Behind the Lines
June 2006

In This Issue

 

A Letter from the Editor

Summer is here!  In case people missed the event, my new wife and I moved out to the west coast (Oregon) back in October.  At the time it was mild weather and getting colder every day.  I grew up in Pennsylvania, but I haven't lived there in nearly 15 years.  I forgot two important things about living in the north.  First, I forgot just how extreme day to day temperatures are.  Two weeks ago the mostly inaccurate bank-thermometer said it was 105 (40.5 C)!  I know that thing's broken, but it was sure hot... Two days ago it was 45 (7.2 C).  Second I forgot how LONG the days are during summer.  It seriously doesn't get dark here till 8:30.  After living in Florida for the last decade (and for my wife, her entire life) it is quite a shocking change.  It's not helping our sleep schedule either.

So what does this have to do with gaming?  Well, other than making it possible to play games from 6:00 AM to 8:30 PM without turning on a light, it doesn't.  I've simply run out of things to say for this month's letter, ok?  I'll come up with something better next month!  Meanwhile, we've got our convention schedule and a new Panzer Command video and ... well, you'll see.  Let the reading begin!

Sincerely,
Joe Lieberman, Editor
 

Feature: Get On the (Convention) Bus!

Each year Matrix Games attends a number of conventions across the US.  Below if our quick schedule and then a little bit about what you'll see.  If you've always wanted to meet the Matrix crew, it is looking like Origins is the place to go, but rest assured all the events will have plenty to do and see.

Origins Game Convention:  June 29th - July 2nd.
www.originsgames.com

The World Boardgaming Championship:  August 1st - 6th
www.boardgamers.org

GenCon Indy:  August 10th - 13th
www.gencon.com


We've got some huge sneak previews for Origins as well as a brand new release!  The sneak previews include something new from SSG, 2By3 Games, Destroyer Studios, and the Crown of Glory fellows, Western-Civilization Software.  While it is not confirmed exactly what we'll have at each show yet, we expect all three shows will have something new to display.  It is currently planned that Origins will showcase some of our biggest new titles though, including the June releases (The Operational Art of War III, Conquest of the Aegean and Harpoon 3 Advanced Naval Warfare) as well as the new game scheduled for release at Origins, Panzer Command: Operation Winter Storm.

Mark Walker, creator of Lock N' Load: Band of Heroes will be on hand at Origins, personally running tutorial games to teach new players the ins and outs of his fantastic board game.

Other guests at Origins will include Joel Billings of 2By3 Games, Eric Babe of Western-Civilization, Don Gilman of Advanced Gaming Systems, and of course, yours truly (not that anyone wants to see me... but hey, I am the editor) and the rest of the Matrix Staff.

The WBC and GenCon schedule of guests and events isn't set yet, but expect to hear more about it as we get closer to August.

Find out more about Origins at www.originsgames.com

 

Article: I'm a Klingon, who are you?

Yes, my geek-o-meter is up again.  No, this has nothing to do with the Matrix Games tour of the Star Trek show in Las Vegas this year (I'd post the pictures, but I am too embarrassed).  This has to do what what kind of a gamer you are. 

I've decided there are four kinds of gamers in the world:  Socialists, Strategists, Lawyers, and Klingons.

Socialists- The 'casual' gamer who comes over for a social experience.  While these people vary in skill, winning never seems to be their primary objective.  Sometimes socialists and strategists get angry at each other because one is playing to win and the other isn't.  The socialist will never understand why people would get angry about not invading the Saxon land, even if it meant someone else would win for certain.

Strategists- These are the people who really focus on victory, planning in advance what they and their opposition is likely to do.  They tend to win for their effort, but can often be at odds with other players because they also tend to take a lot longer with each move.

Lawyers- People who live for the rules of the game.  What that means can vary, some people just like to learn new games and play new things to make comparisons.  Others get involved with massively complex games and learn the 250 page rulebook cover to cover.  Some lawyers use their rule knowledge to spring some surprises during the game, using their actual understanding of the game mechanic to ruin the plans of their opponents.

Klingons- Then there are the players who play to kill.  That is, they play to create a body count (even if there is no violence in the game at all).  They don't really care about winning the war so much as winning the battles.  This group may not win often but so long as they were able to use their relentless attacking strategy to slay hordes of whatevers, they will always walk away happy.  This, of course, can really piss off whoever is on the receiving end of the horde.

So who are you?  Klingon?  Lawyer?  Indian Chief?  No wait, I didn't cover that one... but we'll save it for another day.  Despite the fact all the different gamer personalities get angry at each other for their various play styles, having a single group (for instance, all Klingons) would be even worse.  Gaming groups are like marriage, you just don't want to be THAT similar to your spouse, otherwise you're likely to end up in court.  Think I missed a play style?  E-mail me at JoeL@Matrixgames.com and let me know!

 

Whispers...

What on Earth are all these people talking about?

See the two new trailers for Panzer Command: Operation Winter Storm: 
May:
ftp://ftp.matrixgames.com/pub/PanzerCommandOperationWinterStorm/PanzerCommandMayMovie.wmv 
June: ftp://ftp.matrixgames.com/pub/PanzerCommandOperationWinterStorm/PanzerCommandJuneMovie.wmv

Rumor:  A little birdie told me that we'll be seeing the first civil war game from Matrix Games real soon... REAL soon.  In fact, I have been told to go play the beta, for it is likely visitors at Origins will get a chance to play it hands-on.

Rumor: The birdie's cousin told me Starshatter 2: The Gathering Storm (which we showed a video for last year) is also nearing completion.

Fact:  Mark H. Walker owes me a beer.  This doesn't affect you, but now you're all witnesses so he better pay up at the convention!

Updates

This section provides links to the updates released between the last newsletter and now.  No more having to search for download links; we've got 'em right here!

Gary Grigsby's World at War v. 1.201

http://www.matrixgames.com/games/downloads.asp?gid=295

PureSim Baseball 2007 v1.10

http://www.matrixgames.com/games/game.asp?gid=329

Flashpoint Germany v. 1.11

http://www.matrixgames.com/games/downloads.asp?gid=287

Maximum-Football V. 1.0.139

http://www.matrixgames.com/games/downloads.asp?gid=301


Coming Soon

Crown of Glory v1.20, War Plan Orange v1.202, War in the Pacific 1.802
 

Keep an eye on the news page and forums at www.matrixgames.com for information on these two upcoming patches!

 

 

A Parting Shot

A favorite quote, which for some reason I never understood as a child, is "Hindsight is 20/20."  Eloquent and short, just the way I like my quotes.  June 28th 1919 would mark a case study of 20/20 hindsight like no other.  The Treaty of Versailles would be signed under protest by Germany and the result of which would put Germany into a dangerous depression, allowing the rise of the people who'd lead us into World War 2.  Ok, that is history we all know.  It happened in June, 5 days and 87 years ago and it is a forgotten piece of history by many citizens of the world- but it really shouldn't be.

On to funnier parting-shot news.  Jack Thomson, the moronic anti-game lawyer said something... well, moronic.  While normally a comment like this made by a normal person would be just "Well, he was just exaggerating" - keep in mind, this is a lawyer making an official statement about a police action.  Lawyers aren't supposed to use absolutes, words like "never," because they are almost never true.

So here's the funny quote of the month!  "Nobody shoots anybody in the face unless you're a hit man or a video gamer."  A quick Google search on "shot in the face" turns up over 34,000 entries (and 93,700,000 websites that contain the words 'shot' and 'face') ... apparently there are either a lot of hit men or a lot of gamers out there carrying weapons.

Joe Lieberman
Newsletter Editor