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War Diary # 21 A Wargaming Journal Issue #21  War Diary is an amazing wargame magazine that I have just found out about. Unlike most wargami...

War Diary #21: A Wargaming Journal War Diary #21: A Wargaming Journal

War Diary #21: A Wargaming Journal

War Diary #21: A Wargaming Journal

War Diary # 21

A Wargaming Journal

Issue #21

 War Diary is an amazing wargame magazine that I have just found out about. Unlike most wargaming magazines this one does not come with a game inside. It is strictly articles about games and the history behind them. These are the articles in issue # 21:

4 MEETING TRIUMPH AND DISASTER: The Italian Campaigns     in East Africa and Greece by Paul Comben. The second installment   of this three-part look at the Italian military in World War II.

16 THE FALL OF CRETE: The Games by Andrew McGee. A     “compare and contrast” look at a number of games on the invasion   of Crete, 1941.

28 CRETE: The Battle by John D. Burt. A brief overview of the   battle.

34 GUADALCANAL: Updating a Classic by Mike Nagel.   Designer’s notes for this new game from War Diary, a homage to   the  Avalon Hill classic.

39 ROADS TO LENINGRAD AND MOSCOW: Con-Z House   Rules by Clair Conzelman. New “house rules” to facilitate play of   these two Vance von Borries’ designs.

44 THE ITALIAN ARMY IN THE RUSSIAN CAMPAIGN by   Patrick Cloutier. Here the historian looks at the Italian order of     battle for this game from Compass, and includes some   recommended adjustments. 

49 FRONT TOWARD THE ENEMY: A Review by Arrigo Velicoga.   An in-depth look at this title from Multi-Man Publishing.

56 PASS IN REVIEW: Capsule reviews by John D. Burt and Andy   Nunez.

Issue # 20s Cover

 All of the articles that I read in issue # 21 were top notch. This was both the gaming and the history articles. I am very surprised that I let this magazine slip under my radar for so long. I am always hunting for information about the Italian participation in World War II. I was so enthralled by the first article (which is actually #2 of 3) that I am going to have to get whatever issue the first part is in. The way that the writers use the games to show the different historical situations is pretty amazing. 

 The article comparing the different games on the invasion of Crete is worth its weight in gold. I have a number of the games that the writer compares, and while I do not agree with some of the conclusions, the writer certainly has used the rules of the different games and their different ways of winning a victory for either side.

 The next article is called 'a brief overview' of Operation Merkur for the capture of the Island of Crete. This article is an excellent overview of the campaign and is a great starting point for someone who wants to learn about the battles for Crete.

 The next article is an in depth look at the games 'Roads to Leningrad' and 'Roads to Moscow' games. These were designed by Vance von Borries and released by GMT Games. The author Clair Conzelman gives us his Con-Z House Rules for the game, along with a good look at the rules themselves. I do not own either game, but I still like reading about other games. 

 The Italian Army in Compass Games 'Russian Front' is next delved into by author Patrick Cloutier. When and how the Italian units should arrive on the map are gone into in minute detail.

 Multi-Mans Publishing's 'Front Toward the Enemy' is given a deep  review by Arrigo Velicogna. 

 Last, but not least, is a part of the magazine they call 'Pass in Review'. First, there is a review of Quarterdeck International's '278th Squadron'. This is neat little card game about trying to torpedo Allied ships with the SM79 Italian bomber. Then there is a review of the book 'Stalingrad: New Perspectives on an Epic Battle, Volume one, The Doomed City' by Christer Bergstrom. The reviewer and I are on the same page that this book is something that everyone interested in history should have.

Their first Game Collaboration

 This is from issue # 21 about the above game:

"One of the unfortunate side effects for prolific wargame designers these days is “pre-order constipation.” Much like the supply chain problems that much of the economy has been suffering from, game designs that are ready for publication get stuck in pre-order queues, waiting for enough orders to come in to allow a design to “graduate” to production or, for those designs lucky enough to get there, wait for their own opportunity to float to the top of the production queue for actual printing. This is not a slam against those publishers who use pre-order systems to manage their production, as the process is necessary to ensure that their revenue stream continues unabated.

 But what’s a designer to do while they wait?  In my particular case, in addition to working on other designs that will eventually find their way into the queue, I thought it would be helpful to practice my graphic design chops by redoing the maps and counters for some classic games that have been out of print for years. I started with Avalon Hill’s Blitzkrieg and then tackled their 1914 game, each of which are over fifty years old. The third game I converted was the 1966 edition of Guadalcanal, also from Avalon Hill, but not the “American Heritage” version that was more of a naval operations game involving fleet and air management and was a sister game to the reissue of Avalon Hill’s Midway. This older version of Guadalcanal focused on land-based operations and the U.S. Marine Corps’ efforts to capture and hold Henderson Field from Japanese occupants."

 I will be reviewing their Guadalcanal Game soon, so there will be more on that in another post.

The Cover of the Next Issue

 This is an incredible magazine from front to back. Just like me, you might not agree with all of the different writers' ideas or their take on different games. However, it is well worth the read. 

 The is the magazine's information:

"Subscriptions to War Diary are for three issues, with subscribers being able to choose between receiving traditional print issues or electronic pdf copies.  

Please join us.  One year print subscriptions (three print issues) are $32.00 (U.S. and Canada), and $46.00 (Overseas).  PDF subscriptions (three issues) are $16.00.

 All subscribers will receive single use discount codes good for 25% off any single order from LNL Publishing, 20% off any single order from Revolution Games, and 15% off a single order from Diffraction Entertainment (TKC)!  Visit their websites at,, and ​ to view their available products."

 This is a very good deal. Thank you, for letting me take a look at War Diary # 21.

War Diary Magazine: