Fortress Koenigsberg (BFC)

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Description

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6th April 1945 - Soviet forces of the 1st Baltic Front under Marshal Bagramyan and the 3rd Belorussian Front under General Chernyakhovsky have cut off East Prussia from Germany. Because of unspeakable Soviet atrocities committed in the first German town to fall, Nemmersdorf, the greatest evacuation operation in history, dwarfing Dunkirk easily, has been ordered by Admiral Donitz. As General Otto Lasch, you have been chosen to play a part in this great endeavour in Koenigsberg.

On paper you command the 3rd Panzer Army, 69th and 367th Infantry Divisions and 2nd Volksgrenadier divisions together redesignated as Army Group Blue. In reality, attrition has already reduced your Corps to only 3 operational brigades. Your orders are to hold off the 4 Russian armies fielding over 500 tanks besieging Koeigsberg long enough for civilians to escape via the sea (defined as building as many '10000 saved' units as possible). Units shipped to Germany may be disbanded.

Discussion

The Fortress Koenigsberg scenario was of a markedly different type, it was the only scenario where the objective was to retreat instead of attacking.The player 'wins' by defending civilians as they are evacuated.(trivia: the world's worst maritime disaster was the sinking of the passenger liner Wilhelm Gustloff during the evacuation was, not the Titanic)

The details of the valiant effort to evacuate the German elements cut-off in Prussian have been meticulously studied and included in the scenario. Individual commanders are referenced and individual battles locations such as the Citadel, Devau Aerodrome and the Krupp factory and the efforts to relieve the defending forces by the 28 Corps are all part of the scenario.

The use of the the Battle Field Chess platform (described in the following section) also allowed an entirely different playing experience. The German commander can actually choose exactly where to deploy all his units before the first turn, allowing the scenario to be replayed several times. He could also call for different event created reinforcements via the BFC desktop buttons.

Battle Field Chess Platform

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Battlefield Chess was developed by Kobayashi as a bridging platform for enthusiasts who were interested in scenario making but were discouraged by the complications of unit slots, graphic files and sound mixing etc. To accomplish this, a topographical map style was created, complete with hills and mountains adorned with contour lines. Military style unit icons flexible enough to be used for any modern battle were also part and parcel of the platform. Using Battlefield Chess, any battle at the divisional level or lower, from D-day to Dessert Storm could be recreated with much less effort.

One notable innovation of BFC was the inclusion of a desk top section isolated from the main map where the commander could choose from different reinforcement options such as a tactical air strike or paratroopers by picking a button to 'press'.

The base scenario that came with Battle Field Chess simulated a battle between two fictional powers, Red and Blue. This took place on a mirror reflection map with exactly the equal number and type of units, hence the term 'chess'. Unlike chess, the starting positions were flexible so that no two games would be identical.

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