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Subject: Best mid-complexity WWII game? rss

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Dan Buterbaugh
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Just curious which game people would recommend for a mid-complexity WW2 system. I've played Squad Leader, and thought it was just about right. How do World in Flames, Advanced Tobruk, Panzer Grenadier, or ... compare? Thanks!

 
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robin goblin
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Well, that there's a mixed bag...Squad Leader, ATS, and Panzer Grenadier are all tactical games (add in ASL and Lock 'n' Load and you've got all the major tactical system-type games, though there is the TCS series from The Gamers/MMP as well?)...World in Flames is a strategic game, like 3rd Reich, A World at War, Totaler Krieg, etc.

I'm on the ASL road, which is high complexity (Squad Leader on steroids?), but learnable via the starter kit route....Advanced Tobruck System is like ASL, though lower complexity level (I haven't played it, though some of the guys in my gaming group like it), and Panzer Grenadier is another step down in terms of complexity (and slightly higher scale: what is it, platoon instead of squad? Something like that) from ATS and is quite popular, though, again I haven't played it. I have read the basic rule set and it is substantially less complex than the other options....

As I said, I'm on the ADvanced Squad Leader road via the 1st starter kit (second coming soon!) and am enjoying it thoroughly. As complex as the system is, it is actually a *lot* of fun to play, with tense games subject to big swings resulting from the luck component (pretty substantial), while dependent on getting your tactics just right (you pay when you get them wrong!!)...I played the same scenario twice a couple of weeks ago, once as the Americans, once as the Germans and the plays came out very differently, but lots and lots of fun....

Robin
 
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Jeff Paul
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Hmmm, if you thought SL was just right, why change?

Moving to ASL is a number of steps up in complexity, and has the added side effect of being "almost the same but not quite" (I find that even years after moving from SL to ASL, I find myself searching the ASL rulebook for some rule I am sure exists, only to discover that the rule in question comes from SL...

Panzer Grenadier is great in some respects. Modern gorgeous components. The engine is also more modern and fast playing than ASL (or even SL). It uses an activation system which enhances interaction (instead of IgoUgo, in each activation one uses a few units, then you opponent activates a few, then you, etc - I find this makes the game "flow" a lot more). Unfortunately, each module is stand-alone. You might think this is a good thing - but it has lead to inconsistancies in the rules. As well, the company (nor any fan) has not stepped forward to create a consolidated FAQ - which is unfortunate since it is a beautiful presentation and has at its core a great concept.

Hope this helps.

Good luck in your search

(Oh, and I have to add - my ultimate favourite is Up Front. I know it is out of print - but if you can snag a copy - get it
 
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robin goblin
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Hey, I just got a copy of Up Front! Haven't had a chance to read the rules yet.....re the ASL rulebook, it is at the printer right now....

Robin
 
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Mark Mokszycki
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Are you looking for tactical or operational? Two very excellent games I've had the pleasure of trying recently are GD '41 (part of the Tactical Combat series by The Gamers) and Kasserine (operational level game by GMT). Both games score very high marks, in my opinion.
 
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Mark Mokszycki
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Incidentally, both games I just mentioned fall in the "medium complexity" (for a wargame) category.
 
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Jay Richardson
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There are so many possibilities to choose from!

But for my two cents: take a look at Russian Campaign, an old AH classic that's still in print (from another publisher) and very popular; and EastFront, a Columbia wood block game that's also been in print forever and is also very popular.

These two cover the same subject matter, but do so in completely different ways...
 
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Check out Barbarossa to Berlin.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/3353
 
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Dan Buterbaugh
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I like Squad Leader, but it's way OOP. All the copies on eBay are beat up or in Europe, which costs way too much for shipping.
ASL sounds a bit more complicated than I would like. Panzer Grenadier sounds promising, though I'm surprised there isn't just one ruleset for everything. Never heard of Up Front. I will look into it. Not sure about Eastfront. I've checked out the website, and it may be ok. I think I like smaller, tactical stuff more than corps/division level battles.
 
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Jeff Paul
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Up Front is even harder to get than SL (sorry)

Also, I may have misled you slightly. There is only one rule book for Panzer Grenadier. It is available for free on their website www.avalanchepress.com - so check it out.

Unfortunately, new terrain and other features are introduced with each new module, as well as some scenario special rules (that are different without any really good reason - for example there is light forest and light woods. From different modules. But identical in play).

Like I said, I think PG is almost a great game. Just a few faqs short :-)
 
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Dan Buterbaugh
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A question on PG: Does it use map boards similar to SL, or just regular poster maps? I REALLY like the heavy cardboard used by SL.
 
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