Battle for Stalingrad

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On the table is the Excalibre Games version of John Hill‘s Battle for Stalingrad.

The game is about the 1942 German offensive to take the city. It has battalion and company sized units, with a ground scale of 600 meters per hex, and each turn representing one week. It uses an impulse system with a variation. The Germans move until the Soviets react by drawing the appropriate chit from a special pool. Then the Soviets go until they stop, or roll a ‘6’ in a combat. Mastering that system is key to success, though there is lots more to the game.

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This version has 600 half-inch counters, one standard sized map, a rule book, and a separate book with articles about the game.

I played the original (1980) SPI version when it first came out, and was glad to be able to acquire one for my collection, even it’s not the original.

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So far, I have set it up, read the rules, and that’s it. There is a one turn scenario that seems a perfect place to start, though the perceived wisdom is that the victory conditions are impossible for the Germans. That will not trouble me too much, as the first aim is to get to grips with the rules. It doesn’t look that complex, but in this version the layout is poor, and things are more opaque than they need to be.

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