Many players do get a kick out of beating others with their naked minds alone, which is at least better than naked fists. Chess players are particularly obnoxious in this regard. But the real interest is in struggling toward a goal.
Quotes by Greg Costikyan
Rules complexity was not necessarily matched by strategic complexity; the only real choice for the German player in a strategic World War II game, after all, is “Britain first” or “Russia first”. The attraction of the wargame lies in mastering a complex system; and in the difficult, complicated tactical decisions to be made—exactly how to position your counters to deliver an attack of maximal effectiveness.