Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Eastern Front

The trenches at Stalingrad.

The more I talk to people, the more I realize that the average person in America doesn't even know that a war was fought on the other side of Germany.  At least, that's the impression that I get.  Also, that the Soviets did the bulk of the fighting (and winning) against Nazi Germany also seems to be something that people here just don't think about.  Now, I'm not saying our grandparents didn't fight a deadly enemy for our country - just that more fighting was done on the Ostfront.  I'd even go as far as to call it "the bulk of the war in Europe".

Anyone interested in research on the subject can check out the awesome articles on Wikipedia, starting with the basics for the Great Patriotic War.  It's a fascinating subject, full of tales of heroism and horror.  There are numerous books written on the subject, of course, but it seems that in the U.S. you pretty much have to go out of your way to learn about this.

Of course, we'll be running various scenarios as we meander our way across the war in the coming years.  As everyone knows, right now we're fighting over Moscow, and you'd be surprised at how many folk don't know how to take it when we say we're not actually fighting IN said city.  All of a sudden, I wanted to make folks aware about the horrendous struggle between Germany and Russia.

Last year, when we were going through possible theatres to get the club revved up for Flames of War, I really pushed the Eastern Front.  Right away I was blown away by how much just isn't talked about.  Months later, I've just ordered my T-34 company and I run across the trailer below.

Now, the Wargate isn't about video games, and we're not going to start covering them.  I bring it up here because it's sort of on the issue, in a roundabout way.  I don't know of a single video game that's ever come from this angle, though they probably exist - in Russia.

I've been following the production of this particular game closely as it's relevant to my interests.  I must say that this isn't just exciting to me, but I find it touching in a strange way.  It might be crass to some, but I don't know if a better tribute could be made to the sacrifices made on the Ostfront. 

If nothing else, gamer d00dZ will be aware that something happened way back in the '40's and a lot of folks died.  That's if they are interested enough to check out this game, they might could learn a little something more about history.  The Company of Heroes title was very popular, so you never know.

The Cold War is over.  Being a Russian sympathizer (as I've been called) doesn't get you thrown in jail anymore...does it?