Great War Commander

The Chase of the Bismarck - Operation Rheinübung 1941

The Chase of the Bismarck - Operation Rheinübung 1941
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Price: 119.00 €

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Publisher: VUCA Simulations

Reference: VUC-Bismarck

Format: box

Period: World War II

Language:

1 item in stock


More infos

The focus of the game is the breakout of Bismarck and Prinz Eugen into the Atlantic and their hunt for convoys. Both players have their own operational map and the German player tries to get his ships into the Atlantic unnoticed to sink enemy ships and earn victory points. 

One decision that must be made is the speed of the breakout. If the ships are running at full speed, the fuel supply will quickly run out. On the other hand, there is less danger of being discovered. It is also important where the German tankers are placed to make the best strategic use of them. Of course, they also run the risk of being spotted and destroyed. Another challenge is to reach a safe harbor after a successful hunt.


The Allied player must try to spot the German ships, shadow them and deploy enough to sink them. If the ships are running at full speed, the fuel supply will quickly run out. 

On the other hand, there is less danger of being discovered. It is also important where the German tankers are placed to make the best strategic use of them. Of course, they also run the risk of being spotted and destroyed. Another challenge is to reach a safe harbor after a successful hunt.

The Allied player must try to spot the German ships, shadow them, and apply enough combat power to sink them. For this purpose, he also has a number of air force units at his disposal, which, however, are only really effective in good visibility conditions.


Once enemy units have been spotted, they can be shadowed by your own ships if they are nearby. However, evasive maneuvers or a change in visibility conditions can cause the contact to be lost again.

As soon as ships of both parties are in a hex and combat is triggered, the game pauses on the operational map and both players turn to tactical naval combat. This takes place on the tactical combat map and the tactical counters of the participating ships are placed there.


The combat system itself focuses on the most important factors and is therefore not confusingly complex. Nevertheless, I think that the most important factors have been taken into account in order to achieve realistic results here on the one hand, but also to allow for surprises on the other. Of course, any other tactical game system can also be used to determine the outcome of a Naval combat at the discretion. Any combat effects get tracked on the corresponding ship cards with wooden blocks.



To increase replayability, ships that did not participate in the historical enterprise are included. These can optionally be "purchased" for a set victory point penalty before the game begins.


The Chase of the Bismarck is a game that can be played perfectly remotely, even simply over the phone.

The Chase of the Bismarck is played in turns, each representing nearly five hours of real time. In each turn, both players secretly move any or all ships and air units under their command on their own search board.

Each player may then call out zones in which he has enough search factors to locate his opponent's ships. This is the “operational part of the game”.

If opposing ships are discovered to be in the same zone, they may proceed to combat on the Battle Board. This is the “tactical part of the game”.

The game ends if Bismarck is sunk, arrives at a friendly port or the last turn of the game (evening of May 29th) has been played.

The game components

The following components are included in the game:

  • Two operational Search Boards
  • One Battle Board
  • About 300 counters
  • 45 Ship Cards
  • Several Player Aid Cards
  • Two Player Screens
  • Several blue and red wooden blocks
  • Optional Hit Record Pad
  • Rulebook
  • Two ten-sided dice 

Additional information

  • Designers: J. Greene & P. Gebhardt.
  • Developer & Art Director: P. Gebhardt.
  • Graphic Artist: P. Bazerque.
  • Rules Editor: J. Bruncken.