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Friday, November 11

Who Killed Wargaming?

 This article is written by Greg Costikyan. The opinions expressed are his alone, and no other person or organization should be deemed in any way responsible for their expression here.

Opens this gem of an article. Appears to have been written in 1996. Packs much history in a short read. I found nothing in the article I could disagree with. Here is a direct link to his home page. 

My only knock I can give him is he is responsible for the original Paranoia roleplaying game. Fucking hate that game. But, being a wargame designer first, maybe it his middle-finger to the roleplaying hobby?

There are further articles (and books) he has written on gaming on the site and they all are thoughtful and steeped with actual experience in the whole hobby. I recommend any fanatic gamer/wargamer read everything he has on his site.


  1. I don't know if this still rings true today. There are quite a few wargame companies which have been rather successful over the last few decades. GMT, MMP, Compass, Worthington, etc. all continue to pump out a huge number of new games every year on a wide variety of topics. I'd venture we're in the golden age of wargaming right now.

  2. Totally agree with you. This was written in 1996 and was "taking the piss" of the scene at that time. The "gold", if you would, for me is the relevant history of the time which I was not aware of. I love these classic wargames and seeing what went on behind the scenes and who was who was really enjoyable to read. And, of course, seeing how TSR fucked the wargame fanatics and missed the value of direct customer feedback was... another example of how bad creative types can be at business.

    It is a golden age of wargames, so much so I am hesitant to invest much money in new games. Well, that is not true. I want to get a complete game of Eastfront (a Columbia block game), and Richard Berg's The Battle for North Africa under my belt first. I get a game of those done against a human being and I will give myself permission to find the best Stalingrad and Kursk game out there! There is also finding the "best" game of the entire American Civil War I still need to do. Is Victory Games' Civil War still considered a good game?

    1. Yeah, I wasn't aware of how poorly TSR treated SPI and, most importantly, its hardcore customers. Total BS, for sure.

      I'm not sure what the best *entire* U.S. Civil War game is. I only own an as-yet unplayed copy of GMT's For the People. I understand GMT's The U.S. Civil War is good but I haven't even peeked at the rules.

      Some day I'd like Columbia to take a stab at a complete U.S. Civil War block game. You *can* combine Bobby Lee and Sam Grant, but from what I understand it's not a great idea.


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