Today's game was a random encounter using the IABSM rules between the Germans, preparing to withdraw, against advancing Soviets.

Each side's objectives are clear. The Germans must prevent the Russians from taking the town they are defending. The Soviets must clear the Germans from the tabletop.

We played the game on a table 180x240cm (6ft x 8ft) with a lot of terrain, making sure that each side had plenty of cover to fight from.

But let's see the game from the eyes of a camera mans from the time: in black and white.

The two sides begin the game hidden from their opponents under Blinds, separated by the natural obstacle of the river.

As units are spotted, between Russian rage and the aggressiveness of the Germans, the first casualties are not long in coming.

But the Germans have all the axis of advance towards the town well covered.

But the T-34s manage to find a narrow defile through which they advance unseen.

Other Soviet tanks do not bother to try to conceal themselves and fall victim to the precision shooting of the Germans.

But the Russians are no slouches at shooting either, and hit back hard.

But as soon as their Blinds card is drawn, more German tanks appear from where they've been hiding, and hurt the Soviets badly.

It's not just the Soviet tanks that are causing the Germans problems, the Russian anti-tank guns are working hard as well.

The industrial sector of the tow, apparently less well defended, falls to the Soviet infantry.

Allowing their self-propelled artillery forward into good positions from which to threaten the enemy.

The game had to end at this point due to running out of time. We declared the result a draw: yes, by concentrating their fire, the Germans had slowed the Soviet advance enough to be able to withdraw from the town; but the Soviets had already managed to take part of the town before this happened.

But the main aim of the game was to have fun with friends, and that we managed.

Burt (with almost all pics from VIIII Legion)