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Gathering of Engineers

Ludographic considerations from the Silicon Forest

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Filling the Holes

It's Chris's turn to quiz us this month, and he asks "What are some games that you wish you owned, but don't? Why do you not own them today?"

I sort of covered this last week in my Christmas list post, but I'll refine things a bit as the focus of the question isn't entirely the same. Last week, I asked "what games do I want for Christmas?" That sort of restricted things to games easily available. This week will be a bit different.

I'll break things up into two groupings: newer (2004, later, or not yet released) games, and older games.

Newer games

First off, let's take a look at the wargames on my list. My taste in wargames is very dependant on the subject. With one primary exception (Panzer Grenadier) I'm usually only interested in WWII games if they're on the Battle of the Bulge or North African theatre. And anything on the Seven Years War (1756-1763) or earlier will grab my eye. I'm also nearly always willing to take a look at fantasy wargames, as there are so few of them that are worth anything.

Wacht Am Rhein II. It's THE monster game on the Battle of the Bulge. Decision Games just released this new version a few months ago. I'll never play it. It's expensive. It's huge. (and the cost is the primary reason why I don't own it.) So why do I want it? Well, it might just be the most detailed simulation of the battle available. Going through parts of this game would not be unlike learning the battle from a military school. Plus, those maps are just gorgeous. However, the game IS playable – unlike other monsters – so I'll probably always hold out hope that I'll someday get the full campaign scenario on the table. I already own what's probably the most playable monster game on the North African campaign (DAK2) so this will create the set.

Crusader Rex. I love Hammer of the Scots. Block wargames are both easy to play and very challenging. Dave and Tim just gave this a run last weekend, and while there were some balance concerns I think this is a good follow-up from Jerry Taylor's HotS. Just haven't pulled the trigger on this one as there's been other priorities. It's on my Christmas list, though, and I'm hoping to be putting the stickers on blocks come the 25th.

7 Ages. I really love the idea of 7 Ages. I like how there's so many different ways to play it. It gets hammered on luck of the draw. However, I just have this nagging feeling that if I let this game go out of print without scoring a copy, I'll regret it.


I'll toss two in here: Mighty Armies (from Mongoose) and Dwarf Wars (from West Wind). The rules for Mighty Armies are pretty lame, but the armies will work great for Hordes of the Things. (the fantasy version of DBA) Same for Dwarf Wars. The figures for Dwarf Wars are the best I've seen for that particular genre, and much cheaper than Games Workshop. The rules probably have the same editing/consistency problems as other games they produce, but they'll work great for Chipco's Fantasy Rules!.


There's a lot here. Most of these haven't been purchased for the following reasons:

  • Not out yet/hard to get in the US
  • Doesn't support two-players, and someone else in the group has a copy
  • haven't gotten around to it
  • some other factor

Caylus – new hotness. See last week's post for the details.
Byzantium – again, new hotness, but this time it's Martin Wallace and a top-shelf theme in my book.
Indonesia – the latest Splotter big game. I love R&B and I need to give Antiquity more tries, but I'm sure I'll be getting this one.
Das Zepter von Zavandor – I'm waiting for the English version of this one.
Neuland – This is one that's been on my "want" list for quite a while, but the lack of US availability has really restricted my desire to get it. There are a handful of online DE shops that carry it, but I just haven't made the effort to figure out how to place the order. I'm probably going to get Indonesia and Neuland at the same time to save on shipping.
Pizza Box Football – Just played this one last weekend. Good fun and definitely something Jodie would be interested in playing. Yeah, it's a dice fest, but that's not always a bad thing.
Elasund – We like Candamir (though it is a tad long) and will definitely be getting this one.

Older Games

Okay, now for the older stuff. There's a couple wargames that I definitely want to get my hands on that are relatively old.

Rommel in the Desert – my favorite WWII theatre gets the block treatment. Some have called this the most playable operational treatment of the North African campaign in existence. They're probably right. I need to get a copy.

Banzai/Desert War. I've got Up Front, but never got the expansions. With the prices they're going for now, however, I don't know that I ever will. Unless, of course, the now-semi-mythical Multiman Press reprint of Up Front includes them. Which it probably won't.

Kolin/Zorndorf/Leuthen/Lobositz. These four are the Seven Years Wars battles in Clash of Arms series "Battles from the Age of Reason" The other (fourth) game in the series is Brandywine & Germantown, and based on those battles from American Revolutionary War. These are probably the most detailed looks at the top battles of the SYW, and receive very good reviews. They're just not very cheap, and my focus on the SYW isn't what it used to be. I'll probably eventually buy used copies of these. The only other major look at these battles in a relatively recently published game is in GMT's Prussia's Glory (which adds Rossbach and Torgau to Leuthen and Zorndorf and PGII has Prague, Kolin, Krefeld, and Kunersdorf) but that's at a much different scale. (1 hex in PG is 500 yards. In the BAR series, 1 hex = 100 yds. Leuthen in PG is one map, in BAR, it's four.)


This is a rather small group, actually. I've got most of the pre-2004 eurogames I want with a couple exceptions.

Euphrat & Tigris. I traded away my copy for Bonaparte at Marengo. I need to replace it.
Ra. I started seriously collecting games right about the time this went out of print. Now that it's back, I definitely need to snag a copy.
Capitol. Jodie and I looked at this one a couple times, but never managed to get it added to an order.
Fearsome Floors. I've somehow managed to not pick this one up yet, but I'll have to change that. Friedemann Friese is turning into one of my more favorite designers.


  • At 3:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    So does that mean that KC's copy of Ra and Euphrat & Tigris are now spoken for?

  • At 3:23 PM, Blogger Jeff Coon said…

    eBay is a great place to find Capitol for a very reasonable price. I found my copy for $28 + shipping, which I thought was reasonable. I think there is an exiting listing for another one.

  • At 11:46 AM, Blogger Eric said…

    Nope, I haven't (IIRC) reserved KC's copy of either of those games. I'll have to dig out my email to check and see what I actually requested from KC.

    Jeff: thanks for the eBay pointer. I'll probably be waiting until after Xmas to start seriously looking, though - have to spend on other people first!


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