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Please answer the following questions about this issue and your recent game play.

1. What did you like most about this issue of Modern War magazine?

2. What was the most recent game from Modern War that you have played?

3. What did you like most about that game?

4. On a scale of 0-10 (0 being the worst issue, 5 being an average issue, and 10 being the best issue you have read), how would you rate this issue of Modern War?

5. What was the main factor in your issue rating?

6. On a scale of 0-10 (0 being the worst game, 5 being an average game, and 10 being the best game you have read), how would you rate the game in this issue of Modern War?

7. What was the main factor in your game rating?

8. How many times did you play the game with another player?

9. How many times did you play the game by yourself?

10. Would you be willing to complete a survey about our pledge/pre-order program at a later time?

GAME PROPOSALS

Please take a few minutes to review the game proposals and select the ones you would like to see us publish. This feedback is the most important source for determining what games we will be working on for future issues. In addition, we’re seeking your input on additional ideas we’re considering.

The current line-up for Modern War is:

#30 Operation Enduring Freedom (solitaire)
#31 Combat Vet
#32 Operation Musketeer
#33 ISIS War
#34 Opaque War: Ukraine
#35 Mike Force
#36 Cold Start: India-Pakistan War
#37 Putin Moves South
#38 Soyuz ’81 (Soviet intervention in Poland)
#39 Axis of Evil: Iran
#40 First Chechnya War 1994-96
#41 Sixth Fleet
#42 The Dragon That Engulfed The Sun
#43 Siharan Jihad
#44 Desert One War
#45 Red Dragon Fighting
#46 Ukraine War

 

 

 

Please help us select the future games for Modern War by ranking the following sets of proposals using the rankings of 1 to 10 (1 being your first choice down to 10 being your tenth or lowest choice). Start with the game proposal you have the most interest in seeing in a future issue (mark 1) down, then your second choice (mark it 2), and so on down to the game proposal you have the least interest in seeing (mark it 10). Repeat this ranking process for each of the categories (A=Cold War, B=Contemporary, and C=Near-Future).

COLD WAR
A1. Operation Unthinkable. Based on recently declassified British plans for a proposed-but-never-run 1945 preemptive war against the Soviets, this low-to-intermediate two-player design would use division/corps units (16 mi/hex) to model an Anglo-Allied attack into Soviet-occupied Poland. Recently demobilized German units will be available for use by the Allied player, but only at a high cost in victory points. There will be heavy emphasis on Allied airpower, 1st Allied Airborne Army, and Soviet artillery corps. Ty Bomba
A2. Stalin’s World War III. This low-to-intermediate complexity, alternative history, two-player design would use an area (for oceans) and point-to-point (for land) map of the whole world to model what could’ve happened had Stalin decided to use the Korean War as the launching point for WW3. Units would be armies, fleets, air forces along with some elite task forces, corps and corps equivalents. Turns would each represent three to six months. Ty Bomba
A3. The Taiwan Straits War. On several occasions in the late 1950s Red China attempted military moves against Taiwan, bombarding Nationalist Chinese held islands. These crises were defused in part by the US commitment of air and naval reinforcements to the Far East. But what if the conflict escalated into full-scale war—with the possibility of nuclear weapons being involved? Taiwan Straits War is set in the late 1950s and covers just such a conflict. It will use a variant of the Red Dragon Rising system, with naval, air and ground forces conducting joint operations. Units will start a scenario on their untried side, without players knowing their strengths until engaging in combat – this is due to various issues of reliability for Chinese forces, and untested technologies being employed by the US and its allies. Game map will stretch from Japan to Indochina, with Taiwan in the center, giving the possibility of a wider war. There is also the potential for Soviet intervention. And yes, both sides will have access to nuclear weapons. Joseph Miranda
A4. Angola Insurgency. From 1961 to 1974 the Portuguese conducted a largely successful counterinsurgency against various insurgent movements in Angola. In the end, the collapse of the government at home doomed this effort, but in this game you get a chance to win. The game will be solitaire, with the player controlling Portuguese forces. These include both metropolitan units and forces from the colony itself, many recruited from the African population. This can include elite forces such as paratroopers and SOF. You trade Victory Points (VP representing the political strength of the home government) to build units, enhance operations and conduct PSYWAR. Morale becomes an issue and if your VP goes too low, unit effectiveness declines and there is the possibility for a revolution at home. But if you can get your VP high enough, you will be on the path to victory. There are also contingencies for foreign intervention: you can gain South African air and SOF reinforcements, while the insurgents may receive East Bloc and Organization of African Unity advisers and arms. Each turn will represent one year of operations so you can play through the scenario in an evening. The three major insurgent organizations will be represented: MPLA, UNITA, FNLA. Each will have a different CRT, representing differences in tactics from mass mobilization to terrorism. Joseph Miranda
A5. Chawinda, 17-22 September 1965. The largest tank battle since Kursk pits the Indians on attack against the Pakistanis, where roughly 500 tanks were involved in the battle.  The Indians wanted to penetrate to critical rail lines and cut off Pakistani supply lines. The game system is focused on chit activation and dynamic combat. Indians must grab territory while they can as the UN gets involved in negotiating a cease fire and super power pressure will unpredictably halt the conflict. Harold Buchanan
A6. Block-by-Block. A two-player simulation of the 1968 Battle of Hue. Players must balance the military difficulties imposed by the challenges of constrained urban warfare and unique terrain of the Hue Citadel, with the overriding considerations of each side’s respective political goals. The game employs a straight-forward IGO-UGO system but with significant detail given to the close combat nature of the battle. The rules booklet features several full-color examples of play. Nicolas Edwards
A7. Horn of Africa 1977-1991. This is a simulation of Cold War and post-Cold War era conflicts in Ethiopia, Yemen, Eritrea and Somalia, 1977-1991. Players represent the US and the USSR vying for control of the area and using their proxies (and Cuban troops) to fight each other. Map covers all of the horn of Africa and Southern Arabian Peninsula. Javier Romero
A8. Falklands: The Empire Strikes Back. This two-player game is a more tactical presentation of the Falklands war and will feature ships and aircraft as weapon systems (missiles, radar, sonar, CIWS) rather than just generalized units. This game will be a serious treatment of the naval and air conflict for the Falklands in 1982 between the Royal Navy and Argentinian forces, and only features an abstracted land combat sub-system as an adjunct to the detailed naval/air rules. This game will also include bonus World War I and World War II scenarios featuring German and British ships as a comparative analysis of naval combat around the Falklands throughout the 20th Century. Eric Harvey
A9. Fulda Gap.This two-player recent-past what-if would be a graphic and systemic update of the popular old-SPI design flat-box design, first published back in 1977. This game would feature battalion-level combat with several order of battle options in an alternating actions system. Ty Bomba
A10. Central Front Series. Though presented here as one proposal, if passed by the voters it would actually result in the redesign and reissue of all three games in this series, which originally appeared back in 1980-81: British Army of the Rhine, Hof Gap and Fifth Corps. This redesign would be done at the same 2.5 miles per hex, with companies, battalions and regiments as units of maneuver. Each game could be played alone, or all three could be joined into a single theater-level monster game. The system, while keeping the same much-liked modern operational feel (as defined by 1980s Warsaw Pact vs. NATO hypotheticals) would be streamlined in regard to the originals’ mechanical and procedural complexity. Ty Bomba
Modern (Rank 1 to 10)
B1. Central Asian Fire Brigade: 201st Motorized Rifle Division. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the veteran Russian 201st MRD took on Islamic militants in Tajikistan and became a major power broker in the region. The player will represent the command of the Operational Group of Russian Forces in Tajikistan, which includes the 201st as well as Russian border guard, Spetsnaz and on-call air units. You can also bring in other Commonwealth of Independent State and friendly Tajik forces by expending Mobilization Points (MP). The game system will control a coalition of anti-Russian, terrorist and Islamist forces. Further MP can be gained by winning battles and holding critical bases. The game will also generate special missions such as hostage rescue – you can anticipate these by building up your SOF capabilities. Game map will cover Tajikistan and surrounding frontier zones using a point to point system. Critical regions such as cities and major bases will be represented as multi-point areas. You can conduct raids into Afghanistan to forestall Islamist attacks from that country. There’s also a race to control nuclear weapons sites at the start of the scenario, and the potential employment of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Joseph Miranda
B2. 73 Easting: The 20th Century’s Last Tank Battle. This is a low-complexity yet realistically modeled two-player game of tank-on-tank engagement during the Battle of 73 Easting in the wide open trackless desert of Iraq in 1991. Four US armor platoons of Eagle Troop (2nd ACR) under Capt. McMaster run into nearly twice as many Iraqi tanks arrayed in defensive positions. Surprised and outmatched, the Soviet-era tanks were overrun in less than an hour, but this game presents numerous variables to allow for different possible circumstances. This game will even include a hypothetical Warsaw Pact-vs-NATO scenario that will prove to be the epic showdown of the most lethal tanks of the 20th Century. Eric Harvey
B3. Operation Desert Storm. This game would be a low complexity division-level two-player game of the Coalition’s campaign to expel Iraqi forces from Kuwait in 1991. The game map would encompass all of Iraq so as to include a 2003 Iraqi Freedom scenario, and then an ISIS scenario that would posit a possible future limited American/British return to Iraq to defeat ISIS. There will be a bonus Iran/Iraq war scenario, and even a scenario that will explore Iranian intervention and the specter of a possible nuclear-armed Iran. Eric Harvey

B4. Soviet Fallout: the Upper Karabakh War, 1992-1994.
This is a simulation of one of the conflicts that followed the fall of the USSR: the fight for the Armenian enclave of Upper Karabakh. After gaining independence in 1991, Azerbaijan was engulfed in a pro-Islamist/ Turkish euphoria, and planned to recover the Upper Karabakh enclave by force of arms, reinforcing their army with Turkish advisers, Russian mercenaries and Afghan Mujahideen. The Azeri launched their offensive during the winter of 1992. The Armenians, however, were ready to fight-despite being outnumbered three-to-one. They inflicted the Azeri a series of military defeats, linking up with the Armenian enclave. The Armenians received the support of Russia (the Russians even threatened using nuclear weapons in 1994) while Turkey, Israel and various Gulf monarchies supported the Azeri.

In 1994, after a coup in Azerbaijan which replaced the pro-Turkish Azeri president for another, more amenable to Russian interests, a ceasefire was signed and this conflict became yet another “frozen” war in the post-Soviet space, not much different from the ones in Moldova, Donbass or Georgia, with long periods of neither war nor peace punctuated with occasional clashes, such as the recent combats in Spring 2016.

The Upper Karabakh War uses the Chechnya/Yugoslavia ’91 system to simulate the “full-scale” phase of this conflict, from 1992 to 1994. Units are regiments and brigades or equivalents. Rules cover Turkish and Russian support, internal coups, foreign mercenaries, Azeri human wave attacks, and media war. Javier Romero

B5. World War Africa: Second Congo War, 1998-2003. The deadliest conflict in the World since WWII, involving nine African countries fighting over resource-rich Zaire. Javier Romero
B6. The Surge. A solitaire game of the 2007 US-Iraqi government offensive that defeated the insurgency. You will control various Coalition conventional and SOF units which you then employ against insurgent strongholds. You also can mobilize various Iraqi tribal militias per the Anbar Awakening. You will be up against a wide array of enemy forces, including Al Qaeda in Iraq, so expect some hard fighting. Units are battalions, SOF task forces and insurgent groups. The game is solitaire, with the system controlling the Insurgents. There will be an Insurgent Militancy index that will generate reinforcements and attack bonuses. You can knock the index down via special operations and information warfare, thereby gaining a strategic victory. Joseph Miranda
B7. Legion Para. A solitaire game in which the player commands a French Foreign Legion parachute regiment engaging in missions globally. The game will have two maps. The strategic map will cover most of Africa and the Middle East. The game system will generate crises: everything from hostage rescue to fighting major battles. You then have to equip your regiment with various weapons and gear, organize task forces, and then fly them to the crisis zone. At that point, the game will transition to the tactical level, with several types of terrain representing different tactical situations (seizing airfields rescuing hostages, clearing city blocks, fighting warlords, etc.). You then execute the mission on the tactical level. Depending on your level of success, you gain more points which you can convert to better weapons and gear for future scenarios. The game can be played as individual scenarios or as a campaign covering an entire career. Joseph Miranda
B8. Fallujah: Street Fighting in the Jolan Neighborhood. This two-player game is man-to-man infantry combat during the Second Battle of Fallujah using the low complexity Combat Veteran infantry system. This game will include a platoon of US Marines (from the 3rd Battalion) as they fight their way through some of the toughest defenses in Fallujah (the Jolan neighborhood).  Fortified Al Qaeda insurgents will be encountered around every corner, presenting the Marines with all the challenges of modern urban warfare (snipers, RPGs, IEDs, suicide bombers, etc.) as seen from a platoon leader’s perspective. Eric Harvey
B9. Operation Serval.  The War for Northern Mali, 2012-?. In 2012 Islamists Ansar Dine and AQIM followed the Tuareg Rebellion into Northern Mali. An ineffective Malian Army retreated from Northern Mali in disarray. The insurgents moved toward the capital forcing the Malian government to beg for foreign intervention.  In Operation Serval, one player plays the Insurgent faction including the MNLA (until they turn on the Islamists) while the other player plays the Government and the French Alliance working to stop then reverse the insurgents progress. Utilizing a system similar to Decision Iraq (MW #6) focusing on insurgency/COIN, morale, terrain and changing allegiances. Critical events change momentum: AQIM raids in Algeria, coups, battle hardened Chadian Forces, AQIM / MNLA leaders to hunt and influence drug smugglers. Harold Buchanan
B10. Drone Wars: The Yemen conflict (2014-2016). Players control Government and Saudi-led coalition against Iranian-supported Houthis. Al Qaeda in Yemen are “independent,” but can be used by each player to attack the other player’s forces. Rules cover Saudi and Iranian proxy war, US special ops and drone strikes and tribal infighting. Javier Romero
NEAR FUTURE (Rank 1 to 10)

C1. Visegrad West. Recently, leaders in various central-eastern European countries such as Hungary have voiced their opposition to European Union policies which they believe will lead to the destruction of their unique cultures. Visegrad West shows this conflict breaking out into open warfare between the Visegrad countries (Hungary, Poland, etc.) and the European Union. Both sides will have a spectrum of forces, including high-tech strike units and low-tech paramilitaries. Plus markers will be used for SOF, airpower and cyberwar. Both sides will have an operational index, and they can trade points for reinforcements and the possibility of bringing in allies, including the US and Russia. There is also the potential use of EMPs which can crash opposing systems. Joseph Miranda

C2. Putin Moves East.A strategic game of a near future Russian-Chinese War (in contrast to the operational level game Dragon vs Bear, MW 12). The map will stretch from Central Asia to Korea. Game units will be army level which can break down into tactical groupings of various types. Airpower and SOF will be shown as markers which can provide column shifts and attack enemy lines of communications and strategic targets. Each side will have a Net-centric Warfare index, which will determine its ability to use special tactics. You can attack the enemy’s index via cyberwar and other special operations, plus weapons of mass destruction and possible US intervention. Joseph Miranda

C3. NATO Group North Africa.
This assumes that a radical Islamist movement gains control of much of Libya, Tunisia and Egypt and NATO intervenes with the support of friendly Arab forces. This will see armies fighting over terrain familiar from World War II North Africa wargames—from Tunis to the Nile Delta. While NATO forces will be powerful, the insurgents will have the numbers plus the ability to call upon irregular forces, leading to an asymmetrical situation. Each side will have a set of Command Markers, and picking them will activate a contingent of their forces, modeling the chaos of alliance warfare. Each player will have several Special Command markers that will give them one turn surges of activity. Units will include divisions, brigades and insurgent groups, plus SOF. Units will be rated for their combat power and hyperwar ability—the latter allowing them to use a special combat results table. Airpower will be shown at the operational level and will include cruise missile strikes. Each player will have a secret set of victory conditions, that can include anything from seizing control of the oilfields and critical ports (such as Benghazi and Tobruk) to (for the Insurgents) setting up bases for launching attacks on Europe itself. Joseph Miranda
C4. Objective Moscow, 21C. This two-player game would use an adaptation of the alternating-actions system from Red Dragon Falling. The map would cover all of European Russia over to the Urals and Central Asia. Most units of maneuver would be armies, but there would also be some elite corps and divisions. It would model a possible post-Putin Russian Civil War, complete with the likelihood of massive outside intervention, nukes and other WMD. Ty Bomba
C5. The Second Falklands War.This two-player near-future what-if design will explore the parameters inherent in a new Argentinian attempt to capture the Falklands. The system would be an evolution of the one from Red Dragon Rising. Ty Bomba
C6. Space Wars: Inner Solar System. This is a military-scientific-economic game dealing with a near future struggle for control of the Inner Solar System. The game map will show planetary objects out to the Asteroid Belt, including the major asteroids. Each player will be responsible for putting together a space program in which various types of spacecraft and technologies can be selected and built. Objectives include determining various resources on different worlds, establishing bases to conduct mining operations, and maneuvering to prevent competing forces from gaining an advantage. Weaponry can include dual-purpose technologies. For example, high-powered lasers can be used for both mining and combat. Sensors and electronic warfare are also factors. Players will also have to build a cadre of experienced spacecraft crew via training and/or actual missions. Meantime, political developments back on Earth will have on impact on resourcing and goals. Random events will include solar flares, third party hackers, and similar crises – these can be preempted by conducting advanced research and developing countermeasures. Joseph Miranda
C7. Cyber War. This will be a board game representation of the factors involved in cyberwar. The map will be an abstract map of the “combat zone” modeling the Internet and related information technologies. Each player will have a set of assets representing their critical cyber infrastructure, with varying degrees of security There are also various cyber weapons, such as viruses and defenses. The game will involve using your offensive assets to penetrate enemy systems while fending off enemy attacks. A unique feature is that you may not know if you are under attack. An important element is in determining the enemy’s intentions, which will be represented by a set of tiles. Reveal the tiles and figure out what his victory conditions are. Also involved are various independent cybernetic activists who can intervene on either side, or conduct their own agendas. These will act according to an A.I. – in the game, this will be done by random mechanisms. Joseph Miranda
C8. Africa 2020. This will be a struggle for control of Africa today and in the near future. It will be a multi-player game with the US-Coalition, China, EU, Russia and various independent forces such as warlords and the Islamic State. The game map will cover Africa with various resources and independent forces placed randomly. Players then move into Africa using the full spectrum of operations, starting with ISR to determine the situation on the ground; then they can move up by using SOF and then conventional forces. Other factors include pirates, terrorism and humanitarian assistance missions. Each power will have its own unique objectives. For example, one objective might be resource extraction while another is creating military alliances to fight against Al Qaeda and the Islamic State. The bigger picture will be represented by global level shifts in demand for certain resources. Players will have several overall strategies they can employ: nation building, alliances with warlords and local power brokers, and expeditionary warfare. Information operations will be a major factor in gaining local and trans-national support. Joseph Miranda
C9. The Next American Civil War. The culture of the United States has changed since the first civil war, and there are many theorists that speculate that the United States is headed towards a second civil war—a result of increasingly fragmented cultural, ideological, and political divisions across the country. The Next American Civil War is a serious study of current trends in the country and what may result within about fifty years once the population has shifted in accordance with these trends. The Next American Civil War posits that a serious political crisis has eventually fractured the nation into distinct demographic regions, leading to a complex unfolding of events that eventually results in the military establishing martial law in certain areas, and bad things begin to develop from there, including possible foreign meddling. Eric Harvey
C10. The Dragon and the Hermit Kingdom: The Coming Chinese invasion of Korea. This is a two-player operational game that postulates an eventual Chinese invasion of Korea in the foreseeable future. Given the right circumstances, the Chinese could be compelled to rid themselves of the troublesome North Korean regime. With no fewer than four entire army groups within striking distance of the Korean Peninsula, a Chinese invasion of North Korea would be an irresistible juggernaut. Ironically, however, the potential for a brief nuclear exchange between the collapsing North Korean regime and China is suddenly a very real possibility. If this volatile situation escalates into a wider war, the Chinese would undoubtedly be compelled to drive into South Korea to oust the American presence on the Asian mainland for once and all. Eric Harvey

Thank you for participating!