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Subject: Looking for a beginner wargame thar isn't card based rss

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Majin 19
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So my friend and I are both interested in trying some wargames. At the moment, the only thing we've played is Memoir '44 (no arguments as to its wargame status, ok?) The biggest issue we both have with the game is that what you can do is limited by your cards, and this means that the game is largely based on luck. Resolving the battles with dice doesn't seem to be an issue. What would be a good wargame to get next, that allows you to have far more control over your units?
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Bill Eldard
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Majin19 wrote:
So my friend and I are both interested in trying some wargames. At the moment, the only thing we've played is Memoir '44 (no arguments as to its wargame status, ok?) The biggest issue we both have with the game is that what you can do is limited by your cards, and this means that the game is largely based on luck. Resolving the battles with dice doesn't seem to be an issue. What would be a good wargame to get next, that allows you to have far more control over your units?


What period/war are you interested in?

What scale do you prefer: tactical, operational, or strategic?
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Blake Neff
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Perhaps you'd like a beginner block game like Richard III or Hammer of the Scots.
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Justin Nordstrom
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Richard IIIand Hammer are both also card-based.
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Chadgr
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Paul Koenig's Market Garden: Arnhem Bridge introduced me to some of the basics of wargaming, though it doesn't deal with zones of control or use a combat result table. Plays fast and can be quite tense. The newest version in the series Paul Koenig's Market Garden: Nijmegen Bridge has much nicer production values. Both are very reasonably priced.
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Jack Bennett
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I'm enjoying Space Empires: 4X and A Victory Denied at the moment. Both fairly simple in terms of rules, but great games. And not card-based.
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Timothy Burke
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Pick up one of the Classic AH games here on the geek or eBay.
Half of us started with Afrika Korps or Stalingrad.

Cheap money and you'll get a sense of the history of war game design as you progress in your wargaming adventures.
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Joel K
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Consider reviewing some of the Geeklists and threads that have been tagged introwargames.
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p55carroll
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JoelCFC25 wrote:
Consider reviewing some of the Geeklists and threads that have been tagged introwargames.

Yeah--like this one.
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Jeff K
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Majin19 wrote:
The biggest issue we both have with the game is that what you can do is limited by your cards, and this means that the game is largely based on luck.


Hmmm.... I wonder why it is then that I keep getting beaten by the same skillful opponent every time at card-driven wargames?
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Judd Vance
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If you like the size and scope of Memoir, but want to get rid of the cards, here are a few:

Hold the Line - It is the American Revolutionary war. You missed a chance to get it for $15 (USD) at Worthington at the Black Friday sale a couple of weeks ago.

Napoleon's War: The 100 Days - It uses the same system for Napoleonic battles. Neither have cards. This one has plastic pieces. Hold the Line does not.

Totensonntag - Fun beginner-level wargame. Easy to learn. Easy to play. Plenty of challenge.

Hope you find what you are looking for.
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David Janik-Jones
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If it's WW2 and tactical (and no card-driven) you're after I'd highly recommend Jim Krohn's remarkable Band of Brothers: Screaming Eagles. I'd argue the best tactical bang-for-the-buck and one of the very best games for focusing on tactics.

Uwe's excellent Conflict of Heroes series is another great easy leap into wargames at that scale and time period, but there are a few cards used in some scenarios to offer a few assets to players (but it's not a card-driven game).
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Joel Eddy
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A House Divided
Battle for Moscow (second edition) (this can also be found from VPG... not just in the C3i mag)
Any of Paul Koenig's Market Garden series.
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Majin 19
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Eldard wrote:
What period/war are you interested in?

What scale do you prefer: tactical, operational, or strategic?


Time period doesn't really matter much. We're more interested in playing a fun game than in actual history.

I'm definitely more interested in tactical games, though I'm not opposed to playing the other types if they're good games. I'd have to ask my friend what her preferences are.

(Really, I think I'd love to find something like Command and Conquer: The Board Game. I don't think that's a realistic expectation though.)
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Joe Moles
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you may want to look at Nuklear Winter '68. That was my first go at non-card based. Also I did a recent review that you check out here: NK '68 Review

Also any of the other references mentioned will give you a good start.
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Jason Albert
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Majin19 wrote:
The biggest issue we both have with the game is that what you can do is limited by your cards, and this means that the game is largely based on luck.


If CDGs aren’t your thing, cool. Everyone has likes and dislikes. But at some point in the future, it might be worth your while revisiting this conclusion.

And I don’t want to spin this off-track in a CDGs vs. non-CDGs direction, but CDGs often serve as excellent entry points to wargaming because the best ones provide tons of narrative, history, and color, with little relative rules heft.

Anyway, for a non-card-driven suggestion, I submit Napoleon's Triumph.
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Peter Stubner
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Take a look at Bastogne: Screaming Eagles under Siege. Available from MMP and very nice intro.

I like it better than "A Victory Lost" (another similar intro level game that is often mentioned) because the potential downtime for players isn't as bad. In AVL, the chit draw can cause looooong waits (i.e. Russian HQ combo'ed with Stakva) for the German player.

P
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Robert B
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+1 Hold the Line: Affordable price, nice components, simple rules, quick play - activation is by Action Points, so you can prioritize what units you want to activate by points, instead of by cards like in M44.

Columbia's block wargames are excellent for starters and many don't use cards, such as Quebec 1759 or Wizard Kings (depending if you want historical or fantasy based).
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Robert Stuart
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These are all good suggestions. Here's another one, a game I bought last summer. It's quick playing, simple to learn, has an intriguing mechanic, is readily available, inexpensive but attractive, and is a game you can return to over and over again, if you later decide to expand to something else: Patton's First Victory: Tunisia.
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Roger Brandon
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Coumbia Games EastFront
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Jacovis
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I'll reinforce Hold the Line and Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42 or one of the other games in the series.

I also want to agree with Jason above. My favorite wargames are card-driven in some way, and I started out thinking I hated them. Once the games clicked and I opened my mind a bit, I was blown away by Combat Commander, as well as many other CDGs. Don't dismiss all of them out of hand just because of your feelings toward Memoir is all

Cheers, and good luck!
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Steven Robinson
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Entry Level Wargames
WW1 They Shall Not Pass, Great War at Sea: Pacific Crossroads
WW2 Corps Command: Totensonntag

Low - Moderate
Sci-Fi Space Empires 4X
Middle Ages Men of Iron
Hypothetical Nuklear Winter '68
WW2 Lock n' Load Band of Heroes, Red Winter, Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! Russia 1941-1942
American Revolution Hold the Line
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David J. Mortimer
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This block game got me into war games:

Napoleon: The Waterloo Campaign, 1815

No cards and great fog of war game.

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Enrico Viglino
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Here's an interesting PnP, using some very modern ideas:

Unconditional Surrender! Case Blue
 
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Ralph Ferrari
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Tank on Tank from Lock n Load Publishing is a good intro wargame. It is a bit expensive for what you get in the box.
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