October 18, 2021

#UnboxingDay ~ Force Eagle’s War by The Gamers

Brant Guillory, 16 September 2021 ~ #UnboxingDay

Hey look!  Another modern-era hypothetical ground combat game!

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click images to enlarge

 

This hasn’t exactly been a “grail” game for me, but it is a another US vs the Red Horde shootout.  The caveat is that it’s a bit of a contrived scenario for the US to face off with the Russians in… hmmm…  Syria?  Really, Syria?  Like that would ever happen!

 

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Lots of detail on the back of the box explaining what you’re in for.  The TCS series is not a 3.5/5 on the complexity rating.  It it definitely more than that.

 

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Holy acronyms, Batman!  Anyone wondering if this a game for them will only have to read this section to see if they understand enough to know what’s in the game.

 

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There’s 2 maps, three books, a bunch of counters, and a weird, long trifold set of charts.

 

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There’s the TCS series rules, the modern expansion rules, and the Force Eagle’s War specific rules.

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The series rules show you how the op sheets work, as making your plan before executing it is central to the design of the game.

 

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There’s a nice detailed set of instructions for the op sheets in the rules.

 

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The charts are just black & white, and specifically say to remove from the book.

 

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The designer’s notes are interesting and candid, and note the need for “mature judgment” – which ought to rule out about half of the likely intended audience.

 

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The table of contents for the modern expansion hits you with the acronyms all over again.  If you got to this point, you can’t say you were surprised getting here.

 

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More charts for the modern expansion.

 

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The specific rules for this game.

 

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It’s nice that there are specific ‘teaching scenarios’ but are the others really ‘historical’?

 

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Some blank op sheets for your to doodle on.  With only one map configuration, this is definitely easier.

 

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The scenarios are not very detailed, but there are a lot of them.

 

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That tri-fold sheet full of charts share does look like the kind of charts you’d find in a late-70s issue of Dragon Magazine.

 

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The map is functional & utilitarian, but not overly attractive.

 

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Seriously, it’s kind of boring.

 

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The turn chart gives you 20-minute turns on the clock for the days you’re playing.

 

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Hey look, another big chart of stuff!

 

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The terrain chart is interesting in that it’s not on a map, nor does it include effects with the graphical ID of the terrain.

 

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There’s some color, but it almost feels accidental.

 

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Not sure why they’re advertising 860 counters on the box when there’s 80 blank white ones just hanging out on the main sheet.  There are more admin markers / blanks than there are actual units in the game.

 

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Detail of the Soviet units, with some registration issues.

 

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Detail of the US units, with some serious registration issues.  This is reason this one never got punched / played.  And because I got it second-hand, it’s not like I could call up The Gamers 30 years later and say “hey I need a new countersheet!”

 

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Yep, a lot of blanks.  There are entire games that ship with fewer total counters than this one shipped blanks.

 

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A whole sheet of nothing but admin counters.

 

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The inserts, which are always fun.  There’s a nice ‘thank you’ card (far right) from the company.  The big page on the left is a ‘catalog’ that tells you just how long ago this way based on how few games The Gamers had released at this point.  The top middle isn’t just any customer mail-in card.  It’s for PREFERRED customers!

 


Thanks for joining this month’s #UnboxingDay with the Armchair Dragoons and we hope you enjoyed our recon of our recent acquisitions.
You can always leave us your feedback in our #UnboxingDay thread, or in the comment area on this article, below.
The regiment also occasionally musters on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, and occasionally at a convention near you, once we’re allowed to hold them again.

Brant G

Editor-in-chief at Armchair Dragoons

View all posts by Brant G →

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