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Backhand Blow '43 (Monster Edition)

By: Critical Hit

Type: Ziplock

Product Line: Advanced Squad Leader - Eastern Front

Last Stocked on 12/2/2022

Product Info

Backhand Blow '43 (Monster Edition)
Publish Year
NKG Part #
MFG. Part #


KHARKOV, UKRAINE, 11 March 1943: Local Russian command had drawn a line through Kharkov where they would make their stand. The Gosprom building and Kharkov Zoo lay along this line. The Zoo, and surrounding Shevchenko Park named for a WW I general, was the southern flank of this line and the Russians were determined to hold it. The III Bn/1st Panzer was tasked with taking this part of town. The German plan was to split their force, with one group circling south and attacking through the park-like zoo. Stbf. Hanson, commander of the II Bn/1st SS Panzer Gr Regiment., led the attack through the park, supported by 7th Panzer KP under Ost. Astheger and Ost. Soreman commanding 2nd KP of 1st SS Panzerjäger Abteilung. The Russian forces, a piecemeal collection of the 208th SRB 51st NKVD units, militia, the Third Tank Army and the 48th Rifle Division, were slowly pushed back from the square.

During the year 1976 a ground-breaking tactical-level game called “Squad Leader” was released. The brainchild of designer John Hill, it quickly grew into a system that later ‘advanced’ into ... and even larger system. Based on some thumbnail calculations, a 15 year-old boy ripping open the cover on his first edition ‘purple box’ SL game ... would be ... 53 years-old today. And likely, his ability to game all weekend ... maybe sipping a soda pop and munching on some delicious Nabisco doo dads. Times have changed, and our teenaged wargamer hasn’t lost one iota of his passion ... for holding building 3N2 ... or rolling a ‘critical hit’ at that key moment .... when a scenario hangs in the balance. But if the half-centurion of gaming greatness wants to admit one thing that might have changed ... he may be happy to embrace a ‘super-sized’ approach. Enter BACKHAND BLOW ‘43 with the largest counters ... 5/8” MMC/SMC and a massive, 3/4” AFV/VEHICLE/GUN counter presentation. The first ever.

Not just the game pieces are ‘super-sized’ in BB43! The map also is expanded, and features a hex size that allows the 3/4” AFV counters to have more ‘elbow room’ than in standard hexes—and squads and leaders ... even more.


  • 1 Color Wraparound Cover Sheet
  • Six 18” x 12” Color Cardstock Maps
  • Two Countersheets of 176 Counters
  • Two Countersheets of 167 Counters
  • 2 ASL Special Rules Sheets
  • 8 Scenarios
Scenarios included:

  • Double Trouble – Kharkov, Ukraine, March 10th 1943
  • The Zoo-Landers - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 10th 1943
  • Knights of the West - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 10th 1943
  • A Walk in the Garden - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 11th 1943
  • Track Meet - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 12th 1943
  • The Hammer of Pravda Street - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 11th 1943
  • Captain Sanin’s Lament - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 12th 1943
  • ”I Hear the Deep Mournful… Urra!” - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 13th 1943
  • Death Rides a Pale Horse - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 10th 1943
  • Nothing to Fear - Kharkov, Ukraine, March 12th 1943

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