T

nv voiiowixc articlc is a
history ol thc dcvclopmcnt
ol thc gamc Panzcr8litz,
starting back in thc latc .µ6cs. My
sourcc matcrial stcms lrom many
pcriod gaming magazincs lrom thc
latc Sixtics to thc carly Scvcntics.
A lcw, likc Te General \ol. ,, No. ¸
and Strategy & Tactics No. ::, havc
offcrcd grcat dcsigncr’s notcs and
D-Elim \ol. :, No. .. cvcn printcd
a gcncalogy ol thc succcssivc gamc
dcsigns that lcd to Panzcr8litz.
Many othcrs only offcrcd littlc tid
bits ol inlormation, usually in thcir
rcspcctivc gaming ncws scctions
which, whcn takcn individually, say
vcry littlc, but whcn takcn all to
gcthcr, rcally round out thc inlor
mation supplicd by thc othcr major
articlcs.
HIGHWAY 
!: is cvxvv~iiv ~cvvvb that thc
first dcsign that lcd to Panzcr8litz
was a tcst gamc callcd Highway
6.. !n carly .µ6·, Jamcs Ðunnigan
was riding high on thc popular
ity ol his Jutland gamc that had
bccn rclcascd thc ycar bclorc by
Avalon Hill. !n that gamc hc suc
ccsslully convcrtcd naval miniaturcs
to a scmiboardgamc statc. Having
donc that, hc dccidcd to scc il hc
could do it again, this timc with ar
morcd fighting vchiclcs. !ndccd, it
had bccn somcthing hc had wantcd
to do lor a lcw ycars but, at that
timc, collccting hard data on ~vvs
and thcir guns was a difficult thing
to do. Hard data just was not vcry
availablc and hc had to rcly on in
lormation glcancd lrom thc various
armor miniaturc rulcs that wcrc in
cxistcncc at thc timc, such as Schw-
erpunkt and thc rcccntly rclcascd
Angriff.
From thcsc hc dcviscd a sim
plc littlc gamc which hc cvcntu
ally callcd Highway 6.. Hcrc, cach
playcr was providcd with a numbcr
ol largc . by : inch countcrs ol dil
lcrcnt typcs ol ~vvs. Tc timc pcriod
was .歭, using thc availablc tanks
ol thc timc. As thc sctting was thc
¡astcrn Front, thcsc ~vvs wcrc Gcr
man and Russian. For thc Gcrmans
hc uscd vz ivns, Panthcrs, Tigcrs
(both is and iis), Nashorns, sc iiics,
and halltracks. For thc Russians hc
uscd :¸¡cs, :¸¡/·¸s, si,6s, si
·¸s, ,si.::s, ,siis, and LcndLcasc
Shcrmans and halltracks. ¡ach
countcr containcd a top vicw ol thc
vchiclc in qucstion, its namc or dcs
ignation, thc Movcmcnt Factor on
thc uppcr arca ol thc countcr, and
thrcc numbcrs along thc sidc, giv
ing thc maximum armor thickncss
ol thc lront, sidc ,and rcar ol thc
vchiclc. Tcrc was no inlantry or ar
tillcry, just ~vvs, at first.
Play was simplc. Tcrc was no
board. Highway 6. was playcd on
thc floor or a vcry largc tablc, just
likc Jutland. Tc gamc turn had two
phascs: movcmcnt and firc. Ðuring
thc movcmcnt phasc thc playcrs
would first writc down thc planncd
movcmcnt ol thcir countcrs on a
piccc ol papcr and thcn all playcrs
would movc thcir units simultanc
ously, lollowing thc dircctions ol
thcir ordcrs. Tc :v numbcr on thc
countcr was thc numbcr ol inchcs
it could movc in a turn. !t cost onc
inch ol movcmcnt to turn up to µc
dcgrccs and two inchcs ol movc
mcnt to turn lrom µ. to .·c dc
grccs. Physically, thc countcrs wcrc
movcd using a straightcdgc rulcr.
Movcmcnt was voluntary, a playcr
could movc somc, all, or nonc ol his
AN INFORMAL HISTORY
OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF
PANZERBLITZ
BY
ALAN R. ARVOLD
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
:
countcrs as hc plcascd. !n thc fir
ing phasc, playcrs would dctcrminc
thc rangc bctwccn thcir countcrs
and thcir intcndcd targcts using a
yard stick or a tapc mcasurc. \c
hiclcs with turrcts could firc in any
dircction, whilc vchiclcs with hull
mountcd guns could only firc in
thc lorward arc radiating lrom thc
lront sidc ol thc countcr. Playcrs
would thcn consult thc firing tablcs
providcd in thc gamc. ¡ach tablc
was lor a ccrtain typc ol gun carricd
by thc ~vvs, thus morc than onc vc
hiclc could usc thc samc tablc. Tcy
wcrc dividcd into lour columns: thc
first was lor thc rangc in inchcs bc
twccn thc firing unit and thc targct,
thc sccond was thc dicc roll to scc
il thc firing unit hit without having
movcd in thc prcvious movcmcnt
phasc, thc third was thc dicc roll
to scc il thc firing unit hit and had
movcd in thc prcvious movcmcnt
phasc, and lourth was thc armor
pcnctration at thc givcn rangc. Tc
playcrs would first roll to scc il thcy
hit thc targct vchiclcs. Tosc that
did would go to pcnctration col
umn to scc il thcy picrccd thc targct
vchiclc’s armor or not, dcpcnding
on whcrc it was hit (lront, sidc, or
rcar). !l thc tank was pcnctratcd, it
was flippcd ovcr to its othcr sidc to
signily that it was a wrcck. Òthcr
wisc thc tank was still in thc gamc.
Linc ol sight/firc was vcry simplc as
thcrc was no tcrrain, vchiclcs and
wrccks wcrc thc only things that
could block ios/iov. \isibility was
unlimitcd, thc guns could all rcach
thc maximum rangcs on thcir rc
spcctivc firing charts.
Tc gamc provcd popular among
thc playtcst crowd at Poultron Prcss,
in lact, scvcral ol thcm brought
woods and buildings lrom rcgular
miniaturcs tablcs in an cffort to in
troducc tcrrain into thc systcm, but
all thcy provcd to bc wcrc placcs to
hidc bchind. Ònc carly complaint
conccrncd thc halltracks, thc ma
chinc guns on which could not pcn
ctratc any tank: thcy thus bccamc
mcrc targcts. Ðunnigan solvcd that
problcm by giving thcm antitank
guns to transport. Tc guns wcrc
on onc inch squarc countcrs with a
top vicw ol thc gun in qucstion and
thc gun calibcr printcd in millimc
tcrs. Tc Russians got thc ,6.:mm
gun and thc Gcrmans rcccivcd thc
,¸mm and a lcw ··mm guns as
wcll. Simplc rulcs lor transporting
and loading/unloading wcrc dc
viscd. Tc antitank guns fircd in
thc samc dircction as thc assault
guns with thc ··mm bcing ablc to
firc in all dircctions by virtuc ol its
antiaircralt mounting. !n this statc,
thc gamc provcd to bc so popular
that Ðunnigan startcd to dcvisc a
vcrsion ol it lor thc North Alrican
thcatrc, but no hard copy was cvcr
madc lor play tcsting.
STATE FARM 
!x :nv v~viv si::vv ol .µ6· onc
ol thc playtcstcrs, ¡di 8irsan, madc
a boardgamc vcrsion ol Highway 6..
Hc prcscntcd it to Jamcs Ðunnigan
who, as was his wont, polishcd it up
a bit and gavc it a ncw titlc: Statc
Farm 6µ. 8ccausc thc gamc was
playcd on a hcxboard, tcrrain could
now bc lully addcd, which cntailcd
thc lormulation ol ncw sighting
rulcs. Tc countcrs wcrc shrunk
down to onchall inch sizc with thc
samc picturcs and valucs on thcm
as prcviously. Tc firing charts wcrc
casy to convcrt by mcrcly changing
thc distancc in inchcs to hcxcs. Tc
movcmcnt lactors on thc countcrs
did not changc but now bccamc
movcmcnt points with cach typc ol
tcrrain hcx rcquiring a ccrtain num
bcr ol thcm to cntcr. As playtcsting
continucd through thc summcr,
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
¸
morc lcaturcs wcrc addcd to thc
gamc. !nlantry appcarcd in squads
and, ol coursc, a wholc sct ol ncw
rulcs and firing tablcs to accompany
thcm. 8y thc lall artillcry was intro
duccd, first as onboard countcrs
with morc antitank guns, inlantry
guns, and mortars, thcn latcr in thc
lorm ol offboard units lor thc biggcr
artillcry picccs. Tat samc Autumn
morc rulcs camc into into play, such
as mincficlds, lortifications, wcathcr,
moralc, and command and control,
to namc a lcw. Ðozcns ol vchiclcs
wcrc addcd to rcflcct thc diffcrcnt
timc pcriods on thc ¡astcrn Front.
8y thc cnd ol thc ycar thc playtcst
rulcbook had bccomc scvcral inchcs
thick and thc gamc had bccomc cx
ccssivcly rcalistic to thc point that
it was almost impossiblc to play. !n
many ways Statc Farm 6µ was thc
Advanccd Squad Lcadcr ol its day,
thc diffcrcncc bcing that advanccs
in gamc dcsign madc ~si was play
ablc in whcn it camc out in .µ·¸,
whcrcas in .µ6· Statc Farm 6µ was
not. !t was ncvcr publishcd bcyond
a lcw playtcst copics.
!t is intcrcsting to notc that scv
cral aspccts ol Statc Farm 6µ had a
lasting cffcct in thc luturc dcsigns
ol tactical gamcs in thc scrics. For
cxamplc, units that wcrc in covcr
ing tcrrain, or out ol thc ios il in
opcn tcrrain, wcrc not placcd on
thc board until thcy wcrc spottcd.
!n opcn tcrrain that was casy: il
thc unit was within thc maximum
sighting distancc it was automati
cally sccn and placcd on thc board.
Units in covcring tcrrain (woods
and buildings) had to bc spottcd.
Spotting occurrcd cithcr il you had
a lricndly unit in a hcx adjaccnt to
thc hiddcn unit, or il thc hiddcn
unit fircd. Spotting was automatic
whcn adjaccnt, whcrcas spotting a
firing unit was bascd on thc rcsults
lrom a spotting tablc: thc larthcr
away thc spotting units wcrc, thc
lcss chancc thcy had ol sccing thc
firing unit by its muzzlc flashcs. Tc
chanccs ol spotting wcrc bascd on a
sliding scalc and by thc timc you got
out to a rcal lilc distancc ol ¸cc mc
tcrs, thc chanccs wcrc alrcady lcss
than ¸c pcr ccnt. Tis would havc
an impact on thc spotting rulcs ol
Panzcr8litz latcr on.
Anothcr intcrcsting lcaturc was
thc dcvastating fircpowcr ol thc off
board artillcry. Tc indircct firc rulcs
wcrc cxtcnsivc, but it was thc cffccts
ol scoring a hit in thc targct hcx
that was so dcvastating: artillcry ol
thc .c¸mm varicty had a twothirds
chancc ol killing thc unit in thc hcx,
artillcry ol thc .:cmm varicty had
a fivcsixths chancc, and artillcry
ol thc .¸cmm varicty had an auto
matic kill on thcir cffccts tablcs. Òl
coursc dic roll modificrs lor tcrrain
and lortifications in thc targct hcx
could altcr thc rcsults to no cffcct,
cvcn with a .¸cmm piccc. Tc rc
sults wcrc bascd on thc bursting ra
dius ol thc round in qucstion (cach
artillcry unit would firc onc round
pcr attack) and thc odds ol thc said
unit bcing within that radius. Tc
arca in thc hcxcs was quitc small
and only onc unit bc it vchiclc,
gun, or inlantry squad could bc
in a hcx at a timc (thcrc was no
stacking). Tc combat rcsults in thc
gamc wcrc still cithcr “no cffcct” or
“dcstroycd.” ¡vcn armorcd vchiclcs
could bc killcd, bascd on thc prcm
isc that a round that cithcr scorcd a
dircct hit (a rarity) or that landcd
ncarby (most likcly), would damagc
thc tank cnough to gct a mobility
kill and thus takc it out ol thc gamc.
Òl coursc artillcry ol a lcsscr calibcr
(mostly thc onboard artillcry units)
had lcss ol a chancc ol scoring a kill.
All this would havc a prolound cl
lcct whcn Ðunnigan would figurc
out thc attack lactors ol thc big ar
tillcry units in Panzcr8litz that wc
now know so wcll.
Yct anothcr intcrcsting lcaturc
was Ðunnigan’s attcmpt at Com
mand and Control. ¡ach playcr had
to assign his units to “task lorccs” ol
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
¡
up to six units cach (thcsc wcrc cs
scntially platoons as playcrs tcndcd
to assign thc samc typc ol units to
cach group). ¡ach task lorcc was as
signcd an ordcr (Movc, Ðircct Firc,
!ndircct Firc, ctc.), which it thcn had
to pcrlorm lor a pcriod ol six turns.
Ðuring that timc thc playcrs could
not changc thc ordcrs that thcy had
givcn to thcir groups, which had to
carry thcm out rcgardlcss ol what
happcncd clscwhcrc in thc gamc.
At thc cnd ol thc sixturn pcriod,
playcrs could assign ncw ordcrs to
thcir groups lor thc ncxt six turns.
Ðuring subscqucnt rcvisions ol
thc gamc, thc Gcrman playcrs wcrc
givcn thc option ol changing thc
ordcrs lor any or all ol thcir task
lorccs il thcy passcd an initiativc
chcck on yct anothcr ol thc innu
mcrablc charts. For thc last rcvision
ol thc gamc, this wholc Command
and Control proccdurc was droppcd
as it had bccomc too cumbcrsomc
and slowcd play to a crawl. How
cvcr, Ðunnigan savcd and modificd
thc proccdurc and it would bc sccn
again in thc Simultancous Movc
mcnt Tactical Gamcs introduccd by
svi in thc midScvcntics.
Statc Farm 6µ provcd to bc cvcn
morc popular with thc playtcstcrs
at Poultron Prcss than Highway
6., cvcn il it did cvcntually bccamc
unplayablc. !t was modificd scvcral
timcs, although all ol its vcrsions
tcndcd to bc rathcr similar to onc
anothcr. !t should bc notcd that in
thc last vcrsion, Ðunnigan gavc thc
countcrs attack, rangc, and dclcnsc
lactors in ordcr to do away with thc
nccd lor firing charts. Vhilc not al
togcthcr succcsslul, this would provc
to bc a stcp in thc right dircction
and it can bc said that this innova
tion gavc birth to thc nowlamous
“Ðunnigan Systcm” ol countcr valuc
dctcrmination. Vhilc Statc Farm
6µ wasn’t rcally playablc, it did show
that tactical lcvcl combat could
bc simulatcd in a board gamc and
lrom this systcm camc thc Tacti
cal Gamc Scrics in .µ6µ, in which
Ðunnigan startcd a wholc ncw sc
rics ol cxpcrimcntal land gamcs to
covcr diffcrcnt pcriods throughout
history. Tcsc wcrc ccrtainly suc
ccsslul: Tactical Gamc .c bccamc
Grcnadicr, Tactical Gamc .. lcd to
Grunt, Tactical Gamc .¸ bccamc
Ccnturion, Tactical Gamc .¡ bc
camc Rcnaissancc ol !nlantry, Tac
tical Gamc .6 bccamc Ðark Agcs,
Tactical Gamc .· bccamc Phalanx,
Tactical Gamc .µ cvcntually lcd
to Soldicrs, and last, but not lcast,
good old Tactical Gamc ¸ bccamc
Panzcr8litz.
TACTICAL GAME 
A: :nv nvcixxixc ov .µ6µ, Ðun
nigan startcd on a rcdcsign ol Statc
Farm 6µ. Hc dccidcd that thc tac
tical lcvcl ol singlc vchiclcs, squads,
and artillcry picccs was too complcx
to bc put into a playablc lormat in
a boardgamc, so hc raiscd thc lcvcl
to platoonsizc clcmcnts, sccing as
thc platoon was thc basic tactical
unit in Vcstcrn armics. Howcvcr,
lor thc Russians hc had to go to thc
company lcvcl as this was thc basic
tactical unit in thcir army. To ac
commodatc units ol thcsc sizcs, thc
scalc ol thc board would havc to in
crcasc. Hc chosc a scalc ol :¸c mc
tcrs pcr hcx. Tc board could now
havc small towns in hcxcs instcad ol
individual buildings, lorcsts instcad
ol small clumps ol trccs, and hills
would occupy a smallcr arca on thc
board, grcatly casing linc ol sight
complications. Also with hcxcs
ol this sizc, multiplc platoons and
cvcn companics could fit into thcm
and thus stacking was introduccd
into thc gamc.
!t was at this timc that thc Ðun
nigan systcm ol dctcrmining coun
tcr valucs dcvclopcd lully, largcly
through trial and crror. For cxamplc,
Ðunnigan first bascd his antiarmor
valucs on thc pcnctration valucs ol
~vcnc rounds at .,ccc mctcrs, but
quickly lound that this did not work
lor smallcr guns whosc pcnctration
valucs wcrc too low at that rangc.
Givcn that thc majority ol thc ar
mor battlcs occurrcd at ¸cc mctcrs
or lcss during thc war, hc lowcrcd
thc dctcrmination rangc to that
distancc. Tis brought thc ~v ol thc
smallcr guns up to a morc acccpt
ablc lcvcl whilc thc biggcr guns did
not incrcasc that much. Tc rangc
lactors wcrc bascd on thc maximum
rangcs ol thc pcnctration tablcs
that hc was using, which is why
thc tanks and antitank guns had
a longcr rangc lactor than thcy do
in Panzcr8litz. Tc dclcnsc lactor
was bascd on thc maximum armor
thickncss ol thc vchiclc in qucstion
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
¸
and thc movcmcnt lactor was sim
ply thc maximum spccd ol thc vc
hiclc dividcd by thrcc. Tc countcrs
startcd to show thc morc lamiliar
“Z” pattcrn ol thc lactors but with
thc lactors in diffcrcnt positions
than what would bc customary latcr
on. Tc vchiclc picturc was a crudc
drawing ol thc top vicw ol thc tanks
or tank dcstroycrs or a sidc vicw ol
thc transportation vchiclcs.
Tc rulcs, whilc vcry simplc, wcrc
ambiguous in somc placcs and
contradictory in othcrs. Tc turn
scqucncc was also simplc: thc Rus
sians movcd thcir units, thcn both
sidcs fircd, rcmoving dcstroycd vc
hiclcs at thc cnd ol thc phasc, thcn
thc Gcrmans movcd thcir units, and
both sidcs fircd again, rcmoving dc
stroycd units at thc cnd ol thc phasc.
!nlantry was rcprcscntcd by riflc
and cnginccr unitcountcrs. Artil
lcry units wcrc also rcprcscntcd, but
only thc onboard varicty (mortars,
~: guns, inlantry guns) lrom Statc
Farm 6µ, thcrc was no offboard ar
tillcry. Tc lactors lor inlantry and
artillcry wcrc thcrc but thc attack
and dclcnsc lactors lor mortars and
ficld guns tcndcd to bc morc pow
crlul than thcy would bc in thcir
final lorm in Panzcr8litz. Linc ol
sight and visibility rulcs wcrc vir
tually noncxistcnt: you could scc
into a covcring tcrrain (town and
woods) hcx but not through it. Tc
combat rcsults tablc still only had
two rcsults: No ¡ffcct or Ðcstroycd.
Tc Òvcrrun attack madc its first
appcarancc in a crudc lorm. Tcrc
wcrc six hypothctical situations
providcd in thc gamc.
Tcrc wcrc many laults with Tac
tical Gamc ¸ but it must bc rcmcm
bcrcd that it was not an cnd product
but rathcr a tcst bcd lor lurthcr dc
vclopmcnt. !t provcd to bc popular
as was sccn in its initial salcs. Altcr
its rclcasc in thc summcr ol .µ6µ, it
sold ovcr :cc copics to outsidc buy
crs, bcsidcs thc copics that wcnt to
thc playtcstcrs. And Avalon Hill,
always with an cyc opcn lor a good
sclling titlc, kcpt a morc than casual
watch on thc dcvclopmcnt ol thc
gamc.
REVISED TACTICAL GAME 
8v :nv svvixc ov .µ,c Ðunnigan
had rcccivcd cnough lccdback on
Tactical Gamc ¸ to scc whcrc thc
bugs in thc gamc wcrc and hc bc
gan to work thcm out. About this
timc thc Ðispcrscd and Ðoublc
Ðispcrscd rcsults appcarcd on thc
cv: and thc critcria workcd out as
to what cach rcsult rcprcscntcd in
rcal lilc. Tc Closc Assault attack
also madc its appcarancc about this
timc. Tc Ðunnigan Systcm contin
ucd to cvolvc as modificrs bcgan to
appcar which altcrcd thc attack and
dclcnsc lactors ol a lot ol vchiclcs
to account lor thc ovcrall tactics
that a unit uscd. Tc rangc lactor ol
most units with antitank guns was
rcduccd to rcflcct thcir maximum
cffcctivc rangcs, which wcrc usu
ally lcss than thc maximum rangcs
listcd on thc pcnctration charts. Tc
attack lactors ol thc onboard artil
lcry wcrc rcfigurcd and lrcqucntly
wcrc substantially rcduccd to rcflcct
additional lactors not prcviously
considcrcd bclorc. Tc offboard ar
tillcry ol Statc Farm 6µ was finally
introduccd in countcr lrom. Vcap
ons classcs wcrc at last cstablishcd
lor thc diffcrcnt main wcapons ol
thc various typcs ol units. Tc cvo
lution ol thc gamc systcm was con
tinuing.
As mcntioncd prcviously, Avalon
Hill was kccping an cyc on thc dc
vclopmcnt proccss. Tcy had just
rclcascd thc gamc Kricgspicl in thc
spring ol .µ,c and wcrc looking lor
a gamc lor thcir lall rclcasc bclorc
Christmas. Vhilc thcy had scvcral
candidatcs such as Lultwaffc and
Òrigins ol Vorld Var Two, thcy
wantcd to dclay thosc lor anothcr
ycar, thcy wantcd a surc scllcr in
thc lall as Kricgspicl was not sclling
all that wcll. Rcprcscntativcs lrom
Avalon Hill approachcd thc pcoplc
at Poultron Prcss, now rcnamcd svi
(Simulations Publications !nc.), at
thc .µ,c Stationary Show in Ncw
York and ncgotiatcd a dcal whcrcby
svi would dcvclop thc gamc to
Avalon Hill’s spccifications, turning
it ovcr to thcm whcn thcy wcrc fin
ishcd, with a Scptcmbcr .µ,c dcad
linc. svi nccdcd thc moncy, as thcy
had rcccntly purchascd thc maga
zinc Strategy & Tactics. Vhilc buy
ing thc magazinc was a bargain (it
only cost thcm onc dollar), putting
it out was anothcr mattcr.
Ðuring thc summcr ol .µ,c thc
dcvclopmcnt ol thc gamc systcm
lollowcd two lincs. Tc first was
Panzcr8litz, which was a simplificd
vcrsion ol thc rcviscd Tactical Gamc
¸ systcm. Tc biggcst diffcrcncc bc
twccn thcm was that in thc lormcr,
a unit could only firc oncc in a turn,
whcrcas in thc lattcr, a unit could
firc scvcral timcs. Tis madc thc :~c
¸ situations vcry bloody, thc stan
dard .cturn sccnario rarcly lastcd
past Turn 6. Avalon Hill wantcd
this part toncd down so that a situ
ation could last thc duration ol thc
turns allottcd to it. Tc othcr linc ol
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
6
dcvclopmcnt would bccomc Tacti
cal Gamc ., which was thcir Vcst
crn Front vcrsion ol thc systcm.
Tc rcviscd rulcs and countcrs
wcrc largcly donc by thc summcr
ol .µ,c, so cmphasis was placcd on
thc dcvclopmcnt ol ncw sccnarios.
Howcvcr, to givc playcrs a tastc
ol what was to comc in thc ncw
Panzcr8litz gamc, a small vcrsion
was inscrtcd in Strategy & Tactics
magazinc No. :: in thc summcr ol
.µ,c. Tc rulcs wcrc closc to thcir
final lorm (only a lcw rough spots
wcrc lclt to smooth out and blocks
had yct to addcd to thc gamc) and
thc countcrs wcrc largcly donc too
(cnough wcrc supplicd to play a
simplc sccnario on thc gamc map in
thc magazinc). At first a singlc big
gamcboard was considcrcd but with
multiplc sccnarios it was dccidcd
that it would bc bcttcr to go with
gcomorphic gamcboards which can
bc sct up in a multitudc ol ways.
Vork on thc sccnarios was hcadcd
up by Robcrt Champcr, Rcdmond
Simonscn did all ol thc artwork lor
thc gamc. 8y Scptcmbcr ol .µ,c thc
gamc was finishcd and turncd ovcr
to Avalon Hill.
PANZERBLITZ
As is wvii xxowx, Panzcr8litz
was publishcd in Òctobcr ol .µ,c.
Vithin months ol its rclcasc, Avalon
Hill was bcing floodcd with rulcs
qucstions and complaints about un
balanccd sccnarios. To handlc thc
rulcs qucstions, Avalon Hill uscd its
own gamc cxpcrts to answcr thcm
in thc Qucstion 8ox in Te General
Magazinc. Somc ol thcsc answcrs,
howcvcr, wcrc at odds with thc in
tcrprctations by thc pcoplc at svi
who originally workcd on thc gamc.
Tc two main points ol contcn
tion wcrc thc ability ol Command
Posts to pcrlorm thcir indircct firc
lunction whilc mountcd and thc
qucstion ol whcthcr a transport
unit with movcmcnt points lclt
ovcr altcr unloading its passcngcr
might continuc moving. Avalon
Hill’s answcrs wcrc that a cv may
not pcrlorm its indircct firc lunc
tion whilc mountcd in a transport
unit and that transport units may
continuc moving altcr dropping
off a passcngcr units il thcy havc
movcmcnt points lclt ovcr. svi’s
intcrprctations, howcvcr, wcrc that
a cv may cmploy its indircct firc
lunction whilc mountcd, providing
thc transport unit docs not movc on
thc turn that it is doing so, and that
transport units may not movc any
lurthcr altcr thcir passcngcrs havc
dismountcd.
svi argucd that sincc thcy wcrc
thc original dcsigncrs ol thc gamc,
thcy had thc solc right to answcr
any gamc qucstions, Avalon Hill
countcrcd by saying that sincc
thcy had bought thc gamc, rulc
dccisions wcrc thcirs to makc. Tis
causcd considcrablc rancor bctwccn
thc two companics, but is was soon
smoothcd ovcr whcn Avalon Hill
askcd svi to corrcct thc laults in thc
Panzcr8litz sccnarios, acknowlcdg
ing that thcy wcrc in a bcttcr posi
tion to fix what thcy had dcsigncd
in thc first placc.
Tcrc wcrc problcms in scvcn ol
thc twclvc sccnarios. !n lour ol thcm
(Situations ., µ, .c, and .:) thcrc
wcrc typo crrors and lour ol thc
sccnarios wcrc unbalanccd in lavor
ol onc sidc cithcr bccausc ol thc sct
up instructions (Situations ., ¸, and
6) or bccausc ol thc victory condi
tions (Situation .c). !n yct anothcr
sccnario, ncithcr sidc could win bc
causc both playcrs would incvitably
spcnd thc wholc gamc jockcying lor
position in middlc ol thc board and
waiting lor thc othcr sidc to attack,
thus thcrc was littlc or no combat
and thc gamc would usually cnd up
in a draw (Situation ,). Ðunnigan
lookcd at thc situations in qucstion
and camc up with a list ol corrcc
tions which hc scnt back to Avalon
Hill. For thc most part Avalon Hill
lollowcd thcsc but in a lcw ol thc
sccnarios addcd corrcctions ol thcir
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
,
own. Again this causcd somc lric
tion bctwccn thc two companics,
which only coolcd down whcn
Avalon Hill bought anothcr svi titlc,
Francc .µ¡c, which thcy publishcd
in thc spring ol .µ,:.
Ònc might wondcr how, il a com
pany spcnt an cntirc summcr dc
signing sccnarios lor a gamc, thcrc
would still bc flaws in thcm oncc
thc gamc was publishcd. To answcr
this, onc must rcalizc that playtcst
crs usually run a givcn sccnario to
scc il thc opcration that is bcing
simulatcd can indccd bc carricd
out during thc coursc ol thc scc
nario. Tcy arc not looking lor any
gamcwinning stratcgics. A casc in
point is Situation 6. !n thc original
vcrsion, thc Gcrmans had six mincs
and cight blocks. Ðuring thc play
tcsting, thc Gcrman playcrs would
usc thc blocks on thc road through
8oards . and : and usc thc mincs in
thcir final stand position on 8oard
:, which would bc thc appropriatc
usc ol mincs and blocks in a dc
laying action. Howcvcr, oncc thc
gamc was publishcd, gamcrs look
ing lor thc gamc winning stratcgy
in thc sccnario quickly lound that
thc mincs and blocks sct up in a linc
across a clcar arca on 8oard : bc
camc a linc that thc Russians sim
ply could not crack, and thus, thcy
had no chancc ol winning thc scc
nario. !n answcr to this Ðunnigan
rcmovcd thc blocks and mincs lrom
thc Gcrman ordcr ol battlc and, lo
and bchold, thc sccnario bccamc
onc ol thc most balanccd situations
in thc Panzcr8litz gamc.
!n Scptcmbcr ol .µ,. Avalon Hill
startcd its sccond print run ol Pan
zcr8litz, which includcd thc cor
rcctcd sccnario cards. ¡vcn thcn,
thcrc wcrc still a lcw crrors in two
Situations (. and ,) that croppcd up
within a lcw months but Avalon
Hill dcltly handlcd thcsc in thcir
Q&A 8oxcs in Te General maga
zinc. From thcrc Avalon Hill wcnt
on to scll ovcr :¸c,ccc copics ol thc
gamc in :· ycars.
THE OFFSHOOTS
Tnvvv wvvv :wo ovvsnoo:s
lrom thc Tactical Gamc ¸/Panzcr
8litz systcm that wcrc produccd by
svi. Tcir rclation to Panzcr8litz is
rathcr tcnuous in that thcy arc not
dircct cvolutionary dcsccndants ol
thc gamc but instcad, bcing sidc
vcnturcs, arc bascd on thc gcncral
thcmc.
Tc first onc was T¸¡, which was
publishcd in issuc :¸ ol Strategy &
Tactics in .µ,c. !t was a miniaturcs
gamc bascd morc on Tactical Gamc
¸ than Panzcr8litz. !t was crcatcd
by Arnold Hcndricks and was donc
to scttlc thc dcbatc on whcthcr tac
tical boardgamcs and miniaturcs
wcrc thc samc or not. Tc gamc had
a simplc sct ol rulcs, a singlc pagc
ol tablcs showing thc firing and
dclcnsc strcngths ol various units,
along with a combat rcsults tablc
(which was bascd on thc onc lrom
Tac¸), and two colorcd shccts ol
cutout papcr stands rcprcscnting
inlantry, antitank guns, mortars,
tanks, tank dcstroycrs, and hall
tracks. Tc stands wcrc lor playcrs
to try out thc systcm without hav
ing to buy miniaturcs. Tc gamc was
not popular as playcrs who wcrc al
rcady into miniaturcs thought ol it
as too basic and playcrs who wcrc
into boardgamcs rcally wcrc not
intcrcstcd in miniaturcs. !t is un
known il thc gamc causcd anyonc
to go lrom onc gamc lorm to thc
othcr. !t rcmains to this day a curi
osity piccc.
Tc othcr offshoot was Tactical
Gamc .c¸, Lost 8attlcs, which was
publishcd in issuc :· ol Strategy &
Tactics. Tis was an opcrational lcvcl
gamc and onc might wondcr what
rclationship it had with Panzcr8litz.
Vcll, Ðunnigan wantcd to takc
somc ol thc basic prcccpts ol Pan
zcr8litz and put thcm into an op
crational lcvcl gamc. Tis includcd
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
·
sccnarios lor spccific typcs ol opcr
ations, gcncric countcrs rcprcscnt
ing a typc ol battalion, rcgimcnt,
or brigadc, and rangcd combat, at
lcast lor thc ficld artillcry units. Tc
gamc includcd a mountcd coun
tcr shcct and a mapshcct with thc
sccnarios printcd on it. Tc gamc
might havc bccn succcsslul il somc
morc dcvclopmcntal work had bccn
donc on it, but alas this was not to
bc. Somc ol thc countcrs wcrc miss
ing thcir road movcmcnt numbcrs
and svi ncvcr bothcrcd to cxplain
what thcsc wcrc supposcd to bc. Tc
countcrs wcrc not numbcrcd, thus
making playbymail ncxt to im
possiblc. Tc diffcrcnt rulcs in thc
gamc did not mcsh wcll togcthcr
and two ol thc six sccnarios that thc
gamc was supposcd to havc wcrc
missing (thcsc wcrc latcr publishcd
in anothcr indcpcndcnt magazinc).
Ònc principal aspcct Ðunnigan
misscd was that, at thc tactical lcvcl,
gcncric countcrs rcprcscnting thc
diffcrcnt platoons and companics
work wcll lor building up highcr
lcvcl lormations, but at thc opcra
tional lcvcl thc battalions, rcgimcnts,
and brigadcs takc on thcir own in
dividual unit idcntitics. Vhilc thc
sccnarios only rcprcscntcd spccific
opcrational problcms and not any
spccific battlcs, playcrs lound thcm
dull and uncxciting. Tc gamc was a
lailurc but Ðunnigan did not sccm
to mind as it was only an cxpcri
mcnt that madc it into a magazinc.
Altcr this hc would only makc op
crational gamcs bascd on rcal bat
tlcs, not hypothctical situations.
THE AFTERMATH
P~xzvv8ii:z spawncd many cvo
lutionary lincs ol gamc dcvclopmcnt
in tactical armorcd warlarc. To dc
scribc thcm all would casily doublc
thc lcngth ol this articlc, so ! will
conccntratc on thc two main oncs
that thc gamc dircctly influcnccd in
thc immcdiatc ycars lollowing its
introduction.
SPI EVOLUTIONARY
BRANCH
A: :nv :i:v ov i:s vviv~sv, thcrc
wcrc many pcoplc at svi, cspccially
Ðunnigan, who thought that Pan
zcr8litz rcprcscntcd a lork in thc
road ol tactical armorcd warlarc
gamc dcvclopmcnt. Ònc path was to
continuc to dcvclop thc systcm that
spawncd Panzcr8litz. Tis was thc
primary dircction that svi was lol
lowing in .µ,.,:. Tc ncxt gamc in
thc dcvclopmcntal cvolution ol thc
systcm was Tactical Gamc ., which
was publishcd as Combat Com
mand in Strategy & Tactics No. ¸c.
Combat Command was svi’s vcr
sion ol Panzcr8litz lor thc Vcstcrn
Front. !t is casy to scc that thc sys
tcm had indccd cvolvcd whcn onc
looks at thc ncw rulcs hcrc. Tc
standard gamc turn had bccomc
morc complcx, cspccially in light ol
including phascs lor ovcrruns, closc
assaults, airstrikcs, and most impor
tantly, dclcnsivc firc. Ðclcnsivc firc
solvcd thc problcm ol cncmy units
moving lrccly in thcir turn without
a worry ol bcing fircd on. A lricndly
unit could dclcnsivcly firc il an cn
cmy unit attcmptcd to movc out ol
a hcx in its zonc ol control (thc six
hcxcs surrounding thc hcx that thc
lricndly unit was in) and it could
firc in thc dclcnsivc firc phasc at thc
cnd ol thc cncmy playcr’s turn. Tc
problcm was that a lricndly unit
could firc dclcnsivcly as many timcs
as thc conditions warrantcd it in a
singlc turn. Tus a unit could firc
at lour cncmy units cach that at
tcmptcd to movc around it through
thrcc hcxcs ol its zonc ol control lor
a total ol twclvc timcs during thc
cncmy movcmcnt phasc and thcn
firc a thirtccnth timc during thc
cnsuing dclcnsivc firc phasc, cach
timc at lull strcngth and at no dct
rimcnt to its offcnsivc firc in its own
playcr turn. Not surprisingly, this
madc dclcnsivc firc altogcthcr too
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
µ
powcrlul and thc playcr who was
thc dclcndcr in any givcn sccnario
almost always won.
Anothcr aspcct about Combat
Command was thc artillcry units lor
thc Amcricans. Tcy wcrc platoon
sizc, with corrcsponding lowcr at
tack strcngths lor thcm. Tis was a
grcat way to show thc sophistication
ol Amcrican artillcry as thcy could
now apply only as much fircpowcr
as nccdcd to bring an attack up to
odds, whcrcas thc Gcrmans would
havc to usc thcir wholc battcrysizc
picccs, rcgardlcss ol how many lac
tors wcrc nccdcd. Ðuc to a misun
dcrstanding bctwccn thc dcsigncr
and thc dcvclopcr, thc dcsigncr
thought a battcry ol Amcrican artil
lcry mcant thrcc platoons. Tc dc
vclopcr thought that cach platoon
was actually a battcry so that in thc
sccnarios, thc Amcricans only had a
third ol thc artillcry that thcy wcrc
cntitlcd to. Anothcr ncgativc aspcct
lor thc Amcricans was that whcn
thcir inlantry units wcrc dispcrscd
in combat, thcy would rcmain so lor
thc rcst ol thc gamc. Tis rcflcctcd
thc poor Amcrican inlantry tacti
cal abilitics during thc war, at lcast
whcn sct against thc Gcrmans, but
thc rcsult was to makc thc Amcri
can inlantry units oncshot dcals in
a sccnario. !t was also an inaccuratc
simulation, as not all Amcrican in
lantry units actcd so poorly in thc
war.
Anothcr good idca was to allow
thrcc platoons ol thc samc typc to
combinc into a companysizc unit
ol lcss stacking valuc. Unlortu
natcly, thc dclcnsc strcngth ol thc
companysizc countcr so lormcd
was only marginally strongcr than
a platoonsizc unit ol thc samc typc,
thc rcason bcing that il all thrcc pla
toons wcrc opcrating closc togcthcr
in company lormation, it would bc
casicr to dcstroy thcm than il thcy
wcrc sprcad out into thrcc smallcr
units. Tus companysizc units bc
camc primc targcts in dclcnsivc firc
situations, making thc dclcnding
playcr cvcn morc powcrlul.
8ut thc worst aspcct about Com
bat Command was its scalc, ,¸c mc
tcrs pcr hcx. !n thc planning stagcs,
thcrc was not cnough room on thc
mapshcct lor thc tcrrain bccausc
tablcs and playing aids had to bc
includcd as wcll. Accordingly, Ðun
nigan incrcascd thc scalc to gct thc
map to fit. Tis causcd somc wcird
situations that dcmandcd ncw rulcs
to covcr opposing units occupying
thc samc hcx and was rcally thc
biggcst turnoff in thc gamc. All in
all, Combat Command was anothcr
cxpcrimcnt which introduccd somc
ncw idcas into thc systcm but lailcd
as a simulation.
Not to bc discouragcd, Ðunnigan
continucd thc dcvclopmcnt ol thc
systcm into anothcr titlc, this timc
bcing Rcd Star/Vhitc Star, a mod
crn tactical armorcd warlarc gamc
that provcd to bc vcry popular,
many ol thc ncw idcas introduccd
into Combat Command camc to
lruition hcrc. Tc dcvastating dc
lcnsivc firc was toncd down, so that
a unit could only firc oncc during
an attackcr’s turn. Playcrs could still
cxchangc thcir platoon stacks lor
company countcrs (or battalion
sizc countcrs lor thc Russians), but
this timc thc dclcnsc strcngth ol
thcsc countcrs was commcnsuratc
with thcir sizc. Tc Amcrican artil
lcry was still in platoonsizc coun
tcrs but at lcast thcrc was thc right
amount ol it to accompany thc ma
ncuvcr units in qucstion (a battcry
supporting a battalion, a battalion
supporting a brigadc). Tc scalc ol
thc mapshcct was brought down to
¸cc mctcrs pcr hcx.
!l Rcd Star/Vhitc Star had a
lault, it was that thc Russians wcrc
portraycd as thcy wcrc in thc .µ6cs,
not in thc .µ,cs, which thc gamc
purportcd to simulatc. Tis was bc
causc thc data that Ðunnigan was
givcn by thc is Army was hcavily
laccd with misinlormation so thc
Russians could not find out what
wc rcally kncw about thcm through
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
.c
thc gamc (such was thc Fcdcral
govcrnmcnt’s Cold Var mcntal
ity ol thc timcs). Pcrhaps thc bcst
cxamplc ol this was that Russian
tank companics wcrc madc wcakcr
than is tank platoons. Vith such
a handicap, it was no wondcr that
Russians had a difficult, il not im
possiblc, task to win any sccnario.
!t was only through thc variant ar
ticlcs by sympathctic Army officcrs
that thc Russian tank countcrs wcrc
givcn thcir corrcct valucs, along
with somc othcr units, and now thc
gamc was prctty much balanccd.
8ut in thc cnd Ðunnigan had had
it with thc gamc systcm and ccascd
any lurthcr dcvclopmcnt ol it, so its
cvolutionary dcsign branch camc to
an cnd.
As mcntioncd bclorc, Ðunnigan
had dccidcd that Panzcr8litz was a
lork in thc road in tcrms ol dcsign
dcvclopmcnt and so in thc summcr
ol .µ,: dccidcd to takc thc othcr
branch and start with a ncw tactical
armor gamc systcm. Tis was thc
inlamous Simultancous Movcmcnt
Systcm. Vork on this systcm rcally
got startcd back whcn Highway 6.
was bcing dcvclopcd. !n that gamc,
as ! said abovc, playcrs would writc
down thcir planncd movcmcnts
and thcn cxccutc thcm simultanc
ously. Tis systcm was brought lor
ward into Statc Farm 6µ, with thc
writingdown ol commands lor
platoons bcing introduccd thcrc.
All ol this was sct asidc whcn Tacti
cal Gamc ¸ was bcing crcatcd. Ðun
nigan rcsurrcctcd thcm whcn hc
cndcd thc dcvclopmcnt ol thc othcr
tactical gamc systcm.
\cry littlc, il anything, was
brought lorward lrom Panzcr8litz
into this ncw systcm, cxccpt thc cx
pcrimcntal rulc ol !mpulsc Movc
mcnt & Rcturn Firc, which had
providcd thc original basis ol what
would cvcntually bccomc a lull si
multancous movcmcnt systcm.
8y .µ,¸ Ðunnigan had what hc
thought was thc pcrlcct tactical ar
mor gamc systcm and introduccd
it in thc gamcs Ðcscrt Var and
Kamplpanzcr, and latcr in lowcr
lcvcl tactical gamcs such as Tank,
Snipcr, and Patrol. Howcvcr, thc
rcaction to simultancous movcmcnt
was mixcd, thc biggcst complaint
bcing that onc could not play big
sccnarios with it. Tis lcd to a morc
modificd vcrsion callcd Simultanc
ousScqucntial Play Systcm, which
was introduccd in thc gamcs Panzcr
¡¡ and Mcch Var ,, and provcd to
bc Ðunnigan’s long sought answcr
(at lcast lor thc timc bcing).
AVALON HILL
EVOLUTIONARY BRANCH
Av:vv :~xixc :nv covvvc:ioxs
to thc sccnarios and pcriodic cntrics
in thc Qucstion 8ox in Te General
magazinc, thc pcoplc at Avalon Hill
dccidcd to sit back and lct Panzcr
8litz run its coursc, dcspitc plcas
lrom playcrs lor a Vcstcrn Front
vcrsion ol it. Sincc thcy kncw that
svi was alrcady working on thcir
Vcstcrn Front vcrsion (Combat
Command), it was lclt bcst to wait
and scc how it did whcn it was rc
lcascd. Altcr Combat Command
bccamc a confirmcd lailurc, Avalon
Hill dccidcd to commit to making
thcir vcrsion ol a Vcstcrn Front
stylc Panzcr8litz, which thcy would
cvcntually namc Panzcr Lcadcr.
Following thcir policy lor ncw titlcs
at thc timc, thcy wcnt to an out
sidc sourcc lor thc gamc. Spartan
!ntcrnational !nc., a national gam
ing club that Avalon Hill had closc
tics with, voluntccrcd to dcsign and
dcvclop it. Tis was in latc .µ,: or
carly .µ,¸. A publication datc ol thc
lall ol .µ,¡ was dccidcd on in ordcr
to givc Spartan plcnty ol timc to do
thc job right.
Spartan !ntcrnational appointcd
a committcc ol vctcran gamcrs to
dcsign and dcvclop Panzcr Lcadcr.
Vork procccdcd at a slow pacc as
thcrc was plcnty ol timc. Tc com
mittcc was closc to finishing it whcn
in August ol .µ,¡ Spartan !ntcrna
tional !nc. undcrwcnt a changc in
lcadcrship. Tc ncw rcgimc did not
support thc projcct – not that it
madc that much diffcrcncc, as most
ol thc mcmbcrs on thc committcc
lclt Spartan altcr thc changc. Tcy
did not likc thc ncw administra
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
..
tion and took thcir work with thcm.
Avalon Hill kcpt a wary cyc on
what was happcning at Spartan as
thc ncw rcgimc kcpt tclling Avalon
Hill that thc gamc was still in thc
works and that it would arrivc on
timc thc ncxt month. Howcvcr, in
Scptcmbcr ol .µ,¡, thrcc days bc
lorc thc gamc was duc lor publica
tion, Spartan announccd that thc
committcc lor thc gamc had bccn
disbandcd and that thcrc would bc
no Panzcr Lcadcr. !n truth thcrc
was no onc lclt on thc committcc
and thc ncw lcadcrship at Spartan
had got tircd ol maintaining thc fic
tion that thcrc was onc.
Randall Rccd at Avalon Hill saw
this coming (hc had sourccs insidc
Spartan), so hc was rcady lor thc
worstcasc sccnario. Vhcn hc got
thc ncws hc put his plan into action.
Tc story that hc dcsigncd and dc
vclopcd Panzcr Lcadcr in thrcc days,
howcvcr, is a myth. !n thrcc days hc
got thc first rough dralt ol rulcs
donc lor playtcsting by his tcam at
thc Hill and by !ntcrcst Group 8al
timorc, thc company’s chicl outsidc
playtcst group. Tc dcvclopmcnt ol
thc main componcnts ol thc gamc
was also startcd at this timc. !t took
ovcr a month to put Panzcr Lcadcr
togcthcr as thc publication datc was
pushcd back six wccks.
8ccausc ol thc short timc avail
ablc, Rccd thought that thc bcst op
tion was to dcvclop Panzcr Lcadcr
dircctly out ol Panzcr8litz. Tcrc
lorc any ncw rulcs wcrc to bc takcn
lrom variants which wcrc cithcr
publishcd in Te General magazinc
or othcr publications, or lrom arti
clcs on filc at Avalon Hill. Howcvcr,
thc ncw rulcs wcrc hcavily rcwordcd
to avoid accusations ol plagiarism.
Tis was wisc as most ol thc thcsc
rulcs had had thcir origins in thc
Norman 8cvcridgc scrics ol Pan
zcr8litz variant articlcs publishcd
in Te Spartan Journal. Tc countcrs
wcrc anothcr problcm as Rccd did
not want usc Ðunnigan’s systcm
in total in figuring out thc lactors
lor thc countcrs as hc did not agrcc
with all ol thc laccts ol thc original
Ðunnigan Systcm. Howcvcr, duc to
shortncss ol timc, it was lclt bcst to
lcavc thc Gcrman countcrs csscn
tially alonc (cxccpt lor somc minor
changcs in thc rangc lactors ol thc
inlantry and thc lour vchiclc tank
platoons) and conccntratc on thc
Allicd countcrs.
!t was hcrc that Rccd grcatly
addcd to thc Ðunnigan Systcm,
making it would cvcntually bccomc
in thc cnd. Tc sccnarios wcrc thc
last itcms to bc donc as thcy rcquircd
thc most playtcsting in a month’s
timc but thcrc wcrc still somc crrors
that wcrc misscd and would only bc
corrcctcd altcr thc gamc was pub
lishcd. Tc rulcs, which would sccm
to bc a patchwork job bascd on thc
!:~cix~:ivv S:v~:vcis:
His:ovv ov P~xzvv8ii:z
.:
abovc dcscription, actually workcd
togcthcr rathcr wcll. Panzcr Lcadcr
was rclcascd in thc latc lall ol .µ,¡,
first as a mail ordcr itcm, thcn as
a gcncral distribution itcm. !t did
wcll, with ovcr .cc,ccc copics sold.
8ccausc Panzcr8litz and Panzcr
Lcadcr wcrc closcly rclatcd, it was
casy to rcvcrsc cnginccr thc rulcs
ol Panzcr Lcadcr back into Pan
zcr8litz. Avalon Hill thcn scttlcd
back lor a lcw ycars bclorc starting
work on thc ncxt gamc in thc scrics,
Arab!sracli Vars.
!n .µ,6 it was dccidcd that thc
ncxt gamc would bc bascd in thc
dcscrt. Tis was logical as thc bat
tlcs in North Alrica wcrc a popular
subjcct. 8ut thc Arab!sracli wars
wcrc cvcn morc popular, givcn thc
rcccntly concludcd onc in .µ,¸, so
it was dccidcd to bring thc Panzcr
8litz/Panzcr Lcadcr systcm into
that thcatrc. 8y this timc Avalon
Hill was finally asscmbling its own
dcsign and dcvclopmcnt staff al
though thcy still uscd a numbcr
ol outsidc dcsigns. Tcy also had
plcnty ol morc timc to work on thc
gamc. Randall Rccd again hcadcd
up thc dcvclopmcnt tcam, along
with Scth Carus and Robcrt Ham
blcn, with Russcll \anc assisting in
sccnario dcvclopmcnt.
Arab!sracli Vars gamc brought
thc Panzcr8litz gamc systcm into
thc modcrn cra and many changcs
had to bc madc to show this. For
onc thing, all vchiclc units wcrc
slowcd down dramatically, having
thcir top spccd dividcd by fivc in
stcad ol thrcc to gct thc movcmcnt
lactors. Tis rcflcctcd thc lact that
vchiclcs, cspccially armorcd oncs, al
most ncvcr movc at thcir top spccd
cxccpt to gct out ol dangcr, and so
on thc avcragc, movc at a slowcr top
spccd that is casicr on thc cngincs.
Anothcr changc was that artillcry
units now had an attack lactor that
would bc applicd to cach unit in a
targct hcx, rcgardlcss ol how many
units wcrc thcrc. Tcrc wcrc othcr
changcs, too many to list hcrc, but
nccdlcss to say, thc Panzcr8litz
systcm finally rcachcd its pinnaclc
ol dcvclopmcnt in thc Arab!sracli
Vars gamc. Howcvcr, whcn it was
rclcascd in thc lall ol .µ,,, it mct
with a lukcwarm rcsponsc. !t sccms
that playcrs wcrc gctting borcd with
thc Panzcr8litz systcm and wcrc
gctting cxcitcd about a ncw tacti
cal systcm that Avalon Hill had
also rclcascd also that ycar: Squad
Lcadcr. So Avalon Hill cndcd its
cvolutionary linc ol dcvclopmcnt ol
thc Panzcr8litz systcm hcrc.