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RE: The weather thing

 
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RE: The weather thing - 1/21/2011 12:02:29 AM   
raizer

 

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valenki: learn it; know it; live it

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RE: The weather thing - 1/21/2011 5:27:11 AM   
abulbulian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: EisenHammer

Thats not cool.
If the Axis player starts digging in November they should be able to do better than being stuck out in the open when winter hits.



This is what I was hoping too bro. But let me tell you it's far from the case in WitE and unfortunately far from historical. The weather was only one out of many factors that caused the disaster for the German army in late 41 early 42. Even if your units are forted (2-3), well rested, well supplied, high exp and moral... lol you'll still get jack up and down the line. I couldn't even hold in most places for one turn of blizzard. This needs to change. I'm fine with having axis units having no ability to attack in blizzard and movement causing damage to units and fatiguing them as well as attrition based on location, supply, and fort level. But not being able to defend a solid dug-in well supplied position is crazy IMO. If you read about that winter, you'll find the stories where these rested and defensive lines in certain areas that the Germans had gone defensive early were able to inflict heavy loses on sov repeated attacks in mid-late Dec and hold the line. Other units that had been pushed from Typhoon and other crazy late 41 operations had burned through supplies, exhausted, and well understrength and of courses suffered heavily. This is what people know more about and was the case for a large portion of the line.

We just need to supply data to the Dev's and I have a human vs human game that is going into end of bliz that has plenty of data..

< Message edited by abulbulian -- 1/21/2011 5:29:13 AM >

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RE: The weather thing - 1/21/2011 6:42:08 AM   
EisenHammer


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Yeah… I just got done reading that thread. It's a good one with alot of data, looks like your almost thru the first winter.

I'm trying out Typhoon right now against the AI to see just how bad the blizzard turns are. I'm sure I will not like it.

You would think digging in would help out against winter attrition.

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RE: The weather thing - 1/21/2011 9:14:38 AM   
Red Lancer


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Having browsed through the posts, survived my first winter playing the Germans and re-read a couple of relevant chapters about winter 41/42 I thought I'd add my view.
The first thing is that most of us think that we can do better than history. Hindsight has that effect. Therefore those of us who went for the dig in early option had a bit of a shock that it wasn't as effective as we might have liked.

I pen these thoughts after a little contemplation on how the Germans should suffer.

> In total the first winter must have shock value: it was the German's first setback on land.
> "Weapon lubricants froze so the only option was to use grenades" : reduced attack and defence values - already there!
> "Vehicles froze": reduced manoeuvre points - more impact on Axis reqd - not just damage to vehicles etc.
> "Not used to the winter" : increased fatigue - not just decreased morale.
> "Wrong clothing" : increased casualties - already there! However I think it should modified by month to reflect experience (similar to vehicles) and a bonus for digging in.
> "German uninsulated steam engines couldn't make steam" : reduced supply (already there) and rail capacity (needs to be added)
> "Not a step backwards" : reduction in admin points to reflect the impact of chain of command - needs to be added.

In summary perhaps less damage casualties but increased constraints in other areas.

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MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/21/2011 9:30:12 PM   
madgamer2

 

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In one reply very early on in my "the weather thing" ome of the playtesters or person with some clout stated that the weather will STAY the way it is. Perhaps it might be because of what might have happened if the winter came later with more snow turns or the winter was late. There is an unstated belief to the question "what would have happened if the blizzard weather was 2-6 weeks later?". There is strong opinion that the Germans might have taken or isolated Moscow. Even if they edid it would not have ended the war as a Certain French Leader found out in 1812 but it would produce in game turns a very interesting situation.
The only way we are going to get change is to start a thread and have all who favor some changes or options in the weather rules sing into it. Even then the hard core who generally get there way might sink the whole project. I think that as long as the present rules are in the game making some what ifs with the weather would add a certain amount of not knowing what might happen. Is not war and battle made up of these two principals?
Well just a thought. Many of you who were testers might have some great ideas for some optional ways of doing things, BUT the ONLY way we can get Matrix to pay attention is to get a lot of folks involved in this.

Just my two cents worth....again
Madgamer2

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/21/2011 9:39:29 PM   
abulbulian


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The hindsight thing with any game of this genre is an issue. By the same token of the logic not allowing the axis to dig in and have a reasonable change to defend during blizzard one could argue the ability for the sov units in 41 to just keep retreating as would seem the logical strategy.

Both of this concepts have a large impact the game balancing. But would seem the 'smarter' choices unless there were some other incentive(s) to do otherwise. I can't see any reason for the sov player to hold exposed lines or not to checkboard his def. He'll have the ability to get plenty of factories out if he pursues this strategy.

For the axis, I suppose if the prize is Moscow or maybe Leningrad near the end of Nov... you could try and get it. But I can tell you right now after experiencing the blizzard of 41-42 even in prepared positions... you'll never keep Moscow. Unless maybe you take late Oct.

< Message edited by abulbulian -- 1/21/2011 9:40:32 PM >

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/22/2011 5:07:20 AM   
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I just got done with Typhoon against the AI on normal. And I have to say, it was not as bad as thought it would be. The times the Russian overran my L3 forts was when they had a 3+ to 1 in numbers of troops attacking me. Which too me seems reasonable. Again this is against the AI so I know it will be different against a real person in PBEM. I think an option to check on and off a Russian winter would be the best way to go. I Think I'm going to start a GC game now.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/22/2011 1:09:51 PM   
Kid


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I made it thru the first winter (on normal) by making as many Russian units surrender as I possibly could, not overextending my lines, digging in early and the use of forts behind my lines to slow down breakthroughs. I did not lose any divisions.




Attachment (1)

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/22/2011 11:56:56 PM   
randallw

 

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This thread has gone on for quite a few messages, so I don't remember everything said.

Some questions for the playtesters:

Were the blizzard penalties the same for alpha testing as they were in the released version of the game?
Do you feel that the current penalties are close to historical, considering how flustered Axis players currently are?
Should the setup stay as it is?


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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:00:20 AM   
Joel Billings


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I will answer one of the questions and leave the rest for the testers. The first winter rules actually were eased several times during development. IIRC part of what was changed was reducing the impact even more in the later months (first Jan, and then Feb). Although there was always some reduction as the winter goes on, the reduction was increased. IIRC the last changes were made within the last 30 days of development before release.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:16:48 AM   
randallw

 

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Do you think the blizzard penalties for the Axis are reasonably close to history, or does it need another adjustment, based on the Axis players unhappiness?

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:31:50 AM   
madgamer2

 

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NOT BAD AT ALL. I have one question> Howdid you get your units in to the Sevastopol peninsula and how die you withdraw them befor winter? well two questions. How are the units left after blizzard and during get supply?

Madgamer2

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:34:54 AM   
abulbulian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joel Billings

I will answer one of the questions and leave the rest for the testers. The first winter rules actually were eased several times during development. IIRC part of what was changed was reducing the impact even more in the later months (first Jan, and then Feb). Although there was always some reduction as the winter goes on, the reduction was increased. IIRC the last changes were made within the last 30 days of development before release.



Thanks Joel, this does go a long way to explaining some things.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:37:18 AM   
2ndACR


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quote:

ORIGINAL: madgamer2

NOT BAD AT ALL. I have one question> Howdid you get your units in to the Sevastopol peninsula and how die you withdraw them befor winter? well two questions. How are the units left after blizzard and during get supply?

Madgamer2

You can get them there, but you usually need to shift a Panzer Corp to make it work good.

Doubt he withdrew, but got thrown back. Blizzard is rough.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 4:43:27 AM   
abulbulian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: randallw

Do you think the blizzard penalties for the Axis are reasonably close to history, or does it need another adjustment, based on the Axis players unhappiness?



Well I've discussed this in length in other posts, but I can be brief here. The blizzard should be harsh, but IMO it's much too harsh for units that are in a defensive posture and will the following criteria met:

- well supplied
- well fortified (2-3 fort lvl)
- high moral/exp
- good supply lines
- decent TOE

But as it stands WitE blizzard mechanics don't really take that into account. All units not in city, urban, town (to some extent) are treated equally as harsh. From all my readings (50+ books on this conflict) I've never seen the weather to be the only factor in the why the German army faced such a disaster in Dec-Jan. Just wasn't the reality. Countless stories of German units in Dec that had ceased offensive operations around Oct-Nov and were able to hold the lines and didn't suffer as much because they had supplies, ammo, and prepared positions. On the other hand units that had participated in battles for Typhoon were exhausted, deficient of supplies, fuel, and ammo. They had no opportunity to dig in and use fuel to fires to keep warm.

So I've been lobbying for these factors to be considered in the blizzard mechanics. Treat attacking and moving units with sever penalties, but allow units to mount some realistic defense if that have the ability to do so. My axis army was in a good position to deal with the winter (in reality), but blizzard just destroyed it and I lost 1.2 million men in 13 turns of blizzard.




< Message edited by abulbulian -- 1/23/2011 4:45:26 AM >

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 11:08:58 AM   
Kid


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quote:

ORIGINAL: madgamer2

NOT BAD AT ALL. I have one question> Howdid you get your units in to the Sevastopol peninsula and how die you withdraw them befor winter? well two questions. How are the units left after blizzard and during get supply?

Madgamer2


I killed so many Russians that the AI did not have enough men to hold the Southern flank. Most of the units down there were brigades. Even the Romains were able to hold the line for a while. I was pushed back one hex at a time. Most units were down to 50%. I set the TOE level for all my units to 80% for Inf, 85% Motorized, 90% Armor, and 100% SS so the replacements would be spread around a little bit more. I'm in Dec of 42 and I've killed a lot more Russians but I still could not take Moscow even when I threw all my PZ armies at it.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 12:22:46 PM   
MechFO

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joel Billings

I will answer one of the questions and leave the rest for the testers. The first winter rules actually were eased several times during development. IIRC part of what was changed was reducing the impact even more in the later months (first Jan, and then Feb). Although there was always some reduction as the winter goes on, the reduction was increased. IIRC the last changes were made within the last 30 days of development before release.


Were any tests actually done with a proper control? I.e. a small scenario setup around ca. 4th December, with the "historical" TOE/ supply stats?

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 12:26:04 PM   
MechFO

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Kid

I made it thru the first winter (on normal) by making as many Russian units surrender as I possibly could, not overextending my lines, digging in early and the use of forts behind my lines to slow down breakthroughs. I did not lose any divisions.





It's mostly not the loss of territory that is crippling, but the loss of manpower and, due to the replacement mechanics, the loss of experience.

Even if one rebuilds a unit to 90+ TOE, the efficiency will still be much lower due to the Inf Squads being at around 50 EXP.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 2:28:04 PM   
Kid


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Most of my units are above 75% experience.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 5:43:27 PM   
PeeDeeAitch


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I think that it is remarkable how well the Germans (in the game) do survive the 1st winter.  I live in a location where there is usually one night each year of -40c/f, and that means all sorts of problems.  Having to work, do physical activity, and even simply drive (in a modern car with excellent oils and the like) becomes a massively difficult and sometimes dangerous thing.  And I have lived here since I was a pre-teen, so I know how to approach it.
 
Given that the Germans could not get winter supplies to the troops, that ammunition packing and engine blocks thus froze (sometimes for days on end), and exposed flesh could mean a death sentence were the results.  Beyond this, and this is important, was the psychological effect of not only facing the most severe winter most had seen, but also knowing the soldiers were on the end of their ropes thousands of kilometers from home.  THAT also needs to be modded for the first winter in any game.
 
I do not know how the winter mitigators would go about addressing such things.  Do the Germans take a 25% less supply hit in order to simulate delivery of winter clothes, winter training (just how to relieve oneself can be deadly - and was), and redesigned weapons – is this even enough?  How does digging in lessen the lack of clothing, functioning weapons, and basic cold?  In a trench or blockhouse without winter gear, -40 is still -40, and that does not even approach the psychology.
 
I feel some of the problem is just what the Germans faced – so tantalizingly close, so deep in the campaign, and it all seems to come crashing down.  Your units fall apart, rout (though there are some heroic stands as well), and your front gets pushed back 10 hexes if you are not ready for it.  The only place where things don’t go wrong is (if you are incredibly lucky to have them against a human) where the Finns are, or further south where the mountain troops stand there looking like winter gods – even the Romanian mountain troops shine.
 
I am NOT criticizing those debating here, nor attacking anyone – it simply seems to me that the game does not go overboard in 1st winter effects, and for the life of me I cannot see how to properly simulate a greater awareness, readiness, and training for the Germans without crippling the entire initial advance.  Just my two cents as well, mostly caused by waking up and having to go to work outside last week in (mere) -10f weather.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 6:11:15 PM   
abulbulian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Kid

I made it thru the first winter (on normal) by making as many Russian units surrender as I possibly could, not overextending my lines, digging in early and the use of forts behind my lines to slow down breakthroughs. I did not lose any divisions.



Not to be rude, but I don't consider any games against a sov AI to reflect what I'm trying to get across. You need to play a decent human sov player to expose the play balancing issues. One can complete throw out trying to leverage any play balancing issues in game when one side or another is AI. Sorry, that's just the way it is.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 6:17:47 PM   
abulbulian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: PeeDeeAitch

I think that it is remarkable how well the Germans (in the game) do survive the 1st winter.  I live in a location where there is usually one night each year of -40c/f, and that means all sorts of problems.  Having to work, do physical activity, and even simply drive (in a modern car with excellent oils and the like) becomes a massively difficult and sometimes dangerous thing.  And I have lived here since I was a pre-teen, so I know how to approach it.
 
Given that the Germans could not get winter supplies to the troops, that ammunition packing and engine blocks thus froze (sometimes for days on end), and exposed flesh could mean a death sentence were the results.  Beyond this, and this is important, was the psychological effect of not only facing the most severe winter most had seen, but also knowing the soldiers were on the end of their ropes thousands of kilometers from home.  THAT also needs to be modded for the first winter in any game.
 
I do not know how the winter mitigators would go about addressing such things.  Do the Germans take a 25% less supply hit in order to simulate delivery of winter clothes, winter training (just how to relieve oneself can be deadly - and was), and redesigned weapons – is this even enough?  How does digging in lessen the lack of clothing, functioning weapons, and basic cold?  In a trench or blockhouse without winter gear, -40 is still -40, and that does not even approach the psychology.
 
I feel some of the problem is just what the Germans faced – so tantalizingly close, so deep in the campaign, and it all seems to come crashing down.  Your units fall apart, rout (though there are some heroic stands as well), and your front gets pushed back 10 hexes if you are not ready for it.  The only place where things don’t go wrong is (if you are incredibly lucky to have them against a human) where the Finns are, or further south where the mountain troops stand there looking like winter gods – even the Romanian mountain troops shine.
 
I am NOT criticizing those debating here, nor attacking anyone – it simply seems to me that the game does not go overboard in 1st winter effects, and for the life of me I cannot see how to properly simulate a greater awareness, readiness, and training for the Germans without crippling the entire initial advance.  Just my two cents as well, mostly caused by waking up and having to go to work outside last week in (mere) -10f weather.



I think you need to read more about what is or is not possible. Once you acquire that knowledge about how units that were able to prepare for the winter and do well in it, you'll understand my point. getting a little tired of people explain same or history about how they suffered. Maybe if you did a bit deeper and read on the subject, you;ll understand all the factors why the Germans suffered in winter 41-42.

MY POINT is that if the Germans had they not exhausted their supplies, units, ammo in the last few operations to push for Moscow and prepare for the winter they would have been in much better shape to handle the sov Dec counter attack.

One thing people continue to fail to realize is that the decisions not to send winter clothes and winterizing equipment was Hitler's directive for supplies/ammo/fuel to take priority to push in Nov/Dec. I WANT A PLAYER to choose whether he wants to push or hold the line. Is it that hard to understand? If you give the sov player the ability to retreat units and reap the rewards of that latter, YOU MUST allow the axis player similar strategic choices that impact the game balancing so much... IMO


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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 6:30:18 PM   
PeeDeeAitch


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quote:

ORIGINAL: abulbulian
MY POINT is that if the Germans had they not exhausted their supplies, units, ammo in the last few operations to push for Moscow and prepare for the winter they would have been in much better shape to handle the sov Dec counter attack.

One thing people continue to fail to realize is that the decisions not to send winter clothes and winterizing equipment was Hitler's directive for supplies/ammo/fuel to take priority to push in Nov/Dec. I WANT A PLAYER to choose whether he wants to push or hold the line. Is it that hard to understand? If you give the sov player the ability to retreat units and reap the rewards of that latter, YOU MUST allow the axis player similar strategic choices that impact the game balancing so much... IMO



And you fail to understand my point, no offense intended again. The germans could have stopped the November offensives and sent winter clothing, I understand that - but that would still mean fewer supplies to the front. This not only obviates any offensive, it also (in my opinion) affects the overall status of the units. The entire supply operation was a shoestring affair, as you know.

That supply of winter clothing does nothing to lessen the effect of the winter on the German equipment. Nobody expected fuel to gell, packing grease to freeze solid, oil sumps to harden into immobility. Not only that, how does the training come into effect, over and over one reads of weather related problems from simple daily activities that men weren't prepared for? Also, does such supplies mitigate the psychological effects of the weather, eliminate it, or do nothing for it?

I appreciate you seem to think I do not understand any of the history, logistics, or such of the campaign - but you also seem to fail to see that I was not arguing for simple winter coats, gloves, and such at the front. I was arguing that even with there there were no ways to ready for much of the effects of winter that severe unless the entire system knew that it was coming.

I make allowances for internet memes to push focus on language, and assume an attacking tone on my part - however, my points were not simply winter clothing, as you can see if you reread my initial post, but more the rest of the gamut of problems that no amount of winter clothing could have solved.

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RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 7:47:42 PM   
Kid


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I think there should be an option in the game to let the players adjust the effects of the first winter. This would solve a lot of issues. I agree that playing the AI is not like PBEM, but the balance for the AI is just as important as the balance for PBEM.

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Post #: 114
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 7:58:09 PM   
willgamer


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Kid

I think there should be an option in the game to let the players adjust the effects of the first winter. This would solve a lot of issues. I agree that playing the AI is not like PBEM, but the balance for the AI is just as important as the balance for PBEM.



For me, that's the heart of the issue. Having (sadly) spent more time reading about the game than playing it, I can see that there are about as many definitions of "historical" as there are players.

In retrospect, hard coding the weather was incompatable with a community as diverse as this.

I hope the devs, both seen and unseen, will consider increasing the flexibility of the game with options for weather as well as the associated play balancing mechanisms.



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Post #: 115
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 9:18:47 PM   
el hefe


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I'd like to add that two factors in which no one seems to acknowledge was the inadequate German defensive doctrine that was basically a slightly modified World War One concept with little innovation and Soviet complete tactical and strategic surprise. The Germans spent thirty years in developing the classic modern mobile warfare but almost completely neglected their own defensive doctrine which was totally inadequate and incapable of being employed in Russia. The Germans conducted very little defensive training and conducted very few major defensive operations in the thirty years since World War One. It was the defeats during the Soviet counteroffensive combined with Hitler's stand-fast orders that saw the development of the strongpoint defense backed by reserves. The strongpoint defense, which became a German staple for the rest of the war, had no precedent in German doctrine until this winter. I don't think a simple dig in to level 3 with good supplies is enough to stop the counteroffensive cold IMO.

Having said that I think there are some issues that need to be addressed which is the generous German supply situation, massive German disabled losses in the winter, and the near perfect luftwaffe readiness during the blizzard.

Trey

quote:

ORIGINAL: PeeDeeAitch


quote:

ORIGINAL: abulbulian
MY POINT is that if the Germans had they not exhausted their supplies, units, ammo in the last few operations to push for Moscow and prepare for the winter they would have been in much better shape to handle the sov Dec counter attack.

One thing people continue to fail to realize is that the decisions not to send winter clothes and winterizing equipment was Hitler's directive for supplies/ammo/fuel to take priority to push in Nov/Dec. I WANT A PLAYER to choose whether he wants to push or hold the line. Is it that hard to understand? If you give the sov player the ability to retreat units and reap the rewards of that latter, YOU MUST allow the axis player similar strategic choices that impact the game balancing so much... IMO



And you fail to understand my point, no offense intended again. The germans could have stopped the November offensives and sent winter clothing, I understand that - but that would still mean fewer supplies to the front. This not only obviates any offensive, it also (in my opinion) affects the overall status of the units. The entire supply operation was a shoestring affair, as you know.

That supply of winter clothing does nothing to lessen the effect of the winter on the German equipment. Nobody expected fuel to gell, packing grease to freeze solid, oil sumps to harden into immobility. Not only that, how does the training come into effect, over and over one reads of weather related problems from simple daily activities that men weren't prepared for? Also, does such supplies mitigate the psychological effects of the weather, eliminate it, or do nothing for it?

I appreciate you seem to think I do not understand any of the history, logistics, or such of the campaign - but you also seem to fail to see that I was not arguing for simple winter coats, gloves, and such at the front. I was arguing that even with there there were no ways to ready for much of the effects of winter that severe unless the entire system knew that it was coming.

I make allowances for internet memes to push focus on language, and assume an attacking tone on my part - however, my points were not simply winter clothing, as you can see if you reread my initial post, but more the rest of the gamut of problems that no amount of winter clothing could have solved.



_____________________________

"You want mercy!? I'm chaotic neutral!"

WiTE Scenario Designer
WitW Scenario/Data Team Lead
Sabre 21's perpetual arch-nemisis

(in reply to PeeDeeAitch)
Post #: 116
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 9:38:35 PM   
abulbulian


Posts: 778
Joined: 3/31/2005
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: el hefe

I'd like to add that two factors in which no one seems to acknowledge was the inadequate German defensive doctrine that was basically a slightly modified World War One concept with little innovation and Soviet complete tactical and strategic surprise. The Germans spent thirty years in developing the classic modern mobile warfare but almost completely neglected their own defensive doctrine which was totally inadequate and incapable of being employed in Russia. The Germans conducted very little defensive training and conducted very few major defensive operations in the thirty years since World War One. It was the defeats during the Soviet counteroffensive combined with Hitler's stand-fast orders that saw the development of the strongpoint defense backed by reserves. The strongpoint defense, which became a German staple for the rest of the war, had no precedent in German doctrine until this winter. I don't think a simple dig in to level 3 with good supplies is enough to stop the counteroffensive cold IMO.

Having said that I think there are some issues that need to be addressed which is the generous German supply situation, massive German disabled losses in the winter, and the near perfect luftwaffe readiness during the blizzard.

Trey

quote:

ORIGINAL: PeeDeeAitch


quote:

ORIGINAL: abulbulian
MY POINT is that if the Germans had they not exhausted their supplies, units, ammo in the last few operations to push for Moscow and prepare for the winter they would have been in much better shape to handle the sov Dec counter attack.

One thing people continue to fail to realize is that the decisions not to send winter clothes and winterizing equipment was Hitler's directive for supplies/ammo/fuel to take priority to push in Nov/Dec. I WANT A PLAYER to choose whether he wants to push or hold the line. Is it that hard to understand? If you give the sov player the ability to retreat units and reap the rewards of that latter, YOU MUST allow the axis player similar strategic choices that impact the game balancing so much... IMO



And you fail to understand my point, no offense intended again. The germans could have stopped the November offensives and sent winter clothing, I understand that - but that would still mean fewer supplies to the front. This not only obviates any offensive, it also (in my opinion) affects the overall status of the units. The entire supply operation was a shoestring affair, as you know.

That supply of winter clothing does nothing to lessen the effect of the winter on the German equipment. Nobody expected fuel to gell, packing grease to freeze solid, oil sumps to harden into immobility. Not only that, how does the training come into effect, over and over one reads of weather related problems from simple daily activities that men weren't prepared for? Also, does such supplies mitigate the psychological effects of the weather, eliminate it, or do nothing for it?

I appreciate you seem to think I do not understand any of the history, logistics, or such of the campaign - but you also seem to fail to see that I was not arguing for simple winter coats, gloves, and such at the front. I was arguing that even with there there were no ways to ready for much of the effects of winter that severe unless the entire system knew that it was coming.

I make allowances for internet memes to push focus on language, and assume an attacking tone on my part - however, my points were not simply winter clothing, as you can see if you reread my initial post, but more the rest of the gamut of problems that no amount of winter clothing could have solved.




Are you joking about Germans not being able to excel at defensive operations? Wow, that is the craziest thing I've ever heard. They were masters at defensive and delaying actions. Just look at what the accomplished in NA and Normandy. Oh and yes, on many occasions on the east front (Manstein's backhand blow 43). If it had not been for Hitler continual meddling in affairs to NOT allow structured retreats and the use of mobile forces to maneuver on the defensive to destroy possible sov thrust.. thing would have been different... longer war on the east?

So don't tell me that the Germans didn't excel at defensive operations if allowed to do so. That is the point again, we play this game not to play under the constraints of a mad man like Hitler or Stalin. Well at least I didn't buy the game for that.

(in reply to el hefe)
Post #: 117
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 9:54:16 PM   
randallw

 

Posts: 1972
Joined: 9/2/2010
Status: offline
I think his statement is that the Germans had not worked on defensive strategy until the 1941-1942 winter.

(in reply to abulbulian)
Post #: 118
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 9:59:24 PM   
el hefe


Posts: 3165
Joined: 10/28/2002
Status: offline
Did I say that the German's couldn't excel at defensive operations? Did I say anything about Normandy or March 1943? I thought the discussion was about the winter of 41-42 in which the Germans had serious issues in coming to grips with their outdated defensive doctrine. The Germans became quick learners and it was to their credit that they adapted to the Russian environment and became quite skilled at defensive operations. Since you are so quick to tell everyone that they need to do some reading and since you back none of your points with any references, let me add a concrete reference to add to your enlightenment called "Standing Fast: German Defensive Doctrine on the Russian Front During World War II. Prewar to March 1943" by the US Army's Command and General Staff College.

http://www.cgsc.edu/carl/resources/csi/wray/wray.asp

I'll even throw in a few passages for free that I think are relevant to the discussion since throwing around any professional prose seems to be less in fashion than throwing around poorly conceived perceptions.

“Particularly misunderstood are the general methods by which the German Army conducted defensive operations against the Soviets. Various Western writers have mistakenly generalized the German defensive system as being a "strongpoint line" backed by powerful mobile reserves or occasionally even a "mobile defense."3 Likewise, the myth persists that "on a tactical level . . .the Germans consistently stopped the Red Army's local offensive."4 The strategic defeat of Hitler's armies in Russia is commonly regarded as having been done in spite of this permanent German tactical ascendancy and accomplished by a Red Army that remained throughout the war "a sluggish instrument that depended on numbers of men and tanks to achieve victories."5 The widespread belief in these myths hampers contemporary analysts in their search for historical lessons and fails to do justice either to the Germans' complex and difficult defensive problems or to the Soviets' tactical skill and adaptability.”

Here's another one.

“The German Elastic Defense doctrine made the following assumptions about modern warfare, and they would be severely tested in the campaign against Russia.
• The burden of any sustained defensive fighting would be borne by infantry divisions, supported only as necessary by panzers held in reserve for counterattack.
• Sufficient quantities of German infantrymen would be available in defensive situations to organize a cohesive defense in depth.
• The principal threat would be posed by the enemy's infantry forces, and therefore, any German defense should be disposed primarily with an eye to defeating a dismounted attack.
• German commanders in defensive operations would be allowed the flexibility to select positions and conduct the defense in an "elastic" fashion as had been the 1918 custom.

None of these assumptions had been disproved in the 1939 or 1940 campaigns. However, within the first two years of the Russian campaign, the German Army conducted major defensive operations under circumstances that invalidated them all.

The fact is that the Germans were largely untrained in major defensive operations IN THE WINTER OF 41-42 and had a poorly conceived defensive doctrine that they couldn't even implement due to vast expanses of Russia and the lack of infantry to conduct said defense. If you have a differing theory that is in contrast to the US Army's own staff study conducted to prepare NATO forces against similiar Soviet attacks, by all means, produce some documentation so we can discuss this.

Trey





quote:

ORIGINAL: abulbulian


quote:

ORIGINAL: el hefe

I'd like to add that two factors in which no one seems to acknowledge was the inadequate German defensive doctrine that was basically a slightly modified World War One concept with little innovation and Soviet complete tactical and strategic surprise. The Germans spent thirty years in developing the classic modern mobile warfare but almost completely neglected their own defensive doctrine which was totally inadequate and incapable of being employed in Russia. The Germans conducted very little defensive training and conducted very few major defensive operations in the thirty years since World War One. It was the defeats during the Soviet counteroffensive combined with Hitler's stand-fast orders that saw the development of the strongpoint defense backed by reserves. The strongpoint defense, which became a German staple for the rest of the war, had no precedent in German doctrine until this winter. I don't think a simple dig in to level 3 with good supplies is enough to stop the counteroffensive cold IMO.

Having said that I think there are some issues that need to be addressed which is the generous German supply situation, massive German disabled losses in the winter, and the near perfect luftwaffe readiness during the blizzard.

Trey

quote:

ORIGINAL: PeeDeeAitch


quote:

ORIGINAL: abulbulian
MY POINT is that if the Germans had they not exhausted their supplies, units, ammo in the last few operations to push for Moscow and prepare for the winter they would have been in much better shape to handle the sov Dec counter attack.

One thing people continue to fail to realize is that the decisions not to send winter clothes and winterizing equipment was Hitler's directive for supplies/ammo/fuel to take priority to push in Nov/Dec. I WANT A PLAYER to choose whether he wants to push or hold the line. Is it that hard to understand? If you give the sov player the ability to retreat units and reap the rewards of that latter, YOU MUST allow the axis player similar strategic choices that impact the game balancing so much... IMO



And you fail to understand my point, no offense intended again. The germans could have stopped the November offensives and sent winter clothing, I understand that - but that would still mean fewer supplies to the front. This not only obviates any offensive, it also (in my opinion) affects the overall status of the units. The entire supply operation was a shoestring affair, as you know.

That supply of winter clothing does nothing to lessen the effect of the winter on the German equipment. Nobody expected fuel to gell, packing grease to freeze solid, oil sumps to harden into immobility. Not only that, how does the training come into effect, over and over one reads of weather related problems from simple daily activities that men weren't prepared for? Also, does such supplies mitigate the psychological effects of the weather, eliminate it, or do nothing for it?

I appreciate you seem to think I do not understand any of the history, logistics, or such of the campaign - but you also seem to fail to see that I was not arguing for simple winter coats, gloves, and such at the front. I was arguing that even with there there were no ways to ready for much of the effects of winter that severe unless the entire system knew that it was coming.

I make allowances for internet memes to push focus on language, and assume an attacking tone on my part - however, my points were not simply winter clothing, as you can see if you reread my initial post, but more the rest of the gamut of problems that no amount of winter clothing could have solved.




Are you joking about Germans not being able to excel at defensive operations? Wow, that is the craziest thing I've ever heard. They were masters at defensive and delaying actions. Just look at what the accomplished in NA and Normandy. Oh and yes, on many occasions on the east front (Manstein's backhand blow 43). If it had not been for Hitler continual meddling in affairs to NOT allow structured retreats and the use of mobile forces to maneuver on the defensive to destroy possible sov thrust.. thing would have been different... longer war on the east?

So don't tell me that the Germans didn't excel at defensive operations if allowed to do so. That is the point again, we play this game not to play under the constraints of a mad man like Hitler or Stalin. Well at least I didn't buy the game for that.




_____________________________

"You want mercy!? I'm chaotic neutral!"

WiTE Scenario Designer
WitW Scenario/Data Team Lead
Sabre 21's perpetual arch-nemisis

(in reply to abulbulian)
Post #: 119
RE: MY 2 CENTS WORTH - 1/23/2011 10:04:38 PM   
2ndACR


Posts: 5648
Joined: 8/31/2003
From: Irving,Tx
Status: offline
Okay, Now at turn 18 in my PBEM game, starting defensive planning. Will document this winter start strength and also am going to save each save file for each turn and ask that my PBEM partner does the same. Save the save files anyway.

I say we all back away a little until we have more in-game data to work with. This is getting a little combative and will lead to nothing constructive. Love the game, but if further balancing is needed, well playing and documenting is how we make that happen.

(in reply to el hefe)
Post #: 120
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