To Ogre or not to Ogre!


This is awesome. Playing Steve Jackson while he was designing his first game.

The first editions of OGRE had a pure-cheese min/max strategy involving GEVs that was pretty much unbeatable against Ogres. There was also a four-howitzer defense that was deliciously cheesy, as well. Later editions toned down GEV movement and HWZ stats to specifically to kill that cheese.


Shrug, I disagree. I prefer simple, straightforward decision loops over the “spam the players with shiny chrome!” distractions that seem to be par for the course today.


Yeah, my first Ogre encounter was at something like this at about that time. Still have the Micro game.


Actually now that I think about it, it was in 1972. I graduated high school in 1976 But my first Trek Con was in 1972. That would make more sense. Well memory is fleeting.


Hey man, I hear what you’re saying: seems like we played and enjoyed the same games, and I know exactly what you mean and appreciate it. I just think that there is a way to give games more “meaningful” decisions as well as to differentiate these decisions better. I loved The Russian Campaign, and that was nothing if it wasn’t a straight-up factor-counting bonanza. Make one mistake on defense and the Stukas come in and it’s an automatic victory and now you have panzers in your Soviet pantaloons on the second impulse. But as I think Carl Paradis has shown in the No Retreat series (and in the brilliant solo game The Barbarossa Campaign), you don’t need to jam it all up with a million numbers to make it deep. When the calculations get so minute that you need to decide among 20 units where this one factor will go, your cost is the time the non-phasing player (such a 70s term!) spends getting bored. When Euros showed us that constant player interactivity didn’t have to sacrifice decision depth, wargame designers smartly followed suit. I don’t see stuff like cards as “chrome” - more like decision sharpening. I’m still up for a Vance Von Borries monster, where I can make and eat a sandwich during the first half of my opponent’s turn, but that stuff is best with a buddy where you’re examining the history as much as playing the game.

I also acknowledge that I am such a contrarian at heart that if someone had come in here running down Ogre, I would have immediately posted a manifesto detailing exactly how fast the kids needed to be vacating my lawn, and the consequences for failure to do so.

Anyway, if you bring that black-and-white set over, I’ll play as long as you want. I can even pull out the big set when we get tired of that. I even ordered the miniatures.



You guys are fun to read. I’ve got no one to play OGRE with, hoping to teach my kids how to play soon. So I’ll take my vicarious thrills where I can find them.


I went to Trek Cons in New York City in '72 and '73. During summer vacation. Were you in NYC?


Indeed I was.


Wow. We should have done a meet-up.


Your avatars are made for each other :)


No doubt ;). And sorry for the thread derail, but Paramount should be kissing the asses of people like @RichVR and me. In the early 70s, there was only the original series, just a few years after cancellation, and a Saturday morning cartoon version – no movies, no TNG, just a bunch of fans devoted enough to take part in cons centered around an already cancelled series. That might not seem unusual today, but at the time it was. That early fandom, including fanzines, fan fic and some LARPing, opened Paramount’s eyes that this franchise might have some lasting appeal…

Now… back to Ogre!


No, we’ll play this:


“That thing has a maw large enough to swallow a dozen star ships!”


Any time. One of my favorites.


Thank god computer games were invented…


While I’ll certainly agree with that sentiment, there is something to be said for games like Star Fleet Battles. It was the first time that your favorite TOS ships were solidly defined. You had the ship sheets which you put in document protectors. You had a set of rules that you could add sections to, to make things more complex. And in my case, it taught me about grease pencils.

I’d say that SFB was on the cusp of paper to computer play. Complicated, but not impossible to master. Needing a certain kind of gamer to play. If you didn’t enjoy it you didn’t play it. If you did, you played it a lot. You bought expansion after expansion. And so did your friends.

I miss playing games like SFB or my other favorite, Starship Troopers. Sometime, paper is your friend. :)


Star Fleet Battles is way too much book keeping for me these days. What a headache.


Moving forward! We are at milestone 11 of 14, and if there are no hiccups we will see a Steam release in October 2017. We are very happy with the graphics Auroch has developed, and we are looking forward to testing the game interface and matching wits with the AI, both in the classic scenarios and in a brand new ten-level campaign written by Drew, with creative interference by yours truly.


When I was a teenager playing SFB in the mid-80’s, almost every game I played with my friends ended up in a huge argument over the rules. Good times!


Who is subscribing to Ogrezine???

/raises hand