillery, rockets, tanks, and airplanes. A unique command and activation system has players committing in secret to the order in which they will activate a limited number of their units for the turn. The players then take turns activating their units in the determined order. The result is like a tense game of poker, with players trying to analyze the map and out guess their enemies.

Retail Price: $75.00
Pre-Order Price: $56.25

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Designer: Phil Kendall
Developer: Adam Starkweather
Artwork: Lee Brimmicombe-Wood

Components:
- 2 decks of cards (110 total)
- 32 page full-color rulebook
- 2 player aid cards
- 22" by 34" inch map
- 3 countersheets
- 4 six-sided dice
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13. Board Game: Karelia '44 [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:4718]
Iain K
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Karelia '44

Total Pre-Orders: 392 (+15)
Pre-Orders Needed: 550
Months on the List: 6
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 26



My Two Cents:
Still doing well, but the growth rate dropped by 2/3rds in the April. Eventually, they're going to want to post some pictures.


The Buzz:

The Company Line:
Karelia ’44 is an operational level game that focuses on the last major campaign of the Russo-Finnish Continuation War (25 June 42—4 Sept 44). STAVKA planned an offensive during the summer of 1944 to coincide with the Normandy landings. The objective was to force Finland out of the war. Towards this end, the Soviets amassed two ground armies, one air army, and an impressive amount of artillery. Confident after a series of victories against the Germans, the Red Army attacked in Karelia on 9 June 44. The attack began with an overwhelming artillery barrage (second only to the Oder crossings in intensity). Finnish lines were pushed back and then breached—the race for Viipuri/Vyborg was on. The capture of this city would open the road to Helsinki.

The game features a unique “Boss Point” System which precludes either player from knowing how long the game will last. For the Russian player, this represents the gun to his head of an unhappy dictator who will gladly send you to a Gulag forever if you fail in your goals. For the Finns, you know that you are understrength and that the Russians will destroy you if given enough time, but you need to hang on for dear life in order to be in the best possible position when the Boss’ patience runs out.

Karelia '44 is the 14th game in the award winning Standard Combat Series. Emphasizing easy to play rules, SCS lets the player get right into the game!

Retail Price: $42.00
Pre-Order Price: $31.50

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Designer:
Developer:
Artwork:

Components:
- SCS Series Rulebook
- Specific Rulebook
- Two Full Color Play Aids
- Full Color Game Map
- 280 Counters
- 3 Scenarios
- Box and Dice
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14. Board Game: Baltic Gap [Average Rating:8.03 Overall Rank:2492]
Iain K
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Baltic Gap

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded, March 2009

My Two Cents:

The Buzz:

The Company Line:
Baltic Gap depicts the Soviet drive into Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania during the summer of 1944. As the game begins, the defense of Vitebsk, a Byelorussian fortified city located just a few hexes beyond the southeast corner of the playing surface, has just collapsed. 1st Baltic Front is advancing westward through the shredded German line, and will soon threaten all of Army Group North with encirclement. Finally, after four months of fierce battle, the Red Army will win the great prize of this campaign, Riga, and pocket the enemy in the Courland region of Latvia.

Baltic Gap is the 11th game in the award winning Operational Combat Series. It stays true to the ground breaking earlier games in the system that allow players a deeper glimpse into why the skills and behaviors of the two sides were so very different. Here in 1944, we find a much more developed Russian army (much more advanced than the one shown in the 2007 CSR Award winning game Case Blue) facing a still potent German Wehrmacht. The Germans will need to fight their forces with great skill to avoid getting swamped by their tough adversary.

Retail Price: $70.00
Pre-Order Price: $52.50

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Designer: John Kisner
Developer:
Artwork:

Components:
- OCS Series Rulebook
- Baltic Gap Specific Rulebook
- Two OCS Charts and Tables Booklets
- Two 22"x34" Full Color Game Maps
- Five countersheets (1,400 Counters)
- 8 Scenarios (3 are one map or less)
- Box and Dice
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15. Board Game: Guderian's Blitzkrieg II [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:2336] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
Iain K
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Guderian’s Blitzkrieg II

Total Pre-Orders: 321 (+12)
Pre-Orders Needed: 450
Months on the List: 6
Average Pre-Orders per Month, Year to Date: 19




My Two Cents:

The Buzz:
God I wish they'd make an SCS title based on this same campaign ... hoping A Victory Denied scratches that itch ...

The Company Line:
Guderian’s Blitzkrieg II depicts the German drive to capture Moscow in the fall of 1941 (Operation Typhoon) and the first Russian Winter Counteroffensive. In 1942, the German player can attempt another stab at Moscow, or conserve his strength to deal a death-blow to the November 1942 Russian offensive Operation Mars (as happened historically).

Guderian’s Blitzkrieg II is a reprint of the 8th game in the award winning Operational Combat Series. It mates with the 2007 CSR Award winning game Case Blue to show all of the Eastern Front south of Army Group North from 1 Oct 41 through the end of May 1943.

Owners of the 2001 printing of this game that have Case Blue do not need to purchase this printing. Owners that do not have Case Blue might be interested in this version because it incoporates the upgrades that occurred in Case Blue. In any event. The set ups, rules, and Orders of Arrival have been updated to the Case Blue Standards. Known errata in the original has been corrected.

Retail Price: $160
Pre-Order Price: $120

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=6...

Designer:
Developer:
Artwork:

Components:
- OCS Series Rulebook
- Guderian’s Blitzkrieg II Specific Rulebook
- Two OCS Charts and Tables Booklets
- Three 22"x34" Full Color Game Maps
- Four 22"x14" Full Color Game Maps (includes Moscow Blow Up Map)
- 2,800 Counters (7 sheets of units, 3 sheets of markers)
- 19 Scenarios (1 one map, 3 are two map games)
- Box and Dice
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16. Board Game: Battle Above the Clouds [Average Rating:8.09 Overall Rank:2364]
Iain K
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The Battle Above the Clouds

Pre-Order Goal Exceeded, March 2009


My Two Cents:
Surged at the end of March to pass it's goal in style, and just when Vassal is helping me get back in the GCACW system ... YES!

Finally fans have a chance to preorder a new member of the esteemed GCACW series, this time set in the Western theater. I can't say I'm excited about the price, but when have I been excited about anything's price? It would be like being excited about "detailed systems" (which I get my fill of at work) or "special rules". The new price is in line with the growing costs of two map, three counter sheet games. Given this game's 9 scenarios including notables like Chickamauga and Missionary Ridge, I know it will be worth the money. I'm not alone in that belief ...

The Buzz:
Ed Beach has been posting historical background filled "Sneak Peaks" with gorgeous map art right here on BGG:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/395706


MMP's Brian Youse has told us:

generally we'd expect 6-8 weeks after it hits for delivery as the size of this game makes printing easier.
Most delays are trying to coordinate countersheet print runs, this game is nearly a run on its own so less to coordinate = faster turnaround.


The Company Line:
Battle Above the Clouds is the 8th game in the award-winning Great Campaigns of the American Civil War (GCACW) series. This is the first game covering a western theater campaign and will serve as the core area for a series of maps covering the entire corridor from Nashville, Tennessee to Atlanta, Georgia. The game includes both the Chickamauga campaign of August/September, 1863 and the Chattanooga campaign of October/November of the same year.
Battle Above the Clouds includes a wide variety of engagements in the Basic Game scenarios. The seven actions include two introductory scenarios, a cavalry raid, a fighting withdrawal, a series of operational maneuvers through mountainous terrain, and two large battles:
- McLemore’s Cove (4 turns, September 10-13, 1863)
- Crossing Chickamauga Creek (1 turn, September 18, 1863)
- The Battle of Chickamauga (3 turns, September 18-20, 1863)
- Wheeler’s Raid (8 turns, September 29-October 6, 1863)
- Opening the Cracker Line (1 turn, October 28, 1863)
- Lookout Mountain & Missionary Ridge (2 turns, November 24-25, 1863)
- Ringgold Gap (2 turns, November 26-27, 1863)

The two Advanced Game scenarios cover both major periods of campaigning in the region:
-The Chickamauga Campaign (32 turns, August 29- September 29, 1863)
- The Siege of Chattanooga (40 turns, October 28-December 6, 1863)

Retail Price: $83.00
Pre-Order Price: $62.50

MMP website:
http://www.multimanpublishing.com/preorder/viewGame.php?id=7...

Designer: Ed Beach and Mike Belles
Developer: Ed Beach ?
Artwork: Charlie Kibler, creator of the legendary GCACW maps

Components:
- Series Rules Booklet (approx 24 pgs)
- Specific Rules Booklet (approx 48 pgs including scenarios/designer notes)
- Two 22"x32" full-color mapsheets (Click to see a map sample! (1.5Mb jpg))
- A full-color 11"x17" Off-Map Display
- Two full-color Force Displays
-Three Countersheets (Click to see a few counters!)
-Two 4-page color Charts and Tables
- Two 6-sided Dice
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17. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2204]
Iain K
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Unpublished Prototypes

Rumored to be in the MMP pipeline to Preorder are:

"Golan"
A new SCS title currently being playtested. I don't know if it's at a different scale than Yom Kippur or not, but I hope so. YK's application of the Standard Combat System to an almost grand tactical scale just did not work for me.


"King Philip's War"
Based on the colonial New England rebellion of the same name, this was demo'ed at MMP's January fling, Winter Offensive. I believe this is a CDG, but I can't find where that was specifically referenced.

The game's designer, John Poniske, has Leaping Lemmings on GMT's preorder list.


On March 22nd, IGS point guard Adam Starkweather told the CSW crowd about several upcoming preorders, writing:

IGS stuff up pretty soon (should be next month) are:

What Price Glory? (Tetsuya goes West Front WWI)
Ukraine '44 (Block game on Korsun Pocket)
King Philip's War
Last Stand (Mas' Typhoon game)
Storm over the Philippines (area/impulse w/cards on the Philippines 44-45).

Just waiting on art to put these on prepub...

Oh Special Ops #2 should have a cool smallish game on Operation Crusader (North Africa) by Tetsuya and a regular sized game by Suzuki on the Eastern Front (the whole shebang)

- consimworld March 22, 2009.

He's also been talking about a third member of the AVL / AVD family set in Hungary 1944/45 with the working title A Victory Approaches (AVA) - consimworld March 7, 2009.
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