Interview with Grandmaster Phil


On Waterloo Bridge, looking east. King’s College London is on the left. Taken on 2013 trip to the inaugural Connections-UK conference. London was having a heat wave. I loved London.

The Centre for International Maritime Security (CIMSEC) blog today features an extended interview with Dr. Phil Sabin, of the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, also author of the excellent book Simulating War: Studying Conflict Through Simulation Games.

Dr. Sabin discusses his start in wargaming, , how military professionals can and should use wargames (and advances some very good reasons why professional wargaming is currently experiencing a swell of official interest), what makes a good wargame, the essential differences between board and computer wargames, and names several wargames on asymmetric conflict that are of interest (two of these are my Kandahar and A Distant Plain! Beirut ’82 and Drive on Baghdad get a shout-out too).

Have a read of it!

About brtrain
This blog is mostly devoted to posts, work and resources on "serious" conflict simulation games.

4 Responses to Interview with Grandmaster Phil

  1. ludobits says:

    “Simulating War” has been on my radar – and in my Amazon cart – for quite a while. Very interesting observations and recommendations. Makes me very curious about Hell’s Gate.

    “I find so many published games to be inaccurate, over-complex or both”. Would you tend to agree with that?

    • brtrain says:

      You should definitely get Phil’s book. It’s been in print long enough that you might be able to get a cheaper one from Abebooks or some place like that. He’s very articulate about some things I struggle to talk about.
      Inaccurate – sure. I look at a lot of current DG stuff and ask myself the Zen koan, “What is the sound of one hand waving?”
      Over-complex – I think he may have meant meant “fiddly to little or no apparent purpose” rather than “too difficult for easy play”. Though some “system” games do get pretty bloated after a while (not just ASL).

      • alsandor says:

        I bought the epub (Kindle) version at 13,30$CDN or 10,27$US (at Best deal as hardcover is hundreds of $ and paperbacks vary between 18$US (used) and 34$CDN (new).

  2. Pingback: WARGAME WEDNESDAY: The Player’s Aid interviews Marc Gouyon-Rety –

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