Fri, 4 May 2012
In the next episode of Guns,Dice, Butter, Episode IV, we will focus on the epic Victory Games title Vietnam 1965 - 1975 and Shenadoah Studio.
Conversations with Nick Karp, designer of Vietnam, and now CFO of Shenandoah Studio http://www.shenandoah-studio.com/ , the gameco that will be bringing us wargames (among other games) to the iPad, and gamer Nels Thompson, who is on a lark to conquer Vietnam. Nick will also discuss Shenandoah's first game, Battle of the Bulge, which also currently has a Kickstarter project underway.Nick has a story regarding the playtesting of The Campaign for North Africa which alone makes the episode worth the price of admission.
I expect to post the episode by mid May.
Category:Episode Preview -- posted at: 3:51pm CDT
Tue, 24 April 2012
I mentioned a number of items on Episode 3; thought I would provide the links to those items below.
Additionally, I've just posted a listener poll on episode 3; would be great if you could take a few minutes to answer the ten questions to help guide our dialogue with members of the wargamer tribe.
We'll pass 3,500 downloads today; THANK YOU for your support.
Links to items mentioned on the podcast:
Episode 3 listener poll:
Wargamer’s Guide to Wargaming Geeklists:
Jeff Davis as a Strategist thread…outstanding!
Card Driven Wargame (CDW) evolution:
Favorite/Least favorite wargamers’ armies:
Strategic level wargames of the American Revolutionary War:
Mark vR's cool card replacements for the chits for The American Revolution: Decision in North America
The wargame that pulled me into the hobby:
New to wargaming? One wargamers journey:
The company bringing wargames (and other games) to the iPad and other new devices:
...and last, but not least, Jeff Paull's JerkCon! information:
...and an ad for JerkCon!
...and an ad for JerkCon!
Category:Plumbing -- posted at: 11:17pm CDT
Mon, 23 April 2012
Third Episode of Guns, Dice, Butter.
0:0 Introduction with Herr Dr: Feedback, review of listener survey on Boardgamegeek.com, preview of episode
0:31 Conversation with Andrew Mulholland, author of “Keeping the Colonies Royal”, a review of strategic level boardgames on the American Revolutionary War, 2008, ATO, issue 23.
0:50 Panel discussion with Ed Wimble, game designer and owner of Clash of Arms, Mark Herman, game designer extraordinaire and Andrew Mulholland.
2:08 Conversation with renowned gamer and host of Jerkcon, Jeff Paull
2:33 Wrap up with Herr Dr: news, preview of episode 4 and shout outs.
For background information on games of the ARW and links to information provided in the podcast, see www.gunsdicebutter.com
Provide feedback by participating in Episode 3 survey on Boardgamegeek.com (to be posted soon)
Thu, 19 April 2012
I've kept a chart of Card Driven Wargames (CDWs) up to date the last few years. By CDWs, I mean those games that trace lineage to either We the People or Parths of Glory. I updated that chart today. The link to it is at the bottom of this post.
Paths of Glory brought me back into the hobby. Shortly after that, while attending WBC, I stumbled across Mark Herman and his game For the People...and I was firmly hooked on wargaming and WBC again. During WBC 2002, I met a few players that had a similar strong interest in CDWs. Three of us (Rob Hassard, Keith Wixson and myself) lamented over some BBQ and beer that WBC was only held once a year (August) and wondered whether or not we could have a mini-WBC in dead middle of winter just for the play of CDWs and consumption of BBQ (Andy Nelson's, of course).
I then discussed with Stuart Tucker; long time GM of the game Hannibal and board member of WBC at the time (Stuart is blueblood Avalon Hill). Soon, Stuart and I approached Don Greenwood, who tossed his support behind the idea and Winter Activation Meeting (WAM) was born (Jan 2003). Stuart and I also were able to enlist Don's support for the pre-cons at WBC that permitted play of the longer wargame tourneys, begining with Paths of Glory and Hannibal, while allowing wargamers to still get their entire fill of WBC during the week.
So, our bar talk eventually paid off: an expanded venue for the games we love to play within the big tent called WBC: http://www.boardgamers.org/
Since then, we've held 10 WAMs and quite a few pre-cons. Great times, always. Keith Wixson and Teri Coleman now lead that mini-con and tribe. We are all looking forward to WAM XI in Jan 2013. The most recent WAM report is here:
... and there is a WAM discussion board on consimworld.com (in the Conventions folder).
We'll be discussing CDWs often on Guns, Dice, Butter and having Mark Herman on that Episode 1 was a great way to kickoff the podcast.
One other point regarding CDWs: they would be great on the iPad and similar devices. One reason for the Second Golden Age of Wargaming are CDWs; in that they get played A LOT on line using tools like Vassal and Cyberboard (among others) and the online site ACTS and Wargameroom.com
The play of cards on a iPad is a natural and would be a great way to pull in new gamers to the hobby. Think about it: we spend most of our time looking at our "hand of cards" (easily viewed on a iPad). And, the art on the cards helps the immersion experience. I can't think of a better way to expand the hobby; hopefully, someone or some company will get our CDWs (and new ones developed to maximize those devices) on the new devices sooner than later.
Anyways, the link to the CDW Evolution chart:
Category:Data -- posted at: 10:53pm CDT
Tue, 17 April 2012
On our next episode of Guns, Dice, Butter, we'll have a panel discussion with Mark Herman, Ed Wimble and Andrew Mulholland regarding strategic level wargames of the American Revolutionary War (ARW). In 2008, Mr.Mulholand wrote an excellent article for ATO vol VI Nr 3 (issue 23: Guerra a Muerte) analyzing these games. We thought it would be productive to discuss the main dynamics of the ARW, how these games model these dynamics and offer some conclusions...and, of course, the call for more titles on the conflict.
In preperation for that episode, we utilized a couple of spreadsheets (building on work Andrew had completed in 2008):
...and here is a related list of the games on BGG (Boardgamegeek.com)
The episode will also contain a discussion with one other friend in wargame tribe and the usual bits and bobs of news and what not. I anticipate posting the episdoe by the end of the month.
Category:Episode Preview -- posted at: 12:48pm CDT
Mon, 9 April 2012
Passed 2,500 downloads of the show this Easter weekend: Thank you for your support.
Have about 50 responses for the survey I placed on BGG this weekend.
Here are some of the results:
100%!: 100% of listeners reported that they plan to listen to future episodes; this feedback was the type of good news needed to lift my spirits after the horrendous 0-3 start the Beloved Minnesota Twins had to kick off the 2012 baseball season.
Episode Quality: Scale: 1=poor, 5=great
Episode 1: Audio 2.2, Interviews 4.1 and Other Content 3.9. Episode 2: Audio 2.9, Interviews 4.1 and Other Content 4.0
Comment: Well, we improved the audio quality of the show after better understanding the Garage Band software. We will continue to strive to improve the audio quality. Very happy that the listeners rated the quality of content high in both episodes.
Time in Hobby: About a 1/3 of listeners have been in the hobby less than 10 years;
Comment: I think that is probably reflective of the hobby in general. Will try work something into each episode for newer members of the hobby.
Scale: Favorite scale for listeners: About 1/3 tactical hex, 1/5 Op/Strategic hex and 1/5 CDWs (Card Driven Wargames)...with the rest falling into other/no favorite.
Comment: I play a mix of CDWs and Op/Strategic hex. Will see if I can round up a tactical hex gamer from time to time.
Purchasing Power: About 1/5 of listeners purchase 1 to 4 wargames a year, 1/2 five to nine and 1/4 more than 10 games.
Podcast impact on play and $: About 2/3 of listeners report that GDB had some or significant impact on what wargames they will play or purchase.
Comment: Will try to always work in a segment of Uncontrollable Urge: those games that must be purchased or played NOW!
Top Content Requests: game reviews, Designer interviews, game strategy/tactics, panels, developer interviews, hobby news and game recommendations.
Where? About 2/3 of listeners heard about Guns, Dice, Butter on BGG; 1/3 on Consim.
Comment: Would be good to expand the audience to reach wargamers that hang out in other online spaces. Drop me a line to identify other online places where wargamers hang.
Favorite period: WWII (1/3), followed by ACW (1/10)
Favorite armies: Top 3: Rome, WWII USA and WWII Germans. Also receiving high mention: WWII Russians, WWII Brits, ACW blue bellies, NAP Brits, the Crusaders, Ancient Greece and Macedon. Least favorite: ZULUs! Followed by NAP Prussians (Blucher is not pleased).
Comment: I did some analysis on this subject on BGG a few years ago – link to it here:
Regular fans of other podcasts: Point2point 2/3, Noise before Defeat ½, Contact with the Enemy – Half Squads (ASL) – Hex Encounter – Dice Tower – Rusted Dice and I’ve Been Diced all listened to by about 1/3 of listeners
Comment: Great to see other podcasts serving the wargaming tribe; three sprouted up in the last month.
Category:Plumbing -- posted at: 9:31am CDT
Fri, 6 April 2012
One item I discussed on the Episode 2 was a series of posts on BGG with designer Harry Rowland. They occurred in December 2011 when Mr.Rowland was selected as the featured wargame designer of the month. I've always been a BIG fan of Mr.Rowland's work: Empire in Arms, World in Flames, Days of Decision, etc.
I posed the following question to Mr.Rowland:
Link to Mr.Rowland's response:
And a link to forum where Mr.Rowland entertained and responded to a long series of questions from wargamers on BGG:
Category:Data -- posted at: 10:52am CDT
Fri, 6 April 2012
Ed Wimble and I refered to a number of books on Episode 2. Following is that list:
Logistics and the Failure of the British Army in America by R. Arthur Bowler
The Southern Strategy by David Wilson
The War for America by Piers Mackesy
The Long Fuse: How England Lost the American Colonies 1760-1785 by Don Cook
The Frontier War for American Independence by William R. Nester
I've read all but Mr.Wilson's book and would highly recommend the whole lot: they really gave me a different perspective on the conflict. I will be getting a copy of Mr.Wilson's book very shortly.
I also referred to a forum that where Wilson and Wimble hold court that I think is about the best thing on the net regarding the American Revolutionary War (Art of War: David K. Wilson - in the Blog Central section of consimworld.com). A link here:
Category:general -- posted at: 9:08am CDT
Fri, 6 April 2012
Those of you that know me from BGG (Boardgamegeek.com), know that I periodically conduct analysis of the BGG data regarding wargames. Consequently, I've now uploaded (or linked to) some of that work to this website.
The first file contains my analysis of wargames from 1958-2008. This work was initated when I began to wonder how wargames had evolved: by subject type, mechanic, etc.
BGG is a GREAT resource for the hobby, so, I utilized the data there to compile a short analytical piece. It is located on a few places on the net (grognard and wargamer), but, thought I would also place it on this website.
The link is here:
Finally, I've upload one chart as a sample of many contained in my gallery on BGG. The chart is of wargames by complexity (game weight) vs historical plausibility (BGG survey response) and sized by the reported number of owners (as reported on BGG).
Category:Data -- posted at: 8:34am CDT
Fri, 6 April 2012
Thank you for the feedback I've been receiving.
I've posted a short survey for listeners to complete that will help us better tailor content to what you want to hear on Guns, Dice, Butter.
If you have a few minutes, please take time to complete at:
Category:Plumbing -- posted at: 8:09am CDT