Monthly Archives: November 2009

Games for the Holidays

It is time to start thinking about what to get that wargamer for the coming holiday season. In light of that, I have some suggestions based on the games I have played and enjoyed. Here I break them down in terms of what that special someone likes and what they will likely want next.

Let’s start with those who have yet to play Memoir ’44, my suggestion – Memoir ’44! It’s a great game that will provide hundreds of hours of entertainment for 2 players.

Ok, ok….if you are on this site, chances are you know about Memoir ’44 so let’s see what is a good idea after that. There are a lot of expansions that I can suggest here but it would take up the whole post (see the Supplies page for ideas there). So my recommendation for the M’44 fan is the – Memoir ’44 Campaign Book:Volume I. This one adds 50+ new scenarios and ties them together in campaigns and Grand Campaigns. The Normandy Campaign is playable with just the base game of Memoir ’44 (authored by yours truly).

For more Memoir ’44 players, try the Overlord expansion. It allows up to 8 players and makes for a different play. You’ll need any one of the Battle Maps to accompany it for the full experience (Hedgerow Hell or Tigers in the Snow or the new Sword of Stalingrad).

For those M’44 players who want to get a little deeper into wargaming I strongly suggest Tide of Iron. It’s a much more challenging game but with more control, it feels a lot less random than M’44. If they already have Tide of Iron, and enjoy it, I recommend any of the expansions that have come out, they are all good (see the Supplies page for more). Tide of Iron also has more of a multi-player support with up to 4. Be warned though, it is more time demanding than M’44.

For something different yet still accessible I really enjoyed a couple from the Axis & Allies series. Axis & Allies:D-Day introduces wargame sequences through the use of cards. While Axis & Allies:Battle of the Bulge has a fluid front and deals with the classic wargame problem of supply. Though these games have a limited replay value (not scenario based) they are still a great addition to any collection.

Looking for a good multi-player wargame? I would suggest the following…

Conquest of the Empire is set in ancient Rome and is a fun classic that offers two ways to play (Classic and II). The components are amazing (and right now, the price is amazing!).

Viktory II is another excellent multi-player game that is in the vein of Risk but plays out much better.

Well, that about covers off what I would suggest for the game players holiday wishlist.

New Tide of Iron scenario

Just a quick note that the ‘Who Killed the Black Baron‘ scenario can now be found on the Battles page. Thanks very much to Barry Doyle for his help in formatting it!

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Die by the Sword …of Stalingrad – Overlord!

Sword of StalingradFor immediate dispatch to OKW from Gen. Paulus, 6th Armee

Stalingrad has proven more difficult than anticipated.  The battle raged on for longer than expected (140 minutes!)

Recon elements discovered an additional Soviet battery (Reinforcement card from the Combat deck) around the sawmill.  Made for difficult progress on the right flank.  Many casualties there.

Early progress was made in the center and the heights overlooking Stalingrad were held after a number of contests that drained a lot of our resources.  Holding the heights gave us an advantage (Medal!). Continue reading

The Sword of Stalingrad is drawn!

Mamayev Kurgan We’d gotten rusty with Memoir ’44 not having played now in some time.  As much as I wanted to get into the Overlord scenarios, it was really best to warm up to them so as not to be overwhelmed.  No better way than to play the single board scenarios (after a quick flip playtest of my own Hellcats Race to Noville scenario as a base game appetizer.  Now with more Hellcat!).

We started with the Mamayev Krugan scenario as it looked the least complicated of the two.  This scenario sees the Soviets holding the heights overlooking Stalingrad while the Germans face a daunting task of gaining them.  Three medals to the side that controls the majority of the heights! Continue reading

Sword of Stalingrad Arrives!

I was pleasantly surprised to find a Days of Wonder package in my mailbox (don’t hate me!). They had sent me a copy of the Sword of Stalingrad Battle map and the Vercors Campaign for review (Thanks Eric!). I should certainly get some plays in this weekend and will be posting AAR’s but in the meantime, I thought I would share some initial impressions on the package. Continue reading

Lest We Forget

Remembrance Day

SUICIDE IN THE TRENCHES

I knew a simple soldier boy
Who grinned at life in empty joy,
Slept soundly through the lonesome dark,
And whistled early with the lark.

In winter trenches, cowed and glum,
With crumps and lice and lack of rum,
He put a bullet through his brain.
No one spoke of him again.

You smug-faced crowds with kindling eye
Who cheer when soldier lads march by,
Sneak home and pray you’ll never know
The hell where youth and laughter go.
– Siegfried Sassoon