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new user, programmed scenarios

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  • perni
    Hi, New subscriber here, from Sweden. Found my way here from a thread on solitaire games on BGG yesterday (thanks Ben!). I have played Ambush! for 15+ years.
    Message 1 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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      Hi,

      New subscriber here, from Sweden. Found my way here from a thread on
      solitaire games on BGG yesterday (thanks Ben!).

      I have played Ambush! for 15+ years. For about 10 years it was the
      only board wargame I played (always coop with my brother controlling
      soldiers B, D, F and H). I am impressed by how alive those cardboard
      enemies in Ambush! can be, and the way the game creates complex
      stories in a hex-and-counter wargame.

      Other solitaire boardgames I have bought or read about in the last few
      years, since getting back into ftf wargames, turned out to be mostly
      about fighting randomly generated enemies controlled by simple tables
      and dice. Sold my copy of SASL after a few attempts to play it. Other
      similar games lies around unplayed. I did enjoy a few small games,
      more like puzzles, like Minden Game's 1914 game.

      Are there any other board/miniature wargames outside of the Ambush!
      series that have "programmed scenarios"?

      --
      /Pelle
    • HTMG
      Programmed Wargames Scenarios by Charles Grant is a book of just that. Very good. Can be used for ancients, horse and musket, or modern. Most scenarios can be
      Message 2 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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        Programmed Wargames Scenarios by Charles Grant is a book of just that.

        Very good. Can be used for ancients, horse and musket, or modern.

        Most scenarios can be played as either side, or on complete auto pilot with
        the "player" just moving the troops.

        Not as clear cut as Ambush of course, being a miniatures game, still lots of
        replay value. There are even a couple of campaign games.

        Published by Wargames Research Group.

        Hope that helps!

        Bob





        > Hi,
        >
        > New subscriber here, from Sweden. Found my way here from a thread on
        > solitaire games on BGG yesterday (thanks Ben!).
        >
        >
      • Bob George
        ... Could someone post a quick summary of what exactly a programmed scenario is? I ve been playing Nuts! by Two Hour Wargames, and it includes a number of
        Message 3 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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          On 11/1/07, HTMG <raminad9@...> wrote:
          >
          > Programmed Wargames Scenarios by Charles Grant is a book of just that.


          Could someone post a quick summary of what exactly a "programmed scenario"
          is?

          I've been playing Nuts! by Two Hour Wargames, and it includes a number of
          scenarios which play well solo. There are general guidelines for the solo
          opposition, but nothing rigid. I take it a programmed scenario involves the
          other side following a more defined sequence of orders?

          Thanks,

          - Bob


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • HTMG
          Hey Bob, Grant s book lays out a situation, Crossing a River, might be one, Holding a Ridgeline might be another. Next you decide which side you want to play,
          Message 4 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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            Hey Bob,

            Grant's book lays out a situation, Crossing a River, might be one, Holding a
            Ridgeline might be another.

            Next you decide which side you want to play, Red or Blue.

            Then you consult a list of OoB's, and usually randomly select one.

            Next you consult the map. Each map is in three sections and you may or may
            not know the real layout of the terrain as you form your plans.

            Next you write out your plan of battle, and deploy your troops.

            When you start the game, the rules provide for an enemy OoB also drawn at
            random, and tells you what the enemy plan of battle is step by step.

            The modern scenarios are geared to anything from a weak company to a
            battalion or two, combined arms teams. You have to do some rescaling to use
            NUTS!.

            Hope that helps.
            Bob


            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "Bob George" <bobstro@...>
            To: <SoloWarGame@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Thursday, November 01, 2007 10:19 AM
            Subject: Re: [SoloWarGame] new user, programmed scenarios


            > On 11/1/07, HTMG <raminad9@...> wrote:
            > >
            > > Programmed Wargames Scenarios by Charles Grant is a book of just that.
            >
            >
            > Could someone post a quick summary of what exactly a "programmed scenario"
            > is?
            >
            > I've been playing Nuts! by Two Hour Wargames, and it includes a number of
            > scenarios which play well solo. There are general guidelines for the solo
            > opposition, but nothing rigid. I take it a programmed scenario involves
            > the
            > other side following a more defined sequence of orders?
            >
            > Thanks,
            >
            > - Bob
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
            >
            >
            > Community email addresses:
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            >
          • Pelle Nilsson
            ... I m not sure I used the best possible term. I was referring to the type of solitaire play you get in Ambush! and the other games in that series from
            Message 5 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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              "Bob George" <bobstro@...> writes:

              > Could someone post a quick summary of what exactly a "programmed scenario"
              > is?
              >
              > I've been playing Nuts! by Two Hour Wargames, and it includes a number of
              > scenarios which play well solo. There are general guidelines for the solo
              > opposition, but nothing rigid. I take it a programmed scenario involves the
              > other side following a more defined sequence of orders?

              I'm not sure I used the best possible term. I was referring to the
              type of solitaire play you get in Ambush! and the other games in that
              series from Victory Games, where the enemy actions are preprogrammed
              in detail, using lookup-tables ("mission cards") and a booklet of
              paragraphs. The exact hexes the enemies will move to are designed into
              each mission, sometimes with branches (ie "if any US soldiers visible,
              enter V1 otherwise enter V2", or randomly picking one of a few
              possible hexes), and when to fire weapons and at what (ie the classic
              "crouch, then fire primary weapon at closest target; fall prone after
              fire if free stance change available", from memory). Nothing is left
              to the player to decide.

              And thanks HTMG/Bob for suggesting that book. I'm not really into
              miniatures but it would be interesting to know more about the
              mechanics he uses. As I have only seen the Ambush! system (and the
              slightly modified version used in Open Fire) it would be fun to
              compare it to other solutions.

              /Pelle
            • HTMG
              Bob, Look at the Two Hour Wargames overflow yahoo group, or the THW website. When we put NUTS! together I wrote some rules for running NPC s on the offensive.
              Message 6 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                Bob,

                Look at the Two Hour Wargames overflow yahoo group, or the THW website.

                When we put NUTS! together I wrote some rules for running NPC's on the
                offensive. They didn't make it into the print version, but are in the files
                section of one of those places.

                Bob
              • Bob George
                ... Ah, OK. I take it preparing the cards is a good bit of work, and each set is only applicable to one specific scenario? Are they locked to a specific force
                Message 7 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                  On 11/1/07, Pelle Nilsson <perni@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > [...] I was referring to the
                  > type of solitaire play you get in Ambush! and the other games in that
                  > series from Victory Games, where the enemy actions are preprogrammed
                  > in detail, using lookup-tables ("mission cards") and a booklet of
                  > paragraphs. The exact hexes the enemies will move to are designed into
                  > each mission, sometimes with branches (ie "if any US soldiers visible,
                  > enter V1 otherwise enter V2", or randomly picking one of a few
                  > possible hexes), and when to fire weapons and at what (ie the classic
                  > "crouch, then fire primary weapon at closest target; fall prone after
                  > fire if free stance change available", from memory). Nothing is left
                  > to the player to decide.


                  Ah, OK. I take it preparing the cards is a good bit of work, and each set is
                  only applicable to one specific scenario? Are they locked to a specific
                  force composition and map?

                  I've been thinking along similar lines, but trying to figure out how Mythic
                  GME might be used to replace the need for all that advanced work, hoping to
                  have some "surprises" from time to time. Using a "pure" Mythic approach, I'm
                  concerned things might get a bit too random, and wind up more akin to
                  rolling random actions for the automated opponent.

                  I am thinking along the lines of an initial set of orders (e.g. "Defend
                  position") determined by a card draw or dice roll, with a table of major
                  events (e.g. "Anti-tank gun destroyed") and corresponding Mythic questions (
                  e.g. "Do the enemy troops fall back?") associated with those orders. So the
                  table of questions would be loosely linked to the initial orders, providing
                  a more structured set of reactions.


                  > And thanks HTMG/Bob for suggesting that book. I'm not really into
                  > miniatures but it would be interesting to know more about the
                  > mechanics he uses. As I have only seen the Ambush! system (and the
                  > slightly modified version used in Open Fire) it would be fun to
                  > compare it to other solutions.


                  Thanks to everyone from me as well. After giving up on wargaming some 25
                  years ago, and a few fruitless attempts to get info since then, I've found
                  more out in the last 3 months on these lists than all of my previous
                  efforts. I rue the missed opportunities I've had over the years to get some
                  good games in!

                  I also very interested in comparing different game mechanisms. I'm tracking
                  eBay for a copy of Ambush!, B-17 Queen of the Skies, Patton's Finest and
                  other solo game classics.

                  - Bob


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Bob George
                  ... Ah yes, I have downloaded your NPC Offensives and the D-Day Event Table, and they re fantastic. If I recall correctly, NPC Offensives gives general orders
                  Message 8 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                    On 11/1/07, HTMG <raminad9@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > [...] Look at the Two Hour Wargames overflow yahoo group, or the THW
                    > website.
                    >
                    > When we put NUTS! together I wrote some rules for running NPC's on the
                    > offensive. They didn't make it into the print version, but are in the
                    > files
                    > section of one of those places.


                    Ah yes, I have downloaded your NPC Offensives and the D-Day Event Table, and
                    they're fantastic. If I recall correctly, NPC Offensives gives general
                    orders for each enemy unit as it activates, and D-Day provides some good
                    move-by-move changes to the enemy's situation. Those are very helpful for
                    the WHO and the WHAT (are they doing) questions. I'm already gleaning some
                    great ideas from those. (And thanks for those, by the way. They're really
                    enhancing my Nuts experience.)

                    My problem is the "god's eye" view that I have as a solo player. Using my
                    example of an anti-tank gun ambushing along a town road:

                    1. As the ambushing player, I want to wait for a suitable armored target to
                    appear before giving away my position.

                    2. As the ambushed player, I am not supposed to know about the gun's
                    position... but I DO.

                    So I'd be looking for a solution that takes the level of orders down just a
                    notch, possibly varying according to unit status and leadership.
                    My problem is that I know too much, but I don't want to define a rigid
                    sequence of events, or count on my imaginary opponent either behaving as I
                    would or too predictably.

                    I suppose a set of "guiding principles" could go along with your orders. So
                    I could attach some general guidelines to each of your AXIS OF ATTACK
                    results. e.g. If mission orders are ATTACK, and the AXIS OF ATTACK result
                    is 1 = Move directly across table towards, opposite edge, then include a
                    table of things like: "If infantry encountered, do X. If armor encountered,
                    do Y." X & Y might vary if the mission orders were DEFEND or RECONNOITRE
                    instead. I can see something like different guidelines being used depending
                    on the troop type, for example.

                    This may be old news. As I said, I've only been getting into all this
                    recently, so apologies for playing Captain Obvious!

                    - Bob


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • HTMG
                    You could take the contact table idea and just draw a card ala reinforcements to see what is there when you find it. So that hedge row may hide nothing, an
                    Message 9 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                      You could take the contact table idea and just draw a card ala
                      reinforcements to see what is there when you find it. So that hedge row may
                      hide nothing, an infantry section, tank or atg. You'll find out what is
                      there when you scout it.

                      Bob


                      ----- scenarios


                      > On 11/1/07, HTMG <raminad9@...> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > [...] Look at the Two Hour Wargames overflow yahoo group, or the THW
                      > > website.
                      > >
                      > > When we put NUTS! together I wrote some rules for running NPC's on the
                      > > offensive. They didn't make it into the print version, but are in the
                      > > files
                      > > section of one of those places.
                      >
                      >
                      > Ah yes, I have downloaded your NPC Offensives and the D-Day Event Table,
                      > and
                      > they're fantastic. If I recall correctly, NPC Offensives gives general
                      > orders for each enemy unit as it activates, and D-Day provides some good
                      > move-by-move changes to the enemy's situation. Those are very helpful for
                      > the WHO and the WHAT (are they doing) questions. I'm already gleaning some
                      > great ideas from those. (And thanks for those, by the way. They're really
                      > enhancing my Nuts experience.)
                      >
                      > My problem is the "god's eye" view that I have as a solo player. Using my
                      > example of an anti-tank gun ambushing along a town road:
                      >
                      > 1. As the ambushing player, I want to wait for a suitable armored target
                      > to
                      > appear before giving away my position.
                      >
                      > 2. As the ambushed player, I am not supposed to know about the gun's
                      > position... but I DO.
                      >
                      > So I'd be looking for a solution that takes the level of orders down just
                      > a
                      > notch, possibly varying according to unit status and leadership.
                      > My problem is that I know too much, but I don't want to define a rigid
                      > sequence of events, or count on my imaginary opponent either behaving as I
                      > would or too predictably.
                      >
                      > I suppose a set of "guiding principles" could go along with your orders.
                      > So
                      > I could attach some general guidelines to each of your AXIS OF ATTACK
                      > results. e.g. If mission orders are ATTACK, and the AXIS OF ATTACK result
                      > is 1 = Move directly across table towards, opposite edge, then include a
                      > table of things like: "If infantry encountered, do X. If armor
                      > encountered,
                      > do Y." X & Y might vary if the mission orders were DEFEND or RECONNOITRE
                      > instead. I can see something like different guidelines being used
                      > depending
                      > on the troop type, for example.
                      >
                      > This may be old news. As I said, I've only been getting into all this
                      > recently, so apologies for playing Captain Obvious!
                      >
                      > - Bob
                      >
                      >
                      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Community email addresses:
                      > Post message: SoloWarGame@onelist.com
                      > Subscribe: SoloWarGame-subscribe@onelist.com
                      > Unsubscribe: SoloWarGame-unsubscribe@onelist.com
                      > List owner: SoloWarGame-owner@onelist.com
                      >
                      > Shortcut URL to this page:
                      > http://www.onelist.com/community/SoloWarGame
                      > Yahoo! Groups Links
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • jim davis
                      B17 from AH is the only one I can thjnk of off hand that was writtenas a solo game. Two Hour Wargames are useful to convert to solo due to their mechanisms.
                      Message 10 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                        B17 from AH is the only one I can thjnk of off hand
                        that was writtenas a solo game. Two Hour Wargames are
                        useful to convert to solo due to their mechanisms. I
                        am in the process of goin gthru Lone Warrior issues on
                        Magseb to find all the ideas I can.
                        Would the ambush system work transposed to different
                        periods or sizes of actions? Havnt run into it
                        myself.
                        Jim D
                        --- perni <perni@...> wrote:

                        > Hi,
                        >
                        > New subscriber here, from Sweden. Found my way here
                        > from a thread on
                        > solitaire games on BGG yesterday (thanks Ben!).
                        >
                        > I have played Ambush! for 15+ years. For about 10
                        > years it was the
                        > only board wargame I played (always coop with my
                        > brother controlling
                        > soldiers B, D, F and H). I am impressed by how alive
                        > those cardboard
                        > enemies in Ambush! can be, and the way the game
                        > creates complex
                        > stories in a hex-and-counter wargame.
                        >
                        > Other solitaire boardgames I have bought or read
                        > about in the last few
                        > years, since getting back into ftf wargames, turned
                        > out to be mostly
                        > about fighting randomly generated enemies controlled
                        > by simple tables
                        > and dice. Sold my copy of SASL after a few attempts
                        > to play it. Other
                        > similar games lies around unplayed. I did enjoy a
                        > few small games,
                        > more like puzzles, like Minden Game's 1914 game.
                        >
                        > Are there any other board/miniature wargames outside
                        > of the Ambush!
                        > series that have "programmed scenarios"?
                        >
                        > --
                        > /Pelle
                        >
                        >


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                      • Pelle Nilsson
                        ... Yes, very much so. I m sure there are many many hours of work behind each mission scripting every detail. Replayability is not so high for most missions.
                        Message 11 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                          "Bob George" <bobstro@...> writes:

                          > Ah, OK. I take it preparing the cards is a good bit of work, and
                          > each set is only applicable to one specific scenario? Are they
                          > locked to a specific force composition and map?

                          Yes, very much so. I'm sure there are many many hours of work behind
                          each mission scripting every detail. Replayability is not so high
                          for most missions.

                          > I also very interested in comparing different game mechanisms. I'm tracking
                          > eBay for a copy of Ambush!, B-17 Queen of the Skies, Patton's Finest and
                          > other solo game classics.

                          I bought Patton's Best last year, but from reading the rules it is
                          too random for me. For the same reason I have not bothered to invest
                          in B-17 and some other classics.

                          Open Fire is like Ambush! but with a platoon of tanks instead of a
                          squad of soldiers. My copy is still unpunched. It uses a slightly
                          simplified Ambush! system where you place numbered markers into
                          specified hexes at mission start, and when you are close to a marker
                          you roll for activation, and if the marker is activated you look up
                          the paragraph that tells you what is hidden there. I'm not sure if
                          there is a mission card like in Ambush! to control enemy movement
                          down to exact hexes, or if they move only using simple paragraph
                          rules.

                          /Pelle
                        • Bob George
                          ... Yeah, its somewhere square in between those extremes that I want to be. The support material for Nuts already gets me more than halfway there. I have
                          Message 12 of 12 , Nov 1, 2007
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                            On 11/1/07, Pelle Nilsson <perni@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > [...] (re: programming) I'm sure there are many many hours of work behind
                            > each mission scripting every detail. Replayability is not so high
                            > for most missions.
                            >
                            > [...]
                            >
                            > I bought Patton's Best last year, but from reading the rules it is
                            > too random for me. For the same reason I have not bothered to invest
                            > in B-17 and some other classics.


                            Yeah, its somewhere square in between those extremes that I want to be. The
                            support material for Nuts already gets me more than halfway there. I have
                            thought about marking out likely opposing unit locations based on type
                            rather than just rolling for a random selection off the list, to slant the
                            odds of certain units appearing in "prime" circumstances. I'll know (as
                            would any commander) where the enemy is likely to be, but not for certain
                            where he is. I just need to figure out (or re-discover) a reasonable way of
                            getting figs to react as "they" want to rather than as I want them to.

                            I am interested in eventually trying some naval and aerial games, probably
                            also solo. Convoy escort, Bismarck and Battle of Britain strike me as good
                            candidates. Has anybody played a combination of good core rules and solo
                            mechanics that works well for these dimensions?

                            I really should be focusing on getting the core Nuts rules down instead of
                            wandering off on all these little fun side explorations!

                            - Bob


                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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