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In This WWII Game You Have To Decide: Is The Mission Worth The Lives Of My Men?
Take the objective or fall back to spare your men? These aren’t consequence-free choices, and they’re not added for dramatic effect. In Burden of Command, a new “World War II tactical leadership RPG,” you assume command of a fictional company within the Army’s 7th Infantry Regiment — the “Cottonbalers” — to make life-and-death calls based on actual historical scenarios.
“I don’t consider Burden of Command a war game,” Luke Hughes, the game’s project lead, told Task & Purpose. No, this is something different, for sure: Think Band of Brothers, but turn-based.
“We want to put you in a position where making those tactical decisions carries with it a burden,” Fernando Rizo, a Marine veteran and the marketing lead for Burden of Command, told Task & Purpose. “There’s a burden in being that guy who has to make those calls, calls where somebody might die. And somebody dying might be the right decision to accomplish the mission — and we don’t think a lot of games are doing that right now.”
The Cottonbalers likely spent more time in combat than any other regiment in the Army during World War II, fighting from North Africa to Italy and then Germany. That made them perfect fit for the game, Hughes said.
A “leadership RPG” sounds like something the Pentagon would push down the pipe to improve field-grade officers’ PowerPoint skills. But in terms of gameplay, it means balancing gains on the battlefield with losses in morale, and these take the form of “leadership moments.”
As a company commander, you have points to spend on abilities — directing fire, moving your men, and rallying them. But each decision brings benefits and drawbacks. Personally leading an assault can boost morale and increase the effectiveness of the troops in a squad, but puts your commander at risk, and also limits your ability oversee the movement and actions of other squads.
In one scenario, one of your officers is hit, and you have to decide between leaving him behind to take out an enemy artillery position, or abandoning the objective altogether to save a friend and a valuable leader.
“We’re trying to be historically authentic and emotionally authentic,” Hughes explained. “Being historically authentic is that thing we’re all used to: It means being historically accurate, and respectful to the real people who served and died and what their experiences were, and not BS.”
The leadership moments are based on unit records and after action reports of the real-life Cottonbalers, researched by the Burden of Command team. History buffs will find much to love here.
“I advise the writers that whenever you can find a real historical moment that nobody would believe, that’s one of our sweet spots,’” Hughes said. “And then we’re geeky enough to put a little book icon next to it, so you can scroll over and see the real history.”
At one point in the game, players get ambushed by an enemy marksman and face a choice: Would you step out do draw sniper fire?
“It sounds very Hollywood, but this colonel in the Cottonbalers, by God, he did it,” Hughes said. “He stood up, drew their fire, and his guys shot the sniper dead when he exposed himself.”
Are you braver — or smarter — than a colonel in the shit? Burden of Command may give you a chance to prove it.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States will leave "a small peacekeeping group" of 200 American troops in Syria for a period of time after a U.S. pullout, the White House said on Thursday, as President Donald Trump pulled back from a complete withdrawal.
Trump claims border wall is under construction 'right now' using fence repair footage from 5 months ago
With a legal fight challenge mounting from state governments over the Trump administration's use of a national emergency to construct at the U.S.-Mexico border, the president has kicked his push for the barrier into high gear.
On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted a time-lapse video of wall construction in New Mexico; the next day, he proclaimed that "THE WALL IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION RIGHT NOW"
But there's a big problem: The footage, which was filmed more than five months ago on Sep. 18, 2018, isn't really new wall construction at all, and certainly not part of the ongoing construction of "the wall" that Trump has been haggling with Congress over.
Group of American vets detained in Haiti on weapons charges brought back to US, arrested upon landing
A group comprised of former U.S. military veterans and security contractors who were detained in Haiti on weapons charges has been brought back to the United States and arrested upon landing, The Miami-Herald reported.
The men — five Americans, two Serbs, and one Haitian — were stopped at a Port-au-Prince police checkpoint on Sunday while riding in two vehicles without license plates, according to police. When questioned, the heavily-armed men allegedly told police they were on a "government mission" before being taken into custody.
The Army allegedly missed this soldier's stomach cancer for 4 years. His widow wants someone to answer for it
The widow of a soldier whose stomach cancer was allegedly overlooked by Army doctors for four years is mounting a medical malpractice lawsuit against the military, but due to a decades-old legal rule known as the Feres Doctrine, her case will likely be dismissed before it ever goes to trial.
Hand grenades from the last major battle of the Revolutionary War have repeatedly scrambled bomb squads in Virginia's capital
In an uh-oh episode of historic proportions, hand grenades from the last major battle of the Revolutionary War recently and repeatedly scrambled bomb squads in Virginia's capital city.
Wait – they had hand grenades in the Revolutionary War? Indeed. Hollow iron balls, filled with black powder, outfitted with a fuse, then lit and thrown.
And more than two dozen have been sitting in cardboard boxes at the Department of Historic Resources, undetected for 30 years.