Behind the Lines
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!
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
Origins Game Convention: June 29th - July 2nd.
The World Boardgaming Championship: August 1st - 6th
GenCon Indy: August 10th - 13th
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
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
Article: I'm a Klingon, who are
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
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
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!
What on Earth are all these people talking about?
See the two new trailers for Panzer Command: Operation Winter Storm:
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
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
PureSim Baseball 2007 v1.10
Flashpoint Germany v. 1.11
Maximum-Football V. 1.0.139
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
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.