Sunday, July 15, 2012

Tarigo Convoy - Thoughts on GQIII

The Tarigo convoy refight was the first GQ game I'd played (at least on a table with other players) in 20 years.  Since the third edition feature a lot of new material and my memory works like a sieve, I'd thought I put some thoughts down on virtual paper.

  1. The rules work well.  The basic mechanisms are easy to use and teach to newbies.  It produced a fast paced game to a conclusion with a reasonable amount of rule checking and page flipping on my part (this will only get better with more games under my belt).  Reading the rules I had a lot of "yeah that's about I'd handling it if I was writing a set of rules" moments.
  2. The new GQ features are an improvement.  The biggest change was in gunfire, which now features a D12 roll for every pair of barrels rather than the abstract gun: defense factors used in earlier GQ versions.
  3. I definitely like the way the rules are structured with a simple set of common rules that work but abstract details, and the ability to bolt on more complex rules for torpedoes, aircraft etc.  My tendency would be to stick to the basic set for the most part since I favour a KISS approach.  For one thing, I like the admirals to focus on the big picture and let the torpedo and aircraft specialists work out the details on their end (the impact being abstracted into the results).  I'm also skeptical of additional complexity since I find in many places this leads to "spurious accuracy" - i.e. an implied level of precision in the estimates or rules that is much higher than what is actually possible.
  4. I halved the game scale to 1"=200yds, which meant that we kept the action all on one table.  In the end, we probably could have used 1"=100 yes given the 10' table top but for larger actions I'd like to return to the halved scale.
  5. We used the rules plotted movement system, common to many naval rules and personal bug bear of mine.   I personally like initiative based systems (like this used in David Manley's rules) or a sequential system (like the one in GWH Trafalgar or my own WWI naval rules).  However, I had to say that the plotted movement worked well and that GQIII had enough checks in place to prevent the truly unfortunate results that sometimes occur.
  6. I need to make some improvements to the games aids I used.  More on this on another post.
Conclusion - it's a good set of rules that can be played right out off of the shelf with no need for mods or changes.

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