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Subject: New COIN Themes? rss

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Volko Ruhnke
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Oerjan wrote:
Angola was one of Volko's original themes for the COIN series, but he got diverted by cooperating with other designers. AFAIK it is still on his to-do list though.

/Oerjan
Or somebody's to-do list, anyway!
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Peter Sharpe

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I would think the Rhodesian Bush War would be ripe for a COIN game. Complex ideologies, guerrilla warfare, international influence are all there set against the backdrop of the wider cold war. It would only have three main sides but maybe that's an option
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Volko Ruhnke
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Agreed, I had thought about it, even ahead of Angola, contemplated South Africa as a possible 4th, then rejected that. The need to convert to just 3 Factions (in those early days in the Series) turned me away.

Would love to see someone do it--definitely some interesting counterinsurgency approaches there.

Volko
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Gabriel Conroy
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Volko wrote:
Agreed, I had thought about it, even ahead of Angola, contemplated South Africa as a possible 4th, then rejected that. The need to convert to just 3 Factions (in those early days in the Series) turned me away.

Would love to see someone do it--definitely some interesting counterinsurgency approaches there.

Volko
In this vein, I'm interested to see how the two-faction variant works out for Algeria, as I think a two or three faction setup is what A Terrible Beauty (The Irish War of independence) needs.
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Andrew B
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Volko wrote:
Agreed, I had thought about it, even ahead of Angola, contemplated South Africa as a possible 4th, then rejected that. The need to convert to just 3 Factions (in those early days in the Series) turned me away.

Would love to see someone do it--definitely some interesting counterinsurgency approaches there.

Volko
Hello Volko,

Have you considered a COIN game with more than 4 active players?
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I have often thought that there are periods of Irish history that COIN would fit well (and not just War of Independence). For example, one take on factions for the Cromwellian/Confederate Wars might be: Old English; Gaelic Irish; New English; New Model Army. Alternatively, perhaps: Parliamentarians; Royalists; Gaelic Lords; O'Neills. Either way, the effects of plague, famine and depletion of the population would have to be represented.

Not that I would have time to do this myself.
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achates wrote:
In this vein, I'm interested to see how the two-faction variant works out for Algeria, as I think a two or three faction setup is what A Terrible Beauty (The Irish War of independence) needs.
I don't know how A Terrible Beauty is being done, but I think a four faction approach could be interesting. The main armed actors in the War were Crown forces and radical Republicans. Unionists were a politically very important faction distinct from the Crown.

More moderate Nationalists were largely sidelined during the conflict historically. There are two aspects to this - the electoral collapse of the Irish Parliamentary Party which had represented nationalists for decades, and the subsequent radicalisation of the Sinn Fein representation that replaced it. The latter was arguably in significant part a consequence of coercion winning out as the Crown's dominant response to events. For a long time, the organizational connection between Sinn Fein and armed rebellion was mostly a matter of government and unionist rhetoric, and it would be interesting for the game to leave room to explore what might have happened if the Crown had not forced them together.

Leaving room to explore non-coercive policy instruments could also improve the game by leaving space for the Crown to implement strategies less aligned with Unionist interests.
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Gabriel Conroy
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ConG wrote:
achates wrote:
In this vein, I'm interested to see how the two-faction variant works out for Algeria, as I think a two or three faction setup is what A Terrible Beauty (The Irish War of independence) needs.
I don't know how A Terrible Beauty is being done, but I think a four faction approach could be interesting. The main armed actors in the War were Crown forces and radical Republicans. Unionists were a politically very important faction distinct from the Crown.

More moderate Nationalists were largely sidelined during the conflict historically. There are two aspects to this - the electoral collapse of the Irish Parliamentary Party which had represented nationalists for decades, and the subsequent radicalisation of the Sinn Fein representation that replaced it. The latter was arguably in significant part a consequence of coercion winning out as the Crown's dominant response to events. For a long time, the organizational connection between Sinn Fein and armed rebellion was mostly a matter of government and unionist rhetoric, and it would be interesting for the game to leave room to explore what might have happened if the Crown had not forced them together.

Leaving room to explore non-coercive policy instruments could also improve the game by leaving space for the Crown to implement strategies less aligned with Unionist interests.
Indeed. There was some discussion of this on the Terrible Beauty forum. I do agree a fourth faction could represent the moderate nationalist & also conservative Catholic & commercial interests (and suggested something along those lines). As an agglomeration, such a faction would have to be somewhat artificial, a bit like the Directorio in Cuba Libre. But I think that would be ok.

However what was at one point proposed was a factional split within Sinn Fein, which I think is ahistorically projecting Civil War divisions into the pre-Treaty era.
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Morgane Gouyon-Rety
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Franklin1742 wrote:
Some disagreement often arises over whether the 'Glorious Revolution' of 1688 in Britain was really a popular revolution or, in reality, an invasion by a Dutch army. The term 'Glorious' has the air of a post hoc propaganda label, whereas the actual invasion shows some traits of a coup with counter insurgency tactics, and it's arguable whether James, by showing more resolve, could have turned the tide.
The follow up conflict in Ireland was an extension to that, but you could argue that the whole thing was ancillary to the complicated politico-religious conflicts right across Europe. As always, with hindsight, it's possible to speculate that a different result at any one of a number of the major battles (Boyne 1690 was a very close affair) might have produced a different general political balance in the longer run.
I'm not a specialist of the "Glorious" "Revolution", but it has always appeared to me more as being an aristocratic coup in England, possibly with some decent popular support, but certainly not a popular revolution...
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Josiah Miller
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An intriguing theme to me for COIN would be something involving the gang wars in the 80's in Los Angeles. Two clear gangs between the Bloods and Crips, but there was an explosion of smaller gangs around that time. All of it was smack in the middle of the US Drug war and crack epidemic.

Has there ever been thought given to a 3-player COIN game? The lack of good titles designed for that number of players is very low, and the asymmetrical nature of the COIN series seems like it could take advantage of the common pitfalls of 3p games.
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Pete Martyn
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brotherjo wrote:
An intriguing theme to me for COIN would be something involving the gang wars in the 80's in Los Angeles. Two clear gangs between the Bloods and Crips, but there was an explosion of smaller gangs around that time. All of it was smack in the middle of the US Drug war and crack epidemic.
This would be an insta-buy for me. It would also be interesting to set it in the 90s, in which case one of the players could take the role of the notoriously corrupt Rampart division of the LAPD.
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Volko Ruhnke
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As to 5-player and 3-player COIN designs: yes, I and other designers have given thought to it.

5-player has deterred me because I like to put even initiative cards for all Factions into the deck, and 5-Faction permutations would then require a minimum 120 cards. It could be done: Fire in the Lake has 120 Event cards; and even distribution among Factions is not an absolute requirement.

3-player would be easier, and there are a number of good ideas on how to do it, ranging from just having 3 Factions run through the usual sequence of play (it works; have tried it on an early prototype of Chechnya COIN by Mike Owens) to giving each Faction a minor "sidekick" Faction that alternates with the others in activating on a 4th initiative symbol shared by those 3 minors (an innovation by Steve Carey for a design on WWI Near East COIN).

Volko
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Josiah Miller
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Well, I would certainly love to see more modern themes. I've had to pull myself out of auto-buying every COIN title, and now hope to cherry pick the ones that intrigue me the most. Obviously, it's personal opinion, with many people probably preferring the more historical themes, but my favorite Volko titles (COIN or not) are those dealing with current or recent events: Labyrinth, Distant Plain, Andean Abyss.

For my interest, anything post-1950's is my wheelhouse.
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Konstantin Lubsky
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Here is my proposal for further COIN games:

- Napoleon in Spain
- Independence Movements in Latin America in early 19th century (why are there no games about that?)
-Russian Civil War in the Ukraine 1918-20
- Yugoslavia 1941-45 and 1991-95
- Soviet invasion in Afghanistan 1979-89

What do you think about that?
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Jesse Edelstein
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Konstantin wrote:

Here is my proposal for further COIN games:

- Napoleon in Spain
- Independence Movements in Latin America in early 19th century (why are there no games about that?)
-Russian Civil War in the Ukraine 1918-20
- Yugoslavia 1941-45 and 1991-95
- Soviet invasion in Afghanistan 1979-89

What do you think about that?
With regard to the Soviets in Afghanistan, I think it could be done, perhaps with the Soviets playing COIN and two insurgent factions. I'm not sure the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan should really be a player-controlled faction -- maybe there could be some way it's operated as a bot like the Germans in Falling Sky?

See also, some designers discussing what to do with the 1979-89 war.
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John Rogers
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brotherjo wrote:
Well, I would certainly love to see more modern themes. I've had to pull myself out of auto-buying every COIN title, and now hope to cherry pick the ones that intrigue me the most. Obviously, it's personal opinion, with many people probably preferring the more historical themes, but my favorite Volko titles (COIN or not) are those dealing with current or recent events: Labyrinth, Distant Plain, Andean Abyss.

For my interest, anything post-1950's is my wheelhouse.
+1.

The initial draw for me was tackling modern, complex situations like the drug war in Colombia or the current conflicts in the Middle East. I'm happy for Volko, GMT, and fans of history that the more historical iterations have been so well received. I'm a patient man. I'll wait with hopeful anticipation for the next modern design.
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Drew
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achates wrote:
There was some discussion of this on the Terrible Beauty forum.
Hang on, what A Terrible Beauty forum? I'm not seeing a BGG listing for ATB yet.
 
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Gabriel Conroy
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ajpl wrote:
achates wrote:
There was some discussion of this on the Terrible Beauty forum.
Hang on, what A Terrible Beauty forum? I'm not seeing a BGG listing for ATB yet.
Sorry I meant thread not forum. https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1263243/any-news-about-terr...
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Morten K
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The 80 years war would be fantastic. I'd buy it! But I hope the planned COIN on Somalia will make it out as that seems very interesting to me as well.
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Drew
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achates wrote:
ajpl wrote:
achates wrote:
There was some discussion of this on the Terrible Beauty forum.
Hang on, what A Terrible Beauty forum? I'm not seeing a BGG listing for ATB yet.
Sorry I meant thread not forum. https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1263243/any-news-about-terr...
Aw man, you had me all excited for a moment.
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Christopher Leary
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I've been thinking (quite a bit of late) that the COIN system would make for a very interesting/fun game set during the period around the War of 1812, from 1810-1820, focused on the native tribes.

The four factions would be:

-Pro-US tribal groups
-Anti-US ("nativist") tribal groups
-US
-British

The more I tinker with it in my head, the more potential I see in it as a viable COIN volume. I could be crazy, though...
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John Johnson
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Call me crazy, but I'd love to see sci-fi or alternate history themes.

--The Man in the High Castle is far from a perfect TV show (I haven't been able to make it through the slog that is the second season) but it would be a great jumping off point for a game.

--How about unrest within a future, high-tech, corporate/fascist surveillance state in the USA or Britain? Carry it even further into bizarro-land and you could have ordinary humans vs. modded humans vs. corporate paramilitary vs. gangs vs. federalist government? I'm thinking something like Android: Netrunner on a map.
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Sakari Lindhen
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At some point we were kicking about on Volko's twitter feed the Sengoku Jidai Japan...though we disagreed on faction (I say the Buddhists monasteries were more active than the pawn-like Imperial house, though today on Facebook Jacob cut the Gordian knot by proposing an Imperial/Buddhist faction (though he was sceptical about the whole idea, to be fair))...I would dearly like to see a game on this period, and so hope that someone more creative than myself can ferment and realise this game...
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Jacob Williams
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Sakke_af_Lindh wrote:
At some point we were kicking about on Volko's twitter feed the Sengoku Jidai Japan...though we disagreed on faction (I say the Buddhists monasteries were more active than the pawn-like Imperial house, though today on Facebook Jacob cut the Gordian knot by proposing an Imperial/Buddhist faction (though he was sceptical about the whole idea, to be fair))...I would dearly like to see a game on this period, and so hope that someone more creative than myself can ferment and realise this game...
Though I am skeptical of this working as a COIN game, maybe it could turn out really good like Falling Sky. Also, I thought Star Wars Rebellion was a shameless money grab by FFG, but it turned out to be the greatest game of 2016 (and possible one of my favorites of all times). So I could be wrong. It just seems like it has a lot going against it for a COIN model (e.g. Not mention differentiation between each factions' military, more of a traditional city state war style, the main players weren't attempting to unify Japan at the same time, etc.)

As I stated previously in this thread, I think the Bakamatsu (the Japanese Civil War that reinstated the Emperor as the head of government) is PRIME for a COIN game. There are some challenges such as there weren't 4 major factions. But it was a grass roots rebellion with deep political ideas (e.g. Japan not wanting to suffer the same fate as China with respect to the West, modernizing society, death of the samurai caste system).
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Mark Turner
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How about Bosnia? Serbs, Croats, Bosnian Muslims and the UN...
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