Based on a large online data collection effort back in 2006, the collaboration of GAMA, More »
This week, GARPA dips into the pre-order troves of some wargame companies, as well as More »
Is there an end in sight to the war? For the Zulus, there is… mwuahahahaha
By Brant Guillory, GrogDude
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One More Promotion
This closes out our military developments in this scenario.
The Mandekalu Cavalry…
…can be maddeningly hard to kill sometimes
This Tuesday, Shogun 2 strikes fear into the eyes of the enemy.
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Image & Caption Lloyd Sabin
Our own Undercovergeek marches into Stalingrad, and comes out with this review of the action.
Lucky 13 April, 2014
I’m a terrible German officer, but that’s ok, I’m a terrible Russian officer as well.
It’s a testimony to Lock & Load’s Heroes of Stalingrad that it has been able to teach me that. As my numerous attempts at claiming or defending small patches of land surrounding Stalingrad mounted up, it occurred to me that neither Stalin or Hitler had made the right choice in putting me in charge. Either that or this game has a much more devious AI than I bargained for, or I’m just crap at throwing digital dice.
Heroes of Stalingrad first appeared on my radar after getting lost in a Matrix Games forum a long time ago. I should be honest at this point and say I have never played a Lock & Load board game, never played Advanced Squad Leader, and never actually played a WWII themed board game at all. But I have played Blood Royale with a tricorn hat on, because I thought it was the same as Napoleons.
However, I was there at Bastogne commanding the Commodore 64’s finest in Battle of the Bulge, I was there on the fields of Gettyburg in North and South, all the way through to the first Combat Mission and up to and including Market Garden, where it’s safe to say that Frost and Urquhart are also probably thinking about removing my commission. When it comes to losing my men of the digital variety, I’m confident in my CV. So when I first saw the screen shots of small, squad based battles in and around the familiar railway yards and factory buildings, and extra immersion created by having my own set of officers and heroes, I was delighted to have found my next set of pixeltruppen to throw hopelessly into the mincer of battle.
For me personally Heroes bears a great amount of responsibility. It is my great hope of board game to PC game crossover. I see them in there, through their game’s club windows, laughing and joking, throwing their dice and clapping each other on the back with their ‘board game players’ camaraderie, telling stories of great triumphs and tragedies. Then they turn and point at the lonely, sad faced PC wargamer outside who can never know what it feels like to hold the counters, set up the board, smell the cards and feel the rattle of dice, and rub their victim’s face in the agony of a successful ambush. I want all these things dammit, and it’s maybe not fair to expect this of Heroes, but it does not falter under the weight of my expectation.
Heroes of Stalingrad focuses on small, personal skirmishes encountered during the Battle of Stalingrad. The intimate settings necessitate a good deal of finesse in ordering units and squads around that the tactical player will revel in. The map could be a simple village or an important crossroads or other close quarter environment consisting of three or four infantry sections with some leaders and support teams, sometimes backed by tanks or other AFVs Continuity is provided by the persistence of a core of soldiers. These units gain points by surviving campaign scenarios and destroying enemies, points are reinvested in various improvements such as increased range, strength, or leadership , hardening armour, extra offense opportunities and adding a weapon or special skill.