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Subject: Military / Ex-Military Gamers rss

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Iain Blackwood
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Any military / ex-military gamers out there? I personally served 4 years in the Royal Signals (British Army). Also did a tour of Afghanistan in 2009.

If so, any military themed games you would recommend that you play or have played?
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Harry Leevers
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Former Britmil here.

For solo play, I think A Distant Plain and Fire in the Lake from the COIN series are great.

Cheers,

H
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Pete Belli
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Welcome to BGG.
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Cracky McCracken
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Welcome Newuser! Not military but willing to chip in.

What era of warfare are you interested in most? Do you like tactical games or large scale, grand strategy games?

I've got No Retreat! The Russian Front on the table right now. Very good WW2 East Front sim, covers the whole thing.

Edit.... The whole No Retreat series is great so far.... Check out GMT Games, they're fantastic! All their wargames are high quality...
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Iain Blackwood
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Cracky wrote:
What era of warfare are you interested in most? Do you like tactical games or large scale, grand strategy games?


Well I know of the miniature war-games like Bolt Action, Warhammer 40k (for fantasy themes) etc. I guess I am looking for both tactical and large scale strategy games. I am totally new to this, and really interested in finding excellent and potentially long winded games. Ones that last a campaign or evolve over time with each play.

Someone over in the other forum mentioned VASSAL? Is that correct? Not sure what that is but they said to mention it here for more info
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Bob Zurunkel
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If you want a large scale strategy game, go for World in Flames.

ETA: not military or ex-military, just recommending a game.
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Wolfram Troeder
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GAF, Captain Artillery, ret.
If you are starting have a look at the C&C games. No better entry level wargame. And for almost all timeframes there is a game available. Or some fine fellow Geek doing strange scenarios (Thanks, Pete!).
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Randy Smith
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Retired USAF here. I will second the Commands and Colors games by Richard Borg.

They are easy to learn, informative, and if you can play one of them, it is only a small matter to learn the rules for the others.
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Ryan Witmer
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I was enlisted in the US Marine Corps for four years.

That experience gives me a certain level of enjoyment from low-level tactical games. Up Front is particularly awesome, as is Combat Commander.

My real passion is high-level strategic games, the bigger and more complicated the better. I play some of the notable "monsters" like World in Flames and its variants. Federation and Empire (Star Trek galactic war game) is my current thing. These games are great but are a significant time investment, both in learning and playing, as games can easily run 100 hours or more.

The stuff in between, the so-called operational scale games, just bores me to tears. Some people really seem to like them, though.

I'm fortunate enough to have a wife who will also play these games with me, and she usually wins.
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Jim Ransom
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Blacky47 wrote:
Any military / ex-military gamers out there? I personally served 4 years in the Royal Signals (British Army). Also did a tour of Afghanistan in 2009.

If so, any military themed games you would recommend that you play or have played?


There are a lot of us here on BGG. Welcome -- this is a great resource for the budding wargamer as well as for the old-timers. Plenty of people willing to answer your questions, many of which have been asked before.

The key is to find a topic or theme that interests you, and then dive in. Below are a couple of threads and geeklists worth looking at to help you in your quest. I'm sure others can add a few more.

Wargame/Wargaming Grasshopper, Noob, Rookie, Padawan List

Wargames??? YES YOU CAN!

Wargamer's Guide to Wargaming Geeklists

Solitaire War Games

BGG wargames subdomain FAQ, references and general mayhem



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Lance McMillan
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Retired US Navy officer (25 years). My favorite naval games are Victory at Midway and Solomon Sea.
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Iain Blackwood
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It's great to see so many people into war-games from both a military and non military background

Tell me this, are any of these games online based for groups separated by distance to play? i don't think there are gamers near me (Northern Ireland) that would maybe be interested in large scale games or these types of games, (if I am wrong, please correct me!).

Are large scale online campaigns common?
 
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Leo Zappa
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Former U.S. Army captain (Cold War era). I have a strong preference for operational scale games. Always found it too hard to relate tactical scale wargames to reality, though I will still give Panzerblitz a spin every once in a while. I think you'll find that even among us wargamers with a military background there is a wildly varying range of tastes in wargames. I know in my case, I started wargaming before I ever joined the Army, so there's not actually that much overlap between the two (hell, I love naval wargames but I hate Navy, at least during football season!)

Welcome aboard!
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Wolfram Troeder
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Blacky47 wrote:
It's great to see so many people into war-games from both a military and non military background

Tell me this, are any of these games online based for groups separated by distance to play? i don't think there are gamers near me (Northern Ireland) that would maybe be interested in large scale games or these types of games, (if I am wrong, please correct me!).

Are large scale online campaigns common?


M'44 Online at: https://www.daysofwonder.com/memoir44-online/en/
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Carl Fung
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Blacky47 wrote:
It's great to see so many people into war-games from both a military and non military background

Tell me this, are any of these games online based for groups separated by distance to play? i don't think there are gamers near me (Northern Ireland) that would maybe be interested in large scale games or these types of games, (if I am wrong, please correct me!).

Are large scale online campaigns common?


Many of the board wargames have an electronic equivalent built on the VASSAL platform. VASSAL allows you to play board wargames on the computer either live or saving a game play then sending it to the opponent. Playing live is typically done through Skype or another audio/video communication tool where you and your opponent will move game pieces and the other side immediately sees it on their screen.

http://www.vassalengine.org/

Click the modules tab to see the tons of games available for VASSAL.
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Jim Ransom
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desertfox2004 wrote:
I hate Navy, at least during football season!


You wound me, Sir!
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Philip Bolger
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Blacky47 wrote:
It's great to see so many people into war-games from both a military and non military background

Tell me this, are any of these games online based for groups separated by distance to play? i don't think there are gamers near me (Northern Ireland) that would maybe be interested in large scale games or these types of games, (if I am wrong, please correct me!).

Are large scale online campaigns common?


First, I'm former US Army-- served 2010-2015, and did a tour in Ghazni province about halfway through that (2012-2013).

Can't speak to online, but I can tell you that potential wargamers are everywhere-- it's just that most of them don't know it, and the ones that do tend to talk themselves into believing there's no one will play these games with them, anyway (so you're comfortably ahead of them).

I've had luck introducing friends and family through Hammer of the Scots and more recently Moscow '41. These are both relatively simply operational-level block games. Based on your interests, I'd consider looking into M41. There's a lot of individual units, but the mechanics are simple enough to teach.

That won't necessarily scratch your large-scale itch, but it will plant the seeds for the beginnings of a good face-to-face group, if you so choose.

Hope this helps!
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Iain Blackwood
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Hammer of the Scots looks really interesting to me, since I am Scottish and a Highlander! (Albeit, just living in Northern Ireland).

My fiance loves to play tabletop games but I think wargames may be a stretch for her... maybe this can help swing it.
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Geoffrey Burrell
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Leo Zappa
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jpr755 wrote:
desertfox2004 wrote:
I hate Navy, at least during football season!


You wound me, Sir!


I'd be less annoyed if we could just beat you guys once in a while!
angry
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Jim Ransom
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desertfox2004 wrote:
jpr755 wrote:
desertfox2004 wrote:
I hate Navy, at least during football season!


You wound me, Sir!


I'd be less annoyed if we could just beat you guys once in a while!
angry


All Good Things Must Come to an End.

Just please not this year...
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Jason Sadler
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I lat moved from USMC Light Armored Recon to the 1st Civ Div back in 2012 after GWOTing all over. I run into former service, reservists, and guardsmen everywhere I go to play wargames.

Welcome to cardboard country.

Go Navy(and Marine Corps) beat Army!


Edit: Were you in Helmand in 2009? I was mostly in Reg District in 2009. Maybe we walked right past each other when the Yanks were over on Bastion trying to get beer and curry.
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Paul Kreutzet
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Also keep in mind what military perspectives and design values military veterans bring to wargaming.

As a cold war/lil' gulf war Army veteran, with later Afghanistan experience, I look at wargames from both a military history and operational simulation effectiveness perspective. Are the resources and goals for both sides clear? Are some more achievable than others? What are the consequences of failure/missed opportunities? When is it right to use a bold move as force multiplier, and when to watch an unfavorable turn for the enemy unfold? What are the logistics and morale factors? How much game detail is appropriate to the player's level of simulation (a point I feel monster games fail at). And, what is a military commander likely to seek to accomplish (this point especially for wargame design).
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Paul Spak
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jpr755 wrote:
desertfox2004 wrote:
jpr755 wrote:
desertfox2004 wrote:
I hate Navy, at least during football season!


You wound me, Sir!


I'd be less annoyed if we could just beat you guys once in a while!
:angry:


All Good Things Must Come to an End.

Just please not this year...


USAF; four years peace-time back in the age of the dinosaur, (OK - the Reagan admin) and our football team has been pretty tough for the last decade or so.
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Wendell
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