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Posted on Nov 22, 2010 in Stuff We Like

Holiday Shopping Guide 2010: Games, Books, and More


Historical Wargames

Probably one of the most anticipated games of the year was Panther Games’ Command Ops: Battles from the Bulge [Armchair General Review] [description]. Set during the Second World War, it is a serious, hard-core wargame set at the operational level. With command going up to a full corps and an amazing AI, Battles from the Bulge is perhaps the most impressive wargame we’ve seen this year. It comes at a price – one that might have been too high for gamers to buy themselves, but a perfect gift to give a wargamer who wouldn’t spend it on himself. [$79.99 digital download/$89.99 physical product] Buy Battles from the Bulge

With the conflicts taking place in Central Asia, attention has refocused on the Soviet performance in Afghanistan some two decades ago. Combat Mission: Afghanistan [Armchair General Interview] [description] offers gamers a squad-level Combat Mission experience with battles that look somewhat similar to what might be faced by NATO forces today. Gamers interested in modern small-unit conflicts will enjoy this hard core wargame. [$35.00] Buy Combat Mission: Afghanistan

Field of Glory [Armchair General Review] [description] is a conversion of the historical miniatures game to a PC game. Highly addictive, and already enjoying several expansion packs, Field of Glory makes finding online opponents easy. A simple, intuitive play-by-email (PBEM) system makes this turn-based wargame a snap. [$49.99] Buy Field of Glory

War Plan Pacific [Armchair General Review] [description] is a simple addictive game where players can start and finish the complete war in the Pacific for World War Two in an evening. Finding the balance between subtle strategy and big picture realities can be difficult with highly abstracted games, but War Plan Pacific does this masterfully. [$39.95] Buy War Plan Pacific

The First World War isn’t always the most popular era for wargames, but for those who make it their hobby, there never can be enough wargames about it, mainly because there aren’t that many.  However, recently a number have been released.  One of the latest comes from HPS Simulations, John Tiller’s France ’14 [Armchair General Review] [description].  For those who don’t know, John Tiller is a prolific game developer, often cranking out several games a year.  Their production values aren’t high – there are no splashy graphics or Emmy-winning scores to accompany them.  Instead they focus on historical accuracy, and realistic combat models.  France ’14 may be the epitome of that model.  Highly detailed and immaculately researched units make France ’14 daunting for all but the most learned of World War One military history.  However, if you’re one of them or are giving a gift to one of them, France ’14 will be a must-have. [$49.95] Buy France ’14

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  1. Civilization V is a thoroughly buggy game, and thoroughly lacking in any sort of viable mechanics. It’s as if the developers forgot the basic foundations of their series, since every mechanic, when traced back to the heart of the game, is ultimately unstable and poorly thought out.

    Even the one unit per tile mechanic is, while not obviously at first, a fundamentally broken and poorly implemented idea.

    If you still want a superb empire-building game, you’re better off getting Civilization IV, which possesses decent graphics and perfect, varied, balanced mechanics. Plus it has the best theme song for a game, ever.

    I’d pass on Civ V. Starcraft II, however, is a triple platinum title, and worth every dime.

  2. You missed a very good book- Caroline Princess Of Wales & Other Forgotten People of History by Strategic Publishing,USA.
    Similar to Skulldugery.


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