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Subject: need a new wargame; would appreciate some advice rss

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robert wood
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my boys (12 and 10) and i have played memoir '44 100+ times. we love it. it's the first "modern" (i.e., made within the past 15 years) wargame that any of us have played.

i'm ready to buy a new one.

i want it to be (a) a "great" game (don't want to waste my time on mediocre games), (b) a two-player (or two-team) game, (c) slightly more complicated than memoir '44, (d) not too similar to memoir '44, and (e) a game that lasts 60-75 minutes long (as opposed to the 20-35 minute memoir '44).

thanks very much.
 
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J.L. Robert
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I'll be first to sing the chorus:

Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42

It hits each and every point you're looking for.
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Dan Poole
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Agree with above
 
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Kent Reuber
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Are you interested in any other periods, or do you want another World War II game? Here's a game I'll recommend for the American Civil War: Yankees & Rebels. It has a Euro/Wargame hybrid feel, has only 2 pages of rules, and the mechanics are different enough from Memoir to be different but enjoyable.

 
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Joe Hill
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How about Bonaparte at Marengo?

And Napoleon's Triumph can be played with teams.
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Jan van der Laan
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Apart from Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42 another option would be Tide of Iron. ToI takes considerable more time to set up (and play) than CoH but the physical appearance of ToI is more like M'44 (if you like playing with minis). Both CoH and ToI are a step up from M'44 but stay close enough to M'44 to make the learning curve not too steep.
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Caleb
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If they like history I recommend Columbia Games' War of 1812 or Quebec 1759. It's a step toward more "serious" fare from the heaps-o-plastic of Memoir 44. These are very accessible (and fun) Columbia games. In my opinion two of the absolute best "intro" wargames.

War of 1812 was just reprinted too.
 
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Ralph Ferrari
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Lock n Load World at War series is pretty simple and straight forward. The other thought is Rage against the Marines in MMPs Special Operation #1.
 
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Bill
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Conflict of Heroes is a particularly good choice if you're looking to move them towards hexes and chits without inundating them with rules complexity. Combat Commander is another excellent option in the same vein.

If you're looking for a block game, War of 1812 is a pretty good choice (I've never played Quebec 1759). It plays very quickly but (like Memoir itself) feels a little too abstract for me. Hammer of the Scots plays longer but leaves me feeling more satisfied (and is not terribly much more complex).

Worthington's Wars for America series has much of the same feel as Memoir with an action point rather than a card activation system. I'm not sure that this is much of a step forward in complexity -- perhaps a lateral step.

If they really like the Memoir system itself, Command and Colors Ancients introduces a bit more complexity and manages to feel quite different from Memoir despite using the same core mechanics.
 
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Bartow Riggs
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Meeting 4 of your 5 criteria and maybe all 5 (depending on what "too similar" means):



edit: to jinx latindog
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Kurt Weihs
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Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.

Have you considered Axis and Allies? There is the flagship game but some of the theater specific games are pretty good too.

Battlelore is slightly more complicated than Memoir but, like Commands and Colors, might suffer from the 'too similar' issue. The cool factor is higher on this one if you enjoy medieval/fantasy.

While we are talking about block games I highly recommend Hammer of the Scots and Napoleon but would recommend Hammer if you are moving from Memoir up.

Tide of Iron is commonly listed as a "same period/focus as but more complicated than..." for Memoir but I agree with the others here that the Lock 'N Load series is better (I prever it over Combat Commander but that is more of a taste issue).
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Philip Manoff
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Conflict of Heroes is a great choice. As a long-time ASL player, I have been looking at a game for my 7 year old. I have played twice solitaire and plan to teach him the game next. It looks like they are going to continue with a series of games using the same design.
 
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Brad Miller
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For a block game, and your given number of players, I'd recommend Napoleon: The Waterloo Campaign, 1815, as it is playable by three, isn't particularly difficult, and plays fairly quickly. It's not modern, but it's a very solid "step up".
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Jack Stalica
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Storm over Stalingrad will fit your bill. Under 4 pages of rules; only 6 turns long (plays in under 3 hours); quick set-up time; non-stop tense interaction due to impulses swapping and interruptable cardplay. It also depicts the battle surprisingly accurately for such a simple game. A wee bit longer than you want but trust me: you will NOT be bored. Nice.
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Bill the Pill
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jstalica wrote:
Storm over Stalingrad will fit your bill. Under 4 pages of rules; only 6 turns long (plays in under 3 hours); quick set-up time; non-stop tense interaction due to impulses swapping and interruptable cardplay. It also depicts the battle surprisingly accurately for such a simple game. A wee bit longer than you want but trust me: you will NOT be bored. Nice.

I'm a big fan of Conflict of Heroes, but for a change of pace and a playable game for 12 and 10 year-olds, I'd also recommend Storm over Stalingrad by MMP--although hard to find in many gamestores even though new.
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William Collins
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Do you like Memoir '44 because of the wide range of scenarios? That might really help you dial in on something in particular out of this *AWESOME* list of recommendations.
 
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Joe Hill
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Sturmkraehe wrote:
Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.


Yea and it has a huge rule book. Can't you just buy Triumph and then download the map for Morengo here on BGG and then use the same blocks? I thought that was a major reason why Simmons Games decided not to reprint Morengo. Conversely making the prices in the BGG market place outrageously high....
 
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Mark Christopher
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Joseph Hill wrote:
Sturmkraehe wrote:
Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.


Yea and it has a huge rule book.


Huge rule book? It's 12 pages, 8 of which are rules. By wargame standards, that's a mighty small rulebook.
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Robert Washington

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Eevryone seems to be sticking with games set in WWII and/or history so far, but Nexus Ops fits all of your prerequisites - just a little more complexity than MEMOIR, very different in terms of gameplay, a little bit longer (usually running right around an hour), and can be played 2-player, in 2 teams paired off, or 3 to 4-way free-for-all style. While out of print, it was overprinted to the sky and is still fairly available for cheap.

I'd also at least look over BattleLore and Commands & Colors: Ancients - while very similar to MEMOIR, each has several elements that make it play somewhat differently; whether it's different enough to suit you is the question.
 
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Joe Hill
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markus_kt wrote:
Joseph Hill wrote:
Sturmkraehe wrote:
Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.


Yea and it has a huge rule book.


Huge rule book? It's 12 pages, 8 of which are rules. By wargame standards, that's a mighty small rulebook.


Oh really? I guess I haven't looked at it in a while. My memory isn't what it used to be...
 
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Steve Russell
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Joseph Hill wrote:
markus_kt wrote:
Joseph Hill wrote:
Sturmkraehe wrote:
Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.


Yea and it has a huge rule book.


Huge rule book? It's 12 pages, 8 of which are rules. By wargame standards, that's a mighty small rulebook.


Oh really? I guess I haven't looked at it in a while. My memory isn't what it used to be...


Number of pages may be misleading. How big is the font and how many illustrations of play examples are in those 8 pages? If not many example illustrations are in there and it's a small font, 8 pages can be pretty heavy.
 
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Curtis Bensmiller
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Even thought I love Conflict of Heroes; based on your boys ages and some of the new things you can do with the game, I would suggest Tide of Iron. It's a bit larger in scope and some interesting mechanics make it a fun game to play.

Eventually you may want to try Axis and Allies Miniatures, or eventually move up to Flames of War if you don't mind the painting aspect.
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Mark Christopher
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theatre steve wrote:
Joseph Hill wrote:
markus_kt wrote:
Joseph Hill wrote:
Sturmkraehe wrote:
Bonaparte' at Marengo might be tough to find and while Napoleon's Triumph is a great game and looks fairly easy to play it is by no means a simple game.


Yea and it has a huge rule book.


Huge rule book? It's 12 pages, 8 of which are rules. By wargame standards, that's a mighty small rulebook.


Oh really? I guess I haven't looked at it in a while. My memory isn't what it used to be...


Number of pages may be misleading. How big is the font and how many illustrations of play examples are in those 8 pages? If not many example illustrations are in there and it's a small font, 8 pages can be pretty heavy.


Fair enough. As a general rule, I love to skim through online rules (when available) before buying a wargame. That's the best way to judge the rules vs. one's comfort level.
 
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Mark Christopher
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Joseph Hill wrote:
My memory isn't what it used to be...

You and me both.
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Mark Christopher
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captainmike wrote:
i want it to be (a) a "great" game (don't want to waste my time on mediocre games), (b) a two-player (or two-team) game, (c) slightly more complicated than memoir '44, (d) not too similar to memoir '44, and (e) a game that lasts 60-75 minutes long (as opposed to the 20-35 minute memoir '44).

thanks very much.

I'd agree with the recommendation for Napoleon's Triumph, though it may be a bit long for you (figure ~3.5 hours for your first game, and around 2 - 2.5 once you're comfortable with the rules. It's a nominal two-player game with very cool team-play rules if you want more than one person per side.

Tide of Iron is fun but many of the scenarios also go longer than your range. I'm looking forward to trying Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42.

I'll also second the recommendation for Napoleon: The Waterloo Campaign, 1815. That's a fun 3-player block game that lasts ~2 hours and has a very slim rulebook.

If strictly 2-player is good (not more than 1 person on a side), then I'd also suggest Combat Commander: Europe. Very fun WWII tactical game. Almost cinematic, in that the random events can really cause some chaos.

Have you looked at any of the recent Axis & Allies titles? The theater- and operational-level ones are generally a lot of fun. I'm speaking of Axis & Allies: Europe, Axis & Allies: Pacific, Axis & Allies: Battle of the Bulge, and Axis & Allies: Guadalcanal. The latter two can fit into your time range if played relatively quickly.
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