Tag Archives: Power Grid

Playing Nazis? Ethics, Historical Accuracy, and Personal Comfort in Games with Loaded Topics

Earlier this year, I’ve written a post about my most anticipated games to be released this year. Among them was Weimar: The Fight for Democracy (Matthias Cramer, Compass Games), which deals with the interwar Weimar Republic that was toppled by the Nazis. My fellow blogger Dave (check out his blog!) had asked me a year ago how I felt about the Nazis being a playable side in such a game – as this one does not feature them as such, but The Weimar Republic: Political Struggle in Germany, 1919—1933 (Gunnar Holmbäck, GMT Games) does. I’ve been coming back to that question, as it touches on some important matters: Most importantly, one of ethics, which will form the main part of this post. However, there are also questions of historical accuracy, and of personal comfort, with which we will deal in turn. While this post is focused on the two Weimar games, it’ll also take the wider matter into account.

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Farewell 2019 – Non-Historical Games

This is part 3 of my end-of-year posts. I select three nominees in each category and crown a winner. Here are the first two posts on new-to-me games and historical non-fiction books.
Today’s category are non-historical games. I know – games which are not about history? – A wild notion! But I admit, I sometimes dabble in them. No, in fact, more than half to two thirds of my plays are of games which are not about history. They’re often easier to pitch to other people (who might or might not share my interest in the Austrian Succession of 1740), and they often play a bit faster (I assume my Unconditional Surrender! campaign will keep me busy until late 2020). And: They are often (almost!) as much fun!
So, here are the three non-historical games with which I had the most fun this year:

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Farewell 2018 – New-to-me Board Games

How fast the year has (almost) passed! As always, actually. And, also as always, it’s been eventful. The major change in my life is that I’ve finished my M.A. thesis (on the Cold War in board games). That means that I am no longer at least part-time professionally involved with history (I work in a non-related field), but my passion has not faded. In fact, one of the first things I did after my enrollment at university was terminated (and with it my access to the university’s libraries) was to create an account at another scientific library for myself. The books on history keep rolling my way.
So, there has been reading, but, of course, also a lot of gaming and blogging (historical or not). I’d like to share some of my favorites from this year with you. You’ll notice that hardly any book or game of those (or none at all?) was published in 2018. I have played games and read books from 2018, but they haven’t made it to these lists. New is not always better.
I give three nominations per category and crown one the winner – one category per day. So, let’s start with our first category. Continue reading