Sunday, June 29, 2008

Is Hellas a wargame?

A popular past time on BoardGame Geek is questioning the "wargame" credentials of games like Memoir '44, but I think there are some more questionable one out there, like Hellas.

Hellas sure looks like it might be a wargame, but it isn't marketed as one and doesn't seem generally perceived as one.

Things which make it seem like a light wargame:


Two opposing sides

Little soldiers

"Attack" moves

There's an incentive to fight because conquering a city also reduces the opponent's score by one city, for a net swing of 2.

Things which make it NOT seem like a wargame:

It's not listed as a wargame

You don't have to attack the other player. It's possible to win through voyages. As a matter of fact, winning is based on achieving an absolute result (10 cities) so there is no requirement for taking any away from the other player. A 10-9 win is as much a win as a 10-5 win.

There's an incentive NOT to fight because wars are more resource intensive.

I'm generally in favor of an exapnsive and inclusive definiton of wargame, so I'm inclined to consider it one, but I do think it's a marginal case.

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