Games Mentioned

The following games have been mentioned in the blog.  I will update this page as I introduce new games.  I will not comment on if a game is enjoyable or not, each has some aspect of it to teach in playing games.

Style: Non-Symmetric, Card Management, Deck Building
Era: None/Abstract
End Condition: Victory Point,
ZOC Type: None
Logistics: Some
Description:  Dominion is not a war game, it is a card game.  It introduces some aspects of logistics and statistics by requiring players to build their deck on the fly, using cards to purchase other cards.  These purchased cards, in turn, permit certain effects which modify the game.

Here I Stand
Style: Non-Symmetric
Era: 16th Century Europe, Historical
End Condition: Victory Point, Timed
ZOC Type: None/Special
Logistics: None
Description:  Here I Stand covers the wars of the reformation.  It is not a 'typical' war game in not everyone's goal is to 'defeat' the enemy.  Elements of war are present in the players have leaders, units, and they move along the hex board or across oceans.  However, each player also has a unique set of concerns to deal with.  Ottomans can achieve VP through piracy, the Papacy needs to keep the Protestant Reformation from spreading, Protestants want to spread the Reformation, and three of the powers can expand, explore and conquer the New World.  Overall, the game is an incredible mixture of historical events.  This unique game merges politics and warfare to a level rarely seen.

Perhaps the major drawback is the time it takes to learn the game, the number of people needed to make the game truly enjoyable, and the number of times needed to play the game to truly grasp the various strategies.  On the other hand, learning this game teaches history, politics, and strategy on a level I've rarely seen. 

Railroad Tycoon  (aka Rails of the World)

Style: Economic
Era: Golden Age of Railroads
End Condition: Cities are depleted, Victory Points
ZOC Type: None
Logistics: None
Description:  Railroad is not a typical war game.  It is an economic game where players must sell shares to build railroads, build railroads to ship goods, ship goods to make money and score points.  Although there is no direct player conflict, in fact players may use each other's rail lines (for a cost), it contains many war game elements.

Red Storm Rising

Style: Objective/Timed
Era: Modern (Fictional NATO vs Warsaw PACT)
End Condition: Pact must obtain objective cities in limited time
ZOC Type: None
Logistics: None
Description:  Red Storm Rising depicts a non-nuclear WWIII in Germany.  Loosely based on the book by the same name, I like to describe it as "The best simulation of how NATO would win against PACT forces".  The game is heavily biased against PACT nations and I have never seen PACT win.  At times it looks like they are close, but lose in the end.  Mostly this is due to nigh invincible NATO air force units.  It also leans towards "Idiocy Play", a term I plan to cover in a future article.

Style: Take over the world
Era: ???
End Condition: Everyone concedes victory or is eliminated
ZOC Type: None
Logistics: None
Description:  It is Risk, the classic game.  Note, classic doesn't necessarily mean good, just it has been around for decades and nearly everyone knows the game.  Overall, Risk has little to offer in terms of decision making, strategy, or planning.  However, it is simple enough for young children to play, and is a great way to begin introducing them to games.  Many people mention "Risk" when I first tell them I play board games.  I do not consider this an insult, as it provides a start to the conversation and a basis for them to work from in introducing more interesting games.

Russian Front
Style: Objective/Timed
Era: World War II
End Condition: Varies based on scenario.
ZOC Type: Interrupting
Logistics: Supply
Description:  Russian Front attempts to simulate the German-Russian front during World War II.  It takes a unique approach to determining game ending, supply and zone of control.  The ZOC rules of "ZOC lost when engaged in battle" adds a unique element to play and changes the play style dramatically.  The game also stresses the importance of rail lines to continental powers, an element not normally mentioned in most games.

Another interesting item of Russian Front is most scenarios have a "Timed-Objective" combination.  As an example, the German player must capture a certain number of Russian Factory by a certain time period.  If the objective is met, the game ends.  If not, the game continues, but the number of factories required changes as the months pass.

Style: Irregular board war game/production Game
Era: Medieval Japanese
End Condition: Victory Point Limit Reached
ZOC Type: None
Logistics: None
Description:  Senji is a difficult game to describe in relation to other games.  At its heart is a war game where player's vie for control over territories on the board.  However, to achieve success the players must negotiate with each other and trade cards representing "military support", "trade ships", and "hostages".  Interestingly, the three types of cards a player has of 'their color' provides the player no benefit.  It is only through trading for other's cards is a benefit achieved.  For example, your military support card has no value to you in combat, but if you had another player's military card it could bring that player's forces in to support your attacks.  Similarly with the trade ships and hostages.

Overall there are two main paths to victory in Senji: Military Occupation or Production.  Unlike most games, a successful player must engage in some degree of both paths to be victorious, although the amount varies based on individual play style.  Lastly, a player must negotiate with others to achieve success.  However, this can lead to back stabbing and treachery on a wide scale quite quickly.  Senji is a fun game and one I recommend, but it is time consuming.  Experienced players have a definite advantage over first time players.

Tac Air
Style: Timed
Era: Modern (Fictional NATO vs Warsaw PACT)
End Condition: Scoring/Objective
ZOC Type: Active, Interrupting, Interdicting
Logistics: Command and Supply
Description:  Tac Air simulates a World War III from the 1980s.  Basically, NATO vs the Warsaw Pact.  the game has ground elements in the war, but it is designed to instruct the use of Tactical Airpower in a modern combat situation.  At first glance, the game appears to be balanced towards NATO forces (more air power, and stronger ground units than PACT forces), but in the hands of a skilled PACT commander it can be a challenge for both sides.

Tac Air is a remake of FEBA (Forward Edge of the Battle Area), which was so unbalanced towards NATO as to not be a game.  The complexity level can vary from simple to extreme, but any version will take some time. 

Style: Production, Unit by Unit
Era: None
End Condition: Capture the opponent's bases.
ZOC Type: Interrupting
Logistics: None
Description:  Weewar is a multi-player web-based game.  Players build units and then send those units into combat against the enemy with the goal of capturing all the enemy bases (cities, harbors, airports) and destroying all opposing units.  Weewar is a great tool for learning to think strategically.  Maps provide different objectives and at
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