How to: Soviets (Full Version)

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Keunert -> How to: Soviets (8/25/2012 10:27:30 AM)

I will soon start a rematch against Olivier, Case Blue Long and try to get together all advice the community has to offer. First a list with my insight so far:

1. Pull the planes back, so they will cover the front lines but stay out of reach of the Luftwaffe.
2. Only set units on interception that have high readiness (90% and above).
3. If doing airmissions try to do it in places the Axis used their fighters and are less likely to intercept
4. Attacks on huge concentrations of tanks will meet a lot of flak, try to find single units with less cover

1. Move them out on the first turn to open supply lines to Sevastopol.
2. Move transports to Sevastopol immediatly to have an emergency exit ready.

1. Create AA units to protect tanks. all tanks should end the turn besides AA. They kill air units and reduce their effectiveness
2. Save HQ units at all cost.
3. Tank units exposed to counterattacks should be supported by infantry. assign some infantry to Tank Armies
4. If possible disband individual tank brigades to form Tank Corps

Army organization
1. Check Front Commands, replace all commanders with organization below 40 and then start to replace all Army commanders with organization below 30.
2. Play cards that improve staff experience on your army commanders.
3. Create armies to strip off Front Commands from fighting units. Or reassign Front Command units to Army HQ
4. Use the create fortification card (8pp) wisely on key points

Briansk Front
? 5th TA will move forward and this time it will not be hindered by out of the depth penalties.

South Western Front
If i take a look at our last game, i am not sure if i will be able to prevent the huge pocket against Olivier.
What can be done is not losing the 18th TC again. on the other hand this is a first turn reinforcement that should be able to do some harm on the Axis spearheads.

South Front
Fortifications will support the defence of Nowotscherkask and Schachty. More Caucasus units will get here.

One big dilemma really is wether to take stand against such a good player or to run? in my latest defeat against Schmolywar i opted to run and was in fact able to prevent the huge pocket in the center. but on my retreat my units got weared down and entrapped so that the losses were about the same as in my game against Olivier.

In our France campaign Olivier tried the run variant too. and the result was devastating: not a single pocket but if you run the Panzers will fight you in terrain where you are vulnerable to airstrikes and tank attacks.

i really would appreciate any thought from other players.

Isokron -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/25/2012 1:56:10 PM)

My take on the southern front is that the key is to hold the railroads going south east through the rough terrain south of Voroshilovgrad. If you hold these and the urban squares around Rostow you can defend Schachty very lightly since his supply around there will be bad. If he takes it, well his supply will be even worse while your supply lines are still secure. This will work even better if you can hold (69,52) north of Rostow as that will force the supply to go over one extra river. If you loose that hex, Nowocherkask and the railroad leading down to Rostow from there will need defending, as those + the plain hexes around Rostow will allow the supply to go through without too much trouble.

I have only played as the soviets against the ai although im playing as german in a pbem, so I might be wrong.

Keunert -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/25/2012 2:24:06 PM)

Yes that's a good advice. in our last game he didn't attack Rostow frontally, he went for that rail first. so maybe this should be the place to build up a good defence and maybe some fort and another strong line from 69,52 down west to the Black Sea

oldspec4 -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/25/2012 10:39:05 PM)

Watch your line up north. I just had an auto sudden death major victory as the Germans by taking both Saratov and Uralsk. Don't know how many other sudden death victory conditions exist on the map.

stone10 -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/26/2012 4:57:59 AM)



In our France campaign Olivier tried the run variant too. and the result was devastating: not a single pocket but if you run the Panzers will fight you in terrain where you are vulnerable to airstrikes and tank attacks

airstrikes were much less effective in DCCB so run variant was not a bad idea.

schmolywar -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/26/2012 3:20:47 PM)

Im playing the full Case Blue PBEM now as the soviets.

Im wondering if its actually better to pull back from Rostov no later than 1st of August. If the panzers come after you it will deplete more of his fuel. As it is now I have very strong defenses around Rostov but the german advance seems much faster overall in the centre and north because of it.

There is also the no step back rule to consider. Is the loss of APs worth it? How many divisions can you build from scratch before the panzers reach the Chir?

Keunert -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/26/2012 5:00:18 PM)

ithink you have to find something in between running and taking a stand. if you run you will be denied PP that help you a lot in reorganization, troop buying and fort building. oil isn't a big problem for the axis, just let the luftwaffe rest a turn and you will build reserves again.

schmolywar -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/27/2012 1:53:55 AM)

In my current game the axis is down from 69K in june to 21K in mid august. Mind you im playing the Case Blue full and it seems different than the short one. I saw that I had almost no fuel drop in our game Keunert, but in this one it is significant.

I seem to be totally unable to stop the axis from advancing east of Voronezh and he is now on the doorstep of Saratov. Im not sure how to tackle this at all as he has no logistical problems.

In WITE you could do the carpet and use reserves behind. Im wondering if its a viable strategy to build new divisions straight from the beginning and use them as cannon fodder to slow the panzers.

Isokron -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/27/2012 11:27:50 AM)

I guess the game you are talking about is ours Schmolywar, in that I actually had to play a oil card last turn as my reserves dropped below 10k toward the end of the turn (oil numbers in graph seem to be from start of turn). Luckily that gave me 24k(anyone knows what the yield range is?) extra which should take me to the volga. I guess that one reason for them dropping so much is that you have been more interested in running than fighting outside of Rostov so I havent taken much losses while often running full speed with my motorized stuff.

As long as he advances along rails I dont think the axis will ever have supply problems outside a few units here and there before bridges can get constructed. My advance in the center of the map (through the railroad less don basis) actually had quite a bit of supply problems especially during rain turns but now the surrounding forces advancing along the rail lines have almost caught up)

I would say that the defend Rostov strategy is good although you might have overdone it a bit as you have about 50% (200+ stacks everywhere) of your total forces within a few hexes from Rostov while I have maybe 20% of mine there.

From the turns we have played so far since you started carpeting new built regiments all over (about 2-7 stack size big) I would say that it does indeed slow the axis down as well as being very annoying. This is especially true since you still have to bombard those minidivisions with air or artillery or risk suffering attrition when attacking them. But i guess it will at least help me keeping my 10-1 loss ratio up.

Sorry for interupting the thread with this personal msg for schmolywar :)

schmolywar -> RE: How to: Soviets (8/27/2012 3:03:21 PM)

I think you might be right Isokron. It doesnt seem to be worth defending Rostov up to a certain point with such an amount of manpower. I did need the prestige though. Thanks for your insight.

Keunert -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 9:05:10 AM)

I think the contrary is the case.

Rostow is the jumping point for the push south. it has vital supply and train connections. as long as the Axis doesn't control Rostow it is hard for them to push south east towards Baku. Rostow is one of the few places where the Soviets can hold against the Axis. if reinforced with some more fortifications to the east and north (Nowocherkask) it will hold out for a long time. the rail network makes it possible to evacuate the city fast if needed. This is the place to stand firm: it will give you prestige and cost the axis prestige. Behind Rostow are open plains, no terrain to fight for the soviets during summer.

schmolywar -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 1:56:58 PM)

Keunert, this is all tied up to the situation around Voronezh. Due to the "no northern border" situation I have to allocate alot more manpower up north than south. South I can buy some time, as was done historically.

Of course, had this been a full map ala WITE the situation would be different.

Keunert -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 4:14:28 PM)

i am not convinced. once Rostov is taken the front line length explodes. not necesseraly a good thing for the defender: up to september at least you have the losses of the opening turns still hurting you. and with initiative on its side the axis can concentrate on it's targets: rail connection north/south and oil fields.

did you pbem the game into winter? how did it turn out?

wallas -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 5:19:42 PM)



My take on the southern front is that the key is to hold the railroads going south east through the rough terrain south of Voroshilovgrad.

I agree but the problem is any german with a brain will panzer push in the clear steppes North of the dneiper, and unhinge your defence south of the river.

LiquidSky -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 5:45:34 PM)

Rostov is easy to defend. But it is also easy to be outflanked.

There are only two rail lines that lead into the Caucaus. One goes through Rostov....the other goes through Stalingrad. But you can attack along the roads in between them to cut Rostov off. And if the rail line to Rostov is cut, its game over Rostov. The units will either retreat, or stay and die out of supply. So what happens is you will put a large army in Rostov that does nothing, but wait to retreat into the caucaus. I think it is better to minimize the units/defenses and try and entice the axis into attacking it. Better they lose 10k infantry taking it early, then nothing taking it later.

I think it is silly to try and build divisions when the front line is screaming for replacements. I mean, you *can* if you want, but how are you going to get them men? You could disband some stuff, I suppose, but at 30 steps of infantry a turn, and losses that at least equal that if not exceed it every turn, it seems rather pointless.

You do, however, get an awful lot of divisions as reinforcements....which can be thought of as "production".

As for the North, I feel (and I play the Germans) that attacking along the North edge is non-productive. The edge works to the defenders advantage, as the Russians can just pile along it as well...and as the russians, would you rather the Germans were fighting to gain Millerowo/Stalingrad/Rostov and threatening the Caucaus? Or fighting over useless territory? Even if the Germans get to Saratov, it will just be a worse Stalingrad, with the Volga protecting its flanks. (FUN fact: There are only TWO bridges over the Volga: Astrakan, and Saratov)...(Another Fun Fact: In winter, the AP cost to cross a river is ZERO)

The Caucaus...hmm...I strongly believe that the Russians should just give up the Caucaus, and retreat down to the mountain passes and River... Supply costs to move through mountain hexes is PROHIBITED, so the Germans need those narrow plug them up with armies. You only have to keep them out until winter, when all those
rivers cease to exist along the front.

Which should leave most of the actual fighting in the center.

wallas -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 6:23:09 PM)


I think it is silly to try and build divisions when the front line is screaming for replacements.

Could not agree more. The only thing the soviets really need is more front, and army HQ's, but again most of there HQ on map only have about 1500 staff out of a max of 2000 so even thats a tough call.

James Ward -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/16/2012 7:07:10 PM)

^ The Soviets need bodies. They generally have plenty of units.

schmolywar -> RE: How to: Soviets (10/18/2012 2:34:36 PM)


In both games the northern flank was easily countered by the germans. You can only run so much towards Saratov before the no step rule kills your movement. Its not turning into another Stalingrad.

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