Breitenfeld was published in Strategy & Tactics
#55 by SPI
, in March 1976. Designed by JA Nelson
. The game is subtitled Triumph of the Swedish System, 17 September 1631
. The historical article Thirty Years War: The Dawn of Modern Warfare, 1618-1648
was written by Albert A. Nofi
This game was a real sleeper. Once or twice a year, the SPI staff ignore their Feedback and publish something they want to play instead of all those insipid WWII tank games. To everyone's surprise, the battle between King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden and the Imperial army of Saxony under the command of Tilly caught on. In fact, its combat system inspired an entire 30 Years War Quadrigame.
When I opened this game, I was struck by the colors. The Swedes had large dark blue counters, and the Imperials had blood red chits. The map was sparce, with a hill being the most important terrain.
Until this time, almost all S&T games had featured "locking ZOCs." Once a piece moved next to an enemy, they were locked together until one or the other was eliminated. Breitenfeld introduced quite fluid ZOCs. You could move through them, if you had the movement points.
The game system also featured leader units and the all-important artillery. In my opinion, proper use of the Sweedish cannon in a historical fashion can ensure a win for King Gustav.