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• Dear List We ve heard about squares, we ve heard about hexes-- has anyone here tried OTHER grids. I noodled around with triangles as well and Octogons. (The
Message 1 of 8 , Jun 29, 2009
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Dear List

We've heard about squares, we've heard about hexes-- has anyone here tried OTHER grids. I noodled around with triangles as well and Octogons. (The Octogons make little squares on four of the interces) and I am working with them presently in an experiment with pike and shot formations, where the pike blocks are on the octogon and the musketeer "sleeves" on the interces. No real data on how satisfying it is, and I don't know if it will ever amount to anything, but its interesting from the stand point that for any given square "interces" it can be shared by four octogons.

I've also worked on triangles. That's wierd! It works though, but-- it's just wierd and hard to get used to. (It's not as simple as you think of just drawing radii on a normal hexagon). That's what it does but ---

The other thing I am working with is irregular grids. That is, variable sized grids and even irregular sized grids. This really turns the game into an area move game, which is still OK as a game, but it's not what you're used to!

By the way, one of the the things I am working on for my naval game is an ungridded gridded system.

How the system works is this. I do my naval gaming in WWII and prewar. The board for the game is a 6 x 9 table top ruled off into six squares, each square 3 x 3 ft. These are squadron boxes. You can have your ship in the squadron boxes in whatever formation your heart desires. I use 1:1200 ship models. All the ships of one side must be in the squadron boxes on one side of the table, all the ships of the other are on the other side.

Then the move begins again, the player ascribes a course heading and speed for each squadron. If he has damaged ships in the squadron he must slow to keep up with the damaged ships, or he can break the ship off to try and limp away under a new heading etc. The same way, destroyers can race out to make a torpedo attack etc., as a second squadron etc. Squardons can combine etc. The heading is shown by actually turning the ship models to that heading and taking up a new formation, laying down smoke etc., blah blah blah. That is, all the stuff you do in an actual game but with more space to do it in. The vast expanses of table top space between opposing squadrons banished to the computer.

This works well too with aircraft carriers and air strikes.

Nemopholist
• ... You might want to have a look at Crossfire . That s a World War 2 tactical game by Arty Conliffe, which features no turns and no rulers. All movement and
Message 1 of 8 , Jun 29, 2009
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On Mon, Jun 29, 2009 at 4:01 PM, nemopholist<sigurd@...> wrote:
> Dear List
>
> We've heard about squares, we've heard about hexes-- has anyone here tried OTHER grids.  I noodled around with triangles as well and Octogons. (The Octogons make little squares on four of the interces) and I am working with them presently in an experiment with pike and shot formations, where the pike blocks are on the octogon and the musketeer "sleeves" on the interces.  No real data on how satisfying it is, and I don't know if it will ever amount to anything, but its interesting from the stand point that for any given square "interces" it can be shared by four octogons.
>
> I've also worked on triangles. That's wierd!  It works though, but-- it's just wierd and hard to get used to.  (It's not as simple as you think of just drawing radii on a normal hexagon). That's what it does but ---
>
> The other thing I am working with is irregular grids. That is, variable sized grids and even irregular sized grids. This really turns the game into an area move game, which is still OK as a game, but it's not what you're used to!

You might want to have a look at 'Crossfire'. That's a World War 2
tactical game by Arty Conliffe, which features no turns and no rulers.
All movement and sight lines are regulated by terrain features - so
really it's an area movement game.
And you can keep moving and firing as long as you want until you lose
by shooting at you with effect.

Peter Pig also used an interesting variant on the grid system for
their 'Pieces of Eight' pirate game.
The ships move on a hex grid, but they carry it around with them - you
move by placing big hexes in front of your ships and then moving using
the hexes, but there's no grid on the table.
• Hi there, I once (maybe 20+ years ago) did a time and motion style study into competition games to see where the time went, not to the same detail as yours. I
Message 1 of 8 , Jun 29, 2009
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Hi there,

I once (maybe 20+ years ago) did a time and motion style study into competition games to see where the time went, not to the same detail as yours.

I wanted to know how long it took players to set terain, how long to do orders, how long to deploy figs, how many games turns did they crank out.

The information is long lost.

Many players think that moving figs takes up game time, where decission making exhausts much more. Interstingly I was playing a game at a friends place when his mate called by and stuck his head in to look.

This chap had no idea about wargaming but instantly commented that decission making must take time. Then again he was an executive at a Sydney commercial radio station, so he knew _exactly_ how much 15 seconds would cost you in a cut-throat market.

More recently I have run DBM competitions using timed moves, I have always been bemused that many wargame rules go to great lengths to set up an equitible game (army points systems etc) but do nothing to portion out playing time.

My recent interest in grid games has been prompted partly by my thinking about why wargames are traditionally so cumbersome (with some honourable exceptions).

There are huge barriers to entry, cost, complexity, time to build armies, time to play games, months to learn rules.

My view is that rules should be built from the first principle of time allowed for them. Decide that you are building a 1-2-3-4 hour game and work from there.

Playing on a grid seems an obvious way to speed up many aspects of play.

Regards

David B

--- In grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com, "nemopholist" <sigurd@...> wrote:
>
> Dear Dave
>
> I used the grids for the same thing. I had become dissatisfied with the rules I was using and decided to write my own, and I saw the problem was in the sequencing and "what happens when" part, and I went to a grid because I could just drop all of that complication over the side till I sorted out the main problem.
>
> How this began was one day I was at a game where I was commanding a part of the army that was lined up on the flank of the main army- "guarding against an enemy flanking movement that would come on in a later turn."
>
> Literal translation- "You are going to sit here for eight hours and do absolutely nothing because we will run out of game time LONG before the turn comes that the enemy roops will enter on."
>
> So as I didn't have ANYTHING to do, rather than putter around the guys workroom or pick up a bookand read it, I deceided to IE the game. IE means "industrial engineer" which I had done in a previous life and I had a wristwatch which had a stop watch in it, so I sa there all game analyzing the game as to what was "productive" time, what was "downtime" etc., just like an industrial engineer would analyize a production line or a process for efficiency.
>
> Well at the end of the game everyone was congratulating themselves on what a great game it was. The conversation went like this.
>
> Others.: Wow! That was a great game!
>
> Nemopholsit: It sucked!
>
> Others: Well yeah- I realize we ran out of time before you got to do anything but...
>
> Nemopholist: No, it sucked because you guys wasted so much time.
>
> Others : Huh?
>
> Nemopholist: (explained the whole Ie thing). I found that the "productive time" the time you were actually DOING something you wanted to- move troos, roll die, talk about the game, debate strategy, make decisions was only 11%!!! of the total time. Non productive time was Looking at a chart 12% Reading and re-reading rules 9% arguing about rules 22%, measuring and fiddling with formations %18 Standing around watching while someone else does something 20% -- and miscellaneous things (like bullshitting about what the next period you are going to do, or what type of pizza to order 8%. So you utilized only 11% of the time for what you came her for. If this was a production line we all would have been fired four hours ago!
>
> Well it was an eye-opener, even for me!
>
> So the next week I started and to simply tear out a lot of the problems I went to a square grid. The reason was that measurement and formations and all that folderol was simply dumped in the garbage and we could concentrate on honing the sequence of action and work on the parameters of the game (what we wanted to model). That helped because we had a point where we knew when to stop.
>
> Our aim was to have a game where the players felt like generals, that is they dealt with the issues commanding generals did and answered the challenges (and had a range of action) like they did. This meant that we only had to use the most rudimentary facing and formation rules. In fact we did away with them almost entirely, and such folderol as mounting and dismounting, limbering and unlimbering never came back out of the garbage heap.
>
> Once we had the "feel" and the sequence of what happens when set, we could take stuff back from the garbage heap and put it back in (including measuring and breaking the grid, and seeing how it worked and if it improved the game or did not. In some games we went back to a measuring system (but a very limited and rudimentary one) and some we tossed it out alltogether because we found that it really didn't add anything.
>
> The advantage to that is you get the big broad brush strokes down first and set before you add the chrome.
>
> Now I go to grids all the time as a first step to quickly get past the minutia.
>
> One other thing. If I read your post right, you've discovered the "notional" idea of war games. "Notional" as opposed to "notational" means that even if the terrain is not gridded, the grid underlyaing the terrian gives you the general idea of alignment within the terrain so you can make judgements on a grid basis even if you do not have a grid. This is a very powerful but subtle idea. It goes to the property of games that depends on a relationship between the troop and the terrain it is on and more between the troop and the presence of enemy troops. Consider
>
> A unit on the table top can be in a given formation or state or grid.
>
> From the standpoint of the game this can be purely "notional" as stated and it is unimportant UNTIL there is an enemy unit on the field, and within a distance that it can have an effect on the unit within the next time period. If there is no enemy unit on the field, or it cannot reach the unit in question within the next turn or time period, the "notional" value of the unit in question is really unimportant. Only in the immediate presence of the enemy unit does this "notion" have any effect, and likewise the same with the enemy so the comparing of the two "notional" ideas is really where the game is. That is, in a reality in the two players mind of which the table top is only the general "notional" expression of the two minds and the result of the resolution of conflict between the two.
>
> What this means in more specific terms is the physical reality of the table becomes less important and hence the minor variations and random infelicities of the game become less critical.
>
> Play with it a while and you will see how many stupid rules you can drop from the game that just crowd it.
>
> Nemopholist
>
• Crossfire is a good system (even if I have never played him, but only studied) but it is not meat and not fish. For the movements and the ranges it uses the
Message 1 of 8 , Jul 1, 2009
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Crossfire is a good system (even if I have never played him, but only studied) but it is not meat and not fish.

For the movements and the ranges it uses the areas, but continuous to the facing of the miniatures and the line along which the unities stir to be important!

For the naval system, I think that is very important not to bump the table...

Fabio G. Farneti

Da: grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com [mailto:grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com] Per conto di Steve Burt
Inviato: lunedì 29 giugno 2009 17.30
A: grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com
Oggetto: Re: [grid_based_wargames] Gridz Grinders

On Mon, Jun 29, 2009 at 4:01 PM, nemopholist<sigurd@eclipse. net> wrote:

> Dear List
>
> We've heard about squares, we've heard about hexes-- has anyone here tried
OTHER grids.  I noodled around with triangles as well and Octogons. (The Octogons make little squares on four of the interces) and I am working with them presently in an experiment with pike and shot formations, where the pike blocks are on the octogon and the musketeer "sleeves" on the interces.  No real data on how satisfying it is, and I don't know if it will ever amount to anything, but its interesting from the stand point that for any given square "interces" it can be shared by four octogons.
>
> I've also worked on triangles. That's wierd!  It works though, but--
it's just wierd and hard to get used to.  (It's not as simple as you think of just drawing radii on a normal hexagon). That's what it does but ---
>
> The other thing I am working with is irregular grids. That is, variable
sized grids and even irregular sized grids. This really turns the game into an area move game, which is still OK as a game, but it's not what you're used to!

You might want to have a look at 'Crossfire'. That's a World War 2
tactical game by Arty Conliffe, which features no turns and no rulers.
All movement and sight lines are regulated by terrain features - so
really it's an area movement game.
And you can keep moving and firing as long as you want until you lose
by shooting at you with effect.

Peter Pig also used an interesting variant on the grid system for
their 'Pieces of Eight' pirate game.
The ships move on a hex grid, but they carry it around with them - you
move by placing big hexes in front of your ships and then moving using
the hexes, but there's no grid on the table.

• This is a beautiful discussion. Often in the count of the time necessary to effect a game is not considered the preparation of the battlefield, the creation of
Message 1 of 8 , Jul 1, 2009
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This is a beautiful discussion.

Often in the count of the time necessary to effect a game is not considered the preparation of the battlefield, the creation of the army, sometime the deployment and then should be added also all the rearrange operations after the game.

However these times in reality don't depend on the employed system (metric or area), but from other factors. Of sure however they are hidden times, that may be to have an enormous importance on the game global time.

Fabio G. Farneti

Da: grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com [mailto:grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com] Per conto di artaxerxesiii2003
Inviato: lunedì 29 giugno 2009 23.49
A: grid_based_wargames@yahoogroups.com
Oggetto: [grid_based_wargames] Re: Look of games

Hi there,

I once (maybe 20+ years ago) did a time and motion style study into competition games to see where the time went, not to the same detail as yours.

I wanted to know how long it took players to set terain, how long to do orders, how long to deploy figs, how many games turns did they crank out.

The information is long lost.

Many players think that moving figs takes up game time, where decission making exhausts much more. Interstingly I was playing a game at a friends place when his mate called by and stuck his head in to look.

This chap had no idea about wargaming but instantly commented that decission making must take time. Then again he was an executive at a Sydney commercial radio station, so he knew _exactly_ how much 15 seconds would cost you in a cut-throat market.

More recently I have run DBM competitions using timed moves, I have always been bemused that many wargame rules go to great lengths to set up an equitible game (army points systems etc) but do nothing to portion out playing time.

My recent interest in grid games has been prompted partly by my thinking about why wargames are traditionally so cumbersome (with some honourable exceptions).

There are huge barriers to entry, cost, complexity, time to build armies, time to play games, months to learn rules.

My view is that rules should be built from the first principle of time allowed for them. Decide that you are building a 1-2-3-4 hour game and work from there.

Playing on a grid seems an obvious way to speed up many aspects of play.

Regards

David B

_

• Dear List I m somewhat cheap when it comes to rules. I don t geneally buy them but prefer to watch them at games at Conventions and club meetings. That usually
Message 1 of 8 , Jul 1, 2009
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Dear List

I'm somewhat cheap when it comes to rules. I don't geneally buy them but prefer to watch them at games at Conventions and club meetings. That usually tells me all I need to know about a game. After all, invariably SOMEONE around the table knows what they are doing. I can usually spot the leader and GM. Then I watch them for two or three hours.

Of course-- all the time I'm doing a bit of IE work again, timing how long the turns are how many turns, what the work flow is etc. A few sessions like this gives me all the evaluation I need on rules. Some of my criteria are.

1.in a game of six to eight players are 7 people sitting around waiting for one guy to roll a die? That is, one player cannot take his turn till some other guy has finished his. This is bad because it leads to extreme frustrated impatience followed by dolorous langour and then -- terminal boredom.

GOOD NEWS
2. The "gun" goes off (turn starts) and everyone is doing everything at once. This saves time, gets people involved and is quite exciting.

1. The GM or Umpire does a lot of looking at charts and tables and looking up the rules. This mean they are even too complicated for HIM, the expert to keep in his head. If the Players are doing this then that's really bad news because it means that the game can't run at all swiftly.

GOOD NEWS-
2. People use the rules book as a beer coaster or a pizza plate. This means that they can internalize them quickly,

1. What proportion of the table top is covered in an hour of play. If the table top is 6 ft, and in one hour you cover 1 ft. Then as the average time for playing a game is about 4 hurs, that means your forces will barely come into contact (if the enemy is likewise moving forward as fast as he can). Then the REAL time wasting begins when you have fire and melee combat.

GOOD NEWS-
1. Turn 1 phase 1- action.

BAD NEWS- In the first turn there are three arguments. This is usually a killer for me. Any game that allows arguments, even from argumentative players is not for me.

GOOD NEWS- in the whole game there are no arguments.

These and other items go towards the "feel" of the game. In each step grid games can't help but make it simpler and speed it up. But on the other hand, grid games can be transgressors in each area. Check ASL or Campaign in North Africa (true boardgames-- but) -- highly illustrative of what can go wrong with grid games.

The tendency is all too often to reload enormous complication into a grid based game after you have dumped out a lot of the complicationf from measurement.

Nemopholist.
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