I’m on my annual Thanksgiving visit with my parents again, and got an early start on playing games with my dad on Friday. After looking over the possibilities a bit, we went with “The Battle of Sumy” from Barbarossa: Kiev to Rostov. He’s played the system before, but it’s been a few years, and almost as long for me. So there was a fair amount of refreshing going on as we worked through the tiny scenario.

My dad took the Axis, and went for a fairly methodical advance despite the short time constraints. He knocked out two of the Soviet cavalry units on the first turn, taking one step loss in the process, but put a couple of nice holes in the line. I shifted partially to the south to cover the hole, and moved the new Guards division into the gap that created. To my surprise, he only attacked one unit, taking out a third cavalry unit for no losses, and opening the southern flank again and taking Lebedin from behind the blocking infantry division.


I shifted the most of the Guards units out to block the southern flank, and prevent an end run to Sumy, but that left the middle open, and he took Shtepovka, taking out an armor unit and the rocket artillery in the process. I struck back in the east, taking Nedrigaylov with armor and an infantry division, and left my dad with the need to either retake it, and take Viry, or take Sumy on the last turn. I also attacked in the west with a couple units that had been trapped in ZOCs. They took losses and retreated, but one step survived, and then moved into Sumy to stiffen that defense.

With some thinking and work, the Germans were able to hit both cities with overwhelming attacks, while blocking the three remaining Soviet units from getting close to them. A fairly decisive Axis win.

It helped that the dice did very well for him the last couple of turns; consistently in the 1-2 range for my dad, and with a couple of high rolls for me, though I got a decent roll when I really needed it. I sent one He111 to the damaged box on the last turn, when it was too late to matter, but otherwise the air war was notable for a lack of anything exciting. The plan is to do “Battle on the Sea of Azov” next.