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What’s Inside C3i Magazine Nr 35

The Game

Mark Herman’s Burma: The Forgotten War, 1943-1944

The China-Burma-India theater was low on Allied logistic priorities yet how the war progressed here determined the fate of China. Burma was the backdoor to China where Allied logistic support allowed Kuomintang forces to tied down the bulk of the Imperial Japanese army. Burma covers the critical period of the war where the Allies are trying to open a new Burma road punctuated by two successive Japanese offensives designed to shut down China’s last supply line.

Empire of the Sun (GMT Games) spawns yet another RBM Studio scenario game Burma: The Forgotten War, 1943-1944. This new game follows in the tradition of South Pacific: Breaking the Bismarck Barrier, 1942-1943 (RBM Studio) where you focus down on another critical element of the Pacific War narrative. Burma is a stand alone two-player game that uses the entirety of the Empire of the Sun rules.

>>Download the rulebook for Burma here!

Players Required: 1-2

Burma, Want to Play?

Playing Time: 1.5 hours

Similar To: South Pacific, Empire of the Sun

Map Dimensions: 11” x 17”

Bring Your Own: Dice


Game Design: Mark Herman

Art Director: Rodger B. MacGowan

Playtesters: Steffen Barth, Chris Thibault, Francisco Colmenares, Gordon Blizzard, Todd Carter

Playtest Coordinator: Chris Crane

Counter Art: Mark Simonitch & Dave Lawrence

Game Map: Mark Simonitch

Rulebook Layout: Mark Simonitch

Cover Art: Rodger B. MacGowan Copyright 2021

Game Publishers: RBM Studio LLC, Rodger B. MacGowan and Steven D. MacGowan along with Studiolo Designs (both Copyright 2021)

Printed in U.S.A.

The Magazine

A short description of what each article in this issue covers

Propaganda Round, Nr 4: by Volko Ruhnke: Volko delves into the complexities of categorizing wargames based on levels of warfare, emphasizing the subjective nature and overlapping boundaries between strategic, operational, and tactical levels. It also examines Britain’s advantages in World War II and explores the nuances of analyzing and selecting war games, highlighting the importance of considering multiple factors and historical context.

• Moonshine in Atlantic Chase by Jeremy White: The article discusses the concept of the “fog of war” as articulated by Carl von Clausewitz in his book “On War.” It explores how this concept is difficult to incorporate into war games, which often simplify command and control. We look at two models: the absolute knowledge model, exemplified by games like Chess, where players have complete information, and the invisibility model, represented by games like Battleship, where players have limited information. The author aims to explore a middle ground that more accurately captures the uncertainties of warfare in their game design.

• Clio’s Corner Nr12: The Sequence of Play, or How to Organize Chaos by Mark Herman: Mark goes through the significance of the sequence of play in board games. He emphasizes how the sequence of play serves as the foundation of a game, with other mechanics and systems supporting it. By aligning the sequence of play with historical events and desired player interactions, Herman aims to create immersive experiences that allow players to directly experience the narrative and the impact of great military commanders.

• C3i Interview with Vance von Borries by Sam Sheikh: In this interview, Vance von Borries discusses his background and journey into game design. He started as a tax accountant but developed an interest in history and wargames, leading him to design games such as Afrika Korps and Air Assault on Crete. He reflects on his experiences, including getting his first game published, the challenges of designing WWII-themed games, and his thoughts on the future of the hobby, emphasizing the international influence and technological advancements. Von Borries also mentions his upcoming projects, including a game on the Eastern Front and a reprint of Remember the Maine.

• Opening Moves: German and Russian Strategy in Kursk ’43 by Trevor Bender: “With the publication of Kursk: The Tigers are Burning, 1943 (aka Kursk ’43) in C3i Nr34, players have explored its distinct pre-game openings and posture selection procedure, devising distinctive strategies for each side to secure victory. This article provides a concise overview of the key themes, offering an opportunity to add a fresh twist to the widely embraced depiction of the Russian Front during the summer and fall of 1943.”

• Kontact Now: Red Eclipse: The Dawn of a New Age by Steve Overton: Red Eclipse (RE) is a new game in the Kontact Now (KN) series, offering tactical combat from 1936 to 2040+. The game combines mechanics from various tactical systems, including Fire Team, Squad Leader, Advanced Squad Leader, and Combat Commander. It introduces the Command Point system, Leader Activation and Command Radius, Tactical Event Cards for Fog of War, a unique dice system to represent different weaponry, and emphasizes the human aspect of tactical combat with specialist units and close combat mechanics. The series covers three distinct periods: World War II, the Hybrid years, and the Modern era.

• What is Game Development? by Jason Carr: Jason discusses the process of game development and the various aspects involved in ensuring a game meets expectations. It highlights the importance of refining the game’s model and mechanics, conducting playtests, balancing the gameplay, and ensuring the rulebook is clear and complete. The article emphasizes the role of a developer in supporting the designer and bringing a game to its full potential while acknowledging the challenges and responsibilities of game development.

• A Tribute to the Memory of John Hill and Chad Jensen by Sam Sheikh: “These games are story generators, and playing them often results in the creation of war-movie narratives reminiscent of Hollywood.” Sam looks back on the design legacies of John Hill and Chad Jensen, drawing attention close ties that Chad made to John’s Squad Leader with his own masterwork: Combat Commander: Europe.

 Rules of Order by Trevor Bender: Trevor discusses the importance of ethical behavior in gaming and recounts a personal experience of a player facing aggression and bullying from another player. It emphasizes the need to consider others’ enjoyment and maintain healthy relationships within the gaming community, highlighting the significance of ethical norms and fair play.

• Snakes and Ladders Nr2: That’s Not a Wargame! by Harold Buchanan: Harold highlights the importance and challenges of defining what constitutes a wargame. He argues that personal definitions and exclusivity within the wargaming community can lead to a negative reputation. He suggests that instead of focusing on rigid definitions, it is more beneficial to have a broad understanding and welcome diverse perspectives. The article concludes by highlighting a case where a board game, U-BOOT, won multiple awards at the Charles S. Roberts Awards, despite some arguing that it didn’t fit the traditional definition of a wargame, emphasizing the idea that definitions may not matter in the end. Volko Ruhnke also throws in his two cents in a sidebar!

• Non-linear games for a non-linear World by Riccardo Masini: Riccardo dissects the concept of non-linearity in wargames and its implications for historical simulation. The author explores how traditional wargames often simplify complex cause-effect relationships, while newer games embrace non-linear mechanics to represent hidden factors and uncertainties. The article also highlights the inclusion of non-linear elements in modern wargames, such as the use of cards and player interactions, which provide a broader representation of historical events and enhance gameplay.

• The Soviet Collective: The Long Dawn by Darin Leviloff: Worthington Games has released a Deluxe Edition of the Soviet Dawn game, originally published in 2013. The game was inspired by the Russian Civil War and incorporates solitaire gameplay, offering players a unique narrative experience. The Deluxe Edition features improved production quality, including a mounted map, professional printed game markers, and visually appealing cards. The game’s success has also influenced other solitaire games within the hobby, leading to the development of various titles inspired by its mechanics.

• Flying Colors: Serpents of the Seas: Two Lost Battles by Mike Nagel: This issue of C3i Magazine includes two scenarios for Flying Colors and Serpents of the Seas that were initially excluded from the games. The Penobscot Expedition, originally planned for Serpents of the Seas, had to be cut due to space constraints and the inclusion of a ship already present in Flying Colors. Knowles’ Action was intended for the third deluxe printing of Flying Colors but couldn’t fit due to content limitations, so both scenarios are now presented in the magazine.

• C3i Interview: Dan Fournie by Sam Sheik: Dan Fournie is a retired military officer and a notable figure in the wargaming community. He has authored numerous articles and game modules, focusing primarily on ancient history and warfare. Fournie’s interest in history extends beyond the ancient era, including World War II and modern warfare. He served in the U.S. military, with assignments in West Berlin, South Korea, Colombia, and Iraq. Fournie is known for his expertise in ancient battles, particularly his affinity for Hannibal and the Punic Wars.

• Through A Cracked Lens (Or, Looking Back at How RBM’s Fire & Movement Magazine Opened Up a Wide World of Gaming for me) by Andy Nunez: Andy recounts his journey into the wargaming hobby, starting from his rural upbringing with limited exposure to games. Discovering board wargames in college, with Kriegspiel being his first real wargame experience, this led himto explore other games, including Rise and Decline of the Third Reich, which ignited their passion for the hobby. He also expresses his appreciation for Rodger MacGowan’s artwork in Fire & Movement Magazine and reflect on the changes in the wargaming industry over the years.

• Origins of Briefings, Arquebus, Fire & Movement to C3i Magazine by Warren Williams: Warren gives us his personal account of the his friendship with Rodger MacGowan and their shared passion for wargaming. It describes their high school and college years, playing Avalon Hill games, and their collaboration in creating and publishing Fire & Movement Magazine, a review magazine for war games.

• Stopping the Panzers: or How 3rd Canadian Infantry Division saved the Normandy Invasion by Rob Bottos: Rob argues that the game “Normandy ’44” fails to accurately represent the role and importance of the Canadian forces in the Battle of Normandy. He suggests changes to the game rules to reflect the Canadians’ specific tasks and capabilities, including the formation of Brigade Fortresses to counter German armored counterattacks. The author highlights the Canadians’ significant role in stopping the Panzer divisions and praises their training and professionalism.

Inserts Inside Nr 35:

  • Countersheet, C3i Magazine Nr35 – Index of this issue’s die-cut counters (see Page 67)
  • Burma: The Forgotten War – RBM Studio Game – by Mark Herman
    Game Rulebook (36 pages), Game Mapsheet, Playing Cards and die-cut Counters
  • SPQR Battle Module – Battle of Lake Trasimene – by Gian Carlo Ceccoli & Daniel A. Fournie
    Module Set-Up Booklet (12 pages), Game Mapsheet and Leader Counters
  • Roman Disaster at Teutoburg – C3i Solitaire Game – by Pascal Toupy
  • Labyrinth: ISIL – High Watermark – 2015 Scenario – by Trevor Bender