Over the last few years there have been a massive amount of different miniature rules released covering the period now widely known as Weird World War II (WWWII). Some come as board games, some boxed with mini's, some as rulesets supported by a specific miniatures range and a precious few as a rulebook allowing you to use minis from any of the many manufacturers out there. Wessex Games "Geheimkrieg" falls into the latter category. The ruleset, written by Steve Blease and Matthew Hartley, might seem somewhat late to the party but they were actually written some time ago. Steve was originally waiting for full miniatures support before releasing the game but now, with focus on a few other of his games at the moment (most notably Wessex Games excellent VSF series) he decided to go ahead and release the rules to allow people to play the game using any miniatures and I for one am glad he has.
Geheimkrieg is split into two main sections, one is the background section which tells us how the world differs to our own and the other is, of course, the rules section. I found both to set themselves apart from other WWWII games for a few reasons. I'll start off, as the book does, with the background section.
Wessex Games take on WWWII differs from many of the others out there being very closely tied to reality, focusing on extrapolations of actual real world events and not altering the flow of technology or history to modern day. The background in Geheimkrieg is extremely detailed, consisting of a series of reports on how each of the major powers 'special investigation' departments experienced, and in some cases manipulated, the stranger events witnessed in the run up to, during and after World War II. I did a bit of research and was surprsised at how many of them actually happened; For example I had not previously read about the German expedition to New Swabia in the Antarctic just before the war began or of the details of Nikolai Tesla's death alone in his hotel room in New York in 1943. Both did actually happen and Geheimkrieg's background expands on them in such a seemingly factual and accurate manner that the extra 'weird war' details do not sound too fantastical. He also remains intentionally vague on some specific points, as one would find in a 'real' report of this nature where no one agency would have all the facts, allowing gamers to interpret the finer details into the scenarios or styles of gaming they prefer to play.
[5 of 5 Stars!]