#SundaySummary – Stuffed #Thanksgiving and seeing red on #BlackFriday with @Alderac @trevormbenjamin @djackthompson @Zmangames_ @gmtgames @LnLPub @HuzzahHobbies @hollandspiele @PieceKeeperGame #wargame #boardgame

As previously warned about, not much gaming due to limited time and space. Then again, this is the time of the year I gladly give up game time on the family dining table for festive meals prepared by Mrs. RockyMountainNavy!


Winter Wargaming Series

The RockyMountainNavy War Chest Winter Wargaming Series continued this weekend with me facing off against RockyMountainNavy T again. War Chest, by Trevor Benjamin and David Thompson (AEG, 2018) has become a go-to game for RMN T and myself to fill in the after-dinner time before watching sports or a movie. We use the draft system to pick our forces and this week was another interesting match-up:

  • RMN T – Marshal, Berserkers, Footmen, Crossbowmen
  • RMN – Royal Guards, Warrior Priests, Lancers, Archers

This was a hard-fought battle that lasted a full hour of play. I ended the game with just two coins in my bag but controlled five of my six needed areas before my last unit was killed. This game once again saw RMN T use the Marshal to order forces from a distance. We also had lots of change-of-initiative as we both leaned hard into using that rule to give ourselves back-to-back turns. For myself I think I used the Royal Guards more wisely than I have before. RMN T is now ahead 2-1 in our War Chest Winter Gaming Series with many more match-ups to surely come!

With RockyMountainNavy Jr. home for the holiday the Boys and myself got a play of Star Wars: The Clone Wars (Z-Man Games, 2022) in on Thanksgiving Night. We played on Padawan-level (3 missions) since it was RMN Jr.’s first play but we will play at least at Jedi Knight-level (4 missions) in the future because we never felt pressured. It also helped that RMN Jr. built a squad right from the beginning that was highly suited to the two at-start missions shown…

Holiday Sales/Black Friday/Small Business Saturday

I was (barely) able to take advantage of the GMT Games Holiday Sale. Was a bit difficult given I was on the other side of the world at the time. Next War: Vietnam by designer Mitchell Land should be inbound shortly. I also ordered a copy of Brandywine: Battles of the American Revolution Vol. II (designer Mark Miklos, 2000) only to later remember it is one of the games in the Tri-Pack Battles of the American Revolution (2017) that I already own! Ah…the challenges of managing your collection on the other side of the globe on a BGG app using spotty wi-fi…

Not Vietnam but another both a past and “Next War” candidate (photo by RMN)

I also took advantage of a sale at Flying Pig Games. Old School Tactical Volume II : West Front 1944-45 will hopefully arrive before Christmas. I recently acquired Old School Tactical Volume III: Pacific War 1942/45 and I like the system.

I also splurged a bit on myself for two other games from an online retail seller:

I tried to order a game from the Lock n’ Load Publishing sale but couldn’t. Seems that whenever I try to place an order the shipping selection is lost. Same error on iOS, MacOS, and Windows devices in different browsers. (Sigh.) Guess the Interwebs Gods are telling me I spent too much already…

Wargame Practitioner

Am in the midst of a reading/research review of my library on the 1982 South Atlantic Campaign. Plenty of books but too few wargames. Detailed post in the future…


The day after Black Friday I stalked the tables at my FLGS, Huzzah Hobbies in Loudon, VA in support of Small Business Saturday. I was a bit surprised to find a Hollandspiele boardgame, The Field of the Cloth of Gold (designer Amabel Holland, 2020). Hollandspiele games are usually print-on-demand via Blue Panther and I had not previously seen a copy of any Hollandspiele game in this store. The game is still in shrink and I’m not sure if the shop ordered a few copies or if it was a consignment of sorts but it was 50% off (plus “Mil-D” – military discount) so I’m not complaining. I also found the game Flag Dash (PieceKeeper Games, 2016) on the $1 table so I picked that one up to add to the gifting collection of games.

Look Ahead

Gaming darkness. Have to take RockyMountainNavy Jr. back to college (whole day roundtrip driving). Have one more overseas business trip before Christmas (week on the road). Sister-in-law still occupying gaming space (ongoing for another five weeks).

Feature image courtesy of self

RockyMountainNavy.com © 2007-2022 by Ian B is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

2022 Holiday #Wargame #Boardgame Catalog from @compassgamesllc

I’m a bit behind the times here as the Mentioned in Dispatches “Annual Compass Games Holiday Catalog” episode from the Armchair Dragoons has already released. I was name-dropped at a few points in the episode and since I was not on that august panel for the discussion I want to take this opportunity to make a few comments of my own.

I warn you up front that I have a Love/Hate relationship with the Compass Games 2022 Holiday catalog. I LOVE that I get to see all the new (and old) games in one place. I LOVE the pricing on some of the items. However, I HATE to see the various dates. I strongly agree with some of the comments on the podcast; talking about delivery dates is very difficult and some of these games have been in the catalog FOREVER.


  • 2040: An American Insurgency (Early 2023) – Why? Because I loved Fortress America
  • Air and Armor: Operational Armored Warfare in Europe, Designer Signature Edition (Mid 2023) – Because I’m catching up on ‘Cold War Gone Hot’ titles I missed in the 80’s…
  • Blue Water Navy: The Pacific (Late 2023) – I was name-dropped on this one and I wouldn’t be RockyMountainNAVY if I didn’t want another Cold War naval game…
  • Breaking the Chains 2.0 (Mid 2023) – I own the original BtC and always have enjoyed this hypothetical future naval conflict…
  • Brief Border Wars 2 (Late 2023) – I love Brian Train’s Brief Border Wars 1 and look forward to the next installment in this very exciting game system…
  • Carrier Battle: Philippine Sea (Early 2023) – Jonathan Southard and navy; need I say more? **UPDATE- The game has gone to Kickstarter which means it’s likely 60 days or so from delivery.
  • Eastern Front Operational Battles (Late 2023) – A throwback to the old SPI quad games; four games for the price of one!
  • Seapower and the State (Late 2023) – The folks on the podcast didn’t seem to realize that this is a do-over from the earlier (1982) game that, as I understand it, started out as a “professional” wargame for the military that went commercial.
  • Series 120 – WWII Campaigns: 1940, 1941, and 1942 (Late 2023) – The GDW version of a (almost) SPI quad game; the ‘120’ means it is meant to be playable in 120 minutes…
  • War in the South Atlantic (Early 2024) – A Falklands War game? SIGN ME UP! (I will order once it shows up on the website).

Not shown in the catalog but also apparently forthcoming sometime in the future from Compass Games is Divine Wind: Pacific Naval Operations in World War II by designers Frank Davis and Ron Toelke. A Twitter post that includes a mock-up of the game box was posted in late October.

Courtesy @FdavisFrank on Twitter

While the many wargame titles are exciting, I’m a bit disappointed by these timelines. The fact most are loaded into late 2023 is more a reflection of what titles interest me than production planning by Compass but still:

  • Early 2023 – 2 (See Carrier Battle above)
  • Mid 2023 – 2
  • Late 2023 – 5
  • 2024 – 1

While I fully acknowledge the dates are a SWAG* at least it’s a bit better than the nebulous popularity contest that the GMT Games P500 has seemingly devolved into.

Second Looks – Games on Sale that I Might Acquire

  • Paper Wars 83 – Rising Sun Over China (Blowout Priced) – ???
  • Paper Wars 85 – RUSSIA FALLING (Blowout Priced) – Timely?
  • Command and Colors Jacobite Rising (Holiday Price) – Bargain?
  • Brotherhood and Unity (Holiday Price) – Heard some good things about this one…
  • Korea Fire and Ice (Blowout Price) – Korean War games are a thing of mine…


Would be interested in hearing your comments on the 2022 Compass Games Holiday Catalog. Jump on over to the forums at Armchair Dragoons and leave a comment or here is you like!

* Scientific Wild A$$ Guess

Feature image courtesy

RockyMountainNavy.com © 2007-2022 by Ian B is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Giving Thanks for #Wargame Sales

If you missed the great GMT Games 50% sale earlier this year there are many other chances to get in on great wargame sales. Here are a few that I am aware of. For the record, not a single company has compensated me in any manner for these mentions; indeed, I am actually “compensating” many of them by making a purchase!

Academy Games

Compass Games Holiday Sale

  • It’s time to celebrate the holidays with special savings from Compass Games! We invite you to download our 2018 Holiday Catalog with special savings galore. Our holiday price brings you 30% off the retail price. Use the catalog order form or go online and use coupon code: HOLIDAY18. Note that special prices and preorder prices are already discounted so no holiday code is necessary at check-out. See catalog for more details. The holiday and special prices are valid through 1/15/2019.

Conflict Simulations LLC

  • CSL is having 15% off sale, just use the discount code: THANKSGIVING at the checkout.

Flying Pig Games

  • From RIGHT NOW, through Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Flying Pig Tuesday (Nov 27th), all in-stock, boxed games in the Flying Pig inventory are 50% off. That includes, Armageddon War, Burning Lands, Old School Tactical Vol I, Old School Tactical Vol II, Old School Tactical Airborne, Night of Man, and ’65 Squad-level Battles in Jungles of Vietnam. Click here to visit our website and Happy Shopping!


  • No sale yet, but I saw Tom Russell post in a BGG forum that his sale starts 01 Dec.

OSS (One Small Step)

  • From all of us at One Small Step, please accept our wishes for a safe and joyful Thanksgiving holiday! To help celebrate, we are now running our annual Black Friday sale. 25% off published games and magazines. Simply enter the following code at checkout: BLACKFRISale runs now through Monday the 26th. Does not include pre-order items, subscriptions, or games already on sale.

Revolution Games

  • November Sale – Save up to 40% on select titles.

Tiny Battle Publishing

  • From RIGHT NOW, through Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Tiny Battle Tuesday (Nov 27th), all in-stock, games in the Tiny Battle Publishing inventory are 25% off. Click here.

Don’t forget your FLGS either. Some of them are having sales too!

For all my wargaming friends out there, have yourself a blessed Thanksgiving and a happy Christmas season. May all your favorite wargames find their way into the trench beneath your tree and breakout in the New Year.

Featured image courtesy worldoftanks.com

#4thofJulyWeekend #Wargame – Liberty of Death: The American Insurrection (GMT Games, 2016)

It seemed fitting that on this Fourth of July weekend I pull out my absolutely favorite game on the American Revolution, Liberty or Death: The American Insurrection. This is Volume V of the COIN-series from GMT Games. I choose the short duration scenario, The  Southern Campaign, using the Optional Sprint Scenario rules.

As I have stated before, LoD is not really a wargame. Each faction must simultaneously cooperate with their allies and fight their enemies while trying to win. Thus, although the Patriots and French are allied, they both have independent victory conditions.

The Southern Campaign covers from 1778 to 1780, although in the Sprint Scenario only the first two years are played.

Midway thru 1778

Unlike my previous games where I was really just learning the rules, this game I was able to actually try a bit more strategy. I still messed up the rules in a few places, but it didn’t prevent me from having a great time!

Philadelphia Before the Attack (End of 1778)

Play was not perfect by any measure. The Patriots played a more northern strategy while the Royalists tried to turn the south. As 1779 neared an end, Washington and Rochambeau both took on Clinton in New York City.

Winter Quarters Ends 1779 – Indecisive in New York City

Alas, the Patriots and French blew their timing, and at the end of 1779 and the Sprint Scenario, Clinton held in New York City. Meanwhile, Tories had been busy in the South. The final score was a Royalist Victory.

End of The Southern Campaign – Sprint Scenario

The gameplay mechanics of LoD are actually quite simple and I think I have pretty much got them down. The much harder part is taking those “simple” mechanics and executing a “complex” strategy. Unlike many games which get played a few times then collect dust until that far-off next scenario, Liberty or Death will definitely land on the table more often.


#4thofJulyWeekend at the National Museum of the Marine Corps

Invasion of Tarawa – with Air Support

Little RMN was agitating this morning that we really should go to a nice museum at least once this holiday weekend. So we jumped in the RMN-mobile and made our way to Quantico, VA and the National Museum of the Marine Corps.

This is a beautiful museum that covers the history of the Marines from 1776-1975. What, you say? Why stop there? The docent told us that they are working on a new wing that will bring us up to the 21st Century (scheduled to open in 2018). But what they have is more than enough and quite spectacular!

M26 Pershing in the Korean War

The museum is beautiful. In addition to the many artifacts and historical items, it has many displays that vividly capture moments in history. These displays bring history alive by not only using static displays but visuals accented by lighting, sound, vibrating floors, blowing winds, and even deep cold. Walking through the Chosin Reservoir  display the room is deeply chilled with a breeze blowing. Not nearly as bad as it was for the real Devil Dogs that were there, but a small glimpse – and feel – of what it was like.

The museum also does a good job of remembering that the Marines were not all just glory in combat. There is a very nice tribute to John Philip Sousa and his music. Indeed, it is hard to imagine to 4th of July parade (or any celebration) without his great music.

IMG_1719The museum also manages to work in unusual bits of history that leaves one shaking their head. Like the story of Sergeant Reckless. Sergeant Reckless was horse that served alongside Marines in the Korean War as a pack animal. It is a wonderful story and it is awesome to see this fine animal proudly placed on the walls of the museum not far from where the Medal of Honor winners are shown.

The National Museum of the Marine Corps does an excellent job in showcasing the history of the Marine Corps and their contributions to freedom  of the United States of America. Surprisingly, admission to this great museum is free. The immeasurably valuable part is all the history shown inside.