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Subject: PBEM newbee - any tips? rss

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Gotthard Heinrici (prev. Graf Strachwitz)
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Hi,
I am a PBEM virgin but want to change that. Not sure however how PBEM exactly works (e.g. dice rolling?) or where to find more on this. Can you recommend as suitable PBEM wargames?
Many thanks,
HB
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Michael Cox
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If you use CyberBoard it takes care of rolling dice. Games are played using gameboxes which someone creates for CyberBoard. No rules handling provided as that is up to the players.

If you do it for a game that does not have a gamebox for CyberBoard, there are online die rollers such as http://pbegames.com/roller/ .

As for what game to play, that would depend on your preference. Try searching the forum and the files section of a game here on BGG to see if there is a gamebox for it.

Michael
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Wolfgang Kunz
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Hi Harro.

My 5 cent to this:

1) I would recommend Vassal - simply because of multi - platform compatible. I have a Mac, you might use Windows - so no problems playing against one - another.

2) For CDGs you might use ACTS too (http://acts.warhorsesim.com). It makes sure that there is no cheating in CDGs while playing. For me it is a lesser problem because I find it rather stupid to look for someone PbeM and then cheat with dice-rolls and cards. Vassal can do the card - mechanism and dice - rolling too.

For explanation about cheating: You can cheat when you load a saved game, then roll the dice - if the result is bad you abort the game without saving, load the saved game again - you get the picture.

3) Start small. Best is if you use a game you pretty well know. Even if Case Blue might be very tempting - again: start small. It is easier to learn the interface (which IMHO is rather intuitive) then having to take care of 3500 counters too.

4) Have fun.

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Bill Lawson
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Vassal has a die roller also. I would suggest A Victory Lost on vassal. Vassal is far superior to Cyberboard! Heres a link to an AVL vassal tutorial http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/154388
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Keith Mageau
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Another possible option is vassal which is located at www.vassalengine.org I personally like vassal over CyberBoard, but that is personal preference thing. The game boxes or modules for each are pretty extensive. Although, I think there are more modules created for vassal than CyberBoard. Additionally, vassal handles real-time play quite nicely and even facilitates going from real-time to PBeM when that need arises.

Both almost always faciliate die rolling. If you are into CDGs vassal modules tend to handle card management quite well. Both formats may offer quick references charts within the modules or game boxes.

What are your interests? Shad has created a vassal directory to help pair people togther to play either real-time or PBem games. It is located here: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/23350

Hope this helps.
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Michael Lucey
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Vassal is very good, and just about all use actual map graphics where CB can have some ugly re-creations. My favorite item is the ability to log within a log, esential for any interactive game like ASL. Also the hidden and concealed unit ability (again ASL) is perfect for games with hidden unit setup.

One thing I caught on some 1st time installs (this completely saved a vassal hater btw) is the game window is tiered with the map in the lower half, a chat box bar in the middle and the upper half is the history scroll. The scroll window is where dialog from the chat bar is seen as well as movement of the pieces. They are expandable to fit your likes but that chat window makes the PBEM interaction possible.

Vassal can be a memory hog though, some maps (OCS games for instance) can scroll very slowly.

The dice bot (mine hates me) is good as are the cards so you don't really need any outside program. Last word of advice... always start a log file before moving pieces. There is nothing like a killer attack only to find you are not saving your actions.
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James Lowry
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Scoobysnacks wrote:
Last word of advice... always start a log file before moving pieces. There is nothing like a killer attack only to find you are not saving your actions.

Been there, done that over. soblue
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B. Marsh
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VASSAL works, and I would suggest Squad Leader
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Gotthard Heinrici (prev. Graf Strachwitz)
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Thanks guys, will have to rethink PBEM and go for VASSAL I guess.
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Skip Franklin
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I'm a CyberBoard man myself but when I get a Mac next year that may change.
 
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Michael Von Ahnen
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Scoobysnacks wrote:
Vassal is very good, and just about all use actual map graphics where CB can have some ugly re-creations.


Isn't this called copyright infringement? Many of the CB games have "ugly er-creations" for just this reason.
 
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Skip Franklin
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A lot of game companies support the use of VASSAL.
 
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Runs with scissors
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I use Vassal, and doing all the dice rolls in ACTS seems pretty common with the folks that I play with.

Vassal doesn't enforce game rules, but most game company's support Vassal, and as a result the maps/graphics are the same that the board game uses.
 
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Joel Uckelman
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mvonahnen wrote:
Scoobysnacks wrote:
Vassal is very good, and just about all use actual map graphics where CB can have some ugly re-creations.


Isn't this called copyright infringement? Many of the CB games have "ugly er-creations" for just this reason.


Many VASSAL module designers have permission to use the original game art.
 
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Michael Lucey
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mvonahnen wrote:
Scoobysnacks wrote:
Vassal is very good, and just about all use actual map graphics where CB can have some ugly re-creations.


Isn't this called copyright infringement? Many of the CB games have "ugly er-creations" for just this reason.


Just about every official module as posted on the vassal webpage at least I would assume is official which means approved by the company. I know GMT and MMP provide the data for official modules. I've seen a couple game companies remove the modules because they did not approve the usage of actual artwork. The MMP flamewar earlier this year was based on that very issue, they were going to pull the plug on allowing the creation of official modules but had to back off due to the backlash.
 
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Michael Lucey
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Why do people need ACTS in addition to the vassal module? Every module I've played provide dice bots and are good at keeping track of the card play. It sounds to me like an extra step that is just redundant and tedious.

edit reason: No need to quote because I was asking a general question and not directing it at any one user. I see many PBEM requests requiring ACTS in addition to vassal.
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