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Winter War Banner

  • Orig HPS Press Release
  • Planning Maps
  • Reading List
  • Game Documents & Misc
Winter War cover

For 105 days, the tiny nation of Finland fought a war that typically merits only a footnote history books, or a passing remark in a WWII documentaries. Taking on the vast manpower of the Soviet army, the Finns put up a fanatical defense of their homeland, inflicting horrific casualties on the invading Soviet army. In the end, the overwhelming number of Soviet troops and tanks sent into Finland forced the Finns to sue for peace, but they walked away from the conflict with their much bigger neighbor with their independence and national pride intact. Their struggle influenced the landscape and direction of the entire World War that followed--and perhaps the outcome as well. Winter War is a tactical level simulation of this conflict using the Squad Battles system.


Click to Enlarge


On the morning of 30 November 1939, the Soviet Union unleashed its vast military might on its defiant neighbor. Soviet medium bombers attacked the Finnish capital of Helsinki, and immense Soviet resources in men and material surged across the entire length of the border in an attempt to crush the overmatched Finnish military.

Instead of the rapid Blitzkrieg type victory Stalin’s high command predicted, the ill-prepared and poorly led Soviet Army marched into a frozen, desolate meat-grinder, learning the meaning of “sisu”, a Finnish term that could be roughly translated as strength of will, determination, perseverance, and acting rationally in the face of adversity.

Instead of fleeing from the vast Soviet onslaught, the Finns fought bravely, using their knowledge of the land, and pulling from their fierce national pride and “sisu” to inflict massive casualties on the invaders, and earning themselves the nickname of The White Death. The Winter War had begun.

Winter War scenario map

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  • 58 stand alone scenarios and 3 campaigns to choose from.
  • A wide sampling of actions from this conflict, also including the "Continuation War" of 1941.
  • 24 unique maps ranging in size from 1000 hexes to 38,000 hexes providing ample ground for scenario designers to create their own actions
  • Many unique maps providing ample ground for scenario designers to create their own actions.

Engine changes include:

  • Ability to use Asymmetric Scoring in scenarios.
  • New timed detonation feature for certain weapons.
  • Armor assault modifier for vehicles assaulting infantry in Clear hexes.
  • Ability to perform Column Movement via the "Alt" key.
  • New level in OOB so Squads can be added as an organization.
  • Capture feature, so prisoners and civilians can be modeled in scenarios.

Each purchase of Squad Battles: Winter War includes a free electronic copy of the text to the latest edition of William R. Trotter's definitive work "A Frozen Hell".

The game also has the standard scenario, OOB, parameter, database & sub-map editors included with the game. Play modes include A/I, Hot Seat, PBEM, LAN & Internet play.


Click to Enlarge



  • Developer: John Tiller
  • Artist: Joseph Amoral
  • Unit Graphics: Mark Adams
  • Music: Thomas Hook & Daniel Lee
  • Additional AI programming: John Rushing
  • Contributed Sound Effects: Edward Williams
  • Project Coordinator: Rich Hamilton
  • Scenario Maps: Dave Blackburn
  • Orders of Battle: Frank Harmon and Ozgur Budak
  • Scenario Designers: Ozgur Budak and Frank Harmon
  • Book: The White Death, by William Trotter
  • Campaign Maps: Mike Avanzini
  • Playtesters: Dennis Suttman. Bob Bannerman, Phil Driscoll, Jason Lewandowski, Alan, Florjancic, Nik Butler, Jeff Conner, Ucar Gundem, and Atle Jenssen
  • Historical Background Documentation: Alan Florjancic
  • Special Thanks: Set Karlsson (Translation support & research)

System Requirements:

Windows XP, Vista, or 7
Processor: 1 GHz
Disk Space: 1 GB
Memory: 1 GB

Planning Maps    (click for full-sized images)
Honkaniemi map Kelja map Kemijarvi map
Honkaniemi: 1.51 mb gif Kelja: 1.37 mb gif  Kemijarvi: 1.63 mb gif

Koukkuniemi map Koulajarvi map Leipasuo map
Koukkuniemi: 2.46 mb gif Koulajarvi: 5.01 mb gif Leipasuo: 9.06 mb gif

Mannerheim map Neiden map North Finland map
Mannerheim (frozen condition): 4.07 mb gif Neiden: 3.78 mb gif North Finland: 10.9 mb gif

Rukajarvi map

Summa map Suomussalmi map
Rukajarvi: 6.95 mb gif  Summa: 8.63 mb gif Suomussalmi: 18.7 mb gif

Suurniemi map Tolvajarvi map Tuupura map
Suurniemi: 6.26 mb gif Tolvajarvi: 12.6 mb gif  Tuupura: 3.52 mb gif

Viipuri map

Viipuri: 21.3 mb gif    

Click here for larger sized thumbs

Reading List
Paananen,Lauri & Engle, Eloise; Winter War, The: The Soviet Attack on Finland, 1939-1940; Stackpole, 1992
Jowett, Phillip; Finland at War 1939 - 45 (Elite); Osprey , 2006
Edwards, Robert; The Winter War: Russia's Invasion of Finland, 1939-1940; Pegasus, 2008
Trotter, William; A Frozen Hell: The Russo-Finnish Winter War of 1939-1940 ; Algonquin Books, 1991
Tuuri, Antti; The Winter War; Aspasia Books, 1988
Mann, Chris; Hitler's Arctic War: The German Campaigns in Norway, Finland, and the USSR 1940-1945; Thomas Dunne Books, 2003
Stenman, Kari; Lentolaivue 24 (Osprey Aviation Elite 4); Osprey, 2001
Clements, Jonathan; Mannerheim: President, Soldier, Spy; Haus Publishing, 2010
Lunde, Henrik; FINLAND'S WAR OF CHOICE: The Troubled German-Finnish Alliance in World War II; Casemate, 2011
Thomas, Nigel; World War II Soviet Armed Forces (1): 1939-41 (Men-at-Arms); Osprey, 2010
Irincheev, Bair; The Mannerheim Line 1920-39: Finnish Fortifications of the Winter War (Fortress); Osprey, 2009
Irincheev, Bair; WAR OF THE WHITE DEATH: Finland Against the Soviet Union 1939-40; Pen and Sword, 2011



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