Monday, January 31, 2011

Conquest of the Aegean AAR 2: The German Counter Attack!

The German Counter Attack! (a "what if" scenario)

This is a sequel to my first battle report, so make sure to read that before proceeding. Please note that this AAR was not finished but I wanted to post the gameplay up anyway so people can see how the title flows.


April 12th - 16th, 1941. Greece. (4 days)

Axis = Grey or Light Blue (Luftwaffe)
Australian/New Zealand = Green
Greek Units = White




"The Germans have managed to scrape together a mobile and heavily armed force; initially only the rest of the regiment who formed the original bridge defenses will be available, but during the first few hours a Panzer Division Recon Battalion and an entire Panzer Regiment will be added, along with most of the support troops of the Panzer Division including engineers and two battalions of artillery. Allied air recon has shown that this force includes at least one complete battalion of tanks, expected to arrive some time shortly before midday."

The Germans want their bridges back, and they are coming right down the throat to get them! The Allies must hold the bridges and wait for reinforcements. What the Germans don't know is that the Allies plan to shift some armor and equipment to meet this new counterattack and then the Allies want to push on to Lamia.

On day two, between 6 and 7 am, the 1st UK Armored Brigade will make its way from the south, so we need to hold out until then.

DAY ONE SITUATION

It is a quiet night, and the Australians and Greeks have heard news that the Germans have freed up a large amount of troops to come back and try to recapture the bridges that were taken 2 days ago. The units and the layout are as follows:



Since it's nighttime and visibility is poor, the Allies take this opportunity to dig in and setup for a possible probe the next day. Intelligence reports that only 803 or so Germans are left to defend Lamia. However the prospect of German units arriving in force the next day makes them hesitant to push the tired Australians into combat. The Greeks have shifted their 82nd Infantry to the right flank to defend the marshes, and the Australians have relieved the New Zealanders in Komma and taken the left flank over.

Some support units are called up and placed on the opposite side of the river. This includes 25 pounder guns and some 2 pounder guns and other anti armor that I think will be useful to hold the Germans back if they come down the road. The 8th Australian takes up defensive position in Komma to harass the road.



Friday, January 28, 2011

The All Newbie Federation PC Bloodbowl league needs more

I have long been an addict of miniature gaming whether it was Warhammer 40K or Flames of War. Since local opponents have dried up for all games but Bloodbowl I have decided to practice up and kick start learning Blood Bowl again. To do this I am using the excellent PC version of the game by Cyanide Software. This is probably the best miniatures to PC game conversion ever aside from Field of Glory. Complete with full online league support, player skills, team editing, star players and complete match tracking the game is a boon to the online gaming community.

The game is available on STEAM here:

http://store.steampowered.com/app/58520

You MUST own the Legendary Edition not the Dark Elf Edition. The Legendary version has 20 races, support for private and public leagues, and is needed to work with other other people owning the same version. If you own the DE Edition it is 33% off to upgrade to the LE version.

We have a league set aside for absolutely new players. The maximum total value of the team can be no more than 1100 points. The lowest is 940 so we will not be accepting pimped out teams.

To join, if you own the game, search in private leagues for All Newbie Federation. Our password is BFG in all caps, and you must apply with a team that you have not registered with any other leagues yet. To do so create a team. Then find the league. Then at the bottom of the screen click the dropdown, find the team you want to register with and apply with that team. Once I accept you will be in. We have only TWO spots left. This is a simple 4 team league and you must be able to play at least once a week in a live game session that is turn based and will probably take about 40 minutes.





Wednesday, January 26, 2011

HISTORY - Great Battles Medieval tutorial footage

Great Battles Medieval is Slitherine's quasi turn based quasi RTS game about the Hundred Years War. If you look over on the Slitherine forums you won't see this game getting much attention compared to say Field of Glory or Commander WW2 but there is a good game there if you can get around the interface. Why Slitherine does not promote it more I am not sure and you won't find a demo for it anywhere and very little footage other than CGI clips and battle action. Much like their arcade style flight sim Slitherine doesn't really push the game too much since the multiplayer I imagine is quite dead.

Since so little was known about it I took the plunge and got it. I didn't do it to advertise it I had actually been looking into the game for a while and I figured why not. After all there were plenty other games I had actually wasted money on and didn't play and this one at least had a good company behind it.

The game plays out on a grid so the way the units move may look a bit awkward. This is because they need to move by grid squares and line up charges and follow a certain path. So while it may look like a free form RTS it actually is not and I think this throws a lot of people off that initially look at it.

Anyway the video below covers only the tutorial for combat and the opening few example missions. NOT shown is the army building, management, overland campaign map movement and several other features. Enjoy. To find out more about the game see this link:

http://www.slitherine.com/games/thcgbotma

Once I get a game or two under my belt I will come back with an AAR. The game is pausable and orders can be issued much like Empire Total War however there are very subtle flanking and attacking moves you can make due to the gameboard aspect. I should also point out this is made for the XBOX 360 so being a console title probably gives it the stigma of being a game for simpletons. I will have to check into this and see if that is indeed the case. So far I like what I see but then again I have a tendency to latch onto quick beer and pretzel type games as a guilty pleasure.

  • Free form quest map that allows players to decide when and where to fight within a historical framework.

  • More than 20 different units all accurately researched and carefully modeled in amazing detail.

  • Almost infinite number of equipment combinations.

  • Specializeyour squads with over 100 unique skills.

  • Play as the English under the Black Prince or the French under Joan of Arc.

  • Innovative Battle Card system that gives bonuses and penalties in battle.

  • The most detailed and realistic medieval combat model ever created.

  • Story movies created from hundreds of hours of the TV channel HISTORY™ library combined with in game engine footage.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Pride of Nations - Developer Diary 8 - The Colonial Game

A new update on the Pride of Nations forum has a developer diary that covers aspects of the Colonial game in AGEOD's upcoming Victorian exploration romp.

You can find out some good information on how they plan to carry out the various ideas of expansion and colonization so prevalent in the 19th century.

http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/showthread.php?517364-Pride-of-Nations-Developer-Diary-8-The-Colonial-Game
For the colonial game, we decided to focus on two key concepts: colonial penetration and spheres of influence. As we worked on the world map, we carved out quite a few areas that we shall call, for the sake of simplifying explanation, "colonies." These areas are present almost everywhere on the world, save for those regions where civilized, stable nations are present. Each active major nation has a Sphere of Influence (SOI) for each colony, as well as a Colonial Penetration rating.

The main reason for the presence of SOI is for helping players (and the AI) to 'invest' in colonies of interest. Colonies are rated between -5 and +5 in terms of SOI, and this is the amount of prestige that the nation will gain (or lose) each turn while holding control of the colony. In game terms, this will lead to a scramble in order to get the juiciest colonies before someone else grabs them. Of course, the various colonies' SOI are not equivalent between nations; for instance, Britain will have a high SOI in Canada while most others will have negative ones. In Africa, the Congo will probably end up with high-level SOI for most nations. This is an arbitrary representation of the interest a given region had for the various nations. Nations that did not go after colonies will have negative SOI almost everywhere; thus, they can partake in the colonial game if they wish, but this would just end up costing them prestige and their efforts would probably be best used elsewhere…but it’s still possible to get colonies if you just want one. Also, for people who would prefer a more open game, there is always the possibility to check the 'No SOI penalty' option. This is our way to please both types of players.

All I can say about this game, despite the fact that I want it, is it better have the documentation and tutorials to back up all this stuff. It looks very deep and complex so let us hope we don't have to struggle with the game before we learn to use it.



HPS SIMS updates Bulge '44 and Antietam

New updates today for Panzer Campaigns Bulge '44 and Campaign Antietam from the Civil War series.

You can get them all here: http://www.hpssims.com/Pages/Whatsnew/whatsnew.asp

Antietam has added a NO CD check (YAY) as well as the following:

- Added an option for Mouse Wheel Zoom.

Panzer Campaigns Bulge '44 has added the following:

NOTE: Starting with this version, no CD-check is performed by the
main program and all documentation is supported only in PDF format,
available from the Help menu in each application.

Changes for Bulge '44 1.09

- Change so that Disrupted units do not receive replacements and Detached units receive replacements at one-fourth (not one-half) the normal rate.
- Change so that for an HQ unit, both the actual and nominal command range are displayed in the alternate hex info area (actual/nominal), the Command Range view option uses the actual Command Range, while the Maximum Range view option shows the Nominal Command Range (see the Command section of the Users Manual).
- Change so that F quality units can recover from Disruption and Broken.
- Added ability for engineers to abandon an engineering bridge (see Engineer Menu).
- Added current date and time to Scheduled Dialog.
- Change so that Saving Movement Points will save enough points for towed artillery unit to unlimber at the end of its movement.
- Added the ability for commandos to blow bridges and damage AT trenches.
- Change so that Partisans and Commandos can move from one enemy ZOC to another.
- Change so that Commandos are always in command and never isolated.
- Change to allow Battleships to fire AA at high flying aircraft.
- Added new Forced Bridge Crossing Rule which allows units to force a bridge crossing against enemy ZOC (see Users Manual under Movement).
- Increased Engineer digging in bonus from 2x to 3x.
- Added toolbar button for highlighting units in Travel Mode.
- Added new Bunker and Mine Prob Parameter Data Values and allowing non-bridge engineer units to construct Bunkers.
- Added new Night Move Disruption parameter data value which determines probability of night movement by non-rail and non-travel or non-road movement units causing Disruption.
- Change so that Interdiction attacks have twice the chance of Disruption and can cause the loss of up to half the movement allowance in movement points.
- Added a range 1 hard target artillery fire modifier (see Users Manual under Firing).
- Added Optional Rule for delayed reporting of enemy Disruption.
- Change so that towed AT gun unit which changes to Travel Mode without expending any movement points prior to that change will not trigger enemy Opportunity Fire.
- Added Quality Fire Modifier Parameter Data Value which applies to quality A and B units.
- (Editor) Added ability to determine units which have no on-map HQ under File Menu.
- (Editor) Added Reinforcemnts to Scenario Summary file under File Menu.
- Added new Submap Editor (pcsub.exe).

2011 Oscar Nominations

As I do every year here is the list of the 2011 Oscar Nominations announced at 7:30 am this morning:

For the full list of course see the Oscar website: http://www.oscars.org/awards/academyawards/83/nominees.html



Best Picture
Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
127 Hours
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone


Best Supporting Actor
Christian Bale, The Fighter
John Hawkes, Winter's Bone
Jeremy Renner, The Town
Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Geoffery Rush, The King's Speech

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech
Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

Best Actor
Javier Bardem, Biutiful
Jeff Bridges, True Grit
Jessie Eisenberg, The Social Network
Colin Firth, The King's Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours

Best Actress
Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence, Winter's Bone
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Michelle Williams, Blue Valentine

Best Director
Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
David O. Russell, The Fighter
Tom Hooper, The King's Speech
David Fincher, The Social Network
Joel Coen/Ethan Coen, True Grit

Turbo Tape Games and Naval War: Arctic Circle

This website:

http://www.navalwargame.com/community

Has details on a "new real-time strategy (RTS) game where the player commands modern naval and aerial forces against an AI player or other players over a local network or the internet."

The video below is a teaser trailer showing some of the look and feel of the upcoming set in the year 2030:



Will unit/weapon/sensor X be part of the game?



The major surface ships, submarines and aircraft (and their major armaments and sensors) of Norway, the U.S., the U.K. and Russia will certainly be a part of Naval War: Arctic Circle. We will provide details about these platforms on the community forum during the development. Those who have seen the promotional material, will have noticed the Nimitz class aircraft carrier, the Arleigh Burke class destroyer and Norway’s own Fridtjof Nansen class frigate, and these are certainly major platforms to be included.

Thanks WarfareSims.com  http://www.warfaresims.com/?p=1358

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Scenario Design Center's Downloads section is now up

The Scenario Design Center's DOWNLOADS section is now up, hosting files, mods and scenarios from all John Tiller and HPS SIMS games. Head on over and check out the over 200 files on display and see what you may have missed in your HPS SIMS or John Tiller games.

http://downloads.hist-sdc.com

An introduction to the site has been posted by Steve on the blog for the Scenario Design Center:
A little back history here; when Rich first ran the SDC site he had a downloads section, which was pretty comprehensive when it came to HPS products as well as John Tiller's designs from Talonsoft. With 2011, that section is returning to the site.

Barring release material, re-establishing that area will be the site's priority; so in effect I am calling my shot in this one.  Software has been found, at it looks as if it will work fairly well. There are a few hitches to be worked out with some of the controls as it is a little new to me (although the format does resemble forum controls -so it looks relatively easy to set up.).

So coming soon to this place, will be a dedicated download area, and the blog idea will sort of -well, still be there - but I guess you can call it all a learning experience.

I neglected to point out that there currently is an 8 mb file limit size. We will be looking to modify that to allow for larger files in the future (hopefully the near run future at that), 8mb was the software's default size.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Conquest of the Aegean AAR: Bridges over the Sperkhios River

(a "what if" scenario)

April 10th - 11th, 1941. Greece. (2 days)

Axis = Grey or Light Blue (Luftwaffe)
Australian/New Zealand = Green
Greek Units = White


A reinforced Australian Infantry Brigade attacks a German Infantry Battalion. The German attack in Greece has suffered a setback. A revolution in Bulgaria has threatened to cut German supply lines. As a result, the bulk of the German forces in Greece have been pulled back to protect the supply lines. Now holding the limit of the German advance are some weak German screening units. Allied command sees this as the perfect chance to strike back and recapture 3 key bridgeheads over the Sperkhios River.



DAY ONE BATTLE PLAN

Allied Command has passed the order down to Major General George Alan Vasey, head of the Australian 19th Infantry Brigade, to press the attack toward the Yef Alamanas bridge, the Komma bridge, and as a bonus the Sperkhios River ferry crossing. To do this he has at his disposal, along with his Aussie troops, the 2nd New Zealand Division Calvary Regiment and a partial Greek battalion (The Greek 82nd Infantry Regiment).

The battle plan is laid out and the troops are set. The Australians will launch a two pronged attack NE toward Yef Alamanas hoping to get to the bridge before the Germans blow it. One the left flank, the 2nd New Zealand Division will move north toward Komma with support from the Greeks.

All told Vasey has in his command some 4000 men and 102 armored fighting vehicles.



Arma 2 recommended mods and websites

I reinstalled Arma 2 recently mainly to play Operation Arrowhead. I never played the first Arma other than one or two missions and I didn't finish the Operation Arrowhead expansion when I got it. I got about 3 missions into the campaign and due to some bugs got frustrated and just put it down. The main problem I had is that I, like many others, tried to play the game wrongly. You cannot go in and attempt to play this game like Call of Duty. What you get out of it is what you put into it.

The game has a lot of depth and that will make many put it away since it does not play like your typical first person shooter. The game is also extremely moddable. One of the things I was looking for in my search were more scenarios and skins. Giving the fact that I am almost two years behind on this game you can imagine that I had a lot of catching up to do. While I do like my traditional hexed based wargames sometimes I like to get in there and take charge of the action myself and Arma 2 is really the closest thing I have found to let me do that. With controllable squad mates and the ability to drive any vehicle in the game it is a lot like Operation Flashpoint only without the suck.

Arma 2 is by no means a perfect game however. The interface is sloppy, the mission waypoint objectives are frequently bugged and not able to be advanced, squad AI is sketchy at best, and the game has a tendency to bite off more than it can chew in system performance. When it all comes together and works well however it is a thing of glory.

That of course was not enough for me. In any game that I can mod (like Combat Mission Shock Force and Elder Scrolls Oblivion) I like to push the limits and change it as much as possible. So without really finishing another mission other than the first British Forces expansion one, I was off to further mod the game and see what was out there.

I came upon the following sites:

http://www.armaholic.com

http://www.armedassault.info

http://www.ofpec.com/missions_depot

http://arma2.filefront.com

http://www.plannedassault.com (Use your web browser to pick and place squads and platoons, set objectives and define the situation. Next, wait for PlannedAssault to generate the corresponding mission and download it)

I was only able to find two scenarios and one must have mod thus far:


Rainy Fall Scenario: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=11547

Chesty Puller Campaign: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=7599

Last but not least the Advanced Combat Environment: http://ace.dev-heaven.net/Advanced_Combat_Environment

If you know of more mods please let me know. It is a hard search through the tons and tons of skins and partial mods that really do not do much to the game.

Finally of course I took a YouTube video of some of the gameplay for those that are wondering what the heck this post is all about. Near the end of the video I demonstrate how to call in support in its different varieties including doing a too close to call artillery strike that almost killed all of my men.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Wargaming news update: the busy week of AAR's

So far this week has been full of news that I have had to post quickly on the Facebook page but just an update real fast so that readers here know what has been going on.

Dominions 3 has gotten patched again as of yesterday and you can read all about that here: http://download.shrapnelgames.com/downloads/DOM3_Patch_History.pdf and you can download it here: http://www.shrapnelgames.com/Illwinter/DOM3/DOM3_page.html

Decisive Campaigns Warsaw to Paris was also patched to 1.04D. http://www.matrixgames.com/products/390/downloads/

War in the East had a super busy week last week with beta patches, a conversion of the user made tutorial to PDF and a lot more. I have uploaded the user created tutorial to my domain here which you can download at: http://www.bluntforcegamer.com/Books. The original Boot Camp post on the Matrix boards is here http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2649216 and was posted by dlazov66. Thanks for all your hard work!

Slitherine had another game announcement http://bluntforcegamer.com/?p=3583

Gladius blog announced the results of their survey about the Ancient Warfare Series http://tjd-gladius.blogspot.com/2011/01/lucius-on-aw-survey-results.html

Real and Simulated Wars blog reviewed and played the heck out of War in the East: http://kriegsimulation.blogspot.com/2011/01/gary-grigsbys-war-in-east-review.html

We got a new blog up and running in the wargaming arena with Fog of Wargames which then went ahead to belt out some really good AAR's including Hannibal. Read em here: http://fogofwargames.wordpress.com/2011/01/15

Board wargamers got good news when it was announced the best BOARD wargaming podcast was coming back with Point 2 Point getting a new episode: http://viewfromtheturret.com/2011/01/17/point-2-point-edpisode-43-now-available

Phew. Quite a few days there of some hectic activity. Ok now back to gaming. I recently uploaded a video of Ancient Warfare Gallic Wars but the game was not kind with FRAPS, as many wargames that play in a window are not. I could not get some of the movement command windows to pop up and some of the other things I wanted to show did not appear but you can get a general idea of the graphics in 2D and 3D mode in the video. Not much going on in the video but me moving and some minor combat.

As a side note I picked up King Arthur the Roleplaying Game and all the expansions on Gamers Gate for 17 dollars. Not bad for over 90 hours of content I would say. Grab them now while they are on sale and cheap. http://www.gamersgate.com/DD-KARPW/king-arthur-the-role-playing-wargame

I don't normally like RTS games unless its a Total War title (sometimes) or something like Rise of Nations but I do like the theme and setting for KA so I will give it a shot even though I have been less than thrilled with Paradox lately.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Slitherine announces Time of Fury WW2 game, beta test

Not to be confused with WW2 Time of Wrath Slitherine and Wastelands Interactive announced today that WW2 Time of Fury would be ready by springtime.

Today Slitherine and Wastelands Interactive are proud to announce a new game that will truly replicate all these aspects. The developers of the highly successful Time of Wrath are back to the European theater of war with an ambitious project that will allow players to truly experience what it was to be a decision maker of the period. Time of Fury spans the whole war in Europe and gives players the opportunity to control all types of units, ground, air and naval. Not only that, each player will be able to pick a single country or selection of countries and fight his way against either the AI or in multiplayer in hotseat or Play by E-Mail. This innovative multiplayer feature will give player the chance to fight bigger scenarios against many opponents, giving the game a strategic angle that has no equal in the market. The game uses Slitherine’s revolutionary PBEM++ server system.

The game will take advantage of, as stated above, Slitherine's great PBEM server system that we saw in Battlefield Academy and Field of Glory. The game looks to be an evolution of Time of Wrath from the screenshots on the title's main page. Matrix Games will be publishing. Features after the screenshot. I'm just wondering here but...will the naval rules be fixed and updated?




  • A huge campaign map spanning the entire European theatre with more than 40,000 hexes and  massive armies of over 1,000 units.

  • 5 epic Campaigns covering the entire war starting from 1939-1944 and to 2 smaller campaigns better suited to multiplayer.

  • Hundreds of historical events such as the Molotov Ribbentrop pact. Should Germany split Poland with the Soviet Union or risk war with the USSR. Should Germany form Vichy France for a quick surrender and to avoid fighting French units overseas but at the cost of not being able to attack Vichy controlled territories overseas.

  • Use Diplomacy points to influence the war readiness and war entry dates of neutral nations. Can Germany keep the USA out of the war long enough to conquer the UK or should it focus its diplomatic efforts on gaining allies in Finland or the Balkans. It’s even possible to cause coups changing the governments completely or to control your own populations ambitions for war.

  • Technology system with 5 areas of research. Upgrade obsolete units to modern weaponry. Even invest the atomic bomb and destroy the enemies will to fight.

  • Each nation has unique abilities. E.g. German panzers are faster while their supply system is less reliable.

  • Play multiplayer against a human opponent or play co-op with 2 human players against the AI.

  • Multiplayer handled via Slitherine’s revolution PBEM++ server.

  • Play as any country, or any combination of countries with the AI controlling the rest. Fight the war as just the UK or maybe you fancy your luck as Romania, Hungary & Bulgaria! More than 30 playable nations.

  • Complete scenario editor for modders that gives the ability to create new scenarios and campaigns.

  • Fog of war, dynamic weather, supply and many other factors give player realistic decisions to make throughout the war.

  • Use your resources to buy new units, repair, maintain and upgrade them, to research new technologies, invest in strategic movement, naval transport and amphibious landing craft.

  • Use strategic weapons to damage the enemies infrastructure.

  • Use convoys to keep cities and armies supplied.

  • Detailed & historical orders of battle in all scenarios with historical names for hundreds of land, air and naval units for full immersion.


Find out more here: http://www.slitherine.com/games/time_of_fury


Friday, January 14, 2011

Korsun Pocket El Alamein Scenario AAR

(A Korsun Pocket scenario)

October 23, 1942 - November 5, 1942, 26 turns

Axis (Italians and Germans) = Blue, Grey
British = Brown







El Alamein is a 26 turn battle. This scenario represents the 3rd battle of El Alamein during October 23, 1942 - November 5, 1942. In this battle, using the scenario written by Alessandro Bianchini and for download here, I shall play the Axis powers and attempt to rewrite history.

Each day is represented by 2 turns (day and night)



TURNS 1-3

The initial deployment is historically accurate. The Germans had at least 5 miles of mines and strong points laid out in front of the Allied powers the night the offensive started. My plan is to attack once the British are fully engrossed in trying to clear those minefields and I will seize the initiative and trap as many Allied units as possible. It is night time, and the British are about to open their huge offensive after Monty is pressed to produce results by Churchill.

The guns sound and the attack starts. The computer has the first turn in this one so I watch as he clears into the minefield. Not much happens on the first Allied turn. I can see them getting into position the way they want to advance and how they are approaching, now it is time for me to act.

I want to get all my divisional units together into stacks so that they can attack with integrity, and I line them up to hit the Allies at bulge points. I want to cut off as many of their units as possible



First thing I do is have the Luftwaffe bomb the hell out of the north highway, dropping interdiction and slowing the Allies down some. I make sure to get this behind advanced Allied units so that if I cut them off they cant move out fast.



Lets start in the south, where the British 44th Infantry Division is making a move to capture Deir el Munassib. I will stop this and move the 21st Panzer Division into action as well as the Italian 132 Ariete. In the picture below those are the units on the left. the brown units to the right are the British 44th Infantry. Two Italian supply convoys wait in back to keep the men fueled and ready.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Are YOU adverse to social media? That is ok but...

...you may miss out on some good stories. Social media is good for following game developers, producers, creators and publishers. In today's day and age it is a huge media advertising machine. Therefore I get a lot of my stories from there, especially Twitter.

Since I do not want to clog up my blog with constant spammings of news stories all day I tend to post a lot of hot news and quick links on the Blunt Force Gamer Facebook page. This is a fan dedicated page, not a PERSONAL page of mine. You are able in Facebook to make a fan page about subjects. As news and stories come in throughout the day I try to post them on the Facebook page. Therefore if you are on Facebook and you follow the BF page or "like" the Blunt Force page you get updated with news. Also note that I do update my Twitter with news events as well, and that is a pretty simple thing to follow. Also the Twitter is echoed on my blog's front page on the right hand side.

At any rate give it a shot if you want even more news, videos and links. You never know what you might find out.

All the links you need are on the upper right there or on the left where our Facebook badge is. Thanks for the follows and enjoy!

War in the East featured on gaming podcast

Hot on the heels of the new patch War in the East gets a bit of press time now.

Three Moves Ahead podcast, hosted by Troy Goodfellow, "Lum the Mad" Scott Jennings (yes the MMO dude) and Bruce G, takes on Erik Rutins and Joel Billings about Gary Grigsby's War in the East. That is a ton of names in one sentence.

You can download, subscribe or listen from the links on the page

http://flashofsteel.com/index.php/2011/01/13/three-moves-ahead-episode-99-war-in-the-east

Talk is brought up about the possible sequel and how they want to handle the western front.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

War in the East patched up, more due later

I haven't had much time to really get all into this game like I thought I would preferring instead to play other games and focus on smaller battles at the moment. A new patch was released yesterday and this brings the game up to 1.02. However take note:
To be clear, yesterday Erik told me they were going to release the beta 1.02 as an official patch. This is not the patch I was talking about in my recent posts. That patch (with the leader KIA changes, etc.) will likely be released as a beta 1.03 patch by the end of this week.

So while many were using 1.02 as a beta, there is ANOTHER patch coming soon.

Find out more details at the official site:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tt.asp?forumid=695&p=&tmode=1&smode=1

Monday, January 10, 2011

Korsun Pocket AAR: Wiking Whiteout

Feb 13th, 1944. Eastern Front. 1st SS and 5th SS after action report. (10 turns)

Axis = Blue
Russians = Red


This is the original Korsun Pocket by SSG. The game is old, but I feel that if you can learn this it provides a basis for all their other games.

This scenario is called "Wiking Whiteout" and it is small and a good way to practice the game.




TURNS 1-3

I have been tasked with taking the town of Muni, and holding Annovka in the south.

A noticeable build up around the town of Muni. This will be tough. Against the vaunted USSR 5th Tank Guard Tank Corp and 18th Tank Corp.

I only have the 6th Infantry Division and a the 2nd Parachute Division of Fallschirmjager's to move south and try to take that town. The enemy is building up considerable forces here and this is way south of where my main attack is taking place



In the middle of the battlefield, I am going to make a bold dash toward Bek Bulasch with the 5 SS Viking Division. The town is virtually open and if the 6th Infantry and the 2nd parachute can hold south I may be able to cut the Russian forces in two. The 5th SS Panzer is a strong group of units, some with a 30 attack strength. Lets see what happens. I will bypass the simple local Russian security force and make for the town to grab extra victory points.



Sunday, January 9, 2011

Combat Mission Shock Force: Marines - A Day at the Beach

I hadn't played this game in a while, so I fired it up to check out the newer 1.31 patch, reinstalled my mods and then tried just any old mission I wanted. I did all this without reading the manual to see how intuitive it was. I did ok I guess. On the scrub level I won the mission but I lost too many men in my opinion. It was only halfway through when I finally remembered to use spotters and how to call in support. Oddly enough I got hooked on the game all over again but even on my high end system I needed to turn the shadows off later and reduce a few graphic options.

Mods are installed by creating a new folder under the DATA folder called "Z" and dropping all the .BRZ files into it. Combat Mission loads these when the game starts. Easy as that. No more unzipping of .bmp files and checking what you did or did not overwrite. I went on to pick up the NATO expansion. What the heck.

Some of the MOD sites I use:

http://cmsfmods.heroku.com

http://petzi-fr.bplaced.net/CMx2Mods

The new patch has the following included:

  • Soldiers receive reduced blast protection when an armored vehicle is between them and a very large explosion.

  • Firing sound changed for C14, C15, L115A3, AWSMF, G22 sniper rifles.

  • Corrected Syrian and Canadian rank icons.

  • Various TOE updates

  • In the New Game screen, the time displayed for each scenario (e.g. "01:20") refers to the length of the scenario, not the time of day.

  • nVidia light-flashing bug is fixed

  • Computer player is smarter about disembarking passengers from immobilized vehicles.


Stay tuned this week for an oldie but goodie: an actual Korsun Pocket AAR (by SSG).

Here is the YouTube video of my terrible Combat Mission Shock Force gameplay. Watch it in HD mode for better quality.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Steel Panthers WW2 for Windows mini tutorial

I wanted to test FRAPS and my ability to record my use of Windows 7 desktop so I decided that instead of posting a bunch of screenshots talking about Steel Panthers WW2 for Windows (also known as winSPWW2) I would just record what I had learned thus far and post it on YouTube

This is for the Shrapnel Games version of Steel Panthers. You can purchase this game digitally or, like I did, in a snap tight CDROM case with a fully printed manual which includes a pictorial tutorial. The cost is $40. Advantages of the purchased version are higher screen resolutions and wide screen monitor support. The free version is available on their site but limits you to 800x600 resolution.

This tutorial covers simple things like unit interface, artillery plots, moving and loading vehicles. The sound is a bit loud so next time I will be turning off background noises and tuning it up a bit. Originally this was meant to be a test but I was getting into it so it ended up to be about nine minutes.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Total destruction of Iraqi forces

These are two screenshots from the Steel Panthers Main Battle Tank program from Shrapnel Games. Yeah I went ahead and digitally downloaded this one to go with my Steel Panthers WW2. The tutorial for this game is SO much easier than the tutorial for the WW2 version but then again it is 1991 and the Iraqi's are not much of a foe.

The American forces crested the sandy ridge and just turned that valley into a turkey shoot which then littered the area with destroyed T-55's and T-72's. Very satisfying after how badly I am performing in the WW2 tutorial. Great times in this game watching TOW missiles streak across the screen and commanding Apache helicopters. The men on the right? Iraqi troops fleeing the battle.

Now that my SPWW2 full game is here I will be doing some AAR's. I also have to learn Alexandrian Wars at some point. I had to delay until this weekend due to waiting on the shipping and then my birthday.



Thursday, January 6, 2011

Slitherine accepting beta testers for Field of Glory - Legions Triumphant

This just tweeted by Iain over at Slitherine they are accepting beta test applications for the next Field of Glory expansion. Head on over and sign up if you are interested in giving it a go.

http://slitherine.com/beta_test/legionstriumphant_pc

This army pack covers the armies of the Roman Empire and its opponents from 25 BC to 493 AD: From the first Emperor, Augustus, until the final demise of the Western Roman Empire.


Armies

Principate Roman, Dominate Roman, Federate Roman, Kushan or Indo-Skythian, Early German, Ancient British, Early Scots-Irish, Dacian or Carpi, Later Sarmatian, Early Alan, Jewish Revolt, Caledonian, Early Pictish, Sassanid Persian, Early Visigothic or Early Vandal, Palmyran, Early Frankish, Alamanni, Burgundi, Limigantes, Quadi, Rugii, Suebi or Turcilingi, Early Anglo-Saxon, Bavarian, Frisian, Old Saxon or Thuringian, Early Ostrogothic, Herul, Sciri or Taifali, Gepid or Early Lombard, Western Hunnic, Hephthalite Hunnic

Graphics

There are over 200 new battle group graphics and supporting information within the D.A.G. lists.


Battles

12+ new historical battles


Main Features of the Army Pack

Additional features TBD

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

HPS to go digital download OR CD

This just in from the Gladius blog of Ancient Warfare coverage:

from Gladius

I just had this in from Scott Hamilton at HPS, with a request to post it:

All new HPS releases will be available in digital download format (as well as CD).  We will also go back and make the older games available on DD as well.

That's all Gladius has for now, I am sure more details will come over the wire later.

Happy Birthday to myself

Today is my birthday. My age shall remain unknown. Yes I am over 40. No I am not a teenager. Anyway as a gift to myself my birthday money partially went to some wargaming titles I was missing from my collection. Below is a picture. This blog may be a bit silent today and if it is that is why. Have a good one all.

Combat Mission Battle For Normandy beta AAR

Wargame Reserve Blog has word about more of the Combat Mission Battle for Normandy AAR being posted over on the Battlefront website.

You can check out the US side of the report here http://www.battlefront.com/community/showthread.php?t=94495

The German side of the report here http://www.battlefront.com/community/showthread.php?t=94496

There are screenshots and a good first look at what the revamped Combat Mission will bring us after 10 long years.

This is as exciting as Diablo 3!

Image
Two of our beta testers, Elvis and JonS, have just launched a series of After Action Reports from an ongoing head-to-head battle they're playing with a beta version of Combat Mission Battle for Normandy. The AAR provides the viewpoints of each players, who are not reading each other's postings, in this ongoing (fictional) battle to secure a key crossroads near  la Campagne.
Don't miss this exciting series as it is being updated to its conclusion in the next days.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Panzer Corp site released by Slitherine

Slitherine has released a website for the upcoming Panzer Corp game they are working on which is a spiritual successor to Panzer General. You can see the new site here: http://panzer-corps.com

Also make sure you check out the first Developer Diary on the game that they have posted here:

http://panzer-corps.com/2010/12/the-first-issue-of-panzer-corps-development-diary
3. Strong RPG component.

A big part of fun in RPG games is to bring up your characters, see them growing stronger and capable of doing things which they could not even dream about in the beginning. Panzer Corps incorporates this element too, especially in campaign mode. Your units go from one battle to another, gaining experience, awards and aces in the process, and become valuable tools for turning the course of a difficult battle in your favor. Each unit has a detailed statistics and battle history associated with it, so you can always see what battles it participated in, and what achievements it has in its record.

Included is a trailer and some details on the game (P.S. Slitherine: While CGI trailers are cool us wargaming grognards want to see in game footage of gameplay!):

The game is absolutely huge:

  • 400 unit types, divided into 19 unit classes with 20 detailed parameters to indentify units abilities, 17 terrain types affecting gameplay in various way. Panzer Corps will celebrate the glory days of strategy gaming with the aim of attracting new players to the genre;

  • Campaign: all 26 scenarios are combined into a large campaign tree with several entry points at various stages of the war. Depending on the outcome of each battle (decisive victory, marginal victory or defeat), the player will be faced with different challenges and a progress along different parts of the campaign tree;

  • Nations: all major and many minor nations represented: Germany, Italy, Poland, France, Great Britain, USA, USSR, Norway, Belgium, Netherlands, Albania, Romania, Greece and more.

  • Core units that travel with you throughout the campaign gaining experience and that can be upgraded as new weapon technologies become available.


Battle of Yorktown in miniature

You have to see this to believe it. Simply incredible.

http://ilovewargameing.21.forumer.com/viewtopic.php?t=3129

I am a former Warhammer 40K and Flames of War player (quit due to lack of opponents in my area) so this really caught my eye. Great stuff.

Pride of Nations Developer Diary

Lately the postings in the Pride of Nations forum have been picking up steadily and we have been getting more and more info on AGEOD's turn-based historical strategy game set in the colonial era of the 19th century.

You can see a few alpha screenshots here in this thread:

http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/showthread.php?501964-Info-and-Pictures

Pictured below is a shot from the Boer War:



Also the Developer Diaries are now up to number 7 each one with in depth details on the game and how it will work. Good reading if you are into this sort of thing which I am. After the dismal time I had with Victoria 2 I am rather excited about this one but won't get my hopes too high until I see how it performs in my beta test coming up. I am guessing this will be the most complex AGEOD game to date and in a way I hope that I can actually get my brain to understand the underlying intricacies.

Some of the interesting Developer Diaries include 5 and 7. Number 5 outlines some Order of Battle information while 7 discusses commerce (this is also the latest).

An excerpt from Developer Diary 5:
To that end, we created two databases. One is the Models database, which describes every element that makes up our game units. The other is the Units database, which lists, for every unit, how many elements and in which proportion they are within said unit. For the models, every single regiment that is available has a unique name, as well as dozens of features and characteristics, which we shall detail in another diary. As a result, even if there are hundreds of regiments in a given nation (or a dozen individual ships), each can be seen with their own unique name. The UI has a specific window to show this. At the unit level, the various possibilities are composed of those very same models as well as an extra feature that we have added, called the recruitment (or construction) zone. This ensures that a unit can only be built in the area that it has been assigned to. For instance, troops of the British Army of India cannot appear in the UK or in the Americas; they can only be raised and recruited in the Raj. Similarly, French Black colonial troops shall appear in Africa and nowhere else. But recruitment is not only ethnically specific as it is also restricted to the physical location with other considerations.

winSPWW2 wide screen beta patch released from Shrapnel

Thanks to reader Harry giving me the heads up.

Yesterday afternoon Shrapnel posted a wide screen beta patch for Windows Steel Panthers World War 2 that will allow you to play the game at desktop resolutions. The patch is still in BETA and has been tested on Windows 98, XP and Vista but they still need feedback from Windows 7 users.

The entire bunch of details can be found here:

http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=46875

Monday, January 3, 2011

John Tiller Suggestion Box for 2011

A new blurb on the John Tiller Software site is actually a post from John Tiller himself asking people to input (via a support form on the site) what "games you would most like to see" as they move into the new year.

I myself asked him to do something on the Zulu Wars. I think that would be quite the interesting challenge both for a game engine and the player.

At any rate here is the post as well as a link to the support form:
Both Kharkov '43 and Modern War have been huge successes for us and we are really looking forward to all the new games we want to do this year. I'd like to take an informal survey of the games you would most like to see, so when you get a chance, send a message to Support and let us know what games you are most interested in, either in our existing series or any new ideas you would like to see developed.

http://johntillersoftware.com

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Upcoming this week: Steel Panthers talk and Windows 7

Steel Panthers talk. That's right I am going back and getting into Steel Panthers again this time with the Shrapnel Games winSPWW2 version to get that critical Windows compatibility and higher resolution. Will all be well with the aging title on a newer PC? Perhaps not. Already loading the free version I had many graphical glitches.

Upon loading the screen I was welcome to was the following:



Immediately I thought that I would not be purchasing the old title and I could not get back into it. It takes a bit of digging but this issue is well known on the Shrapnel Forums and a work around has been provided.

Take a look at this thread:

http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=45462

I little application new .CMD program, edited so that it launched SPWW2 and not SPMBT, and I was back under way although still under 800x600 resolution until my boxed copy arrived in the mail:



Keep in mind that there are TWO versions of Steel Panthers. One is a code taken over and developed by Matrix Games for Steel Panthers World at War which includes all the Mega Campaigns in the game that were released a while back.

This thread: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2590391 explains all that

The other version that is being actively worked on and fixed up is the Shrapnel Games version that has been adapted to Windows. This is the main reason I went with this version. I figured if I had it and they were around the support would keep coming in the way of official patches. A wide screen monitor patch is due out soon and the game got many patches this past year:

http://www.shrapnelgames.com

About widescreen play:
Yes, both games will have that option for CD owners when the patches of both games are released in the new year

So while I was gone the world of Steel Panthers got pretty confusing. Remember also that mods for World at War or the Shrapnel Version will NOT work between the two. I think the community has done a great job in keeping both versions alive and well for tons of wargamers all over. I will post more on my foray into the game a little later this week.

For more Steel Panthers links see our page up top labeled WARGAMING SITES.