Developed on wooden blocks and cubes system, over an astonishing 124x87cm full laminated multicolor map-board, there's not any paper component, but the Manual.
All the over 900 wooden/plastic components/stickers have been created by the best Italian artisinal industry and painted "A buratto", a technique usually adopted for painting car parts and accessories.
Early in the morning of 10 May 1940, under the Codeword Danzic, Fallschirmjäger from the 7th Flieger Division and 22nd Luftlande executed surprise landings at Den Haag, on the road to Rotterdam and against the Fortress of Eben Emael in order to facilitate German Army Group B's feint advance in Belgium, while the main attack was conducted by stronger Army Group A, led by 7 panzer divisions from the Ardennes, through a terrain believed uncrossable to armor units.
France and UK reacted immediately, activating the Dyle-Breda Plan, committing their best forces directly into the trap.
Then in June the evacuation of Dunkirk was a partial success, but the battle for France was over with an astonishing German Victory.
Four years must last before the Western Allies would come back to the continent and thus for finally defeat Germany.
BLOCKS IN THE WEST (BITW) is a game of World War II conflict simulation at the operational level. It recalls the most decisive battles fought on the Western Front from the battle for France in Spring 1940 until the dramatic end in Berlin in spring 1945.
Although based on historical events and battles, the players in command of the two factions can modify the evolution of World War II on the Western Front.
The game is recommended for two, three or four players: one/two control the Western Allies and the other one/two control Germany and Italy. The game is emminently suitable for solitary play: the single player just controls both sides. In this case, a play with Fog of War is mandatory.
The rules are divided into three major sections which can be learned one at a time.
The first section is the BASIC GAME RULES which introduces the basic concepts and enables players to start playing the game without too many rules to remember.
Then the ADVANCED GAME RULES provide more specific and detailed rules for an enhanced realism, such as the use of Fuel and the Advanced Production System.
Finally, for those players who want to get the best out of the game, OPTIONAL RULES can be added as desired.
The Optional Rules include Technology Research, Strategic warfare over German factories and U-Boot Campaign in the Atlantic Ocean, Amphibious Invasions, Parachute Assaults…
A hexagon is approximately 43 miles (72 Km) across.
A game turn is 1 month long.
A full strength counter represents a major military formation (normally a corps) of ca. 30,000 men, 300 Tanks or 300 planes – depending on the unit type, equipment, nationality, etc.
FOG OF WAR
The game can be played with the Fog of War on (wooden blocks are placed on the map in such a way the opponent player can not see them) OR with Fog of War OFF (all units are visible).
Language: English, German, French, Spanish and Italian
Genre: Operational, Strategic
Complexity: Basic to Advanced, depending on which rules are used and on Scenario Lenght
Period: World War II
With over 300 unit counters and 300 different resource points of various colors, players can enjoy hours of fun by playing one of the 2 Campaign (maybe combined with BITE) or by playing one of the other scenarios. Each scenario has a different length (from 1 to 10 turns) and a difficulty level, rated in brackets from 1 (Very Easy) to 10 (Very Hard):
• SBW1: La Gotica - April 1945
April 1945 (1)
• SBW2: Ardennes ’44 – The Bulge
December 1944 – January 1945 (4)
• SBW3: Fall Gelb – France 1940
May – June 1940 (5)
Long scenarios and Campaign:
• SBW4: Operation Husky – Sicily 1943 July – September 1943(4)
• SBW5: The Battle of England
July – October 1940 (4)
• SBW6: Victory in the West
May – October 1940 (7)
• SBW7: The last days of Mussolini
July – November 1943 (6)
• SBW8: Overlord – Normandie ‘44
June 1944 – July 1944 (6)
• SBW9: Short Downfal
June – November 1944 (7)
• SBW10: Downfall
June 1944 – May 1945 (9)
Every scenario has different victory conditions and length, with a different playing time of 1 hour for the short scenarios and 4+ hours for the long scenarios.
There is also 1 Campaign, playable in combination with BITE:
• SBEW2: DOWFALL
The Campaign 1944 – 45 (10)
COMPONENTS for the Standard Boxed Edition (SE)
• N° 2 87x62 cm mapboards (laminated)
• N° 1 rules manual
• N° 1 Expansion Map
• N° 1 Scenario Journal Setup Charts
• N° 2 Player AID
• N° 40 wooden light blue blocks (France)
• N° 100 wooden black blocks (Germany)
• N° 30 wooden light green blocks (Italy)
• N° 1 wooden tan block (Turn Tracker)
• N° 45 wooden dark green blocks (US)
• N° 45 wooden blue blocks (UK)
• N° 30 wooden orange blocks (Axis Forts
• N° 20 wooden brown blocks (Minors)
• N° 45 wooden blue blocks (UK)
• N° 2 wooden orange plates (Mulberries)
• N° 318 PVC stickers (laminated) NATO EDITION
2 stickers for the Turn Tracker Token
• N° 60 wooden yellow cubes
(General Production Points)
• N° 20 wooden red cubes *
(Armor Production Points)
• N° 20 wooden blue cubes *
(Air Production Points)
• N° 10 wooden white cubes *
(Navy Production Points)
• N° 20 plastic black cylinders *
(Oil Production Points)
• N° 10 plastic white cylinders
• N° 10 wooden blue discs* (Partisans)
• N° 20 plastic red factories *
• N° 20 plastic blue factories *
• N° 5 plastic black factories *
• N° 5 plastic white factories *
• N° 7 dice