ComradeP its about your flank. Do sweep some PzD's into Estonia and clear an 120 mile flank and reduce it to 30 miles or leave it open to a Soviet counter while you drive on Leningrad? You can't take Leningrad without your infantry, 4th PzG will become lunch if it goes it alone...Andy spoke above how he's tormented players by doing what youv'e recomended...
I'm still missing the strategic reason for why a quick capture of Estonia is essential.
Let's assume the situation is going to be as you say, and the Soviets are trying to threaten the German flank through forces in Estonia. The Soviet forces will be facing most of the purple infantry divisions. From the position shown by Von Jaeger in the last post with a screenshot, the Soviets would have a few options:
-They would have to advance 9 hexes to get to Pskov, across difficult terrain and across two minor rivers, not to mention that they would be attacking Pskov across a minor river too. That isn't going to happen. Pskov is also the only city they can capture that would actually threaten the German supply situation, as all other rail lines are not really essential as long as the rail lines leading to Pskov are working.
-They could move towards Riga. Again, they would have to cross two minor rivers and would face difficult terrain and would have to advance around 11 hexes, and they would be attacking Riga across a major river or from a single non-river hexside hex. That isn't going to happen either.
-They could advance into central Latvia. Big deal, nothing they can do there can really threaten the Germans on the short term.
To achieve any of that, they would have to move substantial forces to their flanks. Meanwhile, those substantial forces are not near Leningrad or anywhere else. The Soviets need those forces more around Leningrad than the Germans need a few additional infantry divisions when facing fewer defenders. The Soviets are never going to have enough momentum to advance quickly.
From a strategic sense, I'd really be in no hurry to get to Tallinn as the Germans, there's just too little to gain from doing so. As such, I'd advise Stuart not to use Panzer divisions in Estonia, but to swing the Panzer Army east to Pskov and then north, and possibly further to the east in the full campaign where you have the time for a wide encirclement, although moving towards Vyshnyvolochek is still an attractive idea even in a short scenario like this.
There's also another reason for doing so, which brings me to the points Andy posted.
Narva, although close to Leningrad, is also seperated from Leningrad by: two major rivers, one major river and a minor river or three minor rivers depending on which hexes the Germans attack. Unless the Soviet player is asleep, that area is the dream of any defender due to the woods, the swamps and the fact that most hexes can only be attacked from two sides and across multiple rivers. If the area is not defended in depth, you'll probably get to Leningrad quickly. If the area is defended in depth, your Panzers are in an area they can't quickly relocate from. It's essential to strike in an area where, if the initial approach isn't working, you can hit another sector. That isn't possible with the Narva or "strike between the swamps between the lakes" option.
The latter option can also yield some good results, but if it doesn't your Panzers will not only be stuck in a swamp with no other sectors to hit, but will also be on the enemy side of a major river at least three hexes from the nearest rail line (in the case of Narva, you'd be sitting on a rail line).
The area between the two lakes and Novgorod/Lake Ilmen seems to be the most ideal attacking route for your Panzers for several reasons:
-Difficult for the Soviet to defend in depth, as there are a lot of hexes to cover.
-Multiple rail lines around to ease supply issues.
-If an attack doesn't work in one sector, Panzers can quickly strike another sector.
-The terrain is mostly horrible around Novgorod, the rest is OK.
-Depending on where you strike there are only one or two minor rivers to cross, minor rivers with conveniently located rail bridges.
-You, not the Soviets, can always decide where you strike (because you have so many options), so you can keep the initiative and momentum.
The last option Andy mention is fairly irrelevant for this scenario as AGC isn't on the map (mostly), and AGN is actually tasked with capturing AGC objectives for some reason.
The option Andy didn't mention, but which Hard Sarge has shown us in an AAR of a wide encirclement aimed at the ports supplying Leningrad is a very solid option, but there's probably not enough time for that in this scenario.
< Message edited by ComradeP -- 7/20/2010 1:46:45 PM >