Don Chappell
  • 68, Male

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Don Chappell's Page

Latest Activity

Don Chappell joined Eric Walters's group

Revolution Games

Here's a group to talk about Revolution Games--the company, its wargames, reviews of their games, replays, and more.See More
Jun 30, 2019

Profile Information

Your introduction to consim gaming:
In 1960 as an eight year old Cub Scout, I kept seeing ads for a game called Gettysburg by the Avalon Hill Game Company in Boy's Life magazine. I badgered my Dad into buying a wargame, but he bought Tactics II instead. I got hooked anyway.

I started saving my money and buying AH's annual release, then semi-annual release through my high school years. As I was searching my college catalog (U.S. Naval Academy) for a major, I spotted a class titled: "War Gaming". It was in the Operations Analysis department, so I immediately committed to that as a major and haven't looked back.
Your favorite game(s):
As an Operations Analyst, I am obligated to challenge the measure of merit: "favorite". What does favorite mean? After all who would want to eat their favorite lunch every day, day after day? Who would only want their favorite ice cream and never any other flavor?

So to answer the damn question:

IF stranded on a desert island with a willing gaming partner, but only one game?: Advanced Squad Leader game system with all expansions and trick ponies. I haven't played in years, but no other game comes close in providing fresh challenges, and in being both a reasonable tactical simulation and great entertainment.

If you dropped by tonight, what would I suggest?: Wilderness War. The game is an amazing balance of symmetric and asymmetrical conflict. There are plenty of ways to play "out side the box". There is no perfect plan, even when things are going well, you are always in danger of losing. Very well balanced, but the game is allowed to be chaotic. Best written rules I've ever read.

The Monster Game that I can't get enough of: The Longest Day. Superb research on the terrain and OOB. When playing it feels like the historical accounts. I'd like to tweak the rules to allow alternate beaches and airborne drop zones, but would need to play several times before getting the confidence to make such changes. I love the logistics rules - focusing on the artillery "units of fire" captures all the logistical challenges but without a lot of overhead. Great game for a multiple player experience IF you can get enough guys with military style CPX (Command Post Exercise) experience gathered around so that everyone stays in their "boat lane". (Colonel Eric Walters and I tried this in 1984 and had some initial success, but the game was too big and the staff dissolved in a flurry of transfers, deployments, family obligations. He was a bright, up and coming Lieutenant back then. I wonder what went wrong?)

The social game I'm likely to be found playing: Apple to Apples. This is a game I can play on an even basis with my mentally handicapped son and even my wife likes it. It turns out that in real life, it's not about the accuracy of the OOB, the ratings of the generals, and whether or not the Panther should be modeled with a slow turret traverse.

You'll never have to twist my arm to play:
For The People;
We the People;
Empire of the Sun;
Atlantic Storm / Pacific Typhoon;
Air Baron;
Dungeons and Dragons
What game(s) are you currently playing (solitaire, FTF, PBEM, etc.) or wish to play next?
Game Mastering the Board Game Players Assoc. PBEM Tournament of For The People
What game(s) have you played recently?
Washington's War
Empire of the Sun
In general, how much time do you spend gaming?
A couple of hours each evening now that I'm hooked on PBEM
How big is your game collection?
Maybe 150 titles, plus magazines, equipment, pieces, etc.
About Me
Contrary to my frequently held opinion, I've been informed that it is NOT all about me!
Personal Interests (favorite activities, movies, shows, books, music, etc.)
Coaching Miracle League Baseball and TOPS (The Outreach Program for Soccer) are my main outside interests.

It took about 15 years after leaving the USMC, but I'm seriously back into the outdoor life... camping, hiking, hunting, fishing, going out to the boonies and getting the truck stuck and unstuck....

Don Chappell's Blog

Machine Gun Class

I had a nice afternoon, today. I got to teach some of the basics in Machine Gun tactics.

Without going into too much detail, we have a project going at work that involves putting a machine gun onto a "platform" that doesn't currently have one. (That seems adequately uninformative.) Naturally there are a bunch of mechanical engineers, electrical engineers and some software engineers involved and just as naturally they all know what they need to do to make this a successful… Continue

Posted on May 15, 2008 at 10:00pm — 5 Comments

Historical Accuracy and Wargames - Some Thoughts

In the fall of 2000, I got into what I thought was an interesting discussion about the nebulous, never-to-be-solved discussion about what constitutes *accuracy* in a wargame. Because it was off topic on the CSW For the People page, I moved it to the “Coffee Table”, where it promptly died. However, I came across these notes while looking for something… anything… to add to this site. Enjoy!

October 18, 2000

… I am fortunate beyond words that I have been able to… Continue

Posted on March 10, 2008 at 10:00pm — 4 Comments

Comment Wall (25 comments)

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At 5:58am on September 17, 2011, K. Wayne said…
This made me laugh, Don. I don't think I have been on this part of Consimworld either since I left you a "friend request" so no, I am not feeling unloved, but thanks for the affirmation. I do like the forums, though....
At 10:03pm on October 30, 2008, Tom Meier said…
Hello Don,

You still busy, busy?
At 4:31pm on June 12, 2008, John Kranz said…
Don, thanks for your comment back. I'll be sure to follow-up with you. Unfortunately, I can't undertake any other game convention travel for this year...but maybe next year!
At 4:39pm on June 10, 2008, John Kranz said…
Don...I didn't realize you are right in my neck of the woods. I work in Irving during the day at Williams Square. I'm moving from Garland to Plano shortly. Have to try and meet up at some point!
At 2:39pm on April 21, 2008, Mark Herman said…
I'll check it out...

At 2:16pm on March 19, 2008, Tom Meier said…
Hey, who left the door open....?
At 1:36pm on March 19, 2008, Peter Perla said…
Hi Don,

This place looks really dangerous! I have a lot of work to do but I am feelign the tug of the event horizon! Before being lost forever, let me say that I plan on signing up for your group later. I may have a little someting to say about the COnnections Wargamign conference last week. I had planned on being at WBC but a nephew is getting married and I may have to cancel or cut short my trip. Thoughtless kids!
At 5:51am on March 13, 2008, Steve Dixon said…
Don - I agree with you. I thank a WW2 vet each time I meet one. My mother is French and live four years of her childhood under Nazi occupation. I shudder to think what a world we would be in if the Axis had won....
At 10:10pm on March 12, 2008, Steve Dixon said…
Don - I serve as webmaster and VP south of the 70th Infantry Division Association. My grandfather served with the division during the war. I am always looking for connections to the 70th. If you care to see what I have done the last 12 years with the site you can go here:

I usually do not boast of the work that I have done but the site is one of the best, if not the best site on a unit that served during World War II.
At 9:55pm on March 12, 2008, Steve Dixon said…
Don, any relation to Chappell, Elmo L., 2LT, from Marietta, Georgia. He served with Company B, 274th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division? He earned the Silver Star with OLC for actions against the enemy (ETO) Feb. 22, 1945.

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