Before we get into this series of Event Card Spoilers I want to say this. Werwolf: Insurgency in Occupied Germany, 1945-1948 is not a glorification of Nazism. Nor is it an attempt to change the narrative, although this game is an alternate reality look at the occupation of Germany by the Allies immediately following the fall of Berlin and the resistance from various groups to that occupation. This game will not be for everyone and may offend some with its portrayal of the events and participants in this struggle. I would say give it a chance to develop over the next year or so as the game has just been placed on pre-order with Legion Wargames. I have long been enthralled with the COIN Series from GMT Games for its attempt to tell the less than squeaky clean side of some of the most infamous struggles in history. This game is not an official part of that series but is COIN Series inspired.
I have seen lots of information put out by the design team of Clint Warren-Davey and Ben Fiene and it appears that these two have done their homework and extrapolated some theories that may or may not have been totally 100% accurate but are based in some semblance of plans or partial historical information. I think that it is good to explore history in these type of games.
With all of that being said, we were contacted by our good friend Randy Lein from Legion Wargames a few months ago about this project and asked if we would be interested in doing some coverage through an interview and possibly some other mediums, such as our Event Card Spoilers format that we have used in other games, and we were immediately intrigued by the concept and the fact that the game uses some of the elements of one of our favorite series. I have been in communication with one of the designers Clint Warren-Davey since that time and he has shared lots of information with me, including the rules and some of their background work on this one, and I wanted to make sure we gave it some light to give you a chance to understand what the game is so that you can make an informed decision about whether you plan to order this one or not. Clint has been great to work with and has agreed to write a series of short articles on the Event Cards and their basis in history as well as how they are used in the game.
If you are interested in ordering Werwolf: Insurgency in Occupied Germany, 1945-1948, you can pre-order a copy for $72.00 from the Legion Wargames website at the following link: https://www.legionwargames.com/legion_WER.html
#79 Group Pliev
For this card reveal, I’m sticking with the equestrian theme from last times ‘Operation Cowboy.’ Growing up in Australia, I’d always been told that the Australian Light Horse had led the last successful cavalry charge in history. While it’s easy to see that the claim is complete tosh (think about the Russo-Polish War), most nations have a series of myths they tell themselves. Cavalry in modern war is seen as something which was severely outdated in 1914, when squadrons of French Cuirassiers in gleaming breastplates were gunned down. Again in 1939, the apocryphal story of gallant Polish uhlans being massacred by the might of German panzers is another ‘last cavalry charge’ story. Surely, by the start of World War II cavalry had had its day in the sun?
It’s strange to think, but cavalry played a valuable role throughout the Second World War on the Eastern Front. From early events like Lev Dovotor’s raid against Army Group Centre, to the pinnacle of combined cavalry-mechanized warfare practiced by the Soviet General Issa Pliev. To anyone who has studied Soviet Cold War doctrine (and who may be perplexed – and gladdened – by the failure of the Russians in Ukraine to show any operational understanding, let alone expertise), the concept of the Operational Maneuver Group is very familiar. Inspired by the use of cavalry in the US Civil War, Pliev pioneered the use of combined armor and cavalry operations to seize the initiative on the operational level. Once a breach in the German lines was achieved by infantry and artillery, Pliev’s group of cavalry supported by medium armor would speed into the gap. By exploiting the breakthrough into the enemy rear areas, Pliev could sew chaos and destruction, taking out logistical and command locations. In this type of war, cavalry and mechanized troops proved very well suited as they could move fast through rough terrain. The flip side was if cut off and surrounded, their lack of logistical support meant that cavalry-mechanized groups could quickly be in danger of annihilation.
Representations of conventional warfare in Werwolf is necessarily abstracted, though with this card I think we’ve managed to represent the nature of Pliev’s approach to war. The ‘Cavalry-Mechanized Group’ option enables the Soviets to launch a swift and devastating raid into Werwolf or Edelweiss territory, deploying a light force of troops and one HE, but removing three guerrillas and potentially seizing control of a key location. For the insurgents, ‘Surrounded and Cut Off’ means the overextended Soviet forces will lose not only two troops, but also take a hit to their resources.
If you missed the previous entries in the series, you can catch up on the posts to date by following the below links:
There will be more card spoilers to come in the near future. In the meantime, if you are interested we recently posted an interview with the designers and you can read that at the following link: https://theplayersaid.com/2022/06/27/interview-with-clint-warren-davey-and-ben-fiene-designers-of-werwolf-insurgency-in-occupied-germany-1945-1948-from-legion-wargames/