Every type of air or ground unit that saw combat in the European theater of war is present. Paratroop drops and armored assaults along with amphibious invasions are replicated.
- 1943 Campaign - 3 July 43 to 3 Aug 45 (109 turns)
- 1944 Campaign (May Start) – 11 May 44 to 1 Aug 45 (64 turns)
- 1944 Campaign (D-Day Start) – 30 May 44 to 6 Aug 45 (62 turns)
- Air Campaign – 1 May 44 to 28 May 44 (4 turns)
- Operation Husky – 3 July 44 to 20 August 45 (7 turns)
- Salerno to Rome 43-44 – 9 Sept 43 to 28 June 44 (42 turns/multiplayer only)
- Battleground Italy – 10 July 43 to 4 May 45 (95 turns)
- Breakout and Pursuit – 25 July 44 to 9 Oct 44 (11 turns)
- Westwall – 17 Sept 44 to 10 Dec 44 (12 turns)
With the addition of the 'Operation Torch' DLC you gain these scenarios:
The hypothetical campaign is not that far-fetched. There was actually a bomb on board Hitler's plane on that date; unfortunately it malfunctioned.
For those of us who like to game the Italian campaign it is here in a big way. You can play from the invasion of Sicily to the fight for Rome itself. If you are a battle of the Bulge fanatic it is here also, but be aware that you are running the entire front in western Europe, not just the small area where the Bulge was fought.
As the Allied commander you get to choose where and when you will invade. The game is an empty canvas that you can use to make your own decisions. Playing as the German high command you can decide to fight on the beaches as Rommel wanted, or to gather a huge armored fist off the beaches to throw the allies into the sea, as Rundstedt wanted. As the German player you have no idea of what will happen. You have to try and make educated guesses on what the Allies are going to do.
This is not only a large game it is also a complex one. As the commander for the entire western front you are responsible for not only warfare, but also logistics. There are many things you will want to do each turn, but do you have the resources to pull them off? In complexity it would fit right between 'War in the East' and another Grigsby title 'War in the Pacific'. You can play against the computer, hotseat, or multiplayer. With new updates, the multiplayer options have changed and now include 3 and 4 player games. You can also have 2 player cooperative against the AI.
The audio component of the game is top notch. The obligatory sounds for battle, etc. are great, but where it really shines is the background music. On most games the first thing we do is usually try and shutdown the background music; I've actually played the various .wav files to just listen to them.
To sum it up, the game works as a simulation of land and air combat in the second half of WWII. It is complex, and you will probably be a bit overwhelmed at first. It does come with a manual, over 300 pages long, a living manual ( for all the changes in its many updates), and a players handbook that comes with many one page guides to help you along the way. All of the manuals, etc. have printer friendly versions included. There are also a few videos included to help the newbie along the way.
One other thing we have to discuss is the price. Yes, it is a digital download of $79.99 US for the base game and another $19.99 for the DLC. To put it into perspective, a three hour night out with a friend will run anywhere from $50-100 US or even higher depending upon your taste. This game is going to give you literally hundreds of hours of playing time. It is money well spent.
Game: Gary Grigsby's War in the West
Developer: 2by3 Games
Distributor: Matrix/Slitherine Games
Date of Review: 11/21/2016
Editor Comment: Go check out our interview of Joel Billings!