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October 21, 2008 1:34 AM   Subscribe

Warfare: 1917 gives you a taste of the trenches.
posted by chuckdarwin (47 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite

 
This has been keeping me on the edge of getting fired busy at work for a couple weeks now.
posted by Roman Graves at 2:07 AM on October 21, 2008


Where did the last half hour go?
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:08 AM on October 21, 2008 [2 favorites]


Wow, surprisingly deep and tactical. Doesn't quite capture the months on end to advance tens of metres, but that wouldn't make a good game. Reminds me a bit of Shadez, but better executed.
posted by Happy Dave at 3:17 AM on October 21, 2008


Odd. When I have Riflemen made it resets my tank-making progress. If the point is to show how futile trench-war is, then the point was understood.
posted by Laotic at 3:18 AM on October 21, 2008


Damn Krauts.
posted by champthom at 3:26 AM on October 21, 2008


If the point is to show how futile trench-war is, then the point was understood.

I think that's definitely the point. Especially when you send a wave of guys into no-man's land and they all get blown to shit in seconds.

p.s. The German campaign is more difficult.
posted by chuckdarwin at 3:39 AM on October 21, 2008


Th' Great War fin'lly makes sen'! F'r ye'rs, I alw'ys won'erd why th' Kaiser's forces 'sisted 'n bellowin', "Let's go, lads!" whil' chargin' th' trenches. Turns out they was punters li' our All'ed boys.
posted by Smart Dalek at 3:40 AM on October 21, 2008


I have to say that "Taste of the Trenches" has been the least popular event of our wine and cheese club.
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:00 AM on October 21, 2008 [8 favorites]


I am routinely impressed with the quality of the output at Armor Games. They make simple, short, effective games, and they're available for free. I'm currently working my way through Shift 3.
posted by mystyk at 4:10 AM on October 21, 2008


I just yesterday watched the last episode of Blackadder goes Forth...there's a taste of the trenches for ya.
posted by notsnot at 4:13 AM on October 21, 2008


How do you stop the silly buggers from leaving their trenches? Sigh. STAY IN THE TRENCH. Did you miss the Boer war? Oh, wait...
posted by alasdair at 4:54 AM on October 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


I just yesterday watched the last episode of Blackadder goes Forth...there's a taste of the trenches for ya.

There was a best of on the other day, and it was great. Flashheart is the man.
posted by chuckdarwin at 4:55 AM on October 21, 2008


How do you stop the silly buggers from leaving their trenches? Sigh. STAY IN THE TRENCH. Did you miss the Boer war? Oh, wait...

Each trench only takes 3 units, so if an advancing unit reaches the front-line trench and it's full, they keep advancing. You need to stack up units in reserve trenches behind the front line, then push them all forward in one go, preferably with tanks and artillery support, and just after you've gassed the enemy trenches. What a delightfully grim little game. I've advanced troops accidentally into my own gas clouds a few times. Little choking noises. Reminds me of the crying woman in the background noise of Defcon, only with more mud and artillery.
posted by Happy Dave at 5:05 AM on October 21, 2008


I normally don't enjoy these types of games where you just send out troops, but a trench warfare scenario really makes it work. It makes sense to send people in waves, and to pause sometimes and bunker down in a machine gun nest ambush before pushing forward again and hoping you can make the next trench with enough troops to hold it. Certainly highlights the futility of war too. There were a few times I'd send out an officer to cheer up the grunts, only to have him take an artillery shell to the chest as soon as he'd hopped into the trench.

Oh, and Laotic, the timers resetting is a feature and not a bug. The idea is you need to prioritize units and send out the quick ones first before saving up for the big guns.
posted by CheshireCat at 5:13 AM on October 21, 2008


Baldrick, I believe the phrase rhymes with "Clucking Bell"...
posted by DreamerFi at 5:17 AM on October 21, 2008 [2 favorites]


Obligatory link to Bonds' "The Unquiet Western Front" for thread balance.
posted by Jofus at 5:34 AM on October 21, 2008


This game was made by Con-Artists Productions, known for The Last Stand and its obviously-named sequel, The Last Stand 2 (previously).
posted by joedan at 6:05 AM on October 21, 2008


this is insanely difficult to master for a buffoon like me.
posted by krautland at 6:47 AM on October 21, 2008


I just beat this yesterday, and started playing the custom battles...it is quite addictive.
posted by schyler523 at 7:06 AM on October 21, 2008


Field Marshal Haig is about to make yet another gargantuan effort to move his drinks cabinet six inches close to Berlin.

It's amazing how quick you fall into the mindset of a WWI general... what the latest offensive has failed! Send in more troops!
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:15 AM on October 21, 2008 [3 favorites]


nth the recommendation, this is so addicting and well-done.
posted by The Whelk at 7:16 AM on October 21, 2008


This might not help with the game, but it's interesting reading (1917 U.S. Army manual).
Military Instructors Manual, by James P. Cole and Oliver Schoonmaker
posted by acro at 7:23 AM on October 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


(interesting == horrific)
posted by acro at 7:26 AM on October 21, 2008


Great, now I'm going to turn into Pinhead.
posted by Smedleyman at 7:51 AM on October 21, 2008 [3 favorites]


Thanks for posting this. Great find. Curse this war!
posted by RussHy at 7:51 AM on October 21, 2008


Yeah, the ability to create custom battles is basically a recipe for endless, grinding war.

And severely reduced productivity.
posted by Happy Dave at 8:14 AM on October 21, 2008


Thanks for posting this.

You're very welcome. This is web-based gaming at its best.
posted by chuckdarwin at 8:59 AM on October 21, 2008


The fourth German mission, Gaining Ground, is kicking my ass. The HINT says something about tanks, but I don't have tanks yet.
posted by Eideteker at 9:23 AM on October 21, 2008


Wow, finally did it. The title is a trick; you pretty much have to wear down their morale (though I did almost beat it by taking ground).
posted by Eideteker at 9:34 AM on October 21, 2008


A few weeks ago I beat the game largely by rushing my troops over to their side, which forces an automatic win. As soon as your artillery is decent (it'll take a few games) bomb their trenches and rush your people through, locking the new trenches before they get there so they bypass it and continue on. Don't forget to save a few artillery rounds for the tanks that'll surprise your troops.
posted by jwells at 9:50 AM on October 21, 2008


I beat the game

I've never understood this idiom. In basketball, do you say that you beat the referees? Did Columbus claim to have conquered the ocean?
posted by yath at 10:16 AM on October 21, 2008




A fun little game. I found the english side a lot harder than the german side. The last english mission in particular was tricky, with no trenches of your own you're pretty much just stuck spamming assault troops and hoping your artillery timing happens right and that you don't miss their tanks too much. Your own tanks and officers were pretty much useless, they just died and your morale dropped way down. The first german missions were defensive and gave a lot of xp too so you can buy the upgrades.

posted by Authorized User at 10:22 AM on October 21, 2008


a taste of the trenches.

A bracing, flinty, mineral terroir.
posted by StickyCarpet at 10:49 AM on October 21, 2008


I did the German missions first, but even taking that into account, I found the British missions to be amazingly easy. The last British mission is cake if you launch your tank first (remember, everything is fully charged at the outset; deploying your first unit restarts the counter for everything). Saving up for the 40% redeployment saving on the artillery side helps, too.
posted by Eideteker at 11:05 AM on October 21, 2008


I found that the tank simply got pwned right before the enemy lines, bringing my morale so down I simply couldn't recover. But I had ran through the english missions pretty fast so I had only the most basic upgrades.. You get more experience if you kill a lot of soldiers so blitzkrieg is not useful. I also did the German missions first. Of course.
posted by Authorized User at 11:25 AM on October 21, 2008


Defintely a lot of fun. I think my military style would probably be close to Stalin's - just keep throwing wave after wave of bodies at the enemy until he's worn down. At one point I was shouting at the monitor, "If the man in front of you dies, pick up his rifle and keep moving!".
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 11:32 AM on October 21, 2008 [2 favorites]


Mine was more like "get a bunch of assault squads to take their trench and then discover that in the meantime, all your reinforcements have been gassed."
posted by daniel_charms at 1:17 PM on October 21, 2008


The last British mission was annoying as hell. It took me about 10 attempts to beat. I would keep almost overrunning them and then losing when the infantry collectively shit their pants five meters from the line.
posted by daniel_charms at 1:20 PM on October 21, 2008


Being Germany seemed to influence my playing. I just got nastier. Drawing the British out of their trenches with my infantry, and then that's when the 3 machine gun units would advance from the rear trench and mow them down. Or watching their reinforcements advance to their trench, and almost get there, but be blown to bits with mortar fire before they could even start firing. Taste my iron, porridge-eating swine!
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:55 PM on October 21, 2008


I was only able to beat the last two levels by ignoring infantry completely and just sending tank after tank (with airstrikes sprinkled liberally to taste) until the Jerries were completely demoralized.
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:56 PM on October 21, 2008


Did Columbus claim to have conquered the ocean?

Acutally, he probably did, but in Italian - or Spanish... depends on who he was talking to. So the literal translation is probably a little tricky to pin down and prove. That, and they didn't have the internet to memorialize every phrase back then.

Also am I the only one who found the German campaign much easier? Ironically undefeated through the whole campaign.
posted by Kimothy at 3:35 PM on October 21, 2008


By the time I got to the last level it was Christmas Eve, and both sides climbed out of our trenches, and we met in the middle of No Man's Land and drank hot cider and smoked cigarettes, and shared pictures of our wives and girlfriends, and played football and sang "Silent Night".

Then on Boxing Day I sent in wave after wave of tanks.
posted by steef at 8:25 PM on October 21, 2008 [3 favorites]


I found the German campaign easier as well. Defending trenches is much easier than taking them.
posted by oneironaut at 8:37 PM on October 21, 2008


If you upgrade your artillery enough, you don't need any infantry.
In fact, infantry are a liability. They get demoralized.
Just drop bombs on the Enemy until they give up.

Strangely enough, this is where modern military strategy has gone.
posted by Richard Daly at 9:41 PM on October 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't know which I like more: the game itself, or this thread. It's like trench poetry!
posted by chuckdarwin at 1:36 AM on October 22, 2008


Yeah, the last British mission was a bit of swine... eventually managed it with the use of a single tank backed with waves of assault squads and gas and artillery assaults at the right time. I think there's a certain amount of luck involved; if you loose a tank early on from a lucky shell, then the morale hit is almost impossible to come back from.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:00 AM on October 22, 2008


I managed to complete the German campaign. The hardest mission was the one where you first got to use tanks - the Brits kept sending in wave after wave of assault squads and tanks (the AI had an advantage there), while the best I could do was two tanks. But this - backed up by a few squads of grenade throwers and infantry plus some heavy shelling - turned out to be enough. The last German mission was a piece of cake compared to this (and the last British one).

Then I replayed the British campaign and beat the German forces back once more. It made me feel empty inside.
posted by daniel_charms at 6:53 AM on October 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


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