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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg

 
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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/15/2011 8:49:33 PM   
Q-Ball


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OKH STRATEGY CONFERENCE: Sept 4, 1941:

ComradeP makes a good point. What is our objective these remaining 5 turns?

I have opened the turn, and started moving up north. I am over the Volkhov with Infantry. I cleared Leningrad completely, though I did need to use 2 Mobile units already across the Neva to do it. Worth it, because I wanted to get the Finns moving.

So, what next? What are my objectives for the remaining 4-5 turns of good weather I have (plus some Snow)?

STRATEGIC ASSESSMENT:
Von Beanie has generally traded space for time and men, except up by Leningrad. As a result, his losses are extremely low; only 2.1 mil men, 32,000 guns, of those 1.35 Mil are POWs.

That isn't good. Von Beanie has put up a good defense, focusing on Unit and Factory preservation, and generally has acheived those objectives. I have destroyed 129 Divisions, plus a bunch of other units, but that's a low count. Most of those were in the first couple turns.

In terms of progress, Leningrad is an important win, but I have had problems in other areas, pretty much AGS and AGC. I have cleared Bryansk, Sumy, Poltava, and I'm approaching Kharkov, but that's middling progress. I have had only 1 Panzer Corps on the drive to Moscow, and it shows; I haven't taken Rhzev, and I'm just beyond Vyazma. Bleck.

So, what I need to do is obvious: I need to gain space and kill Russians. Where and how?

Initial Thoughts:
Transferring units from Pz Gp 4 isn't that quick, because I don't have a north-south rail line yet (working on it). So, that limits what I can accomplish in terms of a move.

So, here is my initial plan:

1. Transfer 2 Panzer Corps to 3rd Pz Gp in front of Moscow. Objective: Create buffer hexes and threaten Moscow.
2. Send Brand-New Panzer Corps to the Ukraine; we will focus this Corps, plus 1st Panzer Group, on the objective of taking Kharkov and the Donbas Cities. Because these objectives still have factories (though the T-34s are gone from Kharkov...), I hope to force him to fight for fixed geographic objectives, and get some guys killed.

I also need to gain a 10-12 hex buffer I can retreat from all along the front. I will retain 1 large Panzer Corps in AGN sector to help build space over the Volkhov, but mostly because I will need a Fire Brigade up there anyway, and they will be it. By up there, I mostly mean the sector south of the Finnish Line; the Finns don't need backup. They are the backup!

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/15/2011 9:06:15 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Q-Ball, could you post screenshots for the entire front (possibly during turn 13, or after it)? It makes it easier to throw up an idea or two about what you could possibly do now that Leningrad is secured.

Killing Soviet units/men isn't not necessarily a good strategy for the remaining turns if you can't do it in an economical way (a way that won't burn out your units). Even if he has a large army, he'll still have mostly mediocre units. There's no need to attack everywhere. Like I implied in my previous post: it might be a good idea to create a small buffer and just dig in with AGN for example, their gains would probably not justify the losses (unless Von Beanie pulls back for some reason and you can capture territory cheaply). The Finns are fresh, so you could attack with them (possibly attacking and then moving them north a bit again to avoid a few points of extra morale loss due to being south of the no attack line).

I have some suggestions for things that can hurt him, but whether or not they're practical depends on what the front looks like on turn 13.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/15/2011 9:56:19 PM   
Q-Ball


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OKH STRATEGY CONFERENCE:

Gentlemen! Welcome to OKH Headquarters in Vinnitsa, please enjoy the fine Ukrainian delicacies we have plundered from the nearby town.

Attached is a situation map, south of our victorious Leningrad Sector.

You'll have to forgive my primitive screenshot skills!




Attachment (1)

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/15/2011 9:57:10 PM   
Q-Ball


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More Turn 13, Pre-Move:




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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 12:06:29 AM   
Altaris

 

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That carpet delay defense is exactly what my opponent has used against me, and you are correct in that there is no good counter for it. You can't encircle, you can't push far in with infantry, you can't do much of anything. The only counter I've been able to think of at all (and one I did get to work with some effectiveness around Turn 14-16) is to concentrate your striking force into a concentrated attack and just punch east as hard and fast as possible. This forces him to abandon the well entrenched positions on the flanks of the spearhead or risk a major encirclement. Problem is keeping those flanks secured as you push in... at some point you have to straighten those lines up. And while I think most Soviet players right now would pull back to avoid those encirclements, if timed right with a bare-bones holding force, it's probably even worth having some encircled just to slow the Germans down even more.

It's an insanely effective defense. As Soviet players pick up on it, I think German advances are going to slow down immensely.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 12:35:16 AM   
ComradeP

 

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It does require ready units and preferably forts to work, though, as otherwise you can hasty attack your way through as the Axis, even though it will be more costly than normal attacks.

Q-Ball:

My advice:

-Forget about capturing anything north of Kaluga. You're already very thin on the ground, and any longer frontline is just going to be even more difficult to defend than this one. You already have a reasonable buffer to Velikie Luki and a good buffer to Smolensk. You'll lose Vyazma in the winter. No big deal, no reason to weep for the loss.

-As it takes a couple of turns to move your mobile units around, you probably don't have more than about 3 turns for an offensive to work before the mud hits. As such, I'd advise offensives with limited gains.

I have some ideas, but I need to know where you functional rail lines are first. That FBD unit in the AGN area, if it's the only one, should be working on the rail line to Leningrad, preferably through the Baltic states just to be safe. That north-south rail line it's next to now will be partially lost in the blizzard, no need to spend extra time on it. I hope the FBD unit in the lower left corner of the first screenshot is just relocating somewhere and is not actually the closest FBD unit you have to the front east of it.

Also: why are you forming fortified zones in the middle of nowhere?

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 2:18:02 AM   
Q-Ball


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Quick Answers:

RR: That AGN FBD was only building a spur to that front; that area was a major problem for me last game. It is about to turn around, and start building a rail line from Pskov to Vitebsk, and continuing (with help), down the Dnepr. There is already a line to Leningrad. (through Pskov)

There is another FBD you can't see near Bryansk; I am about done there, and will turn around, and start building that "Beltway" line, roughly along the Dnepr.

There is an FBD South of Gomel...that came over the top of the Pripet.

Another is around Cherkassy, working East

11th Army FBD is past Nikolev, to support the Crimea front; that's almost done, then it will turn North.

Overall, I want some spurs, but I need a Beltway back of the front

So, my functional rail lines are limited, due to limited time; not much you can do in 12 turns.

RE: Fortified Zones: Those were just created, on top of size 3-4 towns. I plan to build forts there, then disband before winter. They are fallback positions. I plan to build more to help, but started with the obvious points, where my troops won't die....

< Message edited by Q-Ball -- 3/16/2011 2:19:55 AM >


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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 10:17:37 AM   
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Umh, the Soviet losses are more or less historical (remember early september is before the huge encirclement of Kiev and Viazma / Briansk) but the Soviet lost a lot more ground overall, including Leningrad. So it looks to me that the Soviet failed to trade space to protect its army, partly because of the uber Lvov pocket I presume.

You are more or less on the Typhoon starting line, but with one full month of clear weather ahead (plus a few turn of Mud). I would go all out for Moscow with AGC reinforced by 4th and 1st Panzer Group, most of the FDB and most of the Luftwaffe.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 12:59:48 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Moscow is just another city, it doesn't get you any special bonuses and there's no way in hell you'll be able to hold it until spring if you capture it. What Q-Ball needs now is a defendable, preferably nearly straight north-south line, not more salients.

I'd say it might be a good idea to get a Panzer Group to where 11th Army is now.

You could go all-in for Kharkov with 3 Panzer Groups, with 1 Panzer Group advancing from the south, but that requires some time to work. You'd probably still be able to capture Kharkov and Belgorod even at a rate of 1 hex/turn.

I'd say creating a bit of a buffer near Orel is the way to go, you'll lose the city in winter, but that's no problem. The area in the Belgorod-Orel-Voronezh, although thinly held, is not really valuable from a strategic perspective, so any major push there will just make your defensive line longer.

Aside from possibly Dnepropetrovsk and Zaporozhye, I don't think any city you capture now can really be held in winter.

I'd say moving every mobile unit (including minor Axis cavalry and motorized units) to AGS offers the best option for gaining some useful ground.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 4:23:58 PM   
karonagames


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quote:

I'd say creating a bit of a buffer near Orel is the way to go, you'll lose the city in winter, but that's no problem. The area in the Belgorod-Orel-Voronezh, although thinly held, is not really valuable from a strategic perspective, so any major push there will just make your defensive line longer.


Pieter - don't you think a strong thrust Orel - Voronezh and then feint towards Rostov could unhinge the "Kharkov Carpet"? If the FBDs converts the line between Bryansk and Orel there should be enough supply. I got a buffer from Voronezh to Orel against Trey and was on course to hold the city through the blizzard.

But you are right this could backfire and leave you with an extended front. Swings. Roundabouts.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/16/2011 5:34:49 PM   
ComradeP

 

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quote:

Pieter - don't you think a strong thrust Orel - Voronezh and then feint towards Rostov could unhinge the "Kharkov Carpet"? If the FBDs converts the line between Bryansk and Orel there should be enough supply. I got a buffer from Voronezh to Orel against Trey and was on course to hold the city through the blizzard.

But you are right this could backfire and leave you with an extended front. Swings. Roundabouts.


The main problem is time. He'll need a turn or two to reorganize, so at the earliest he can start making serious attacks on turn 15, which means he has 3 turns to attack, then mud, then another 3 turns (actually more like 2 as the mobile units should be seeking shelter on the third snow turn). Considering the distance he would have to cross, it's risky at best, especially as a pocket the size of what's at Kharkov will take multiple turns to clean up.

I don't think the units north of Orel can be pushed back so far that Orel can be held in the blizzard. The buffer you had in your game with Trey was quite a bit better than this one in that area.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/17/2011 8:41:54 PM   
Q-Ball


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Turn 15, OKH Dispatches:

Good feedback all on next steps.

Comrade, you are correct on the move of the Panzers from AGN; there isn't really enough time to put them anywhere except AGC. They just made it to Vyazma turn 14, so sending them forward this turn.

I really need to make some progress in AGS, because I am still stuck along the Dnepr near Z-Town. Not good. I have sent a Panzer Corps, but my Panzers down there are depleted at the moment.

First Battle of Kharkov:

First thing I did after getting the turn was fight around Kharkov. Von Beanie is fighting very hard here, with Carpets and stacks and pretty much piles and piles of divisions.

Several attacks managed to cut-off two Panzer Divisions. Thankfullly, I had Cavalry on the way from the West, in the form of 2nd and 5th Panzer Divisions, fresh and tanned from Greece




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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/17/2011 8:44:32 PM   
Q-Ball


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Turn 15: First Battle of Kharkov:

Here is the after shot, including losses.

Von Beanie has successfully prevented me from forming big pockets. As a result, his losses are very low for Turn 15. As well as I am doing in AGN, I am doing terrible in AGS, despite the extra Panzer Corps I committed Turn 1. Von Beanie, though, really prioritized AGS for reinforcements to protect his factories. REALLY nasty down there!

You can see total losses. I think I'm in some trouble....




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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/17/2011 11:20:17 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Q-Ball, if you have the time, I'd greatly appreciate it if you could post a screenshot of the losses by type section in the events screen. I'm building a case for suggesting that retreat attrition should be lowered and regular combat casualties should increase, and as you're taking the kind of losses with your mobile units that the Axis should fear, I'd appreciate it if you can post the losses by type.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/19/2011 4:52:10 PM   
Q-Ball


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Turn 17: Last Call

The last 3 turns, we have focused on two things.

First, we want to cause casualties and pocket units. We have a total of 14 in the bank so far, and another 7 surrounded this turn. Not great, but Von Beanie's carpet defense and intensive digging is limiting my pockets.

Second, we want to grab useful space that we can give back in Winter. We managed to take Kharkov with 4 Armament Factories inside, the only industry (besides Minsk of course), that I managed to overrun. V-B reports having to scramble, and in many cases he evacuated just ahead of my approaching Panzers, but he did a good job saving the Soviet industry. At least I forced him to evacuate Tula, though the DONBAS cities are intact.

So, we have 3 turns of mud, and though the Soviets need the break worse than we do, it will be useful to get my tank strength a little higher. I will post full losses right before winter, but at the moment, the Soviet losses are too light: Only 2.5 mil. Credit that to either my poor play or Von Beanie's defense.

Winter Rules:

Let's review again our House Rules pre-1.04:

1: During turns 25-27 the soviets may attack with 4 fronts.
2: During turns 28-34 the soviets may attack with 3 fronts.
3: During turns 35-37 the soviets may attack with 2 fronts.
4: No Front can attack for more than 3 turns in row - i.e. they must rest every 4th turn.
5: On turn 38 the Axis can attack with 1 Army Group.
6: On turn 39 the Axis can attack with 2 Army groups
7: On turns 40 and 41 the Axis can attack with 3 Army groups.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Q-Ball -- 3/19/2011 4:54:26 PM >


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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/19/2011 6:01:17 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Thanks for that losses by type overview.

How many attacks has Von Beanie made that forced you out of a hex?

Also: if you substract your current total AFV strength and your AFV losses from the initial AFV strength, are they close to eachother or is there a big difference? There might be something mysterious going on with German AFV strength. In a game between testers, around 1000 AFV's went missing, at least from the overviews.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 3/19/2011 6:21:20 PM >


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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/19/2011 9:49:25 PM   
Q-Ball


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

Thanks for that losses by type overview.

How many attacks has Von Beanie made that forced you out of a hex?

Also: if you substract your current total AFV strength and your AFV losses from the initial AFV strength, are they close to eachother or is there a big difference? There might be something mysterious going on with German AFV strength. In a game between testers, around 1000 AFV's went missing, at least from the overviews.


1. ATTACKS: I haven't kept track, but at least 15 times he has forced me out of hex. A couple times I was expecting it, but otherwise, he has done that. I would say 8-10 times on mobile units, 4-5 times on German Infantry, and 2-4 times on Hungarian or Romanian troops. I had one Panzer Division rout. I had 4 on one turn just around Kharkov.

The prior game, I think he had maybe 2-4 successful attacks all summer. Definitely more aggressive.

2. AFV LOSSES: I will get a detailed picture next turn. I don't think 1000 are missing, but I'll check....IIRC, I have about 2500 AFVs, and I've suffered 2000 losses.

EDIT: Here it is, start of turn 18:

Current German OOB: 2,540 AFVs
Losses to date: 2,419

It seems like that adds up to me, but let me know if any are missing.

< Message edited by Q-Ball -- 3/20/2011 4:01:40 PM >


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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/20/2011 12:39:34 PM   
ComradeP

 

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Hmm, the documented retreat attrition is low, but I still can't make sense of how combat actually works and why the difference between a Soviet 0.9:1 attack and a 1:1 attack can be thousands of casualties not to mention that the losses can be close to 1:1, even though the only thing that changed is the defender retreating.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/20/2011 9:40:09 PM   
Q-Ball


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Turn 18: First turn of MUD

With 3 Mud turns before the Snow, I have a couple turns to re-organize and prepare for the coming winter.

We eliminated 5 surrounded units this turn, for a total of 40,000 more POWs. 2 more units in Belgorod itself held out, though, to an attack of 6 divisions. They are hopelessly surrounded, so we'll just wait for them to starve a couple turns before trying again.

Snow Offensives: We are definitely going to attack in the snow, to accomplish a couple objectives.

First, we want to disrupt the Soviets right before they attack. Last time vs. Von Beanie, I managed to rout 20-30 units, and take 100,000 POWs during the snow, so I hope for a repeat.

Second, I want to create space. Whatever ground I take, I plan to immediately give back starting the first turn of Blizzard, but the more I take, the more I have to give.

Spending APs:

I am spending APs to improve leadership, and move SU's around.

I want at least one Mixed Flak unit in every Infantry Corps, along with 3 artillery units. The Mixed Flak has 88s, and we need those for Anti-tank duties. Hopefully in this game, they eat T-34s like they did IRL.

I am also starting to re-organize, to move non-essential personnell out of Russia for the Winter. This is mostly in Airbases and HQs. Tentatively, I am taking the following steps:

1. Consolidating LW units, to get to a minimum of Airbases. I am moving 6-8 LW AB units back to Germany. Come spring, I will probably re-activate a couple and disband the rest for replacements. Either way, they won't suffer losses all winter in the open. This also goes for Romanian Air Units.
2. All HQs are being placed in a city or town, if possible. The Army Group and OKH HQs will spend the entire winter in warm beds.
3. The Hungarian, Slovak, and Italian Air Units and HQs, I'm just pulling out of Russian entirely. For what they bring, why suffer the losses.
4. Nearly all German Army AB units are being sent back. Probably most will be disbanded in the spring.

No need to disband anything now, since I have already have 180,000 Manpower in the German pool and climbing. I can defer any decisions until SPRING.




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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/21/2011 7:01:56 PM   
Q-Ball


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Turn 19-20: Last two turns of MUD:

The last two turns of Mud were relatively uneventful, though a few combats for Mud.

I split alot of my Infantry Divisions into Regts, for the sole purpose of digging (I plan to recombine for winter). Von Beanie hit and retreated one of those Regts near Orel.

I also liquidated the 15,000 defenders of Belgorod, though they lasted longer than I expected (took 2 attacks)

I am spending APs on leader replacements, and moving SUs around. The German SU situation is a bit of a mess at game start; some HQs have piles of units, and some are empty.

I will post more, the first turn of our SNOW offensive, which I expect to be limited in scope, as Von Beanie has pretty good trenches and units up front.

Getting ready for Winter, otherwise....hopefully this game lasts into the spring!

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/21/2011 7:44:48 PM   
Mynok


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Are you finding enough Mixed Flak units to do that? I've not been able to....but my search has not been comprehensive yet. I usually start SU moving on turn 2 to get some artillery in every corps. Best time to do it is early since the HQs are closer then.

I wonder what will happen with rail repair as your group HQs will be in Poland.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 3:53:35 PM   
Q-Ball


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mynok


Are you finding enough Mixed Flak units to do that? I've not been able to....but my search has not been comprehensive yet. I usually start SU moving on turn 2 to get some artillery in every corps. Best time to do it is early since the HQs are closer then.

I wonder what will happen with rail repair as your group HQs will be in Poland.


There are lots of Mixed Flak, alot of them are stuffed into Army HQs and other units. But they are there; definitely enough for one for every Infantry Corps.

I am keeping the Army Group HQs in Russia, but keeping them in a City the whole time. At the moment, AGS is at Poltava, and the Rail Repair it's doing is relatively useful. AGNs is less-so, it's at Talinin.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 3:55:48 PM   
Mynok


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Talinn....do the Soviets have amphib abilities up there? I can't recall.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 4:11:09 PM   
Q-Ball


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mynok


Talinn....do the Soviets have amphib abilities up there? I can't recall.


Nope, not in the Baltic. The Kreigsmarine rules those waves.

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 4:39:28 PM   
Mynok


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Do you find the mixed flak are committed to combat regularly? Ever watched a combat on slow where they were committed to see what damage they do? I'm tempted to start doing this to figure out what use most of those flak units are in combat. In real life, high-ROF small flak guns were pretty useful against any kind of soft target.

Other support units I want to do this with:

* Panzerjaegers
* Guns (arty...want to see if they do counterbattery fire)
* Stugs
* MG battalions
* AT guns (Allied units have numbers of these)


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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 4:44:01 PM   
cap_and_gown


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why armies in cities? aren't combat units more important to conserve?

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RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 4:58:40 PM   
Q-Ball


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The ARMY HQs for the Winter will probably end-up in a rear city; close enough to the front to be in range, but well back. I am thinking Minsk, Riga, and Vinnitsa.

Any cityclose to the front will have Panzers parked in it.

Airbases will be put in towns with population. In fact, alot of the Luftwaffe is being pulled for winter; I am keeping most fighters and alot of bombers, but trying to economize and limit the number of airbases. This is also true for the Romanians, who REALLY have excess airbase units.

Pretty much any city on a Railway back of the front will have units wintering there.

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(in reply to cap_and_gown)
Post #: 117
RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 5:05:25 PM   
karonagames


Posts: 4680
Joined: 7/10/2006
From: The Duchy of Cornwall, nr England
Status: offline
Don't forget about:

15.3.2.2. SUPPORT UNIT ASSIST TO FORT LEVEL CONSTRUCTION
Construction and engineer support units attached to headquarters units in the combat unit’s
chain of command can assist those combat units in constructing fort levels if the applicable
headquarters unit passes a leader admin check. The headquarters unit that the combat unit
is directly attached must be within five hexes of that combat unit. In addition, no more than
three levels of headquarters units in the combat units chain of command can assist, and each
higher headquarters unit that may provide support units must be within five hexes of the next
lower level headquarters unit. For example, in order for construction and engineer support
units to assist down the entire eligible chain of command, a German combat unit attached to a Corps headquarters unit must be able to trace five hexes back to that Corps HQ unit. The
Corps HQ unit in turn must be able to trace five hexes back to the Army HQ unit to which it is
attached, and finally the Army HQ unit must be able to trace five hexes back to the Army Group
HQ.


With the upcoming changes to entrenchment in 1.04, this is going to be even more important.

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(in reply to Q-Ball)
Post #: 118
RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/22/2011 6:39:24 PM   
Mynok


Posts: 12121
Joined: 11/30/2002
Status: offline

I agree. It also makes me suspect that the reason I can't get army-level const bns to repair rail is because they are digging. I assume they won't do both?


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(in reply to karonagames)
Post #: 119
RE: Leningrad was Petrograd was St. Petersburg - 3/23/2011 2:42:13 PM   
Schmauser

 

Posts: 36
Joined: 1/24/2011
Status: offline
I mentioned a similar idea to Bob yesterday not knowing you were discussing this already.

My thought was to push as many SU's to the higher HQ's (especially OKH) and park them in a City or urban hex in the rear. The idea being to keep them out of combat and away from the blizzard effects. This would place the burden on the rifle squads and the organic artillery/at, but IMHO would work within Bob's model of rifle squads being the threshold for effective winter defense. Manpower and armaments would then be channeled to rebuilding the infanty divisions.

Would appreciate it if you could elaborate further on your specific objectives.

(in reply to Q-Ball)
Post #: 120
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