Nordic Weasel Games

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History Dad plans

Initial test responses to History Dad has been pretty positive. I have some big plans that I won't jinx just yet (game design superstition, the more you talk about something the bigger the chance the universe will align to make it not happen) but the first expansion will be a campaign book covering Poland 1939. 

The intention is a few pages of potted history, unit details with prefigured points costs, tank stats, then delving into a couple of specific battles and making scenarios around them. 

I want to take this opportunity to talk about "national characteristics" in the game. These are something that tends to come and go in game design. Currently we are in a phase where most big games include them. I am going to buck the trend and NOT include them in the main rulebook for a couple of reasons:

First I think a lot of times special unit rules come around because the rules are abstracted to a fairly high degree. With History Dad while the mechanics will be quite simple, they are also pretty tangible. For example we are not going to shy away from having stats for lots of different weapons in the full game (History Dads love their hardware after all), so there's no need to make a special rule for American infantry with M1 rifles: The game rules will already reflect that.

Many other things can be reflected through the simple troop quality and morale systems. The classic set up of 1941 Soviets vs Germans doesn't require any special rules: If you make your soviets Green, they are unable to move and fire which means the Soviet player will have to commit to actions and will be more stumbling and less flexible than their German counterparts. 

Of course the flip side of this is that you are also not forced into a specific path either. The Soviet frontline strength on the eve of Barbarossa was something like 2.5 million soldiers. Were every single one of these "Green"? No, of course not. Some had veteran NCOs and officers, some had seen action in Finland, some just had it together more. They may not be the majority based on most historians assessments, but then a tabletop army is 40 guys out of 2.5 million. They don't have to be slavishly linked to the majority assessment. 

So as a player you can absolutely field a Veteran platoon of Soviet infantry in 1941 if that's what you want to do or what your scenario requires. 

However I also recognise that it can be fun to have a bit more flair and the scenario books will do just that. What we will do here is to delve into a much smaller scale, so the troops in a particular scenario might have a special rule that makes them more shaky or determined or sharp shooting or whatever the situation requires them to be.

We will also include some suggestions for how you can modify the core rules for a specific theatre of operations.