I am quite happy to see Fort Circle Games add Hunt for Blackbeard by Volko Ruhnke to their catalog of games. But I’m also confused. In an effort to avoid those dreaded Metropolitan Elite wargamers and their fatalistic love affair with Ameritrash I’m supposed to be on the lookout for titles that lean into the “scientification” of wargames. One sure-fire sign of that condition is a game that calls itself a “simulation.” So what am I supposed to think about Hunt for Blackbeard: A Simulation of the True Events of 1718? Maybe it’s a boardgame and not a wargame which makes it ok? Well, at least Kevin has promised the typical “Fort Circle treatment” so the game will almost certainly have the proper, anti-metropolitan elite wargamer aesthetic!
Another recently announced game that also baffles me a bit is General Orders: World War II designed by David Thompson and Trevor Benjamin and being published by Osprey Games. In addition to the incredible designers behind the game, what also caught my attention was the ad copy which proclaims that General Orders is a “worker-placement wargame.” If you go the March 15 announcement on the Osprey pages this claim greets you:
“Take command of Axis and Allied troops at the height of World War II in the first ever
worker-placement wargame, brought to you by the designers of the Undaunted series.”
The first ever worker-placement wargame? But I’ve been told countless, COUNTLESS times that U-BOOT: The Board Game (Phalanx, 2019) is a wargame. After all, it won the 2019 Charles S. Roberts Award for Best World War 2 Wargame, yes? Is worker-placement not a major game mechanism used in U-BOOT? So how can General Orders be the “first ever worker-placement wargame” if U-BOOT, an “award winning wargame” that uses worker-placement, is already published?
Let me be clear on this: I am looking forward to both of these games whether they are called wargames or not. But right now there are some out there who are shaking their head and calling me just another part of the Armchair Dragoons crew that lacks progress.
Maybe they can’t recognize sarcasm but honestly I’m trying to listen…the message I’m reading just isn’t that clear.
Feature image “A Life magazine photographer aboard the doomed Zam Zam snapped this image of the German surface raider Atlantis posing as the Norwegian merchant ship Tamesis. The photograph eventually reached the British Admiralty and was distributed to Royal Navy forces hunting the German vessel.” Courtesy warfarehistorynetwork.com.
RockyMountainNavy.com © 2007-2023 by Ian B is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
2 thoughts on “Wargame SITREP 230317 N4 Supply – But that’s a wargame!”
I hadn’t heard the Blackbeard game was going to Fort Circle. I backed it when it was with GMT and can’t wait to see it.
what’s funny is the whole…
“just another part of the Armchair Dragoons crew that lacks progress”
when we’re the ones that were helping to promote the COIN games, Shores of Tripoli, Stonewall Uprising, both SLAR games, Votes for Women, etc etc
All of which have been a part of our wargaming area at Origins over the years. Hell, we even had a Twilight Struggle tournament one year!