JagdPanther Magazine / Jagdpanther Publications

JagdPanther Publications was founded by Stephen V. Cole in Amarillo, Texas in 1973. According to at least one source, the company was in operation from 1973 to 1976, and produced not only its flagship publication JagdPanther, but also other newsletters as well as operated game companies and other subsidiary operations. Cole sold half of JagdPanther Publications to Allen Eldridge before the company was shut down in 1977, apparently out of a desire to concentrate on other interests. Cole proceeded to form Task Force Games and published a military-themed current affairs newsletter called For Your Eyes Only that later became part of The Strategy Page before moving on to leadership of the Amarillo Design Bureau which became famous for Star Fleet Battles.1

The magazine itself was published quarterly during its brief run and contained complete games or major variants in each issue. Unlike other, mainstream, magazines, a strong focus on modern era tactical gaming was apparent. Initial initial issues concentrated on variants for PanzerBlitz, and JagdPanther produced a number of games of their own at a time when games on that scale were a rarity.

The magazine maintained a low circulation. Issue 10, with a date of 25 July 1975 on its masthead, provided a summary of the changes in physical quality to date in an article entitled "What is Past is Prelude":

When this magazine began, it was a great deal of fun. Providing, as it did, a medium for us to expound on a favorite game, the first few issues were simply an old style hobby magazine. Somewhere in those issues we began our habit of inflammatory rhetoric, and it was in that area that we gained our first wide spread publicity. That, of course, hurt our growth, as did the bad shortage of cash.

Physical improvement began with offset in 3 and the hard covers of 4. This stabalized (sic) at approximately that level for a year, until our press runs outran the physical capability of the press, so we had the highly successful format used in issues 8 and 9.

...One piece maps and die cut counters have been the most bitched about and demanded improvements we know of, and we are proud to have them for you in this issue. If not for a printer who was willing to give it a try, you wouldn't have them...You asked for more pages, and you got them. Now, no one is really foold by this bit of putting the rules (for the included game) in the middle and numbering them, but at least we can say we gave you four more pages....If you expect more pages, you may be disappointed for a while. With this system we must upgrade in multiples of eight pages, and until circulation hits 1000 this is not economically feasible.2

Issues

The magazine underwent several format changes:

Issue Date Format Contents

Issue 1
Vol 1 No 1
Apr 1973 11" offset. reprinted at 14" photocopy and offset MP44. Tactical squad-level game.
Cowpens.
Scrimmage IV. Football.
PanzerBlitz expansion. 35 scenarios involving 14 countries

Issue 2
Vol 1 No 2
Jul 1973 11" photocopy. redone offset at 14" ACAV. PanzerBlitz in Vietnam.
Fliegenkampf. Tactical air rules for PanzerBlitz.
PanzerBlitz expansion. Helicopter, glider and paratrooper rules.
The Capture of Fort Eban Emael.


Issue 3
Vol 1 No 3

Oct 1973 14" offset MGB. PanzerBlitz in Second World War Pacific.
Swordfish!. Taranto Harbour.
Origins of Vietnam.


Issue 4
Vol 1 No 4

Jan 1974 14" offset, heavy cover added Sidi Rezegh. PanzerBlitz in North Africa.
Alderkampf. Strategic movement for PanzerBlitz and air-to-air combat.
Graf Spee. (Miniatures)
Holocaust. Nuclear Destruction variant.
Komet und Meteor. Foxbat and Phantom variant.
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Issue 5
Vol 2 No 1

Apr 1974 14" offset, heavy cover Zeppelin. Strategic First World War air warfare.
RN. World War II miniatures: Germany vs. Britain.
Damascus map. Sinai extension.
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Issue 6
Vol 2 No 2

Jul 1974 " WWIII. Expanded and linked NATO, East is Red, and Sinai.

Issue 7
Vol 2 No 3
Oct 1974 " Gorlice-Tarnow.

Issue 8
Vol 2 No 4
Jan 1975 11" x 17" sheets folded and saddle-stapled PQ-17.
Siege of Barad Dur, 3430. Lord of the Rings battle.


Issue 9
Vol 3 No 1

Apr 1975

"

Goetterdammerung. Could link to War in the East.

Issue 10
Vol 3 No 2
Jul 1975 first colour cover, die-cut counters, single-sheet map Marine! USMC small unit operations in the 1970s.

Issue 11
Vol 3 No 3
Oct 1975 " The March on India, 1944.

Issue 12
Vol 3 No 4
Jan 1976 " Anvil-Dragoon.


Issue 13
Vol 4 No 1

Apr 1976 " The Siege of Leningrad.

Issue 14
Vol 4 No 2
Jul 1976

"

Warsaw Pact. World War III in Europe.

Issue 15
Vol 4 No 3
Oct 1976 Renamed Battlefield, final issue Jacksonville: The Beaches of Doom. Hypothetical 1977 Russian invasion of the US from Cuba.


Issue 3 (Volume 1 Number 3)


Issue 10 (Volume 3 Number 2)


Final Issue

Games

JagdPanther also produced its own games. Early types had sectioned maps and unmounted counters, later games had single sheet maps and die-cut counters. Eight titles were produced, with two additional "joke" titles, only two appear to have been tactical-level games. Airborne! was a variant of Marine!, and apparently only in the later style with full maps and die-cut counters. Nowsville, 1980 is listed in source literature as being a "tactical urban warfare" game of the 1st style with sectioned map an uncut counters.

MOVES Magazine commented on Marine! and JagdPanther in general:

Jagdpanther Magazine, in its recent issues, has been publishing games much in the same vein as the early S&T efforts. As usual, some are more successful than others...PQ-17 is a sub versus convoy game with some interesting ideas, while Marine! is, again, a relatively simple, tactical-level simulation of a variety of Marine engagements over the past thirty or so years. Nothing special, unless you have an urge to replay the Tang Island "invasion." JP also publishes quite a few non-magazine games: The Spanish Civil War and The Fall of Bataan are both good buys, considering the price. Bataan, perhaps, is too simple (none of JP's games are overly mindbending) and suffers in comparison to Balboa's game on the same subject...3

Newsletters

JagdPanther Publications also operated an International Confederation of Wargamers, and published an ICW Newsletter which was in essence a local wargaming club newssheet during the initial run. Issues 34, 35 and 36 were sold via JagdPanther and had map extensions for other games, and in 1974 the newsletter was replaced by a publication called Bushwhacker which went out of print a year later having gone eight issues. Bushwhacker itself featured mini-games, variant, hobby news, historical articles and hobby information, with letter-sized maps and unmounted counters. The only tactical level content appears to have been a pair of PanzerBlitz articles in issues 7 and 8, with one being a humour piece called "Battling Busses" and the other being a scenario based on the capture of the Ludendorff Bridge at Remagen.

Eagle Games

In 1975, JagdPanther Publications formed subsidiary company Eagle Games, which produced a number of card and science-fiction projects; it also produced maps for PanzerBlitz, covering Utah Beach, Omaha Beach, Stalingrad, Kursk, Tarawa, Midway, Dieppe, and Dien Bien Phu.

Other

JagdPanther Publications apparently grouped issues of the magazine into collections; issues 1, 2, 3 and 4 were sold in book form as Book I, and issues 5, 6, 7, and 8 as Book II.

Notes

  1. Chiefly, webpage at http://www.gis.net/~pldr/jpp.html was consulted for this article, which was based on an article appearing in issue 15 of the Strategy Gaming Society's newsletter Strategist (September 1995).
  2. "What is Past is Prelude", JagdPanther Issue 10
  3. Berg, Richard "F.O." (Moves Magazine, Nr. 23)

 

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