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Subject: What Is Your Gaming Topic/Theme Obsession Lately? rss

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Eric Walters
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"...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
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I just got a pair of James Arnold books on the 1806-1807 campaign in Poland between Napoleon and Bennigsen and it made me drag out the following games onto the table:

Napoleon at Eylau
Napoleon's Art of War: Eylau and Dresden
Friedland
Clash of the Eagles: Borodino & Friedland
The Habit of Victory

Waiting in the wings are these:

The Coming Storm
La Bataille de Preussisch-Eylau
La Bataille de Friedland 1807 et le siège de Danzig 1807
1807: The Eagles Turn East

Funny thing is, I was on a Gazala (1942) tear not all that long ago and got through a few of the smaller games but didn't make it to/through the bigger ones. Let's just say I got distracted!

Does this happen to you? Do you find yourself obsessing on a period/topic and playing everything you can find that covers it? What makes you do it?
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Leo Zappa
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Not to this degree! I do often get caught up in a particular conflict either through reading a book or watching something on TV, and occasionally I will have a desire to follow up with a game on the same subject. However, if I am sufficiently motivated to play a game on the subject, it's usually just one game, before I go on to the next subject. I must have military history ADD!

*EDIT* - dang you, Eric...now you have me thinking (never a good thing)...

I am reading:


...and as a result, I just played:


...and now I'm thinking of breaking out this...


So, I suppose I'm more susceptible to theme obsession than I thought!
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Tim Korchnoi
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My Little Man's first real wargame play: Barbarossa Solitaire
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I know exactly what you mean.

Earlier this year I read about the Napoleonic Wars for the first time in ages and purchased (and played) practically all the Napoleonic 20 series of games and had a blast doing so.

At the moment, the Eastern Front is calling again as well as the European Theater of WWII in general as I am getting ready to try Unconditional Surrender! World War 2 in Europe after trying the Case Blue version in recent days.
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Jim Cote
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I slowly fell more and more in love with Federation Commander. I've played Star Fleet Battles very off and on since about 1990, but FedComm seems to strike the right balance between meat and tactical flexibility. The game is a blast. In fact, I've been listening to the last 6 years of the SFU On Call podcast, and getting into the universe so much that I also just ordered Federation & Empire. I have also started making FedComm tutorial videos.
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Rosecrans man
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I'd like to do the Bulge or a Pacific Theater game lately.
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Allen Dickerson
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(Still) the American Civil War.

I authored several VASSAL modules this year, and all the GMT Great Battles of the ACW titles are now represented, the first published actually being the last VASSALized: that was Three Days of Gettysburg, which I completed in late June, just in time for game play on the anniversary of the July 1 - 3 battle.

I've gotten more immersed than ever before. I also read four or five longish books: a Stonewall Jackson biography, a book on Jackson at Cedar Mountain, one each on both major Bull Run battles, and another on the battle of Chickamauga. Another one awaits on the battle of Stones River/Murfreesboro, while I churn through yet another on the war in Louisiana.

And just yesterday, I completed a re-viewing of Ken Burns' Civil War documentary.

Yeah, you can say it's an obsession.
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Nick Wade
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ericmwalters wrote:

Does this happen to you? Do you find yourself obsessing on a period/topic and playing everything you can find that covers it? What makes you do it?
OMG yes - with games and books!!

My current thing is WWII western front, so Normandy '44 on the table, and Hurtgen: Hell's Forest, The Pocket at Falaise, Liberty Roads, Storming the Reich and various Bulge games just wandering around in the background.

I've also been pretty interested in modern, particularly given world events, so Breaking the Chains: War in the South China Sea, Light Division, Next War: Taiwan, Red Dragon / Green Crescent, Dragon vs Bear: China vs Russia, Gulf Strike and various others have caught my interest at different times recently.

I've often wondered what makes me jump around obsessively from theme to them and have considered taking notes on what triggers the change. Sometimes it is because of something I have just read about or seen on TV, other times I just happen to notice a game in my collection or on a site that appeals, sometimes it is just random.

However, I know I do it a lot, hence why have absurdly large collections of books and games - when the fever strikes I like to have multiple options available right then and there!
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Carl Paradis
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I am a huge Napoleonic Wars fanatic, but somehow bizarrely, since I started designing games, I am almost exclusively delving into WW2, so much to cover in that huge topic. I still have a lot things "Russian Front" I want to do and play... surprise

This will certainly change when my WW2 game series is done: probably back to Napoleonic's; albeit I am also sloooowly moving towards making/playing some Medieval games. And some Naval stuff, too. meeple
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Ron A
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This certainly happpens to me, although this last instance took a slight twist on the subject, I've been hung up on a system, rather than a battle or campaign.

It started when a buddy taught me Up Front, which I'd never played before. I was fascinated. However, it isn't easy to get an actual copy of the game (yes, know about wargame vault), so I went and traded for Attack Sub, which is a close cousin to UF.

THEN, purely by happenstance, I was at a local con and got to try a prototype example of Tank Duel, which I describe as a mash up of Panzer (second edition), Patton's Best, and Up Front.
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suPUR DUEper
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I am on a Vietnam War kick. I didn't really know very much about it (probably still don't).

On my quest:

Got several DVD series from Amazon. Great to watch while working out.
Read 10,000 Day War1
Read Historical Atlas of the Vietnam War
Am currently digesting Karnow's Vietnam
McNamara's Memoir up next.

Played:
Vietnam 1965-1975
Hearts and Minds: Vietnam 1965-1975
Fire in the Lake
Vietnam Solitaire Special Edition
Tonkin: The Indochina war 1950-54 (second edition)

Next up:
In Country: Vietnam 1965-75
Dien Bien Phu: The Final Gamble

In the bull pen:
Victory in Vietnam
Storm Over Dien Bien Phu
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Clint Pewtress
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A sudden and bizarre urge for monster games.... Balance of Powers, Advanced PTO, The Battle for Normandy (with expansion, naturally), and WiF FE, all within the last 60 days....


blush
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Oh yeah. Boy, can I relate.

Latest obsession: American Civil War.

Currently reading: Battle Cry of Freedom by James McPherson
(Several other books are in my Kindle already; check out the Amazon sale if you haven't already!)

Games recently purchased:

Great Battles of the American Civil War
Twin Peaks
Dead of Winter (second edition)

Great Campaigns of the American Civil War
Stonewall Jackson's Way II
Stonewall in the Valley
Stonewall's Last Battle
Grant Takes Command
Battle Above the Clouds

Also looking to play:

The Civil War
The U.S. Civil War
For the People

I have to clear The Blitzkrieg Legend: The Battle for France, 1940 from my tables, then I can get into these. I have a lot of work to do in 2016!

Why did this happen? A few reasons.

First, I got burned out on WWII. I dive into that every so often and then feel like I can easily touch the bottom of that swimming pool, where it doesn't challenge me.

Second, I used to like the Civil War, played Mosby's Raiders, then got engrossed in WWII. WWII was, and probably always will be, my calling. Yet, I'm starting to wonder if I've learned all that I care to about it.

Third, there's so much to learn about the ACW, and so many ACW games to play! I was looking to get immersed in another subject, in any new game type really, and there were so many ACW games to get into, and at good prices. There was empty space on my shelves, and titles I had looked at in the past, so I figured I'd take the leap. Moreover, the history itself is more fascinating to me now than it ever was -- probably because, as I've realized in the past several years of current events, the history of the Civil War is still something we're grappling with today (in the USA, at any rate). Plus, the battlefields are accessible, and those visits are an important part of learning history for me.


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Nick Wade
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I feel much happier knowing that I share this problem with others...
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Sean McCormick
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Not so much a topic or theme as an approach--I've been very much getting to grips with Phil Eklund's designs, and am currently playing Pax Porfiriana, Greenland, and Pax Pamir. It's a bit reminiscent of what happened to me at the start of my wargaming career, when I bought ASL, couldn't make heads or tails of it, but found that my failed exposure to ASL helped me to understand SL much better. I kind of stumbled my way through Pax Porfiriana, but found it made Pax Pamir a much more accessible design. Having figured out Pamir, I'm keen to go back to Porfiriana with a better understanding of what the designs are trying to accomplish.
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suPUR DUEper
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seanmac wrote:
Not so much a topic or theme as an approach--I've been very much getting to grips with Phil Eklund's designs, and am currently playing Pax Porfiriana, Greenland, and Pax Pamir. It's a bit reminiscent of what happened to me at the start of my wargaming career, when I bought ASL, couldn't make heads or tails of it, but found that my failed exposure to ASL helped me to understand SL much better. I kind of stumbled my way through Pax Porfiriana, but found it made Pax Pamir a much more accessible design. Having figured out Pamir, I'm keen to go back to Porfiriana with a better understanding of what the designs are trying to accomplish.


I think I live at the intersection of Sierra Madre, Splotter, and strategic wargames. Games like: High Frontier, Pax, Bios Megafauna, Antiquity, Food Chain Magnate, Here I Stand, Virgin Queen, Totaler Krieg etc. give you a sandbox, an open ended gaming system which allows you to explore all manner of strategies.....
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Mike Szarka
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When it is your turn to send a VASSAL move, the wait is excruciating. When it's my turn, well, I've been busy.
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I've gotten very interested in the War of 1812. Not just because of the 200th anniversary, although it probably helped. Two good CDGs were released on the topic in 2012, which spurred me to more reading, and a desire to do a comparative review of every significant strategic level wargame on the subject, which would include:

Amateurs to Arms!
Mr. Madison's War: The Incredible War of 1812
War of 1812
1812: The Invasion of Canada
Rockets Red Glare (recently revised)
War of 1812

I have played them all except the revised version of Rockets Red Glare (although I played the original many years ago, the new version is on my bedside table) and I don't own the last game in the list from S&T #207.

If anyone has a copy of War of 1812 that they want to sell at a reasonable price to aid this project, let me know.
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Eric Walters
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"...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
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Past reading/gaming obsessions:

Operation MARKET-GARDEN: more books than I could list here. As far as the games go:

The Devil's Cauldron: The Battles for Arnhem and Nijmegen
Where Eagles Dare
It Never Snows
Screaming Eagles in Holland
Paul Koenig's Market Garden: Arnhem Bridge
Arnhem: Defiant Stand

I never did get back to playing:
Storm over Arnhem
Hell's Highway
Highway to the Reich (first and second editions)
A Bridge Too Far: ASL Historical Module 6

I didn't get to play these because I got too distracted by other things:
Highway to the Reich (third edition)
Arnhem: Defiant Stand
Oosterbeek Perimeter or even it's ASL counterpart:
Witches Cauldron: The Oosterbeek Perimeter – Arnhem 1944.

All things Stalingrad: So, so many titles. I'd played a bunch of them and didn't want to revisit quite a few, but here's what I played after reading David Glantz's trilogy on the battle/campaign:

Stalingrad Pocket II
Streets of Stalingrad (third edition)
Turning Point: Stalingrad
A Victory Lost
Wintergewitter

No, I didn't play these but should have:
Case Blue--Enemy at the Gates scenario
Fortress Stalingrad
Panzer Command
48th Panzer Korps
Battle for Stalingrad/Battle for Stalingrad

Wasn't going back to:
Winter Storm
Turning Point: The Battle of Stalingrad
Storm Over Stalingrad
Red Barricades: ASL Historical Module 1
Stalingrad! Valor of the 37th Guards
Combat Commander: Battle Pack #2 – Stalingrad

Need to play:
Into the Pocket!: Operation Winter Storm
Valor of the Guards: ASL Historical Module Number 7

Future game obsessions: it's just a matter of time:

There's been a good bit of books on the Western Front in 1944-45. So I should revisit some old favorites and try some new titles. So many I could mention. Given MMP's plethora of publishing on D-Day, that is definitely up there. I also want to do some more gaming on the race across France to the Westwall.

Ancients is pulling at me, Battles of the Age of Reason is tugging at me, and I've not done naval gaming in quite some some!

Priorities, priorities, priorities!

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Nick Wade
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TedW wrote:
I am on a Vietnam War kick. I didn't really know very much about it (probably still don't).

On my quest:

Got several DVD series from Amazon. Great to watch while working out.
Read 10,000 Day War1
Read Historical Atlas of the Vietnam War
Am currently digesting Karnow's Vietnam
McNamara's Memoir up next.

Played:
Vietnam 1965-1975
Hearts and Minds: Vietnam 1965-1975
Fire in the Lake
Vietnam Solitaire Special Edition
Tonkin: The Indochina war 1950-54 (second edition)

Next up:
In Country: Vietnam 1965-75
Dien Bien Phu: The Final Gamble

In the bull pen:
Victory in Vietnam
Storm Over Dien Bien Phu
Uh oh, I just watched Platoon...
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Jim Van Verth
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Age of Sail for me. Started playing with friends:


Then for some solo play, broke out my old copy of


Loved that so much I picked up


In the meantime, I got this through the Wargamers Pay Forward:

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