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RE: D21 - A different approach

 
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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/11/2010 3:18:27 PM   
Abnormalmind


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The map displays the situation at the start of turn 137. The storms started last turn, and now it is mud season. If last year is any indication of the future, the storms and mud will last 10 turns. 90%+ of all units are in reorg and combat values are greatly reduced.

There's been considerable action since turn 130, 26 Sep 1942. AGS pressed onwards to capture Stalino and start a siege of Voroshilovgrad. The rail lines from Dnepropetro to the battle line are short and AGS has a good supply line. AGS is holding up well. The Romanians and Hungarians are backed up by German infantry and several panzer divisions.

The Soviets launched numerous assaults, some successful, around Saratov. The Germans and Italians are within 10kms of the city, and the Italian army is leading the assault from the north.

Panzer Armee East performed the "Swinging Gate Maneuver." Six German gebirgsjäger divisions and the Romanian mountain division swept southwest from the Ural Mountains while dozens of German mechanized divisions advanced along the entire front. Panzer Armee East secured the "next" rail line and blocked the very last Soviet supply point from the east! Orenburg fell after a brief battle. Unfortunately, most of the Soviet air fleet departed before the 29th Panzer Grenadier Division captured the city.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/12/2010 5:00:54 PM   
Abnormalmind


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November 22nd, 1942 - Soviet Winter Offensive Begins

Catching the Axis a little off guard, the Soviets launch their 42’ winter offensive. The weather only recently started to cool, and most of the rivers and lakes are not cold enough to freeze. The Soviets have built up forces along the Saratov and Far Eastern fronts.

The Axis forces were conducting a small offensive push west of Orenburg, but with the start of the Soviet offensive, the spearhead will pull back 40-50kms to a forest that is more defensible.

OKH ordered a daring maneuver along the eastern shores of the Ural River. The 18th and 19th Panzer Divisions assisted by the 2nd Geb Div advanced on Uralsk to blow the bridge over the Ural River (super river). Then, 17th Panzer was ordered south along the eastern shores of the Ural River to strike at Guryev and the Emba Oil Fields. The disruption of this Soviet resource is a priority. If 17th Pz is able to wrestle Guryev from the Soviet defenders, their orders are to hold it at all costs. Reinforcements will be sent at the conclusion of the Soviet 42’ offensive.

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Post #: 62
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/13/2010 3:19:45 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 157 - Guryev

19th Panzer Division is in trouble. The PO sent two engineers across the Ural River. The PO even brought heavy artillery to shell the 19th Panzer...

The situation further north by Uralsk is worse for the 18th Panzer Division. Three Panzer Grenadier Divisions were ordered to rescue the 18th Panzer. The 2nd Geb Division was destroyed before the grenadiers arrived. The 18th Panzer is at 50% strength and trying to limp away.

Soviet shock is still 120% for their 42' winter offensive.

< Message edited by Abnormalmind -- 2/13/2010 5:18:28 AM >

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Post #: 63
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/13/2010 5:24:35 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 158 - Guryev

The PO brings more to finish the job. I do not think the division will survive the Soviet's assault phase. And there is no chance for relief. Escape seems impossible.


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Post #: 64
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/14/2010 2:17:49 AM   
Abnormalmind


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3 Jan 1943 - Turn 161

The Soviet's 1942 Winter Offensive near Saratov ended quickly. The three ranks of German defenders backed up by several korps of artillery made for a sufficient barrier. During the winter offensive, the rivers froze and German shock went back to 100. Instead of waiting for a Soviet advance over the rivers, the northern Axis forces lunged forward, made contact, and dug in. The huge SS Wiking Division was able to drive back several reduced Soviet formations, resulting in the salient southwest of Saratov.

The Soviet counter attack towards Orenburg was remarkable. Axis forces finally stopping the Soviet Guards only 40 kms south of the city. GDK and 8 infantry divisions were railed to Orenburg to stem the Soviet advance. The Soviet guard divisions with a 120 shock bonus are not to be taken lightly.

The German 19th Panzer Division made an escape into the netherworld and is trying to get back to Orenburg through horrible terrain. There's no road, only damage rail along the long path back to the front.

The goals for 1943 are thin and a little complex, which I don't like. The first goal marked by the number 1 is to capture the rail junction southeast of Saratov. This is the only rail line remaining that feeds the Soviet's northeastern forces that are squared off against Panzer Armee East. I believe that reducing the supply to the Soviet forces may force them to back peddle into the Caspian Depression.

The second goal is to liberate Sevastopol and Kerch. This will eliminate two of the four remaining Soviet supply points.

The third and final objective is to capture Rostov and drive east to the Caspian Sea whereby bisecting the Soviet forces and blocking the remaining two supply points. The Caucasus are to be sealed. This will prevent supplies reaching the Soviet forces to the north which includes Stalingrad.

Supply to the Caspian Sea is a major issue. There's no linear route from Rostov and a large portion of the advance will cross over arid terrain. The PO may detect a threatened supply line and crush the spearhead. So it's anyones guess how this is going to play out.

On the bright side, the Axis forces just received their first shipment of Tiger I's.

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Post #: 65
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/14/2010 5:38:56 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Change of Plan

Nixed the Sevastopol offensive
Nixed the cut towards the Caspian Sea offensive

Saratov forces will continue east and south from the rail fork.
The Finnish Army with support will drive at Stalingrad's northern defenses. This will create a pocket of Soviets to the north.
There are Soviet units running amok in the Depression, but Axis forces will seek and destroy.

I like this plan much better. It's simple and I don't have to count on the Romanians to capture Sevastopol...

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Post #: 66
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/14/2010 5:15:44 PM   
Abnormalmind


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13 Jan 1943 - Turn 164

The Finnish Army takes the lead in the assault towards the northern defenses of Stalingrad. The 503rd Heavy Panzer Battalion with its newly manufactured Tigers are close behind. There are approximately 9 Finnish infantry divisions all in regimental formation, which is normal. Whereas, the German infantry divisions lose proficiency when split into regiments. The German infantry packs more punch but lacks the combat versatility when compared to the Finns. Although, the Finns rarely overrun anything. As you can see, German units are intermixed in support of the Finnish Army.

Not everyday we get to see Finns leading the assault on Stalingrad!

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Post #: 67
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/15/2010 6:11:14 PM   
Abnormalmind


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7 Feb 1943 - Turn 171

The Soviet Saratov front collapsed. Axis forces are pressing forward from Stalingrad to Orenburg. The Volga is frozen, and Axis forces are crossing over to the east side to reinforce the forces already pressuring the Soviets.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/15/2010 6:21:32 PM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 171 - Stalingrad

Axis and allies are a go for the siege of Stalingrad. The Finnish army is advancing slowly towards the western gates of Stalingrad. The Italian army is conducting quick, short advancements. The forces northwest in the retrofit area are recovering from the hard push south from Saratov. Axis forces are well into the Caspian Depression. A major pocket is forming to the northeast outside of the visual range of this map.

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Post #: 69
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/15/2010 6:36:41 PM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 171 - STAVKA Northern Armies

The map displays turn 171 as the Uralsk - Orenburg pocket starts to form. The badland terrain stops mechanized units and provides near 0 supply, if not 0. German infantry press east to create the pocket while Axis forces press southwards from the Uralsk/Orenburg line.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/22/2010 3:34:11 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 181 - 14 March 1943

The weather is starting to warm, which will turn the landscape into a muddy mess in 4-7 turns. The Axis forces are slowly grinding the Soviets back towards Rostov. Stalingrad is encircled, but it has a supply depot which has to be destroyed. It's going to take a few turns to crack Stalingrad. The Soviet northeastern armies are decimated and pocketed. Panzer Armee East is making its way south along the Ural River to re-take Guryev.

The Caucuses are sealed. There's no chance of a Soviet breakout. On the other hand, the Soviet troop concentration is becoming denser. The Axis forces are suffering evaporations more frequently because the shock value is now set to 100. There are no more advantages for them!

The Allied forces start landing in Sicily in July. I expect the Italian forces will withdraw. I'm confident that the Axis will have sufficient manpower to continue the assault on the Caucuses.

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Post #: 71
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/22/2010 3:38:31 AM   
Panama


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Stick a fork in it. I think it's done.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/22/2010 3:43:42 AM   
Silvanski


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Interesting AAR... Get into the Caucasus  and you'll have the campaign wrapped up


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Post #: 73
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/23/2010 10:09:58 PM   
Abnormalmind


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After 180+ turns, I'm going to finish it!

The Soviets started back peddling and the mud season hit. Panzer Armee East is streaming its way back to the Stalingrad sector in preparation for a huge push into the Caucuses. Rostov and Stalingrad fell. Stalingrad's defenses were reduced to a heaping pile of debris after 15 Axis artillery units pummeled the defenders for several turns. The supply depot retreated in a particularly bad direction.

Writing about the retreat algorithm, I hope it is addressed in 3.4. I've experienced consistently strange "retreats" by Soviet forces.

I'll post a map after the mud season ends and before the big push.

Before the mud season started, the Soviets commenced bridge blowing operations to slow the avalanche of Axis forces.

The Axis air force is humbled by the Soviet air fleet. For a while, the air superiority ratio was often 30 vs 30. Right before the mud season, the ratio was a staggering 80 to 21 in the Soviet's favor. Shelling their airbases and evaporating their fighter squadrons does nothing! Axis forces will have to capture every airbase on the map...

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Post #: 74
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:38:02 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - 19 May 1943

Axis forces are driving south into the Caucuses. The goal is pretty obvious ... finish off the Soviets. Axis allies have pulled off of the front lines, and now occupy rear areas. This drive is manned by the Germans. The advance will follow the rail lines southwards.

Soviet forces are blowing bridges and digging in, which isn't a common tactic throughout this scenario. The Soviet air fleet is making life on the Germans pretty harsh, but there is a plan. A simple one. Take the Soviet airbases!

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Post #: 75
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:38:47 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - Air Briefing

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Post #: 76
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:40:38 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - Replacement Schedule

Axis forces are looking fine. There are a lot of replacement planes, just not enough units to use them all! German heavy infantry took the brunt of the losses, but at the moment, there are several turns of replacement available. German armor is doing quite well. Axis allies have huge number of replacements, except for the Finns.

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Post #: 77
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:44:35 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - Caucuses

German units are two deep in some places. The front will narrow, and the concentration of Soviet and German units will continue to increase. The huge SS divisions are nearly unstoppable when fully supplied. German mechanized divisions shoot the gaps, create a pocket, then German infantry fall in to replace the mechanized units. Rinse and repeat. The panzers and panzer grenadiers are great for quick maneuvers, but don't have the staying power of the German infantry division.

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Post #: 78
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:48:25 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - Stalingrad and Axis Allies

The Hungarians (green), Finnish (olive) and Italians (yellow) are stationed well behind the front lines. There are reserve German infantry divisions all over the map, including Moscow. At any moment's notice, there are at least six German infantry divisions that are able to rail into a hot spot. But for now, I've decided to populate the map and control it entirely.

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Post #: 79
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 5:51:13 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200 - Eastern Caucuses

As you can see from the map, the German forces are quite formidable. There are several divisions waiting on the north side of the Volga River. There are German divisions all over the place. Whenever a unit gets low on supplies, it's pulled from the line and replaced... fun stuff!

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Post #: 80
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 6:07:38 AM   
larryfulkerson


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what does the Axis supply situation look like down there?

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 7:03:51 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 200

Supply is 27 on the rail lines. It's good in the spring/summer/fall.

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Post #: 82
RE: D21 - A different approach - 2/27/2010 8:15:12 PM   
desert


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Ha, Utorrent. I just noticed that.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 3/2/2010 3:47:02 AM   
Abnormalmind


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Turn 207: 13 Jun 1943

It's been harder than expected. Operation Citadel isn't a great theater option, but it gives the Axis 120 shock for 4-5 turns. However... there's about 10 turns of 80 shock afterwards. In any event, Axis command fired up Operation Citadel for the big push into the Caucuses. The 120 shock helped the Romanians break through the Perekop Isthmus defenses. The Romanians are now on the door step of Sevastopol, and that's where they are going to stay for the next 10 turns....

The Hungarians re-entered the fray during Operation Citadel on the Axis far left and were pushing towards the Kerch Straight.

The only rail lines available are along the eastern and western sides of the Caucuses. The map displays turn 200 front lines in yellow and turn 207 front lines in cyan. The underlying map is from the start of turn 207. The Axis have huge reserves on both sides of the front.

Maikop fell turn 206... which was great news for the Axis. The +5 supply (and -5 supply for the Soviets) will greatly aid this final drive.

Grozny was out of reach. The Soviets are in a strong defensive mode. Many of the Soviet units are fortified, in excellent supply, and putting up a heck of a fight. They are also blowing bridges anytime the Axis get too close. It's going to be a tough grind-fest to the end.

I have decided the only way I can win the air war is to capture Soviet airbases, which I have been doing, with reckless abandonment. Hopefully soon, the Axis bombers will start flying again and this struggle for domination will come to an end. After all this, the Axis can easily rail 40+ divisions to France for a little R&R...

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Post #: 84
RE: D21 - A different approach - 3/3/2010 3:05:26 AM   
Panama


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Abnormalmind

After all this, the Axis can easily rail 40+ divisions to France for a little R&R...


Just in time for Sicily.

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RE: D21 - A different approach - 4/1/2010 3:29:42 AM   
sPzAbt653


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At turn 236 Mr. Abnormalmind (Patrick) sent me the save file and I concurred that poor Elmer had no shot at a recovery (I had been holding out hope) and there was no game left. Patrick had overrun almost all reconstitution hexes and almost all reinforcement hexes and had inflicted severe losses on the Soviets. In Rifle squads alone, the Soviets had lost almost 310,000, which at the current replacement rate of a little over 500 per turn would take over 600 turns to replace. Ouch!

Looking at the replacements and losses from this one isn't a very good gauge, as Patrick didn't have to experience an offensive failure followed by violent Soviet counterattacks that pushed him back to Germany. But I don't think it was a wealth of equipment that caused Patrick to have such success, probably it can be attributed to proper planning and execution.

As this was our first experience with these far reaches of the map, we have made a few changes that are reasonable and accurate. The Urals were tightened up a little and a few areas were added where Elmer might get some reconstituted units, some reinforcement hexes were relocated, and some 'off map' airbases were added for the Soviets.

Congratulations to Mr. Abnormalmind for puttin' a whoopin' on Elmer! Thanks for all the time and effort you've put in so far.




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RE: D21 - A different approach - 10/9/2010 2:46:46 PM   
fulcrum28


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very interesting AAR. was it played using 3.4?

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Post #: 87
RE: D21 - A different approach - 10/9/2010 6:46:43 PM   
sPzAbt653


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No, it was not using 3.4.

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Post #: 88
RE: D21 - A different approach - 10/10/2010 5:57:21 AM   
fulcrum28


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thank you for your reply. did you use some graphics mod? The graphics look very different. Im using 3.2, just from CD. no graphics mods added. Maybe Do graphics quality for maps and icons depend on the scenario?

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Post #: 89
RE: D21 - A different approach - 10/10/2010 7:24:45 PM   
sPzAbt653


Posts: 7719
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From: east coast, usa
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Yes, custom graphics. Be sure to follow the 'File Install' instructions.

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Post #: 90
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