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Guam: Return to Glory» Forums » General

Subject: Just got my copy...wow! rss

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Eleazar Lawson
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It was only after a lot of soul searching that I finally broke down (just a few weeks ago actually)and put in my order for Guam: Return to Glory. I am an absolute Pacific War fanatic and always have been. I enjoy strategic games on the Pacific(although my playing them has been cut down a lot since I got a job and kids etc.), but my experience with tactical level games in this theatre has largely been disappointing, because frankly there's not a lot for the Japanese to do usually. I passed on volume 1 in this series, Saipan, for just that reason. I believe I have played just about every Saipan game there is (except the one that was printed in S&T along with Clontarf, and the version by Grognard games), including the Saipan game by Fresno Gaming Association, where uncommon production errors were a common virtue, and I regret every minute I spent on all of them.

Guam, however, is a little bit of a different story. The situation is still pretty much cut and dried overall, like most of the island battles after Guadalcanal, but there's a lot more terrain to fight over, and more room for maneuver. Sadly, I think the battle for Guam is under-represented in our hobby.

So I broke down.

I have not had the benefit of playing yet, so I can't post a review. But I would like to say...wow. The Maps are spectacular, the counters are beautiful. As usual for compass games, the physical quality of the components is top notch. Skimming the rule books, it seems that the basic system is pretty straight forward. Complexity, such as it is, comes from the chrome. War dogs, snipers, ambushes, drunken banzai charges. The list goes on and on. I suppose this may cause nervous breakdowns for some, but I think it lends a lot of texture over simple "it's a three to one attack, add one to the die roll for the rough terrain."

Add in the smaller one map scenarios and there is a lot of game here. Although I admit, the idea of fighting over the whole island at company level is absurdly attractive (although it will have to wait until my children graduate).

I know that gameplay is the thing, and I can't comment on that yet, but I am really looking forward to this one. Worth the wait, worth the price.
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Adam Starkweather
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Hey Eleazar! Thanks for the early kudos. It was fun to make too! Let us know how it goes for you.
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Eleazar Lawson
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I guess the real question now is: do I have to go back and buy Saipan?
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Rosecrans man
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Eleazar,

Actually I've found that there's stuff the Japanese can do, not the least of which is counterattack at propitious moments and Banzai attack when and where the Americans look weak. Remember that on Saipan, the Japanese almost destroyed the 105th Regiment of the 27th ID near the end of the battle. On Tinian, Saipan and on Peleliu, the Japanese counterattacked on the first evening hoping to drive the Americans back into the ocean.

Another good wargame that features Saipan and Tinian is Michael Taylor's game from Legion.
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Adam Starkweather
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Saipan plays very differently from Guam (even though they are both Marine invasions)...and Saipan is tougher on the Marines while Guam is tougher on the Japanese. I will say that both games offer plenty of play for the Japanese (despite the common refrain that the Japanese aren't fun to play in these games).
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Rosecrans man
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adamant wrote:
Saipan plays very differently from Guam (even though they are both Marine invasions)...and Saipan is tougher on the Marines while Guam is tougher on the Japanese. I will say that both games offer plenty of play for the Japanese (despite the common refrain that the Japanese aren't fun to play in these games).


In his notes in Saipan, Ross makes a good general point about that when you drill down to company level, that there's more than enough options for the Japanese. I found that to be true in Michael Taylor's Saipan and Tinian, too. It has battalions that could be broken down.
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Eleazar Lawson
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For the record, it's my call...expend all remaining in my perimeter.
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Thanks everyone. I appreciate these comments, and I can certainly appreciate that it's a different fight at, say company level. Who am I kidding...I'm going to break down and get it.
 
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Eleazar Lawson
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For the record, it's my call...expend all remaining in my perimeter.
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Update: I am now the proud owner of Saipan as well. No regrets; it’s every bit as compelling as Return to Glory. Looking forward to enjoying them both!
 
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