Episode Archive

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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.

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December 4, 2021 Rob got to check out a pre-alpha build of Company of Heroes 3's multiplayer, and now he's sitting down with lead gameplay designer Matt Philip and map designer Will Ward. Among the topics on the docket are how the flow and pacing of battles has changed from previous games in the series, keeping familiar factions fresh without betraying their identities, and the challenges of creating maps that appeal to high-level competitive players as well as casual weekend warriors.

Company of Heroes 3

November 19, 2021 Rowan, Jon, and Ian Boudreau talk about Against the Storm, an early access city-builder that forces you to abandon your cities after a set amount of time. How do these shorter runs affect how we approach the genre? What does a beaver need, on a deeper level, to be happy? And why were we so eager to do an episode on this when early access city-builders are thick on the ground these days?

Against the Storm

November 12, 2021 Rowan recruits Fanbyte's Steven Strom and long-lost guest Jason Wilson to take a look at Darkest Dungeon II in early access. That's right, five years later we finally put out an episode with Darkest Dungeon in the title. How does it differ from its predecessor? And which of the changes do we actually like? How do we feel about the fact that they can kiss now? How do we feel about a sequel that is deliberately smaller in scope than the original?

Darkest Dungeon II

November 5, 2021 Len and Ian Boudreau discuss Age of Empires 4, the long-awaited return of one of the RTS genre's defining franchises. What's new and what's been kept the same? And where would we like to see it go in the future? Okay, okay, I'll say the thing: wololo. Get it? It's funny because I said a thing you remember. Humor is when someone says a thing you remember.

Age of Empires 4

October 29, 2021 Len, Rowan, and Mike are joined by Dr. Bret Devereaux (@BretDevereaux), Visiting Lecturer in the Department of History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and author of the blog A Collection of Unmitigated Pedantry (https://acoup.blog/). The topic is The State in strategy games. What is a state? What are the advantages and disadvantages of making a game about states, and seeing history through a lens of state action? We talk in particular about how this question applies to Europa Universalis IV.

Europa Universalis IV, Victoria 2, Civilization, King of Dragon Pass

October 22, 2021 Len and Rowan discuss the concept of "games as a service" as it relates to the strategy space. Is it a good thing? Has it always been around and we just called it something different? Can you ever really trust a game studio? Are the post-Kripke seasons of Supernatural actually worth your time? Listen to the episode, then check out the Season Pass over on Patreon.com/3ma

Crusader Kings 2, Europa Universalis 4, Civilization 6, Darkest Dungeon, Battletech, Total War: Three Kingdoms

October 8, 2021 Troy, Len, and Jon sit down to discuss the Civilization 6 New Frontiers DLC pass and where the king of 4X stands in 2021. How does Civ 6 now compare to launch five years ago? How have its modern competitors changed our perception of and relationship with it? Is Sid still the gold standard to beat?

Civilization 6, Humankind, Old World

September 18, 2021 Jon and Ian Boudreau talk Conquest of Elysium 5, a lo-fi fantasy tactics game with Dwarf Fortress-like procedural world generation. Lead armies of moose, visit other planes of existence that are doing their own thing while you're not looking, and try to make it as a Senator in an era with no Senate. Do you like to control archers with your numpad? We know you do!

Conquest of Elysium 5

September 4, 2021 This week Rob is joined by Ranged Touch's Cameron Kunzelman and PCGamesN's Ian Boudreau to discuss an unusual World War II military shooter that feels more like a tactics game: Hell Let Loose. Hear the stirring tale of trying to explain how to drive a manual transmission to someone who has only ever been in his 2006 Honda Civic during the middle of a war. Find out which war movie officer Rob would be. And by the end, probably have a pretty good idea of whether or not this would be your thing or not.

Hell Let Loose

August 20, 2021 Len, Rowan, and Fraser gather to discuss Amplitude's Humankind, the Civ competitor that has been looming large over our release radar for the past couple years. How does it compare to Sid Meier's finest work, and even this studio's previous 4X forays? Will it reignite the spark for those who have lost their love for the turn-based march through history? And aside from all that, is this game even done?

Humankind, Civilization, Old World, Endless Legend

August 13, 2021 Len, Jon, and Mike discuss the indie space "4X without two and a half of the Xes" Slipways. We dig into the benefits of games designed with very strict rules that eventually let you break most of them, as well as having challenging microstrategy games you can finish in about an hour but aren't totally mindless.

Slipways

August 6, 2021 Rob is joined by Nicole Clark and Cameron Kunzelman to discuss two recent deck builders: Klei's Griftlands and Abrakam's Roguebook. What do we like and what brings us dismay about each? How do they stack up against other recent paragons of the genre? Where do these types of games fit into the strategy ecosystem? Is boxed macaroni and cheese really that much better if you drop some unsalted butter in there? That's not relevant to the episode. It's just me, Len, asking a cooking question.

Griftlands, Roguebook, Slay the Spire

August 1, 2021 Rob and Rowan are joined by PCMag's Mike Williams to discuss Dark Deity, a JRPG-inspired indie tactical RPG. What lies beneath the outward riffing on Fire Emblem? What kind of characters will we be bringing to battle, and can we make them kiss? Are numbers even real? Why can Len never come up with a clean way to wrap these episode descriptions up? Is she really just going to let it go out like this?

Dark Deity

July 23, 2021 Troy, Len, and Jon gather by the fire to discuss Old World, the new ancient world 4X from Civilization IV designer and prolific 3ma guest Soren Johnson. Does the tighter timeframe help or hinder it? Is it just ancient Civ? Is that even a bad thing? How many more questions can I come up with? Does this description still look too short? This is probably a good place to stop, right?

Old World

July 13, 2021 Relic has announced Company of Heroes 3! Rob and Len were given a chance to give a bit of the new dynamic campaign map a go. Now they're joined by Relic's David Littman and Matt Philip to discuss what we saw and how this long-awaited sequel is coming together. You can check out the pre-alpha preview yourself by heading over to companyofheroes.com.

Company of Heroes 3, Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault

Three Moves Ahead

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