Recommend
7 
 Thumb up
 Hide
20 Posts

Wargames» Forums » General

Subject: MacArthur reading (and Pacific War games) rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Justin Jensen
United States
Fredericksburg
VA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
So, I was reading a Wall Street Journal review for the recently released The Most Dangerous Man in America by Mark Perry, and on thing the reviewer noted was that the book does not go into too much depth on 'island-hopping'.

I've always had an interest in the Pacific War in WWII, so I pose three questions to my fellow Grognards:

1) Best book overall on the topic? I have a feeling my old college textbook The Eagle against the Sun is probably it, and I just need to break it out again.

2) Best book on Douglas MAcArthur.

3) Best Pacific War games? I like the idea of a total overview, but they are probably too long. Something 2-2 1/2 hours? Or the best system for individual scenarios within the Pacific War?

Thanks for your thoughts!
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Adam Pfaff
United States
St Louis
Missouri
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945 might be good, but the campaign game is far longer than what you are looking for. There are many different shorter scenarios dealing with the Pacific War, which might interest you. Also, a second edition is in the works by Nuts! Publishing.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Skip Franklin
United States
Oklahoma City
OK
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Victory in the Pacific may be the best game for you.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim Ransom
United States
Jacksonville
Florida
flag msg tools
badge
This Memorial Day weekend, do not thank a veteran. Say a prayer of thanks for those in our military who gave their last full measure of devotion, and all their tomorrows, so that we could enjoy today and all OUR tomorrows.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
1) Tough one -- I also liked Eagle Against the Sun. If you've got the time, go with The History of US Naval Operations in WW2 by Samuel Elliot Morison. Don't worry, not all of the 15 volumes cover the Pacific campaign!


2) I will waffle and recommend two: Reminiscences (his autobiography), and American Caesar by William Manchester. It's fascinating to see how the man saw himself and tells his story as opposed to a noted historian (who was an island-hopping Marine himself).

3) I always loved Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945. But 2 other classics are Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 and Empire of the Sun.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Enrico Viglino
United States
Eugene
OR
flag msg tools
Slowed - BGG's moderation policies have driven me partially from here
badge
http://thegamebox.byethost15.com/smf/
Avatar
mb
Darksan wrote:
Victory in the Pacific may be the best game for you.


Still likely to run more than 3 hours. And very very abstract.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
flag msg tools
Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
badge
Hey, get your stinking cursor off my face! I got nukes, you know.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
jpr755 wrote:

2) I will waffle and recommend two: Reminiscences (his autobiography), and American Caesar by William Manchester. It's fascinating to see how the man saw himself and tells his story as opposed to a noted historian (who was an island-hopping Marine himself).

3) I always loved Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945. But 2 other classics are Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 and Empire of the Sun.


Second the Manchester book, very good. Also, Fire in the Sky is GREAT but will take longer than three hours.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
flag msg tools
Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
badge
Hey, get your stinking cursor off my face! I got nukes, you know.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
madslaust wrote:
So, I was reading a Wall Street Journal review for the recently released The Most Dangerous Man in America by Mark Perry, and on thing the reviewer noted was that the book does not go into too much depth on 'island-hopping'.!


Just occurs to me, one reason perhaps that Perry doesn't get into the island hopping is there wasn't as much of that in MacArthur's theater, the Southwest Pacific Area.

Most of the island hopping below was outside of his command, the only hopping in the SWPA was from New Guinea (which didn't involve a hop, started in Allied possession) to the Philippines and on to Borneo.

10 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jacovis
United States
Las Vegas
Nevada
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
MacArthur's War: Korea and the Undoing of an American Hero is an interesting book as well. Don't read it in isolation, but if you read another book on MacArthur, particularly the Manchester book, this one provides a different perspective to add to the mix along with his autobiography, as mentioned above.

Cheers!

2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Judd Vance
United States
Wichita
Kansas
flag msg tools
Every Man a (K-State) Wildcat!
badge
"Just get that sucka to the designated place at the designated time and I will gladly designate his ass...for dismemberment!" - Sho Nuff.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
madslaust wrote:


3) Best Pacific War games? I like the idea of a total overview, but they are probably too long. Something 2-2 1/2 hours? Or the best system for individual scenarios within the Pacific War?

Thanks for your thoughts!



The heavy hitters, such as Empire of the Sun, Asia Engulfed, and Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 are way too long for your time frame.

Victory in the Pacific is fun, but too abstract and gives you no feeling of fighting the historic battle.

The one I would recommend is Axis & Allies: Pacific. It is about 9-25 turns long: it cannot be longer than 25, and has the historic feel, as Japan will go for he historical objectives (Dutch East Indies, China, Burma, New Guinea, etc) and hold on to them because that is how they will win the game.

The rules overhead is low and should be more in line with what you are looking for.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rich M
United States
Greenwood
Indiana
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
3) Best Pacific War games? I like the idea of a total overview, but they are probably too long. Something 2-2 1/2 hours? Or the best system for individual scenarios within the Pacific War?

Well there is the new solitaire board game by DVG Games that is on pre-order right now, but going to print in the next month or two called FLEET COMMANDER NIMITZ. It might be right up your alley. Added picture of game box back. Here is the link for the game
http://www.dvg.com/.sc/ms/bdd/ee/51/Fleet%20Commander%20Nimi...



 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Smith
United States
Hillsborough
North Carolina
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
wifwendell wrote:
jpr755 wrote:

2) I will waffle and recommend two: Reminiscences (his autobiography), and American Caesar by William Manchester. It's fascinating to see how the man saw himself and tells his story as opposed to a noted historian (who was an island-hopping Marine himself).

3) I always loved Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945. But 2 other classics are Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 and Empire of the Sun.


Second the Manchester book, very good. Also, Fire in the Sky is GREAT but will take longer than three hours.


I've not read anything by Manchester that I did not like. Particularly powerful is memoir as a young Marine; Goodbye Darkness.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bill Lawson
United States
Rutland
Vermont
flag msg tools
Boston Redsox
badge
New England Patriots!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
American Caesar excellent
Pacific Fleet or Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Justin Jensen
United States
Fredericksburg
VA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
wifwendell wrote:
madslaust wrote:
So, I was reading a Wall Street Journal review for the recently released The Most Dangerous Man in America by Mark Perry, and on thing the reviewer noted was that the book does not go into too much depth on 'island-hopping'.!


Just occurs to me, one reason perhaps that Perry doesn't get into the island hopping is there wasn't as much of that in MacArthur's theater, the Southwest Pacific Area.

Most of the island hopping below was outside of his command, the only hopping in the SWPA was from New Guinea (which didn't involve a hop, started in Allied possession) to the Philippines and on to Borneo.



Fair point. The reason I mentioned it was because the review mentioned it was Mac's idea. But you're right that he may have come up with it, but without himself implementing it it's hard to tie him into it as well.

"No plan survives contact with the enemy" -- Helmuth von Moltke the Elder
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Walters
United States
Chesterfield
Virginia
flag msg tools
badge
"...the art of manoeuvering armies...an art which none may master by the light of nature. but to which, if he is to attain success, a man must serve a long apprenticeship." -- G.F.R. Henderson
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
madslaust wrote:


1) Best book overall on the topic? I have a feeling my old college textbook The Eagle against the Sun is probably it, and I just need to break it out again.

2) Best book on Douglas MAcArthur.

3) Best Pacific War games? I like the idea of a total overview, but they are probably too long. Something 2-2 1/2 hours? Or the best system for individual scenarios within the Pacific War?

Thanks for your thoughts!


I don't think you'll find a single book that does justice to the topic. Island hopping was practiced by both Nimitz in the Central Pacific and MacArthur in the SouthWestern Pacific. Given the tenor of your question, I'm guessing you are more interested in Mac. For good reason, given how successful he was.

I'd recommend the following book series, all available as free PDFs through the Center of Military History: The U.S. Army in The War in the Pacific (The U.S. Army in World War II series) at URL: http://www.history.army.mil/html/bookshelves/collect/ww2-ap....

MacArthur was a very, very complex personality. Manchester's book is a good overview, but to really dig into this, there is no substitute for D. Clayton James' trilogy, THE YEARS OF MACARTHUR. I found it superior in every respect.

As has been pointed out, you aren't going to find a Pacific War war-game that satisfied in 2-2 and a half hours, although Victory Games' WE MUST TELL THE EMPEROR is probably as close as it gets (and it's a solitaire game). If you are willing to devote a long afternoon to a day for a game, I'd recommend Columbia's PACIFIC VICTORY. If you can handle the mind-bending complexity of playing it, GMT's CDG EMPIRE OF THE SUN is pretty darned good, but takes a while to master even though the rules aren't that hard.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred Thomas
United States
Santa Rosa
California
flag msg tools
Space Battleship Yamato, Battlestar Galactica, Dilbert, Douglas Adams, The Tick
badge
Me ees Pearls Before Swine fan, but me no like zeeba neighba.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
madslaust wrote:


Fair point. The reason I mentioned it was because the review mentioned it was Mac's idea. But you're right that he may have come up with it, but without himself implementing it it's hard to tie him into it as well.


MacArthur did hop over a lot of Japanese garrisons in his area, but later on Australian lives were squandered mopping them up. He wanted to keep the Australians out of his main thrust to the Philippines. Some say it was to hog all the glory for the US, and Hastings (in Retribution) adds that the Australian units were unreliable at that point in the war so it was understandable that they would be relegated to sideshows. (Brute Force called it cleaning out the pig sty.)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Martin Gallo
United States
O'Fallon
Missouri
flag msg tools
badge
mbmbmbmbmb
Pacific Victory might fit.

Advanced Pacific Theater of Operations might do, but probably takes longer to play than you are ready for.

Pacific War is good for the operational side, but somehow the strategic (campaign) game that ties the various scenarios together is not working out for me. I am having a hard time getting what I remember of history to be reproduced. It is also loooong.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Sommers
United States
Clinton
New Jersey
flag msg tools
wifwendell wrote:
Just occurs to me, one reason perhaps that Perry doesn't get into the island hopping is there wasn't as much of that in MacArthur's theater, the Southwest Pacific Area.

From what I've read, MacArthur didn't get the concept of island hopping.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Sommers
United States
Clinton
New Jersey
flag msg tools
madslaust wrote:
wifwendell wrote:
madslaust wrote:
So, I was reading a Wall Street Journal review for the recently released The Most Dangerous Man in America by Mark Perry, and on thing the reviewer noted was that the book does not go into too much depth on 'island-hopping'.!

Just occurs to me, one reason perhaps that Perry doesn't get into the island hopping is there wasn't as much of that in MacArthur's theater, the Southwest Pacific Area.

Most of the island hopping below was outside of his command, the only hopping in the SWPA was from New Guinea (which didn't involve a hop, started in Allied possession) to the Philippines and on to Borneo.

Fair point. The reason I mentioned it was because the review mentioned it was Mac's idea. But you're right that he may have come up with it, but without himself implementing it it's hard to tie him into it as well.

From what I have read, MacArthur was adamantly opposed to the idea of bypassing any enemy position, and it was hard work to talk him into it. He even insisted on invading Rabaul initially.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Hoss Cartwright
United States
California
flag msg tools
Flat Top
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Fox
United States
Chandler
Arizona
flag msg tools
Fear cannot be banished, but it can be calm and without panic; it can be mitigated by reason and evaluation.
badge
A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals, and you know it.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan 1941-1945 for the operational scenarios. They run the gamut from 30 minutes to 25 hours. The full campaign game isn't generally recommended.

Empire of the Sun for the strategic scenarios. It works well as a full war game, and as individual yearly scenarios. The design balance is holding up very well over many plays.

Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945 for the strategic game if you don't like the idea of a deck of cards driving your operations. Unlike Empire of the Sun, the game is fairly static in its play lines.
2 
 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.