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Subject: Thinking about trying my first WW2 Strategy Game rss

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Christopher Senn
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Fort Lauderdale
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Hello everyone.

I've been looking to get into a solo WW2 strategy themed game. I have no problem with complex gaming rules. But I don't want a game where I am constantly referring to the rule book (i.e fields of fire). Plus I don't want to be over burdened with 100s of chits and thick fragile stacks. I'll be playing solo, so a soloable game is a must. Also pet peeve, the USA needs to be playable (A western front game. Not Eastern Front).

So far I have checked out Unconditional Surrender, Holland 44, and D-Day: At Omaha Beach.

All seem interesting. Was wondering if you guys can help me decide or offer any more suggestions.
 
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Big Sixer
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Eagan
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D-Day is a good choice. Maybe look at Sherman Leader too. Also WW2 Warfighter.
 
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John Bruns
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This is a great game but is almost totally tactical as opposed to strategic in scope. For a great strategic soloable game, I might suggest Enemy Action Ardennes.
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Barry Miller
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Saint Charles
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Grove123 wrote:
So far I have checked out Unconditional Surrender, Holland 44, and D-Day: At Omaha Beach.

Well just about any wargame can be played solo... I.e., play against yourself (or "left arm vs right arm"). Unconditional Surrender is a very good candidate for this sort of play. There are of course, many, many other titles to look at... even card driven wargames (CDG) thanks to Stuka Joe's CDG system for solo play. (Such as Empire of the Sun).

Also, any of the COIN series of games are great options as they include "'bot" flowcharts which dictate the play of any of the game's factions as if it was controlled by a human. I'm in the middle of a solo session of Liberty or Death: The American Insurrection and am loving it! (Whoops...Except that none of the current COIN titles are focused on WWII... but still, something to keep in mind. Wait! except:... a game that just came to mind which uses the same 'bot flowchart system that IS focused on WWII, is Churchill. Though it's not really a wargame. It's more of a political game that uses WWII has its setting).


Anyway and HOWEVER, if you're looking for a solitaire wargame experience, then why not play wargames which are designed specifically for solitaire play? The wargame market has been leading the way in "Strictly solitaire" gaming for decades. The rest of the boardgaming genres are just now beginning to catch on.

Of the three titles you listed, only D-Day at Omaha Beach is designed specifically for solitaire play (though it has a variant to allow for co-op play). So of the three, I'd start with that, especially considering that you have no problems with complex rules.

There are of course many other superb solitaire wargame titles that focus on WWII...
Among my favorites is just about any game designed by JOHN BUTTERFIELD, such as:
RAF: The Battle of Britain 1940
Conflict of Heroes: Eastern Front – Solo Expansion
Enemy Action: Ardennes
and,
D-Day at Omaha Beach (sound familiar?)

There's also the "Leader Series" by DVG. Some of my favorites are:
B-17 Flying Fortress Leader (I'm working on a play-through video now)
Gato Leader
Thunderbolt Apache Leader (though not WWII of course, but as it's a wonderful solitaire expereince I thought I'd throw it in)

Another of my favorite "Strictly solitaire" WWII wargames is:
Silent War

So there you go... just a few wargames that are designed specifically for solitaire play.
You can browse many more at this Geeklist: Strictly Solitaire - A List of Games Designed (Only) for One Player

Have fun!
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Kirk Shelley
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New Haven
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A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in. - Unknown
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This game really shines when you use the flip book (found in the Files Section). Between that and reviewing the material on BGG (reviews, AARs and videos) you should be good to go. The game does tell a tight narrative which has changed my understanding of WWII.
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Menin Gate at Midnight, Will Longstaff, 1927.
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"At the landing, and here ever since" - Anzac Book, p. 35.
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kshelley wrote:
This game really shines when you use the flip book (found in the Files Section). Between that and reviewing the material on BGG (reviews, AARs and videos) you should be good to go. The game does tell a tight narrative which has changed my understanding of WWII.


While D-Day at Omaha Beach is more 'tactical', it's a great introduction to solitaire WW2 gaming. As Kirk said above, download the flipbook, and you probably won't have to refer back to the rulebook. If you watch my instructional video, you'll have a decent grasp of the basic gameplay:



If you would rather go with something strategic, consider The Barbarossa Campaign. It's a dedicated solitaire game where you take on the entire Eastern Front against the AI-Russians - but be warned, they are tough to beat! It's pretty cheap, and has a small map [doesn't take up much space]



But as others have said, many wargamers play any game solo by playing both sides. Something like Red Star Rising: The War in Russia, 1941-1944 is a great strategic-level 2-player game where you can play both sides. But, it is a much bigger game.



I'd avoid Enemy Action Ardennes for your first foray [as some have suggested], as it's very heavy on the rules.
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Stuart
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I'd recommend RAF: the Battle of Britain 1940 to start, as mentioned above; it was my first strategy game and it's what got me hooked on this hobby.

Whilst RAF is quite simple to grasp it isn't a simplistic game, if you see what I mean. The trick to winning is in shepherding your very limited resources and choosing your fights especially carefully. In this sense it portrays the reality of those dark days in the summer of 1940 very well. As Churchill said at the time "never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few". You can almost imagine yourself sporting a handlebar moustache stood over Fighter Command's huge map table of southern England and scrambling squadrons of Spitfires and Hurricanes...

My second game was D-Day at Omaha Beach, which is more complex but fantastic fun, and I would recommend it too. Being a hex-and-counter game it feels more like a traditional strategy wargame (although technically would probably be best described as tactical or operational)

However, the game that I'd aim to be playing eventually if I were you is Enemy Action: Ardennes. This was my third Butterfield game and in many ways feels the culmination of the skills I developed in playing the above two games. EAA is a truly great game and when I've completed my current game of Fields of Fire I'll be starting another game of it.

Happy choosing!
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