John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
A while back I posted a journal entry in which I asked why people don’t play war games. Since then I’ve been vaguely inspired to write some more on the subject. Given that this site is populated by a very large number of folks who have become gamers relatively recently due to the appeal of elegant euro-style games, the answers aren’t too surprising.

In no particular order and in no good writing style…

1) Player elimination in multi-player games is bad. It destroys the social value. I usually don’t like m-p war themed games because they are the wrong scale.

2) “Fiddliness” of the rules.
Described as exceptions to the rules or even exceptions to the exceptions. Of course, the more detailed the attempt to simulate war the more fiddly the game gets. Lately I’ve come to the conclusion it’s counter productive in terms of actually playing the darn games and presents players in tactical games with opportunities to make optimal decisions based on some petty detail that a company commander under fire wouldn’t take time to consider.

3) Too many types of units. Pretty close to #2 in some ways. Historical games are easier for me since I have a pretty good knowledge of how the different types interact through out history anyway. I like different types of units and discovering and exploiting their strengths and weaknesses.

4) Direct conflict is a bummer. But it’s a legal way to take out one’s aggressions on another human being. I suspect that those who complain about direct conflict are the ones who have been on the receiving end one too many times.

5) Morale Grounds: I think only one person objected to war themed games on the grounds that simulating human death and suffering is offensive and he explained his reasons respectfully and very well.

6) Playing time: I was always amazed when comparing the journals of others.

Euro-Geek A: Last night 8 of us played six different games in four hours.

BIG War Game Geek B:
Last weekend 4 (or 3 of us or even 2 of us) played one game of (fill in the blank). Wish we could have finished it.

BUT I like war themed games (especially historically based two player ones).

The rest of my journal today is going to be about, as best as I can stay on topic today , a couple of different types of direct conflict war themed games.

Within the direct conflict war game category there are “empire building” games which have a limited appeal to me. Usually I have no desire to play emperor and explore, expand, exploit, build and negotiate nothing with no one no how.

Nope, call me when the shooting starts, my number is 362-4360.

Wallenstein is somewhat of an exception but not really. In the Big W you don’t have time to really build an empire, just improve on the status quo as best you can. Sometimes direct conflict is required but again there isn’t enough time to totally eliminate another player.

Skirmish Games don’t appeal for long either: Somebody posted a geeklist about how some games can be improved by a good scenario. I agree. The problem that afflicts many non-historical war themed games is the “kill them all” to win victory conditions. It’s one of the things that keeps HeroScape at arms length. Battle Cry falls into the skirmish category since every scenario, regardless of the overall tactical force ratio or larger operational or strategic context ends when six flags on one side are eliminated. No time limits. Just kill. Ideally as quickly as possible.

Battle games, tactical or operational, usually depict a historical engagement/campaign in which there are conditions for victory based on the larger context. For example, capture this spot on the map without losing X number of units, hold these places on the map for X number of turns, exit X number of units off the opposite side of the map by the game end.

I like those kinds of victory conditions. Give me a force, a clear objective and some flexibility on how to achieve the victory and I’m a happy war gamer.

A couple of psychological insights…

I work in an exceptionally competitive field. It used to be less so. Sometimes I need to take that competitiveness to the gaming table.

In multi-player games I’m sometimes less aggressive versus other players and measure my performance against the pack. It depends on how the rest of life is going…maybe.

My other main hobby activity now, is playing guitar with 3 other guys at a weekly event we call Rock School. Performing with other people is totally about team and playing ones role to the best of ones ability. A cooperative effort to put forth good music or bad music for that matter but played well.

The third hobby, which is currently and totally in moth balls for now is photography. It’s a solitaire hobby that I picked up when I quit playing in bands after I married.

It seems I’m not doing a very good job of staying on topic. Maybe I should come back to this later or perhaps I’ve said all I need to say.

Really OT stuff and the 1 GG contest.

Last night I dreamt I lost all the hair on the top of my head and resorted to a comb over. I also dreamt I was back with my ex-wife. Genetically and emotionally neither of those things are very likely.

The older I get the more I look like my maternal grandfather who had a full head of hair to the end. His nickname was “The Perfessor.” There was a panhandler in downtown Louisville who decided on his own that I was Perfessor Ed. I should have taken that as a user name.

My boss has a $1000 food credit at the casino boat. He just called and asked me if I wanted go help him use some of it up. Let’s see cold cuts at home versus a pretty good buffet. The downside is it’ll be a long night.


I have 1 spare GG which I will award to the first person who responds to this journal with the answer to the following.
In the body of this entry I posted a phone number as my own. It is not my number but one referenced in a bit of pop culture. For 1 GG: Where did I come up with that phone number?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Catherine von Xlorp
United States
San Jose
California
flag msg tools
Sly like a duck
badge
Try the biscuits
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
362-4360
I lead a life of crime....

Dirty Deeds Done Cheap
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jake Di Toro
United States
Virginia Beach
Virginia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just ring three sixty two four three six o
I lead a life of crime

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Jsut to be an SOB...
Artist?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tim Deagan
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmb
Pick up the phone, I'm always home
Call me any time
Just ring 36 24 36 hey
I lead a life of crime

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Catherine von Xlorp
United States
San Jose
California
flag msg tools
Sly like a duck
badge
Try the biscuits
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Artist
Like, ACDC?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tom Chappelear
United States
Kensington
California
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
Artist
AC/DC, of course, but I'm not sure they'd like being called "artists."
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Like, are you guessing
AC/DC?

Yeah, ok. You win. On the live album, it's kind of slurred and I had to print out the lyrics. (Like I was really gonna sing it). My transcription had it as "36-24-36 OH!"

Next time a much harder contest. How much do you guys know about anti-tank weapons?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Catherine von Xlorp
United States
San Jose
California
flag msg tools
Sly like a duck
badge
Try the biscuits
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Anti tank knowledge?
More than these guys I hope

(22 March 1999, Phnom Penh) Decades of armed strife has littered Cambodia with unexploded munitions and ordnance. Authorities warn citizens not to tamper with the devices. Three friends recently spent an evening sharing drinks and exchanging insults at a local cafe in the southeastern province of Svay Rieng. Their companionable arguing continued for hours, until one man pulled out a 25-year-old unexploded anti-tank mine found in his backyard. He tossed it under the table, and the three men began playing Russian roulette, each tossing down a drink and then stomping on the mine. The other villagers fled in terror. Minutes later, the explosive detonated with a tremendous boom, killing the three men in the bar. "Their wives could not even find their flesh because the blast destroyed everything," the Rasmei Kampuchea newspaper reported.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Li'l Ronnie Post
United States
Seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
Avatar
Steve...
Uh, wow.. Do you ever get invited to parties more than once?
''
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ron Smith
United States
Santa Ana
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
AT weapons
xlorp:
I though scribidinus meant AT guns, not AT mines, though I supose he might have meant both.
I wonder if anyone ever played russian roulette with a 21mm russian AT rifle? There were a huge number of these left lying about as a result of Barbarossa. They were useless against German tanks, but I bet they could make a big hole in a skull. Where would you get the ammo though?
This is getting too gross.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gil Hova
United States
Jersey City
New Jersey
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
My favorite AC/DC quote
"I'm sick to death of people saying we've made 11 albums that sound exactly the same, when in fact, we've made 12 albums that sound exactly the same."

-Angus Young
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gil Hova
United States
Jersey City
New Jersey
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Oh, and Scrib, another great write-up on the difference between the Consim and Eurogame aesthetics. I'm firmly on the Eurogame side, but I don't like the idea that one is objectively "better" than the other. That's like saying that dramas are objectively better than comedies, or that blues is objectively better than jazz, or... you get the idea.

Interestingly enough, I played Ogre the other day. That's as close as I get to wargames. I like the extremely asymmetric setup, and it's a quick, fun game.

As far as hobbies, bravo to you for keeping your musical talents fresh. For want of time and money, my musical aspirations have been shelved indefinitely. Perhaps this was not a bad thing...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jerry McVicker
United States
Morgantown
West Virginia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
AT weapons?
I like em lots when there are enemy tanks roaming around my yard. Damn things breed like flies.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Big Lebowski
Germany
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
The Dude abides!
badge
yeah? well… y’know, that’s just like, uh… your opinion, man…
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
morale grounds
my father visited me yesterday - we're gonna celebrate his 80th birthday next weekend.

when he arrived, my best friend & me were just in the middle of Memoir'44 scenario 12 - Montélimar (i should mention that we played with handmade terrain - lots of real little hills & trees). he asked "hey, what are you doing?", so i answered carelessly "the germans just defeat the allies who are advancing to the rhone".

when my father understood what i meant, he fell in shocked silence for a while. later he explained "i just can't (& don't want to) believe that you're PLAYING the horror that i thank god for having survived".

maybe we sometimes just don't care enough.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Duncan Gibson
United States
flag msg tools
Will play any game... especially for wine or espresso.
badge
An Australian in Africa.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Artists!
AC/DC, of course, but I'm not sure they'd like being called "artists."

Unless you consider Angus Young's hobby of landscape painting.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Noel
United States
Unspecified
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Angus Young? Nooooo!
You know, I found myself drawn to the journal topic, decided to read it after I saw the author (I kinda like this guy 'scrib'). But now I'm stuck with an AC/DC song in my brain and the image of a grown man in a schoolboy's outfit kicking his feet while playing the guitar and I wish I had just picked up a book instead of signing in tonight.

cry

I've been... Thunderstruck!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Destiny's got her hand way, way up in their puppets! It's an unpleasant tingling! The deepest of wriggles!
United States
Wichita
Kansas
flag msg tools
But my greatest power is this: When Destiny speaks, she speaks to me. She says hi, by the way.
badge
Oh! And I've been killing the bees!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
A worthy hobby
It would be overstating the case to say that we honor veterans by playing wargames. But it is not an exaggeration to say that we play these games with respect for the sacrifices of the fallen and the courage of the survivors.

Wargamers, at least those I have known, are smart, mature, well-educated and curious. We often are students of history. We often play wargames as both entertainment and instruction. There is of course a "wow" factor (usually in younger gamers) about explosions and artillery barrages. But for the most part we wargamers are looking for an intellectual challenge, a historical case study and a window into the profession of soldiering.

Those who, like me, never served, can only imagine the life of a soldier in combat. And we don't pretend that in playing a game we are "experiencing" war. But when we play, we do so with a keen sense of amazement and gratitude for all that our veterans have done. They fought for our freedoms, in the most momentous battles of history. Their battles, their stories, their lives are worthy of remembrance.

We read their memoirs. We watch their stories at the cinema. We read of their triumphs and defeats in history books. And, yes, we play games about their battles.

I have made some generalizations here, but I believe they are valid for the vast majority of wargamers. Speaking only for myself, I swear that if I thought for one moment that my hobby was disrespectful in any way, I would never look at another one of these games again.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Addendum
Went to the casino boat with Black Bart and Buzz last night. Bart has a $1000.00 food comp on file. He likes to invite me so I can be the DD. Left duh 'Ville at 7:30 and got home 5 hours later. I don't gamble but I walked away with a full belly and up $20.00. Oh, I didn't gamble but when I told Bart I was ready to leave he offered to buy me as many beers as I wanted to stay for another shoe. I reminded him that would defeat the purpose of having me as the desginated driver so he stuck a $20 chip in my shirt pocket, instead. I knew Bart would want to hang out longer so I announced opur departure about an hour before I really wanted to leave anyway. Anyway he walked away up $200 at the table for a change and won $100 side bet on the MNF game. Much better than he did at the track on Friday.

AC/DC and Dirty Deeds. DDDDC is a song that everybody whose ever been in a working band knows. So when starting a bar band from scratch or plugging a substitute player in for a night it's easy to throw on the set list. And sometimes it's fun to play a perfectly horrible little tune like that in front of a room full of drunks. I like the fact that the Young Brothers know exactly who and what they are without the pretentions of being artists.

AT Weapons: I have no contest money at the moment so I'm keeping the questions under wraps until I replenish the account.


Overall I didn't think this entry got where I wanted it to go. The train of thought derailed less than 2/3s into it.

However, I appreciate the participation in the game related portion and was amazed at how quickly xplor shot back a contest reply even though he seemed vague on the artists and his news story was pretty grim.

Starting a few years after I married in 1973, I went over 10 years without touching a guitar. After my divorce in 1988, I decided I was not going to let my marginal skills atrophy further, even though I really started playing to pick up hippy chicks in the late sixties. Some of whom have gone on to be mental health professionals, my current favorite market for romance.

Coming up soon is a follow up to sisterays Games for the Blind. I know some folks who are blind and/or work in organizations which assist them and discovered there are already a few published games out there. I'll post photos.

BTW, it should have been Moral Grounds and not Morale.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Big Lebowski
Germany
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
The Dude abides!
badge
yeah? well… y’know, that’s just like, uh… your opinion, man…
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
i assume my bad english is to blame for a) "morale ground", b) not following the suggested trail of thought, c) not participating in the appreciated portion.

sorry, scribidinus. next time i'll hold off. & i'm missing the hippie chicks.cool
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
(woodoo03),

1) English is my second language, too. Being educated in Indiana and living in Kentucky, I wasn't taught a first.

2) Spell check has it's limitations. I usually create journals in MS Word, wait 24 hours to proof read then copy and paste. I didn't do that this time.

3) I am infinitely distractable here, at work and at home. My journals usually cover a lot of ground. I am OCOT, Obessively and Compulsively Off Topic since I free associate because it's cheap. There are no Off Topic comments in response to any of my postings.

4) I do use the journal as a personal journal much of the time for the other life threads that are interwoven with gaming. But I make an effort to keep a portion of these things about games. Sometimes it's more sometimes it's less.

5)Although anyone may use one of my journal entries as a dumping ground for almost any OT subject (no politics or religion please), it is usually pleasing to see someone has read something in the game related portion that strikes a chord with them. "Strikes a chord?" Damn, I'm off topic and back onto to guitar playing again. See...I cannot stay focused on one thing for very long.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Corey Butler
United States
Marshall
Minnesota
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm jumping in kinda late but...
... I have to say that this is an eclectic bunch of journal topics. Anyhow, wasn't the designer's goal in Memoir '44 about teaching young people the history of WWII and about the sacrifices made? I think it's extremely ironic that people are offended by it on these grounds, but I do see their point.

As for wargames vs. eurogames, I like them both. I'm less keen on wargames in which the primary objective is killing people, as opposed to siezing key areas, and this is one of my criticisms of Memoir '44, even though I do like the game.

I hope this post is sufficiently rambling to fit with the journal entry.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Catherine von Xlorp
United States
San Jose
California
flag msg tools
Sly like a duck
badge
Try the biscuits
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Apology
You know, I really wasn't going for depressing on that story. It was a published Darwin Award nominee and I was going with the anti-tank reference. I definitely did not intend to sink all levity and discussion.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
badge
Pet photographer, that's me.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Another addendum
Dear Journal,

Not much add to the OGEs. Other Geeks Entries, at the moment. I thought I might mention to myself that trimming the droopy ends off the 'tache was a bad idea. I look like an ordinary 54 year old male conformist. Hope "Dixie" doesn't mind.

Nope, the droopies need to come back. Oh well, give 'em time.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.