VIET NAM SIMULATOR TEAM

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There’s no pithy way to lớn sum up the Vietphái nam War without cheapening events or glossing over crucial details of one of the most complicated conflicts of the modern era. What began as a regional shift in power dynamics after the departure of the occupying Japanese troops metastasized into lớn a long và bloody hot war between the planet’s superpowers, & a cultural & political referendum in the United States.

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While researching this danh sách of the best Vietnam giới War games, I was surprised lớn learn that the vast majority of games set during the war have been first-person shooters. When it comes to game kiến thiết, the asymmetry in forces may be the biggest hurdle developers face. The U.S.-backed South Vietnamese side had vastly superior equipment và weapons, but found themselves utterly stymied by the NVA và Viet Cong, who refused to lớn quit fighting even after countless devastating firebombing and deforestation campaigns.

Nevertheless, this bitter và horrendous tropical war of attrition – along with its seismic politicalrepercussions stateside – hold a permanent, unique place in the Western cultural imaginationvà, as such, there’s been an expanding crop of good wargames over the years.We’ve collected the best of the bunch for you here.


There have sầu been no significant releases since May 20trăng tròn. But in case you wanted a refresher…

The Best Vietphái mạnh War Games

Radio CommanderJTS Squad Battles SeriesCommand: Modern OperationsThe Operational Art of War IVVietnam giới ’65Arma 3: The Unsung War Vietnam ModRising Storm 2: Vietnam

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RADIO COMMANDER

Publisher:Games OperatorsPurchase:Steam

It’s gratifying that the first new Vietphái mạnh War-themed game in quite a while is actually pretty good, và with a unique take to lớn boot. It’s more of a lite RTS in terms of mechanics, but the hook is that you’re a Commander baông chồng at the HQ tents, with nothing but a maps and a radio. You need lớn listen to the information you get over comms, & then add that information lớn the map yourself (more or less – there are options lớn scale the realism) và make decisions from there.

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It’s got a narrative element to it – some people think it’s a bit corny or gets in the way, but without it the experience could run the risk of being a bit dry. It’s also the only thing that ties this game khổng lồ the Vietnam War itself, as otherwise you’re just a dude in a tent with a radio pushing pieces about a bản đồ. Still, it’s a very interesting & very challenging game, & wonderfully thematic as well. Radio Commanderrecently received a piece of DLC calledSquad Managementwhich adds more features around the management of your units, from unit exp, to perks, rotation as well as giving everyone a bit more personality.

SQUAD BATTLES: DIEN BIEN PHU, SQUAD BATTLES: TOUR OF DUTY và SQUAD BATTLES: VIETNAM

Publisher:John Tiller SoftwarePurchase:Direct

John Tiller Software provides broad-ranging coverage of the Vietphái mạnh War as well as possibly the most grognard-friendly games in this danh sách. The Squad Battles series zooms in from the vast operational fronts featured in World War II games to lớn focus the action on individual battalions, companies, and platoons – even modelling mortar and tank crews individually, along with each of their available weapons. The John Tiller games make very few concessions to lớn modernity & can feel very dated to lớn today’s players. But there’s something admirable about the stolid “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach the company has taken khổng lồ the game engine and interface, while focusing completely on scenario, maps, & unit development.


The creaky visuals may not turn heads, but these games are some of the very best of their kind


Start with Squad Battles: Dien Bien Phu for the earliest fighting in Vietnam, as the Viet Minch fought their French colonial occupiers out of the country. Squad Battles: Tour of Duty has you assume command of a American unit leader deployed khổng lồ Vietphái nam và fight through the battles that shape your year in-country. Squad Battles: Vietphái nam covers the war more broadly, with campaigns that retrace Hamburger Hill và the Tet Offensive included.

Each of these John Tiller titles includes dozens of scenarios (Vietphái nam has 71) và multiple campaigns, và the maps range in scale from 780 40-meter hexes all the way up to lớn 71,400. You have several multiplayer options, from two-player hot seat khổng lồ play-by-email, as well as LAN & online support. The creaky visuals and clunky old interfaces may not turn heads these days, but these games are undoubtedly aý muốn the best approximations of the classic cardboard-counters-and-firing-charts tabletop wargaming you’ll find in digital form.

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COMMAND: MODERN OPERATIONS

Publisher:Slitherine, Ltd.Purchase:Steam,Direct

WarfareSims’ Command: Operations is sold on Steam, but it’s as much a powerful simulation và training software suite as it is a wargame. Part of what makes it st& out so much is the feedbaông xã you get as a player. The inputs you have available are similar to those a theatre commander would have sầu in a TOC or on a flagship bridge – a comtháng operational picture that displays all available intelligence as quickly as it’s updated by units & sensors in the field. This is a game about commanding naval and air assets across entire theatres of war, and as such it’s dense with information.That means CMO’s Vietnam giới scenargame ios are both highly detailed and a bit professionally detached from the gritty jungle scenes we’re used khổng lồ seeing when the war is portrayed in movies & games.

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But major components of the Vietphái mạnh War were naval actions và air campaigns. With the base game, you get scenarquả táo for the Operation Rolling Thunder bombing chiến dịch, the Navy’s Operation Market Time (the attempt lớn blockade Vietnam giới by sea), và the Vietphái mạnh People’s Air Force raid on the U.S. Navy in the Battle of Đồng Hới. There are plenty more lớn find in CMO’s database of user-created scenarquả táo, including the fateful “Gulf of Tonkin” incident, which – regardless of what really happened – provided the political pretext for the U.S. committing fully to lớn the Vietnam War. We’ve got a reviewif you want to lớn know more about what the platform’s like.

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THE OPERATIONAL ART OF WAR IV

Publisher:Slitherine, Ltd.Purchase:Direct

Tabletop wargaming groans under the weight of modern battlefield considerations lượt thích the fog of war – analog grogs in the past have sầu resorted lớn enlisting referees lớn update intelligence on opposing sides’ boards as they were kept hidden from each other. The Operational Art of War IV (TOAW4) provides a hyper-detailed tabletop-like experience, with cardboard counters bearing NATO symbols moving around on colorful hex maps, with exponentially more variables than any referee could have ever been expected to lớn traông chồng.


On its face, this is simply moving unit stacks around, but there’s a lot going on under the surface


Talonsoft has been working on TOAW for twenty years now, and the lakiểm tra edition packs an incredible amount of simulation fidelity into lớn an attractive digital wargame experience that spans more than 200 years of military history. TOAW4 includes Napoleonic and American Civil War scenargame ios, as well as modern operations lượt thích Desert Storm and the October 1973 Arab-Israeli War. For Vietnam giới, the game comes with a decent scenario selection that hits some of the larger battles và campaigns of the war: Dien Bien Phu in 1954, Ia Drang, the 1968 Tet Offensive, and the three year period 1965-68, among mỏi several others.

The Operational Art of War IV is deceptively easy lớn play – on its face, it’s a simple matter of moving unit stacks around, spending action points for travel và combat. But there’s an astonishing amount of computation going on just beneath the surface, and you’ll have to lớn giảm giá with weather conditions that degrade roads, supply concerns, và morale. TOAW4 allows you to handle both large and small formations, and plan out attacks tactically, calling in support assets lượt thích air tư vấn và artillery, & picking the units you want involved in any fight. The fastidious cấp độ of detail built inlớn the simulation makes it a pretty good system for modelling the morale và propaganda aspects of Vietphái mạnh, something many WW2 games don’t trương mục for.

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VIETNAM ‘65

Publisher:Slitherine, Ltd.Purchase:Fanatical

The hex-based presentation is a bit deceptive here, because ESS’ Vietnam ‘65 isn’t a traditional wargame. Properly understood, it’s a solitaire strategy game about counterinsurgency (COIN) warfare, and one that breaks the normal boundaries set in wargaming. While Vietnam ‘65 still handles manoeuvre and combat, these are boiled down to lớn rather basic levels — you won’t find highly specific historic battalions, lovingly recreated with accurate equipment and vehicles. Instead, you have sầu unit types – infantry, commandos, helicopters, armoured personnel carriers (APCs) – that function like chess pieces as you attempt khổng lồ win the“hearts and minds” of the civilian population & maintain public tư vấn for the war baông chồng in the U.S.


The propagandomain authority element of Vietphái nam comes into lớn the forefront here, making it important to score even relatively meaningless victories if it means a chance at shoring up political support at home by sending high enemy casualty counts back to the Pentagon. At the same time, you’ll need to build rapport with the local population, who will in turn supply intelligence on the locations of enemy forces.

While mix in the Ia Drang Valley in 1965, Vietnam ‘65 also incorporates the Nixon Administration’s 1970s“Vietnamization” policy of training ARnước ta forces with the goal of ultimately handing off major responsibilities và withdrawing American forces – a strategy that had mixed results in Vietphái mạnh, & again as a similar program has been attempted in Afghanisrã. Vietnam ‘65 is truly asymmetric – you and the computer are playing different games, & thus it’s better able to portray the essential frustration of the Vietphái mạnh War than most traditional wargames have been.

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ARMA 3: THE UNSUNG VIETNAM WAR MOD

Developer:The Unsung Modding TeamAvailable:Steam Workcửa hàng, ModDB(More information)

We’ve sầu covered ArmA here quite a bit, because even though it’s not a traditional wargame, it is a remarkably powerful và robust simulation sandbox for combined arms military operations, provided you’re willing to spover some time setting parameters, downloading mods, and designing missions. The Unsung Vietnam giới War Mod has been around in some form since Operation Flashpoint, emerging anew with each iteration on Bohemia Interactive’s military series.

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To create the maps, vehicles, aircraft, và weapons that appear in the mod, the Unsung team has amassed a database of satellite imagery, ‘60s & ‘70s aerial photography, topographic maps, and on-the-ground photographs. The result is still a bit mixed visually, but overall the effect is very convincing, & ArmA 3 allows for a large number of players to lớn join in company-level operations through the jungles & farmlvà of Unsung. With the lachạy thử version, Emang đến, they’ve sầu added actual combat transmissions as radio chatter, several MiG variants, tons of new weapons, và even punji stakes.

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RISING STORM 2: VIETNAM

Publisher:Tripwire InteractivePurchase:Fanatical

Rising Storm 2: Vietphái mạnh is here because it’s something of a bridge between the kind of rigid devotion khổng lồ historicity we usually look for in wargames, và the more Hollywood-style nonsense that you generally find in videogames in general. It’s not an even split: Rising Storm 2 has both its feet firmly planted in first-person shooter territory, & thus has a lot more in common with Battlefield or call of Duty than anything Gary Grigsby ever put his name on.


It also serves as an opportunity lớn look at how the Vietnam giới War is usually portrayed in games, and what games are interested in when they handle Vietnam. While Rising Storm 2 is a solid shooter, it’s also a jumble of imagery và stereotypes culled primarily from Vietnam giới war movies – here’s the pack of Luckies and Ace of Spades strapped to a soldier’s steel pot, there’s the requisite Creedence Clearwater Revival and Jimày Hendrix tracks. Add in a couple 1st Cavalry Division patches and rice paddies, và you’ve got yourself Vietnam: The Game. Chechồng the options, & you’ll even find visual filters expressly labelled ‘Woodstoông chồng Experience’ (a trippy psychedelic filter) & a sepia-toned, grainy ‘War Movie’ look.

But Rising Storm 2: Vietphái mạnh doesn’t have sầu any pretenses about being a vehicle for historical insights, and what it does, it does well. The period-appropriate weapons feel convincing, the music is right, và it’s fun to lớn go screaming around the treetops in an AH-1 Cobra attaông xã chopper. It’s a game that’s meant to lớn be fun và feel like the movies look, & it accomplishes both to lớn a T.

Other Vietphái mạnh War Games

This menu has proven a little leaner than expected, so I thought I’d summarise some additional options not featured, just in case anyone was interested in checking them out:

Vietcong & Conflict Vietnam

Fine examples of tactical shooters phối during the period. The former is supposed to have inspired a lot of the content in the Unsung War gian lận above.

Men of War: Vietnam

One of the weakest of all the MoW games, so didn’t really deserve a mention above sầu. But, if you wanted some small-unit tactical squad action, this is one place lớn look.

Heliborne

We’ve looked at this before. It’s an interesting multiplayer-based game where two teams fight each other in helicopters và take over bản đồ points by shuttling troops and supplies. It’s neat, but it’s not very popular so servers are a bit empty.

Campaign Series: Vietnam

This is a new game from the creator of Campaign Series: Middle East, and it’s still in development. It’s on traông xã khổng lồ turn up later this year và if it’s good, will earn itself a place above.


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