About Board Game:In Pavlov’s House, we take control of the brave defenders of a Soviet strongpoint in Stalingrad as they hold out against constant German attacks for almost two months. We also control the key leaders throughout the Soviet 62nd Army that made the defense of Pavlov’s House possible.

The goal in Pavlov’s House is to last through all the German attack waves, inflicting in the process as many casualties on attackers as possible. In the game, this is depicted by playing through a deck of cards representing elements of the German 6th Army.

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. 

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.

While balancing the resources needed to advance your technology you also need to build a military. Military is built in the same way as civilian buildings. Players that have a weak military will be preyed upon by other players. There is no map in the game so you cannot lose territory, but players with higher military will steal resources, science, kill leaders, take population or culture. It is very difficult to win with a large military, but it is very easy to lose because of a weak one.

Would you stand-up to the task and manage to defend against relentless enemy?
Number of players:1 (digital version), 1-3 (tabletop version)
Playing time:30 min (a lot of mechanics are really nicely automated here)
Platforms:PC (Steam) & iOS iPad (App Store)
Game Publisher & DesignerDan Verssen Games (DVG), David Thompson
App DeveloperBookmark Games
What I like:– great gameplay modes: we are getting all the boardgame set-ups: basic with no special rules, standard with Operational Support cards and two with increased difficulty – Veteran and Elite – which utilize Tactics Cards. On top of this there is a nice Tutorial for new players.

– definitely the fact of detailed rules implementation, with zero errors – this I cannot stress more; so many digital adaptations were a mere resemblance of great boardgames by erroneous conversion

light & fast – this app works like a charm, it is very fast, uses minimal amount of processing power and can be played also on older machines – be it phone or PC

functional and intuitive interface. It scales pretty well on tablets and PCs, allows for easy access to icons, cards or actions. It is not too crowded and provides great experience.

– in the end, it is fantastic boardgame, very challenging with possibility to increase the difficulty level; great if you cannot bring the boxed version to the table; you can actually find more in my review
What I do not like:– There is no version for iPhone. Probably it might not be as readable due to amount of details as on iPad and PC, but still this is a pity.

– It steals time which I would normally devote to my boxed version of the game 🙂


With the series of screenshots from the game let me now present the application itself and its main functionalities:

The menu is very intuitive; you have access to all modes with clear legend to the right
Main game interface nicely fits all the critical elements. Three sections are clearly visible. In above example, the strategy perspective, we see 4 command cards to choose from.
The second phase of each Turn is Wehrmacht attack (tactical perspective). Here a heavy bombing by three Stuka squadrons converging on the city.
Lastly, the operational perspective with the defenders of the House in actions – in this case, sergeant Yakov Pavlov.
There is also possibility to zoom at particular part of the map – here we can see enemy forces approaching the House from Green and Red sectors.
I mentioned tutorial for new players. We have also all the rules with graphical explanations in the form of rulebook. This is my personal preferred method – so you can use whatever works for you.
When playing wargames, I am always deeply interested in history told by the particular position. So I would like to underline access to all the Stalingrad battle historical background we can find in Pavlov’s House – maps, photos, timeline, etc. This is very nicely prepared!


I am so happy that this great solo game by David Thompson received such a great digital port. I will be quite honest – after couple of failures with such endeavors I am approaching each new digital edition with a dose of caution. Here we have adaptation 100% true to its original, created error-free, with tons of additional materials giving the historical background.

If you are wondering if those digital implementation of wargames will be to your liking and where to start – I will not hesitate – get Pavlov’s House digital adaptation as a first step. And if you played various Boardgame Apps and are fed-up of half-products or error-rich designs, this is definitely a refreshing change. Highly recommended!