Falling Sky: The Gallic Ways of War

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Falling Sky—The Gallic Revolt Against Caesar depicts each of its factions’ personalities in war and diplomacy—as in the all the COIN Series volumes—mainly through its diverse menus of commands and special abilities.  But the card deck adds more such personality to each player role.  Here we present just eight Falling Sky events that display particular ways and means of the Gauls to combat the Romans and, of course, one another.  With each card, we add background from the game’s Playbook, which provides historical notes on each of the 72 event cards (with thanks to Marc Gouyon-Rety for his assistance there and in suggesting several of the events that are in the deck).  Citations below are from Caesar’s Commentaries on the Gallic War in the format [book.chapter], quotations as translated by Carolyn Hammond, Oxford University Press, 1996.

COIN Series Falling Sky: Aedui Strategy

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Falling Sky leverages the COIN Series system to highlight Caesar’s triumph of “divide and conquer”.  In the third of our four peeks into its faction roles, we hear of the strengths and weaknesses of the Celts who personified the local propensity alternatively to side with or against the invader….

Delian League Diaries #1

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mark-herman11 February

Today I played Pericles for the first time, so it’s game on! This is the first of a regular set of notes that I will pen and post on InsideGMT and on my Blog. So, what is Pericles?

Pericles: The Peloponnesian Wars is the sequel to my recently published Churchill: Big Three Struggle for Peace. Although Pericles is the second in my Great Politicians Series, it is its own design that does not follow a formula from its predecessor, yet borrows the conference mechanic to simulate how City State strategy was formed and executed in 5th Century Greece. Unlike Churchill, Pericles is a wargame, although a light one. So, let me frame my design for you.

Talon Tuesday Issue #22: Talon Puzzle 1 Solution

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“Talon Tuesdays” is an article series appearing on InsideGMT periodically on Tuesdays.  It features articles from the Talon development team regarding the game’s design, development and upcoming release.

Issue #22: Talon Puzzle 1 Solution

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I’m so pumped for the community’s response to the first Talon Puzzle. People really took to answering them. Within hours of the Talon Tuesday issue going live we had nearly 100% correct responses on BoardGameGeek and some really close responses in the comments section here on the InsideGMT page.  Let’s go through the solution as it highlights a key tactical maneuver.

COIN Series Falling Sky: Roman Strategy

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Here is a peek into the character of each role in Volume VI of the COIN Series, Falling Sky, that also will get you a step ahead of the competition when you sit down to play.  In this first of a 4-part series, anonymous ancient authors presume to advise Caesar on his strategy for the reduction of Gaul….

Talon Tuesday Issue #21: How to Build a Warhead

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“Talon Tuesdays” is an article series appearing on InsideGMT periodically on Tuesdays.  It features articles from the Talon development team regarding the game’s design, development and upcoming release.

Issue #21: How to Build a Warhead

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Missiles, perhaps, underwent the greatest number of changes during development in terms of mechanics. They are a Talon faction weapon and a mainstay of combat with a lot of character. We wanted an on-map tracking weapon, but we didn’t want it to be so complex it took away from the rest of combat and became a game unto itself. Initially, Missiles only took 2 hits to destroy and had a turn radius of 1. We were designing from a “realism” perspective at first with this. We wanted to be able to see Fighters make tight turns and dodge the missiles; and we wanted to be able to shoot them down.  This proved to be a real problem. First it was too easy to shoot down a missile as Patrick will explain below. Second it made Missiles way too easy to get inside of and really diminished their power. From a practical standpoint it harmed the streamlined nature of the game as we had separate damage counters for the Missiles and the Missile turning status was tracked by flipping the counter. Now, Missile damage status is tracked by the Missile counter itself with a really simple system described on the Play Aid Card below.  Patrick joined the team after we ditched the Missile turn radius but they still had a ways to go. I’ll let Patrick tell you the rest of the story.

Design Collaboration in Skies Above the Reich

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I asked my design partner, Mark Aasted, if he wanted to write something for InsideGMT about our game, Skies Above the Reich. He came back with a pithy reply. Actually, he came back with an uncooperative, evasive, mildly combative, yet unexpected, reply. It’s worth printing here. His reply may not provide the details of the difficult and often contentious design process that must be negotiated between two intelligent and mature designers (I hear you snickering, Mark), nevertheless it elucidates a certain something about what it’s like co-designing a game. This is what he wrote back:

“Do I wanna write one?  Ha ha ha…it almost sounds as if you asked if I wanted to write an article for a war game magazine. I remember how well the last one went. Hold on, let me wipe the tear from my eye and catch my breath…