My first sessions of Pavlov’s House made such a great impression on me, that I decided to play even more of that fantastic game. I had in a pretty detailed way presented the historical background, game rules and components in my initial post – Pavlov’s House – first impressions. I will not repeat myself here, but should you like to know more about that title and my initial struggles to overcome the German assaults, please feel free to have a look.

Still, I will probably surprise a little my Dear Readers. I appreciate the DVG (DanVerssen Games) creation so much that I would love to share it with my other, fellow wargamers. But how to do it with solitaire game? Well, Pavlov’s House has an answer for it – it allows for a session with up to 3 players!

Multiplayer modes in Pavlov’s House

The map and its perspectives – from right, strategic (Volga River), tactical (January 9th Square), Operational (Pavlov’s House)

How to do it? The Pavlov’s House map is divided in three key sections, each having its own rules as well as cards deck and interacting with others:

  • strategic perspective – on the right side of the board is a depiction of the Volga River and operational-level elements of the Soviet 62nd Army, which were critical in the defense of Pavlov’s House.
  • tactical perspective – in the middle of the board is a view of the area immediately surrounding Pavlov’s House (primarily, 9 January Square). This portion of the board is used for tracking Wehrmacht Counters, as well as the deployment of Soviet Sappers in the defense of Pavlov’s House. The Wehrmacht emblem circles are where German counters are placed and advance in direction towards Pavlov’s House.
  • operational perspective – on the left side of the board is a view inside of Pavlov’s House. The colored square areas are combat positions used by the Soviet Counters. This portion of the board is used for tactical-level movement of the Soviet Counters.

In classical, solo play you control strategical and operational perspective, while tactical one is played by the bot and its card deck. In 2 or 3 players, you can freely allocate command of those theaters to players. As I wanted to introduce that game to my best wargaming buddy, Jakub, I decided it would be fun to play as a team! Thus I took responsibility for Soviet 62nd Army while Kuba commanded defense of the House itself. We were about to face fierce attacks of the German enemy pretty soon!

The session report

I am fan of AARs richly saturated with pictures – and of course you can expect such a one below. You can click on each of below photos to enlarge them in the new windows should you be willing to peek on some of the details.

Initial set-up of the game – four soldiers in the House and some supplies only.
One the the most nasty surprises, which starts to appear after first Resupply, is a German Sniper. The defenders took a toll and comrade Alexandrov were instantaneously killed.
After resupply #2 – first two attack decks passed. I invested mainly in communication (Soviet fields 14-17) which enable additional action. But at the toll of three disrupted AA guns. Kuba hired AT crew plus a Soviet sniper. So far so good!
During the next turn (or third attack deck) Kuba decided to release Storm Group. Initially, not very well prepared thus bloody failure.
Second attempt was much better planned thus victory and 6 VPs!
After resupply #3 – we are still holding. My communication network was disrupted but I rebuilt slightly the AA guns. Steady stream of supplies reaches the House. It is getting crowded on 9 January square while Kuba invests in anther AT team.
One more attempt and one more success – we were very, very lucky to draw purple objective as this was the only “clean” sector.
Thirteen German units converging on the House was too much. We have to immediately do something about it…
…and so we did. Well prepared Artillery strike plus two AT guns remove most of the danger.
After resupply #4 and fifth deck – end of game situation. (Sight of relief). Most of the guys in the house were half-dead but made it eventually. And what is more, the house itself was destroyed from two directions. Still, we finished with 5 VPs and minor victory. All thanks to fortunate Storm Groups cards!

And some more close-ups for the final situation on the map:

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The summary

After that play I appreciate and like the Pavlov’s House even more. Not only this is a fantastic solo game, but can bee played cooperatively or competitively. If you add to this also additional modes (objective cards, tactics cards) this creates a truly fantastic masterpiece which can give you long hours of joy! You can be sure to hear from me more about that great game!