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Subject: AH's 1776 is 30 rss

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Seth Owen
United States
Norwich
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Not too many wargames from 1974 have held up very well. Those that have mostly featured fairly simple rules. Attempts at complicated game routines tried back then mostly didn't work out and better game mechanics have made them obsolete.
But some simpler games have retained some popularity over the years, among them 1776. Published in time for the 200th anniversary of US independence, 1776 was one of the titles that served notice to the wargame hobby that Avalon Hill was still alive.
Although the unit counters were nothing special (anachronistic NATO-style units symbols, single colors, combat factor-movement factor) the map was a notch above average for the era and helped remind players what Avalon Hill could do that rival SPI could not as far as presentation went.
The game itself was pretty simple, The most novel idea was the "tactical card" where each side selected a card for its battle strategy (line "Frontal Assault" "refuse the Left" or "Stand and Defend." Players cross referenced the selcted cards to modify the subsequent die rol on the combat results table. Although it was an "advanced" rule, most people played with it.
In that era designers weren't afraid to give players a lot of turns, even if it made the games pretty long, Playing the whole war out could last 60 turns, so there was a real epic feel to it. Keeping things under control was the fact that neither side had very many troops. The map was big and the armies small, which helped portray how vast the territory involved -- most of it wilderness, too.
Although Columbia's recent Liberty covers the same ground better, as did Avalon Hill's own We The People, 1776 is an interesting game and I certainly wouldn't mind trying it again. I'd especially like to play it with the new counters from the "Command Pressures" variant piublished in the Avalon Hill General. That variant looked like it had a big impact on game play.
 
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John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
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Louisville
Kentucky
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This game never hooked
me at all. The Revolutionary War doesn't have much appeal to me for reasons I can't put my fingers on and I have long fingers. Back then I liked a lot of counters on the board and something else...uh...TANKS! That's it.
 
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Robert Wesley
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Aberdeen
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I have to agree...
...with the BOTH of YOU! I liked the 'concept' of the 'Strategic Level Campaign' of this, but I didn't really CARE for just HOW it was 'done'. I believe that the 'S&T' with the "13:the Colonies in Revolt" game is much better in it's overall coverage and it even begins the game with Leaders and such for ALL sides concerned. "Give me Liberty" by 3W uses a modified "A House Divided" system covering this 'Campaign' too, in case someone is interested in checking that out. Those 'Tactical Cards' and the generic Unit counters of "1776", were a letdown to myself, since I would rather have fought out 'Battles' in some other sort of means. That is WHY I did end up getting the 'Oldenburg Grenadiers' Battle Games of the '4' that THEY produced and I just wish that they would have made the LAST '6' that were advertised(Check this out at one of their game's listings here-for now, this is in the "The Battle of Camden, S.C. 1780" game)cool
 
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Gerald McDaniel
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Lakewood
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I found this game many years ago at a garage sale, but have never played it. I was just lucky to have some guys willing to play some lighter wargames than this. Sounds like I haven't missed a whole lot, though, from the comments here. Still.... I may someday get it out and see what it actually looks like.
 
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Read the rulebook, plan for all contingencies, and…read the rulebook again.
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Austin
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Fun game!
I spent many hours playing the campaign game solo in junior high. Not sure why, since no one one would ever play it with me, but I really enjoyed this one. Maybe because it was such a satisfying step up from Milton Bradley's Revolutionary War-themed game, Skirmish!

Easily one of the most beautiful maps and box cover at Avalon Hill ever made for a game!
 
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