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Subject: Anybody Playing With Fire? That is--Fire Team, Open Fire or Firepower? rss

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A.T. Selvaggio
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These three games seem forgotten, rarely played and eclipsed. Anyone playing these? Anyone say they have stood the test of time and are still worthy of play?

Firepower
Fire Team
Open Fire

Are these part of the 80s Greatest Hits collection?
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John Kovacs
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I've owned Firepower for years but have never played it - and it even has a solitaire scenario!

I bought it thinking it was going to be a modern (post-WWII, anyway) Squad Leader type game. Not exactly; the level is actually lower at man-to-man and the chit activation keeps everyone on their toes.

I think I'm going to have to make a resolution for 2012 to get some of my unplayed games (well over half of my collection) onto the table. And Firepower would be one of them.
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j page
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I modified Firepower to play as a miniaturs game (which I think it was originaly). Helps cut down the on board counter clutter. Play a few times a year. On occasion I solo the board version to prepare for a miniature version.
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bruinrefugee
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Infomanohio wrote:
I've owned Firepower for years but have never played it - and it even has a solitaire scenario!

I bought it thinking it was going to be a modern (post-WWII, anyway) Squad Leader type game. Not exactly; the level is actually lower at man-to-man and the chit activation keeps everyone on their toes.

I think I'm going to have to make a resolution for 2012 to get some of my unplayed games (well over half of my collection) onto the table. And Firepower would be one of them.


I love Firepower, although like anything else (any SL variant) I'm convinced I don't play the tank rules right. Apparently that's where my own, ahem, "firepower" is a little short.
 
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Erik Nicely
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I have Fire Team and planned on playing about a year ago but it never happened. I just scored Firepower in a math trade and intend to play it.Force lists from 50 countries? Sounds cool to me.
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Pelle Nilsson
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Fire Team was one of my first wargames, and IIRC I got to play it once or twice back then, ca 1990. I solitaired a small scenario some years ago. I like it. You draw action point chits, but instead of using them immediately you can save them on units, and use later to activate larger formations simultaneously. Seems to work well. You can plan for a huge offensive with all your units, but might have to wait for the end of the turn, or you can attack with smaller groups of units quicker. Also point costs are different for each side, so the soviets are almost forced to activate as platoons to get anything done, while the US player can afford to activate individual squads/vehicles more often. Lots of nice chrome like different helicopters, weapons teams, and crew weapons that can be assigned to squads. Probably deserves to be played more often.

Could be a bit more varied scenarios and maps. There seems to have been plans to make more modules, but I don't think there ever was.

I added it to the bgg database many years ago (before the database crash sometime in the mid-00's that erased all trace of whom had contributed what game up to that point).
 
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Pelle Nilsson
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Open Fire is Ambush! with tanks. No one seems to like it? Anyway because I already had 1 to 3 copies of everything else Ambush!-related (I sold a few backup copies since back then) I had to buy Open Fire as well. But I got a copy missing a rulebook, so then I had to buy another copy. Thus I have two copies. But I never played it. It just doesn't sound very fun to more around a platoon of tanks on adventures? A squad of soldiers like in Ambush! is lots of fun, but tanks just feel so impersonal. Also the combat system seems quite complex with big tables and details.

I think the solitaire system, using event markers (like in Shell Shock!) is sound. It must really take a way a lot of pain in creating scenarios, at the small cost of giving some hints as to where enemies might appear, but you will often understand that quickly in Ambush! too.

What I like the least is that unlike Ambush!, where care has been taken to make sure the player NEVER have to think for the other side, in Open Fire the designers opted to instead let the player make choices like "move the safest route" or "move the best route" for an enemy unit. I don't think that's a good way to design a solitaire game. If I want to think for the other side I can just as well play a two-player game vs myself.
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Judy Krauss
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atsgamer wrote:
These three games seem forgotten, rarely played and eclipsed. Anyone playing these? Anyone say they have stood the test of time and are still worthy of play?

Firepower
Fire Team
Open Fire

Are these part of the 80s Greatest Hits collection?


Not forgotten by me! Firepower is one of my all-time favorite games (and it's by my favorite game designer, Craig Taylor. IMHO, it's the best detailed, tactical, individual soldier/weapons game in existence. thumbsup

Fire Team is a good, detailed, tactical squad-level game by another of my favorite designers, Jon Southard (who also designed Tokyo Express, which is my favorite solitaire game).

Open Fire, as was mentioned above, was an attempt to use an Ambush!-type solitaire system with tanks rather than individual soldiers. I think that, in comparison to Ambush, it was not that good of a game, although a player that really likes tank games (and who hasn't already played Ambush or Battle Hymn yet, might find it worthwhile.
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Hidden Among the Leaves
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I fully agree. Firepower is one of my favorite wargames. Deep enough, with a normal learning curve. It plays wonderfully and one can simulate any small arm skirmish he can imagine. Highly recomended.

Open Fire is the ugly brother of Ambush/Battle Hymn

M.
 
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Duncan R.
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I used to play a fair amount of Firepower. It deserves to be forgotten. Terrible game.
 
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Reloc 8
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I played heaps of Fire Team as a child/teenager. It was my second war game, after Western Front Tank Leader. I found it a step up in complexity from WFTL but very manageable. I played it for a good few years regularly - say once a month for 4 or 5 years. Still have it somewhere in the parents house up in the attic.

The unit activation system was very good even with the benefit of hindsight If I recall correctly, you draw random chits which give you activation points, use smaller chits to do something immediately with a very few units, or save them to activate a larger formation - made for tense decision making processes.

That description of the unit activation sounds more 'gamey' than the practice of it.

As much as I'm not claiming to be a great student of tactics, I had a deep interest in NATO v Warsaw Pact scenarios and literature, and the outcomes on the map seemed to me to pass muster as regards realism.

From what I can remember though, I think I found the combat resolution to be a little fiddly.

I'd say Fire Team is still worth a play but truth be told when I get around to re-visiting this theme, I think I'll be looking to pick up a Lock n Load game or two.

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John Kovacs
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There's another "fire" out there - Firefight. A U.S. Army sponsored SPI game demonstrating the lethality of modern weapons systems.
 
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Joel Langenfeld
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usrlocal wrote:
I haven't played it yet, but I'm pretty sure that Firepower still gets played regularly. Having looked it up again for this thread, I just noticed that it's yet another S. Craig Taylor design. Man, that guy cranked out a lot of high-quality stuff!


Maybe so, but for years my poster-child for needless chrome was the "melee with man in tree" rule.
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Dave Langdon
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Thumbs up for Firepower, plays well in a campaign setting!
 
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Art Bugorski
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Infomanohio wrote:
I've owned Firepower for years but have never played it - and it even has a solitaire scenario!

I bought it thinking it was going to be a modern (post-WWII, anyway) Squad Leader type game. Not exactly; the level is actually lower at man-to-man and the chit activation keeps everyone on their toes.


Are there any modern war games like this? I was really looking forward to Unpublished Prototype before it became obviously vaporware.
 
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Jude wrote:
Not forgotten by me! Firepower is one of my all-time favorite games (and it's by my favorite game designer, Craig Taylor. IMHO, it's the best detailed, tactical, individual soldier/weapons game in existence. thumbsup

Fire Team is a good, detailed, tactical squad-level game by another of my favorite designers, Jon Southard (who also designed Tokyo Express, which is my favorite solitaire game).


Judy and I seem to run in the same circles. I really enjoy Firepower. It's good fun FTF or solitaire. With vehicles, it can get cumbersome, but it is excellent squad vs. squad.

Fire Team is also good fun, but at the next level up (each unit is a squad or team, whereas Firepower is man to man.) There is a lot of hardware to explore here too, but the emphasis is on the soft factors (morale, fear). Firepower is focused much more on the hard factors (weapon range, penetration, rate of fire, blast radius).

Craig Taylor is an incredibly prolific designer, and very interesting to talk to. Jon Southard went supernova, producing a spate of really good games within a few years, then quietly bowed out of the scene--gaming's loss.

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j page
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Maybe so, but for years my poster-child for needless chrome was the "melee with man in tree" rule.[/q]

We will see who laughs last the next time you need to eliminate an enemy soldier who is on the left side, crouching, level 2, in a tree and you don't have the rules to deal with it!
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J.L. Robert
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Jude wrote:
Open Fire, as was mentioned above, was an attempt to use an Ambush!-type solitaire system with tanks rather than individual soldiers. I think that, in comparison to Ambush, it was not that good of a game, although a player that really likes tank games (and who hasn't already played Ambush or Battle Hymn yet, might find it worthwhile.


If you want anonymous tanks rolling around the countryside, then Open Fire would be it.

But the real appeal for many to B-17 was the personal touch of naming crewmen and living vicariously through their 25 mission run. To create that experience with a solo tank game, the choice would be Patton's Best.

I found Open Fire to be bland and just not as gripping an adventure as Ambush!
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Ok, not just man in tree hex, but man actually in tree. I think in one of our games, my buddy put a man in a tree. One of my guys lobs a grenade into the tree hex, but the blast didn't kill the enemy soldier. A blast that doesn't kill a soldier will stun him, so we had to figure out how far he fell and whether he was killed by the fall!

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Judy Krauss
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I used to run the Firepower tournament at Avaloncon using a fairly simple scenario where both sides had the same soldier/equipment mix. The tournament rules and sheets are available in the game files section.
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Judy Krauss
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J.L.Robert wrote:
Jude wrote:
Open Fire, as was mentioned above, was an attempt to use an Ambush!-type solitaire system with tanks rather than individual soldiers. I think that, in comparison to Ambush, it was not that good of a game, although a player that really likes tank games (and who hasn't already played Ambush or Battle Hymn yet, might find it worthwhile.


If you want anonymous tanks rolling around the countryside, then Open Fire would be it.

But the real appeal for many to B-17 was the personal touch of naming crewmen and living vicariously through their 25 mission run. To create that experience with a solo tank game, the choice would be Patton's Best.

I found Open Fire to be bland and just not as gripping an adventure as Ambush!


Agreed.
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