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Subject: Help me get into wargaming! rss

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Antonio Chavez
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Reading about the Blackbeard reprint made me look at the P500 page (I P500ed it). I then noticed Twilight Struggle and Europe Engulfed... heck, I thought, they'll probably won't be released for a couple of years yet... and I preordered them (based mostly on their rep here on BGG and my undying love of Axis and Allies). And then I started perusing the GMT catalog. I fear I may heve been bitten by the bug.

In short, I will be ordering Gringo soon (and have P500ed the expansion, Battles with the Gringos) mainly because of an interest in the period. Plus, I hunted down a copy of Ambush via eBay.

With all those preliminaries, I ask you: What is the best wargame/system for someone who wants to start on the hobby? My requirements:
-Should play extremely well solo; I probably won't have a partner for a few years (until my 3-year-old is old enough to join me... provided he wants to).
-Preferably, with scenarios that can be played in 2-3 hours. The aforementioned toddler doesn't leave me a lot of free time, and makes any attempt to leave a game set up moot at best (and potentially catastrophic at worst).
-Historical period is no problem; I like history in all of its presentations.
-Rules complexity is no problem; I'm one of those persons that actually read gaming manuals for fun.
-Cardboars is fine, but I much prefer blocks. I'm kind of a "bits" person, altough I prefer blocks to miniatures. It's that "Boy, I actually feel like Napoleon planning a campaign" feeling.

So, any nominees? Please, help me start down on the path of destruction.

Thanks

Antonio
 
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Kevin Moody
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Twilight Struggle and EE aren't very solo friendly, but they're both popular and you should consider playing them via some online software (like Cyberboard, VASSAL, ACTS, wargameroom) against "real" opponents.

Gringo is going to be more complex, but should work well solo.

The new A Victory Lost is my clear pick for a "beginner" game. Just one scenario, but you will probably play it numerous times. It plays solo very well, but playing it face-to-face (FTF) is a real treat, as it offers lots of options for each player that can be hard to anticipate. There's a very well-designed VASSAL module for it, and if you don't have time to play it online live, it plays extrememley well in play-by-email (PBeM) mode.

You'll probably have a couple of dozen recommendations. Pick whatever situation appeals to you the most.
 
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anoni mouse
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From what you already done it sounds like you are doing a good job getting your own destruction going. In addition to the GMT games(a ton of great games there) you could alway look at ASL( Advance Squad Leader) or ATS (Advanced Tobruk System) a good chunk of info on the two can be found here http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/129681

Edit: spelling
 
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Mark Christopher
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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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While I've never played the solitaire rules (though I've heard they're good), Bonaparte at Marengo fits the rest of your criteria, right down to the "Napoleon planning..." comment.
 
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Antonio Chavez
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markus_kt wrote:
While I've never played the solitaire rules (though I've heard they're good), Bonaparte at Marengo fits the rest of your criteria, right down to the "Napoleon planning..." comment.


Yup, BaM and Hammer of the Scots are on the pipeline; hopefully they'll be under the Christmas tree ... but I'm kinda trying to go more hardcore (if that makes any sense).
 
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Brad Wagnon
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I just put in an order for Silent War. It is going OOP, but is still available thru Compass Games website, and I think there are also a couple of copies hiding at one of the regular online retailers.

It seems to be a fairly heavy game, but I thought of this title when you indicated that your have a future Grognard in Training. The game seems to be a solo game, but up to 3 players can play. The playing pieces are definitly NOT a 1/2 inch square.

Might be fun to show your young one how to play games in conjunction with, as opposed to against Dad. BTW, I think a couple of people have posted that Ambush also plays well with two players in a semi-cooperative mode.

Hope that helps!

Edit: Added the following

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/17484

And, according to their website, a new Silent War game is coming out for the Atlantic. Furthermore, links on the BGG review lead to downloadable additions to the original Silent War with what looks to be a second campaign.

I must go now, as I am beginning to drool...counting the days till I get my new shiny copy of the game!

Game ON!



 
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Phillip Heaton
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Since you live outside the US, you might be interested in games on the internet, where you don't have to pay an arm and a leg for postage. Search geeklists for "print-and-play". These lists are kept updated and list the games that you can download for free, or a small fee. There are some good games there, amongst the garbage.

Check out the following geeklists: Lista Introductoria de Wargames en Castellano (in Spanish), Celebrating Wargames (a look at what the three Main Genres - Blocks, CDGs and Hex and Counters - can offer), Latin American Wargames, Free Wargames!

For your information, I've been assembling a list of solitaire games on BGG. I hope this helps (a number of them are wargames):

007 James Bond - The Man With the Golden Gun
1862, The Battles and Leaders Series
1914: Opening Moves
1944: Second Front
4 CYTE (Foresight)
6 Pack of Paper & Pencil Games, the
A Dark and Bloody Ground
A Fearful Slaughter: The Battle of Shiloh
Age of Heroes
Al Cabohne
Alaric The Goth: Fall of the Western Roman Empire
Alien Armada
Alpha Playing Cards
Alphabok
Ambush!
Ambush! - Move Out!
Ambush! - Purple Heart
Ambush! - Silver Star
American Megafauna
Andersonville
Assyrian Wars
AstroNavis Merchant
AstroNavis Merchant Advanced
Austerlitz
Autobridge
B-17: Queen of the Skies
Bali
Barbarian Prince
Barbarian, Kingdom & Empire
Barbarians
Barbarossa Campaign
Barbarossa Solitaire
Bataille D'Auerstaedt, La
Bataille de Ligny, La
Bataille de York 1813, La
Bataille d'Orthez, La
Battle Hymn
Battle Hymn - Leatherneck
Battle of the Atlantic
Battle Platform Antilles
Beyond Solitaire
Blackbeard
Book of Classic Board Games
Bowling Solitaire
Bridge for One
Build Puzzle Town
BuyWord

Campaign for Guadalcanal
Capes & Cowls: The Superhero Board Game
Carcassonne - The City
Cardmaster: Adventure Design Deck
Carrier
Carrier War: the War in the Pacific 1941-1945
Carthage - The Ancient World: Vol. II
Castle Merchants
Castle, The
Catherine the Great
Caves & Claws
Challenge Series Strategy Boxing
Challenge sudoku
Championship Auto Racing
Chaos Tiles
Chee Chow: The Mystic Seven
ChickenFoot
Choice
City of Chaos
Clash of Giants
Coffee
Commando
Conquerors, The: Alexander the Great
Counter All Terrorists!
Crète 1941
CrossCribb
Cthulhu Mash
DAK2
Damocles Mission
Dan Fortune - From the Casebook of Michael Collins
Dawn of the Dead
D-Day: The Great Crusade
D-Day: Normandy 1944
Death Test
Desert Rats
Divine Right
Dodecaedron
Downfall: If the U.S. Invaded Japan, 1945
Downtown: Air War Over Hanoi, 1965-1972
Dragon Master
Dream Team
Dungeon Bash
Eagle Eye Agency
Eastern Front Solitaire
Ebbe & Flut
Empires of Arcana
Escape from Dinosaur Island
Europa Universalis
Factory Fun
Fairy Tale
Fall of Constantinople
Fall of Rome, The
Fantastic Encounters
Fear God & Dread Nought
Feurio!
Fields of Fire
Fields of Glory : Oudenarde & Malplaquet
Fighting General Patton
First Day of the Somme
Flying Colors
For Honor and Glory: War of 1812 Land and Naval Battles
Fortress Berlin
France 1944: The Allied Crusade in Europe
Frank's Zoo
Frederick the Great
Frigate
From the Casebook of Nick Velvet
Full Time
Fury of Dracula
Galactic Destiny
Galaxy
Gladstone's Games to Go
Glory II: Across the Rappahannock
Go Tell The Spartans
Grail Quest
Great Downhill Ski Game, The
Greyhawk: Wars
Gunslinger
Haar Hoolim Perception Games
Harvest of Death - The Second Day at Gettysburg
Hegemon
Hentacle
Herd Your Horses
Hetzer Sniper! - Sniper Companion Game #1
Heximoes
History of the Roman Empire
Hornet Leader
Hornet Leader II
Hornet Leader II - Cold War
Illuminati: New World Order
Im Märchenwald
Imperator
Imperium Romanum II
Indochine 2000
Infantry Combat: The Rifle Platoon
Ingenious
Intersect 90
Into a Bear Trap
Intruder
Island Of D
Island Of D 2: The Shadow of Dawn
Iwo Jima
J.U.M.P. Into the Unknown
James Bond 007 Assault Game
Karambolage
Kartenspiele im Wilden Westen
Khe Sanh, 1968
King's Blood
Knights of Camelot
La Bataille de les Quatre Bras
La guerre de Troie
La vallée de la mort
Last Battles: East Prussia, 1945
Last Blitzkrieg, the
Last Frontier: The Vesuvius Incident
Leuthen (VaeVictis n°32)
Lexicon
LODZ 1914: FIRST BLITZKRIEG (Moments in History)
London's Burning
Lords of Underearth, the
Lucky Seven
Maharaja
Mem
Men of Iron - Volume I : The Rebirth of Infantry
micropul
MiG Killers
Mosby's Raiders
Mystic Wood
Mystic Wood Extension Kit
Napoleon at the Berezina
NATO Division Commander
Naval Warfare - World War 1
Nertz
Nightmare House
NWS: Nights of Fury - Guadalcanal Naval Battles
Objective Moscow: the Death of Soviet Communism
Oceania
Octiles
Ogre
Onslaught to Orsha
Open Fire
Opération Apocalypse
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Operation Olympic
Outdoor Survival
Outremer
Pacific War
Parfumaster
Patience
Patrol
Patton's Best
Pax Romana
Pegasus Bridge
Peloponnesian War
Pennant Race
Perfection
Pferdemist
Phantasy Realm
Piece Packing Pirates
Pizza Box Football
Prophecy
Prussia's Glory II
Puppy Lake
Queen Victoria's Navy
Queries 'n Theories
Quest Cards
Quest For Power
Quiddler
RAF
Raid on St. Nazaire
Ranger
Rebel Yell
Red Christmas
Redemption: City of Bondage
Reds! The Russian Civil War 1918-1921
Reichstag: The Fall of Berlin
Retro -- Tactical WWII Wargame Variant Rules
Return of the Heroes
Return of the Stainless Steel Rat, the
Rise and Fall
Rise of the Roman Republic, the - The Ancient World: Vol. 1
Road to the Rhine
Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers
Royalists & Roundheads II
Runebound Second Edition
Russian Civil War
Safe Return Doubtful
Saipan
Sea of Dragons
Sedan Campaign, 1870, The
Sergeants! on the Eastern front
Seven Days Battles
Shell Shock!
Shootout Pro Soccer
Siege of Leningrad: Logistics Module I
Silent War
Sink the Bismarck!
Sixth Fleet
Sly
Smokejumpers
Smugglers of the Galaxy
Solitaire
Solitaire ASL
Solitaire Caesar
SoloQuest
Space Hulk
Space Race Expansion Kit
SPQR
Sprouts
Star Explorer
Star Fleet Battles - Module S2: Scenario Book #2
Star Smuggler
Starship Catan
Steel Wolves - The German Submarine Campaign Against Allied ...
Sticks & Stones
St-Lô
Stubborn
Submarine
Successors
SuDoKu - Battle Lines
SuDoku: Das Kartenspiel
Suleiman the Magnificent
Superstar Lineup Talking Football
Swords & Sorcery
Ta Yü
Tactician Simulated Sailing
Tahiti: Clan Warfare, Polynesia 750 AD
Tales of the Arabian Nights
Tangoes
Tantrix
Tantrix Discovery
Tarawa
Thunderbolt/Apache Leader
Time Tripper
Title Bout
Tokyo Express
Tranquility Base
Triumph and Fall of the Desert Fox
Triumphant Return: The Soviet Liberation of Kiev, November 1943
Trucks, Trains, Boats and Planes game
Typo
Tyrannosaurus Wrecks
Vanished Planet
Varsity Gridiron Football
Venturers in Argent
Viceroys
Vietnam Solitaire
Volcano
Von Manstein's Backhand Blow
Voyage of the B.S.M. Pandora
Vulkan!
War in Europe Second Edition
Warbirds in Miniature
Warhammer Quest
We the People
Winds Of Plunder
Wings
Wings of War - Burning Drachens
Wings Over France
Wolfpack
Wordigo
Zero!
 
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Michael Lawson
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Mr.Baggins wrote:
markus_kt wrote:
While I've never played the solitaire rules (though I've heard they're good), Bonaparte at Marengo fits the rest of your criteria, right down to the "Napoleon planning..." comment.


Yup, BaM and Hammer of the Scots are on the pipeline; hopefully they'll be under the Christmas tree ... but I'm kinda trying to go more hardcore (if that makes any sense).


Yeah, it makes sense.

However, if you want your 3 year old to join you sooner, you might want to grab a copy of Memoir '44 and use either the Young Generals' rules (only use the direction cards) or the system I like to use with my 5 year old son: you move one unit, then I move one unit. If things work out, you'll have a wargamer before you know it.
 
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Sam Carroll
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As long as you're P500ing, why don't you place an order for Asia Engulfed? I fully expect it to be ridiculously good. You can check out the Consimworld forum, which has lots of information about AE. Besides, it won't take too long to come out, and you can help it along the way!

Hmmm. Maybe my post isn't entirely altruistic - maybe I'm trying to get AE more orders so it comes to me sooner . . . but please order it anyway!
 
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bill betts
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I would also suggest A Victory Lost and AfrikaII both by MMP. Both also affordable. Both games are very entertaining and playable in a reasonable time.
 
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Steve Herron
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The American Revolution Series by GMT (except Savannah) would be good to start with. Also Avalon Hill's older games Afrika Korps and Waterloo on Eaby are good beginer games, also the new issue of A House Divided is a good choice. Gringo I believe might be a bit more complex to start with. If you can get it on Ebay or else where Avalon Hill's Battle Cry would be good. You might be able to design you own scenairos of the American-Mexican War using Battle Cry. It may sound wierd to you but The Alamo by Decision Games is an excellent solitaire game if you are interested in Mexican/US conflicts. Good Luck Amigo!:
 
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Ken Feldman
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The Forward Observer discussion group did a good job identifying some good introductory wargames. Check out the Geeklist here:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/12200

Ken
 
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Donald Wilbur III
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I was in the same situation as you about 6 months ago and here's what I bought:

Paths of Glory
A House Divided
Wilderness War
Hammer of the Scots
Imperium

All of these are desighned as two player games, but make for enjoyable solo play in my view. Yes, head-to-head would probably be even better, but many hours of solo fun can be had from these titles.

Twilight Struggle may or may not work (I'll find out this weekend), but I see no reason why Europe Engulfed wouldn't make for a very enjoyable solo experience. Just play both sides to the best of your ability.
 
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Nicolas Eskubi
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I would also suggest A Victory Lost, easy to learn and would have lot of fun and A las Barricadas! the game would be available this week, easy to learn too, only 9 page rules and the scenarios can be played between one hour and a half to two hours, you can download right now a demo to test the game www.earstormseries.es both games are great ones to start on the hobby. Hop e I help you

Best
Niko
 
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Trevor Murphy
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It's great that you're excited about Gringo, but don't be surprised if it's a bit overwhelming at first. Berg games can be very... detailed. My first (ordered) wargame was Rise of the Roman Republic, which (despite a wonderful theme) I still haven't tried to this day due to its complexity. Simpler games provided an easier introduction to the genre, in my case. RRR's day will come...
 
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Antonio Chavez
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Wow, thanks for all the great suggestions. After much perusal, I'll be ordering A Victory Lost and Afrika II; and if Europe Engulfed ships this year, I'll take advantage of GMT's offer and order Paths of Glory for half the price.

I did P500 Asia Engulfed. In the darkest recesses of my brain, I have visions of setting it up next to EE and playing the whole war in one sitting (which, as I understand, it is designed for. Well, except for the "one sitting" part, I guess).

I do have Memoir 44, and the boy already loves it (in a "let's make a huge conga line of soldiers" way, but I'm guessing that's as good a start as any). But for some reason the game doesn't click with me... weird, as I really liked Battle Cry. And for that reason, I'm sitting on the fence about C&C:A.

Anyway, thanks for all the suggestions, and if there are any more, by all means, keep them coming. I will be buying more games in the future, after all






 
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Phillip Heaton
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Mr.Baggins wrote:
I do have Memoir 44, and the boy already loves it (in a "let's make a huge conga line of soldiers" way, but I'm guessing that's as good a start as any). But for some reason the game doesn't click with me... weird, as I really liked Battle Cry. And for that reason, I'm sitting on the fence about C&C:A.


I can understand why you don't like Memoir '44. The Command & Colors system doesn't feel right for WWII. Treating every tank unit the same, artillery that isn't integrated into the units at this level, fast infantry and lack of command control all lead to a feel of "This just isn't right".

However, if you liked Battle Cry, you should enjoy Command & Colors: Ancients. There is a wide range of history that the game can simulate; most people take the ancient period (for wargaming only) to run from 3000 BC to 1500 AD. They have made improvements to the system from Battle Cry, so it is easier to maintain a battle line. The only downside to many people is the wooden blocks instead of miniatures, and you can fix that yourself.

You might also enjoy the Wars of America series, by Worthington Games. They use a very similar system, but use action points instead of the cards to determine who can move and fight. The first game in the series is: Clash for a Continent: Battles of the American Revolution and French & Indian War. The second game in the series is: For Honor and Glory: War of 1812 Land and Naval Battles. They are working on a third game in the series, about the Mexican-American War.
 
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Aaron Silverman
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Note that people have been recommending a lot of block games and card games that many folks (myself included) consider pretty worthless for solitaire play. Also, it will be MANY years before your son is ready for something like Europe Engulfed or Paths of Glory. Do your own research on that topic before ordering games like that.

I recommend Avalanche's Panzer Grenadier series. The new 3rd edition rules are very good, and there are literally hundreds of different scenarios, many of which only take a couple of hours to play. It's perfectly fine solitaire, too. The ASL Starter Kits are in the same boat, but are a little more complex and have fewer scenarios available (although the existing scenarios tend to be very heavily playtested -- the PG system scenarios range widely in quality).
 
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Aaron Silverman
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re: Memoir '44, I haven't played it with the expansions yet, but I have heard from people who weren't thrilled with the base game that they really add a lot of flavor.
 
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Christophe Sancy
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gilesclone wrote:
I was in the same situation as you about 6 months ago and here's what I bought:

Paths of Glory
A House Divided
Wilderness War
Hammer of the Scots
Imperium

.


A perfect selection. Couldn'be better. I would start with A House Divided. And add Columbia's reprint of good ol' AH's Napoleon.
 
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