Sturm Europa! is a grand strategic simulation, currently in pre-production, that recreates the entire European conflict during the Second World War. Euro-style wooden pieces are used to depict resources, that depending on placement, represent air, land, and sea units. Each player has a privacy screen that creates "fog of war" by keeping resources and units not on the front line hidden. Sturm Europa! will distinguish itself from other games of the genre in these key areas:
Playability: The entire war, Fall 1939 to the bitter end (Spring 1945 or later), can be played in 4-6 hours. No hexes, no counters, and no dice.
Scale: The map board employs area movement over land regions but the low unit density allows players to realize the full impact of mobile warfare and appreciate the daunting size of Mother Russia without slowing game play unnecessarily. A unique front-reserve combat system allows for operational level details like blitzes, assaults, encirclements, feints, static defense, and defense in depth which are normally lost in grand-strategic simulations.
Units: Units are not only rated by movement, but attrition, assault, and blitz strength. Elite units are created by combat experience, events, and tech research - introducing an extra dimension as units are upgraded and downgraded throughout the war, reflecting varying levels of experience, training, leadership, and technology.
Production: Sturm Europa! goes beyond the standard model of linking military production to a GDP estimate. Nations must mobilize to achieve full wartime production but it takes much more to wage war than just massive production lines. Manpower, oil, steel, and even trained pilots are all tracked without ANY bookkeeping through an innovative system of collecting resources as strategy cards are played. Resources are consumed by prolonged offensives so logistics plays just as much a factor as unit strength.
Strategy Cards: Sturm Europa! is a card driven game (i.e. Paths of Glory). Events introduce historical and political events in a realistic fashion while eliminating scripting and "look up" rules. There is a tangible cause-effect relationship to every event and nothing occurs in a seemingly random or ahistorical manner. Players play the cards - the cards don't play the players. Most importantly, the core mechanic of tough gut wrenching decisions which make CDGs so fun is still preserved.
Technology: Players can customize their units to fight the style of war that best suits their strategy. Germany can develop the He 100 long range fighter that greatly improves their chances in the Battle of Britain. The Americans can develop a heavy-medium tank instead of sending Shermans to get chewed up by King Tigers. Tough decisions will have to be made to implement new technologies though. New designs don't just start rolling off the assembly lines without causing a shortage of replacements on the front line while the factories retool and crews retrain...
TENTATIVE COMPONENT LIST:
(2) large 6-panel mounted maps
(156) full color event cards
(450) wooden resource / unit blocks
(160) die-cut counters
(1) 16-page full color rulebook
(3) player screens
(3) player aids
Can be combined with Operation Orient