Home Forums WWII German Inf vs. Russian Infantry Reply To: German Inf vs. Russian Infantry

Ivan Sorensen

Opinion question: In your wargaming opinion, how should a German infantry squad of ’42 or ’43 differ from a Russian squad of ’44 or ’45? Which would be more skilled tactically? Which would be more likely to advance in the face of adversity? Which would be more likely to survive a difficult encounter (all things being equal)? Which would have better leadership? Which would exhibit greater heroism? Of course if you would care to share your reasoning that would be great as well?

I’ve slowly been coming around to the “A soldier is a soldier” view of things, especially in skirmish gaming.

The problem is that both armies exhibit a wide range of performance: A battle hardened squad will outperform a squad with no experience at all regardless of nationality. Likewise, battles tend to come down to all the things going on around the squad.


In general, Germans can rely on very good squad leaders through most of the war, particularly since the roles were a bit different. While the Red Army didn’t crush initiative quite in the way gamers like to imagine, in the end, the squad leader was there to direct the squad to where it was supposed to be, whereas the German leader was expected and encouraged to show greater initiative.

In that vein, it seems German squads were a bit more likely to disperse out into two teams, while Soviet squads tended to stick closer together.

Depending on rules used, give the Germans some sort of bonus to initiative or their ability to act unexpectedly. For simpler games, just give them a small bonus to morale/leadership.

As far as heroism, that’s purely individual. 1 in 6 chance per game of some one pulling off a heroic action.

Advancing in the face of adversity? Both armies were largely offensive-minded, so I think this would be quite equal.

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