Festung Breslau - February 13, 1945 - May 06, 1945

Eastern Front By: arturopala - Last update: 07/25/2014
Axis Player: Allied Player:
x4 x6 x6 x8
    first You play first

Historical Background:
The Battle of Breslau, also known as the Siege of Breslau, was a three month long siege of the city of Breslau in Lower Silesia, Germany (now Wroclaw, Poland), lasting to the end of World War II in Europe (from 13 February to 6 May 1945).

In August 1944, Hitler declared the city of Breslau (inhabited at the time by more than one million people) to be a fortress (Festung), ordering that it be defended at all costs. On 19 January 1945, majority of the civilian population was forced to leave, many thousands died in the bitter cold of the makeshift evacuation. Late in January, the German Army, survivors from the eastern front and auxiliary units, and convalescents, aided by the volunteers, youth and slave laborers, turned in a hurry the city into a military fortress; a large area of the city center was demolished. SS regiment "Besslein" (which included volunteers from France and Holland) was sent to reinforce the garrison. Even approximate estimates vary greatly concerning the number of German troops trapped in Breslau, some sources claim that there were as many as 150,000 defenders. On 15 February, the Luftwaffe started a permanent airlift to aid the besieged garrison, and for 76 days, until 1 May, made more than 2000 sorties delivering 1500 tons of supplies, munition and food, taking back the wounded and sick. The city was besieged as part of the Lower Silesian Offensive Operation (8-24 February 1945) on 13 February by the 6th Army of the 1st Ukrainian Front commanded by Marshal Ivan Konyew, and the encirclement of Breslau was completed the following day. The 1st Ukrainian Front forces besieged the city with the 22nd and 74th Rifle Corps, and the 77th Fortified Region, as well as other smaller units.

The Siege of Breslau consisted of destructive house-to-house street fighting. During the siege, both sides resorted to setting entire districts of the city on fire. After the Soviet capture of the Gandauer airfield, the Wehrmacht destroyed many houses and three churches to build a provisional airstrip 200 to 400 meters wide and two kilometers long. The city was also bombarded to ruin by artillery of the Soviet 6th Army, as well as the Soviet 2nd Air Army and the Soviet 18th Air Army. On 6 May, after an 82-day fierce defense and only one day before the unconditional surrender of Germany in World War II, General Niehoff relinquished Festung Breslau to the Soviets, this was the last major city in Germany to surrender. In the aftermath of the war Breslau was transferred to Poland and renamed Wroclaw.

The stage is set, the battle lines are drawn, and you are in command. The rest is history.

Axis Player
Take 4 Command cards.

Russian Player
Take 6 Command cards.
You move first.

Conditions of Victory:
8 Medals for Russian, 6 medals for Axis.

4 targets for Russian side count as a one temporary Objective Medal: the Main Rail Station (Bahnhof), the Linke-Hoffmann factory, the Main Market (Ring) and the Cathedral (Dom).
The Hydro-power plant (Kraftwerk) count as a two temporary Objective Medals for the Russian side.
Place an Objective Medal(s) on each of these hexes.

Special Rules:
The German Home Guard (Volkssturm) units have 3 figures at start.
The Axis Special Forces (SS Regiment "Besslein") units have 4 figures.
Special Weapon Asset rules are in effect for the two German units equipped with Anti-Tank weapons (Panzerfaust).
The German player lays out the Minefields (Terrain 29 - Minefields).
The Russian Special Forces infantry are Engineers and Elite units.
Place a Special Force badge in the same hex with these units to distinguish them from the other units.
An Railway embankment hex has the same effect as a hill.

Scenario Bibliography:

Please note that this scenario was not approved by Richard Borg or Days of Wonder, so you have to check yourself about playability, potential gaming issues, etc.

Set-up Order