Friday, December 2, 2011

Tme Scale

I was reading a boardgame newsgroup discussion of a WW2 air game the other day.   Each game turn represented 4 seconds of real time.   Not 5 seconds or 10 seconds.....exactly 4 seconds.   Typical playing time for the game, as quoted by the author "3 to 4 hours".    Uh......really????

So - let's say you get through, being generous, 20 turns.   That's 80 seconds of scale time....a lifetime in air combat.   You play 80 seconds of scale time in 3 hours.  

To me, that is the height of absurdity!   In a combat situation requiring snap judgements and intuition, this game (as many air games) instead turns into an over analyzed chess match.  

One poster had mentioned that he played the game via email....and he played 1 game that lasted 11 MONTHS.

Oh my.

I can tell that what I want in an air combat game must not fit at all with what the gaming community wants.  I've played around with some ideas, but they all center on rapid decisions, boom boom boom activities and at most a "dogfight" is over in 5 minutes.  But - that 5 minutes is full of decisions and reactions, not beard stroking and analysis.

I'm currently 60% through rebasing my ancients, as well as finishing up a house section for my tabletop.    Finished up 3 battalions of Spanish for my Pennisular collection using the new style I'm adopting to speed my painting.  I finished 36 figures in about 16 hours of work.   Pretty fast to me; still have to finish off the bases.   Here's a photo of a stand right now:

And a gratuitous photo from a past WW2 game, just because I like it.


  1. First up, nice Spanish. What make?

    Second, thanks for having a mobile friendly blog template! Makes reading and posting on the move much easier.


  2. Hi Brent,

    Nice thing on the aircombat !
    BTW what brand of paint do you use on your naps ?

  3. The "Spanish" are actually Old Glory early French in bicornes. Don't tell anybody....

    I use craft paints; mainly Americana and Anita's.


  4. Hi -
    Your remarks in re air combat could almost as well be applied to wargames in general, bearing in mind time frames we are looking at. One of the reasons I prefer 'fast play' sets is that the emphasis is upon making quick decisions in the face of rapidly developing events.

    That certain 'realisms' are sacrificed is no sacrifice to me, as what a lot of them mean is stuff that in the heat of action is going to be a long way from the minds of anyone involved in the fight.

    As for a dogfight between numbers of aircraft - isn't it a case of every one [i.e. every aircraft] for himself? Can anyone really direct such an action?

    Great photos!

  5. Nice "Spanish" sir. I'd love to get into a FOB:2 Napoleonic game. Heavy cav, light infantry all sorts of good stuff.