For Whom The Bell Tolls (FWTBT)
A game in the Europa series that covers the 1936-39 Spanish Civil War, plus provides the Grand Europa material for WWII Spain and Portugal (including a separate game covering a hypothetical attack on Spain/Gibraltar by the Axis). Designed by John Gee and Jeff Millefoglie.
For Whom The Bell Tolls is a very much updated and expanded version of ¡No Pasaran!, a scenario for the Spain and Portugal Europa series module from 1984 that was published in The Grenadier No. 27 (1986).
First Edition Game Components (1995)
- 1680 die-cut counters
- One and one half maps
- Rules Book
- 3 OB Books
- Chart Set
Second Edition (2004)
Complete game, with all the original components of the original color box version except that it comes in a plain white box instead of the sold-out original yellow and black box. Includes a bonus pack of three sheets of game play markers not in the original game.
Game Report No 1: This epic write-up from a full-length game of For Whom the Bell Tolls was graciously shared with us by Friedrich H. Helfferich, who spent the better part of 1999 playing the Insurgets against the Loyalist player Elias Nordling.
Game Report No 2: This report from a full-length solitary campaign game of For Whom The Bell Tolls was written by Davis Stokes in 2001.
Invasion of Spain: Ralph Sunley tested the scenario "Invasion of Spain" included in For Whom the Bell Tolls. The solitary game took place in 2007.
Game Report No. 4: A game report by Ken Newall, who tried the variable start to the revolution in a solitaire game, played in 2017 and notable for lots of pictures documenting every turn.
Game Report No. 5: A very promising game report with excellent and extensive reports by Brian O'Connell from 2014. Unfortunately, Brian only found the time to write up the reports covering 1936, even though the game lasted until 1939.
Game Report No. 6: One of the earliest game reports of FWTBT, played and written up by Wolf Broszies in 1998/99.
"A First Look: For Whom the Bell Tolls", ETO 52
The Europa Magazine
“Assaulting the Rock: Operation Felix.” By Peter Robbins and Rich Velay. TEM 62.
For Whom the Bell Tolls Counter Sheets. TEM 42.
“For Whom the Bell Tolls: A Civil War game report.” By Fred Helfferich. TEM 62.
“For Whom the Bell Tolls Design Update.” By Jeff Millefoglie. TEM 11.
“For Whom the Bell Tolls Errata Sheet - June 1, 1996.” TEM 47.
“For Whom the Bell Tolls Q&A.” By Rich Velay. TEM 62.
“Optional beginning to the Spanish Civil War.” By Fred Helfferich. TEM 63.
“Replacement and Production Charts.” By Bob Fulton. TEM 62.
“Still Tolls the Bell.” By Friedrich Helfferich and Elias Nordling. TEM 68.
“The Spanish Loyalist Army.” By John Gee. TEM 47.
Line of Communications
"Spanish Torch" by Ralph Sunley, LOC #3
The Europa Series
- A Winter War (AWW)
- Balkan Front (BF)
- Case White (CW)
- Drang nach Osten (DNO)
- Fall of France (FOF)
- Fire in the East (FitE)
- First to Fight (FTF)
- For Whom The Bell Tolls (FWTBT)
- Marita-Merkur (MM)
- Narvik (NV)
- Scorched Earth (SE)
- Second Front (SF)
- Spain and Portugal (SP)
- Storm over Scandinavia (SOS)
- The Collector´s Edition
- The Near East (TNE)
- The Urals (TU)
- Their Finest Hour (TFH)
- Torch (TO)
- Total War (TW)
- Unentschieden (UN)
- War In The Desert (WitD)
- Western Desert (WD)
Kenn Newall prepared these custom made Game Sheets for use with FWtBT and graciously shared them with the General Staff (MS Word):
FWTBT Custom Chart List (16 downloads)
FWtBT Custom Counter KEY Chart (21 downloads)
FWtBT Custom Countersheet (20 downloads)
FWTBT Custom Factory Chart (0 downloads)
FWTBT Custom Game Asistant Charts (14 downloads)
FWTBT Custom Point City Ownership Chart (16 downloads)
FWTBT Custom Replacement City Chart (0 downloads)
Spelling of Alcazarquivir
Insurgent OB says Alcazarquivar (23A:4131). Map says Alcazarquivir. Which is right?
[AEG, Developer, 1998]
Insurgent OB – Conditional Reinforcements, Italian Naval Intervention
If the Insurgent player decides to use the Italian naval forces for on-map operations, must all 3x 6-pt TFs be used the same turn? Or is he allowed to use each TF in different turns? (Or even use them on their reduced sides, in order to have smaller but more TFs with which to “bother” the Loyalist player?)
He must use them all in the same turn. Note that the OB entry says “3x 6-pt Task Forces…” not “up to 3x 6-pt Task Forces”. But note that while the 3 naval units are released at the same time per the OB, they don’t have to operate together while on the map.
[DPS, Rules Judge, 05-Feb-05]
Spelling of Sanlucar de Barrameda.
Insurgent OB says Sanlucar de Barramdeda (23A:3328). Map says Sanlucar de Barrameda. Which is right?
Sanlucar de Barrameda.
[AEG, Developer, 1998]
Insurgent OB – Conditional Reinforcements
The two Italian landing craft are never released if there is no Loyalist landing on Mallorca. Is this an oversight?
That’s how it was designed. As an option, you could release these units when you first call up the Italian Navy for on map use, and then keep the units from then on. Note that you couldn’t have more than two LCs present, in any case.
[AEG, Developer, 1998]
Narrow Straits Definition
Do narrow straits only occur where there is a narrow straits crossing symbol on the map, or where geography indicates it might exist?
For example, in SW France there is a narrow strait between 1223&1224, however, it seems such a strait would exist between each hexside going south all the way to 1524-1525, though there are no markers. Similarly, there is a marker between 0822-0923 but not between 0221-0322. I have to think this is intentional, is it?
Narrow straits exist (in game terms) only across those sea hexsides where a printed narrow straits crossing symbol is shown.
Yes, this is intentional. Note: In general (there are exceptions), a narrow straits crossing symbol is shown at each all-sea hexside which is 3 miles or less in width (this is close to the normal flood width of a non-channel-stabilized major river.) An all-sea hexside 3-5 miles across is occasionally given the narrow straits symbol anyway if it meets either of the following criteria:
1) designating the hexside as a narrow straits would normally “close” the mouth of a bay or estuary to enemy naval movement (this is because the rules prohibit enemy naval units from moving through a narrow straits unless they own both sides of the straits — this prohibition reflects in game terms the decided lack of enthusiasm naval commanders had for entering enclosed bodies of water controlled by the enemy), or 2) the hexside normally had a civilian ferry running across it and all the other all-sea hexsides near it were much wider than 5 miles across; usually when an exception is made cases #1 and #2 both apply.
Using the same example you cite above (the Gironde River estuary on map 33 from FWtBT) as illustrative of this criteria:
- A) At the “mouth” of the Gironde (from Royan in hex 33:1223 to Pointe de Grave in hex 33:1224), the width of the estuary is about 3.5 miles across. The map shows a narrow straits symbol here even though the strait is more than 3 miles across because placing a straits symbol here “closes” the Gironde to enemy naval movement and because there was normal civilian ferry service of long standing across this section of the estuary. (Note: In reality, the tip of the peninsula in hex 1224 should reach right up to the point where hexes 1124, 1223, and 1224 meet, but this was deliberately foreshortened on the game map so as to make it easier for players to “visualize” that naval movement from 1224 to 1324 is possible when they are allowed to move through the 1223/1224 narrow straits.)
- B) The main portion of the lower Gironde estuary between the mouth and Paulliac (that is the 1223/1324, 1324/1323, and 1324/1423 hexsides) widens dramatically to an average width of 7-8 miles. This section of the estuary, therefore, was NOT given narrow straits symbols.
- C) The middle section of the Gironde estuary (a roughly 6 mile stretch from Pauillac on the west bank south to Blaye on the east bank narrows to about 2.5 miles across, with the effective width even less due to several islands in mid-channel). This section (the 33:1423/1424 hexside), therefore, WAS given a narrow straits symbol.
- D) The upper Gironde estuary south of Blaye widens again to a 3-4 mile width — also there are no islands in this stretch. This section (the 33:1424/1524 hexside), therefore, was NOT given a narrow straits symbol.
- E) The uppermost section of the estuary (the 33:1524/1525 hexside) narrows again to 1.5-2.5 miles across (with islands in mid-channel again). And looking at this again now, I cannot see why this section should not have a narrow straits hexside.
[AEG, Developer, 29-Mar-04]
Insurgent OB – Com RPs
Why introduce the concept of “Com” RPs when Italian and German RPs must be tracked separately anyway?
“Com” does not refer to “combined Italian and German”, it refers to “combined infantry and artillery”. Interventionist units are the only ones which do not require separate handling of inf and art RPs.
[AEG, Developer, 1998]
Counters used neither in the Europa OB nor in the Civil War scenarios
There seems to be several counters used neither in the Europa OB nor in the Civil War scenarios: Insurgent/Spanish:
1x 3-8 Cav X Mar (Col)
1x 3-6* Inf III Tdl (Col)
1x 1-8 Lt Arm II S
2x 0-1-6 Inf II I/TdI, IV/TdI (Col)
Players may substitute the 3-8 Cav X Mar. (Col) for the two 2-1-8 Cav III 1E. and 2O. (Col) at any time during WWII scenarios. The two 0-1-6 Inf II I/Tdl and IV/Tdl (Col) should be Spanish Neutrality Watch units on the islands of Gran Canaria and Tenerife, respectively. Players may substitute the 3-6* Inf III Tdl (Col) for the 2-6* Inf III Tdl (Col) and the two 0-1-6 Inf II I/Tdl, IV/Tdl (Col). The 1-8 Lt Arm II S. should have been deleted from the countermix.
[AEG, Developer, 1998]
Loyalist OB – Calculating ARP Rates
For the purposes of calculating ARPs on the first turn of each air cycle, are air units in the France Holding Box behind a Closed French Border considered to be “on the map”?
No, the OB’s specify that “Air units in play include all those on the map and in the aborted or eliminated boxes of the air chart.” Whether the French border is opened or closed, the France Holding box meets neither of these requirements. For ARP purposes, don’t count any Loyalist air units in the France holding box.
[DPS, Rules Judge, 27-Jan-05 and 13-Jun-05]
Counters that are not used in any of the Scenarios
It appears there are a number of counters that are not used in any of the scenarios included in the game.
A: Yes, there are a few and here is a list:
1x 3-8 Cav X Mar(Col)
1x 3-6* Inf III TdI(Col)
2x 0-1-6 Inf II I/TdI,IV/TdI(Col)
1x 1-8 Lt Arm II S
1x N.52 1F1 0/4
1x Bre.19 0A1 1/8
1x Vild 1A1 1/F/9
1x A-101 1A1 1/9
1x 7-6 Inf XX Pol(SS)
Note that the Nationalist air units above may come into play when using 44H. Similarly, use the Loyalist A-101 in place of the Bre.19 in the Insurgent OB should it go over to the Loyalist player.
[Official Erratum, 01-Jun-96]
Loyalist OB – Conditional Reinforcements, Releasing Basque Garrison
One of conditions for release of the Euzkadi garrison is the presence of 4 REs of Insurgent units north of the 19xx hexrow. Does this include the 19xx hexrow itself?
No. The term “north of the 19xx hexrow” means just that. Units *in* hex of the 19xx hexrow are not *north* of the 19xx hexrow. Had it been intended that units in the 19xx hexrow be included, the Loyalist OB would have specified “on or north of the 19xx hexrow”.
[AEG, Developer, 03-Mar-04]