Home Forums WWII Thoughts on tactical level game rules (Squad Leader scale) Reply To: Thoughts on tactical level game rules (Squad Leader scale)

Phil Dutré

It sounds to me you know exactly what you want and don’t want in a game. The obvious next step is to write your own rules. I really do mean that. It allows you to emphasize those aspects you like, and not to put in any unnecessary bells and whistles that don’t work for you. After all, when you use a ruleset written by someone else, the unwanted bells and whistles will always be there.

I have learned over the decades that different wargamers want different things. Some want a strong emphasis on hardware (weapons, vehicles, …). Some want to focus on command and control, movement and manoeuvre. Other want to stress army lists, point values and some form of competitive play. More others want historical plausibility, while still others want 100% historical realism (whatever that means).

Then there’s the whole dimension of game mechanics. Some people dislike or hate cards. Others hate buckets of dice. Some – like myself – like to play around with all sorts of experimental mechanics. Etc. IMO, good games design revolves around the proper design of mechanics in order to give the player a strong role identification. Otoh, I don’t care about the relative firepower of weapon 1 vs weapon 2. YMMV.

So, it really depends on what you want to get out of a game. The ultimate WW2 tactical game will never exist in the absolute sense, because games design changes over the years. A game such as SL/ASL shows its age. It’s 70s design that would never originate today. But it has a strong legacy and a cohort of afficionados, and that’s perfectly fine.

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