Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Maps and Other matters.


Due to a spyware infestation on my computer I lost all the computer-generated maps I'd drawn up for Hetzenberg. In a way this was a good thing. I found I was painting myself into a corner with regard to options for the mighty Duchy of Hetzenberg and its beligerent neighbor, the Margravate of Dunkeldorf-Pfuhl. Now I'm drawing up a new map - using old-fashioned hexagon paper and colored pencils and the mapping system given in Battlegames magazines, issues 1-8.

To some extent this method is similar to that found in Tony Bath's seminal "Setting up a wargames campaign." Each hexagon on the map returns a population figure depending on the prevailing terrain, and thus a given value of taxable income. From this comes the national military budget. As others on the Old School Wargames loop have noted, only a small proportion of the population can be called to arms before the economy begins to fall apart. The armies of Hetzenberg and Dunkeldorf are hardly going to be military leviathans in any case, and using this reasoning suits me just fine!
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At the moment I'm equivocal about what level of depth and detail to use in my campaign world. The 2nd Edition of "Warfare in the Age of Reason" rules by Tod Kershner and Dale Wood (Emperor's Press of Chicago) has a nice-looking campaign system called The Sport of Kings. It includes a neat set of seige-craft rules too, an essential in 18th century wargaming.
So, a question (and a poll on my Hetzenberg Blog). What depth of campaign rules do you prefer? Deep, moderate, or superficial - or even "What rules?"

5 comments:

MurdocK said...

Hello,

I have already 're-done' the Sport of Kings map, and put forward a copy of it on MurdocKs MarauderS.

So far, there has been limited interest in the 'game' aspect from the blog contributors.

Perhaps the coming 'big battle' will generate more?

abdul666 said...

Murdock,
the blog contributors are divided in two categories:
-those already campaigning and tabletop gaming in a local group: namely the Gallia - Hesse-Seewald 'circle' and the Mieczyslaw - Norden - Saxe-Bearstein. They already have all their needs satisfied locally, thus expect very little from the 'EvE' blog as a medium / support to enhance their gaming activities.

-the isolated individuals, who know they have practically no chance to meet another member of our group across a tabletop. Their "limited interest in the 'game' aspect" reflects merely that; perhaps even discussing at lenght of "games they would never play" would be putting salt on an open wound?

Yet I'm not certain the situation is totally hopeless. I posted as a comment to the sept 30 post 'Complicating the map question' a suggestion on how -possibly?- improve the gaming interactions within our group.

May be childishly irrealistic? Decades ago, the Society of Ancients organized something along these lines. The initiative died soon, from lack of interest: AncMed gamers were already so numerous that very few were attracted to battles by proxies: most had enough opponents at hand and gamed weekly or more at their full leisure. We rulers of a Lace Wars Imagi-Nation /contributors to EvE, on the opposite, would perhaps gain enough from such form of Internet interaction to be motivated?

Hoping at least to start a discussion on the 'how to improve our blog-level wargaming interaction' topic,
best to all,
Jean-Louis

Bluebear Jeff said...

AJ,

I love that phrase you have . . . "Reality is for those who lack ImagiNations" . . . bravo!


-- Jeff

MurdocK said...

Jean-Louis,

You may well be correct that the 'circles' cannot be broken.

The mere fact that folks are posting here though gives me hope that a larger circle can be made.

The original thoughts going into the creation of EvE was for something like this giant kreigspeil to come about. What was needed, and possibly still is, is a pair of leading players to come to the fore as either the Emperor (or Empress) or the Elector, so that others might 'rally round' them or stand aside or offer themselves (or troops etc) as mercenaries for hire...

I had put in from the start that a map was needed to be the 'seed crystal' around which such a vision could come into focus. I still think so.

As far as game tables or just 'game elements' or even storytelling out the battles goes; well all three could well be used!

The whole idea being to explore our hobbies in a way different than before, in a way that involved others...

I would glady allow the solo gamers to take on battle moments, or have battles faught, by proxy, on different continents as I KNOW that just by engaging those other players we will all benefit.

What I suspect is needed is some sort of common acceptable framework from which the forces may be drawn and can be flexible enough to be used in a veriety of game systems (or no system at all...) so long as the material is of sufficient detail as to allow all those involved to participate fully.

Stokes Schwartz said...

Hello there A.J.,

For me, I'd say superficial to moderate. I want a reasonably plausible background for the ongoing hostilities between Stollen and Zichenau (rulers, geography, limited info. on resources, and limited info. on economies, population, etc.), but I don't want to get too bogged down in the details.

Wait! Maybe I already am bogged down. Come to think of it, I've been filling a notebook with this stuff for the last year. Ok, let's retract everything just said and go with "more detailed than I thought"!

Best Regards,

Stokes

I'd say