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Posted on Oct 9, 2006 in Games PR

PR: Minsk ’44, a John Tiller wargame

Armchair General

HPS Simulations is proud to announce the upcoming release of Minsk ‘44, a John Tiller Game

MINSK ’44 – Operation Bagration!

In June of 1944 Adolph Hitler was expecting the coming Soviet summer offensive to be launched against the German front line south of the Pripet Marshes. But instead, Stalin unleashed a massive attack on the very cornerstone of the German Army, Army Group Center, which held a massive salient to the north. This was Operation BAGRATION, an all-out offensive to crush Army Group Center, concentrating Soviet armor, artillery and aircraft. The Red Army quickly broke through the thinly held Germans lines and encircled the fortified cities of Vitebsk, Orsha, Mogilev and Bobruysk. Then the Soviet tank and mechanized formations swept on westwards towards the very heart of the Third Reich. Taken by surprise, the majority of the German Fourth and Ninth Armies were trapped between Minsk and the Berezina River. It was a catastrophic defeat, destroying 28 of 34 German divisions from Army Group Center’s order of battle. So complete was the Soviet victory that five weeks later the Red Army was on the banks of the Vistula River and the borders of East Prussia.


Minsk ’44 features the familiar Panzer Campaigns interface and game scale: one hex represents 1 kilometer and each turn is 2 hours. The map area rises to the challenge of one of the mightiest campaigns of World War Twp, encompassing over 130,000 hexes (on a 364 x 355 hex map). This is slightly larger than the area covered by the Kursk map. The Minsk ’44 map covers from 40 kilometers north of Vitebsk to 100 kilometers south of Bobruysk.
Minsk ’44 Features
There are 42 Scenarios, including the main Soviet assault launched on 23 June in the north and 24 June in the south. Campaign scenario covers the first thirteen days of the offensive and breakthrough until the time the offensive lost momentum. Smaller scenarios cover specific actions and “what if” situations. Many scenarios have a special play-by-email version where conditions such as supply, release of reserves, and victory levels have been altered for play balance.

Order of battle and scenario editors are included which allow players to customize the game. There’s no limit on the scenarios that can be created and the sub-map feature allows the main map to be “chopped up” into the size that best fits the situation.

As is the hallmark of all John Tiller games, Minsk ’44 brings changes to the game engine for the series that enhance the campaign being wargamed. All new features will be rolled out for free to the previous titles in the series. These include:

 – Added partisan unit type with new effects on supply and units moving in the rear.
 – New game effects whereby indirect fire is twice as disruptive to HQ units as normal.
 – Added Quality Fatigue Modifier optional rule.
 – New command effect: detached units (those beyond the command range) can no longer call in artillery or air support.
 – Specific AI improvements have been made in an effort to make the game more enjoyable played against the computer.
 – Scenario Editor: we’ve added the ability to define a Direct A/I Order to assist the AI in attacking over major obstacles such as rivers, thus making the game system more tenacious on the attack.
 – Also added is the ability to highlight a single unit which allows A/I orders to be given to that unit.

Minsk ’44 provides multiple play options including play against the computer AI, Play by e-mail (PBEM), LAN & Internet “live” play, and two-player hotseat. So rev up your T-34 or Tiger tank and be prepared to participate in one of the greatest campaigns of World War Two!

 Minsk ’44 is scheduled for release on 6 October 2006.

Pentium-based 200mhz+ PC with 32 megabytes of RAM
 250 megabytes of hard drive space
 Windows 98/2K/XP operating system.
 DirectX 8.1+ is required and will install if not already present and not superseded. Win95 is not supported.
 ("Windows" is a registered trademark of Microsoft)

Click here for screenshots!