Archive For The “Features” Category
Quatre Bras, redux. Continuing the game from last week with a few different players tagged in as commanders
Don’t forget to check out the all-new Saturday Night Fights sub-forum on our site, where you can see what’s coming up and throw your outrageously-large hat in the ring to join the fun.
Michael Eckenfels, 2 October 2019
Tell us a bit about yourself – where you live, what it is you do for a living.
I’m Joni Nuutinen, a history buff and a Finnish professional software developer.
Tell us the story of how you first became interested in military history.
Growing up in the eastern part of Finland it was impossible to avoid running into the Second World War; not only did several of my family members serve, but some also perished, and living fairly close to the border with the USSR meant that I could both visit the physical remains of the battles and also experience the atmosphere such events inevitably leave behind on the border regions. (more…)
By Michael Eckenfels, 19 September
On #TBT, we bring you the occasional classic article – an older review or analysis piece we wanted to rescue
The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word “harbinger” as “one that indicates or foreshadows what is to come; a forerunner.” If a game developer could tell the future, they could take everything that will go wrong with a title before it happens and create games with such ardor and primacy that awards would become commonplace – every developer would have such an award. This is, of course, as probable as making a good giant starship-simulator game in the year 3000 A.D., but nobody’s perfect. (more…)
Jim Owczarski, 30 August 2019
I made my way back from the larger battlefields of Napoleon’s 1809 campaign in Bavaria and Austria to find the wargame community caught up in furball, conducted in the manner of the internet, about whether we all ought to call ourselves “wargamers”.
Moving briskly by all this as one does a traffic accident or somebody else being arrested, what did I learn about these battles and this campaign that might be of use to a fellow hobbyist? I will neglect the details of the campaign, most of which are well-rehearsed in several books, the most notable being Professor John Gill’s three-volume magnum opus, Thunder on the Danube. It is deservedly the normative treatment of the subject for both historians and gamers. While I have an autographed copy of the first volume, I blush to confess that I purchased all three volumes in the Kindle edition for well below market price during a recent sale. I cannot commend them highly enough.
This is a remarkably popular campaign for Napoleonic gamers. Some of this can be attributed to the presence of a commander who gave Napoleon absolute fits (the Archduke Charles) and which featured an army that, under Charles’ leadership, dealt Napoleon his first significant defeat (Aspern-Essling). It is also a bit Janus-like in that it was Napoleon’s last successful campaign while simultaneously pointing out to the attentive the cracks in his military machine that would shatter open wide in the cold of Russia three years later. Despite this, it also featured Napoleon at his resilient best, recovering from Marshal Berthier’s blundering in the Spring to achieve his victory at Wagram a few months later, so even the most Francophilic has something to love.
Michael Eckenfels, 26 August 2019
When we last let off, the Competition had pulled a LOT of “All Offers” cards, really making the end game approach quickly as my deck gets depleted faster than the Enterprise at Warp 10.
Now that the bad Trek reference is out of the way…last time the Competition took two turns in a row, but fortunately didn’t do much damage other than cleaning out Offers cards left and right. Now that it’s my/BanzaiCorp’s turn, I’m hoping to push my lead ahead just a little more.
Jim Owczarski, 23 August 2019
I would like to get a few things out of the way before I become rant-y.
Ooh, that’s a rant. It’s very rant-y. — Depending on the day, either my editor or Pikachu.
I like Professor Marco Arnaudo both as a game reviewer and as a voice within the wargame community. I am a subscriber to his channel, a listener whenever he reviews wargames, and my family will tell you I have filled many hours between Origins and my home with extended listening sessions. My son does a passable impression of his delightful diction and inflection.
Moreover, his tastes and mine often align and he has championed not just good games but good topics for games. I have even gone so far as to adopt his definition of what is and is not a “wargame”, but that is another discussion.
Moving on, I want to be very clear that I am a fan and friend of David Thompson, game designer and all around good fellow. In other circumstances full disclosure would have required me to mention that I was a playtester on his Undaunted when it had a different name and was in a different set of hands. He has been a guest of the Armchair Dragoons at Origins and puts a great deal of effort and thought into his designs. Nothing I write here should be taken as diminishing that.