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02 Apr 2008 19:35 - 02 Apr 2008 19:36 #4573 by Gary Sax
So my wargame buddy and I always have a wargame (TS, Paths of Glory, FAB: Bulge) set up in the office. Apparently it has not gone unnoticed. I got a message today from a friend:

"Hey garysax.I saw your board games in the office an [my wargaming friend] told me that you are an expert. I would like to buy one for my husband's birthday. Do you have any recommendations? He really likes historical strategy games, and already owns Risk, Stratego etc. I need something more interesting. Any suggestions?"

So what do you guys think this means. And what would you recommend with this sort of intro? I sent her a message in reply asking a couple questions (i.e. does he like conflict (WAR) games and does he like simple games like stratego more than more complicated ones).

It's odd though, no one has ever earnestly asked something like this since I don't evangelize boardgames at all since I think that's weak sauce. I'm not going to be an anal retentive bastard and dig into his wife like a nerd about what he likes too hard. I know the guy is a grad student so I think what he's looking for is like a really light historical wargame. I was thinking of recommending Twilight Struggle, actually, but it might be a better move to recommend something way more ATlike. I don't want to recommend something super expensive either.

Any thoughts or suggestions?
Last edit: 02 Apr 2008 19:36 by Gary Sax.

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02 Apr 2008 20:35 #4576 by Mr Skeletor
Your real name is Garysax?

Ask her how much she wants to spend.

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02 Apr 2008 20:51 #4577 by mikelawson
If his limitations are Stratego and Risk, you could go with one of the more recent iterations of Risk. Another possibility is (if she doesn't mind the cost) an easy C&C game like M'44, which makes for a good transition game. Hey, there is venerable old A&A itself.

--Mike L.

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02 Apr 2008 21:48 - 02 Apr 2008 21:54 #4580 by Lagduf
Maybe you should have her get him a proper wargame? A Victory Lost, FAB The Bulge, Target Arnhem: Across Six Bridges.

Or something conflict driven with nice bits? Like Viktory II.

Hmmmm, maybe Viktory II if he knows Risk and Stratego.

Hell, tell the wife to get him Target Arnhem anyway, it's like $5 from MMP.

Commands and Colors: Ancients would be good, but maybe too expensive?
Last edit: 02 Apr 2008 21:54 by Lagduf.

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02 Apr 2008 21:57 #4582 by Ken B.
Hannibal or Twilight Struggle.


Or how about Risk: Black Ops? I hear it's the bomb.

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02 Apr 2008 22:01 - 02 Apr 2008 22:04 #4584 by Lagduf
How Complex is Twilight Struggle?

I guess it's on par with 1960? (since they're like the same and all).

I haven't read the rules to either.
Last edit: 02 Apr 2008 22:04 by Lagduf.

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03 Apr 2008 02:22 #4595 by Lagduf
What about World at War: Eisenbach Gap?

No CRTs, and it's just a dicey combat system. Don't you just roll X amount of dice, and each dice hits on Y or greater? With more hits than armor doing damage?

Of course it's alt-future/speculative history...but it's still historical.

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03 Apr 2008 04:26 - 03 Apr 2008 04:28 #4599 by billyz
Based on Stratego and Risk alone, I woud definately consider with Nexus Ops(not thematically compatible, I know, but something tells me it might be a safe and sure bet), one of the Command and Colours series, one of the more complex risk variants, one of the recent Axis and Allies series.

Maybe: Tide of Iron, Diplomacy, Dust.

These are just the things that pop into my head based on Risk and Stratego.

My personal pick would be C&C Ancients.
Last edit: 03 Apr 2008 04:28 by billyz.

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03 Apr 2008 09:35 #4606 by Aarontu
Maybe he'd like MM'44, one of the A&A games, or Twilight Struggle or something like that. If he likes Risk and history, maybe he'd really like History of the World.

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03 Apr 2008 10:00 #4613 by Gary Sax
Diplomacy and History of the World I had not considered. Good suggestions.

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03 Apr 2008 10:44 #4618 by Michael Barnes
Something to remember is that what seems simple or easy to us (EISENBACH GAP, TWILIGHT STRUGGLE) is almost insurmountably opaque to those with a very casual interest in or understanding of hobby board games.

AXIS AND ALLIES is, kinda sadly, the best fit for this situation.

VIKTORY II would actually be a good fit too.

And LOTR: THE CONFRONTATION, if he doesn't mind Middle Earth-as-history.

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03 Apr 2008 10:47 #4620 by Gary Sax
Yep, that's what I was thinking.

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03 Apr 2008 13:11 #4629 by mikoyan
I would probably go with one of the Axis and Allies iterations. Those seem to be a pretty good transition from Risk and aren't overly gamey and do somewhat have the feel of WWII.

Eisenbach Gap wouldn't be bad either as it's pretty similar ruleswise but it adds terrain and what not.

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03 Apr 2008 13:41 #4631 by Michael Barnes
Yeah, but between all those numbers on the counters, terrain rules, cardboard counters, and the hex map that's more than enough to scare away somebody who really just wants a kind of "RISK plus".

But that being said, if the situation were different and I was personally showing the person in question a game, I'd be more inclined to pull out something like EG so they could be "mentored" in it.

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03 Apr 2008 17:46 #4660 by Lagduf
Michael Barnes wrote:

Yeah, but between all those numbers on the counters, terrain rules, cardboard counters, and the hex map that's more than enough to scare away somebody who really just wants a kind of "RISK plus".

But that being said, if the situation were different and I was personally showing the person in question a game, I'd be more inclined to pull out something like EG so they could be "mentored" in it.


Yeah, maybe have his wife get him a game and then the OP could teach it to him?

But if we're going to stay away from stuff like EG then ToI is also a no-no.

I wouldn't reccomend Diplomacy for him based on the # of players it requires to be fun and because it doesn't strike me as the kind of game he wants to get in to. I'd get a game with actual mechanics where you push pieces and roll dice. The game in diplomacy is the deal making.

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