Stalingrad Enemy at the Gates

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    Hello all!

    I am a new Bolt Action Player. I have the Starter Set and have read into the rules. So far all is fine. I also have bought the Stalingrad Deluxe Battle Set. Here i have a question and two comments:

    1. In the battle set every side has a mortar team and a mmg team. There are also two Sandbag emplacements. Are these for the mortar or for the mmg? And is it so that the emplacements stay at the same place if the team moves?


    2. I like the models, but in the Stalingrad battle set it says that the German winter infantry should not get assault guns, panzerfaust and GW43 because these weapons don’t got use in Stalingrad. The problem is, that the remaining rifles arent enough for the whole infantry models, even if the NCO get an SMG and every team get a LMG.  So i have to use some of the GW43.

    3. I also bought the Stalingrad campaign book and as far as i can see, there is no list where the Marder III will be used.


    Did i understood everytrhing correctly?


    Thanks for answering and sorry for my bad english. I am from germany.





    1.  You can use the emplacements as terrain peices or as basing materials… which ever takes your fancy.. there is no right or wrong answer

    2. Yeah you dont always get enough of the weapons you want in the boxs… for example the Soviet Infantry box doesnt give enough rifles… so if you can either use them then count as normal rifles when playing or model some guys up as runners / observers etc for the officer team etc… there is no right or wrong way of what to do – just what you are happy with!  (personally I dont use any of the soviet automatic rifles.. but I do have several unarmed guys as observers )

    3. There is alway the generic platoon list, you dont have to use the theater lists… in fact some tournaments dont allow them to be run…



    ps your English is miles better than my German!  & I lived (well servered) in the monchengladbach (Krefeld & Bruggen) area for 3 years


    Thanks for the answers 🙂


    As i only play personal for fun and have no ambition to play at tournaments i think i can do it whatever i want 🙂


    But you frightened me a bit. I have not controlled if the weapons for soviets are enough 😉 But i will build them soon….

    Nigel Heather

    Sandbags – I’d say that you can use them for the mortar or MMG or both – I presume that there is a points cost for them – but I’d say that if you relocate during the battle you can’t take the sandbags with you.  I would say that they are most likely to be used by the defender and put in position at the start of the game and they remain there throughout.


    The Panzerfaust, GW43 and the StG44 – didn’t really come out until 1943, after Stalingrad, so no surprise that they are not allowed.


    Marder III – was definitely around at the time and used around Stalingrad – might not be in any of pre-written scenarios but no reason why you can’t use it.

    Shortage of weapons – yes happens all the time.  I have Russians and Germans (Summer though) for early war gaming and I find the Russian weapon sprues are particularly short of rifles.  You can buy extra sprues but they are relative expensive, and annoying because you are mostly buying more of what you don’t need.  In fact I had some extra infantry and weapon sprues in my basket and found it was only a little more to buy a complete infantry box, so that is what I did.

    You English is perfectly good.






    soviets are easier because even in 1941 they have whole units armed with SMGs… its just that if you wanted to make 3 units of rifle armed guys from a box you cant….(oh dear what I shame out of 2 boxes of guys I now have 2 units of SMG guys)


    But yeah..with Bolt Action take the rules as a starting point and common ground for playing people.. in your own club you can easily update the rules, like sub a maurder III in for StugIII

    Nigel Heather

    I didn’t realise that they had SMG units so early on.

    Personally, I wanted mostly rifles, but with such big squads (up to 12 in Bolt Action I recall off the top of my head, though all my historical research has found the limit to be 11) even the free green squad of riflemen takes a big chunk out of the available rifles.

    I think throughout the whole war, infantry squads were issued with rifles, with an increasing small number of SMGs for NCOs and my experienced soldiers.

    I think the SMG teams were specific chosen units, not generic infantry units.  And I imagine the real value is urban fighting and assaults, the firepower is great but the accuracy and range less so.  So in a city they are great, shooting at an enemy across a field, not so good.

    I bought a second set of infantry primarily to get me some more weapons plus a few extra figures, but it also meant that I was able to create an SMG team and create alternative squad commanders and NCOs so I can have them rifle armed or SMG armed.

    Interesting picture of rifle squads through the ages






    Yeah it was one of the changes to the red army after the winter war with Finland in 39/40 (the formation of SMG equipped companies…. cant remember if they were their own battalions or just a company within the normal battalion structure… its also where the first tank rider units came from.. but thats another topic :p)


    The soviet book does expaline where the 12 man squad size comes from…off top of my head its aprox an 8 month window in about 42 when they are re organizing after the blitzkreig

    invisible officer

    Marder III is a small designation problem.   It was in 42 the  Panzerjäger 38 (Sd. Kfz. 139) with 7,62 cm . Only 27 Feb. 1944 it became Marder III by order of Hitler. Until October 42   344 are made. 176 of them on 38 G base.


    In November 42 building was changed to the “true”  Marder III with German 7,5 cm. In that month the base was changed to H version.


    So the “Marder” used at Stalingrad campaign are 7,62 cm armed Panzerjäger 38.  Found under that designation in contemporay German sources.


    The Soviets used many SMG following the enormous material losses in 41. Production of a SMG was much faster than that of a rifle. The Soviets made exelent rifle barrels and stocks, but that took time.

    So it was no tactical idea at first, only later the all automatic unit was found to be good as escort for tanks.




    The Faustpatrone 30 was tested in small numbers at the front in late 1942 . The head was different to Panzerfaust 30.


    I saw pics of Faustpatrone 30 in use labeled Stalingrad. But that is a BIG  ????


    About the Soviet infanty (not just SMG) companies….lets be honest with something like 8 rifle battalion org changes (including 3 guard changes) between April 41 and  May 45  its no wonder people get confused as to when and how they where formed :p

    I mean it reads like some units could well have ‘skipped’ an org change because it happened so fast :p



    You could use Sigs 33, pnz4, nebelwafer,  open blitz, famo’s, Steyr,

    We did it here….

    But you can keep it smaller…

    Jim Ripley

    A cheap way to get an extra weapon sprue , is to buy the plastic Warlord KV I/II kit  ( or the JS II ) as it comes with a sprue of Soviet troops and weapons to use as tank riders . If you don’t want the figures , sell them or convert them  to make Artillery crews

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