Recommend
15 
 Thumb up
 Hide
74 Posts
Prev «  1 , 2 , 3  Next »   | 

Wargames» Forums » General

Subject: Newer Wargamer Question on "Wargame" Definition rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Lucius Cornelius
United States
flag msg tools
badge
Lord Protector of Nothing in Particular
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Due to the lack of consensus among wargamers, only very self-confident non-wargamers may define it for sure
albeit incorrectly.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rob Ryan
United States
Las Vegas
Nevada
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
No
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bill Lawson
United States
Rutland
Vermont
flag msg tools
I drink and I know things
badge
Night gathers and now my watch begins
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
knatebaker wrote:
I've played a few games of ASL here and there, and maybe some card driven war games, but have never really gotten an exact definition. Now I'm not necessarily looking for that definition, but I am wondering...

Is this considered a War Game: Rivet Wars: Eastern Front


Its about war , if you like it play it. Who cares what anyone thinks. Just for the record though we call them wargames. Not war games. One word.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Darrell Hanning
United States
Jacksonville
Florida
flag msg tools
badge
We will meet at the Hour of Scampering.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm skipping this frakking dance. My feet are tired.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Schulz
United States
Saint Michael
Minnesota
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Personally, I don't think Rivet Wars is a wargame, but Rivets
I think is. Go figure.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Stuart
United States
Los Alamos
New Mexico
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The problem is, that we're lacking professional game societies, and specifically, a (or more than one) professional wargame society. Only with a professional society could we define a wargame, and from there, interdisciplinary games.

Let me give an example: we have scientific and mathematical societies throughout the world, that define their respective disciplines (physics societies define, and have come to agree on, what constitutes 'physics', biological societies what constitutes 'biology', engineering societies what constitutes 'engineering', and so forth). What is physics? It's what physics societies define it to be (and they all agree). Then, these societies can define interdisciplinary fields, such as 'biophysics', or 'biophysical engineering', or create new subfields, such as 'environmental engineering'. And so forth.

I can only guess what the International Society of Board Wargamers would call Rivet Wars: Eastern Front. From what I've been able to read about the game, my guess is that, in joint agreement with the International Society of Miniatures Wargamers and the International Society of Eurogamers, it would be called a 'miniatures-based Euro wargame'.
3 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Dorosh
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Tactical Wargamer's Journal
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
bob_santafe wrote:
The problem is, that we're lacking professional game societies, and specifically, a (or more than one) professional wargame society. Only with a professional society could we define a wargame, and from there, interdisciplinary games.

Let me give an example: we have scientific and mathematical societies throughout the world, that define their respective disciplines (physics societies define, and have come to agree on, what constitutes 'physics', biological societies what constitutes 'biology', engineering societies what constitutes 'engineering', and so forth). What is physics? It's what physics societies define it to be (and they all agree). Then, these societies can define interdisciplinary fields, such as 'biophysics', or 'biophysical engineering', or create new subfields, such as 'environmental engineering'. And so forth.

I can only guess what the International Society of Board Wargamers would call Rivet Wars: Eastern Front. From what I've been able to read about the games, my guess is that, in joint agreement with the International Society of Miniatures Wargamers and the International Society of Eurogamers, it would be called a 'miniatures-based Euro wargame'.



* * * *

Quote:
From time to time, people of various persuasions wonder aloud about that millenial day when there'll be an organization that regularizes wargaming in the same way that the Chess Federation oversees chess and the PGA organizes golf, etc. My response is usually a loud snort and a "not bloody likely." When pressed for more rational comment, I answer as follows:

1. All the leagues, unions, federations and whatever that have professionalized and regularized other sports and games are dealing with only one game with one set of rules...In wargaming, one is faced with hundreds of games...

2. Wargaming is even less a spectator sport than chess (its closest professionalized analog). Chess only penetrated the public consciousness when Bobby Fischer managed to up the ante into the hundred-grand class. Incidentally, the buzz over chess (in the U.S.) died out pretty quickly once Fischer went back into the woodwork. Relatively few people are really interested in chess; even fewer are interested in wargaming. And chess has been around a lot longer than conventional civilian wargaming.

3. Much of what motivates people to play wargames has nothing to do with games and competition, per se. Many people play simply for information or as an exercise. I play for competition (I'll play almost any game with a grim determination to win), but that doesn't mean that I'm the archetypical wargamer; a sizeable number of people don't much care who wins - they just play.

Redmond A. Simonsen, MOVES, February/March 1976


I had written a blog post about this article before with my own ideas on whether a league was necessary or not; I won't repeat it here as it never touched on the point you raise. Frankly, I never thought that as a governing body, it would be necessary simply to define what it would include, or not.

The conversation gets more absurd every time it is opened. I think that would be one more reason NOT to have a society or league - simply to avoid those profitless conversations altogether.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher O
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Summer grasses / All that remains / Of soldiers' dreams. - Basho.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Some people (including myself) will consider this a wargame. Others will not.

It looks fun and light, and I hope people enjoy it for what it is.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
suicide puppet
msg tools
mb
No. But it is a war themed board game. Again, if it's fun who cares...
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gordon Watson
United Kingdom
Banstead
Surrey - United Kingdom
flag msg tools
ASL - other tactical wargames call it Sir.
badge
Beneath this mask there is an idea.....and ideas are bulletproof.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Scurvodsky wrote:

A wargame (as understood by the long time wargame community) is a game which involves a map and playing pieces (designating military troops) which move on the map to fulfill the victory conditions of the game which usually involve gaining (or keeping) control of certain geographical areas. A wargame is meant to simulate (to a greater or lesser degree) a military conflict which has happened in history or which could have possibly happened.


The last sentence, for me, is simply a sub-division, of wargames, i.e. 'historical' wargames. Fantasy, sci-fi or alternative-history games which exhibit all of the same rules facets to qualify under your first clause, would still all qualify as wargames, just not historical wargames.

The horse is dead.....long live the horse.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Keegan Fink
United States
Havertown
PA
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm just gonna leave this here...

15 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Herman
United States
New York
Unspecified
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
knatebaker wrote:
I've played a few games of ASL here and there, and maybe some card driven war games, but have never really gotten an exact definition. Now I'm not necessarily looking for that definition, but I am wondering...

Is this considered a War Game: Rivet Wars: Eastern Front


I have been doing this for a while and at one level war games are just another kind of game. Most traditional strategy games, as opposed to games of chance, are focused on competition where superior play prevails. War games are an extension of this genre, while attempting to deliver historical insight.

My career originated at the simulation end of this spectrum where competitive play was usually an after thought to the solitaire use of the Wargame's ability to teach history. Competitive play was enabled through 'what if' variants. Some of the most popular Wargame's were ones where the historical situation was naturally balanced or offered historical moments not taken by the commanders that in hindsight validated a sense of competitive balance (e.g., Gettysburg).

From my perspective this genre lives along a spectrum that covers historically themed games to simulations. Gamers know it when they see it, but the break points on that spectrum will never achieve a community consensus.

Just another human's view

Mark
16 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Stuart
United States
Los Alamos
New Mexico
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Michael Dorosh wrote:
bob_santafe wrote:
The problem is, that we're lacking professional game societies, and specifically, a (or more than one) professional wargame society. Only with a professional society could we define a wargame, and from there, interdisciplinary games.

Let me give an example: we have scientific and mathematical societies throughout the world, that define their respective disciplines (physics societies define, and have come to agree on, what constitutes 'physics', biological societies what constitutes 'biology', engineering societies what constitutes 'engineering', and so forth). What is physics? It's what physics societies define it to be (and they all agree). Then, these societies can define interdisciplinary fields, such as 'biophysics', or 'biophysical engineering', or create new subfields, such as 'environmental engineering'. And so forth.

I can only guess what the International Society of Board Wargamers would call Rivet Wars: Eastern Front. From what I've been able to read about the games, my guess is that, in joint agreement with the International Society of Miniatures Wargamers and the International Society of Eurogamers, it would be called a 'miniatures-based Euro wargame'.



* * * *

Quote:
From time to time, people of various persuasions wonder aloud about that millenial day when there'll be an organization that regularizes wargaming in the same way that the Chess Federation oversees chess and the PGA organizes golf, etc. My response is usually a loud snort and a "not bloody likely." When pressed for more rational comment, I answer as follows:

1. All the leagues, unions, federations and whatever that have professionalized and regularized other sports and games are dealing with only one game with one set of rules...In wargaming, one is faced with hundreds of games...

2. Wargaming is even less a spectator sport than chess (its closest professionalized analog). Chess only penetrated the public consciousness when Bobby Fischer managed to up the ante into the hundred-grand class. Incidentally, the buzz over chess (in the U.S.) died out pretty quickly once Fischer went back into the woodwork. Relatively few people are really interested in chess; even fewer are interested in wargaming. And chess has been around a lot longer than conventional civilian wargaming.

3. Much of what motivates people to play wargames has nothing to do with games and competition, per se. Many people play simply for information or as an exercise. I play for competition (I'll play almost any game with a grim determination to win), but that doesn't mean that I'm the archetypical wargamer; a sizeable number of people don't much care who wins - they just play.

Redmond A. Simonsen, MOVES, February/March 1976


I had written a blog post about this article before with my own ideas on whether a league was necessary or not; I won't repeat it here as it never touched on the point you raise. Frankly, I never thought that as a governing body, it would be necessary simply to define what it would include, or not.

The conversation gets more absurd every time it is opened. I think that would be one more reason NOT to have a society or league - simply to avoid those profitless conversations altogether.


I can't say I necessarily disagree with you. However, let me charge once more into the breach, before I retire in defeat: I think a wargame society would in the end save a lot of time now spent on fruitless discussion, would help stimulate systematic growth of the hobby, and would help us more productively focus on the things we really enjoy: playing wargames, talking about them, reviewing them, discussing relevant history about them.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jon Gautier

Rhinebeck
New York
msg tools
badge
mbmbmbmbmb
bob_santafe wrote:
I think a wargame society would in the end save a lot of time now spent on fruitless discussion, would help stimulate systematic growth of the hobby, and would help us more productively focus on the things we really enjoy: playing wargames, talking about them, reviewing them, discussing relevant history about them.


Yes! Get started on forming that society and let us know how you make out. Make sure you have a mission statement and by laws. Try to get a good number of people for the board of directors who together represent the hobby as a whole. You may want to form up as a 501(c)(3) or (4)--consult an attorney and a tax professional. Get that website set up. You might need to hire a small staff at first, maybe a secretary and an outreach/membership person. Will you have actual offices or just virtual? Where and when will the annual meeting be? Miami in January, I hope. Great stuff; best of luck.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim Ransom
United States
Jacksonville
Florida
flag msg tools
badge
"Tenacity, Dick. Stay with the bastard until he's on the bottom." LCDR Mush Morton to LT Richard H. O'Kane, USS WAHOO (SS 238)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
bob_santafe wrote:
I can't say I necessarily disagree with you. However, let me charge once more into the breach, before I retire in defeat: I think a wargame society would in the end save a lot of time now spent on fruitless discussion, would help stimulate systematic growth of the hobby, and would help us more productively focus on the things we really enjoy: playing wargames, talking about them, reviewing them, discussing relevant history about them.


But isn't the "fruitless discussion" part of the reason we all keep coming back?

Seriously, I don't mind it. If I get tired of reading about it, or don't choose to engage, then it's easy to just tune out.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Dorosh
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Tactical Wargamer's Journal
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Dieroll Honker wrote:
bob_santafe wrote:
I think a wargame society would in the end save a lot of time now spent on fruitless discussion, would help stimulate systematic growth of the hobby, and would help us more productively focus on the things we really enjoy: playing wargames, talking about them, reviewing them, discussing relevant history about them.


Yes! Get started on forming that society and let us know how you make out. Make sure you have a mission statement and by laws. Try to get a good number of people for the board of directors who together represent the hobby as a whole. You may want to form up as a 501(c)(3) or (4)--consult an attorney and a tax professional. Get that website set up. You might need to hire a small staff at first, maybe a secretary and an outreach/membership person. Will you have actual offices or just virtual? Where and when will the annual meeting be? Miami in January, I hope. Great stuff; best of luck.


In all honesty, I always thought the Charles S. Roberts Awards were presented on behalf of some governing body like that. I was actually all impressed every time I saw that a game had been awarded one, because I pictured men in suits, with haircuts and ironed white collars, sitting at a boardroom table, discussing in detail the relative merits of new offerings, plotting out pros and cons on a white-board, and coming to their decisions while standing at the window of their office tower, perhaps overlooking Central Park.

I then made the mistake of visiting the CSR website and trying to figure out who and what was behind it all, and finding out it was really just a popularity contest where anyone could submit nominations, and the process was thrown open to a general online vote, the statistics and results of which are never - to my knowledge - revealed.

The fantasy is always better than the reality. I had actually thought my university experiences were going to be in a limestone building covered in ivy, with oak-panelled classrooms and professors in tweed jackets with elbow patches, too. Not some 1970s post-modern concrete and glass industrial spread, with hard plastic chairs and teachers in business casual.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Simon DeS***
United Kingdom
Sheffield
SouthYorkshire
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
im going to suggest that the definition of game genres is sort of like the definition of musical genres, some do have technical definitions, but many (modern rock, metal, urban, and dance music genres in particular) are mostly defined and grouped by their scene.

I like breakbeat music quite a bit. But the uk breaks scene has many producers making records that could be defined as either hiphop, or alternative dance of one form or another, and a few that could even be grouped under house etc. Genres like indie rock, or Brit pop are similar, they once had a technical definition but quickly became a scene and a sound or ethos.

Gamers on this site would typically get a little irritated (irritated is perhaps not the best word here), if when describing their hobby someone said, "oh you mean like monopoly or risk". The reason for this, is that these games fail to really describe what their hobby is about, but they are technically board games.

Its the same with war gamers. Memoir 44 might meet most technical definitions of a war game. It has command and control limitations simulated within it at some level, and different troop types. However i suspect if i tried to argue with lots of folks in this subdomain that it was a war game, too many i'd effectively be saying, i don't really understand what the hobby means to you, and we don't have a lot in common.

Therefore i would suggest the best way to define a war game, is in reference to the most hardcore of war games, the ones which most in the hobby consider, at least at an iconic level, of being the most definitive games. So Case Blue / OCS, ASL etc. How similar is the game in question to these types of games both in terms of its design, its philosophy (what i mean by this is intended purpose really) aesthetic, intended audience etc. I would suggest that rivet wars is not a war game, because it doesn't have a great deal in common with these games based on the criteria above. Its not part of the wargamers scene.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
suicide puppet
msg tools
mb
And again, for what it's worth:

Wargame-A simulation that is resolved solely through military means where abstraction is kept to a minimum to emphasize realistic conditions as much as possible in the simulation (i.e. the consideration of terrain or weather affecting play unlike Battleship where only the grid mechanic determines success or failure) and scale is imposed as a general guide. Large, or ‘Monster’ wargames often have a supply line element (some smaller scale simulations will have this as well) that does not necessarily form an economic method of resolution (as it might in the next category). These include, but are not limited to, miniature-based wargames, hex and counter wargames, and actual real-time live members acting out a scenario by actual military unit(s).

Conflict Simulator (ConSim)-A simulation that involves not only a military aspect but one or more of the following in resolving the simulation:

Politics
Economics
Religion
Social

Often will follow the standards of a wargame in keeping abstraction to a minimum but is not limited in this aspect. Can be found everywhere from the United Nations (United Nations-1982-Yaquinto-U.N. Derivative) to Think Tanks, Corporations, Political Groups and High Level Military Groups (Battle for Baghdad-MCS Group) as well as the Consumer Market (Twilight Struggle, 1989, Labyrinth-The War on Terror, etc).

Confrontation (plus its expansion), produced by Gamescience in 1967, is an early example of this type of simulation in the consumer market. Other simulations exist that emphasize economics, politics, etc. as resolution mechanics.

War-Themed Board Game-A board game that uses abstract military elements for resolution but trades off traditional wargaming elements for more traditional board game mechanics and is thus more abstracted (i.e. less realistic). Tide of Iron-(FFG) and Memoir ’44 (Days of Wonder) fall under this category and are the descendents of board games like Chopper Strike, Carrier Strike, Sub Search, etc.

EuroGame-The successor to social games produced for the family market that includes board games, card games and games with one or more unique components. The casual game of table top gaming. Design may be informed by many other games and ‘mash-ups’ are often formed in this category. They rarely involve any form of violence and tend to be co-op.
3 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roger Hobden
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The BGG "wargame subdomain" should be re-named the "historical wargame subdomain", where Space Marines, Wizards, and especially Trolls are NOT welcome. arrrh
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rick Thompson
United States
Taylor
Michigan
flag msg tools
badge
Old Ironsides being overflown by the Blue Angels
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Mallet wrote:
The BGG "wargame subdomain" should be re-named the "historical wargame subdomain", where Space Marines, Wizards, and especially Trolls are NOT welcome. arrrh


Are Trolls truly ever welcome?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
suicide puppet
msg tools
mb
When 'historical' equals something other than WWII I'm all about it. 'History' happened 1 second ago.

Watch.

This sentence is now in the past.

That's 'history'

But I do agree we need more than just a general category where everything just kind of gets buried. At least break it up into eras. Then if you step in you know what to expect. It won't solve this debate but it might ease the congestion.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Enrico Viglino
United States
Eugene
OR
flag msg tools
Slowed - BGG's moderation policies have driven me partially from here
badge
http://thegamebox.byethost15.com/smf/
Avatar
mb
domus_ludorum wrote:


Rivet Wars = looks like a wargame.


It LOOKS very much like it is not one. Start throwing a lot
of plastic pieces into a game, and it immediately becomes suspect
in my mind. Which is to say it is aiming at a demographic which is
not the wargaming hobby.

Totally different situation if this is using the word as applies
to the minis hobby though - I know the warhammer guys use the term,
but I don't know how much the historical side of minis players
includes them in their hobby.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Enrico Viglino
United States
Eugene
OR
flag msg tools
Slowed - BGG's moderation policies have driven me partially from here
badge
http://thegamebox.byethost15.com/smf/
Avatar
mb
Michael Dorosh wrote:


I had written a blog post about this article before with my own ideas on whether a league was necessary or not; I won't repeat it here as it never touched on the point you raise. Frankly, I never thought that as a governing body, it would be necessary simply to define what it would include, or not.

The conversation gets more absurd every time it is opened. I think that would be one more reason NOT to have a society or league - simply to avoid those profitless conversations altogether.


In a sense, these mass collections of hobbyists serve as just such
associations - without any formality. You'll be pleased to know
that we have these discussions here - and you're often in them.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Hunga Dunga
Canada
Oakville
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Asking if something is a wargame is like asking which direction a toilet paper roll should be mounted: no matter what your answer, someone will think you're being perverse.
10 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Enrico Viglino
United States
Eugene
OR
flag msg tools
Slowed - BGG's moderation policies have driven me partially from here
badge
http://thegamebox.byethost15.com/smf/
Avatar
mb
suicidepuppet wrote:
When 'historical' equals something other than WWII I'm all about it. 'History' happened 1 second ago.

Watch.

This sentence is now in the past.

That's 'history'



So? It would still serve the point that the poster intended.

Hypotheticals wouldn't count UNLESS (like say Gulf Strike) they
ended up doing a pretty reasonable job of simulating the war that
DID happen.

I don't agree with that strict definition, but I can understand it.
Once you bend at all, there is a desire to go further.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Prev «  1 , 2 , 3  Next »   | 
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.