Welcome To The War Room: The Most Popular Tabletop War Games

Lots of kids played with toys in a way that involved interacting with other kids, whether that involved dolls, toy soldiers, or Legos. Being kids, the tendency to disagree on what could or could not be done was often pretty high. I often had arguments with my brother about whether my tanks managed to hit his soldiers, or whether his infantrymen successfully overran my artillery!

That being the case is it any wonder that people came up with sets of rules that defined how to determine whether a hit was successful and how much damage was done? It’s believed that wargaming (beyond chess, of course) first originated around 1780, but didn’t really become widespread until 1898. Here are some of the most popular war games available to everybody today:

Chess

The original tabletop war game! With the earliest form believed to have originated between 280-550AD, chess is hands down the oldest tabletop war game still played today! A solid foundation for critical thinking, chess shows budding tacticians how an army is made up of different units with specialized functions, and forces them to maximize the unique strengths of each piece to win the game.

Warhammer

Whether you prefer the gothic sci-fi of the 40k universe, or the high fantasy version, Warhammer is undoubtedly one of the best and most popular tabletop war games available today. Rather than following chess and giving the players mirrored teams, Warhammer has players build their own army from one of the many unique races or factions, with each one having a signature strength and weakenss.

HeroClix

While it doesn’t use armies in the traditional sense, Heroclix has players build a team of superheroes, super villains, or a mix of the two. Players then try to earn points by knocking out opposing characters. What makes ‘Clix so unique is that rather than having set stats defined by a rulebook, each character has a dial that represents their stats and abilities which change with damage.

With a huge selection of heroes and villains to choose from, Heroclix is a lot of fun that’s easier for younger players to get into as compared to games like Warhammer.

Attack Wing

Attack Wing comes in two different flavors that are distinct enough that they feel like completely different games.

The first is Star Wars which has players put together squadrons of fighters, either with the Rebellion or the Empire, and has them battle. What’s unique about Attack Wing as compared to other war games is that Attack Wing has a more realistic take to movement, with fighters being able to accidentally collide with space debris, or even each other.

The other version is D&D, with players controlling dragons rather than starfighters. The biggest difference comes in the supporting armies that players can field to support their dragons, adding a whole different level of strategy. 

Good Morning, Dave: The Best War Videogames Available

Videogames have grown into an industry that exceeded everybody’s expectations for it. Initially thought to be a passing fad that would die out, videogames are now big enough and bring in enough money to be major contenders in the entertainment industry alongside movies and TV. They’ve grown from simple platformers and puzzle games, to cover a wide range of styles, genres, and themes.

Ever since the early days of gaming, however, games that focused on military warfare have existed. Today’s gaming industry has grown to cover military campaigns across history, as well as fictional settings and timelines. Here are some of my favorite games:

Civilization VI

While Civ doesn’t just focus on the military aspect of building a civilization, your military is a huge part of the game. Even if you aren’t going for a military victory, having a strong army does protect your from the AI that does. Let’s not forget the nuke-happy Ghandi! Usually, a swift military strike is the only way to deal with him before he starts nukung everyone.

Call of Duty series

The Call of Duty series spans a wide range of time periods, from the World Wars, to the Vietnam War, to fictionalized versions of the present and near future.  Each game let’s the player take the role of a soldier from on different sides of the conflicts covered by the game. The best part is the accuracy of the weapons reflecting the actual armaments of the time, as well as some theoretical weapons actually in development.

Command and Conquer: Red Alert 2

While there are a lot of different titles under the Command and Conquer series, none of them are quite as good as the second entry in the Red Alert series of the game. Taking place in a world where Russia is the man antagonist of World War II, the war, thanks to strange technology and evil psychics, has lasted until the modern day. A really fun game that’s held up well for its age, it’s still a must play to this day.

The Warriors series

Wu-force started the Warriors series of games with Dynasty warriors, a fictionalized retelling of The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Later however, it expanded to include feudal Japan, the Trojan War, and some fictional settings as well. The player takes the role of a hero on one side of the conflict and throws you into battles waged by hundreds of men at a time. While not historically accurate, it’s still a fun game.

What’s your favorite war game series? If it has online multiplayer, let me know! Maybe we’ll see each other online!

Let Loose The Dogs Of War: The Best Armies In Fiction

Warfare has always captured human imagination for better or for worse. Whether imagined as oppressive conquerors, stalwart defenders, or spacefaring liberators, armies have figured prominently in literature, movies, and games. Even people who aren’t big fans of armies are now familiar with the basics, thanks to popular media like Game of Thrones.

Some armies are, however, better or more iconic than others. Here’s a list of my favorite fictional armies:

Space Marines

In the grim future of the 40k future, there is only war, and lots of it. And in this grim future of war, nobody wages war better than the Space Marines! Genetically modified super soldiers, these warriors defend humanity against aliens, demons, and mutants. With their massive armor, powerful weapons, and very heavy vehicles and space stations, they are probably the most terrifying fictional army ever.

The Horde

Originally an invading force of Orcs, the Horde has transformed into a coalition of races working together, no longer to invade, but to protect their new homes and allies. Made up of Orcs, Tauren, Elves, Undead, and Trolls, the “new Horde” has faced some major setbacks recently, but remain stalwart in preserving their new heroic personas rather than reverting to their aggressive natures.

Starship Troopers’ Mobile Infantry

Would you like to know more? While the Mobile Infantry in the Starship Troopers movie was pretty awesome, it doesn’t quite compare to the Starship Troopers from the novel the movie was based on. In the Starship Troopers universe, the combined forces of the Mobile Infantry and the space-based Navy actually form the foundation of their government under the elected Sky Marshal.

The Protoss

The first species created by an ancient, powerful race called the Xel’naga, the Protoss eventually fought off their creators and went on to found a massive space empire made up of warriors and psychics. Unfortunately, the Xel’naga went on to create a new race called the Zerg. The Protoss, having fallen to infighting, were forced to once again band together to help the Terrans fight this new threat.

What’s your favorite fictional army? How well do you thing it would stand up to the armies on this list? Let me know!

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