The Europa series from Frank Chadwick was one of the most ambitious wargaming projects ever. It started with “playable monster” operational games covering the eastern front, beginning with Drang Nach Osten (Fire in the East), then moved around the map with new modules covering every corner of WW2 in Europe.
Here is the whole family’s page on BGG, where an earlier version of these changes was posted –
Division and regiment units, hex and counter, elaborate supporting “air” game rules, kept simple and playable – Europa had a lot to recommend it in its day. It did struggle with scale, but that was kind of the point – Europa players wanted to see and manage every important attack on a two turns a month time scale, 16 miles to a hex level, for huge fronts splashed over 5 maps at a time. It was the ultimate “convention game”, played for a week as a stretch or more, often by teams of player rather than single opponents. Some of the later modules on theaters smaller than the eastern front got down to fewer maps and lower counter counts, and those are fine in their way, but not the point of the system.
But these days the system feels dated, in mechanics and in combat design. It tries to pack all the fighting in a 2 week period into one combat phase, and then make up for it by having that CRT be quite attacker friendly if they can get to the upper odds columns. And its supply system phasing means units feel debilitating effects before they move for their own turn, if the enemy’s movement, combat, and exploitation has put them out of supply. So the premium is on stacking high and ganging up, then isolating as many enemies as possible to keep them from reacting effectively.
Notably, its early “Lanchester” style CRT, while quite accurate and well tuned on the middling 3-2, 2-1, 3-1 and 4-1 columns most easily reached, becomes almost absurdly attacker friendly past that point, with attacker expected losses plummeting at 5-1 and disappearing entirely at 6-1 and up. This means as long as a strong spearhead only fights “unfair” it can do so forever, without any wear to its cutting edge.
The system tried to keep that in check somewhat by making loss inflicting efficiency pretty insensitive to odds column reached – put 100 attack factors alongside the enemy and they will take out 10-12 enemy defense factors per turn however they are used. That was the approach The Russian Campaign had used, tuned to the reinforcement and replacement schedule, to get the east front attrition aspects broadly right. But it does mean very little wear on careful attackers with no loss in their killing ability, really, and that’s not realistic. The system had play balance issues as a result, pro German in the early east front war compared to history.
I’ve reworked the combat system of this one, and made a few changes to the phasing and especially the overrun rules that go with those changes. The role of air and artillery is also moved to something more like SCS or OCS, though without full “DG” results, which would be inappropriate at this time scale. Instead barrages earn +1 DRMs on attacks when successful, and occasionally cause a step loss – but they are separated from combat factor counting, like those later MMP systems.
Overruns were possible in the original only as 10-1 auto eliminations, and those are replaced with SCS/OCS style ordinary attacks at any odds by one moving stack during the movement or exploitation phases. This makes a big difference to operational tempo and allows more realistic planning of operations to achieve breakthrough, prevents game specific delaying tactics the original made possible, and the like. But on the new CRT, with attacker loss chances continuing even to the top columns, driving op tempo high will cause wear on the spearheads doing it, roughly proportional to the defense strength they run through. I still do allow some increased protection / decreased wear if one reaches the highest columns, as too essential to the game system to remove completely, but it is toned down a lot and doesn’t go on like a light switch past 4-1.
Also, while I like the Europa air system, I find the level of detail excessive and the number of units likewise, especially for the full east front titles. My solution is to consolidate air units into wings – 3 for 1 reduction in unit numbers – while increasing the bombardment rating of the resulting larger units. This effectively enforces use of air in larger effective increments, while dramatically reducing the amount of player micromanagement needed to implement the air war component of these games.
With that explanation, here are the rule changes –
New armor advantage procedure
attackers total their armor only strength, using 100% of their full armor type units and 50% of their limited rated units.
defenders do the same, and get to use AT rated units as well as armor if the attackers have any armor at all.
Calculate the “armor only odds” from those two strengths rounding normally. Less than 1-1, defender armor advantage and -1 DRM to the combat. 3-1 or greater, attacker armor advantage and +1 DRM to the combat. That’s it.
The 2D6 bombardment table is used in place of the bombing table from the original. Air bombing and ground artillery fire both use the table but each category attacks separately, the air units in the air phase, attacking artillery units in the combat phase before the specific combat is rolled. Artillery units use their attack factor rating for this; they do not contributed their attack factor to the combat strength of the attack.
The highest value, in-supply defending artillery unit in the hex contributes its full defense strength to the hex’s defense, like any other unit. No other units need be present; ignore the original rule counting non-artillery REs. Any in-supply artillery unit also provides all units in the hex with Support. All other artillery units contribute only 1 defense strength to the combat. Defensive artillery never uses the bombardment table, it just adds to defense strength according to this rule.
For all bombing and artillery support resolutions, roll 2D6 and consult this table.
Bombardment table shifts –
If there is less than 3 REs equivalent in the target hex, bombardments shift one column left; if there are more than 6 REs, shift one column right. Fortified hexes, mountain terrain, and major cities also shift one left (any of those, not cumulative).
Night attacks, AS vs ships get +1 or -1 DRM as on the original bombing table. Higher bombardment ratings for dive bombers are implemented as increased ground attack ratings for dive bomber units.
Results on the table are 1s or 2s. These are the number of hits vs facilities just like H results on the original table, though 2 are now sometimes possible in the same attack.
For ground support and artillery vs units, any “1” result earns +1 DRM on the subsequent combat. Any “2” result does that and also reduces 1 division unit, or if none are present, eliminates 1 non-divisional unit. The firing player chooses but must choose a “soft” unit (non armored) if possible; he may choose armor to have a full division to reduce or if no other unit types are present.
You may never earn more than a single +1 DRM for bombardment support, air and artillery combined. You could fire afterward trying for a “2” result but no additional “1” results help. Note that since all firing units are totaled, the maximum number of times a given hex could be bombarded in a game turn is 2, once by air in the air phase, and once by adjacent attacking artillery in the combat phase.
New air wing bombardment ratings –
Ju-87B or D – 15-3
Ju-88 or He-111 – 6-15
Do-17 – 6-10
Me-110 – 10-6
Bf-109E or F – 3-0
The new combat procedure is to first determine if any DRM is earned for fire support using the barrage table above, then calculate the armor only odds ratio to determine whether either side earns an armor DRM, terrain permitting. Then calculate the odds for the combat as in original Europa, consult the proper column (above 7-1 uses 7-1, below 1-4 is attacker eliminated) and roll 2D6, applying any DRMs. Adjusted rolls below “2” are “2” and above “12” are “12”.
The main CRT now looks like this –
Terrain effects on combat
All the terrain types that confer -1 DRMs on the original TEC are instead just +1 defense strength (woods, rough e.g.). All the terrain types that prevent AEC on the original ignore armor odds. All terrain types that have -2 on the original TEC add +2 to defense strength and in addition give a single left column shift. All water barrier hexsides that reduce attack strength on the original TEC halve armor and mechanized AFs across; major rivers halve all AFs attacking across instead. Artillery factors only attack as bombardment support, but bombardment support cannot be earned against swamp hexes.
All loses are “calibrated” to 50% of the weaker side in SPs, with the “1” results that amount, the “2” results twice that amount (which will normally be weaker side “elimination” – reduction of all divisions to cadres and non divisions removed).
For SP removal, the weaker side is determined from the combat odds column used. Use the defender’s strength for all attacks at 1-1 and upward, and the attacker’s strength for all attacks at 1-2 and below.
Then use printed combat strength reduced by out of supply or lack of support effects, and increased by fortified hexes or major city hex defenders. All other adjustments to attack or defense strength have no impact on loss amount determination. So e.g. if an attack across a river goes in at 1-2, the attacker’s printed SP strength would be used to determine loss amounts.
Combat loss allocations are chosen by the suffering side, but must fulfill the whole amount of the required loss or exceed it, and may be required to allocate losses to armored units first in some cases.
Armor loss requirement – if the attacker has any armor and the defender (1) had any armor or AT, or (2) is in a fortified hex, or (3) is in a major city hex, then the first attacking unit reduced must be an armor capable unit (including 50% contribution types). If the defender has any armor, and the terrain allowed a possible armor shift, and the attacker has any armor, then the first defending unit reduced must be an armor unit. If these conditions are not fulfilled, armor losses are not required, and the losing player may fulfill their losses as they see fit.
Full strength division reductions – whenever a full strength division is reduced to a cadre, doing so fulfills as a loss requirement the full value of the division, not just the change in its strength. All one step units eliminated fulfill their listed strength, using attack factor for attackers and defense factor for defenders in that combat.
Replacements for excess removals – (RE replacement series games) If to fulfill their loss requirement, any player reduces total strength by more than their combat loss requirement and their units are in supply, divide the excess by 3 and round fractions down. That is the number of REs they may add to their replacement pool for removing the excess. If the excess was taken from armor type units including 50% capable rated, the earned replacement REs may be armor replacements.
Note that Western Desert and similar modules use replacements points in REs, while Fire in the East / Scorched Earth use replacement points in factors. The two systems have slight differences for replacement purposes. For the games that count specific factors, every time you overfulfill loss requirements, subtract 1 from the excess factors removed in that combat and add them to that nation’s next replacements (which may be at month start for some cases).
Example – in Western Desert, the Germans fulfill a loss requirement of 2 strength points by reducing a full strength 9-10 panzer division to a cadre. They have exceeded their loss requirement by 7. They receive 2 replacement RE points as compensation, added to the German armor replacement pool.
Example – in Fire in the East, the Russians must fulfill at 2 SP loss requirement and remove a 4-6 rifle division to do so. They add 1 factor to their next infantry replacements (4-2 is the overfulfillment, 2, minus 1 per occasion, yielding 1 back here).
No replacement REs are earned for overfulfilling combat loss requirements if the units reduced are marked out of supply at the moment of the combat.
Note that losses of 50% of defender’s strength remain possible all the way to the top column of the CRT. You can further reduce your expected losses by earning DRMs for armor superiority or bombardment, but just via odds you will always have some chance of losses.
AR means the attacker must retreat 1 hex, DR means the defender must retreat 2 hexes and the attacker may advance into the defender’s hex.
X1 means both sides lose 50% of the weaker side’s SP strength.
0 results are no effect, same as the attacker repulsed in the original.
Units forced to retreat through enemy ZOCs may do so, but must reduce 1 division unit to cadre for each ZOC entered. If they have no divisional units they must instead eliminate 1 non-divisional unit for each such hex. Friendly units do negate enemy ZOCs in their own hex for this retreat purpose.
In conjunction with easier overrun behavior during movement, the “soft” ZOC system of original Europa needs to be hardened up a bit for non-mechanized units, specifically.
The cost to leave a ZOC is now +2 MPs for all unit types. Only mechanized/motorized units (armor symbol, armored infantry symbol, or motorized/motorcycle symbols with 10 movement allowance) can move ZOC to ZOC and doing so costs +3 MPs; the unit’s nationality does not matter. Non-mechanized units may not move ZOC to ZOC, and must stop on entering any enemy ZOC. Mechanized units may continue moving if they can pay the MP cost for additional hexes.
Since non-mechanized units may not move from ZOC to ZOC, they also cannot initiate an overrun if doing so would move directly from one ZOC to another from hexes other than the one they want to overrun.
Overruns – This is a major change. Overruns may be conducted during movement or exploitation movement as ordinary attacks by 1 moving stack vs 1 defending hex. They don’t need 10-1 odds and they never get auto elimination; they always attack using the CRT even if at or beyond the 7-1 column.
A single stack may only conduct 1 overrun in a given movement phase, though it may continue moving afterward if it has MPs remaining and cleared the target hex. If the target hex is not cleared, then the overrun stack must halt in the hex from which it made the attempt. Only 1 overrun attempt may be made in a given movement phase against a given enemy held hex; if they repulse the first such attempt they may not be overrun again by a new stack.
Overrun attacks calculate armor odds and advantage normally, but may not use air support or artillery bombardment – those only happen for the combat phase at their scheduled times.
Overrun costs 3 MPs plus the full cost of entry to the defender’s hex. Any costs to exit ZOCs or move from ZOC to ZOC, or restrictions on doing so, also apply and must be paid, for ZOCs exerted by other enemy units, but not ZOCs from the hex being overrun itself.
Overruns are not allowed in mud weather turns, and may also not be attempted against wooded rough, mountain, swamp, and forest terrain. Clear, woods, normal rough, and all city types can be overrun in all other weather conditions. Overruns are also not allowed across major river hexsides unless they are frozen.
Stacking – the stacking limit is 10 REs, any mix allowed. In mountain this is reduced to 7 REs. Don’t count divisions, regiments, artillery separately. If you put 2 divisions in a hex you have room for all the usual extras; if you have 3 in a given hex, you only have room for 1 extra. This will reduce stack heights to 4 or less most places, and not allow any of the 8 high monstrosities of the original rules.
Revised Sequence of Play
Phasing, supplies, and replacement changes –
Reinforcements, withdrawals, and unit upgrades happen in the initial phase as in the initial sequence of play. Replacement points are also received at this time but they are not used at this time. That comes at the end of the player turn, instead. Nor is supply checked in the initial phase. Supply points (used to fund operations, see below) are also received in the initial phase (see below).
In the air phase, all air operations are assigned and resolved, with ground support operations earning +1 DRMs for subsequent combat phase attacks marked if hits are scored on those missions. See below for detailed air mission procedures and timing.
Within the combat phase, each attack that includes attacking Artillery units will be preceded by a Barrage step. Total all attacking artillery strengths taking part in the attack, find its column on the bombardment chart, apply any shifts and DRMs, and roll for the barrage effect. Then immediately conduct that combat and fully resolve it.
In the supply phase, first check all phasing player units already marked as out of supply (all rules about supply paths are as in the original). If they are still out of supply and cannot trace a valid supply path of any length, then they are Isolated and subject to Isolation Attrition. Remove out of supply markers from any previously out of supply units now back in supply. Next mark all out of supply units out of supply. They are not subject to Isolation Attrition until the following game turn, and only if still Isolated at that time.
Notice, non-phasing units are not checked until after their own turn, so they will always have an opportunity – at full combat strength and movement allowance – to get back into supply before being so marked. Once marked out of supply, however, a unit remains so until the end of its next player turn.
Isolation Attrition –
Each hex subject to Isolation Attrition may first decide to Break Out. This will automatically eliminate all units in that stack, including cadres, but will provide some replacements to the owning player in return. The election is hex by hex and must be declared before the Isolation Attrition roll is made. Break Out is always voluntary.
After declaring any Break Outs, move to resolving actual Isolation Attrition on remaining Isolated units. To do so, roll 2D6 for each Isolated hex. On a 6 or less, the stack must fulfill a 50% loss result normally. There are DRMs that can affect this roll, listed below. If the hex did declare Breakout, all units are removed but the excess of the losses thereby taken over any required loss from the attrition roll, minus 1, is the number of infantry REs added to that nation’s replacement pool. Note that even armor units generate infantry replacements in this case; their equipment is considered lost. Determine the RE equivalent of unfulfilled losses as in ordinary combat loss allocation, described above.
If the modified Isolation Attrition roll is 7 or higher, there are no attrition losses to that hex to this game turn. If the declared Break Out, the units are still removed, with the full amount removed generating infantry replacements as above. Meaning in that case, total strength divided by 3, round down, minus 1, is the number of friendly infantry replacement steps earned by that Break Out.
Attrition DRMs, all are cumulative –
adjacent to any enemy combat units, -1
any hex in Eastern Europe, Russia, Scandinavia, or North Africa, -1
winter season except in North Africa, -1
within the unit’s home country, +1
can trace a path to a friendly major city hex, +1
The replacement phase now comes after the combat, exploitation phases, and the new end of player turn supply phase. A unit may not take replacements if it took part in an attack in this player turn’s combat phase or moved in the exploitation phase. It may be in ZOC (this is a change). It must be in supply to take replacements. It may have moved in the normal movement phase and may even have conducted an overrun in that movement phase, but it must have been “inactive” since then, effectively.
Cadres may be brought onto the map for 1 RE of the appropriate type from the destroyed units pile, placed at this time as you would reinforcements. Single step units may also be brought in at this time in the same manner. Cadres already on the map can be rebuilt to full strength for 2 replacement REs of the appropriate type. You cannot bring out a dead cadre and rebuild it to full using replacements in the same turn.
Note, the intention is that forces that wish to “refit” to full strength must operationally “pause” to do so. Note that “replacement flow” will generally be higher in this revised system due to loss allocation mechanics, and to a lesser extent Breakout based replacements in some scenarios.
Note that units that take small losses may sometimes generate enough replacement points to recover to full strength (see the Western Desert panzer division example above), but they will have to take a turn “off” combat and exploitation movement to “refit” with those replacement points.
The phasing player moves any of his air units to mission hexes. He may perform fighter sweep operations against enemy patrol fighters and against ready fighters at enemy airfields, and resolves any such sweep missions first.
Fighter sweep is resolved as one round of air to air combat between the sweeping fighters and their chosen targets. Each sweeping fighter picks one enemy fighter to engage; if they outnumber the defending fighters they may double up etc, but must be spread as evenly as possible. In each fight, both sides fire, and the defending fighter remains unless an R, A, or X result is obtained against it. It may fire at as many fighters as engage it, while each of the sweeping fighters fires only once and returns to base.
After all fighter sweeps are resolved, the non-phasing player may intercept any phasing player air missions with his patrol fighters and ready fighters from his airfields, including those that survived sweeps. Both base and patrol fighters may intercept within 1/2 their fighter’s listed range from its patrol hex or its ready airbase. Interception is always voluntary, and any number may be sent after any enemy mission.
Intercepting fighters must first fight any escorting fighter groups with the intercepted mission. The intercepting fighters now have only one attack each and none may pick other targets while any escorting fighters remain. If there are no remaining escorts, each remaining escorting fighter may pick any one bomber to attack and conduct one round vs those. Note that fighters on escort missions do not contribute strike value, and if on strike missions they may be targeted or ignored at the interceptor’s option, like any other bombing group.
Interdiction missions use the tactical strike rating as the chance on D6 to place an interdiction zone, which costs +1 MP to enter for enemy units in a 1 hex radius. SMP costs are also increased by the same amount. Supply lines traced through any number of interdiction zones must be 1 hex shorter than their normal allowed length (itself dependend on the weather as usual). If an interdiction zone (center hex) is placed on a rail line, there is also a rail break in that hex.
Attacks on airbases always target the base itself for points of damage. However, each hit on the airbase also moves 1 active air unit there to inactive status. Determine the affected air unit randomly. Hits on airbases never permanently eliminate enemy air units. Airbase hits can be repaired by 1 point per turn after that player’s air phase. Hits reduce the number of air units that may be flown from that airbase.
Besides the listed strategic bombing missions of port, rail capacity, factories and Russian replacements, all “rail marshaling yard” attacks also reduce enemy supply points on their supply track by 1 per hit, subject to the same limits on effective hits per target as the rail mission. In addition, hits on factories and Soviet supply cities reduce Russian replacements by 1 for every 2 hits recorded against them, not 1 per 3 hits as in the original rules. In games with explicit supply units (e.g. Western Desert), only results with 2 hits reduce supply by 1 step, while “1” hit results have no effect.
Fire in the East logistics adjustments
The following adjustments to FITE logistics are recommended for realism. RR engineers can convert a rail gauge for 1 MP spent in the hex, beyond the cost of moving into it, instead of the 2 MP in the original rules. Increase the supply distances in hexes for truck units by 1 hex in all weather conditions, thus 4 in clear and 2 even in mud. However, the ability to “deplete” a truck to trace to it is removed completely – they only act as extenders.
Truck counters can double their range (to 8 hexes in clear weather) by flipping to their “deplete” side, but any unit tracing supply through such an “extended” truck link is only put into defensive supply. The truck can remain in this state indefinitely, it is not used up, and it can revert to full supply but only normal (4 hex in clear weather) range in the owning player’s movement phase.
Defensive supply is the same as being out of supply the first turn in the original rules, meaning halved attack and motorized unit movement allowance, but full defense strength. A mechanized unit in defensive supply cannot move in its mechanized movement phase, and artillery units cannot bombard, and provide only 1 defense strength on defense, as though unsupplied. Units provided such defensive supply never deteriorate further or suffer isolation attrition.
Logistics and attack supply
Europa is a relatively simple game system that uses only trace supply, but as a result it can allow too high an operating tempo for realism, particularly in the larger games. Without spoiling that simplicity with full OCS style supply movement modeling, the following rules put some overall limitations on operating tempo.
Every turn that a mechanized division unit moves costs 1 supply point – this allows full MP expenditure in movement and mechanized movement phases. Motorized divisions can be fueled for 1/2 point each. Every division unit that attacks in a combat or overrun costs 1 supply point (exception – Axis minor infantry or cavalry divisions and German security divisions pay only 1 supply point per 2 such divisions involved). All artillery units supporting a given combat cost 1 supply point. Using any 3 air units on a given turn costs 1 supply point, round to the nearest whole point cost. OOS units never spend supply to perform any actions, including attacks at 1/2 combat factors, but in supply units may not attack as OOS. No other actions costs any supply, including moving all non-mechanized units, defending in any number of combats, and all actions by cadres and units below division size, other than artillery support.
Scenarios should give supply point stocks and flow rates, which may vary by calendar time or positions reached on the map. If the supply costs of a given move or attack cannot be paid then that move or attack may not be made. A mechanized division that is not supplied for movement can move 1/2 its MA in its normal movement phase only but may not attack that turn.
Fire in the East Supply rates
For classic Fire in the East Barbarossa, for example, German supplies vary by how far into Russia their foremost units are. They have their highest supply rate before any units have reached the line Odessa-Kiev-Minsk-Riga, their second highest until reaching the line Rostov-Voronezh-Tula-Moscow-Kalinin-Leningrad, and their lowest after reaching any of the line Grozny-Stalingrad-Saratov-Gorki. For each of these lines, being within 2 hexes of any of the named cities or beyond direct lines drawn between them counts as having reached that line, and the furthest extension controls which is used.
German supply rate runs 200-160-120-80 per turn in the zones divided by those lines, with an initial stockpile of 120. Unspent stockpiled supply is reduced proportionally when the next zone is reached e.g. -20% when 2nd zone is hit, -25% when 3rd is hit, and -33% when the last zone is hit.
The Germans also get a special 160 supply point allocation for their first “surprise” turn, for air, fuel, and attacks by units of AG North, Center, and South only (no overruns and no exploitation phase). These cannot be saved, however – use them or lose them. They then receive their normal turn 1 supply of 200 for their regular turn 1.
For the Russians, their supply rate runs 120-160-120-80 per turn in the same zones due to distance and loss of economic base, with an initial stockpile of 160, but they then also receive +40 per turn from May 1942 onward (reflecting northern lend lease mostly) and an additional +40 per turn from July 1943 to the end of the war (reflecting southern lend lease and additional economic capacity coming online). Russian stockpiled supply is never reduced for transitions to a new zone.
Weather and supply rates
Both sides reduce their received supply by 10% in Frost turns, 20% in Snow turns, and 30% in Mud turns. (This reflects about half of supply by rail not being affected, and half by truck suffering in line with the reduction in allowed supply line lengths).
Adjustments to Russian replacement rates
The Russian replacements rate is somewhat too low to yield an historical trajectory for the Russian fielded force total, given the damage the Germans can be expected to inflict from their own force level, and the above logistic limits. The following changes are therefore made to the Russian replacement system, as well.
All Russian infantry replacement locations that bring 1, 3, and 5 RPs per turn in original FITE instead bring, 2, 4, and 6 RPs per turn respectively. This is 2 per turn for Arkhangelsk, Riga, Stalino, Stalingrad, and Kazan, 4 per turn from Kiev, Leningrad, and the Eastern MDs off map, and 6 per turn from Moskva.
Each operating Soviet factory generates 2 RPs per turn for armor or artillery replacements instead of 1 RP per turn.
This is easy to remember – all replacements are now even numbers and all previously odd numbers “round up”. Note this makes the maximum replacement rate 60 per turn if all locations are Soviet controlled and all factories are working. Since Minsk and Riga with 4 RPs between them are likely to fall even before the first replacement turn (August I), however, that maximum is unlikely to be realized. At the historical German 1941 high water mark, the Russians will be getting 36 RPs per turn (counting 3 factories moved as inactive). They might average 45 per turn over the 1941 campaign as a whole.
Fire in the East historical set up and surprise turn
Russian forces in each military district listed under any “Army” must set up either directly on the border or 1 hex behind it, and every hex along the border must be covered by a zone of control. Russian forces listed under any of the “Mechanized Corps” must set up 3-5 hexes from the border. Non-divisional artillery units with 6 MA other than siege artillery must set up stacked with the Army units on the border or 1 hex behind it. All other non-divisional units may set up in any hex containing other units from the Army, Mechanized Corps, or Reserves listings in the same military district.
German units may set up along or behind the border, but may not move up to the border before the surprise turn combat phase. No overruns are allowed in the surprise turn, and the only allowed ground unit movement is across the border in Soviet territory, where Russian positions and ZOCs allow (this will always require stopping on the first hex, since the Russians must set up with ZOCs all along the border). German units may also not move ZOC to ZOC; they must stop on the first ZOC encountered. There is also no exploitation phase in the surprise turn, only advance after combat into hexes taken, where applicable. The intention is only to move to contact on the border anywhere the Russians start back a hex, then a combat phase. Full movement, overruns, ZOC infiltrations etc all start on the full June II German turn.
The Axis receives 160 special supply points for the surprise attack turn which must be used that turn or are lost.
The air surprise rules from original FITE are used on the surprise turn but with the change that 1 Russian air unit is eliminated only for every 2 attacking German air units dedicated to their airfield surprise strike on the surprise turn. (Historically, the Russians lost 16% of their aircraft in that attack, not 75% of them; only the western military district lost more than half its aircraft).
After the Axis surprise turn’s combat phase, play proceeds to the start of the normal Axis June II game turn.
Comments and especially playtest reports welcome.