Play to Win the Battle of the Atlantic
Uncommon and very interesting German board game, published in 1941 under the Nazi regime, showing the theatre of war in the North Sea. With battles raging throughout, this map highlights the desire of German forces to control this body of water and invade the United Kingdom, as well as the use of board games as propaganda for the youth in the Nazi empire.
The game centers on a map of the North Sea, showing Germany, the Low Countries, the United Kingdom, and part of Scandinavia. Throughout, planes fly, ships are sunk, minefields float, and more. Naturally, given where the map was printed, much of the fighting occurs far from German shores and Britain seems like it is on the brink of invasion.
The artwork for the game was drawn by noted naval artist Adolf Bock. As noted by Gameboard Geek (who mis-identifies the artist as Adolf Zeck), the game is:
Based on the exploits of Gunther Prien, a German U-boat commander who entered Scapa Flow in 1939 and sank the British Battleship Royal Oak.
The game has 6 metal submarines that follow points on a track around the North Sea based on the roll of the die. Players must follow the instructions of special spots they enter. . . .
Adolf Bock (1890-1968) was one of Europe's best regarded marine painters.
Born in Berlin, he studied at the Royal School of Applied Arts and at the Art Academy Berlin.
From 1919-1939, Bock worked in Finland, producing a large number of post cards between 1932 and 1936, published by Tilgmann, in Kuvataide Oy and abroad.
By World War II he was again in Germany, where he was a member of Verein Berliner Künstler (the Association of Berlin Artists) and painted a number of naval battle scenes. In 1944, Adolf Hitler awarded Bock the title of professor, the only such appointment made by Hitler during WWII.
He was a passenger on the steamer Wilhelm Gustloff, which sunk in January 1945, but was rescued. .
Several books have been written about Bock, including a bigraphby Hans-Walter Hansen and titled, "Marine Painter, ADOLF BOCK: Life and Work" in 2001.