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Subject: WTID: A non-grognards view rss

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Andy Bultitude
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Firstly, the traditional disclaimer – this is my first review on BGG, so will only be in the form of a short summary and some collected thoughts rather than an in depth look at the rules and game play. Also, as you can tell from the title, I am not a war-gamer (or at least wasn’t until I picked up this game). I’ve played some wargames in the past, in my younger days, but recently the main focus of my gaming has been much more geared towards Ameritrash games I can play with friends who are not interested in more simulation-like endeavours.

I cannot remember what first made me aware of "Where There Is Discord", I think it could well have been a banner ad here on the geek. Either way, it peaked my interest since The Falklands War is a conflict I have read about in the past, most notably in 'Sharkey' Ward’s "Sea Harrier over the Falklands". This combined with the fact it is a solo-wargame led to me following its development.

The most interesting thing about this game, from my perspective, is the very real feeling of narrative that you get as you play. I am not familiar with other wargames that use an event card system to represent the off-board political double-dealing which has such an impact on the operations of the Task Force, but I found it a fascinating way to ensure no two games are the same. It also really drew me in, making the progression not so much just a list of decisions to make each turn depending on statistical possibilities, but instead a constant balancing act between Whitehall and the lives of the servicemen and women under my command. The constant spectre of political infighting, the International community watching my every move, made these decisions a vital part of my strategy, and not just an added gimmick.

As for the mechanics, after a few turns I found them streamlined and easy to use. Once the order of play is remembered the turns pass quickly (AP aside...), and the combat rules are both abstract enough not to get lost in column upon column of figures, while still creating the need to know what your vessels and weapons systems strengths are. The Excocet rules in particular are very good at creating a horrible amount of tension; I will not quickly forget when I lost my first ship to one. I made very sure not to let it happen again...

WTID is a game with two distinct sections, and even after reading the rules I was surprised at how much the game changed with the beginning of Operation Sutton. With the focus turned to the landings, it suddenly becomes very apparent that all the Harrier sorties you sent to interdict the Argentinean supply where vital, and every days delay in reaching the islands has really stacked the odds against you. The knife-fight feeling of air-raids on San Carlos Water raise an already tense game to the heights of panic, with your AA assets struggling to repel continuous attack while your assault forces struggle up the beach, against often entrenched enemies.

As I said at the top of this review, I am primarily an Ameritrash gamer, and I attribute this to my enjoyment of creating stories in my games. While WTID is a wargame, it also does an admirable job of provoking responses in its player which often have more to do with a feeling of emersion than a numbers-game, and this was a huge plus point for me. Since playing this game, I have been investigating other solo-wargames to try, so Fifth Column Games will have a lot to answer for once my other half sees my rapidly decreasing bank balance...

Special mention must also be made of the designer support and customer service offered here. The constant updates both here on BGG and also responses to emails have been second to none, and coupled with the fantastic production values of WTID leave me very excited for Codeword: Cromwell.
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Mark Mahaffey
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Thanks, Andy!
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Barry Kendall
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Well said, Andy! Do NOT let this be your last game review!

Your point on the "narrative" qualities of WTID is very sound and important. WTID is head and shoulders above most solitaire games I've played in the way it plants the player firmly in Adm. Woodward's shoes and keeps him/her laced in. The dramatic tension is high on both the political and military fronts and truly, no two games play alike.

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Andy Bultitude
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At the rate I'm going, my next review will be ASL ;)

I have truly turned to the dark side....
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Mike Windsor
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Quote:
Firstly, the traditional disclaimer this is my first review on BGG, so will only be in the form of a short summary and some collected thoughts rather than an in depth look at the rules and game play.


Nothing wrong with your review. Makes me wish WTID was more widely available.
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Dan Hodges
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Thanks, that's a really nice review.

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Andy Bultitude
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Thanks, that's a really great game!
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Ethan McKinney
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Shin00bie wrote:
At the rate I'm going, my next review will be ASL

I have truly turned to the dark side....


If you can find an opponent for a non-solitaire game, I'm very interested in your reaction to the Combat Commander games. Combat Commander: Europe, Combat Commander: Mediterranean, Combat Commander: Pacific
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Andy Bultitude
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elbmc1969 wrote:
Shin00bie wrote:
At the rate I'm going, my next review will be ASL ;)

I have truly turned to the dark side....


If you can find an opponent for a non-solitaire game, I'm very interested in your reaction to the Combat Commander games. Combat Commander: Europe, Combat Commander: Mediterranean, Combat Commander: Pacific


Actually, Combat Commander has been one of the games I've been looking into, probably for the same reason you've mentioned it - ""Events" both good and bad will occur at random intervals to add a bit of chaos and uncertainty to each player’s perfect plan.".

As my review suggests, this is the kind of thing I like in a game. I've also been interested by Conflict of Heroes, which sounds like a game system I'd enjoy (more for the complexity level in this case).
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Jack Smith
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Another game you may want to look at is RAF: The Battle of Britain 1940 This is an update of a much older game which was for solo play.
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