AARsday – Airship Dragoon – The Battle of Verdun, Part 1

Sauron’s recent escapades in Airship Dragoon included a shootout near Verdun between the Brits and More »

Valiant Hearts: The Great War reviewed

A review by Lloyd Sabin, 20 July 2014 Published by Ubisoft Montpellier As always, click images More »

GARPA 49 – GrogHeads Advanced Research on Projects Advisory

GARPA lands with three not-yet-funded projects that all look tres cool, and one that did make the More »

A Distant Worlds AAR – Part 1

By Brandon “Kushan” Johnson, July 17, 2014 Welcome all. I’ve been playing Distant Worlds (DW) More »

GrogHeads Reviews World at War: Blood & Bridges

World at War: Blood and Bridges, Published by Lock ‘n Load Publishing Review by Michael Eckenfels, 13 July More »

 

Review of Paper Sorceror

Review by Avery Abernethy,  25 July 2014

                Paper Sorcerer is a turn-based, small party, role-playing game.  Released by Runaway Games after a successful Kickstarter proposal, Paper Sorcerer harkens back to the early days of RPGs such as the early Wizardry, Ultima, and Gold Box D&D dungeons like Pool of Radiance or Eye of the Beholder.  This review is based on my completion of the game after approximately eighteen hours of play on a newish Falcon Northwest personal computer.  My copy of Paper Sorcerer was purchased from www.gog.com on sale for $3.99.  The download was fast and the installation was smooth.

Paper Sorcerer has one of the most creative background stories that I have encountered.  Your main character is an evil sorcerer who has been banished into a book by a party of four good characters.  The book is your prison.  It is also the prison of a host of other evil types.  But a limited number of “good” heroes have also entered the book to keep all of the bad guys from magically breaking the bindings of the book and earning freedom in an unsuspecting world.  The background story is largely told in a short animated sequence at the start of the game and reinforced with minimal background information learned as you explore the dungeon.

AARsday – Airship Dragoon – The Battle of Verdun, Part 1

Verdun-SPLASH

Sauron’s recent escapades in Airship Dragoon included a shootout near Verdun between the Brits and an unspecified “Asian” force.

I have the feeling it will be bloody!!!

I have the feeling it will be bloody!!!

Wargaming History – A Look Into The Past

University of Maryland Professor (and more importantly, wargamer!) Matt Kirschenbaum is on a European odyssey this summer.  While in Switzerland for an academic conference, he made time to swing by a local museum and found an excellent display of wargaming history.

 

MK-MuseumPhotos0000

I was recently in Lausanne, Switzerland for a conference and, well, it rained the entire week. Looking around for something to do I noticed the Swiss Games Musuem, Le Musee Suisse du Jeu, was a short train ride away in the nearby town of La Tour de Pielz. Reading further, I discovered the museum was housed in a castle. A games museum in a castle? Let’s go! Upon arrival, I found two unexpected bonuses: first, the weather briefly cleared, *and* there was a special exhibition of WWI games on!

MK-MuseumPhotos28

Tuesday Screenshot – Picket Duty

We’ve shown you the unboxing on Picket Duty, and we’ve got a review coming up.  But for today, here’s a tease of the game on the table.

click to enlarge

PicketDuty

Photo: Michael Eckenfels

Share your screenshots here >>

Valiant Hearts: The Great War reviewed

VH-SPLASH

A review by Lloyd Sabin, 20 July 2014

Published by Ubisoft Montpellier

As always, click images to enlarge

Emotions and War

I don’t typically wear my emotions on my sleeve. In the last 20 years I think I have shed tears three times in front of my own wife. But there are certain events and historical phenomenon that bring out the sensitive, skinny-jean-and-mesh-truck-cap wearing emo in me…and World War I is at that top of the list.

Why, specifically? I don’t know. Maybe I view World War I through too romantic a lens and I believe so much of what has been written about it: “lions led by donkeys,” the “death of innocence” and “good bye to all that.” Those terms and the emotions, places, and situations they describe really resonate with me in a way that no other historical era does.

Zeppelins are portrayed in Valiant Hearts and you'll have to learn how to take them down!

Zeppelins are portrayed in Valiant Hearts and you’ll have to learn how to take them down!

It’s strange because I had direct contact with World War II through my grandparents: its horrors and its triumphs – so much so that World War II became almost commonplace to me. Where and when I grew up, everyone had a father, or more likely a grandfather, who fought in it. World War I is murkier; I have never knowingly met anyone who was there, so I have constructed what it was like for combatants on all sides in my own head. And this has produced a war where vengeance and justice have been replaced with melancholy and the longing for “the way things were before.” By World War II the world collectively knew that there was no going back; during World War I this loss was still very new and very fresh. This hazy, general feeling of loss and grief is captured masterfully by Valiant Hearts: The Great War (VH:TGW).

Paris at night, before the Battle of the Marne.

Paris at night, before the Battle of the Marne.

GARPA 49 – GrogHeads Advanced Research on Projects Advisory

01-GARPA

GARPA lands with three not-yet-funded projects that all look tres cool, and one that did make the cut that looks overwhelmingly cool.

Battle of the Electric Vikings (Black Slither Games)
$2400 of $4700, ends 6 August 2014

Rock out with your c…  well, you know the rest.  Black Slither Games gives everyone a chance to be their own heavy metal poet by piecing together your own song titles, lyrics, and albums from a bag of word tiles with the most metal of meaningful choices.  Who cares if you win?  It only matters if you ROCK!  And that you pledge over at the Kickstarter page.  That’s important, too.

G49-Viking

A Distant Worlds AAR – Part 1

DW AAR-SPLASH

By Brandon “Kushan” Johnson, July 17, 2014

Welcome all. I’ve been playing Distant Worlds (DW) since it was first released in 2010. Since then, it’s become my favorite 4x game of any genre. No other game, except the Paradox games, come close to the breadth of options and replayability of DW, in my humble opinion of course.

 Click images to enlarge

DW Part 01 - 01

 

I’m going to be changing up my normal DW playstyle this time around. I normally fully control everything, and I’ve restarted a dozen different times trying to find a level of automation I can deal with. I’ve created a custom theme (mod) for this playthrough. I started with Haree78’s DW Extended Mod and merged in several other mods I thought would add a bit more variety.

Articles From The Archives: Dust

Great chips-and-soda game that is familiar in gameplay, but with just enough added complexity to keep players engaged throughout the game. Combat is nuanced but still fast-flowing, and players have to make serious strategic choices at every turn.

Review by Brant Guillory, about 7 years ago :)

This review originally appeared in Scrye Magazine

Number of players: 2-6
Designed for ages: 12 and up
Learning Curve: Low to Medium
Playing time: 1-3 hours
Pros: Visually grand; familiar mechanics; lots of choices for players
Cons: Backstory irrelevant to gameplay; some game effects not clearly explained

Dust, Fantasy Flight’s new “big box” game, is based on the comics of the same name, in which history was altered by the discovery of alien technology on a polar expedition early in WWII. You now know more than you need to know about the backstory of the game in order to play it. But don’t let that get you down, because Dust is a great game, regardless of the story behind it.

Players are trying to gain victory points by controlling power sources, conquering their opponents, and dominating certain numbers on the map. They do so by marshalling their armies, and balancing the manufacture of forces with the usage of them.