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  • Best beginner games

    Which games would you choose to convert the masses? I mean games that fit the qualifications of board wargaming, are in print (or easily obtained), and can be learned in one playing?

    I put forward three selections and one that I haven't played, but which I've heard good things about.



    Clash of Giants series is very traditional - hex and counter, attack and defense with your basic infantry and cavalry units. Very little in the way of special rules.


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    Command and Colors: Napoleonics
    Easy to learn tactical game. Firepower and shock can both be done in moments. Gives the three tiered system of the Napoleonic Wars in an easy to use system.


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    Probably the simplest wargame I've ever played. Squares instead of hexes, but the special rules and cards make it interesting for any side. Give the beginner the British or French, and mix it up with an unusual army. America (of 1812) is almost all infantry and fights in an unorthodox manner. Ottomans are almost all cavalry, but are fragile as a result. An expansion is coming out introducing Qin Chinese, the Tokugawa Shogunate, Sweden, and Indian forces, promising that the game will be the last to go stale. Also, there are no pre-set battles, meaning that you can really fight however you want, however implausible it may be.

  • #2
    I really enjoy Memoir '44 and play it several times a week.
    Proud to be an American Veteran

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    • #3
      I've heard great things about Command and Colors. The physical presentation just doesn't appeal to me though.

      The Standard Combat Series is a good place to start. You get a short set of rules covering a number of games. It's simple move/combat/exploitation. Each game in the system comes with a few pages of specific rules to make it unique. I love the system. Yom Kippur is nice. It's not well balanced though. The new guy should play the Israelis.



      If you really want to get down to basics i might suggest Victory Point Games. They are an excellent entry point and great games for when you are short on time or need something portable (11"x17" maps in a ziplock bag). Frank Chadwick's and Paul Koenig's games use some simple but engaging mechanics. They are also good for introducing players to mechanics that are used in a number of more complex games. They give you the groundwork for the hobby.

      Last edited by Duncan; 04 Feb 13, 22:20.
      AHIKS - Play by (E)mail board wargaming since 1965.
      The Blitz - Play by Email computer wargaming.

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      • #4
        I left out the one I didn't play: No Retreat! The Russian Front
        Army/Army Group level game with intuitive rules and good play balance...or so I've heard.

        I'd like to play more of The Gamers standard combat series, but they go out of print too quickly.

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        • #5
          I love No Retreat! The Russian Front. I wouldn't hesitate to play a beginner. It's low counter density and the rules are fairly simple. However, they aren't intuitive and the rules and victory conditions change as the game goes on. Some rules, such as counter blows, cause confusion. Also, the rules that come with the game mean the Germans will win on turn 6 in the full campaign. This is corrected in the living rules, which are a great improvement. Two absolute wargame novices might find the game a bit annoying as their introduction to the hobby. One novice and one gamer .
          AHIKS - Play by (E)mail board wargaming since 1965.
          The Blitz - Play by Email computer wargaming.

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          • #6
            Tank on Tank

            Manouevre is good, too, but I'd start any newbie w/ Tank on Tank and go from there
            In the event of another forum meltdown, feel free to join us over at www.armchairdragoons.com

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Duncan View Post
              I love No Retreat! The Russian Front. I wouldn't hesitate to play a beginner. It's low counter density and the rules are fairly simple. However, they aren't intuitive and the rules and victory conditions change as the game goes on. Some rules, such as counter blows, cause confusion. Also, the rules that come with the game mean the Germans will win on turn 6 in the full campaign. This is corrected in the living rules, which are a great improvement. Two absolute wargame novices might find the game a bit annoying as their introduction to the hobby. One novice and one gamer .
              I agree. In my opinion NR is a must for grognards seeking a relatively fast and absolutely funny light wargame. Once you understand how counterblows work and how they can exploited, the gameplay is a great pleasure, but not for novice players...

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              • #8
                I would go for Advanced Squad Leader, learn it the hard way
                "Every man thinks meanly of himself for not having been a soldier" - Samuel Johnson

                "Kerls, wollt ihr denn ewig leben?"

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