The panel welcomes Mark H. Walker to the round table for a bruising discussion of his upcoming squad based wargame Lock N Load: Heroes of Stalingrad. Bruce and Julian dominate an unusually combative conversation, which only shows how much we care. What is the place of narrative in war games? Do designers overestimate how intuitive their designs are?

Apologies for the sound quality here. In spite of a perfect sound test earlier in the day, Mark’s satellite internet was not up to the task later that night so he had to phone in. Then the recording somehow made Troy’s comments appear three seconds later than they actually happened, making editing a real pain in the ass and borking the Dominions 3 discussion altogether. (Short version, Bruce didn’t send his turn but notice he was attacked by Julian’s deer men.)

Lock N Load
Matrix Games

Direct download: ThreeMovesAhead027.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:56pm EDT

Troy, Tom and Bruce spend an hour talking about city builders as ant farm games. Why didn’t they talk about Dawn of Discovery two weeks ago? What’s up with Cities XL? Is SimCity Societies a neglected classic or a misfire of epic proportions?

And, most importantly, does Bruce know any games made after 1984?

Direct download: ThreeMovesAhead026.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:57pm EDT

Troy, Tom and Julian start with Hearts of Iron 3, detour through a bunch of other WW2 games and somehow end up making less sense than usual. Learn why Thin Red Line is Tom’s favorite WW2 movie, why Julian thinks everyone who bailed on Axis & Allies in college should give it another chance, why our Dominions 3 game has stalled and what Troy sounds like after a long train trip and a couple of pints.

Troy’s Hearts of Iron 3 review
Tom’s single post on HoI 3 so far
Scott Jennings’ early thoughts on the game
Time of Wrath
Making History
Commander: Europe at War
War Plan Pacific

Direct download: ThreeMovesAhead025.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:29pm EDT

East India Company and other trading themed games take center stage this week. Listen as a full panel talks about where Nitro’s sailing business sim stands and falls. Is it possible to make cargo interesting? Are trading games pointless with a computer opponent?

Tom’s final Fidgit diary on East India Company
Direct download: ThreeMovesAhead024.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:02pm EDT