Mini-Game (Postcard Game) "Sink the Bismarck!"

This is English rules of "Sink the Bismarck!", a free postcard game presented by Command Magazine Japan Edition (CMJ) in 2009 and republished by Banner of War Studio (China) in 2016. Original webpage is here. This is a sister game of "Pursuit of the Graf Spee".


This is a two-player game with the theme of "Rhine Exercise". One player takes charge of the German Navy, and the other one player the Royal Navy. If the German Navy places the Bismarck in the port of Brest (hex F7) at the end of any turn with scoring 6 Victory Points (VPs) or scoring more VPs than the Royal Navy scores, the German Navy wins. If the Royal Navy sinks the Bismarck, the Royal Navy wins. If the German Navy does not win at the end of turn 18, the Royal Navy wins.

To a person who does not have the game (postcard):
Please download the game from the following, print it, and use it.
Front (910KB)
Back (214KB)


[2.1] The Royal Navy counters whose names are printed on the map are placed face down in the hexes. Other counters (Hood, P.O. Wales and 3 dummy counters) may be placed face down in any hexes. Any number of counters may be stacked in one hex.

[2.2] The German Navy counter (Bismarck) is placed outside of the map, but it is virtually in the hex A5, A6 or B7. Please record it on a piece of paper etc.


Repeat the following steps each turn:
(1) German Navy's recording of movement
(2) Royal Navy's movement
(3) Royal Navy's search operation
(4) Combat or attacking transport convoy


Usually the German Navy counter is not placed on the map. Its place is recorded on a piece of paper etc. The distance which it may move is the number on the lower right in the counter = speed (at first it is 2 and falls 1 if damaged). It may not enter into the numberless hexes. It may not go beyond the land hexsides.


Similar to the German Navy counter, they moves 1-3 hexes. Unlike the German Navy, the Royal Navy counters are placed face down on the map. Even if it is turned face up, it is turned face down at the beginning of each turn. Multiple counters may be placed in one hex. Dummy counters may move 3 hexes.

[5.1] Restrictions on Movement
The Royal Navy counters (except Hood, P.O. Wales and dummies) may not move until the German Navy counter is discovered. The Royal Navy player designates one hex at every discovery. Every Royal Navy counter in the designated hex becomes movable.


After the Royal Navy completes its movement, if there is a Royal Navy counter in the same hex as the German Navy counter is in, the Bismarck is discovered and the German Navy player must tell the number of the hex. The Royal Navy counter in the hex is turned face up. If there is no Royal Navy counter in the hex where the Bismarck is, the German Navy player tells "there is no sign of the enemy".

[6.1] Search by Aircraft
If the Bismarck was not discovered, the Royal Navy player turns an aircraft carrier counter (having * at the number on the lower left = attack strength) face up and choose one adjacent hex. The German Navy player must tell whether the Bismarck is in the hex or not. If the Bismarck was discovered, the air attack is resolved.

[6.2] Dummy
If the Royal Navy counter which was turned face up is a dummy, the German Navy player rolls a die. If the speed is 2 and the die is rolled 4 or less, the dummy is removed. If the speed is 1 and the die is rolled 2 or less, the dummy is removed. If the dummy is not removed, the Bismarck is considered to be pursued by the Royal Navy's vessel which does not become the counter (cruiser or destroyer) and its movement must be opened in the next turn. The dummy moves together and the same judgment is done in the next turn.

[7.0] COMBAT

Combat occurs when there are counters of both sides in the same hex. And an aircraft carrier in the adjacent hex may make an air attack. Combat is resolved in the following procedures:
(1) Attack by aircraft
(2) Attack by vessel in the descending order of attack strength (if there are multiple counters of the same attack strength, their attacks are considered to be made simultaneously)

[7.1] Resolution
Choose a target and roll the same number of dice as attack strength. The target loses 1 step at every die which is rolled the number of its defense strength (the number on the lower middle) or more. The number on the upper left is the step of the vessel. It sinks if its step becomes 0.

[7.2] Damage
The Bismarck has 4 steps and replace its damaged counter with the counter which has 2 steps when it loses the first 2 steps. The Royal Navy counter with 2 steps reduce its attack strength by 2 when it loses 1 step. Both sides score 1VP at every step of the damage on enemy.


If the German Navy counter did not combat and is in the Atlantic convoy route (hex E1, D2, D3, C3, C4 or D5) or African convoy route (hex F4, E4 or E5), it may make an attack on the convoy. Roll a die and follow the result. In case of "Radio Intercepted" or "2VP", the German Navy player must disclose the hex where the Bismarck is.

Convoy Attack Table

1No Contact
2-3Radio Intercepted


Q: Even if an aircraft carrier is waiting (has not been designated its hex), may it do search and attack by aircraft?
A: It may not do until the Royal Navy player discovers the Bismarck and cancels its restriction of movement.
(28 Apr. 2009)

Q: Unlike "Pursuit of the Graf Spee", even if discovered, may the Bismarck make an attack on the convoy?
A: Yes, but if it combatted (air attack etc), it may not make an attack on the convoy.
(28 Apr. 2009)

Last-modified: Sun 01-Jul-2018 04:04:20 PM +0900 JST