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Harpoon 4» Forums » Rules

Subject: Differences? rss

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Anthony L.
United States
San Antonio
Texas
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I'm a big time fan of the PC versions of Harpoon and have been playing them since I was a little kid. I've been looking around for the tabletop version, but the only place I found it had High Tide for something like $80 and I didn't feel like paying quite that much. While wandering my local game store the other day, I happened across the original 1987 version (The updated GDW one, not the original original one) along with Battles of WWIII and the new version of the South Atlantic War for quite a bit cheaper, so I bought it. I've been reading over the rules and starting to play, but my question is, other than the ship annex which is 22 years out of date, is there anything really particularly updated in 4th edition? Could I buy the new annexes and still be able to play? Is it worth dropping the $50 or so on eBay for the 4th Edition Rule book?
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Seth Owen
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Norwich
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It depends what you want the game for.

If you're looking at it as a game, the older version is perfectly serviceable.

If, on the other hand, you're looking at it as a realistic naval simulation there's no substitute for the newest version. There have been many many significant changes based on 20 more years of playtesting and new information becoming available. Older data annexes are basically obsolete as some things such as the damage point formula have been changed.

The PC versions of the game have always been less technically accurate than the latest print version, although they have obvious advantages because of the use of the computer as far as ease of play and the ability to use hidden information.

I really think Harpoon is one of those game systems you're either committed to or you are not. It's not well suited to simple casual play as it's not really a game but a simulation and the entire point of the game is to be as realistic as possible given the limits of human ability and the paper game format. If you buy High Tide you will, however, have a complete game. It has all the rules and counters you ned to play all the scenarios included in the game, so it's probably a more economical way to get into the game than trying to buy it in pieces.
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