Thursday, June 9, 2016

Episode 161: Get the Gifford

After several episodes of lame content we decided to finally get some serious history of Advanced Squad Leader stuff to you.  You can't beat this discussion with the wonderful Russ Gifford as he covers GENIE, Play By Email, Avalon Hill, The ASL Ladder, At the Point, SPI Games, Rex M, Don G, AREA Ratings, material in The General and a history of the development of ASL. This one is for the older players to reminisce and learn what was going on behind the scenes, and for the younger players to get their history lesson.

1:00 Intro Chat
3:00 B-Day Wishes
4:25 Russ Gifford Interview
1:14:40 Total Running Time

SPI Games
Russ Gifford Training Videos
Russ on Facebook

Download this episode (right click and save)


  1. What a Gem of a Show!! Mr. Gifford is Great! I could listen to him another hour plus! Love the Stories! Great Job Guys! 2 half Squads strike again!

  2. Back in 1995 (from the pages of the AH General)
    Apparently, the AREA data was completely stolen, primaries and backups.

    "We at Avalon Hill were visited by a tragedy that pales in contrast to
    a terrorist bombing, but nonetheless had devastating effects to those of us who work at the Hill. On Sunday, April 23rd, Avalon Hill was the victim of a burglary in which a thief made off with a computer and an assortment of computer disks and tapes.

    Our thief, probably knowing exactly what it was he was obtaining, had just made off with assorted records of the Avalon Hill Game Company. The mailing list of our customers was his target. Among our losses were the complete records for the AREA rating System

    However, no such "hard" records for the thousands of AREA chits processed over the years exist. Therefore, unable to restore the system to full capacity, we have made the painful decision to shut down the AREA rating service"

    No offsite backup of the data!!
    Real shame...

  3. Wow! Dave had forgotten that event in the history of AH. Good thing we back up all of our show data. Or maybe that is a bad thing.

  4. I only got into ASL two years ago, but shows like this make me really appreciate what eon old cult I have joined!

  5. When I first got into ASL I found Russ Gifford's website. I emailed him for help and he very kindly sent me a CD entitled "Learning ASL Russ Gifford" all the way from the USA to Scotland, free of charge. I've still got the CD on my shelf. Thanks again for this Russ and thanks to the 2 half-squads for finally getting around to interviewing him. Looking forward to listening to this.

  6. One of the reasons I was able to carry on with AREA for ASL was because I had just asked for a complete printout of all ASL AREA users about 10 days before.... And

  7. Russ is a wonderful guest, and wonderful speaker. I used his training videos a lot when I got back in the game a couple of years ago, they are amazingly well done. I believe fairly recently he added a 'long lost' video on AFVs, and it's a must watch for people unclear on some of these concepts. I do hope you can have him on again....what a pleasure.

  8. Great show guys ! Hi Russ thanks for all you have done for the hobby. Can't wait for Episode XYZ "Russ Returns"

  9. I enjoyed the interview with Russ Gifford. Interesting history in the game's development and some of the personalities behind it. Thank You to the 2 Half Squads for documenting such things (e.g. interviews with John Hill, Ian Daglish, etc.) Thank You to Russ Gifford for posting your ASL tutorials online.

    Roll Low,
    Tim Keller