Fleet Commander Nimitz – First Look!
A look inside DVG’s new solo Pacific Theater game
Michael Eckenfels, 26 December 2014
I am a board game addict. Card games, dice games, board-and-cool-bits games, name it and I’m all over it if I like the theme. I’ve also done some manuals for board games. What I’m trying to get at is, I’ve seen a lot and played a lot, and it’s really tough to impress me. With unboxing, that first impression is all important; even though I have yet to play Fleet Commander Nimitz, this unboxing was a glorious experience with only a few ‘huh?’ moments.
Fleet Commander Nimitz is a DVG game born from a Kickstarter campaign that ended up cultivating 50% more cash than the goal needed, and as such there were a couple of stretch goals reached – namely, a mounted Battle Board and a counter tray. When I opened the shipping box and took out its contents, this stack is what greeted me:
As far as I can tell, the mounted Battle Board and the counter tray are not included in the game itself, and you cannot get them unless you preordered the game. The DVG page does not indicate that either are included, at least not at this time. Perhaps there will be a ‘Deluxe’ version of FC: Nimitz in the future? Who knows…
The counter tray is pretty nice, but it’s almost laughable insofar as its capacity is, compared to the insane number of counters that come with this game. I know at least one GH forum member that went to Walmart to buy his own storage containers from the crafts section, and that’s something I will likely need to do. Another important question that you might be thinking: will it all fit back in the box? I will answer that shortly.
Looks like a Campaign Log, much like the one that came with Field Commander: Rommel (see my previous review of that title). Without reading the rules I assume this is for the player to keep track of their games and the results. A nice touch if you want to be that detailed in your gaming.
The Battle Board that, I think, normally comes with the game is not mounted, but it’s the same high quality full-color print. It’s on what feels like cardstock, but relatively sturdy. The only thing that worries me about this is constantly folding/unfolding it might form a white crease from wear.
There are four Campaigns in the game – 1942, 1943, 1944, and (you guessed it!) 1945. Each have a detailed set-up to help players get started quickly, it seems. I can’t wait to put it into practice and see for myself.
Uh-oh…counter issues. Seems that DVG did an excellent job of cutting their counters…almost too excellent, because during shipping many of the counters fell out of their sheets. At first I only saw this sheet on top; it reminded me of a similar thing that happened to me when I unboxed Field Commander: Rommel. A few errant counters falling out of sheets is annoying, but not Earth-shattering.
I took all counter sheets out (as well as remaining content), and upended the box to pile up the counters. A satisfactory experience just from seeing a huge pile of counters, but at the same time, my sense of order has been messed with, and I gotta wonder if all the counters are present. This is unusual, but then again this isn’t DVG’s fault. There’s a lot of counters in this game, and shipping can be less than gentle, as gamers no doubt know.
That’s it for the parts…now to get this monster organized. There are eight – count ‘em, eight – counter sheets!
Two hours in and I’ve barely made a dent. Though, in my defense, I was preparing dinner for my two kids during this time so it wasn’t all spent meticulously organizing. The entire time I was doing this I was casting glances at that counter tray…no way this was all going to fit in there.
Finally, over three hours later…and as you can see, the counter tray doesn’t come close to holding everything. Kind of a drag, but not that big a deal; I will go out and find some storage trays and use them (and this included one) to store the game, though that means its storage footprint is going to be larger.
In answer to the age old question, “will it all fit back in the box” – the answer is, yes. At least, for now. Note that I added three sandwich bags to store the counters that could not fit into the provided tray. If you purchase this game from this point forward, consider a trip to a craft section to get your own storage trays, or be prepared to use a lot of baggies.
All in all, Fleet Commander: Nimitz is a spectacular-looking game. The production quality is high, something I now expect every time from DVG. Despite the counters being loose in the box, none were damaged or torn (and as I separated counters that did not fall out initially, only one counter had a bit of backing come off when it would not let go of the counter sheet – but this was easily fixed with a bit of glue. Not bad, one counter out of an estimated billion or so), which should indicate the high quality and thickness of the components.
I will be writing up a full review of this game, so keep an eye on the front page of GrogHeads!