No announcement yet.

What Are Games Here - Why Do We Play Them

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Karakris
    Originally posted by niikeb View Post
    Pardon my ignorance, but what is a war games and how does one play.

    Wouldn't all historical war games be alternative history?
    A War Game on here, is usually Played by doing planning, working out Stategies and Operational Approaches, even Tactics - then Posting what you are doing, often in the form of Orders.
    The Game Master then determines what happens - the Consequences, Battle Reports, After Action Reports, and perhaps consequences for the different Factions. These will be Posted as well.
    In addition - there may be comments, discussions, Congratulations or Criticisms, even Insults - Posted between the Characters ( which can be Kings, Lords, Presidents or Military Leaders ) represented by the Players.

    Yes - Historical War Games are all forms of Alternative History.
    However, some fit much more strictly into this category - whilst others are much "looser", allowing greater freedom of action for the Players.

    The real difference is whether the Game is conceived and run in order to determine the actual Answer to "what would have happened if .... ?", that would be Strictly a case of Alternative History.

    Alternately, the Game may be conceived and run in order to provide the Players with an opportunity to play a "Fun" Game, in the context of some real historical setting, but which does not have to exactly conform with either real or modified History - greater liberties being taken with the Setting, so that it is not truly an OTL, and perhaps with some fictional characters, and a fair sprinkling of fictional events.
    This would be started by something along the lines of - "Is Anyone interested in playing a Game set in the ...... ?" - rather than a "What if ..... ?" Question.
    This departs somewhat further from the idea of Alternative History - being more like Historical Fiction or just simply fictional "Gaming".

    However - true, it is matter of Viewpoint, and of Interpretation. It is also, possibly, a matter of the Intention for the Game.

    Leave a comment:

  • niikeb
    Pardon my ignorance, but what is a war games and how does one play.

    Wouldn't all historical war games be alternative history?

    Leave a comment:

  • Karakris
    started a topic What Are Games Here - Why Do We Play Them

    What Are Games Here - Why Do We Play Them

    What Are Games, Here ? – And Why Do We Play Them ??

    I have been on this Forum Site since February 2011 – and I have looked at a number of the Games which have been Played or which are being Played, on this Site – and also some Potential Games which have really failed to get started.

    I have been a Player in five Games on this Site – though two were for brief periods, because the Game effectively shut-down very soon after I joined.

    A part of these Answer to the Questions which I have asked above, depends on which type of Game it is – because people play Games on this Site for a number of different Reasons, depending on the type of Game.

    Types of Games

    There are a number of Types of Games which have Run on this Site, which or currently Running, or which might Run on this Site.
    They are largely distinguished from each other, by the Reasons WHY they were created in the first place ( or sometimes evolved ), and related to this, by the Aims and Intentions of the principal Players who first got them going.

    Alternate History Games – “What If … ?” Games

    These are definitely the most common types of Games – stemming from an initial “What if … happened” premise. Generally, all other Historical Facts are assumed to be the same, or very similar, to Known History – and so it is only the one Fact which is altered, to yield different consequences.
    The vast majority of such Games will of course be WAR Games
    Games in which a War which never happened is assumed to take place
    Games in which a War which did take place, is assumed to begin with different initial conditions. These may be different Alignments, Politics ( maybe ), or even some different Technolgies for one or more protaganists - than were actually the case.

    The corrolary to the “what if … ?” question is a desire to actually “fight it out” in Game form, to get some idea of the actual consequences of the new Alternate Scenario.

    The AIM of any such Game Is for one side or the other to Win.
    However – the Consequences of such a Victory would not usually be the Anihilation or Extermination of one Nation or one People.


    A War in which the Native Americans ( Indians ) Unite and rise-up, to form a close Alliance - and try to push the English and French Settlers out of North America.
    This Game might be starting soon.

    An Alternate Version of the First World War – in which America ( the U.S.A. ) joins in on the side of Germany and Austria, from the beginning. This one has actually been fought-out, with the emphasis on Oceanic ( Naval ) Operations – having very different consequences.

    An Alternate Timeline in which Japan begins an Invasion of Hawaii, immediately after Pearl Harbour. It is not certain whether this will ever get started – they are still arguing over the possibility / impossibility of the whole thing.

    An Alternate Timeline in which Russia begins World War III in 1946 – invading Europe and threatening the West. It is not certain whether this will ever get started – they are still arguing over the possibility / impossibility of the whole thing.

    There are several others of this type – Games which have run, Games which may be running now, and Games which might run in the future.

    Historical Games – “For Fun”

    These are also fairly common. In these Games a known Historical Context is used as the starting point, and Players are invited to take Roles in the development of a new Timeline which will see how things go.
    The vast majority of such Games will of course be WAR Games – or Games of Combat. They will also be constrained within a System of Playing Rules – from which the type of Conflict is deduced and by which it is constrained

    These Games are more in the nature of Fun things – Games where Players can use existing Primary or Secondary Characters in the real life Timeline, but their actions will be what the Players decide, within the Playing Rules – or Players may sometimes create their own Characters, within reason.

    The AIM of any such Game Is for one side or the other to Win. However – it is the Playing which is perhaps the greatest FUN – rather than the Victory.
    Consequently – there is some interest in keeping the Game gong for a fair length of time.


    A Medieval War between Kingdoms in Europe – This Game is currently running.

    A Medieval War based on the First Crusade – This Game is currently running.

    A Period during the Wars of the Roman Empire – A number of these Games have been played.

    The Conflict between the Pirates in the Carribean Sea, and the Authorities ( mainly the British Navy ) – This Games started, but it has stopped, as the Game Master became too busy to continue the Game.

    Alternate History – Fantasy “What If … ?” Proposals

    In theory, these sort of “What if … happened ?” premises COULD lead to a Game.
    However, either the person proposing the idea either had no intention of it being taken seriously, or made the proposal in a crazy or silly way - or in nearly every case, those who bothered to read it, could not begin to take it seriously. These are the “what if ..” ideas which almost never lead to Games being created.
    These usually either involve Battles or Wars between Forces from different periods of History ( or the Future ), Battles or Wars between Technologically Advanced People and Tribal Peoples – or in some way or other bring in Supernatural Entities, or Aliens to fight modern or historical Armies.

    Alternate History – Sci Fi - Roleplay Games

    I will freely admit that there is only one Game which has been based on this Idea. A Roleplay Game set in the same “Universe” as the Firefly T.V. Series.
    In some ways this is a “Pirates” Game set in the Future – the Players take the parts of a group of Criminal Mercenaries, who try to survive and make a living in the “frontier worlds”, which are not really under the control of the Federation, avoiding or battling with other Criminal Mercenaries, avoiding the cannibal creatures who infest parts of space, and “living by their wits”. They form a single Crew, under one Leader – but at present have more than one Ship.

    Needless to say – this is a FUN type Game – and at the present it has gone through several Episodes.

    These is much scope for there to be a number of Sci Fi Roleplay Games – set in different “Sci Fi Universes”, which have been created by T.V. Series and Film Series.
    However – there may not be many Members on this Site who are keen enough on Sci Fi, to join any such Games.

    The AIM of any such Game is perhaps more for the group of Players to survive, to continue to have New Adventures. Pehaps there is no real way for them to Win in this kind of Game.

    Alternate History – Sci Fi Wargame

    I will freely admit that there is only one Game which has been based on this Idea.
    A “Nation Play” War Game, set in a largely fictional future “Universe”.

    In this Game – the Humans and their Friendly Alien Allies ( The Confederation ) are involved in an incredibly long and rather slow WAR with an Empire of definitely UN friendly Aliens, who have conquered 70% of this Galaxy ( the Milky Way ).
    The Aliens have Enslaved or Exterminated every single Species which they have encountered in the expansion of their Empire. Those who they could use they Enslaved - those who they could not use, or who fought back were exterminated.

    Then they encountered the peoples of The Confederation – and this War began. The Peoples of the Confederation ( led by Humans ) refused to be Enslaved and began to fight back.
    Morally – the Peoples of the Confederation are appalled at the whole idea of this Slavery and Extermination, and regard the Empire as a totally WRONG thing.
    Practically – the Peoples of the Confederation are fighting for their Survival.

    The Peoples of the Confederation are outnumbered several Millions of times over – and only survive in part because the Enemy has a vast Empire of Slave to control, with its own manpower and resources.
    The Confederation is also Technologically more Advanced than the Empire – due to major differences in the type of Creatures who run the Empire.
    The Confederation has been able to “reach out” and expand into new Star Systems – finding new resources on Planets and Asteroids, and to expand its population by Cloning.
    Due to its exploration of new Star Systems ( not just obviously useful ones ), the Confederation has also been able to exploit the discovery of New Technologies from abandoned Alien Artifacts.
    The Confederation is still expanding, building more Defences and more Space Warships, increasing its Population – Surviving, and even growing.

    However – VICTORY against the Empire is just not possible, ever. The Empire grew over a period of some 500,000 Years or more, to its present form – it would possibly take as long as that to Destroy it, if that were possible.

    The Confederation can survive and grow, and there will be more Space battles in the future – Battles for Defence of the existing Star Systems and Planets, and Battles to destroy Systems of Planets of the Empire.
    The Cnfederation can Colonies new Planets, Moons and Asteroids – and develop the existing Bases much further.

    However – it is an unreal situation in one way. If the Empire “pulled out all of the stops” – it could Destroy the whole of the Confederation, within a Month or more.
    The Game would then quickly end.
    So, this Game is still running - because the alternative is a quick and obvious end, involving almost no FUN, and very little thought or planning.
    In the words of a respectred Sci Fi Author – it would be simply a case of “how the Heroes die”.

    There are actually a number of FUN aspects to this Game.
    Apart for the Strategy, Operations and Tactics of Space Battles -
    There is the development of New Technologies ( ideas can come from any of the Players ) -
    There is the Discovery of new Star Systems and Planets, some of which can be very strange -
    There is the discovery of new Non-Human Peoples ( ideally with Players to represent them ) -
    There is finding more abandoned Alien Artifacts, with New Technologies - And Exploring Space and the Universe itself.

Latest Topics