(Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

From the first clash at Manassas to the epic confrontation between Lee and Grant, the Brother Against Brother series will bring new levels of historical detail and realism to the battles of the Civil War. This regimental-level game, created by the developers of the award-winning Forge of Freedom, builds on that game’s acclaimed tactical engine, adding scrupulously researched orders of battle, high-quality map graphics, command and control rules reflecting the numerous challenges faced by army commanders, and plenty other features. Beginning with The Drawing of The Sword – which recreates the pivotal opening battles at Manassas , Wilson ’s Creek, Mill Springs and Williamsburg – Brother Against Brother lets you refight the Civil War from start to finish.

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Gil R.
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(Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

As has recently been discussed in the General Discussion area, Western Civilization Software is getting close to releasing the first in a series of games devoted to historical Civil War battles. The "Brother Against Brother" series will be at the regimental level, with highly detailed maps and orders of battle. The engine itself is a greatly modified version of the "Forge of Freedom" engine, with numerous changes.

No screenshots just yet, but most of the design work is behind us, so we're happy to discuss what the game will be like.

The first game in the series, "The Drawing of the Sword," will include the battles of 1st Bull Run, Williamsburg, Wilson's Creek and Mill Springs.

As for a release date, none is set, but we expect it to be this summer.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

By the way, the title for BAB1 comes from a famous quote by Ulysses S. Grant, which is usually given as just "There never was a time when, in my opinion, some way could not be found to prevent the drawing of the sword." The full quote, according to WikiQuotes (http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Ulysses_S._Grant), is: "Though I have been trained as a soldier, and participated in many battles, there never was a time when, in my opinion, some way could not be found to prevent the drawing of the sword. I look forward to an epoch when a court, recognized by all nations, will settle international differences, instead of keeping large standing armies as they do in Europe." This suggests that he was not referring to the Civil War in particular, but 1) it's Ulysses S. Grant and 2) it is certainly a fitting title for a release devoted to the four most important opening battles of the Civil War.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by e_barkmann »

this sounds great! 

Quick question, will your screen display size still be locked to 1024 x 768?

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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

We are hoping to include it. EricBabe, lead developer and programmer, has been examining the code with that in mind, since we definitely see the value in having multiple resolutions permitted. Please understand that it is very difficult to retrofit this sort of thing into an existing engine, and that when the COG/FOF engine was first designed fixed screen resolutions were still the norm. But this is definitely something we hope to do. I'll let you know definitively as soon as I know definitively whether we'll be able to pull it off or not.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Bison36 »

Looking forward to seeing screen shots and AARs. The ability to play WCS tactical battles without the fuss of strategic planning will be a nice addition to the catalog :D. Although, it would be nice if the battles were linked and attrition/moral carried over the next battle. I realize that you already stated this is not planned, but a guy can dream.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

That's something we might do in the future, but not in BAB. Something like the Peninsular Campaign would lend itself very nicely to this, due to the relatively small area the campaign covered. But the BAB series is meant to be just battles, and to implement that would be a pretty serious case of mission creep.

It really depends on sales, to be honest. FOF did well enough that we were confident there would be a market for the BAB series. If that market is strong, we'd obviously try to find other Civil War games we could produce, and a campaign-themed game would be the logical next step.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Bison36 »

Well you've already got one release day sale here! I was playing through my FOF campaign last week and actually was thinking how nice it would be to just jump into a tactical battle right from load up of the game. Looking forward to your up coming previews into the game.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

Thanks! We had a hunch that some long-time FOF players would welcome this news...
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by vanmi »

great news. I'm eager to see the result !!
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by wodin »

Widescreen support will be very important to me. If the game appears stretched and degrades like the SSG titles I wont buy.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Obsolete »

The title had me thinking this was some sort of mideival game.  I suspect many others may think that too at first take.

Anyhow, looking forward to seeing more.  But it will take a LOT of work to get me to break my nostalgic love of CWG.

Just maybe, you can get me to put down Shattered Union though :P



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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

The title had me thinking this was some sort of mideival game. I suspect many others may think that too at first take.

I can see the risk, but we figured that "Brother against Brother" is so clearly Civil War that it would negate that. (The title also potentially alludes to the line in the Battle Hymn of the Republic, "He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword," by the way.)

On the plus side, maybe some people who are into medieval games will stumble in here and become interested in the gunpowder period.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Max 86 »

Sounds very interesting. You guys seem to have a good thing going. I would definitely like to see a valley campaign game as one long battle with this. See if I have Stonewall sized balls!

For what its worth, I'd love to see the FoF engine used just for an eastern theatre game, specifically the Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virgina area. Larger map with more regions to maneuver through. Maybe another covering the western theatre too? That would be sweet.[:D]

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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

Those sound good to me too. But there are so many games -- Civil War and otherwise -- that we would like to develop that there is no telling whether we will do these, and if so when.

One thing that makes them more likely is that our extensive OOB research for BAB could be reused (as well as some other research we've done), so it would be much easier than starting from scratch. Even so, the earliest we might even begin to work on this would be two years from now. We have a lot on our plate, not even including future BAB releases.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Anthropoid »

Congratulations guys! [:D]
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by JudgeDredd »

Gil

r u in BETA yet?
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

Yes, we turned the corner recently. There is still some important coding to be done, but the most important work on that is behind us. Within the next two weeks or so I should be done with all of the map research, and that will enable us to expand the number of battles and scenarios we're able to test.

But the main thing is that we have a very stable -- no crashes in ages! -- game with a functioning AI. And the build that Eric is currently working on makes all sorts of improvements. So once maps and OOB's are done (by the end of May for both, I hope) it will just be a matter of testing until we're satisfied.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by kafka »

well, sorry to say this, but I'm sort of disappointed. I hoped the next game would continue the combination of the grand strategy and the tactical battles layer CWS has so masterly provided so far. I really hope you do not completely abandon this approach.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by Gil R. »

Don't worry, we have at least one more of those planned, most likely for sometime next year. (There's no way of knowing if it will cover a period that's of interest to you, of course.) But we're also branching out, with this and two more games based on completely new engines likely to appear this year.
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RE: (Informally) Announcing a New Civil War Game from WCS

Post by JudgeDredd »

Well - there is really a way of knowing Gil - you could tell us, then we'd know [;)]

Well - I'm stoked and can't wait to see what you lot have done with this one - FoF is one of my all time favourites. Yes, one of the reasons I liked it was because of the combination of strategy and tactical - but I'm more than willing to try out any new approaches you have.
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