In our gaming of the Walk Thru WWII we have played a LOT of titles and a been exposed to lot of history.
We started off with the fighting around Case White or the Invasion of Poland, with the classic GDW title on the matter. Winter War from SPI came next.
By late in 1940, every one was feeling punchy. Even Mussolini.
His pre emptive invasion of Greece from Albania threw a spanner in the works for every one. The smaller of the two GDW titles Marita Merkur, while flawed gave us an excellent feel for the challenges face by both sides in this politically charged and operationally challenging situation.
By this time it was appropriate to wind back the clock a little and move South to Africa. Here we kicked off a campaign in September 1940, finished early and restarted a 2nd campaign game slated around the British offensive named Operation Compass. All the campaigns were played using DAK2, which is my favorite title so far in the OCS series.
1941 so far has been a challenge due mainly to the addition of a new front. Aspects of DAK2 or the Operations in Afrika carry thru here and are completed (but we experienced some serious alt history with a massive German win due to poor Commonwealth play), however conflict still raged in Greece and Marita Merkur was replayed after a table swipe by my cleaning lady…
Thus we arrive at the Eastern Front. Here given the large number of titles I happen to own I wanted to dig a bit deeper and play a small handful of titles at various scales.
No exploration of WWII on the Eastern Front however would be complete without paying homage to The Russian Campaign by Jedko Games. That copy was lost copy decades ago but was replaced about 8 years ago with L2’s 4th edition. So L2 was played this first.
Using this as a baseline off we go to then play Hitler Turns East
which while at a higher scale (Army level), brought some new thinking and mechanics to the table. A surprise fortuitous trade in January then pushed Command Magazine’s first edition Blitzkrieg 1941 off the play slot and we added The Dark Valley to our play list to explore Operation Barbarossa or events running thru January 1942.
The Dark Valley.
Those plays are now done. Expect to see a minor 3 way comparison of the games in the near future, most likely in video format.
At another more operational scale Case Blue and Guderians Blitzkrieg II beckoned. If not now, then when?
So all 11 maps of Operation Typhoon is in full swing, with 7 turns in the bag we are playing the whole thing solo thru to about June 1942 (if it lasts). This will be a significant effort that will slow down other areas of play, but should be well worth it. See here for the current status as at 15th of October 1941 .
It is around this time that China and Japan begin assessing hostilities. December 9th the Chinese declare war on Japan. Of course the tragedy of Pearl Harbor is just days old and the US enters the war shortly after the 7th of December. The War of the Suns title would be ideal here. However wariness abounds of investing more time in the system due to errata and play sequence errors that somehow got thru a game that has been on p500 for 3 lifetimes.
So, the Pacific region begs attention, and will be addressed with some higher level strategic titles: Empire of the Sun, Fire in the Sky and perhaps Asia Engulfed.
Those games would cover aspect of the war at a macro level and the intention is to play them Side by Side and compare, once we have a respectable chunk of the Eastern Front finished.
The Pacific theatre provides some challenges for game play. With several large sea battles that are pivotal, and an exhaustive island hopping campaign finding the right titles to capture the ebb and flow of the Pacific is a challenge. Certainly Coral Sea and C.V (Midway) and possibly Flattop could be played however the latter are fairly tactical in nature.
Please share your ideas on topics for Pacific theatre adventures. With one play of Burma from the OCS under wraps it would not be a game that has any appeal for a replay. So the entire early/mid late Burma area is open to suggestions too.
Once the turn clock rolls over to 1942 on Case Blue we can begin looking at titles to play WWII wide that capture the major Operations. Many of those will be Eastern Front focused.
1942 sets itself up to be once where in Asia Japan steam rolls through countries and nothing stands in its way culminating in the fall of Singapore in February.
Several sea engagements in late February namely the Battle of the Java Sea and skirmishes involving the USS Enterprise and Langley occur and MacArthur flees the Philippines.
At this point in June of 1942 the Battle of Midway is a major operation well worth covering.
Meanwhile in Europe, Rommel begins his counter offensive in January, the Case Blue,Crimean offensive starts in May and the British move to the offensive with massive air raids on Cologne.
So lots to cover and plenty gaming to go.