Blocks in the East

Blocks in the East: The Russian Campaign 1941-45


In stock

Product Description

ATTENTION: The version sold here is the English first edition that comes in a cylinder package; NOT the boxed edition.

Publishers website here.

BLOCKS IN THE EAST (BITE) is a game of World War II conflict simulation at the strategic level. It recalls the most decisive battles fought on the Eastern Front from the beginning of the invasion in summer 1941 until the dramatic end in Berlin in spring 1945. Although based on historical events and battles, the players in command of the two factions can modify the evolution of World War II on the Eastern Front.

The game was created by the Italian wargamer Emanuele Santandrea and illustrated by Silvia Grazioli, Riccardo Gatti, and Emanuele Santandrea himself. Developed on wooden blocks and cubes system, with a full laminated multicolor 125×87 cm map board, there’s not any paper component. All the over 600 wooden/plastic components have been created by the best Italian artisinal industry and painted “A buratto”, a technique usually adopted for painting car parts and accessories.
The game is recommended for two or four players: one/two control the Soviet Red Army and the other one/two control Germany and the other Axis powers. In a threesome, one player controls one faction while the other two players control the other faction. The game is furthermore suitable for solitary play: the single player just controls both sides. In this case, a play with Fog of War is suggested.

Historical Background

On 22 June 1941, under the codeword Dortmund, the German Wehrmacht and other Axis powers started the invasion of the Soviet Union (“Operation Barbarossa”) and thereby the biggest struggle in military history.

Over 150 divisions – ca. 3,6 million troops – of the Axis invaded the USSR along a front of 2,900 km. In addition to these troops, Barbarossa involved 600,000 motor vehicles, 750,000 horses, 3350 tanks, 7300 guns, and nearly 2000 planes – the largest invasion in the history of warfare.

Rules Introduction

The rules are divided into three major sections which can be learned one at a time:

– BASIC GAME RULES: The first section introduces the basic concepts of BITE and enables players to start playing the game without too many rules to remember. The shorter scenarios are especially developed for this rules and to learn the mechanics of the game.
– ADVANCED GAME RULES: The next section provides more specific and detailed rules for an enhanced realism, such as Fuel Usage and the Advanced Production. The longer scenarios should be played with this rules.
– OPTIONAL RULES: Finally, for those players who want to get the best out of the game, these additional rules can be added as desired (normally to the AR). They include Technology Research, Strategic Warfare with bombers and submarines, Partisans, Amphibious Landings, Airborne Assaults, Special Attack Actions, etc.

Game Language: English
Manual Languages (incl. downloadable contents): English, German, Italian, French
Genre: Operational, Strategic
Turns: Turn-Based
Complexity: Basic to Advanced, depending on which rules are used
Period: World War II (Eastfront)

A hexagon is approximately 53 miles (70 km) across.
A game turn is 1 month long.
A full strength counter represents a major military formation (normally a corps) of ca. 30,000 men, 300 Tanks, or 300 planes – depending on the unit type, equipment, nationality, etc.

With over 300 unit counters and 300 different resource points of various colors, players can enjoy hours of fun by playing the full Codeword Dortmund campaign from 1941 to 1945 or by playing one of the other scenarios. Each scenario has a different difficulty level, rated in brackets from 1 (Very Easy) to 10 (Very Hard):

Short Scenarios:
– Road to Leningrad
June – September 1941 (1)
– Road to Moscow
June – September 1941 (2)
– Road to Rostov
June – November 1941 (3)
– Short-Barbarossa
June – August 1941 (4)

Long Scenarios and Campaign:
– Operation Barbarossa
June – November 1941 (8)
– Case Blue: The Drive to Baku
June – November 1942 (7)
– Operation Citadel: Battle of Kursk
June – November 1943 (6)
– Operation Bagration
June 1944 – June 1945 (6)
– Codeword Dortmund: The Russian Campaign
June 1941 – June 1945 (10)

Every scenario has different victory conditions and length, with a different playing time of 2 to 3 hours for the short scenarios and 4+ hours for the long scenarios.