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Island of Death: The Invasion of Malta, 1942

Island of Death
The Invasion of Malta, 1942

Sitting astride the sea lanes from Italy to North Africa, the island of Malta hobbled Axis attempts to supply their forces in Libya and Egypt. Frustrated Axis planners hatched a series of operations designed to capture the fortress, known as Operation Herclues to the Germans and Operation C.3 to the Italians. Several times the assault seemed imminent, but at each juncture the Axis held back from rolling the dice. Now we let you see what might have happened.


The game includes two scenarios, plus variants covering various Axis and Allied plans to defend and attack the island. The game system is one of our more involved yet thanks to the island’s small size takes only a few hours to play.

British gunners on Malta await the Axis, 1942.

Game pieces represent companies and battalions. Units are rated for morale, attack, defense and movement. Superior morale will assist a unit in several game functions but particularly in combat. Tank units are rated for armor quality; anti-tank units have a similar rating used to fight tanks. There are very few tanks on Malta, where infantry will determine the outcome.

Artillery is the most powerful weapon on the battlefield. Artillery units may support an attack or a defense. And artillery must be supplied; running out of artillery ammunition is a very bad thing, and both players must choose where to use their shells. Each game “day” is divided into three daylight and one night turns.

The map is divided into hexagons and shows the entire island at a scale of 1 kilometer per hex.


The British defense is built around the division-sized Malta garrison of nine regular British battalions, plus four more of the King’s Own Maltese Regiment. They are backed by plentiful artillery and anti-aircraft units. In the first wave, the Axis has a German parachute brigade and a brigade-sized Italian parachute division, plus a small Italian air-landing division. There are also commando units from the Italian Navy and the Italian Air Force. The second wave has two Italian infantry divisions. Italian warships, and German and Italian aircraft, provide support for the attack.

Fortress Malta is an expansion book adding 420 new pieces and new scenarios for them covering the 1940, 1941 and 1942 invasion plans, plus analysis and historical background.





Note: This product is a digital download. Pieces require assembly.

Stock Code: APL1582

Price: $29.99 download; free to the Gold Club

Status: Now Available!

You can download Island of Death right here.
It’s $29.99, but if you’re a Gold Club member, it’s free to you as part of the Golden Library (there’s no Gold Club discount or freeness through Wargame Vault).

Click here to join the Gold Club

See your Gold Club Insider newsletter for ordering information.

Golden Chipboard
Ten (10) chipboard sheets, slightly thicker than the ones we use for game pieces, for use in pasting up your own counters from our downloadable games and expansions.

You can order Golden Chipboard right here.




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