Takashi Ishida
Japan
Abiko
Chiba Prefecture
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Game Title : Deutschland unter Geld

Publisher : Game Journal

Game Designer : Shun-ichi Takanashi

Game Thema : European Theatre of WW2

Game Components
1 game map, 1 counter sheet, rulebook
You must prepare a die for combat resolution.

This is one of the oldest games in Japanese wargame market. The first edition was published on Tactics magazine #7 in 1983. Since in those days Tactics magazine usually didn’t have issue game regularly, this game was published in black-white printed map and counter must be made by DIY.
Instead of these restrictions, Mr. Takanashi designed a real good simulation of the whole European theatre. As the title implies, the game focuses on the economics of the war. This method made the size of the game very persuasive.
In almost all actions of the game needs production points. You must pay the points of course to reorganize units or to call up new units. In addition, you must pay 1 point to move 1 unit; you must pay 2 points to attack with 1 unit. Please don’t be alarmed; you must pay 1 point to make advance after combat even if you win the battle. Again, don’t be alarmed, you must pay 1 point to defend with printed strength. Otherwise, the unit must defend only 1 strength-point.
So, you must change your scheme dramatically to play this game. This is a radically innovative game even in these days.

Going back to the explanation of turn sequence.
In each turn, the Axis player goes first and then the Allied player.
In each player turn, first you must check supply line of all units on the map. Then, you will collect production points from industrial hexes in your home country. For example, the German can get 7 points at start and the United Kingdom can get 4 points at start.
Please be careful that each major nation has independent production points for each nation. The next step is lend-lease. So, if you’d like to move production points between your nations, you can do it in this step. But, it takes 1 turn to move the points. And only half can be handed to the destination. For example, if France would like to lend-lease 4 points to U.K. on turn 1, the U.K. will get only 2 points on turn 2. As you can easily understand, this is a waste of points from the viewpoint of the whole Allied nations. But, this is really effective and almost necessary. I will explain the reason later.
Then, each nation can reorganize or call up its units. Please be careful to the difference between these two actions. Reorganization is an action of reconstructing already prepared or destroyed unit in reorganization box. Calling up is an action of calling up totally new unit from counter mix to its reorganization box. In other words, size of your army is restricted by the number of units in your reorganization box. If you’d like to increase this restriction you must call up new unit. And due to this system, it will take 2 turns if you’d like to have a totally new unit on the map. So, please be careful for long-term strategy to have enough units on the map for the best timing of the game. Also, both actions cost 4 points. So, it will take 8 points if you’d like to have totally new unit on the map. Again, you must have long-term plan to prepare your army.
Then, you can move your units. As I wrote, you must spend 1 point to move 1 unit. This is very unusual procedure. Please do not forget to reduce your marker when you move the unit.
After the movement, you can attack adjacent enemy units with your units by paying 2 points each. The defender has an option that paying 1 point for each unit and use the printed strength or defending with only 1 strength-point. Actually in this game, it is quite often that defender cannot pay the point due to lack of production point. This is a real key of this game.
Combat is resolved on regular odds-type CRT by rolling a die. After the result is applied, the winner can advance after combat with the number of hexes that the loser really retreated. First, defender can cancel its requirement of retreat by paying 1 point for each hex required. But, it must retreat at least 1 hex. Then, the winner can advance after combat by paying 1 point for each unit.
This is the end of player turn.

As you can notice, in this game production points are very important in many ways. Not only for attackers but also defenders. If you’ve no production point, you must defend with only 1 strength point and you cannot cancel your retreat that means the opponent will radically advance and encircle your units.

The game starts in 1939 with German invasion to Poland. Then, the next target is France, as you know in the history.
Invasion to France is very important in this game and have interesting problems, which are unique to this game.
In many similar games, North Africa is not so important and in many cases both players neglect that area. But, in this game, the North Africa is very important.
The reason is once France loses its colonies in Africa, it will decrease its production points by 1 point every turn. Please remind that there are 3 French colonies west of Libya ( Italian colony ), Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco. Due to this fact, earlier Italian invasion into French colonies is a hot topic in this game.
France has 4 production points at start. But, this will be reduced to 3 soon because of German invasion to Lille. So, if France loses all 3 western African colonies, it will get nothing every turn. As I wrote above, without any production points, even the defender have serious problem. Based on these economical situation, France has its lifetime very limited.

So, if France has its lifetime definitely, then what you can do with French production points. Now, you might notice that lend-lease rule is effective for the Allied player even very earlier than the Barbarossa campaign. Though, the transferred amount is small, it is much better than wasting them with France. They can be part of coastal defense along the straits of Dover.

If the careful Allied player could success the survival of U.K. in earlier turns, then the game will move to the East, Soviet. Again, in this game the victory is calculated mainly by economic viewpoint. If the expense of Soviet for reorganization is bigger than its income, the Axis player will control the game. In this case, the Allied player must use lend-lease or carefully check up the possibility of amphibious landing onto the mainland of Europe.

The game ends on turn 23, spring of 1945. Then, both players calculate their victory points. Each major nation has its victory points and other small nations and colonies have 1 point each.

Actually, due to the fact that even the German have only 7 production points at start, this game is very playable. Also, there is a Russian Campaign scenario.
Instead of its size and playability, players must have long-term plan and be careful for every action. I think this is a real classic game.
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Чебурашка, ты настоящий друг!
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The game sounds fascinating and perhaps in need of a reprint. Is there an English-language version?

By the way, how long does a game normally take?
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Moritz Eggert
Germany
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The title of the game actually makes no sense in German at all - strange! Thanks for reporting on this oddity from the past
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Чебурашка, ты настоящий друг!
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Eggo wrote:
The title of the game actually makes no sense in German at all - strange!


I love its Deutsch als Fremdsprache kookiness!
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Takashi Ishida
Japan
Abiko
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Salo sila wrote:
The game sounds fascinating and perhaps in need of a reprint. Is there an English-language version?

By the way, how long does a game normally take?


This game is first published on Tactics and reprinted on Game Journal.
Also, the designer have retried this theme again in World War 2 and then the Rise and Fall of the third Reich.

So, I don't think this game could be reprinted near future in Japan.

I have no idea about English version.
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meenki boo
United States
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Deutschland unter Geld » Forums » Reviews
Re: the whole European theatre WW2 game from the viewpoint of economics
Want to play a WWII European theatre wargame that requires production points to move units? Unconditional Surrender! World War 2 in Europe
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