PC GAME PREVIEW posted on 1 DEC 1998 by Scott Parrino
No single war or strategy game, besides perhaps the venerable RISK, has gained as much mass acceptance as the Milton Bradley classic boardgame Axis & Allies. The game is played on a top-down stylized world map, where the various players (up to five --- Axis: Germany and Japan, Allies: U.S., UK, and Russia) move plastic infantry, tanks, planes, Anti-air guns, ships, and submarines in an attempt to conquer and vanquish the opponent(s). Most of the staff here at the Wargamer has played this game many times into the wee hours of the morning, leaving us with warped visions of would-be world domination. The game begins in 1942, with Germany on Russia's doorstep and Japan rolling up the Pacific Islands.
AFTER ACTION REPORT posted on 16 NOV 1998 by Scott Parrino
OBJECTIVE KHARKOV is one the largest scenarios that comes with the new East Front Campaign Disk 1 tracing the development and execution of Manstein`s plan to retake Kharkov on 11th March 1943, some four weeks after losing it. The II SS Panzer Corps led by General Hauser scored a brilliant victory over the Russian 3rd Army and 69th Tank Army. The Germans retained a hold on Kharkov until a withdrawal was ordered shortly after the Battle of Kursk. The scenario runs for 40 turns and must have one of the largest maps 134 x 75 hexes ever seen in a wargame. Taking on something this size for the first time is a daunting task, so to give myself some extra incentive and interest I decided to write up my experiences as I went along, firstly recording the battle plan and then documenting how it worked out. The purpose of this article is to analyse the scenario and look at the strategy and tactics largely from the German point of view.
STRATEGY AND TACTICS ARTICLE posted on 16 NOV 1998 by Scott Parrino
This is not a review of Hasbro Interactive’s Axis & Allies. It is instead a report on what is being fixed, and when the fixes will be available. This report is also a guide for how to get the most out of this flawed but still very enjoyable game.
AFTER ACTION REPORT posted on 16 OCT 1998 by Scott Parrino
While waiting for East Front II, I decided to load up East Front 1.08 last night to play another scenario from my campaign. My army is a 1941 SS Panzer battalion consisting of three tank companies (PzIIIh's and PzIVD's and a PzII commander platoon each), three or four 105mm artillery batteries, a mortar battery and four infantry companies (three Pzgr and one engineer), a nice balanced offensive force, except for the absence of any recon units. The engineers and one tank company only arrived on the map after move 6.
AFTER ACTION REPORT posted on 1 SEP 1998 by Scott Parrino
The following is a narrative account of my play of the first Operation of Close Combat III's "Whole War" campaign, played from the Soviet side. I'd played the demo a few times, and one historical scenario in the actual game, before starting this. I didn't replay any games to get better results, letting the bodies fall where they may.
HISTORICAL ARTICLE posted on 27 AUG 1998 by Scott Parrino
At the time of the German invasion on June 22, 1941, the Russian armaments industry was in the process of being modernized and expanded by Stalin's programs of industrialization. This was preparation for, among other things, what Stalin felt was an inevitable conflict with Hitler's Germany. In basic terms this involved the overhauling older Tsarist-era factories as well as building new ones. This was enhanced by negotiating deals with more modern industrial nations such as Germany, Italy and the USA for modern machinery and more efficient manufacturing technologies. Most of the existing industrial plants were in European Russia, but the new factories in the 1930's were built in cities along the length of the Volga River east of Moscow, and especially east of the Ural Mountains.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 21 AUG 1998 by Scott Parrino
Team Apache incorporates a lot more into the game than just simply the simulation of one AH-64 Apache attack helicopter--in a Campaign the player is given command of an attack helicopter company in the field, complete with personnel issues to resolve with pilots and copilot/gunners, and a force of seven Apaches and supporting weapons and maintenance crews.
PRESS RELEASE posted on 15 AUG 1998 by Scott Parrino
The Wargamer, TalonSoft, and 4CDs would like to thank everyone who participated in the Operational Art of War Scenario contest. For those of you that didn't have a chance to play all the scenarios in our Operational Art of War, Volume I Scenario Design Contest, here is the entire collection of scenarios, as entered.
HISTORICAL ARTICLE posted on 11 AUG 1998 by Scott Parrino
Just after the French collapse in June 1940, Hitler decided that he wanted to carry on an offensive against the Soviet Union in July of 1940, but after taking time to rebuild unit losses taken in France. The "Battle of Britain" then became the new priority for the remainder of the Summer of 1940 until its conclusion. After the failure to subdue Britain, Hitler then turned his attention to the east once again, and planned that the offensive should take place in late 1940, but OKH (Oberkommando des Heeres or "High Command of the Armies") advised him against it. The assumption was that campaigning in the Russian autumn weather would be too difficult to accomplish, and that by delaying the attack, it would allow them to further build-up their forces. Finally, on the 18th of December 1940 Adolf Hitler announced Directive 21: Unternehm Barbarossa (Operation Barbarossa) named after the great medieval German Emperor (1152-1190).
HISTORICAL ARTICLE posted on 11 AUG 1998 by Scott Parrino
On the 4th of June 1942, it was Finnish Field-Marshal Carl Gustav Mannerheim's 75th birthday. Adolf Hitler took this occasion to fly to Helsinki to visit him in person and to discuss many important issues regarding how Barbarossa was going. Germany and Finland, though not in a formal alliance, had developed a good relationship and were "co-belligerents" in a struggle against the Soviet Union. They had continued good relations since WW I, after the Germans shared their military training and military assistance.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 28 JUL 1998 by Scott Parrino
Izyum is Schwerpunkt's fifth war game title in their War in the East Series. As Schwerpunkt's other titles, Izyum focuses on a series of closely related battles on the Eastern Front between the German and Soviet armies. More specifically, Schwerpunkt's primary game design focus is on battles from World War II that have not already been done or at least not done well.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 28 JUL 1998 by Scott Parrino
iPanzer'44 simulates armored engagements during World War II from 1944 to 1945. The game includes an impressive fifty scenarios and two campaigns. The campaigns can be played as German or Allied player and covers the 1944 summer offensive on the Easter Front (Germany versus the USSR) and the Battle of the Bulge (Germany versus the United States). Engagements range from commanding a single tank to a tank company complete with supporting units.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 26 JUL 1998 by Scott Parrino
That being said, stop reading this review, and go get this fine game. This is a solid game that people will be playing for a long time, especially with the battle editor and free Internet play support through MPlayer. Enjoy and watch out for my Panther behind that house!
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 30 JUN 1998 by Scott Parrino
That move has now been made so we are all set for Act II of the East Front saga. The critics have taken their seats, the lights are dimmed, and TalonSoft’s new lead, in the guise of East Front Campaign CD1, enters stage right, complete with the latest version 1.07 patch, a completely rewritten and expanded script (the manual), and a new series of campaigns. Has TalonSoft got it right this time? Are gamers willing to forgive TalonSoft's initial blunders and truly appreciate East Front?
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 26 JUN 1998 by Scott Parrino
A feeling of deja vu may overcome those used to the original Five Star Series, as Panzer General II is not fundamentally a 'new' game. It adds a lot of chrome, improved graphics, sounds etc, but no fundamentally new gaming experience. On the other hand, Panzer General II is a highly polished, beautiful product, a real little jewel which deserves an award - and it has received many. All in all, I would give Panzer General II a nine on a scale of one to ten (with ten being the best). Why only a nine? Primarily because Panzer General II is not truly an original game in concept or implementation, hence the game is only almost perfect.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 25 JUN 1998 by Scott Parrino
The Operational Art of War is without a doubt simply the best operational level computer wargame designed to date. It is not a revolutionary system, but it takes tried and true board game concepts and combines them with some unique concepts and a great interface to produce a fantastic package. The detailed manual and complete Scenario Editor make the replay value of this game extremely high. Without a doubt, countless scenarios will be written by players and made available on the Web for years to come. TalonSoft has done it with this one!
AFTER ACTION REPORT posted on 16 JUN 1998 by Scott Parrino
In August 1941, while Guderian's Panzers sped south, and Hoth chased shadows in the north, the unfortunate infantry of Army Group Center were left to hold the front. In particular they held the vital Yelnia salient, which projected across the Desna river pointing at Moscow. Furious counterattacks were launched at Army Group Center, and none more so than those aimed at the salient, organized by Georgi Zhukov acting as a Stavka "special representative." This East Front scenario pits the 102nd Tank Division against the 277th Infantry Division on a massive map 13km x 28km. Although supposedly historical, no source I can find actually lists the 102nd as being involved, although at least two "motorized divs" were used, and it is possible that the 102nd was renamed a motorized division in common with other surviving tank divisions. As the burden of attack is greater I shall let the AI play the Germans.
PRESS RELEASE posted on 15 JUN 1998 by Scott Parrino
The Wargamer's TalonSoft After Action Report contest has come to a close. The staff had a tough time of it picking the winner of the contest. But when it came down to it Martin Rapier's Yelnia report came out ahead in the voting. Martin has already selected to receive a copy of East Front II. We would like to thank everyone that submitted reports to us for this contest, expect to see them posted in their related game sections in the coming weeks.
HISTORICAL ARTICLE posted on 18 MAY 1998 by Scott Parrino
Finland declared neutrality when the Germans attacked the Soviet Union on 22nd June 1941. But Finnish High Command had been (because of a danger of renewed Soviet invasion) negotiating with Germans since the end part of the 1940. Germans had planned a part for the Finnish Army in Operation Barbarossa even though Finland wasn't formally linked up with German plans.
PC GAME REVIEW posted on 30 MAR 1998 by Scott Parrino
East Front is focused on World War II tactical warfare during the German-Russian conflict along the Eastern Front. Each game piece represents a platoon of approximately three to six tanks / guns or 30-40 men. The turn structure is "I go, you go" and the maps are hexagonal grid with a scale of one hex equaling 250 meters. East Front is, therefore, in many ways a revival of the wonderful PanzerBlitz board game (for the grognards) transposed onto the PC. But the game system, as we'll see later, is different and more sophisticated.