Feet in the fire

It’s received wisdom in the sales game that if you want to accomplish something tangible, you need to engage in a bit of goal-setting. Stuff like “I want to make enough on commissions this month to buy that new match grade M1911A” or (in this economy, anyway) “I want to sell enough this month to keep my friggin’ job.”

Frankly, people who engage in setting up high-value targets as their economic goals usually scare the heck out of me. I understand that achieving lofty financial goals can bring a certain sense of security and other types of satisfaction, but I guess my priorities have always been sort of screwed up. Among the three Big F’s of goal-setting – Family, Faith, Finances – “finances” ranks third. That hasn’t always been the case, mind you but, fortunately, we all get to learn a few things along the road to middle age.

The other day, after reading one or another of those inanely harmless ‘sales motivation’ e-newsletters with which I get regularly spammed, it popped into my head that it might be of some benefit to engage in a bit of wargame goal-setting. And what better time to set some gaming goals than the first of a new year?

In my last post, I mildly lamented the mismatch between the number of games I buy each year and the number of games I seriously play and blog about. I have no illusions that I’ll reverse that ratio this year. But what I’d like to do is hold my own feet to the fire a little by setting out a list of games that I want to give some blog-love at some point in the coming 12 months.

These are games that I already own, but they fall into that group that I either haven’t played much – or haven’t played at all. They look good. I want to get into them. I imagine they’ll be quite entertaining. But for some reason I’ve barely touched any of them. Now I’m hoping that if I set them up as goals – right here in bloggy print – maybe I’ll be too embarrassed not to play them before the end of the year.

Considering that I only blogged about 7 or so games last year, it’s an ambitious list. But here they are, each with a little commentary.

The Caucasus Campaign (GMT) – I started on this one last month, but the holidays rudely interrupted all activity (except gift wrapping/box stacking) on the Big Table. It will get the attention it deserves before I move along to anything else.

Panzerblitz: Hill of Death (MMP) – Purchased as a pre-order from the publisher, this one has been on the ‘play real soon’ shelf since its arrival. I don’t know why it keeps getting pushed back by other arrivals. It looks really good. I even have the Carentan module from the Operations special issue. I guess I just haven’t been in a ‘platoon’ mood for a while.

Baltic Gap (MMP) – I generally enjoy OCS games very much. I followed all of John Kisner’s design/development commentary on CSW. I bought it right after it was released. I had an intense 10 days or so of interest in it and farted around with it some. Then it went back in the box and onto the same shelf as Panzerblitz. And there it sits. I dunno why.

Asia Engulfed (GMT) – Europe Engulfed is one of my favorite ‘strategic’ games. I was so anxious to see Asia Engulfed that I pre-ordered it. Why it is in the Game Closet without the first sticker going on the first block defies all logic.

SCS: Bastogne (MMP) – Don’t get me started. I feel really stupid that I haven’t done anything with this game since it arrived here in the swamp. I think the SCS system works very well at the scale presented in Bastogne. It reminds me a lot of one of my favorite SCS games, Fallschirmjaeger. Which, of course, I sold off a couple of years ago in a moment of inexplicable insanity. Maybe that’s why I haven’t played it – it reminds me that I’m half-wit.  Sometimes I’m such a moron.

John Prados’ Third Reich (APL) – This game isn’t even close to new, but I’m including it here for several reasons. While I have poked at it once or twice, I’ve never given it a total workout. And I haven’t revisited this game since I bought the ‘deluxe’ map for it. Neither have I picked it up again since the rulebook update. It’s been a long time, but I remember that I sort of liked the buy-n-pull-chits activation mechanism – so I want to give it another shot this year.

Of course, there will be ‘new’ game arrivals in the months ahead as well. Could I somehow, possibly, manage to double the number of games I blog about in the course of a year?

Probably not, but it will be fun to try.

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