France 1940 is an operational level simulation of the German invasion of France in 1940. Units are corps and divisions, with important regiments and brigades represented. The map covers the German-Franco border, from the parts of the Maginot Line to the English Channel.
The game consists of standard rules, advanced rules incorporating more complexity and realism and an Idiot's Rule, simulating the initial inflexibility of the Allied command. Six German and eleven Allied orders of battle allow players to experiment with game balance as well as explore various "What ifs".
The game comes with detailed designer's notes, giving insight into both game design and the actual campaign.
The first incarnation of the game appeared as an insert in Strategy & Tactics magazine #27(1971), and was subsequently republished by Avalon Hill in 1972.
224 counters (includes the 27 blanks) = Boxed Edition
from "The Avalon Hill General Index and Company History, 1952-1980"
France 1940 (1972) Discontinued 1978
Previously published stock sold in Avalon Hill packaging
Designed by Jim Dunnigan
This game was first published in S&T magazine and later sold to AH with very minor changes. There was little or no input by AH personnel. FRANCE 1940 was a marginal simulation which, by no coincidence, also made it a marginal game. It was designed in such a way as to guarantee German victory time after time when using the historical set-up cards for each nation. However, alternate set-up cards for each nation, based on plausible variations to the historical set-ups, allowed players to alter the game's balance between Germany and the Allies, thus providing for a more balanced (and tense) game at the cost of historical simulation value. Almost immediately after its publication, the game fell out of favor with players, and scored consistently poorly on acceptability ratings.
The main complaint from the simulation aspect is the lumping of nearly all infantry type formations on each side into generic corps counters that were of strength 7 for the Germans, 8 for the British, 6 for the French, and 4 for the Belgian and Dutch. The 7:6 German advantage over the French corps, coupled with the very common CA (counterattack) result on the combat results table almost guaranteed a German win in any stand-up battles on the board. The Allied player must use an ahistorical order of battle to have even a marginally remote chance of victory.
These counters are drawn from the Europa-series game, Fall of France, by Game Designer's Workshop. They replace all units provided in the original France 1940 game, and are set up in their historical locations as listed on the set up cards.
The counters need to be printed and mounted front to back (front side on the left of the sheet, back side on the right).