Avalanche Press

Avalanche Press

Avalanche Press is an American company that publishes board wargames and has published some role-playing game supplements. An extremely prolific company, they have produced many respected contributions to the wargame community, most notably the "The Great War at Sea" and ""Panzer Grenadier" series", as well as "Red Parachutes", one of their earliest games and a detailed study of the Soviet crossing of the Dnepr River in 1943.

Avalanche Press was started in 1994 by Mike Bennighof and Brian Knipple. In 1996, Avalanche Press released the first game in the "Great War at Sea" series. Twice, the series has won the prestigious Origins Award for the best historical game of the year. They have also received many finalist nominations for the Origins Awards over the last few years.

In 2001 Avalanche Press became one of the early publishers to produce products the open-source d20 system. The book "Celtic Age" won the 2002 Origins Award for Best RPG Supplement.

Like many modern wargame publishers, Avalanche has adopted the practice developing several games on similar subjects, re-using and refining the rules of earlier games in new ones ("Soldier Kings" and "Soldier Emperor", for example, are very similar), as well as releasing "series" of games where each one comes with an identical rule book, with different maps, counters and scenarios in each one.

Avalanche Press currently employs 11 people, with its physical plant located in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Gold Club

In mid-2006, Avalanche Press debuted the "Gold Club" program. Membership in this club costs $30 per year in the United States or $40 per year elsewhere. When announced, benefits included a 10% discount on all orders, a 20% discount at conventions where Avalanche Press is presenting, two free sheets of die cut counters per year, a quarterly "Gold Club Insider" newsletter with inside information on the company and future games, a free game every year, and a Gold Club membership card.

Changes to the Gold Club in 2007

Avalanche Press had a hard time in 2006 and as a result did not release anything for the Gold Club. To help compensate for this problem, in July of 2007, the company announced that current memberships and memberships placed within a certain time span would be increased to 18 months. The pace of the newsletter releases was increased, with Avalanche Press aiming for a monthly schedule. In early August, it was announced that members would receive "two" free games, but that they would be delivered as pdf files, not boxed games. The games will require some assembly, but Gold Club members will be able to vote on which games they would like to have produced in that format. It was later decided in early 2008, based on customer feedback, to deliver one boxed, retail game and one game delivered as a pdf.

Classic Wargames program

The Classic Wargames program is designed to let customers choose what games they would like Avalanche Press to produce.

Original program

In the original "Classic Wargames" program, descriptions of several games were put on the website and customers could place orders for the games that they wished at pre-order prices. There was no time limit placed, and once a game reached a certain number of orders, the game went into full scale production and the price was raised to full price. This resulted in some games staying on the website for a long time.

2007 program redesign

In 2007, as part of several other changes, the "Classic Wargames" program was restructured. Under the new Classic Wargames structure, every few months three related games are placed on the website at once. After a certain amount of time has passed, the game that has the most pre-orders is placed in production. If the games are less than $100 and two games are close in the number of pre-orders, two games may be produced. Any games that do not have enough pre-orders are sent to "Niflheim", the "File Cabinet of Doom".

The first set of games under the revised program were Army of Lappland, Red Fortress: Odessa, and Red Desert: Nomonhan. Of these games, "Army of Lappland" and "Red Desert" graduated into production. According to the "Gold Club Insider", the next group of games will be in the "Great War at Sea" series.

Future games survey

On September 12, 2008, Avalanche Press posted a survey so that fans could vote on games that they would like to see madecite web | url=http://www.avalanchepress.com/poll20080912.php | title=Future Games | date=September 12, 2008] . These games include a variation of the Great War at Sea series during the age of sail, a conflict between the United States and Canada on the Great Lakes during the 1920s, an updated version of U.S. Navy Plan Orange, a game covering the German Plan Z, a World War II air combat game, a game covering the Six-Day War as well as one based on Napoleon's campaigns.


*"Eagles of the Empire" series
*"The Great War at Sea" series -- Dreadnought era naval combat
*"Infantry Attacks" series -- World War I tactical combat (a spinoff of Panzer Grenadier)
*"Ironclads" series -- 19th century naval combat (a spinoff of Great War at Sea)
*"Panzer Grenadier" series -- World War II tactical combat
*"Rome at War" series -- Ancient warfare series (closely related to the "Napoleonic Battles" series)
*"Second World War at Sea" series -- World War II naval combat (a spinoff of Great War at Sea)
*"Third Reich"/"Great Pacific War" series -- World War II strategic game



*"" (2000)
*"" (1999)


*"" (2002)
*"Airborne" (2002)
*"" (2006)
*"Airlines" (1998)
*"Alaska's War" (2007)
*"Alsace 1945" (2005)
*"" (2003)
*"" (1994)


*"Battle of the Bulge" (2002)
*"Beyond Normandy" (2004)
*"Bismark" (2005)
*"" (2006)
*"Blood on the Snow" (1995)
*"Bomb Alley" (2002)


*"Chickamauga & Chattanooga" (2003)
*"" (2004)


*"" (2004)
*"Desert Rats" (2004)
*"Digging" (1999)


*"Eastern Fleet" (2001)
*"Eastern Front" (2005)


*"Fading Legions" (2002)


*"" (2005)
*"Gettysburg 1863" (2002)
*"" (2003)
*"Great Pacific War" (2003)
*"" (1998)
*"" (1996, 2001)


*"Hannibal at Bay" (2000)
*"Heroes of the Soviet Union" (2001)


*"" (2001)
*"" (2007)
*"" (2006)


*"" (2006)


*"Leyte Gulf" (2005)


*"" (1994)
*"Midway" (2002)


*"Napoleon in the Desert" (2002)
*"Napoleon on the Danube" (2005)


*"Operation Cannibal" (1996)


*"Panzer Grenadier" (1998)
*"Preussisch-Eylau" (1999)


*"Queen of the Celts" (2007)


* "Red God of War" (2005)
* "Red Parachutes" (2005)
* "" (1997)
* "Red Vengeance" (2005)
* "Red Warriors" (2006)
* "Res Publica" (1999)
* "Road to Berlin" (2005)

*"Scotland the Brave" (1998)
*"Sea of Troubles" (2007)
*"Semper Fi! Guadacanal" (2003)
*"Sinister Forces" (2006)
*"Soldier Emperor" (2003)
*"Soldier Kings" (2002)
*"Soldier Raj" (2004)
*"SOPAC" (1999)
*"" (2006)
*"Strike South" (2005)
*"Survival of the Witless" (1997)


*"Tears of the Dragon" (2003)
*"" (2006)
*"Third Reich" (2001)
*"Tiger of Malaya" (2006)


*"U.S. Navy Plan Black" (1999)
*"U.S. Navy Plan Gold" (2006)
*"U.S. Navy Plan Orange" (1998)
*"U.S. Navy Plan Red" (2002)


*"Winter Fury" (2001)


*"All For One, One For All"
*"Arctic Front" (2002)
*"Aztecs: Empire of the Dying Sun"
*"Celtic Age"
*"Distant Oceans" (2003)
*"Doom of Odin"
*"Dreadnoughts" (2004)
*"East of Suez"
*"Edelweiss" (2003)
*"Endless Sands"
*"Great White Fleet"
*"Greenland Saga"
*"I, Mordred"
*"Jungle Fighting" (2004)
*"Little People"
*"Nile Empire"
*"Noble Knights"
*"Noble Steeds"
*"Player's Guide: Third Reich/Great Pacific War" (2004)
*"Tank Battles" (2003)
*"Twilight of Atlantis"
*"Viking Age"
*"Vlad, the Impaler"
*"Zeppelins" (2006)


External links

* [http://www.avalanchepress.com Avalanche Press homepage]
* [http://battlezone.invisionzone.com BattleZone, a Chicago club that features Panzer Grenadier]
* [http://www.btinternet.com/~norm.smith/PZGREN.html Norman Smith's Panzer Grenadier Site]
* [http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/panzer_grenadier/ Panzer Grenadier Yahoo Group]

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