GrogCast Season 6 Episode 13 – The Kriegspielers

GrogCast Season 6 Episode 13 – The Kriegspielers
The GrogCast

00:00 / 1:13:58
frontier wars 728x90 KS

18 May 2018 ~

So for the past, well…  forever, we’ve had a forum-based Kriegspiel for the battle of Jena-Auerstedt being run in our forums.  The battle is now over and the AARs are trickling out to our site.  But we wanted to bring in some of the participants to talk about the actual conduct of the game, including how they joined the fray, what they thought of the format, and what they learned from wargaming in an information-constricted environment.

The cast of characters includes Jim O as The Kriegmeister, Dr S as the French delegate, Vance as the Prussian Taskmaster, and Chris as The Guy Who Showed Up Late™.

And yes, we’re still shamelessly begging for some ratings on iTunes, in our quest to get enough ratings to show up on their podcast recommendations.


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2 Responses to GrogCast Season 6 Episode 13 – The Kriegspielers

  1. Lance McMillan says:

    A few random thoughts and musings from the viewpoint of one of the French players (Murat, commanding the Cavalry Reserve) from this game. This was my fourth game using the “Vol de l’Aigle” system, and I’ll echo the strongly positive comments of the subjects in this interview. This was a total gas to play, even though I rarely had a solid sense of what was going on.

    One of my biggest questions would have been how much of the “fog-of-war” imposed by the dispatches was intentionally imposed by the moderator and how much was the result of the various players not communicating effectively/sufficiently. I made a point of sending out updates to my fellow French players on the left wing every 12 hours of game time at a minimum, and more often if the situation warranted — but in some cases I only got a couple communiques from them. Was this because the other players simply weren’t sending messages, or was it because the game system caused the dispatch riders to get lost or intercepted? I never knew (and regardless of which, it definitely created a great period “feel”).

    Similarly, the comment made during the interview (at ~0:36m) about the 14+ hour delay in messages being sent to me was entirely expected — I knew as I was heading off on my long “left hook” that this was likely to occur — what wasn’t anticipated was the fact that my fellow commanders basically seemed to have stopped sending me anything at all. Seriously, once my column reached Wiesensee I think I got a total of two more dispatches for the remainder of the game — exiled to Mars indeed!

    Perhaps the only negative aspect to the game system I found was that the battle reports are so vague as to be nearly meaningless. This struck me as strange since the player’s “character” would, in many cases, actually have been physically present on the field and been able to see at least some of the action going on in front of him. This struck me as both strange and a bit questionable from a realism standpoint. Vance’s comments about his confusion regarding the engagement at Erfurt are a case in point. I can accept/understand a large degree of this confusion, but the depth and duration of it struck me as wrong.

    In conclusion, I had a great time and would absolutely love to do it again. If I may, I’d like to put in a request for the 1809 (Wagram) campaign, with the caveat that if you do that one I’ll try to get my friend Jack Gill (author of ‘Thunder on the Danube’) to sign up as a player as well.

    • Jim Owczarski says:

      Your comments re: battle results are excellent and well-taken. I will push combat reports towards greater detail in future. I always feel the heavy hand of RBS and Phil Barker on my shoulder in the original DBA revolution where they argued generals just wouldn’t have known what many systems let them. I am also not persuaded that presence in the field would necessarily have clarified matters a great deal, but, on balance, as I say, I think you have a point and will adjust.

      Good, good, the guy who wrote the normative book on the subject…no pressure :).

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