Although I have “appeared” a few times on the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast at the Armchair Dragoons the past few seasons this past week was the first time I “appeared” on Kev’s Big Board Gaming Channel. As in I literally “appeared” on a live stream. Kev is a great host and it was a good time. I’m not sure what sort of impression I’m making on people as I’m just out to convey my love for the hobby. If you have a chance please drop by and take 45 minutes to watch and hopefully get some inspiration to play something.
My next “Reading to Wargame” series started with my comments on Antony Beevor’s The Battle of Arnhem book. Check back next week to see how it influenced my play of Mark Simonitch’s Holland ’44: Operation Market-Garden from GMT Games.
This was a good week for wargame arrivals. Three new titles are in the RockyMountainNavy house and in various at various stages of learning:
- Kido Butai: Japan’s Carriers at Midway (DRK, 2016) is a solo game on the Battle of Midway focused exclusively on Japanese aircraft carrier operations. I may submit my thoughts to Brant at Armchair Dragoons since it could compliment an earlier article I wrote for the site on another Midway wargame, Fury at Midway (Revolution Games, 2020).
- Fifth Corps: The Soviet Breakthrough at Fulda (Central Front Series, Vol. 1), Strategy & Tactics nr. 82 (Sept/Oct 1980) from SPI and Jim Dunnigan. Many Cold War games I have, from Bruce Maxwell’s NATO: The Next War in Europe (Victory Games, 1983 – Now up for reprint at Compass Games albeit with a slightly different name) to Fabrizio Vianello’s Less Than 60 Miles (Thin Red Line Games, 2019) to Carl Fung’s Iron Curtain: Central Europe, 1945-1989 (MMP, 2020) all reference in some way Dunnigan’s classic game. It’s past time I study this masterpiece myself.
- Advanced Squad Leader Starter Kit #1 (Multi-Man Publishing, 2004): I own the designer John Hill’s original Squad Leader (Avalon Hill, 1977) and I remember one time playing a copy of a friends Cross of Iron (Avalon Hill, 1978) and Crescendo of Doom (Avalon Hill, 1979), both Squad Leader gamette’s, but I never played Advanced Squad Leader in either the Avalon Hill or Multi-Man Publishing editions. Now that changes.
As I was waiting for the new titles to arrive I used a random number generator to select a game from my collection to play. Thus, Mississippi Banzai (XTR Corp, 1990) landed on the gaming table. This “alternate history” game envisions a Stalingrad-like offensive around St Louis in a 1948 as Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany face off in a conquered United States. More thoughts forthcoming soon.
My Kickstarter copy of Supercharged by Jim Dietz is on the mail. I’m looking forward to getting it in ouse this week and not-so-secretly hope the RockyMountainNavy Boys and myself get it to the table in a renewed weekend Game Night.
With North Korea making news this week I hope you all have read my comments on Daniel Bullock’s No Motherland Without: North Korea in Crisis and Cold War (Compass Games, 2021) that was published by the Armchair Dragoons. I think the whole world is wondering which Missile Test Event Card Kim Jong Un might play next.
With the arrival of Kido Butai in the house I looked at my Midway collection of books. Not wanting to rehash my read of the 2005 Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway by Jonathan Parshall and Anthony Tully I instead picked up Dallas Woodbury Isom’s Midway Inquest: Why the Japanese Lost the Battle of Midway also from 2007. Written in some ways as a counter to Shattered Sword, I ended up focusing on Appendix D which is the “rules” for a “war game” Isom uses in Chapter 10 of his book. Thoughts forthcoming.