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ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter

 
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ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 5:15:18 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I haven't played the original ATD in a long time, so I'm really not sure how this will go.

We've finished turn 4 and I'm now waiting for turn 5. I'll post this at a turn/post rate.

I consider myself to be a capable defender in most scenarios, but in this case the initial deployment of Soviet forces is quite poor and even though the strength values of individual German units are not that high, there are a number of problems for the Soviets:

-The Germans quickly get a huge tactical shift bonus when attacking from more than 1 hexside. That will mean the Germans will in many cases be able to attack at 8-1 or higher odds.

-The majority of the Soviet tank units only give a tank shock bonus when they're at full strength, it's very important to keep the T-26 and T-34 units alive. Unfortunately, I lost a T-34 unit early as well as the 13th Tank Division which is the only Tank division that doesn't reappear. There are still some T-26 units around, but they're few in number.

-Due to the good odds the Germans tend to get, it's difficult to establish a defensive line as the Soviet forces in the line have a high retreat chance in most terrain types on higher odds.

-The hex triggers for the AO extension of the Soviet reserve forces/the armies on the Eastern side of the map are not all located on logical lines of approach, so you can't rely on the reserves being triggered in time.

-Objectives are worth much more than units, which can be both a problem and a good thing, but it does mean that you have to balance holding a defensive line with holding objectives.
Post #: 1
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 5:18:59 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I'll post screenshots as .jpg's

Turn 1 Axis:



In the northern part of the map, the Axis capture Vitebsk and advance to the north bank of the Dvina, placing several Soviet divisions north of the Dvina out of supply, but as you can see in the Soviet screenshots, the encirclement was weak.

Soviet casualties: 18th Rifle Division, 153rd Rifle Division, the 27th Tank Regiment of the 14 Tank Division as well as the recon battalion of the division, 7th Mechanised Corps recon regiment, the 186 Rifle Division's AT battalion and the 62 Rifle Corps HQ.



In the center, the Germans move closer to Orsha, but are somewhat overextended. The Germans ignore the crossing at Skhlov for the moment, so the 4th Army artillery regiment is still alive, which in turn means the HQ's still there too (HQ's without any units to command are automatically KIA'ed and won't reappear).

Soviet casualties: 110 Rifle Division, 4th Army.



In the South, the Germans move closer to Mogilev and the Dnepr.

Soviet casualties:

A Rifle regiment of the 50th Rifle Division and the 8 Airborne Brigade belonging to 4th Airborne Corps.

Turn 1 Soviets:

The Soviet strategy for the moment is to counterattack, try to cut off the supply link of overextended German units and to try and hold the line along the major rivers, even if that means units have to die where they stand.



In the north, Soviet forces retake Vitebsk and cut the supply link of several German units.

German casualties: 20th Panzer Division's recon battalion and one of its Panzer Grenadier regiments. 18th Motorised Division recon battalion.



Around Orsha, Soviet forces cut the link between the German spearhead and the rest of the German forces.

German casualties:

17th Panzer Division's recon battalion. 18th Panzer Division's mechanized Panzer Grenadier regiment, recon battalion and Pionier battalion. A motorised regiment of the 29th Motorised Division as well as the AT battalion. A 2nd Panzergruppe FlaK battalion.



At the bottom edge of the screenshot, Soviet forces move across the Dnepr to destroy 2 German units. The garrison of Mogilev is too weak, I should've made it stronger, but luckily the weakness of the garrison didn't cause too many problems as the German breakthrough attempt was slow as later updates will show.

German casualties:

10th Motorised Division Pionier and AT battalions.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/11/2010 6:56:24 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 6:49:03 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I'll post a more detailed strategy when the situation requires it, but the first few turns have been fairly simple.

Turn 2 Axis:



In the North, the Germans have restored their supply line leading north and have recaptured Vitebsk. Aside from that, not much is happening.

Soviet casualties: the two Tank Regiments of the 48th Tank Division, a 22nd Army artillery regiment and the AT battalion of the 170th Rifle Division.



In the center, the Germans have killed a number of my forces that attacked them last turn, dug in their forward troops (which basically means the Soviets can't attack them, as they get a +2 shift and 60% defensive strength bonus) and have moved into the Shklov hex.

Soviet casualties: Two Rifle Regiments and the recon battalion of the 144th Rifle Division, two Rifle Regiments, the AT, artillery and AA battalions of the 172nd Rifle Division, the AT battalion of the 233rd Rifle Division, two Rifle Regiments of the 73rd Rifle Division, two Rifle Regiments of the 64th Rifle Division, the three Rifle Regiments of the 161st Rifle Division, a 13th Tank Division Tank Regiment, a Tank Regiment and the T-34 battalion of the 1st Mechanised Division, 16th Army Recon regiment, 100th Rifle Division artillery regiment.

Heavy losses, but I'd say it was worth it. Sadly, 13th Tank Division units are permanently KIA'ed.



In the South, the Germans have moved across the Dnepr and have captured Mogilev, although one of my stacks is still in the city.

Soviet casualties: a Rifle Regiment of the 50th Rifle Division, 13th Army engineer regiment, two Rifle Regiments of the 121st Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 151st Rifle Division and the AA regiment of the 24th Rifle Division.

Turn 2 Soviets:



In the North, Soviet forces cut the supply line of the troops north of the Dvina again, but don't kill anything. Soviet forces dig in next to Vitebsk.



In the center, the Soviets counterattack north of Orsha and stabilize the line at Orsha.

German casualties: a Panzer Grenadier regiment of the 18th Panzer Division (only its tank battalion hasn't been killed yet), a 7th Panzer Division FlaK and Panzer battalion, and a Panzer battalion of the 20th Panzer Division.



In the South, Soviet forces form a line south of Mogilev and at the bridge to the east, to cause the Germans a high OP penalty due to the adjacent Soviet units. Soviet forces also cut the major road leading to Mogilev at two points.

As can be seen in the upper part of the screenshots, Soviet forces counterattack and destroy the German units in the Shklov hex.

German casualties: a heavy artillery battalion of 143 Arko, a Panzer Grenadier regiment and the AT battalion of the 3rd Panzer Division, and a 23rd Panzerkorps and 47th Panzerkorps Pionier battalion.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/11/2010 11:51:28 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 7:19:31 PM   
JudgeDredd


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ohh. An AAR - cool.

There are some screwed up looking frontlines there!

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 7:30:28 PM   
ComradeP

 

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The Soviets don't really have the forces to stay around and fight, which means that I'm in some trouble on turn 5, but VP's for KIA'ed units are around 1000 for both sides. At the end of turn 4, the Soviets had lost about 140 units and the Germans 23. Soviet losses are high, but many forces come back again, and many are doomed anyway. There's a strong Soviet presence around Orsha, and he has lost a fair number of Panzer forces (almost the entire 18th Panzer and assorted units of other divisions) and attrition has been heavy for him, many of his formations have at the least used up their timed steps and some are at half strength. Of course, some parts of the Soviet frontline are "held" by a single regiment.

I'm not entirely unhappy. The situation around Mogilev is still looking good, but he'll probably pocket Orsha and the forces there in turn 5. There's basically nothing between German spearheads and Smolensk due to the AO's, but forces are moving up. Nothing's at Velizh in the north either, but again forces are moving there.

Whenever I update this thread, I'll post the turn screenshots first and add the commentary later, so I can look at the screenshots whilst typing the commentary.

I'll add turn 3 later today and turn 4 when I can check the replay on turn 5.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/11/2010 7:31:54 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 11:10:48 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I've taken the Soviet turn screenshots in the next turn's replay (by taking a screenshot at the start of the reply), so not everything is where it was at the end of the turn as the game doesn't show everything. I'll try to remember to take screenshots at the end of the actual Soviet turn starting on turn 5.

There have been no Axis casualties on turn 3.

By the way, if there's any feature of the game you want me to show, like the Off Map Area (OMA) screen, just ask.

Turn 3 Axis:



In the North, the Axis cleaned up their supply situation again and advanced a bit. The Vitebsk front is still locked in a stalemate.

Soviet casualties: a 22nd Army artillery regiment, the artillery of the 179th Rifle Division, two Rifle Regiments of the 186th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment and the artillery of the 174th Rifle Division.



The Germans don't move a lot closer to Orsha, but the counterattack to my counterattack is brutal.

Soviet casualties: the two Tank Regiments and recon battalion of the 17th Tank Division, the remaining Tank Regiment and the Motorised Rifle Regiment of the 13th Tank Division (division's gone), the 16th Army independent Tank Regiment and Motorised Rifle Regiment, a Rifle Regiment of the 73rd Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 229th Rifle Division, the three Rifle Regiments of the 233 Rifle Division (they come back) and the Engineer battalion, the three Rifle Regiments of the 152nd Rifle Division (they come back), the remaining regiment of the 172nd Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 144 Rifle Division.



Some minor attacks by the Germans, they're mostly expanding their bridgehead over the Dnepr.

Soviet casualties: a Rifle Regiment, the AT and recon battalions of the 100th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 187th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 148th Rifle Division and a Rifle Regiment of the 137th Rifle Division.

Turn 3 Soviets:



Not much to do, I'm cutting the supplies of the spearhead for one last time. I attacked an exposed Motorised Regiment, but it survived two can't retreat rolls and was left with 1 step.



After the heavy losses north of Orsha, I don't really have a lot of guys left so I'm pulling back a bit.



As you can see, the Mogilev front is barely moving, which is good for me, especially as he's holding the front with Panzer formations.

The 100th Rifle Division Rifle Regiment you see in the central part of the screenshot is actually in a stack with an NKVD unit and some other units. The Germans killed the stack on turn 5, using both Panzer Shock attacks. The brave defenders inflicted 8 step losses on the Germans. I'll probably miss the NKVD unit and maybe the others, but their deaths were not in vain.

On turn 4, the Germans made a thrust to the Northeast to try and create a pocket at Orsha. As I didn't really have anything available to both stop the thrust and protect Orsha, there will probably be a pocket around Orsha on turn 5 with a fair number of divisions in it. I'll probably post the turn 4 screenshots tomorrow, when my opponent has send me turn 5.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/11/2010 11:39:07 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 11:45:22 PM   
jjdenver

 

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Can you pls throw in an overall screenshot ever 4-6 turns? Just the little minimap in the top right if nothing else.

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/11/2010 11:48:23 PM   
ComradeP

 

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To show the entire frontline, or? The screenshots cover the entire frontline at the moment, but when the front starts to move quickly I'll take a screenshot of the map.

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/12/2010 1:21:38 AM   
henri51


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Ahhhh.... at last an AAR. Perhaps this will draw attention away from the discussion about price

Interesting AAR, continue.

Henri

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/14/2010 9:15:49 PM   
Noakesy

 

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Come on Pieter, three days with no update is hardly fair Nice AAR, which is good for me as I've yet to play this scenario and it looks huge and complicated. Is it relatively straight forward to pile into Vitebsk within the first turn? Casualties are immense again (which I find to be a theme of the Kharkov series).

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/14/2010 10:17:00 PM   
henri51


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Noakesy

Come on Pieter, three days with no update is hardly fair Nice AAR, which is good for me as I've yet to play this scenario and it looks huge and complicated. Is it relatively straight forward to pile into Vitebsk within the first turn? Casualties are immense again (which I find to be a theme of the Kharkov series).


I have only played the first move, and although I did not occupy Vitebsk, it belonged to me at the beginning of move 2! This may be due to a change of ownership due to control of adjacent hexes.Given the German areas of operation, it is not possible to "pile" into Vitebsk, but you can do a pretty good job of clearing the way for move 2.

I could not get adjacent to Orsha nor Mogilev, again mostly due to AO limitations.

Henri

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/15/2010 2:12:22 PM   
ComradeP

 

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quote:

Come on Pieter, three days with no update is hardly fair Nice AAR, which is good for me as I've yet to play this scenario and it looks huge and complicated. Is it relatively straight forward to pile into Vitebsk within the first turn? Casualties are immense again (which I find to be a theme of the Kharkov series).


I had the time to play the turns, but the days were over before I could update the AAR.

We're now at turn 6, and I should have turn 4 and 5 up at the end of the day, and possibly turn 6 too.

As to Vitebsk: there are two things you can as the Soviets do if the Germans capture it with a recon unit, which is what's likely to happen if there's a lot of artillery residue around and other units can't get into the hex.

1) You can kill the recon unit and move in with some of your tanks or a recon unit, which is what I did. The tanks will die but the attack will buy time and will require the Germans to remove you from the city the hard way.

2) Kill the recon unit but don't capture the city. The Germans will get points for a turn 1 capture, but you get replacements on turn 2.

-

As to losses: I've lost about 180 units by the end of turn 6, mostly because I counterattacked in the first few turns. And although my losses are high, the difference in unit KIA VP's is only around 300 points, or 4 German infantry regiments.

There are basically three options you have for the first few Soviet turns:

1) Counterattack. Knowing that most of your units are doomed anyway, try to take down as many Germans with you as possible in the first few turns.

The good part of this approach is that it will usually significantly weaken if not destroy the German Panzer and Motorised formations you're facing, as the Germans get only a handful of infantry divisions to soak up losses in the first few turns.

Although my losses have been high, many German formations have at the least lost their timed step and a number of Panzer Grenadier formations are at half strength, not to mention that 18th Panzer more or less bought the farm.

Another (very) good part is that you don't give the Germans all the initiative, which is what happens when you stick to a defensive line or start pulling back. In my case, the Germans have the initiative in the north but they're not getting anywhere in the south.

The bad part of the strategy is that you end up with fewer losses to hold Smolensk and other objectives, which is why a large part of my northern flank is flapping in the breeze. On the other hand, my losses have been mostly in the center, so my northern flank would've been under pressure to begin with.

2) Retreat to a line along the Dnepr and the minor river running south from Vitebsk. In this case, it's more or less crucial that the Germans capture Vitebsk on turn 1, as you need the replacements. Although the Soviets lack men, you do have enough men to form a very thin line at the rivers which will at the least keep the Germans busy for a while.

The good part of this strategy is that it will basically stop a German push in the south as they won't be getting across the Dnepr between Orsha and Mogilev. You can build a reasonably strong defensive line north of Orsha too as long as you place detachments in front of the line (there's no river there to hide behind). The German push in the north and center will be slowed, and at Vitebsk probably halted because you have city hexes on your side of the river and the Germans need to cross the Dvina to get to you.

The bad part is that, when the Germans break through into the rear, you're in trouble as you can't move your units back quickly enough due to zones of control and German interdiction. This is less of a problem between Orsha and Mogilev and, after looking at the initial forces, I do believe that stopping a crossing between Orsha and Mogilev is entirely possible.

With this strategy, you're forcing the Germans to focus on three points: the land area north of Orsha, the area north of the Dvina and the area from Mogilev to the Southern edge of the map. You have plenty of forces in the South, which was and still is somewhat surprising to me and my opponent will be in for a few surprises in the next few turns too, but the area north of the Dvina between Velizh and Nevel is impossible to hold, so eventually the Germans will outflank you through Velizh. If the Germans capture Velizh and possibly Mstislavl in the south whilst your troops are at the rivers, it's game over.

3) The option the official AAR details: keep pulling back and lure the Germans in. You preserve forces, but you give the Germans the initiative and when you start running in this scenario, you won't stop until you reach the Eastern edge of the map. All of your local counterattacks will also have to move west into German ZOC. This is the typical DB series defensive strategy, but as the combat is so deadly in the Kharkov engine, a defensive line is only temporary and has the weakness of having to constantly pull back due to lack of forces.

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/15/2010 2:29:08 PM   
Noakesy

 

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Thanks Pieter, sounds like you are having and excellent game. Look forward to the updates as and when they are available. I'm due to take on Strax early next week for my first foray into the game, should be good.

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/15/2010 8:50:17 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Turn 4 Axis:

(Permanent) Soviet casualties: an AA brigade of Western Front, a 13th Army Engineer regiment, a Rifle Regiment of the 50th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 121st Rifle Division, two Rifle Regiments of the 100th Rifle Division, the AT and AA battalions as well as the artillery regiment of the 214th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 98th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 112th Rifle Division, the 178th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment and the engineer battalion of the 174th Rifle Division, the recon battalion of the 151st Rifle Division, a NKVD regiment.



In the North, the Germans are mostly trying to sort out their supply mess and killing Soviet blocking units. The front at Vitebsk remains more or less frozen stiff. By my count, my opponent has elements of 4 Panzer divisions and 4 motorised divisions north of the Dvina. In my opinion, most of that strength could be used elsewhere and isn't needed to clean out my motley collection of Rifle Regiments.



In the center, the Germans move into the void I left at Orsha.



In the South, the Germans have removed some of my blocking units from the major road Southwest of Mogilev and have, through sheer overpowering force, killed a stack including a NKVD Regiment at the top of the screenshot.

Turn 4 Soviets:



I'm withdrawing from the river line, as otherwise German motorised elements would cross the Dvina East of my position and trap all the forces at the river. My remaining units north of the Dvina are mostly trying to get into the worst terrain possible, trying to switch the hex control of as many hexes as possible in the process.



In the center, I'm forming a pocket around Orsha. I could've done this differently, but I was expecting on Orsha to hold out for a few more turns. However, I should've placed one more combat unit in the hex.



In the South, recently arrived Soviet reserve forces and forces already present in the area counterattack and destroy two German units. The dug in units on the right edge of the screenshot sadly can't travel further due to AO restrictions. The AO's are Mother Russia's enemy in this scenario, and the friends of the Third Reich.

I've moved back units from Mogilev, as I wasn't sure what was moving in the South.

German casualties: a Panzer and Panzerjaeger battalion of the 10th Panzer Division.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/15/2010 9:28:12 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/15/2010 9:15:51 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Turn 5 Axis:

(Permanent) Soviet casualties: two 13th Army artillery regiments, the artillery regiment of the 50th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 132nd Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment and Engineer battalion of the 137th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment 160th Rifle Division, a 16th Army AA battalion and artillery regiment, 20 Army artillery regiment, a Rifle Regiment of the 174th Rifle division, a Rifle Regiment of the 186 Rifle Division, a Motorised Rifle Regiment of the 219th Mechanised Division, a Rifle Regiment of the 53rd Rifle Division.



In the North, the Germans have crossed the Dvina as predicted. Had my line been at the river now, it would be doomed.



The Germans capture Orsha in a number of costly attacks and pocket the forces surrounding Orsha, destroying several artillery regiments to the East. I had hoped Orsha would hold out until turn 6, but alas. There were about 40 units in the pocket at the start of the turn, it will take the Germans some time to clean the pocket up and the regimental Guards units and the Tank Division's units come back. I was hoping the 46th Rifle Division wouldn't be trapped, but it will take a while before it dies.



In the South, the Germans hit the stacks I had send to hit their exposed units last turn, killing several of my units. I'm not really sure what happened in this case. My adjacent steps should have made sure he didn't get a shift modifier from one and possibly two of those hexes, but he still got 12-1 results in the attacks. The combat result screen isn't really helpful as all arrows are green in the attack, regardless of whether there is actually a tactical shift provided by attacking from that hexside. Ah well, I lost more guys than I thought I would in any case, but the losses were not too heavy.

The Germans advance across the river at the Southern bridge ("below" the screenshot), but they're slow and careful.

Turn 5 Soviets:



In the North, Soviet units withdraw further if they can. I need to keep pulling back and hope those forces don't get encircled.



I shorten the line in the pocket and, East of the edge of the screenshot, shore up the approach to Smolensk. The first reserves arrived at Smolensk.



My attack across the river rolled a poor roll so the Germans got lucky and the non-combat stack survived mostly.

Soviet units move back to the Mogilev area and pull back a bit at the central part of the screenshot, hoping the Germans will move some units in to kill the Rifle Regiment of the 167th Rifle Division. As a tease for turn 6: the Germans did move units in and I'm currently thinking of the best way to kill or seriously weaken as many as possible.

German casualties: 9th Corps Bridging unit.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/15/2010 9:29:05 PM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/16/2010 11:45:10 PM   
Def Zep


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Excellent AAR, ComradeP. Very enjoyable to read.

quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

...after looking at the initial forces, I do believe that stopping a crossing between Orsha and Mogilev is entirely possible.
...
You have plenty of forces in the South, which was and still is somewhat surprising to me ...


The reason for this, is the strategy employed by Zhukov & Timoshenko to slow (and subsequently stop) the Blitzkrieg, developed in the STAVKA wargame trials of early 1941. The force around Mogilev is an Army, under the direct command of Timoshenko, specifically raised to counterattack north into the flank of the German spearhead crossing the "land-bridge" to Smolensk, to isolate the spearhead while futher forces are mobilized outside of Moscow to eliminate it.

The strategy was only partially successful; the Russians did not have enough time between approval of the War Plan in February 1941 and the invasion in June to mobilize and equip the intended/required forces. However, Timoshenko's Army did force the Germans to halt at Smolensk and turn south (towards Kiev) to eliminate it and clear their flanks, before any drive on Moscow proper could be attempted. In so doing, the Russians saved Moscow, and bought enough time to evacuate a good amount of their industrial base to the Urals.

This was documented initially (in the West) by Brian I. Fugate in his book, "Operation Barbarossa" (Presidio, 1984; ISBN: 0-89141-197-6; basically a printing of his doctoral thesis). Later reworked employing Russian source documents by him & Lev Dvoretsky, and re-published as "Thunder on the Dnepr" (Presidio, 1997; ISBN 0-89141-529-7).

The strategy developed by Zhukov & Timoshenko, proven to Stalin in the wargames of January 1941, is the reason the German blitzkrieg failed - not (as is commonly held) "General Winter", or the late start of Operation Barbarossa occasioned by the Balkan campaigns.

< Message edited by Def Zep -- 4/17/2010 12:03:36 AM >

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RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/19/2010 5:00:27 PM   
ComradeP

 

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The battle is starting to get ugly now and it's only turn 7.

My opponent got some lucky good rolls, so my defensive line simply folded in many places. It's really annoying that, even without a single tactical shift bonus, the Germans can easily get 5-1 odds and still utterly wreck a stack. On the other hand, a single German 2 step entrenched battalion with an AT unit in the same hex is more or less invulnerable.

Of course I'll finish the game, but there are times, times like the last turn, where the game feels like the Aryan Supermen edition. As an added touch, Murphy's Law turned up in the form of the retreat routine allowing a Motorised Rifle regiment to retreat to a nearly full stack whilst my second T-34 battalion was stuck somewhere and killed.

The most annoying thing at this point is that it's more or less impossible to get halfway decent odds on anything, primarily because Soviet tank units are currently both underpowered and thus practically worthless whilst the Germans blow everything away with even a handful of guys. Heck, an entire entrenched Rifle Division evaporated after being attacked by a few Pionier battalions.

There's certainly room for some improvements in terms of balance, a -2 shift and 50% or 60% entrenchment bonus and tanks that get tank shock and tank defence at 3 steps would be a good start. A higher refitting chance, say 20% or possibly 30%, for the armies in reserve for the initial 6 or 7 turns, would be nice too.

Unless my army truly implodes, I think I'll manage to get at least a draw, but this scenario is by far the most taxing on my nerves in terms of defence compared to any other scenario with the possibly exception of Typhoon/On to Moscow for Battles in Italy, mostly because the Soviets simply didn't get enough guys in that scenario, a problem which also appears in this scenario.

In the real battle, Soviet losses were (compared to earlier operations) suprisingly low until they became encircled. The Germans don't need encirclements to win this one.

I'll post an update with the screenshots of turn 6 or 7 today or tomorrow.

(in reply to Def Zep)
Post #: 17
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/19/2010 7:21:26 PM   
Noakesy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP
Unless my army truly implodes, I think I'll manage to get at least a draw...


Well, I wish I had situations like that, a sense of battling against Aryan superheroes, but still the chance of a draw unless the army entirely falls to bits.

I'll get my turn off to you tonight or tomorrow ComradeP, that should cheer you up

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 18
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/19/2010 9:42:34 PM   
ComradeP

 

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You know what the weird thing is, I actually had a dream about the turn you'd send me. I was in something like a state of shock due to losing 14 units on turn 1.

Even though I'm also reading books and doing other stuff with my spare time, my mind constantly wanders to the many PBEM's I have going at this point.

As the next few posts/turns should indicate, the Aryan Supermen are taking some hits. I killed over 15 units on turn 7, quite a morale boost. As long as I can send 2 or 3 Rifle Divisions against a single 2 step unit, it will die. It's sad, but that's what's needed in the scenario. I almost killed a HQ but, as a sign that I couldn't have it all, I rolled a 1 and it lived.

The counter will be bloody, but I still have some room for losses. I guess there'll be another encirclement Northwest of Smolensk, not much I can do to prevent it. My encircled forces near Orsha are still there, which means the Axis can't really use the good road directly South of the Dnepr to bring in reinforcements at this point, they have to take a detour.

I'm guessing that my losses will be at around 300 units on turn 10, twice the amount of the official AAR, but I'm giving up less ground in some areas. I also thought of something: perhaps using 1 unit "stacks" that can never comeb ack on the frontline is not always a bad idea, as the Germans will still need at least a bullet to kill them and, statistically speaking, there's a higher chance they take a loss in the actual combat. One of the main problems for the Germans is that overrunning costs a bullet too so, as I can see the Axis supply state in the OOB screen, it's clear many of the units in his spearhead are almost out of bullets.

(in reply to Noakesy)
Post #: 19
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/19/2010 9:54:25 PM   
Noakesy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP
You know what the weird thing is, I actually had a dream about the turn you'd send me. I was in something like a state of shock due to losing 14 units on turn 1.


...that would be called a 'nightmare' surely Pieter, not a 'dream'? Alas, not even one unit in turn 1, but there you go, another 19 to go anyway!

quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP
as I can see the Axis supply state in the OOB screen, it's clear many of the units in his spearhead are almost out of bullets.


I didn't realise you could do that, bit naughy really isn't it?

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 20
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/19/2010 10:00:28 PM   
ComradeP

 

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It might be "naughty", but naturally it only goes for units you can see and both sides can do so. I think of it as a useful feature, something like battlefield intel, rather than as something truly gamey. You could also do something like that the hard way, by counting how often a unit attacked and writing it down, although that will be less accurate.


It also shows the unit's strength with the divisional integrity bonus added if it's in the radius, so you could also use it to check whether a unit is in the integrity radius. Obviously, you can also check that on the map as you can simply check the distance between some of the units of a division on the map.

I'm not entirely sure, but isolated units might always pop up as isolated in the OOB, because the colour of their unit icon changes.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/19/2010 10:02:15 PM >

(in reply to Noakesy)
Post #: 21
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/20/2010 2:44:35 AM   
mariandavid

 

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Many thanks Comrade - your struggles are greatly appreciated and will be put to good use when I use their example to crush my enemies.

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 22
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/20/2010 11:04:16 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I'll try to update a bit more frequently, instead of waiting until I can post the AAR for 2 turns on the same day.

You might've noticed I've switched to describing Soviet "(permanent) casualties" instead of just "casualties" as by now some of my 1 life units have been killed twice and it will give a more accurate picture of my overall force strength. My turn losses will be higher than the permanent losses as a fair number of units has 1 life, but as they return their death isn't necessarily a problem on the long term.

Turn 6 Axis:

(Permanent) Soviet losses: AT battalion of the 24th Rifle Division, the artillery regiment of the 161st Rifle Division, the artillery regiment of the 137 Rifle Division, the 46th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment and the artillery of the 162nd Rifle Division, a Tank Regiment of the 14th Tank Division (one killed earlier, now gone forever), a Rifle Regiment of the 229th Rifle Division, the engineers of the 214th Rifle Division, the AA battalion of the 50th Tank Division, the AT battalion of the 148th Rifle Division, a Rifle Regiment and the engineer battalion of the 167th Rifle Division.



German infantry is putting pressure on my Western flank whilst German mobile elements are trying to encircle me from the Northeast. My opponent has shown little interest in Demidov. The Germans have captured Velizh, my single Motorised Regiment managed to inflict 3 step losses on the attacker before being destroyed (it will come back).



German infantry is also putting pressure on the weak flank in the forested area Northwest of Smolensk, whilst German mobile elements are moving East across the Southern bank of the Dnepr. The Orsha pocket is still there and few serious attacks are made.




Not much is happening on the Southern Front. The advance in the far South is being made by an infantry division, as I discovered on turn 7, but that was pretty obvious as it's so slow.

Turn 6 Soviets:



The screenshot was taken using the replay feature of turn 7, so not all my forces are visible. There are actually two returning divisions north of the 48th Tank Division unit you see in the top right.

Soviet forces move into the Demidov area and continue the retreat of the forces originally around Vitebsk. A few are trapped, but their deaths for the Motherland will surely be heroic.

I'm waiting for my opponent to overextend his front, which is exactly what he did on turn 7 and it cost him.



Soviet forces retreat to more defendable terrain and the forces in the Orsha pocket gather in a few large stacks, which is necessary because some units are already out of supply. Weirdly, out of supply units can still place detachments and entrench.



In the South, Soviet forces attack the German Cavalry Division and some exposed elements of the 10th Panzer Division. Sadly, I couldn't attack the stack of artillery next to the 50th Tank Division Motorised Rifle Regiment.

I expected the Germans to blow most of those forces away, but had hoped that my T34 battalion would stay alive. As you've read by now, that didn't happen.

Axis casualties: two Cavalry/Reiter Regiments, the Bicycle Battalion and the Pionier Battalion of the 1st Cavalry Division (oh happy days, none of them come back), the 24th Panzer Korps AT battalion, a Panzer Grenadier Regiment of the 10th Panzer Division.

I'll post turn 7 tomorrow.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 4/20/2010 11:31:19 PM >

(in reply to mariandavid)
Post #: 23
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/21/2010 4:41:29 AM   
flintlock

 

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Just a quick "thank you" for continuing with this AAR--enjoying following along!

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 24
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/21/2010 4:48:36 PM   
ComradeP

 

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I might post both turn 7 and 8 today. The German response to my counterattacks on turn 7 was brutal.

As the Germans more or less automatically get 12-1 odds against most stacks and also double dice odds, a single attack can easily wipe out an entire division. I've lost 250 units in the game thus far, with 45 lost on turn 8. I don't have a lot to hold Smolensk with, and the Germans have formed 2 small pockets.

Even if the Germans end up with a significant victory, I'm still enjoying playing the scenario with a more offensive minded Soviet strategy instead of simply slowly withdrawing to the East.

Even though I've lost 250 units, casualty VP's are still about the same for both sides currently. I'm guessing the Soviet player in the official AAR had a significant lead in points as he had lost about 100 guys less by turn 10 than I've lost thus far.

I've hidden some forces in his rear area, which will eventually probably walk into an empty Nevel when his forces are mostly East of Smolensk. I'm also considering to try to recapture Mogilev with cavalry in a few turns.

(in reply to flintlock)
Post #: 25
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/21/2010 7:31:30 PM   
Noakesy

 

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quote:

I've hidden some forces in his rear area, which will eventually probably walk into an empty Nevel when his forces are mostly East of Smolensk. I'm also considering to try to recapture Mogilev with cavalry in a few turns.


Sneaky, something similar to this happened to me with the Moscow BiI scenario, most unpleasant

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 26
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/21/2010 10:57:35 PM   
Henri

 

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According to my experiments of AI vs AI described in another thread, the Soviets can take 10/1 losses and still beat the Germans. They get a lot of VPs for holding objectives and the Germans don't get a lot - so just try to hold on to the major objectives as long as possible. If you still hold Smolensk,Vyazma and that other one down SE when the game ends, you will surely win an overwhelming victory.

Henri

(in reply to Noakesy)
Post #: 27
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/22/2010 11:03:16 AM   
ComradeP

 

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Sorry for the lack of updates, I keep running out of time during the weekdays (7 PBEM's going and other commitments) and I had a fever yesterday so also ran out of energy.

I'll certainly post turn 7 today, as it has been done for a few days, and also turn 8 if I have the time.

Henri: the main problem for the Soviets with Kirov, Rzhev and Vyazma is that they only give the Soviets 300 VP's combined, so you're mostly holding them from the Germans.

I fear Smolensk will fall soon, probably around turn 11 or so. I don't really have the reserves in the area to hold it anymore, not with 2 large pockets. I don't mind the pockets, but as long as the units don't die and come back, I can't use them elsewhere.

The only good news is that the front in the South is moving slowly, so I might even get one or more 200 VP turns for Mstislavl.

German armoured and motorised formations are running out of replacements, so the main threat comes from the follow up infantry, some of which has already been reduced to a shadow of its former self. However, as half (excluding "lives" of units with one life)my force is dead or trapped, I don't have a lot of reserves currently. The Germans will soon be swarming all over the map, especially in the North.

(in reply to Henri)
Post #: 28
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/22/2010 6:05:52 PM   
Henri

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

Henri: the main problem for the Soviets with Kirov, Rzhev and Vyazma is that they only give the Soviets 300 VP's combined, so you're mostly holding them from the Germans.

I fear Smolensk will fall soon, probably around turn 11 or so. I don't really have the reserves in the area to hold it anymore, not with 2 large pockets. I don't mind the pockets, but as long as the units don't die and come back, I can't use them elsewhere.


So I guess the name of the game is how long the Soviets can hold on to Smolensk. If the Soviets hold it at the end of the game, they will almost certainly win, but if it falls by turn 11 as you fear, it doesn't look good, unless you inflicted really great casualties on the Germans (that can really add up, and you own losses don't count for very much).

Henri

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 29
RE: ATD2 Soviet AAR - no Squatter - 4/22/2010 9:31:09 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Well, as I'm still holding Mstislavl, I can also get points for that, I don't need to hold Smolensk for the points I get for it, but I need to try to keep the Germans away from it as long as possible. As long as the hex isn't surrounded and I can move reinforcements in/give replacements to the units on the VH, I might have a chance to hold it for longer than turn 11.

(in reply to Henri)
Post #: 30
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