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Category Archives: Whatever

A Look at the Playthrough Gaming Convention

We sortied out to the local game convention for a load of photos, and more ~

Brant Guillory, 26 February 2017Playthrough-Logo

Raleigh, NC has a pretty thriving game community – 2 local colleges have digital game design programs, there are at least 4 pretty active game clubs, and all three major game stores are packed most nights for any combination of D&D Encounters, minis warfare, Friday Night .\\agic, or general board gaming.  The Triangle Simulation Society runs 2 minis-focused conventions each year, but this year the Playthrough Gaming Convention took over one of the exhibit halls at the Raleigh Convention for a weekend of digital, tabletop, and live-action gaming, as well as seminars, tournaments, and a costume contest.

Looking over the gaming hall. Booths in the front, video games on the right, and tabletops in the back.

Looking over the gaming hall. Booths in the front, video games on the right, and tabletops in the back.

2016 Readers’ Choice Award Winners

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The nominations came in throughout 2016.  After our annual January voting, we bring your the Readers’ Choice Award Winners for game-year 2016 ~

Gold Medals!

Congrats to our winners!
OVERALL TABLETOP GAME – Star Wars: Rebellion
OVERALL DIGITAL GAME – Twilight Struggle, digital edition

Digital Wargame – Twilight Struggle, digital edition
Digital RTS – Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak
Digital RPG – Uncharted 4
Digital FPS – Battlefield 1
Digital Family / Sports Game – FIFA 17
Digital 4X Game- Civilization 6
Digital Expansion / DLC – Order of Battle: US Marines
Tabletop Wargame – Wing Leader: Supremacy
Tabletop Strategy Game – Star Wars: Rebellion
Tabletop RPG – Star Wars: Force Awakens
Tabletop Euro / Family Game – Terraforming Mars
Tabletop Reprint – Silver Bayonet 25th Ed
AAR of the Year – War in the Pacific AE – KyzBP & UCG

At GrogHeads, we give our readers the final say on the best games of the year, and here are the 2016 Readers’ Choice Awards…

We try to be as responsive as we can to our readers, and include every nomination, checking only for only one criteria: released in the correct year.  We open the threads at the start of the year (2017 threads are already open!) and leave them up even into the first week of the next year.  Somehow, even with an entire year to nominate games, we still get hate-mail from around the web asking “why wasn’t _____ on the list?”  The answer is the same every time: no one nominated it!  It’s your award, and you dear reader, get to pick your own choices.

This year’s winners?  Here they go.  And remember, all of them were selected by you!

GrogHeads Readers’ Choice Overall 2016 Tabletop Game of the Year was Star Wars: Rebellion, a game we discussed at length on the GrogCast last fall.  Falling Sky, the latest in the COIN series, finished second.  Ventonuovo’s visually stunning Moscow ’41 took third.

The GrogHeads Readers’ Choice Overall 2016 Digital Game of the Year was the adaptation of the excellent Twilight Struggle tabletop game.  Second place was claimed by Strategic Command: WWII in Europe, and third overall was XCom 2.

In response to reader inquiries, we also added a new feature this year to recognize excellent After-Action Reports from games.  Although we did not limit the category to those AARs that appeared on our site, it’s interesting to note that all three of the top finishers were in our forums, rather than on our front page, indicating that we clearly have to some talented writers in our forums.  The overall winner of the inaugural AAR of the Year for 2016 was  War in the Pacific AE, authored by KyzBP & Undercovergeek in the GrogHeads forums.

2017 Convention Calendar

Your local convention…  and plenty of national ones! ~

GrogHeads Staff, 25 January 2017

A few of these have already passed…  sorry – we were trying to get the later-in-the-year dates together, but some of them have yet to be announced.  We’ll update this all year long, so keep it bookmarked for reference!

If we missed your favorite – leave us a comment with the link at the bottom, and we’ll get it added.

Siege of Augusta
13-15 January, Augusta, GA

Winter Offensive
12-15  January, Bowie, MD
MMP’s key ‘local’ convention full of all things ASL, other MMP games, and late-night Eurogaming.

Game On!
9-12 Feb, Seattle, WA
An ASL tournament, along with the Hank Award and all sorts of hex-and-counter goodness.

2016 Readers’ Choice Award Voting

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Have your say about your favorite 2016 games ~

GrogHeads Staff, 18 January 2017

It’s time to get your votes in for the Readers’ Choice Awards for game-year 2016.

The only required items are the overall digital / tabletop games, at the end of each of those categories.

This year we’ve made a few changes:

  • We’ve consolidated the overall number of categories within the tabletop/digital divisions, to try to keep them as consistent as possible year-to-year
  • We’ve added an “AAR of the Year” category, at the request of the readers and members of our forums
  • We received no nominations for miniatures rules/expansions, so we’re not doing away with them as a category, but we can’t give you what you don’t nominate!

Chat about it below, or in our forums, or hit our FaceBook page >>

TANKSgiving! – The British Tank Museum

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Airboy made a trip to England and all we got were these lousy AWESOME! pictures ~

Avery Abernethy, 23 November 2016

click images to enlarge

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Mark I (Male)

 

Modern-Day Napoleonic Battles & Travels, Part the Second

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Cyrano’s next entry to the travelogue ~

Jim Owczarski, 05 November 2016

One of the great joys of travel is discovering something you never thought to find.  This is particularly true for me if it’s something that runs the risk of being lost to time or cultural preference.  A good example is the small memorial sign atop the Stare Vinohrady (Old Vineyard) at Austerlitz.  For all the effort that went into making the battlefield ready for the 200th anniversary back in 2005, it seems no one bothered to put up something more permanent than a simple metal sign, painted white-on-blue, and mounted on two stakes at the site of one of the greatest cavalry charges in history.

Admittedly, depending on how one gets up there, the route to the top of the Stare Vinohrady can be quite the hike and, based on the fair number of beer bottles and cigarette butts in evidence, it seems a popular location for late night fire pits and drink-a-thons.  Still, not long after I laid eyes on the sign — and worked my way through a rough translation of its Czech inscription — I was determined at least to leave it standing and its restoration, however brief, is something I will always remember.

There, better!

There, better!

Convention Report – Buckeye Game Fest 2016

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What happens when gamers get together and just, y’know play games?! ~

Gary Mengle, 01 October 2016

From September 5-12 wargamers, local and from far away, gathered in Columbus, Ohio for the annual War Room. The War Room is an event that runs in parallel with the Buckeye Game Fest, a show that draws hundreds of gamers from around the region and put on by the Columbus Area Board Gaming Society — the same group that hosts the Board Room at Origins, and which boasts massive attendance at its weekly meetings. Euro games, card games, rail games and racing games — you name it, they’re all on display at Buckeye Game Fest. But the War Room is for wargamers, and we get an extra three days to partake.

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Tracer Rounds: The Best Damn Songwriting You Never Appreciated

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Can we finally give Guns ‘n Roses their due ~

Brant, 19 September 2016

Things have been a little too heavy lately, and we need to talk about something completely different…  So can we just take a step back and spend a few minutes admiring what totally bad-ass, criminally-under-rated, and never-appreciated songwriters the guys from Guns’n Roses were?  Sure, we all know the ‘hits’ – Welcome to the Jungle, November Rain, Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door, You Could Be Mine, and Sweet Child o’ Mine – and the ‘scandal’ songs like Used to Love Her, or It’s So Easy.  But once you get beyond the radio tunes (or heck, even with the radio tunes) the quality of songwriting you get from the band so far exceeds their contemporaries that they’re not even in the same galaxy.tr-gnr

Back in the late-80s, the popular talk was comparing GnR to The Rolling Stones, under the premise that supposedly no other band had conquered the rock and roll world on their own terms to the degree that GnR did.  That was typical rock journalist hyperbole, of course.  But honestly, the depth of songwriting, quality of musicianship, and production was blowing most other acts at the time out of the water – even GnR’s supposed contemporaries.  Motley Crue didn’t figure out how to write a song until their 4th album; Poison never quite did.  Ratt’s riffs were impeccable, but aside from the one-off lyrical curiosity like Wanted Man, they didn’t keep up.  Great White?  Slaughter?  Bulletboys?  XYZ?  Rough Cutt?  Firehouse?  Please.  Don’t embarrass yourself suggesting them.