Wargames: If you know war/battle/territory games, please advise me!
Justin Gortner
United States
Egg Harbor Township
New Jersey
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Hi,

Thanks for helping! I'm looking for the best wargames that fit the following qualities:

1. Can be played in 2 to 3 hours (+/- 1 hour)
2. Either (a) no die rolling mechanic OR (b) not a crazy amount of die rolling (some is okay of course. risk 2210 isn't bad, but axis and allies is a little too much)
3. More than a single type of unit
4. Accomodates 2 to at least 3 players if not more
5. Doesn't have to be human war or non-fiction (but it can)
6. Is of moderate difficulty level (i.e. original risk is too simple; machiavelli is too complicated)
7. Has at least a pinch of theme (nothing 100% abstract)

Basically I'm not a purist or anything. I'm just looking for a well rounded, FUN, playable, battle game that I can play with a wide range of people.

Thanks for your help! And don't be shy now, I won't flame you for posting something that might be off Thanks again.

JustinG
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1. Board Game: Wizard Kings [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:1750]
Michael Cox
Japan
Tokyo
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Wizard Kings is a good wargame.
1. Check
2. Some dice rolling but nothing like A&A
3. Check
4. Check
5. Check - With the extra armies you can have all kinds
6. May not be as moderate as you want but it is more complex than Risk
7. Lot's of theme, IMO.
 
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2. Board Game: Waterloo: Napoleon's Last Battle [Average Rating:6.08 Overall Rank:4947]
Joseph Cardarelli
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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This is a good game. Maybe not a true wargame, as far as grognards go, but a game of war nonetheless. No dice, as it applies a card mechanic. Not loved by many, but I think its a pretty good game. Scales from 2-3 also. Despite all its theme, I consider it pretty abstract.
 
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3. Board Game: World in War: Combined Arms 1939-1945 [Average Rating:6.57 Overall Rank:6045]
Karl Benisch
Sweden
Stockholm
Stockholm
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2 - 4 players
playable in 1 - 3 hours.
Great game with a unique battle system.
 
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4. Board Game: A Game of Thrones (first edition) [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:312]
Karl Benisch
Sweden
Stockholm
Stockholm
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3 - 6 players (with expansion)
Palyable in 1 - 5 hours

Great game with no dice. Get the expansion for the extra rules even if you don't plan to play any six player games
 
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5. Board Game: Shadows over Camelot [Average Rating:7.15 Overall Rank:320]
Karl Benisch
Sweden
Stockholm
Stockholm
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3 - 7 players
playable in 1 - 3 hours

Great game where the knights of the round table cooperate to defend camelot from the forces of evil.
 
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6. Board Game: Friedrich [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:469]
Mark Christopher
United States
Salem
Massachusetts
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In the wonderful game, Bonaparte at Marengo, this is how to get nasty Frenchies out of a village.
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Friedrich, for the most part, fits the bill.

* 2.5 - 4 hours so far in my experience
* Uses cards to resolve combat, in a neat resource-preservation kind of way
* Technically has 2 kinds of units, generals/armies and supply trains
* 3 - 4 players (we've played with 5 twice, though it's not recommended)
* 7 Years War in Europe
* 6 pages of rules
* Ooozes theme

My group keeps playing it, we can't get enough.
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7. Board Game: Wallenstein (first edition) [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:342]
Nick West
Scotland
Colinton
Edinburgh
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....and I'm not certain about the universe." Albert Einstein
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How about this? Works fine as a 3 player game, although improves with four. Have not played the unofficial 2 player varient(s) described in the BGG entry but see support that at least one of them plays out well - and no criticism.

It has enough theme to qualify, although cannot be viewed as a good simulation of the Thirty Years War.

It has area movement, area control and no dice (although the luck factor is not low, the "tower" battle resolution mechanism is cool).

It should be well within the top end of time limits suggested (we go about three and a half hours, but are a slow bunch).

Only downsides are maybe that:

i) the actual war part of the game is probably secondary to the building/taxing/Victory Point earning part. Each player can only initiate six battles maximum per year for two years - and fighting all the time is a sure way to lose.

ii) that you only fight two years of the War rather than to any sort of real conclusion. Some think the game stops just when it is starting to get interesting.

So, if you are looking for a slug-fest then look elsewhere.
 
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8. Board Game: Bonaparte at Marengo [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:1178]
David Bohnenberger
United States
Swarthmore
Pennsylvania
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Sounds like you're looking for this.
 
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9. Board Game: Nexus Ops [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:336]
Lorenzo Mele
Italy
Milano
Unspecified
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1- ok
2- it seems to me fit b) criteria
3- ok
4- ok
5- ok
6- ok
7- quite personal in this title
 
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10. Board Game: Empires of the Ancient World [Average Rating:6.62 Overall Rank:2858]
Darrell Hanning
United States
Jacksonville
Florida
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We will meet at the Hour of Scampering.
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This seems to fit all your criteria.
 
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11. Board Game: Struggle of Empires [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:330]
Kevin Rohrer
United States
Medina
Ohio
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It fits all your criteria. Game length is 30-45 per player and it can accomodate up to seven. Eagle Gasmes is republishing it.
 
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12. Board Game: Conquest of the Empire [Average Rating:6.75 Overall Rank:1134]
Alan Kaiser
United States
Aurora
Colorado
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This ones not out quite yet but with the advanced rules based on Struggle of Empires this one might actually be fairly decent. The basic rules are supposed to be similar (except for the catapults) to the original MB GameMasters game and those weren't too bad either.
 
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13. Board Game: Empires of Arcana [Average Rating:7.84 Unranked]
Thane Morgan
United States
Albuquerque
New Mexico
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Odd, the preview seemed to drop the name.
 
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14. Board Game: The Russian Campaign (fourth and fifth editions) [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:2668]
Michael Von Ahnen
United States
Dallas
Texas
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Not intended for more than two people, but because of the terrain, there is two fairly distinct areas of interest. It meets my criteria for a simple game (the rules are thinner than the counters), but it has complex strategies.

This will be at the high end of your time limit, especially when you first learn it.

This is my favorite wargame. I have the 2nd Edition.
 
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