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Blocks in the East» Forums » General

Subject: Is this game right for me? rss

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Danger Mouse
United Kingdom
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Hi, I am looking for an East Front game. Since they are all quite pricey, I can only really just buy one. I have asked about this on the General Wargame Forum. Many there say about EastFront 2, but there is a bit of a problem with that as I only really have about 3 hours, 4 hours at a push, to play a game. I do not like carrying games over to the following week, so it really needs to play under 4 hours.

While I had already seen Moscow 41 and considered that, I did not realize that Block in the East existed.

I like the idea of Moscow 41, and I especially like the long thin sticks for defensive lines, but was a little worried that the Germans only really had one strategy in that game. Sadly, only 1 person commented in my General Wargame thread explaining the Germans had a few strategies in that game.

However, what I would like to know about here is what everyone thinks about Blocks In The East in relation to my requirements?

Please compare to East Front 2 (and other block games like Moscow 41 and Holdfast Russia).

What I want:

*A game that really gives the feel of East Front strategies, ie encircling, pockets, cutting supply trumping direct combat.

*A game that plays sub 4 hours. A real game, not a learning game. I do not mind scenarios, eg Barbarossa in Blocks In The East, rather than the full eastern campaign. I just want a game that is not a learning game, but a real fully fledged game, even if it is a section of the war.

[Please give me an idea of the playing times for the scenarios in Blocks in The East]

*A game that gives a ton of choices. For example, I really like Julius C and Waterloo from Columbia. The second I finish one game I am already thinking how I would play the next game a little differently, even when I win. I like a game that gives a load of choices allowing the player to be inventive. I typically play against my brother, and he is just like me on the creativity front. Our favourite playing experiences are the games where we are always on our toes thinking what is he up to? Bluff and the resulting panic make very memorable playing experiences.

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Filip Labarque
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The first 4 BITE scenarios are definately playable in under 4 hours, of which the short Barbarossa scenario is the most fun and complete one. Scenarios 5-7 will still be doable around 4-6 hours, but I would leave out the optional rules in that case.
Tons of fun can still be had with the short barbarossa scenario and the basic rules. It won't feel like an incomplete game, but you might want to progress towards the advanced rules later on to infuse your games with more realism.

I can highly recommend BITE. Some years ago I was in your position, also looking for an East Front game and deciding between BITE and EF2. What convinced to select BITE (first, I got all EF games later) was the added level of granularity. BITE has artillery and airforce units. This immersed me more into the game.

When comparing BITE and EF2, I can tell you that the production values of BITE far exceed the ones from EF2. The map is higher quality, the stickers are PVC instead of paper,...

Check out my review to know more: Blocks in the East Second Edition Review
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Kevin Duke
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And, for what it's worth, I think the publisher is somewhere under 40 copies left of Blocks in the East.

While he will probably reprint it, it certainly won't be immediate.

This already being 2nd edition, I would not think a 3rd printing will be "better," since typos and things were already fixed for 2nd edition.

So if you want it, grab one soon.
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Jim O'Neill (Established 1949)
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jaa17 wrote:
...What I want:

You want to buy Blocks in the East...

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Danger Mouse
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Thanks for the responses. I am gravitating towards this one. A few more Qs.

oneilljgf wrote:
jaa17 wrote:
...What I want:

You want to buy Blocks in the East...



Would you say Blocks in the East is better for me than Moscow 41?

Flupperdeflup wrote:
...Some years ago I was in your position, also looking for an East Front game and deciding between BITE and EF2. What convinced to select BITE (first, I got all EF games later) was the added level of granularity.


Why did you ultimately feel the need to get EF2? Did you feel something was lacking in BITE, or did you want to get down to the 2 week turn rate? (BTW - nice review.)

kduke wrote:
So if you want it, grab one soon.


I think you are right about speed. What with Brexit, sourcing from Italy might push up the price if I leave things too long.

A general Q to everyone: I have been looking at the videos here on BBG. In particular one guy has put up the Case Blue scenario. There seems to be a massive gap in the Russian line. Is that normal for East Front tactics? Is this because this is a low block count in this game? The guy seems unperturbed by this massive hole. I am guessing it must be distance for the Germans to travel that is the Russian defence in that case? Or am I completely misreading East Front tactics? If this was my first BITE game and that happened to me as the Russian player, I would be in deep panic mode by now.
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Filip Labarque
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Comparing BITE vs Moscow, BITE is still my favorite. Mostly because I prefer hexes vs areas, but this is more a personal preference. Moscow is a bit more acessible, BITE will give you more tactcal choices.

Why did I get EF2? Because I wanted to see what the fuss was about and I waz able to get it for an interesting price. I played EF2, but I prefer BITE for being a more streamlined game.

Concerning gaps in the line. Yes, it's usually a bad idea.
But sometimes choices must be made, you never have the forces to be strong in every position. And if you know the enemy can't reach the gap, then you're fine.
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Kev.
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Flupperdeflup wrote:
Comparing BITE vs Moscow, BITE is still my favorite. Mostly because I prefer hexes vs areas, but this is more a personal preference. Moscow is a bit more acessible, BITE will give you more tactcal choices.

Why did I get EF2? Because I wanted to see what the fuss was about and I waz able to get it for an interesting price. I played EF2, but I prefer BITE for being a more streamlined game.

Concerning gaps in the line. Yes, it's usually a bad idea.
But sometimes choices must be made, you never have the forces to be strong in every position. And if you know the enemy can't reach the gap, then you're fine.

Adding some of the optional card for Early Late War with BITE also means you have much deeper play and much more what if scenarios.
EF2 is fine, but incredibly ahistorical. Clump AGN/AGC/AGS HQ's together and be in Moscow tomorrow!

I have a copy of BITE and the expansion cards I could sell you ( I have two copies) I might have the original goretex map expansion map lying around somewhere too. PM if you want to talk price. Are you in USA or EU?
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Willem Boersma
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I would also recommend no retreat; the Russian front.
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paul cleveland
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oneilljgf wrote:
jaa17 wrote:
...What I want:

You want to buy Blocks in the East...



And BITW. Since you've come this far one more...BIA. I'm all in lads with the Christmas sale and the New Year looks like it's going to Hell or bust.
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