May 23, 2017 Update from GMT Games

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Hi everyone!

First off, I just want to publicly thank the 103 attendees at our recent GMT Weekend at the Warehouse. This was our 33rd time running the event, so you'd think it would be "old hat" for me by now. But there's still something just very cool and fun about having so many old and new friends gathered in our warehouse hanging out, sharing meals, "swapping lies", and playing games. 

I especially want to thank the designers and developers who attended, and played their published and upcoming games with all comers, sometimes very late into the night. You guys really help make this event something special. I get a lot of email after the weekend thanking us for hosting it, and they almost alway include something like "and I got to meet and play a game with <insert name of one of our many amazing designers/developers>!!!" So thanks for taking the time to come and hang out with some of the guys who play your games.

Please indulge me for a couple more "thank you's" before I move on with the update. First, to Mike Lam, who has been faithfully running the Down in Flames Aces events for virtually all of these warehouse weekends (as well as at Consimworld Expo). The amount of work Mike puts in to keep detailed records of pretty much every pilot from every player who's ever sat down at one of our DIF Aces tables is amazing. Seriously, fairly often we'll have a guy come in and say something like, "I haven't been to a Weekend since 2005", and Mike will check his notes and respond with some version of "Right. You have three American pilots, one German, and a Russian." And then proceed to list their names, victories, and any special skills, while the returnee stares in amazement (the rest of us are used to it by now!) And Mike is that perfect mix of veteran player who knows all the rules and tricks blended with a guy who's incredibly newbie-friendly. He's created a culture where veteran players can't wait to play Aces again, and new players get lots of help and encouragement as they jump in and learn the game. I couldn't possibly ask for a better ambassador of both Down in Flames and GMT than Mike Lam. Thanks Mike!

My final thank you is for Elizabeth, Letitia, Araceli, Deb, Cha, Tracy, and Stacie, for the long hours they put in and the amazing service they provided at the Weekend (and, truth be told, ALWAYS). As so many of you guys know, these ladies are very much the heartbeat of GMT, the ones who quietly behind-the-scenes keep our dual lifeblood of quality products and over-the-top customer service flowing. I'm proud to work with all of them, and greatly appreciate both the skills and the heart that they bring to our Weekends at the Warehouse and to our company on an everyday basis. Thanks ladies! The tri-tip today is on me! 

Here are a few pics from this latest gathering.

We do now have the dates for our Fall 2017 Weekend. It will be Thursday-Sunday, October 5-8. Come and join us for a weekend of fun!

Physical and Digital Systems Update

As the guys who attended the Weekend at the Warehouse know, our digital updates hit a big snag this spring when it became clear that the custom programmers who were coding the P500 pieces of our new software were just not up to the task. The software delivery was way behind schedule, but the bigger problem was that it didn't work - at least not at a speed and with functionality that we needed and our customers would appreciate. So I fired them. To cut past the drama, we are now working with a company that we have ten years of experience with, making major upgrades to P500 software that we already know works. 

So the bad news is it looks like it'll be late July or early August before our digital system transition is in place. In the meantime, the good news is that we're continuing to work on our physical systems (we have a Warehouse Efficiency Expert from UPS in-house all week this week to help us, and already we have identified numerous methods, organizational improvements, and equipment that will help us handle our growth more efficiently.) We'll be implementing an initial stage of upgrades from this evaluation/recommendation period right away, with periodic equipment and process improvements scheduled over the coming year or two. Our intent, as with the digital systems, is to optimize our operations so that we can more easily handle the continued growth of our product line and popularity of our games, and so big volume spikes (like really large P500 orders for a game or the yearly sale) don't overwhelm our ability to fulfill them. 

As some of you have noted, we have intentionally been constraining our operations at various times during this systems improvement process, to reflect the fact that it is taking up a lot of our bandwidth, and also because we feel like we have to put the brakes on growth a bit until we have the systems in place that will allow us to handle it. 

One of the ancillary results of this, and of our customers' continued support for our games and the P500 programs, is that we now have FIFTY games on our P500 list that have "Made the Cut." Now it's true that many of those games are not yet ready to publish (design teams are still finalizing development, etc), but the fact is, we're not systemically prepared to print, say, five of those a month for the next ten months! Our systems would implode. So, we've slowed production down a bit, and new orders are still growing steadily, so the Made the Cut games have ballooned in number. As a result, I didn't add any new P500 games to the list last month and I'm not adding any this month, either. I know of at least one game that I need to add in June, but in the main, we're going to add sparingly for the next few months until the digital systems are up and running. We feel like that's the prudent thing to do, and also have confidence (and hope!) that when we're ready to start adding more games to the P500 list again, you guys will still be with us, ready and willing to order them. Thanks again, everyone, for your support and understanding as we work to improve our digital systems and our order, fulfillment, and warehouse organization and throughput.

O K, that's where we are on the Upgrades front. Let's move on to the rest of this month's news....

Thunder Alley Crew Chief Expansion Now in Stock

Yesterday we received new copies of the Thunder Alley Crew Chief (boxed) Expansion (designed by Richard Launius) from our friends at Nothing Now Games. These expand the possibilities and detail of your Thunder Alley experience, and include 236 new cards! The expansions are in the warehouse and ready for sale now. The price is $18 + shipping (2 lbs). Just click the link below for details on the Expansion and to order:

New Solitaire Rating for Ancient Civilizations of the Inner Sea

Solitaire players, rejoice! Co-designer Mark McLaughlin has recently added some cool new Solitaire systems to this game! We've updated ACotIS' P500 page with the following info:

Extensive Solitaire Rules allow any scenario, including the basic game, to be played by a single player against one or more Non-Player Civilizations (NPCs). The NPC component may be peaceful or hostile, or change their attitude depending on the actions of the player. 
Historical War Game Scenarios  offer particularly aggressive 
Solitaire  system-controlled opponents for those who want to fight to expand or defend their civilization.

For those of you who'd like more information on how what the solitaire game in Ancient Civilizations of the Inner Sea looks like, here are links to three recent InsideGMT articles that take you inside the experience:

Tank Duel Gets a Solitaire System!

At the recent Weekend at the Warehouse, I learned from T ank Duel developer Jason Carr that he and Mike have developed a full fledged solitaire bot for the game! I love this, as I still play a ton of games solitaire, and was afraid I'd be unable to get this one to the table much (though I love the topic) due to not having a ready opponent. 

I think this will serve, among other things, to drive the P500 numbers higher for Tank Duel, as I've found that there are a lot of players out there like me, for whom the buying decision is definitely affected by whether a game includes a solitaire play option. So thanks, Jason and Mike, for the hard work you've put in to add this functionality to the game. 

For more details, please see the Project Updates section below, where Jason gives us more information on the solitaire bot.

New Games from Ludifolie and Vae Victis

We've recently received game shipments from our friends at Ludifolie and Vae Victis. These games come packaged in ziplocks and include English language rules. They are now in our warehouse and available for sale. To get more information and/or place an order, just click the links below:

Ligny and Wavre 1815 (Ludifolie)
No Man's Land (Ludifolie - back in stock)

Storms in the East (Vae Victis)

This Month in InsideGMT!

Here are links to this month's new InsideGMT articles:

And, in case you missed them, here are links to our previous month's InsideGMT articles: 

As always,  I  invite you guys to head over to, check out the articles, leave us your comments, and tell us what else you'd like to see us do to make  InsideGMT even better!

GMT Weekend at the Warehouse October 5-8, 2017 
As I noted above, the Fall Weekend at the Warehouse dates are now official. 
For those new to the event, this is mostly an open gaming event, although we do have tournaments from time to time. We expect about 100 gamers to attend, and space is limited, so please get your reservation in to the office ladies (call, chat, or email) as soon as possible.
There are several hotels within a few miles of our offices. The closest one, The Sequoia Inn, blocks rooms for our attendees at special rates. The hotels reservation # is 559-582-0339. Tell them you want the "GMT Group Block" rate. They have already blocked rooms for us for October, so feel free to go ahead and make reservations whenever you are ready. 

Keep up with GMT Online

Virtually every day, we announce new information or show off upcoming products or give you a peek under the hood of our new designs in our various online sites and forums. For you guys looking to keep up with us online, here's where you can find us. Drop in and start a conversation!


That's it for the news bytes from me for this time.   Here's what you'll find in the rest of today's update:
- Charge and Shipping Update
- Production Outlook
- P500s
- Project Updates and Sample Art
- P500 Reprint Update
- Website File Additions
Thanks, as always, for your support of GMT Games! 
Enjoy the games!

Charging and Shipping Schedule

On Tuesday, May 30th, we'll begin shipping both Time of Crisis and the Next War Supplement #1 .  

The next items to ship will be  1960: The Making of the President which  should begin shipping roughly June 15th, and Colonial Twilight, which we'll ship near the end of June.
Our next P500 charge will be next Thursday, June 1st, for 1960: The Making of the President. Then, on Tuesday, June 13, we'll charge for  Colonial Twilight

To avoid any delays in your game shipment, please make sure you've updated your charge cards on our website before we charge. If you use the "Pay by Check" P500 option, please send your checks in by the above dates. Thanks!
Tentative Production  Schedule
Here's our most current Tentative Production Schedule from Tony and Mark. 

Games with a ** following their entry are currently at the printer (we're a little more certain about scheduling on these).


June 15th, 2017

Late June, 2017
Colonial Twilight **

July, 2017
August, 2017
Unconditional Surrender 2nd Printing **   
Unconditional Surrender Mounted Map Set **   
American Revolution Tri Pack
Brandywine Reprint
September, 2017

October, 2017
Wild Blue Yonder
Space Empires: Replicators
At Any Cost
Welcome to Centerville
Hitler's Reich

Remainder of 4Q, 2017
Skies Above the Reich

#= Although at least one of these is going to be "ready" sooner, John has decided to achieve some operational and cost synergies by printing all three games together in Q1, 2018.

We're not adding any new P500 items this month. Please check out (and order!) some of these recent P500 additions:

Recent P500 Additions:

The Battle of Rhode Island  (Volume IX in our BoAR Series): 393 Orders to Date

Apocalypse Road:  300 Orders to Date

Grand Prix Track Pack: 183 Orders to Date

Musket & Pike Dual Pack:  569 Orders to Date

Golden Gate Park198 Orders to Date

Red Storm: 469  Orders to Date

SpaceCorp: 1046  Orders to Date

Tank Duel: Enemy in the Crosshairs: 437  Orders to Date

Battles of the Warrior Queen: 735  Orders to Date

Wing Leader:Blitz598 Orders to Date

Ariovustus: A Falling Sky Expansion: 1,236 Orders to Date

Commands & Colors: Medieval: 932 Orders to Date

No Retreat 5: The Western Front :  425 Orders to Date
Project Updates and Sample Art
In this section, we'll be passing along updated status on a variety of projects, generally direct from the designers or developers. 

Component Sneak Peeks:

Combining the talents of artists Kurt Miller and Charlie Kibler, here's a look at three sample cards for Pendragon, shipping later this year:

Design Updates:

Mr. President - designer Gene Billingsley

As many of you know, I was in the midst of streamlining the systems for Mr. President late last year, when I suddenly lost virtually all of my design time due to the systems transitions that needed my attention at GMT. So, for months, really, the game mostly just sat there, neglected.

A couple months ago, though, I finally started getting a few time cycles for design, and I worked my schedule around so that I could devote every Friday to working on the game. This has helped a LOT with focus, as it's really hard for me to do work on something as intense and involved as a game design in dribs and drabs of an hour or two every once in a while.

So, gradually over the past couple months, the reworked, more streamlined version of Mr. President has taken shape. I've devoted much of this week to working on the game, mostly integrating the new systems, updating counters, and updating the Expanded Sequence of Play as I prepare to publicly test at least major parts of the game (or maybe privately test it if the first public tests don't go so well :-) ) at the Consimworld Expo in Tempe.

To be clear, the previous version of the game played pretty well, and it definitely immersed you in a good story, which is one of my major design goals for the game. But all that detail REALLY slowed the game down; it was taking 20+ hours to finish a game, which was, well, unacceptable, at least to me. It was JUST TOO MUCH. So I've put on my old developer's hat and taken another shot at a new version of the game, keeping virtually all the cards and "story" aspect of it, but cleaning up the systems. I've also created a new version of the turn sequence that allows the game to surprise you with timing of game-created events while giving you plenty of ability to plan and work your plan within an uncertain domestic and international environment. This sequence is going to cut playing time significantly. HOW significantly is something we'll begin to answer next week as we test.

After the CSW Expo, I'll have my list of "things I have to fix." Once I get started on those, I'll start getting you guys a more regular stream of InsideGMT articles again, so you can see how the revamped Mr. President plays.

Thanks, in the meantime, for the massive P500 order support for this game, and for the help and encouragement so many of you have given me.

- Gene

Pendragon: The Fall of Roman Britian- designer Marc Gouyon-Rety

Volko Ruhnke, Vesa Arponen and Oerjan Ariander have been hard at work on Pendragon's non-player bots, who are now complete and quite impressive. At the same time, we compiled all the latest playtesters' feedback in order to finalize the rulebook, player aids and deck, which has allowed us to make available to Mark Simonitch and Charlie Kibler all the game material as of May the 4th (Star Wars day...), for them to start working on the production versions. The only outstanding item as of today is the Playbook, which is 90% complete, and should be ready within a couple weeks at most.

I'm sharing a picture of the fully up-to-date game set I brought to the Stack convention that took place on May 5-8th in Montreal, which was played enthusiastically by veterans and COIN rookies alike!

Cheers, Marc

Tank Duel: developer Jason Carr

It's been a busy month for the Tank Duel team. We played a lot of games of Tank Duel at the GMT Weekend at the Warehouse; thank you to everyone who stopped by to play a few games with us and share their feedback and ideas. We are working through the feedback from the Weekend, and have already made a few tweaks to the card layout based on suggestions from those sessions.

We also had a live demonstration of the Solitaire System that we announced at the Warehouse. This is a full solitaire "bot" which runs enemy tanks (German or Soviet!) against the player in a variety of scenarios. It's still very work-in-progress, but it beat our volunteer demo player, Stephen Lahl, handily. Big "tanks" to Steve for volunteering to play for the demo session. Again, much feedback was collected and we're working to fix a few 'bugs' in the system. The next big change to the Solitaire bot will be for Mike and I to incorporate a more sophisticated movement system that can adapt to controlling objectives and attempting to dislodge players from them.

Mike and I continue working on draft rules and we are getting closer to playtesting. Thank you to everyone who has reached out with an interest in playtesting Tank Duel; we hope to get some information to you in the next couple of months.

~ Jason Carr, Developer

P500 Reprint News and Tracking

Here's the current status of all the games on our P500 reprint list. Please help us determine what to print by pre-ordering any of these that interest you. Thanks for your help! 

Here's the current P500 Reprint list - with current order totals and a +/- order growth since last month:

Fields of Fire  - 2nd Ed. - 1,167 Orders (+33 )
Unconditional Surrender - 674 Orders (+42)
Barbarossa: AGN  - 669 Orders (+11)
The Hunters 3rd Printing - 614 Orders (+33)
Fire in the Lake, 2nd Printing - 535 Orders (+57)
Cataphract - 483 Orders (+8)
Ardennes '44 - 482 Orders (+24)
Barbarossa: AGS - 481 Orders (+11)
SPQR Dlx.   - 435 Orders (+13)
Andean Abyss - 434 Orders (+23)
Barbarossa: AG Center 2nd Ed.- 429 Orders (+21)
Space Empires , 3rd Printing - 372 Orders (+19)
Navajo Wars - 358 Orders (+16)
Combat Commander: Pacific - 274 Orders (+15)
This Accursed Civil War - 271 Orders (-12)
Next War: Korea - 256 Orders (+34)
Talon: - 249 Orders (+15)
Red Winter - 233 Orders (+21)
1989 - 192 Orders (+9)
Brandywine - 190 Orders (+0)
Falling Sky, 2nd Printing: 169 Orders (+30)
Roads to Leningrad 2nd Ed.  - 140 Orders (+12)
Dominant Species, 5th Printing:  129 Orders (+34) 129
Combat Comm. BP 4: New Guinea: - 121 Orders (+15)
Cuba Libre, 3rd Printing: 90 Orders (+13)
New Game Support Files, Vassal/Cyberboard, and Sneak Peeks
Here are new support files we've added to our website since our last update. Enjoy!
Game Support:  
  • None this time 

  • None this time

P500 Sneak Peeks

Your Friends at GMT Games
Toll Free Order and Support Line: 800-523-6111