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Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9: World War 3

Bush's Board Game Thing Episode 9

Bush's Board Game Thing Episode 9

Welcome back to to the Zatu Games blog! We’re back with another weekly recap of our favourite board game podcast. Bush’s Board Game Thing sees Andy Bush celebrating the wonderful world of board games and the experience of gaming with friends Jess Temby and Brian Murphy. Each week, expect passion, enthusiasm, and multiple trips through gaming wormholes. This podcast is powered by Zatu – we’re making sure the board game cogs keep on turning. Every week, I’ll be bringing you the best bits here on the blog and letting you shop the podcast! Today, we’re recapping Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9.

Historical Board Games

If you haven’t already listened to last week’s episode, you can click here to catch up. Alternatively, read our recap article right here on the Zatu blog.

Without further ado, let’s crack on with today’s episode. Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9 is all about history. We’re looking to the past with board games inspired by different historical eras. Do you think people can learn history by playing a historical board game? Bush certainly thinks so. In fact, he reckons that most of his historical knowledge comes from board games. Having hated the subject at school, he’s actually becoming quite the history enthusiast these days!

One of the games responsible for this change of heart is Target for Tonight. This is a one-player game about bombing raids over Germany during World War II. As the player, you’ll command an RAF bomber on a night mission and try to survive the raid. We’ll have lots more brilliant board games about history throughout this blog, so read on.

Old School

As always, our board game trio had a few questions for listeners over on Instagram. For Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9, we asked: is there a weird bit of history you remember from school which would make a good historical board game?

Before hearing from any of our listeners or Instagram followers, Brian was quick to inform us that he actually studied history at university! Make sure to listen to the episode in full if you want to learn a thing or two, courtesy of our very own Brian Murphy.

Meanwhile, listener Andrew wrote in about the defenestration of Prague. This was a particularly grisly moment in 17th Century Bohemia. For those of you who don’t know, to defenestrate someone means to throw them out of a window! Three Catholic officials almost met their ends this way in 1618, when Protestant activists threw them from the top floor window of the Bohemian Chancellory. This would definitely make a fantastic board game, although it could involve a fair bit of clean-up at the end…

5 Board Games Inspired by History

It wouldn’t be an episode of Bush’s Board Game Thing without some cracking board game recommendations! Here are some great historical board games for your consideration.

The COIN (Counterinsurgency) series by GMT Games is a must-have for history enthusiasts. These games are all about guerrilla warfare. Titles include Cuba Libre and Liberty or Death: The American Insurrection. Then there’s Pax Pamir. This a game about the race for power in 19th Century Afghanistan. You’ll play as Afghan leaders, dealing with Russian and British bids for colonial power. Next up, we’ve got Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan, which is about a famous battle of 1600. Several daimyo (feudal lords) actually switched sides during the battle, making for a thrilling, high-stakes board game. Finally, there’s the Great Statesmen series including Versailles 1919 and Pericles, games about the end of World War I and the Peloponnesian War respectively.

Twilight Struggle
Twilight Struggle Review – Components (Credit: GMT Games)

Twilight Struggle

In a betrayal that will itself surely go down in history, Bush and Brian held a secret lads night to play a game of Twilight Struggle online without Jess. Twilight Struggle is a two-player game about the Cold War, a decades-long conflict between the USSR and the USA. It’s currently one of the top 10 games overall Board Game Geek with more than 40,000 ratings, which is really saying something.

During the virtual game, Brian (playing as the USSR) did his best to turn the Cold War into a hot war, attempting to stage a coup at every opportunity. Eventually, Bush (playing as the USA) banned nuclear testing altogether. However, Brian nevertheless managed to start a nuclear war in the very first term of the game. A remarkable achievement indeed.

Brian’s Board Game Fact of the Week

Of course, it’s only right that we have a historical board game fact for Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9. Dating back as far as 3100 BCE, Senet is widely considered the oldest board game in the world. It has its origins in Ancient Egypt. While we aren’t exactly sure of the gameplay, scholars think it was a game about the journey to the afterlife. The word ‘senet’ means ‘passing’. Archaeologists have found senet sets in the tombs of pharaohs, from as far back as 2050 BCE!

Doing the Time Warp

Since we’re looking back on history in Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9, our trio asked Instagram followers this question. If you had a time machine and could go back to any era of history, which one would you pick?

Nicola wrote in and said she would definitely choose the Medieval period for its fashion-forward pointy hats. According to Nicola, they’re ideal for poking people on the tube and shoplifting tall stuff! Jason on the other hand chose the Tudor era, due to all the extravagant codpieces. Listener Gareth wants to go back to the Old West instead. We reckon duster coats and hats would make you feel pretty cool. Finally, Bush himself would like a trip back to Medieval times too. He reckons he’d look pretty dapper in a tunic. What do you think?

Back to the Future

That just about wraps things up for Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 9. What’s your favourite historical board game? Let us know over on Instagram Instagram and make sure to tune in next week for another episode. You can catch up on all previous episodes of Bush’s Board Game Thing on any streaming service. In the meantime, you can check out our podcast-approved collection right here on the Zatu website. There you can find all the games we’ve discussed on every episode of the podcast, all in one convenient place.

See you next week, gamers.