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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar

 
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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 5:13:46 AM   
IdahoNYer


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South of 2nd PzGrp's attack, 2nd Army's mission was simply to protect AGC's southern flank from the Pripet Marshes. Well, that was the plan. With only two Korps allocated, I didn't expect much from 2nd Army - but I also expected the marshes to be contested. They weren't, not even a delay was attempted. Even so, I expected the Dniepr to be fortified, as it was north of Gomel. It wasn't. As lead elements of 2nd Army approached the end of the marshes and the Dniepr, led by the First Cavalry Div, they moved unhindered and eventually the cav crossed the Dniepr unapposed.

To the south of the marshes, 6th Army attempted, and failed, to cut off retreating Soviet tank divisions northwest of Kiev. What they did succeed in doing was forcing the armor to withdraw into the marshes where they are of little use, and may still be encircled by the unhindered 2nd Army.

The area east of the Pripet Marshes was not expected to be a viable avenue of approach to cut behind Kiev - I never expected a quick march through the Pripet. Now there may be an opportunity. With 6th Army up against the Soviets on the Dniepr, I've pulled XXXXVI PzKps from 6th Army. They will refit enroute back to AGC, being railed around the Pripet. If the 2nd Army still finds its front fluid, they will get XXXXVI Pzkps. If the front stabilizes, the PzKps will likely go to 2nd or 3rd PzKps.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 5:37:38 AM   
IdahoNYer


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South of Kiev, along the Dniepr, the Soviets were heavily dug in. Scar was pulling back as quick as he could through the Ukraine, and I had pretty much given up the possibility of either beating him to the Dniepr, or encircling his troops before they fell behind the river. The panzers were fairly well off on fuel, but were low on runners from the countless engagements since crossing the border - two divisions under 100 panzers.

As 1st PzGrp raced along the Dniepr, they found it, as expected, heavily fortified. However, just SE of Cherkassy, 16th Pz was able to get across unapposed - a vacant hex along the river. With 17th Army infantry arriving at the Dniepr, there may be opportunity here to force a crossing - its just far enough SE of Kiev to threaten his river line with envelopment if successful, and close enough for a drive at the prize of Kharkov.

While the Cherkassy crossing will be the main effort of AGS, 6th Army managed to find another vacant area to cross, about 30m south of Kiev. I don't expect much from this crossing, although each unit across the Dniepr is a success of sorts, and may put pressure on Scar to withdraw from the river. Frankly I hope he holds off withdrawing for a few weeks - I need to rest 1st PzGrp before they can exploit any penetration, and it will give 17th Army an opportunity to bring more infantry up, and expand the bridgehead.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 5:48:05 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Further south, the German 11th Army, as well as the Rum 4th and 3rd Armies, advance on a broad front against little or no opposition. Even Odessa is barely defended. Again, looks as though Scar is running to the Dniepr and may even give up the Dniepr bend without a fight.

The Rum 3rd Army will take Odessa, then continue east to seize Nikolaev and then threaten the Crimea. The German 11th and Rum 4th Army will continue to advance to the Dniepr, clearing out the Dniepr bend, then if feasible, attempt a crossing to cut off the Crimea.

As APs permit, I am attempting to assign a German division to each Rum Corps as a "corset" to give those corps at least some effective combat power.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 5:54:00 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Lastly, the casualties. While I'm happy to get some forward momentum again, I'm concerned about the "lack" of Soviet casualties - only 1.2 million men. I think Scar has been very successful in his withdrawal - and preventing major encirclements. Hopefully, this past turn has managed to envelope a large force east of Veliki Luki, that will help.

So, any observations on the chances of a success at this point are more than welcome!

thanks.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 6:24:12 AM   
krupp_88mm


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you've made extremely fast progress, is he even slowing you down at all? your already where the German army was on the 7th of September on the Moscow front a month+ ahead of schedule along with that huge bulge id say if you want to you could probably take moscow , Leningrad also looks ripe for a cut off, and most players are just reaching the dienper at this turn not crossing it, so my guess is your opponent is going to be doomed here, good work, trading space for time is good, but i don't think he got enough time in this bargain

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 8:44:30 PM   
IdahoNYer


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I hope you're right Krupp. It certainly doesn't feel like it though. One difference is I guess is that I haven't given any army the opportunity to pause and recoup some strength - every time I think I'll be able too, Scar pulls back to his next fortified line. And his level 2 forts are tough!! Will be an interesting last few weeks of summer campaigning!

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/6/2011 10:08:34 PM   
krupp_88mm


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if i had to guess hes probably been building forts in the rear and preping defenses back thier, try to get as much recon deep behind his lines and figure out where his making a stand, if hes going to make a stand far back you wont have enough force to break through all three fronts, id concentrate your force late in the summer at one maybe two fronts, if i were you id double up on the moscow front, or the Leningrad front or maybe both, but then again it is possible he just screwed up, it looks like he was thinking seriously about defending the dnieper

< Message edited by krupp_88mm -- 1/6/2011 10:09:51 PM >

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 4:38:27 AM   
IdahoNYer


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On 7 Aug, 18th Army, supported by the left wing of the 16th Army, crosses the Luga R, and begins to batter down dug-in Soviet positions near Leningrad. Going is slow, although Totenkopf advances an additional 10 miles.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 4:55:36 AM   
IdahoNYer


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16th Army's main effort was to be a rapid advance south lake Ilmen with XXXXI Pzkps supported by II Korps. However, Soviet defenses, dug in anchored by swamps held the attack to less than 10 miles gained. This completely offset the gains made by 4th PzGrp's LVI Pzkps driving up from the south. The 10 or so Soviet formations will likely be able to break out as only the Lehr motorized Bde was able to complete the encirclement.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 5:15:36 AM   
IdahoNYer


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The Veliki Luki Pocket managed to regain contact with Soviet lines during the Soviet turn, but a swift attack by 3rd PzGrp and 4th PzGrp quickly re-established the line and isolated the pocket. Also, but establishing a small corridor, the Soviet line was apparently weakened near Rzhev, and XXXIX PzKps was able to break through, to threaten the city.

This easterly attack should also convince Scar that the main effort here is toward Moscow, not Leningrad. In either case, the panzers badly need rest and resupply while 9th Army reduces the pocket in the coming weeks.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 5:29:08 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Opposite 4th Army, the Soviets surprisingly abandon Smolensk and pull back to rearward defensive positions. Once again, I send 2nd PzGrp forward to prevent the Soviets from soundly digging in - and they advance over 40 miles against fairly weak opposition. They are halted more by fuel shortages and fatigue rather than firmly dug in troops. At some point the Soviets are going to have to try and hold firm.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 5:45:13 AM   
IdahoNYer


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2nd Army advances toward Gomel and Chernigov against sporadic resistance, but just can not make the link up with 6th Army to isolate the Soviet armor withdrawing towards Chernigov. It does not appear that the Soviets are going to make a stand west of the Desna. XXXXVI Pzkps is being railed from 6th Army to 2nd Army to provide some mobility.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 5:58:56 AM   
IdahoNYer


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In AGS area, the Soviets are obviously attempting a firm stand along the Dniepr, and withdrawing rapidly to that position. The level 3 fortifications along the Dniepr have proven difficult to say the least. The Soviets managed to through a division from 6th Army back across the Dniepr during their turn, but 6th Army not only re-took the lost bridgehead, but expanded it by another 10 miles. 1st Pz Grp was unable to widen their bridgehead, and were repulsed in the attempt. However, they did succeed in pushing 10 miles deeper. 17th Army's infantry is almost all up at the line now, and it may be a grinding battle to push him off the river, but it can be accomplished. There is no bypass.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/11/2011 6:07:05 AM   
IdahoNYer


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The German 11th Army, and Rumanian 3rd and 4th Armies continue to advance toward the Dniepr against little opposition. It is apparent the Soviets won't stop until they are behind the river. Even the cities are not being strongly defended.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/17/2011 7:35:16 AM   
Zemke_4


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I have been watching this game closely, mostly to see if it is possible to get close to historical Soviet casualties.

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/17/2011 9:18:02 AM   
ComradeP

 

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You've made some nice pockets thus far and have made good progress, but like you said your mobile units are probably running out of steam after advances like that. The situation in the AGS area is indeed fairly similar to my game, but you've made much more substantial gains in the north and center. Due to the swamps near Pskov and the relative lack of mobile units in AGC, my progress has been far more limited in those areas.

Interesting how you split up a fairly large number of divisions. That could cost you if you run into concentrated resistance. Some of your HQ's are a bit exposed too, they could be displaced.

If progress is slow in the AGN area for the next few turns and there doesn't seem to be a way of improving the situation, it might be a good idea to move 4th Panzer Group and the assorted mobile forces in AGN elsewhere, they're better used in an area where momentum can be maintained.

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 1:23:06 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Turn 9, 14 August.

18th Army continues to bludgeon its way towards Leningrad, supported by the northernt two Korps of 16th Army. With heavy fortifications anchored to good terrain, the Soviets are making this a slow and arduous task. Still, the advance continues with Totenkopf able to exploit meager gains.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 1:49:45 AM   
IdahoNYer


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16th Army and 4th PzGrp fail to close a pocket as Soviet forts thwart repeated attacks. 4th PzGrp badly needs to reconsititute and resupply - but Soviet resistance appears to be barely holding the line. Tough choices await.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 2:07:10 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Between AGN and AGC, the Veliki Luki Pocket is crushed, resulting in about 120,000 Soviet losses. This frees up 9th Army, as well as elements of 3rd and 4th Pz Grps. XIV Pzkps and LVII PzKps rest, hoping to resupply and exploit gains made by XXXIX Pzkps north of Rzhev. With adequate supply, I still feel the Panzers can reach the Finns and isolate Leningrad - the issue remains the supply situation.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 2:15:39 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Between Smolensk and Bryansk, AGC does rests. 4th Army is stretched thin just holding the front as 3rd PzGrp and 9th Army moves northward. 2nd PzGrp is out of gas, literally. Heavily fatigued, and low on supplies, it is forced to abandon the drive toward Bryansk. XXXXVI Pzkps, fresh from 6th Army, arrives to 2nd Army to drive ESE from Gomel toward Kursk.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 2:51:00 AM   
IdahoNYer


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6th Army reinforces its bridgehead across the Dniepr south of Kiev, but does not have the ability to expand its bridgehead. South of Cherkassy, 1st PzGrp, reinforced by elements of 17th Army, slowly expand its bridgehead with XXXXVIII Pzkps eliminating a level 3 fortified position. Additional infantry divisions are also brough across. III Pzkps and LII Korps also establish bridgeheads. Slowly, but surely, the Soviets are being forced from the river. The question is when, not if, the Germans will breakout from the bridgehead. The problem remains two fold - first, will the Soviets attempt to hold the river line too long? And two, has this delay in the advance disrupted the German timetable sufficiently. I think the next two turns or so will answer both questions.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/22/2011 3:03:36 AM   
IdahoNYer


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The remainder of AGS continues to push on a broad front to the Dniepr Bend. Odessa falls to the Rum 4th Army, and its lead elements reach the Dniepr SSE of Nikalaev. 11th Army and the Rum 3rd Army meet little resistance west of the Dniepr and continue to push east. Obviously the Soviets will make their stand on the river.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 1:31:56 AM   
krupp_88mm


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any updates are appreciated did you decide to go for moscow or Leningrad?

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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 2:39:29 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Turn 10, 21 Aug 1941......

18th and 16th Armies continue to bludgeon their way toward Leningrad against heavily fortified positions. Soviets counterattacked successfully during their turn with 3xtank divisions and infantry against two regiments of Totenkopf which routed! Out of over 500 tanks committed, 150 were destroyed! I was able to re-take the lost ground, but seeing a large scale counterattack was sobering. He's got alot of combat power deployed against these two armies. The progress is slow, but steady. Probably not enough to isolate Leningrad from this avenue, but that's not the intent. Just keep the pressure on for him to commit forces and "think" this is the main attack. With the armor thrown at Totenkopf, I may have succeeded.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 3:35:05 AM   
IdahoNYer


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16th Army's XXXXI PzKps punches forward across the Pola R against fairly light opposition. But supplies are low, and progress is moderate. Still, this should convince the Russians that the main weight of AGN rests with 16th and 18th Army in a direct approach to Leningrad, and this is the most "flanking" the Germans intend to do.

Further south, with the collapse of the Veliki Luki Pocket, 4th Pz Grp moves it's two Pzkps into attack positions for next week's attack. HQ Buildup function is used for the first time on these two Pzkps which badly need the supply boost. It will be interesting to see whether the positive outweighs the negative with that supply boost.

To facilitate the attack, part of 9th Army's XX Korps attacks across the Volga securing a bridgehead, but fails to exploit the attack as an attack fails. Still, this should provide a springboard for next weeks main attack by 4th PzGrp.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 3:44:29 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Lastly, in the north, perhaps the most crucial turn of events - the Soviets did not garrison the Finnish "no attack line" and two Finnish Corps pour south, hindered by one security regiment. The port of Sviritsa falls and the Finns meet no resistance as they continue south. Perhaps they can even cut the northern most East-West rail line to Leningrad???




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 3:55:47 AM   
IdahoNYer


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The northern portion of AGC prepares to support 4th Pz Grp's attack. 3rd Pz Grp's XXXIX Pzkps rests and receives the HQ supply buildup, while the LVII PzKps has to make due with additional supplies via airdrop. 9th Army infantry expands the bridgehead across the Volga north of Rzhev to facilitate 3rd Pz Grp's attack next week. Also by attacking near Rzhev, I still hope to convince Scar this is a limited attack aimed at encircling Rzhev instead of a prelude to a much larger attack.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 4:03:08 AM   
IdahoNYer


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4th Army and 2nd Pz Grp areas remain very quiet. With 9th Army well to the north, 4th Army is streched thin just to cover the front, and has little ability to mass except for a very localized attack. 2nd Pz Grp rests, albiet without HQ supply buildup, and awaits to jump off next week to fix Russians southwest of Moscow.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 4:35:50 AM   
IdahoNYer


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2nd Army launches the newly arrived XXXXVI PzKps as the Soviets begin to pull back on the Gomel front. The PzKps makes good progress against mixed opposition, and manages to establish a bridgehead across the Desna R. However, like 4th Army to it's north, 2nd Army is also stretched thin on infantry to cover the front. My objective was to be Kursk, but with the hordes of Russians ecountered, and the lack of adequate German infantry, this could be a bit too far of a reach.




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RE: Return to Smolensk and Beyond, IdahoNY vs Scar - 1/26/2011 4:47:03 AM   
IdahoNYer


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Kiev falls as the Soviets pull back. 6th Army slowly expands its bridgehead south of the city. 1st Pz Grp's III and XXXXVIII Pzkps linkup on the east bank of the Dniepr, isolating a number of Soviet units. Progress is slow, and no breakout of the bridgehead can occur with mass of Soviets running about. So much for a quick thrust to link up with 2nd Army!




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