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Re: [GZG] Game designer Charles S Roberts passes

From: Phillip Atcliffe <atcliffe@n...>
Date: Fri, 03 Sep 2010 22:59:51 +0100
Subject: Re: [GZG] Game designer Charles S Roberts passes

Gzg-l mailing list  On 03/09/2010
16:43, Allan Goodall wrote:
> On Fri, Sep 3, 2010 at 4:06 AM, Tom B < 
> <>> wrote:
>	[...] /Air War/ was way too complex a modelling of reality to be
>     a fun game. Most of our fights didn't resemble dogfights so much
>     as high speed jousts with no actual shooting.
> It's infamous for that. It came out during SPI's phase of wanting 
> incredible realism. I remember the ad for /Air War/, where they 
> describe a dogfight and list the rule number that went with what 
> happened in reality. It was supposed to instill you with a sense of, 
> "Oooo, they thought of everything." It just instilled a sense of dread

> in me, as one of the rules numbers was in the 40s.
> Their earlier game /Foxbat and Phantom/ was well received. I suspect 
> they wanted to take F&P and make it /really/ advanced.
Was it that well-received? From memory of an article in /Moves/, SPI 
didn't seem to think so at the time. F&P was felt to be too coarse in 
its basic scale (hex size and turn length) to model complex manoeuvring 
properly (not to mention the rather clunky mechanics used to represent 
vertical motion; what might have worked for WW1 and even WW2 aircraft 
didn't translate well to jet fighters), so they went to the opposite 
extreme for /Air War/, coupling it with a morass of decidedly odd rules 
to cover 3-D flight (plus one "special manoeuvre" -- the infamous 
"Lateral Rudder Roll" -- that no-one, including military and aerobatic 
pilots, has ever been able to tell me exactly what it is supposed to

JD Webster neatly split the difference in scale with /Air Superiority/ 
and came up with new mechanics for an air game that made playing both 
easier and much more fun; they also translated well, with a change of 
scale, to WW2 in the /Fighting Wings/ series.


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