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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 5:07 pm 
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I don't know- this one is a consideration your host has to make: public domain vs what is copyright protected. In my own case, I no longer take someone's word for it, mainly because I am not terribly into receiving cease and desist letters.

I guess my point is- understand what it is that you are potentially going to be asking someone to do.

It sounds like a good idea, but it can also be problematic, so fully consider all aspects. I imagine Scott would be on top of things like that considering his background.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 5:22 pm 
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Well it is hard to tell, it could be that people would join the club for it's resources only and are just not really interested in the main aspects of the club. That would lower the bar and as the club strifes for a certain level it would obviously be bad to have such people joining the club.
But then again it could very well be that we get people into the club that would otherwise not have come here but are very interested in the clubs main aspects, the arsenal of tabletop & boardgame players could be such people if we add their games to our club.

Whatever is added, we should be able to sort people out that lower the bar if we also demand a certain level of participation from the club members like regular musters would do.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:04 pm 
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Mark Hornsby wrote:
I would like to add to this discussion if I may.

I agree the army structure needs to stay it's what makes this club what it is.

There has and continues to be a lot of restructuring going on to make the armies better, their webpages exciting, colourful and inviting. New medals and awards. In LGA a new Guard Corp. Tournaments have started and I dare say will continue.

What I think the club needs to look at is the expansion into other aspects of the hobby. Napoleonic wargaming is the second biggest period after Ancients, it even beats WW2. There are hundreds of wargames clubs throughout the world playing everything from boardgames to table top wargames, almost a quarter of them are in isolated areas and it might be the only club for hundreds of miles but on top of that how many people don't have that access to a club. In this day and age we can play a computer game over the internet why not a boardgame or a table top wargame. We pay out 40 dollars for a computer game yet 40 dollars gets a sizeable army in 2mm, 3mm, and 6mm which could refight most battles. Boardgames are the same.

I have a wealth of information, I have over 10,000 uniform plates plus more I can get off the net. I have over 500 battlefield and campaign maps. I have over 900 various orders of battle as well as army structure. I have a book now long out of print detailing every country, state, duchy, etc. that took part in the Napoleonic Wars with their structure, from 1805 to 1815. There are loads of information on the internet but most people don't know where to look. Why not create a resource or library so this information could be tapped into by members and advertise it

We need to put ourselves out there and I know this is something Scott has been doing and I will say the LGA is changing to accommodate this. John can you contact me, I'd like to discuss something with you.

This club is by no means stagnant or dying, it is a wonderful place and I am truly humbled to have met the many people on here, no matter what side they choose to join. (Obviously LGA, best) but this is a growing hobby and I think there is room in the club for all types whether you want to refight Borodino on a computer or traverse the vineyards of Italy on a table top wargame or refight the entire peninsula war on a boardgame or just get information for your model diorama or research into a battle.

I understand people are needed to help run things but by looking at each system we use we can use program and web design to take this from us. Make life easier.



I'm not against this idea, but I would be very careful about it. You better get permission in writing for anything like that you want to host here that is not clearly public domain.

Take it from someone that had to pay a $500 settlement last year because one of my graphic designers used a copyrighted image on a client's site that I was not aware of. The original invoice was for $8,000, so it could have been much worse.

Any violations would fall on whoever the domain is registered to.

Also, like was already mentioned, that can eat up a lot of storage space on the server here. Not sure how much room there is to play with. I am not sure if there are any bandwidth restrictions either. That can be an even bigger problem. Make sure your webcoder knows how to tag images so they cannot be embedded elsewhere by someone on their sites but use up your bandwidth calling them from here.


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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 11:06 am 
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Whatever the club decides to do .... if we look to expand lets consider that when we did add in new games (the strategic stuff for instance) we need to look at whether it really was worth the additional time that it took to build the pages and manage them. Did the new member that joined stay with the club? Are those games being played?

We almost need to add in a new "department" to the club that can "recon" these games - that is play them - to find out if they work in a club format like ours AND is the game being supported AND is there a good following for the game.

I would hate to see us add in a game, spend all the effort to do so only to find out that it gets dumped by the players in under six months.

Total Wars Napoleonic game seems to have a good following - just using this as an example - not a suggestion.

On the other hand there are games that came out - folks here were very enthusiastic about it - and the game eventually ran into problems.

I have a newer Napoleonic series that I will resume working on in December that I want to release with a major online software company. Once it is released I will be happy to walk people through it. Its a brigade level game. This company we are going to release with has a good reputation for their ability to host the product. They also offer discounts on their games.

What I am saying is that even with a series I help produce we need to look at it from a longer term basis. We dont want a lot of "dead branches" on the NWC tree that just are not bearing "fruit." It means that someone(s) spent a lot of their own personal time setting up the web pages and database to support the new product only to find that it is not being used.

Note: I did 95% of the scenario lists for the database for the now defunct Panzer Campaign Club. Those games got played. I never felt like I was wasting my time. Even though the club folded the games got played.

However, had someone told me "Bill - we need this game added ..." It only got 2 games played in the entire year ... and then they wanted me to add in five more games in the series with similar results .....

I would tell them to jump in the lake! ROFL

Bottom line: there needs to be sufficient endorsement and follow up participation in any new product line we add to the NWC or its a waste of our time. I am not saying we stick with JUST the JTS games. I am saying that any new product added needs more support than just six members. I would like where the club forum lights up with "We REALLY need this game" and like 30 members follow with replies with the same kind of enthusiasm. That goes for any series I work on in the future too!

The same goes for if we are approached (or approach) a group of folks and the concept is to add them to the club "en masse" - we did that with a club before (Scott Ludwig did a marvelous job on that) and it did add in new members. What is the assessment of that? Are the games still being played? The ACWGC has several sections on their "Opponents Wanted" section that are for the strategic ACW games. Just saying that they seem to have found a balance. Whatever they are doing there that works we may want to bring over to here. Scott and Ernie and others may want to weigh in on that topic.

I would love to be able to play the old "Napoleon at War Quad" by SPI using Cyberboard with someone - house rules added in - or Kevin Zucker's series of games ... in THIS club. Or build my own Napoleonic battle series for boardgame and use Cyberboard to play it - and have it part of the club. Again - it would take some "recon time" by the admin folks here.

I think it would be a blast to use Zucker's maps and any of the battle programs to play an entire campaign. Move the counters on the map and then fight a battle - built using a scenario editor - and note the results and move on.

The ACWGC had "Fight the War" and it was popular. I dont know how many people participated but the thread on the forum had over 2000 replies I believe!

"Fight the Napoleonic Wars" would be fun. A thread for each campaign and you could have six players from each side of the club participate. Have them command a corps or wing of troops.

Again, it all comes down to who is willing to manage these things. Having been on the management side of things - I basically have run an entire club of 80 members - it was a lot of fun but in the end the game series (Musket and Pike) stagnated - no new products came out. I learned my lesson then. Only add in a new series once its become "mature" (that is at least two games in the series). The 1776 game being the one and only exception I think ..... the CCC ran with that for several years before 1812, F&IW and Mex-Am War came out.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 11:45 am 
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Well the problem is that if we want to add games but wait for enough members to ask for it we likely will add no more games.
I came here because of the HPS/JTS games, if they would not have been part of the club why should I have joined it?
And others will also not join unless they see that we support their games.
So I think the club is the first who has to deliver and then we can only hope it was worth the effort and yields us new members.

Maybe we should think about how to bring new games here without all the trouble to fully integrate them into the club, some kind of Beta if you want to call it that way. And if the response is good we full integrate it, if not we leave it running and see if it dies or if it holds on, than we could still think about integrating it into the club.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 9:01 pm 
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Thanks to all who replied so far, there's a lot of good comments! It'll probably take me a while to reply to every detail, but I did want to comments on a few things.

A couple folks mentioned the inclusion of tabletop and board games, some also mentioning what I think are ways to convert data. I forget at the moment how Vassal works, but I think it is what Cameron McOmish at the ACWGC has proposed as well. A similar idea, one of which Ernie's input on it, being who manages the ACWGC's DoR, was that not all the data is loaded up front into the DoR and is done as games are played. Not sure if that'd work for Dominik, but that's at least an idea for what is being looked at in the ACWGC.

Bill mentioned a concept of using the boardgame data and creating the battles via the scenario editor and then noting the result and continuing. Reminds me of Frank Hunter's Campaigns on the Danube, where he literally mentioned the option for doing battle via the HPS games and then you would load in the losses into his game and continue playing, which was a strategic game overall. Sadly it never converted right from XP and never got the support it needed. But Bill's idea is a good one.

Mike Friedman mentioned an idea that was really neat too:


Mike Friedman wrote:
One thing that could be done to make the armies have some sort of meaning is to utilize the games to have some sort of persistent war going on. This would take some thought and work to initially organize, but probably would not be all that hard to maintain afterward.

So you pick some theatre of war.... say it starts with Prussia and Austria. Players from each army can play one another in any of the titles from Eckmuhl, Wagram, and Jena-Auerstedt. Play as many games as you want, whatever scenarios you want. Or there could be a set batch of scenarios you have to choose from. Give a time frame such as 6 months.

If the Allies win more games than the French, we use the Leipzig and Bautzen games next followed by the Campaign 1814 title. If the French win, we move into Russia. If the Allies win in France or the French win in Russia, that side wins the war.

This is just a really simple outline. Someone could think of a more complex setup and flow than this.

You could have a persistent war in this way that lasts 18-24 months. At the end of that, start over and do it again.

It makes what side you are on matter and might generate some interest to bring in new members.



This is a pretty cool idea and one that was somewhat similar to a concept I had many years ago. One of the main things is we just need some folks to organize these things. It doesn't need to be an elaborate effort, it can be really simple. Jim Pfluecke's Marengo Challenge is a good example of this, put together something simple and get folks interested. Mike's concept is a pretty easy one and wouldn't be too difficult to manage. I also think we should try for more than 1 tournament going at a time. Especially if they are similar in concept. Folks might recall the old days when the ACWGC used to be on fire every year with Tournaments! But yes, Fight the War was awesome among many other goods ones.

Mark alluded to some stuff being shuffled around a bit that might play in well to several of these suggestions or a combination of them.

On some of Mark's other comments, I do think we need to do more from the historical end. Kind of combine some of his and the other folks comments. We do need to be careful what we put up, there is a certain threshold to be careful about when dealing with a copyrighted work and we should be mindful of that. Out of print is tricky too in a way, but stuff that is old and more open can be looked at for sure. Pinterest is actually a source that could be looked at to find these things to share. It is also a possibility for off server hosting of images and heavy load content. I've started using it last year some time and have come to like it. Was mad at Photobucket and should be careful to make sure our content that could be posted to Pinterest is backed up with people on their PC's as to avoid a Photobucket like issue or even worse. There certainly is no reason why we can't look to leverage these ideas.

Bill mentioned another thing:


Bill Peters wrote:
The CCC has bounties. Each leader captured is a bounty and there is a bounty form that the members turn in. Each month there are Bounty points handed out. I never got into that but there are those who love it. It's still going on in the CCC too.

I think guys like Ernie and Scott (and others) that are leaders in all three of the clubs may have some good ideas too. They have perspective of what works and what doesn't.



The Bounty is a great little thing and it is still ongoing, since 2003, with a gap between 2011 and 2013. It was underutilized last year, but it has picked up a little since. But overall it has had a lot of success and the concept is so simple: http://www.wargame.ch/1776/Bounty/index.html

I tried the idea here in 2011 or so and made it too complicated. I've since took over the CCC one and would simply employ that as the concept, except for make the points given a bit higher. This is a pretty easy "win" for us to start with.

I hope to have more comments soon, but everyone has some great ideas so far!

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:22 am 
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Christian Hecht wrote:
Well the problem is that if we want to add games but wait for enough members to ask for it we likely will add no more games.
I came here because of the HPS/JTS games, if they would not have been part of the club why should I have joined it?
And others will also not join unless they see that we support their games.
So I think the club is the first who has to deliver and then we can only hope it was worth the effort and yields us new members.

Maybe we should think about how to bring new games here without all the trouble to fully integrate them into the club, some kind of Beta if you want to call it that way. And if the response is good we full integrate it, if not we leave it running and see if it dies or if it holds on, than we could still think about integrating it into the club.


Christian - don't be so negative about this. Its simple - back in 1998 several of us approached Pierre and Steve about forming a new club - this one. The games - the Battleground series at that time - were VERY popular. So the club was formed based on those games popularity alone.

Ok - lets say a new grand tactical game comes out on the Napoleonic Wars. 10 of our members buy it and report that its a great game. Then we find that the game has a huge following. Or lets say Ernie Sands buys it and heavily endorses that we add it into the inventory.

I would think that the game would be added in right away.

However, .... lets say that "The Battle of Napoleon," a fictitious title, comes out and 6 members like it. However, it has code problems. A lot of customers are upset about it. They post about it on the company's forum but little is done to fix things.

Is that a game we would want to add just to attract people? In that case the club would want to wait and see if the programmer fixes the problems. Otherwise we could end up with a game in the inventory that eventually gets dropped because of poor support.

On the other hand ... there are games out there that might qualify right away. And the idea of VASSAL games would be interesting too. There are a lot of board games out there that might be of interest to the club members. Command and Colors: Napoleonics by GMT Games has a VASSAL or Cyberboard module available. Very popular game system. Quick play Napoleonics. Check it out here:

http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module ... apoleonics

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:24 am 
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If I remember correctly, there are Vassal and Cyberboard modules available for the La Bataille series of Napoleonic games and also Simmons Games' Bonaparte at Marengo and Napoleon's Triumph.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:29 am 
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Cool, Paul. Always enjoyed playing the La Bataille series.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:17 pm 
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What is the difference between Vassal and Cyberboard?

@Bill Peters
Well the late 90's were a good time for many things, today time for a hobby is precious as gold for many people.
I see it in other clubs, what was busy years ago is now almost dead.
I regarding game releases it's not so different, if not for you and JTS I'm not sure if wouldn't have seen any Napi computer game in the recent years.
So that we see suddenly a game appear that draws the attention of enough people is unlikely.
I think it's more likely that we can add existing games that look promising and advertise this addition to our club so that it draws the attention of the games player base and make them join.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 4:21 pm 
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VASSAL is a Java based online program. They host the game and you just have to get the files. You actually can play a game live if I am not mistaken.

Cyberboard is a free boardgame utility. You can get Cyberboard modules for a lot of the boardgames that have been published. Some of the modules are free but for those game made by GMT Games and others there is fee for the module.

I have played games using Cyberboard and it was a lot of fun. The card driven games that GMT Games makes are supported by a third-party website. The card decks are dealt out by the program and the dice rolls are done by the program as well.

With a little practice favorite board games can be played by opponents via the internet.

Cyberboard has a game file much like our gamefiles. I forget if there is a replay feature. I think a log of moves is included.

I tried to setup a game of SPI's "Conquistador" once but it never got started. One of our players dropped out due to family issues. It was one of my favorite games that SPI published in their magazine and we played it in our club many times. Great MP game. Each player is trying to establish colonies while at the same time picking the right time to disrupt their opponent's chances at victory. Attrition and native uprisings do a good job of reducing a colony too! :)

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:27 pm 
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Paul Synnott wrote:
If I remember correctly, there are Vassal and Cyberboard modules available for the La Bataille series of Napoleonic games and also Simmons Games' Bonaparte at Marengo and Napoleon's Triumph.


Music to my ears - I am considering getting back into the La Bataille series -made a mistake about 15 years ago selling off their 4 on the Waterloo Campaign -and since they have started republishing them: Ligny and Quatre Bras are on the to get list (and waiting for Mt St Jean and Wavre). :)

My sense, in the wider boardgaming community, is that Vassal is more used than Cyberboard, although essentially they do the same thing - also same as HPS' ADC (although who knows if they ever will release version 3 --- rhetorical question... the point being SDC 2.0 is dated by comparison to both Vassal and Cyberboard. Anyway that is just my sense from having hung around the boardgaming community. I am not sure how either works- although you can basically get digital copies of maps with modules for either.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:15 pm 
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S_Trauth wrote:
Paul Synnott wrote:
If I remember correctly, there are Vassal and Cyberboard modules available for the La Bataille series of Napoleonic games and also Simmons Games' Bonaparte at Marengo and Napoleon's Triumph.


Music to my ears - I am considering getting back into the La Bataille series -made a mistake about 15 years ago selling off their 4 on the Waterloo Campaign -and since they have started republishing them: Ligny and Quatre Bras are on the to get list (and waiting for Mt St Jean and Wavre). :)


I'm not sure you even need to own the games now, as they are published online and available for free download. With the counters etc included with the Vassal module, you might not need to buy anything. I did download a couple them once, but the rules looked like hard work and for those scales I'd prefer the Napoleon's Battles or Age of Eagles miniatures rules sets anyway, which have the brigade as the manoeuvre unit.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:45 am 
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I installed Vassal last night to see how it works. There is a learning curve to it like any other GUI and I need to learn it as I may publish games via VASSAL. Its very popular and would boost my presence in the wargaming community.

I may actually publish a game via VASSAL - see how its received - then publish with a company like GMT Games. The popularity of the VASSAL module might help drive sales on the board game front. It seems to be sort of working both ways these days. Folks want both a VASSAL and/or hard copy of a game.

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 Post subject: Re: NWC Future vision
PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:52 am 
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I wanted to add: we had a NWC Navy at one time. We played the Talonsoft "Age of Sail" game. The navy flourished for a short while and then floundered (pun). But while it was alive it was a lot of fun. Other than the "grappling bug" in the AoS game it was a fun simulation to play.

Salvo came out years later but it was slower. However, it was more accurate.

I love ship to ship games and always hope that someone will release another "top down" ship game eventually.

BG Schleuter and I used to play a lot. Like myself, he loved the naval games.

If a naval game has "clock" you can use to track the start and finish of the battle then you can assign "turns" to it either based on 10 or 15 min. turn format. Thus a 3 hour naval battle would be equal to 18 turns using a 10 min. format. Then just plug that into the club scoring formula. "How many turns played?" Answer = 18. Total turns possible might be high to allow for long battles but a max number would be necessary too so that people try and bring a conclusion to the "running fight." In AoS if the surviving ships got enough of an interval between their pursuers I think that the game would end automatically based on an "Escape Algorithm."

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http://friendsofwargaming.com/support-bill-peters.html


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