Review: Red Star, White Lights

Rating: 4 stars

Red Star, White Lights is a new scenario book for modern warfare, written by Jason Weiser.

During the Cold War, most eyes looked to Germany as the place where a potential land battle between the forces of NATO and the Warsaw Pact would take place. This book highlights Scandinavia as another potential flashpoint, and gives us eleven scenarios to highlight the conflict possibilities in the frozen north.

As well as battling their opponents, armies in this theatre would be taking on the elements, so the book starts by discussing the issues that troops would have to face with extreme cold, soft ground, deep snow, avalanches and the physical and physiological effects that artic light levels would have.

The scenarios have been designed with 15mm and 20mm figures in mind – smaller or larger scale miniatures will probably require some changes to the size of the maps.

Red Star White Lights coverAll the scenarios play out on a map between 4’ x 4’ and 6’ x 4’, and forces vary in size from a couple of squads per side, to a full platoon with armoured support. Most of the scenarios have Soviet forces facing troops from Norway, Sweden or Finland, though both British and American troops turn up in a couple of games. Organisation lists for these armies, circa 1985, can be found at the back of the book.

The scenarios cover a wide range of actions, from the storming of a radar station or an amphibious assault on a village through to Special Forces actions to destroy a supply dump, or even capture a member of the Swedish Royal family.

The scenarios are designed to be rules independent, although they are presented in a similar style to what we’ve seen from Force-on-Force. Each scenario has clear objectives and victory points, and are thus easily adapted to whatever modern rules you are playing.

The book finishes with a discussion of where you can obtain suitable 15mm or 20mm models for play, and has a reasonably large bibliography of books and online resources where you can find further details of material presented.

Red Star, White Lights provides an interesting alternative setting for those gamers wanting to fight a series of ‘what-if’ World War III battles, and would give several months of entertainment especially if you were building your forces from scratch. It is the first of what will (hopefully) be several scenario books from Ram Company Games, covering several lesser known conflict areas of a possible World War III. I would highly recommend this for any fan of modern gaming.

Red Star, White Lights can be purchased from the Armies Army website for £6.99, or from Wargames Vault for $9.99

Review disclaimer: A review copy of these rules were provided by the publisher

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