To Ogre or not to Ogre!


Another update.


And more:

Fulfilling the promises of the Ogre Designer’s Edition Kickstarter campaign proved to be an ongoing theme for the year. Steve Jackson Games and Auroch Digital entered an agreement to produce an Ogre-based computer game, which in turn should fulfill the $300k stretch goal, even if we are a few years late from our initial projection. The hope and expectation is that we can announce a release at some point this year.


Oh for fuck’s sake. Let’s try again -

Hm, how to parse that:

The hope and expectation is that (we can announce a release) (at some point this year).

  • or

The hope and expectation is that (we can announce) a (release at some point this year).


I would bet they mean the first of those two.



Ogre Video Game

Randy and Steve have been spending more and more of their time with Auroch on the unit artwork, and Drew is reviewing the game scenarios this week. I’m being told that everything is on schedule, and as soon as I can convince Randy and Steve to give us some screenshots from the game, we’ll post here.

  • Phil Reed


This is gonna be one lame computer game, even if it works perfectly and has a magic interface.


Why do you hate me? :)


I just makes sense, though, right? There isn’t a whole lotta gameplay in Ogre, which doesn’t mean it’s not cool - it just isn’t a game with a lot of depth. So what better way to show off that lack of depth by taking all the tactile elements out and leaving the machine to do all the work. “I fire.” “I knock off two treads.” “The main gun destroys a GEV.” It’s like Panzer Corps only with simpler mechanics.

Then they will have to write an AI, because imagine playing such a simple game and having the computer make dumb moves. Which it will do, because. How bad will that feel?

I’m serious, man. Just let this one go. If it comes out and ends up giving everyone magic socks then we can all bask in its unexpected glory. But I’ve already dismissed this one. My childhood days playing a black-and-white paper version were so precious to me. The big designer box is an adult reminder and nice thing to take out of the closet every now and then and feel twelve years old again. But a PC game? … c’mon, man! :)


I never even bought OGRE back in the day, but loved GEV. Though I mostly played it by myself. OGRE just seemed too simple what with one big OGRE vs lots of little tanks/infantry/whatever.
Are there any GEV-like scenarios where it’s more of an even battle between similar armies?


I have nothing but the greatest respect for your opinions. I hope you don’t mind if I hope you are completely wrong.


Oh, that will make two of us! Believe me, I don’t want to be right. But I lost my optimism for this sort of thing somewhere around Squad Leader. Bookmark this, and if you’re right, make a giant celebratory post and I will join you :)


Done. And if it sucks I will bow to your prescience.


If it sucks we can just be disappointed together. Although I will be somewhat less disappointed than you as I am not so appointed in the first place.


Oh. You noticed that, eh? ;)


Dear Brooski,

Please track down the first OGRE (the one Origin did, back in the 80s) computer game, and play it via emulation. The AI played a mean OGRE. In fact, the original box included a separate little booklet describing how the OGRE AI did its thing.

Oh, my sweet, summer child. Even a basic game of Ogre MK V vs. The World is practically chess-like in its openings, midgame, and late game (hope you know how to use infantry!) Sure, I mean it can be boring if the OGRE player just rams straight up the middle into a howitzer trap, but that should never happen.

And even if you don’t play with OGREs and just focus on the conventional units, then you’ve still got a pretty good game of Panzer Leader (which nearly every wargame in the 70s had its roots in).


You mean this one?

I’ve been there, my brother. BEEN THERE. I was so excited when I bought that (for an apparently insane $39.95) that I very likely wet myself. And I don’t mean in preparation for licking an envelope. 64K WAS REQUIRED. Holy jeez.

I don’t recall the AI being bad, which I agree means it must have at least been decent. Come to think about it harder, I do recall being pretty frustrated sometime with that game, which means I was probably losing.

[quote=“scharmers, post:296, topic:69065, full:true”]

Oh, my sweet, summer child. Even a basic game of Ogre MK V vs. The World is practically chess-like in its openings, midgame, and late game (hope you know how to use infantry!) Sure, I mean it can be boring if the OGRE player just rams straight up the middle into a howitzer trap, but that should never happen.[/quote]

Yeah, I agree that there was a lot more to moving an Ogre straight up the map to the Command Post, but please, that GEV dance is in no way some kind of chess surrogate. That’s the kind of factor-counting, odds-manipulating gameplay that passed for depth back then, because that’s what we had. The universe of comparison was so small. So we imbued things with a lot of depth and meaning that might not have really had it. Sorry - they had lots of meaning. The time I spend with my friend Tom (no relation) in jr high school playing Car Wars is priceless. But Imma not wanna play that so much today. I should see what Tom is up to, ya think? Nah.

I gotta disagree with ya there on two points, Chief: (1) Panzer Leader/Panzerblitz had spotting rules, which is what made them so controversial (and gave them their sometimes anomalous gameplay - the “Panzerbush” nickname was not a German porn title), and (2) I have zero interest in playing Panzer Leader today. OMG man! The thought! The very thought!


Well I join the others in hopeful anticipation of the OGRE computer game. What the hell, it don’t cost me nothing.


So I’m at a Star Trek con in1976. I’m walking around. And I see this guy at a table. I’ve never played a hex based game before. Dude has a b/w map and a few counters. I go over and ask what it is. He says its a game called ogre. One big unit and a few smaller units. He asks if I want to play. I say sure. He says he will play the one unit. I will play the rest. He shows me the die and the simple table that shows hits and damage.

He starts at the top. I start at the bottom with a few units. At the time it was just heavy tanks and missile tanks.

We play. I kill his ogre. He is blown away.

That is the first game I ever lost, he says. He shakes my hand. What’s your name. I tell him, Rich. He says, I’m Steve. Good game.

No shit. I beat Steve Jackson at Ogre when he was first designing it.


The post-hearting button is broken or I would be mashing it right now.

The Great Like Experiment of 2017

Ha, that is too awesome. I’d be thrilled to meet Steve Jackson, let alone beat him at one of his own games.