Three Moves Ahead

Three Moves Ahead


Three Moves Ahead is the leading strategy game themed podcast on the internet. Every week a panel of knowledgeable gamers with strong opinions meets to talk about the strategy and war games of the day, design issues and games in the wider world.


Three Moves Ahead 371: 3MA After Dark  

Three Moves Ahead is serious business. We spend weeks - sometimes months - planning stimulating topics and tantalizing shows. But this week it's time to unwind. It's time to pour some scotch, dim the lights, and talk about whatever's on our minds. For the first time ever, the Three Moves Ahead team is all on the show at the same time: Rob, Bruce, Michael, and Troy "I keep bookstores in business because I don't trust technology and hate trees" Goodfellow. Also, be sure to stick around after the show and get a glimpse of professionalism at its finest.

Three Moves Ahead 370: Dean Essig  

Bruce welcomes award-winning game designer Dean Essig of The Gamers to talk about his long history of designing wargames. Dean's experience in the military and attention to detail have helped him create long-lasting series that model combat on several different levels. Dean and Bruce discuss the process of playtesting, the challenges of tactical, battalion, and operational level games, double-blind gaming, and why Illinois is such a great state.

Three Moves Ahead 369: The Banner Saga 2  

WARNING: The Banner Saga 2 is a story-driven game. Certain plot points will be talked about. Major plot points from the first game are discussed. Such is life in a podcast where the point is to talk about what happens in video games. This week Rob Zacny and Fraser Brown talk about Banner Saga 2, the sequel to the Kickstarter darling that made a splash with its gorgeous graphics and brutal gameplay. The decisions are harder, the battles are more interesting, and lots of people still die.

Three Moves Ahead 368: Dark Reign: The Future of War  

This month's patron-selected game is 1997's Dark Reign: The Future of War. It wasn't the prettiest game, or even the best game. But it was an RTS that existed in the glorious sepia-tinted days when the genre could do no wrong and even the more hamfisted attempts were at least competent given the sliding scale of the time. Rob, David Heron, and Troy "These RTS games make my rheumatism flare up" Goodfellow talk about Dark Reign, the 90's, and KMFDM somehow.

Three Moves Ahead 367: Bite-sized Strategy  

Rob, David Heron, and Troy "It's dignity, gah - don't you even know dignity when you see it?" Goodfellow get together to talk about strategy games that don't take 100 hours to play. Whether you're burned out on the sprawling grand strategy games that take up more time than most community college degrees or you just don't have enough time left in the day after pursuing your community college degree, shorter games can be better. But why aren't there a lot of compact, quick-to-play strategy games? Why does the general gaming public hate the ones that do exist? Our panel tries to crack the case of the easily digestible strategy game and ultimately leaves slightly depressed.

Three Moves Ahead 366: Modern Warfare  

Bruce is joined by game designer Mitch Land to talk about the Next War series of games and modern warfare. Modeling modern warfare is its own challenge as designers attempt to get the most accurate data possible and then abstract it to a playable game. Mitch talks about modeling and performance data, why aircraft carriers are important, and the processing of printing and publishing a game.

Three Moves Ahead 365: Rimworld  

Rowan Kaiser, Gita Jackson, and Jonathan Bolding join Troy "Why do I always have to clean the airlock" Goodfellow to talk about Rimworld. Rimworld joins a prestigious line of games in the relatively new genre of "It's like Dwarf Fortress, BUT - " by adding its own sci-fi survival twist. While still in Early Access, Rimworld has recently made its way to Steam to bring its procedurally-generated madness to the masses.

Three Moves Ahead 364: Pet Peeves  

Certain sins are unforgivable. Poor interface, an over-abundance of tooltips, and apparently ship designers. Let's get one thing straight: I - Michael, who writes these notes every week - like ship designers. I liked Gratuitous Space Battles, I like them GalCiv, I like them any way I can get them. So while I've never been on the show to defend my case on this particular topic, I'm writing the notes. Do I get to editorialize? Sure I do. Who's going to stop me? Troy? Ship designers are always a delight. If you don't like them, then this week you can listen to Rob, T.J. Hafer, and Rowan Kaiser go through their lists of strategy game pet peeves.

Three Moves Ahead 363: Sid Meier's Pirates!  

Rob, Fraser, and Troy "I'm tired of swabbing the poop deck" Goodfellow get together to revisit Sid Meier's Pirates! We all know who Sid Meier is, and we all what pirates are. So let's just cut to what you're here for: Troy "I'm wanted on three continents for my ample booty" Goodfellow, Troy "My parrot crapped on my shoulder" Goodfellow, Troy "Ramming broadsides is my specialty" Goodfellow, Troy "How do I make a sandwich with two hooks" Goodfellow, Troy "I've got barnacles but I can't say where" Goodfellow, Troy "Stop calling me 'Shark Bait'" Goodfellow

Three Moves Ahead 362: Alternate Histories  

Rob Zacny, Rowan Kaiser, and TJ Hafer range the hills of Gettysburg and traverse the Pacific in a show that talks about games that alter the course of history. Hearts of Iron IV inspired this discussion about how we can change the outcome of historical events to something even more plausible than reality.

Three Moves Ahead 361: Pacific War Strategic Games  

Bruce welcomes back game designer Mark Herman to talk about games covering the Pacific War in World War II. Mark's expertise comes in the form of his two Pacific games, Pacific War (1985) and Empire of the Sun (2005). Bruce and Mark cover a wide variety of board games, diving into what makes or breaks a strategic game in this theater.

Three Moves Ahead 360: Hearts of Iron IV  

Rob is joined by Bruce, Jonathan Bolding, and Fraser Brown to discuss the latest in Paradox Interactive's stable of historical games, Hearts of Iron IV. This latest entry in the series returns us to World War II, except it's not always World War II, but that's kind of the point, except when it's not. Despite a few glaring oversights in documentation, the panel has plenty of good things to say about the joy of being "historish". Tune in to find out: is the whole game great, or just Parts of Iron?

Three Moves Ahead 359: Chess in 2016  

The inmates are running the asylum as Three Moves Ahead producer Michael Hermes takes over the show to talk about the state of chess in 2016. Joining Michael is chess professional and Youtuber John Bartholomew, an FIDE International Master and all-around chess guru. There are many reasons to be excited about chess right now, such as the boom in Youtube and streaming and the dynamic state of the professional scene. John and Michael go over some of the tools available to modern players, the sites they get excited about, and how St. Louis has become the chess capital of the US.

Three Moves Ahead 358: Battlefleet: Gothic Armada  

This week's show features another game chosen by our Patreon backers: Battlefleet: Gothic Armada. In the grim dark future there is only war, but here in the present there is... well, still only war, just mostly in the form of Games Workshop games with "war" in the title. Rob, Rowan Kaiser, and freelance writer Jonathan Bolding to talk about this boardgame adaptation and agree it's a gorgeous visual feast that also embraces the glorious tradition of Warhamminess.

Three Moves Ahead 357: Total War: WARHAMMER  

Good news, Games Workshop fans: your long wait is over. After literally days without a single new Warhammer or Warhammer 40K video game being launched, Total War: WARHAMMER is upon us. Fraser Brown and Dan Griliopoulos join Rob to talk about the latest entry in the Total War series that takes the series to the mildly ahistorical setting of Warhammer. The reviews have been positive and the verdict is a solid recommendation from our panel as Total Warhammer puts the fun back into Total War.

Three Moves Ahead 356: Ashes of the Singularity  

Ashes of the Singularity is hard to pin down. It's not fast, like Starcraft. It doesn't have the same swagger as Grey Goo. The single-player campaign leaves much to be desired. Yet there are still some interesting mechanics that make it a point of interest on the RTS map, a giant ball of string that, while not as much fun as Mount Rushmore, was good for at least one fun picture.

Three Moves Ahead 355: Stellaris  

It's a very special, gas giant-sized podcast as the panel discusses Paradox's newest grand strategy game, Stellaris. Stellaris takes the Paradox formula and flings it into space, replacing trade merchants with space merchants, warships with space warships, and regular coalitions with space coalitions. Not content with one, two, or even three guests, Rob welcomes Rowan Kaiser, Austin Walker, Fraser Brown, and Sean Sands to the show to get their take on the new game. Some people love it, some people have conflicted feelings, and then there's Rowan.

Three Moves Ahead 354: Offworld Trading Company  

Game designer Soren Johnson returns to the show to talk about his new game, Offworld Trading Company. Built in spirit of M.U.L.E., Offworld Trading Company is an economic RTS that has the player hunting for resources and playing the market. Soren talks about recent changes to the game, the pros and cons of Early Access, and the benefits of having hyper-competitive players.

Three Moves Ahead 353: Twilight Struggle  

It's an uncommonly ebullient episode of Three Moves Ahead as Rob, Julian, and Troy "Please Speak Louder Into My Bowtie, Comrade" Goodfellow talk about Twilight Struggle on the PC. This Cold War era board game has been translated to a shiny new computerized version which, despite some minor technical drawbacks, has the entire panel (and Bruce) happy with the results.

Three Moves Ahead 352: Atlantic Fleet  

Our Patreon patrons have spoken and they chose Atlantic Fleet, a World War II naval warfare game available on mobile and PC. Rob, Bruce, and Troy "Lining Up Shots to Fire Out the Rear" Goodfellow find Atlantic Fleet to be a solid investment for $10, even if there are a few nagging flaws.

Video player is in betaClose