If I expect a counterattack, I want at least two friendly hexes between me and the nearest enemy hex as the Axis, preferably three between my unit and the nearest enemy unit. Soviet morale isn't too great, so not that many units will actually make their morale checks for moving into the second hex I control and even less will actually be able to attack.
The mediocre Soviet morale does have as an "advantage" that their mobile units will be less fatiqued after moving, as it's often a miracle if they can move more than three hexes through enemy terrain in an enemy ZOC.
For the Axis, the main thing to keep in mind that you want to keep your mobile units in terrain that favours them. Don't try to hold a line with them, just park them behind the line somewhere as a reaction force when defending. When attacking, try to keep some distance between you and the nearest Soviet units, possibly moving back after capturing some terrain to increase the distance. In the first months of the 1941 campaign, the chance that a significant number of Soviet units can move through two hostile hexes to reach your unit and launch a deliberate attack is pretty much zero. Six Rifle divisions can give a mobile division an ugly surprise, but if only one or two can reach you, units with ~90% fatique can still stop them.
I try to pull mobile units out of the line for a turn once every four turns, but it can be very difficult to balance the need to strike deep into the Soviet controlled area each turn, and keeping your units in a decent shape. I would advise against an "everything or nothing" strategy where you push units to the limits each turn, as the result of that strategy will be "nothing" by default as the Axis can't win in 1941 and you need mobile units for 1942 and later years.
Aside from the distance in hexes I try to keep between my spearhead and the nearest concentration of Soviet units, I just remove 1/3 of the CV of mobile units as a personal planning tool for deciding whether their position is risky. I mostly check their actual fatique levels when I'm attacking with them after they've moved a significant distance.
< Message edited by ComradeP -- 12/19/2010 4:25:03 PM >
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