Monthly Archives: October 2014

Why Shadow of Mordor is a Good Choice for Halloween

Lloyd Sabin, All Hallow’s Eve, 2014

How Do I Look at the World?

I am a seasonal kind of guy. I read books that are indirectly connected to what’s going on outside my window. I listen to music to put me in a weather-appropriate mood. And I game the same way…linking what I play to my perceived notion of whatever season I’m in. I’ve written articles about this before, dating back about 10 years when I wrote a review of one of my favorite PC titles ever: Rome Total War – Barbarian Invasion (BI).

I remember starting my first campaign in that game in the fall, which felt so damned perfect it was palpable. The apocalyptic tension of the barbarian hordes slugging it out across a dynamic map of Europe and Asia blew my mind as the leaves on the trees outside my gaming room yellowed and fell to the ground. As a matter of fact it may have been BI that cemented this seasonal thinking in my brain. It may have started with books and music when I was a teenager, but PC games made it an official way of thinking, or some kind of disorder, as an adult. (Ed note: we’re voting for “disorder”).

Fast forward ten years and I’m still posting threads on what games are best to play in October, to get really juiced and jazzed for Halloween. I still listen to Type-O Negative tracks, the Cure and old U2…of course the album October by the Gaelic music gods is on constant rotation for me this time of year, despite the album being over 30 years old. But what to game?

Yes, the Uruks you encounter are pretty fierce...but there are worse things lurking.

Yes, the Uruks you encounter are pretty fierce…but there are worse things lurking.

The Scramble for Africa – A Civ 5 AAR (Part 14)

Gettin’ scrambly wit’ it…

By Brant Guillory, GrogDude

Click images to enlarge

We made a bunch of new city-state friends and renewed our vows with Maria, but we still have no clue how we’re actually doing in the game.


Bye, Bye Workers
Unlike the French, I get to fire workers when I’m running out of things for them to do, and I’ve got enough workers to continue to improve the land I have left.


Last Cultural Achievement
Not a lot to choose from here, eh?

Tuesday Screenshot – CMSF

28 October 2014

Boggit is out on night maneuvers



Night action – having cleared the way with grenades, my guys go in to mop up what’s left

Night action – having cleared the way with grenades, my guys go in to mop up what’s left

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GrogHeads Reviews Fire in the Lake

Michael Eckenfels, 25 October 2014

Michael gives GMT Games’ latest COIN offering a work-thru


It’s 2014, and when you take stock of history, it’s almost unbelievable how time has marched on. The strangest thing is that our Vietnam War vets are in their 60s and 70s these days, whereas back in the 80s when I was in high school, this was the age range of our World War II vets. As these soldiers fade into history through inexorable tick-tocking of time, it’s good to know that the subject of the Vietnam War remains in the modern psyche, whether through books or companies like GMT producing games such as this.

Games simulating the Vietnam War (and yes, I’ll call it a war – let’s not get into a debate over ‘war’ or ‘police action’ or ‘conflict’ – unless you want to take it to the GH forums, of course) are fairly rare, though if you enter “Vietnam” in the BGG website you’ll get 45 titles, about 12 of which have been done since 2010. This of course doesn’t include games that have to do with Vietnam, but don’t have ‘Vietnam’ in the title – like this very game.

Several are all about tactical combat, though, and few actually try to detail the entire war including combat, politics, and internal struggles between alliances. When you buy Fire in the Lake, you’re going to get a complete package that includes all of this. If you’re only interested in the military aspects of the Vietnam War, you’re going to miss out on some interesting game play. First, let’s take a look at what comes in the box.


GrogHeads Advanced Research on Projects Advisory #56

Brant Guillory, 24 October 2014

Not another GARPA!

War & Seas (Wargame Process Edition)
P500 for $49, or 39€

There’s a definite ‘ooh and ahh’ factor to this one.  It’s an age-of-sail slugfest with a build-your-own-ship twist.  You kit out your ship by the use of mix-and-match blacks that represent cannons, crew, officers, etc. and the blast away.  The combat dice are not normal d6s either; they are multi-symbol faces that apply numbers to the actions you’ve chose.  It’s a small fleet action with built-in multiplayer support, and well, did we mention it looks cool?  Go get a p500 order in now and get this thing made already!