Europa series Game VI, The Campaign in Egypt and Libya, December 1940 to January 1943

Designed by John M. Astell and Frank Chadwick.

2/82 edition. Initial publication. Brown Europa Map box. The original box back was blank, and a printed descriptive box back was added in 1983. Errata sheets for the game was dated April 1983, 14 June 1983, and 7 December 1983. The 7 December 1983 errata is definitive. Printed: 10,847

Western Desert provided Frank Chadwick, ever the North Africa buff, to design a North Africa campaign game.  The game encompasses the campaigns in Egypt and Libya from December 1940 until January 1943, as well as the peripheral operations on Malta and Cyprus, and in Syria and Lebanon.

The Maps Stretch from the battle grounds around Tripoli to the Levant, along with Cyprus, Crete, Malta, and part of Sicily. Over a dozen types of terrain are charted. The counters represent the participatieng forces: The Italian 10th Army and 5th Army, Rommel's Afrika Korps, and the British 9th Army and 8th Army (including Indians, the ANZAC corps, Canadians and more!). Most counters represent divisions, but  individual battalions, regiments and brigades are available where historically justified. In line with other Euopa games, aircraft units are groups of approximately 40-50 planes organized by type (such as fighter or dive-bomber) and model (from obsolete CR.42 biplanes to Me109's and Spitfires). The rules utilize basic Europa game mechanics as a framework, with specialized rules covering the historical situation in more detail. The use of game mechanics originally designed for the Eastern Front is a testimonial to the Europa Series game rules. 

Game Components

  • two 21" x 27" maps
  • 480 die cut counters
  • complete set of rules
  • chart set
  • two dices



Western Desert: Analyzing the Interplay of the Game, the Europa System, and the Historical Campaign, Bill Stone - ETO 3 and ETO4
“2C or Not 2C” Revising the Western Desert Order of Battle, Ben Knight - ETO 32/33

The Grenadier

"Italian Offensive: An unofficial scenario for Western Desert" - The Grenadier 23


Britain: The Middle East, Sep I 39 to Dec I 40, by John Astell, Nuts&Bolts #3
Drive on Beirut. A Western Desert Scenario by Gary Stagliano, Nuts&Bolts #5
Europa Diary: Western Desert/The Near East, by Terry Foskett, Nuts&Bolts #10/11
Unofficial: Western Desert - German Armour Replacements /RECCAM, by Karl Gaarsoe, Nuts&Bolts #6/7
Western Desert Errata and Additions, Nuts&Bolts #4
Western Desert Errata, December 7th, 1983, Nuts&Bolts #6/7

The Europa Magazine

“The Aegean Route.” By Mark Yanaway. TEM 43/44.
“Battlefield Report: Rommel Beyond the Pyramids.” By Grant Luetkehans. TEM 41.
“Cunningham’s Pond.” By Frank Watson. TEM 37.
“A Duel in the Desert.” By Peter Robbins. TEM 13.
“El Alamein.” By Jim Arnold. TEM 28.
“Enter Rommel.” By Frank Watson. TEM 15.
“Inside Europa.” By John Astell. TEN 8.
“Just Deserts: Strategy in Western Desert.” By Mark Pitcavage. TEM 15.
“Layforce in the Invasion of Syria.” By James Willauer. TEM 38/39.
“Making Tracks on the Blue: A Secondary Road System for Western Desert.” By Frank Watson. TEM 15.
“Midnight at the Oasis.” By Frank Watson. TEM 13.
“A New Bearing for Operation Compass.” By Ben Knight. TEN 2.
“Operation Crusader.” By Frank Watson. TEM 31.
“Updating the New Desert Options.” By John Astell and Ben Knight. TEM 14.
“Western Desert Campaign Report: Testing the New Desert Options.” By Ben Knight. TEM 16.

Related Games

War in the Desert - Front cover

War in the Desert - Successor

Torch - Box Art - Front

Torch (Expansion)

The near East - Game Box - Front

The near East - Expansion


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