Book video review: Zones of Control

ZOC book cover

Or maybe it’s a video book review!

Two reviews of the Zones of Control anthology on Youtube: a lengthy one by the notorious Marco Arnaudo.

And a shorter one by the Bonding with Board Games group, who also do the HAMTAG (Half As Much, Twice As Good) show

By the way, MIT Press is having a sale on this and every other book they carry until Monday!

You can get a copy of this for 40% off, or just thirty Yankbucks!

And be sure to look elsewhere in the Game Studies area, as there are some other very good titles there.

Eight pages of stuff and like always 95% of it is about digital games and gaming, but I have bought and liked:

  • Works of Game: on the Aesthetics of Game and Art, by John Sharp
  • Uncertainty in Games, by Greg Costikyan
  • The Well Played Game: a Player’s Philosophy by Bernard de Koven
  • Critical Play: Radical Game Design by Mary Flanagan (excellent book)
  • War Games: A History of War on Paper by Philipp von Hilgers

Use promocode GIVEBOOKS40 at checkout. Hurry, offer ends at midnight 11/27/2017!  (Discount applies to website purchase only.) Service is prompt and shipping is pretty reasonable too.


Walking the Distant Plain: InsideGMT blog


Over at the InsideGMT blog, Chris Davis gives his impressions of A Distant Plain and how it captures the atmosphere of what he actually experienced during his service in Afghanistan:

No Fun Allowed review of Colonial Twilight


Riccardo Fabris, whom I met in September at David Turczi’s when I visited him in London, has written a short and perceptive review of Colonial Twilight at his blog No Fun Allowed.

Despite the title of his blog, he did have fun with the many and varied difficult decisions in playing this game!

Thanks Riccardo!

Wargames for Christmas (via Players Aid)

Over at the Players Aid blog, Grant Kleinheinz presents his annual list of ten interesting and innovative wargames released this year to give (or hope to get) for Christmas.

Colonial Twilight is on the list, and Red Horde 1920 gets an honourable stocking-stuffer mention!

Other games on the list that I’ve tried include GMT’s Time of Crisis and Hollandspiele’s Supply Lines of the American Revolution, a very interesting work by Tom Russell.

Last year’s list ( Xmas Xhopping List)   had The Scheldt Campaign on it, so I must be dong something Grant likes!

Operation Whirlwind: more historical scenario.


Last night I put together a scenario for Operation Whirlwind with some simple rule changes to reflect the historical and operational limitations placed on both sides. OK to use for any of the game’s three or four editions. Briefly:

  • The city is divided into three divisional sectors that constrain Soviet movement and operations;
  • Hungarian Civilian and Recruit units cannot move (Recruit units represent the large numbers of semi-organized insurgents who turned out to defend their own neighbourhoods);
  • There is no Western intervention and there are no Hungarian Army units (the deserters have been subsumed into the Insurgent counter mix).

This will likely give a greater challenge to both sides, for what people tell me is already an interesting situation. Have a look! (PDF file)


The (brief) return of Balkan Gamble

BGmbl cover


BACK IN PRINT – only 10 copies available! (no wait, only 9 left now…8…7…6…5…4…3…2…1…0)


I initially made only 20 figuring they would never all sell, but they did and people have been asking for it, so I have made up another 10 copies. They sold too. What gives? Is this some kind of a trend?

The Allied invasions of the Balkans that never happened. One of the great what-ifs of World War 2 in the Mediterranean theatre, at least to Hitler and the German High Command, was the possibility of an Allied invasion of Greece and/or Yugoslavia. The Allies knew the Germans perceived such invasions as a credible threat and created several strategic deception plans, leading the Germans to move or keep critical troop formations in northern Italy and the Balkans when they would have been much more useful somewhere else. Scenarios for 1943, 1944, 1945, and a hypothetical 1950 Soviet invasion of Yugoslavia. Uses the Autumn Mist/ Summer Lightning/ Winter Thunder system of formation activations and almost-diceless combat with mission matrix, at a larger scale: 1 week/turn; 30 km/hex; division/brigade; 17×22″ hex map and 280 double-sided counters. Many “chrome” rules to cover the fragmented human, political and physical terrain of the area.

This game has twice the map (and it’s printed on nice heavy paper) and twice the counter sheets, so the price per copy is $25 US. This includes postage. Paypal to Thanks!