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Subject: Article : A Wargame 55 Years in the Making rss

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Eddy Sterckx
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Pretty interesting read.

Part 1:
http://general-staff.com/a-wargame-55-years-in-the-making/

Part 2:
http://general-staff.com/a-wargame-55-years-in-the-making-pa...
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Robert Wesley
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It would have taken much longer had HE also "scratch-built" assorted 'miniatures' for ALL of his! I'm not even 'completed' every KINDS yet.
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Etien
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I retitle this article, "From Tactics II to the Five Canonical Offensive Maneuvers: One Man's Story of Computational Military Reasoning" by D. Ezra Sidran, Ph.D.
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Pelle Nilsson
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I stumbled upon some of his older blog posts some month ago when googling for Kriegsspiel maps.

Enjoyed the article and I look forward to that game, but I do not approve of the FUD he spreads about Dijkstra's. It is a great algorithm for finding the shortest paths from one node to many/all others. And only the most naive implementation no one would use in practice has the (expected) bad square complexity mentioned in the article.
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Chris Carnes
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I was never so pissed off at computer games as I was at his UMS I&II and War College games. Let's hope this effort is better.
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Eddy Sterckx
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pelni wrote:
but I do not approve of the FUD he spreads about Dijkstra's. It is a great algorithm for finding the shortest paths from one node to many/all others. And only the most naive implementation no one would use in practice has the (expected) bad square complexity mentioned in the article.


Wildly off-topic here but I'm a fan of the A* algorithm for shortest path - got full code for an implementation of it I wrote in Delphi (object oriented Pascal) - if anybody is interested just gm me.
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Johnny Wilson
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Blackhorse wrote:
I was never so pissed off at computer games as I was at his UMS I&II and War College games. Let's hope this effort is better.


Universal Military Simulator I, huh? What's the matter? Don't you like battlefields without water? I remember Ezra showing us the beta of UMS I at a Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. I was impressed by the idea of simulating terrain in that way, but depressed about how slowly the battles would progress. In fact, it seems like I have a photo that we used in High Score that has CGW founder Russell Sipe, Ezra, Sid Meier and myself actually talking about wargames.

Seriously, I thought Ezra was doing a nice job of trying to break out of our, then, predominantly hexagonal view of the hobby and, simultaneously, to use the limited power of the 8-bit PC. I loved the innovation; I loved the effort. I very much respect the effort. Yet, somehow it was obvious from the beginning that Ezra's assumptions about command control and friction were going to frustrate most wargamers.

As for War College, I never really figured out how to really use it. I think my PC was under-powered for it and I didn't really enjoy it. Now, I'm thinking of digging back through the archive and seeing what it'll do on my current machine. Sometimes, the results are very interesting.
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Brad Miller
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eddy_sterckx wrote:
pelni wrote:
but I do not approve of the FUD he spreads about Dijkstra's. It is a great algorithm for finding the shortest paths from one node to many/all others. And only the most naive implementation no one would use in practice has the (expected) bad square complexity mentioned in the article.


Wildly off-topic here but I'm a fan of the A* algorithm for shortest path - got full code for an implementation of it I wrote in Delphi (object oriented Pascal) - if anybody is interested just gm me.


Delphi...

Spent about 15 years devolving in Delphi. It was the best!
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Chris Carnes
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drjohnny wrote:


Universal Military Simulator I, huh? What's the matter? Don't you like battlefields without water? I remember Ezra showing us the beta of UMS I at a Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. I was impressed by the idea of simulating terrain in that way, but depressed about how slowly the battles would progress. In fact, it seems like I have a photo that we used in High Score that has CGW founder Russell Sipe, Ezra, Sid Meier and myself actually talking about wargames.

Seriously, I thought Ezra was doing a nice job of trying to break out of our, then, predominantly hexagonal view of the hobby and, simultaneously, to use the limited power of the 8-bit PC. I loved the innovation; I loved the effort. I very much respect the effort. Yet, somehow it was obvious from the beginning that Ezra's assumptions about command control and friction were going to frustrate most wargamers.

As for War College, I never really figured out how to really use it. I think my PC was under-powered for it and I didn't really enjoy it. Now, I'm thinking of digging back through the archive and seeing what it'll do on my current machine. Sometimes, the results are very interesting.


First of all, Let me just say that Computer Gaming World is still my favorite all time magazine...ever. Brilliant work there Johnny, and work for which I will be forever grateful and appreciative.

As for UMS, I thought the hype exceeded the product. Yes, I definitely thought Ezra was great with his innovative approach. It's just that in the execution it came up short, and ultimately wasn't satisfying. I believe your magazine did a most appropriate review on it.

As for War College, it was a shambles. The moment I had two enemy columns move through each other without firing a single shot, I was done.
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Sean Chatterton
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I dont think i have ever been as excited to buy a game as I was UMS2.

I hated it from the first second of using it, but persisted for weeks before giving up. Fortunately I discovered Harpoon somewhere around that time.

Reading those articles the gap between self-aggrandisement and reality is so large I could practically guarantee the next game will be as much of an unplayable mess as the last 2
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Bill Gates
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drjohnny wrote:
Blackhorse wrote:
I was never so pissed off at computer games as I was at his UMS I&II and War College games. Let's hope this effort is better.


Universal Military Simulator I, huh? What's the matter? Don't you like battlefields without water? I remember Ezra showing us the beta of UMS I at a Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. I was impressed by the idea of simulating terrain in that way, but depressed about how slowly the battles would progress. In fact, it seems like I have a photo that we used in High Score that has CGW founder Russell Sipe, Ezra, Sid Meier and myself actually talking about wargames.

Seriously, I thought Ezra was doing a nice job of trying to break out of our, then, predominantly hexagonal view of the hobby and, simultaneously, to use the limited power of the 8-bit PC. I loved the innovation; I loved the effort. I very much respect the effort. Yet, somehow it was obvious from the beginning that Ezra's assumptions about command control and friction were going to frustrate most wargamers.

As for War College, I never really figured out how to really use it. I think my PC was under-powered for it and I didn't really enjoy it. Now, I'm thinking of digging back through the archive and seeing what it'll do on my current machine. Sometimes, the results are very interesting.


I wish you guys (CGW) had never been sold to Ziff-Davis ... still my favorite magazine of all time. I have every issue up to the end, and still pull them out and read them.

And, yeah, I remember the months of anticipation waiting for UMS II to be released ... and then never being able to actually play it ...

I liked the idea of Universal Military Simulator, but SSI's Wargame Construction Set did it better.
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