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THIRD REICH 42-45 1.5.2 - mike1984 (Allies) vs USXpat (Axis)

 
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THIRD REICH 42-45 1.5.2 - mike1984 (Allies) vs USXpat (... - 5/8/2012 10:47:30 AM   
mike1984

 

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***I'M USING THIS SAME THREAD FOR THE NEW AAR. THIS GAME RAN INTO A SNAG THAT FORCED IT TO END AT TURN 15. SKIP AHEAD A FEW POSTS FOR THE START OF THE NEW GAME.***

Cross-posted from my site.

TR 42-45 1.5.1 - ALLIED vs Mark - T003/22May42

Okay kids, here we go. Not only am I playtesting this scenario once again as the Allies, but it's against the man himself, designer Mark Dabbs. He's in Odessa, while I'm in DC. So the time difference is pretty stark. But we're getting through with about one turn per day, sometimes more.

I've decided to wait until turn 3 to start this AAR because the first two are pretty boring. It starts out the way you'd expect with this one, with most of the action near Kharkov and Rostov on the Eastern Front. Enjoy...

RUSSIA

Sectors: Velikie Luki-Rzhev-Vyazma
This isn't so much a bad situation and just one I must be careful handling. It's a line "correction," pulling back from the bulge I started with. The 39th Army seems to have been caught by the Germans, but I'm sure a few divisions can get out safely. The rest of the line should be fine, particularly if I can get at least one more army in the region to bolster the reserves.



Sectors: Voroshilovgrad-Rostov
In order to hold Rostov as long as possible--delaying the Axis advance into the Caucasus--I've ordered the 2nd Shock Army down from Lenningrad. The 2nd will defend the city, flanked to the north by the 56th Army. This will be pretty much it for reinforcements to the region, as I've had to send the 44th Army farther north toward Yelets. If I can evacuate the 47th Army off the Crimean Penninsula, it will move toward Rostov. But I fear the city will fall by then.



Sectors: Kursk-Voronezh-Kharkov
The larger region north of Rostov is the most volatile right now along the Eastern Front. Two full armies--6th and 57th--are cut off by the Panzer divisions, as the rest of the line begins to form southward from Voronezh. The 47th Army--shipped up from the Caucasus--is staging in the southern sector behind the 3rd Guards Tank Army. I do not expect this long, thin line to hold very long. But delaying the Germans a few weeks would help things all over the theatre.



NORTH AFRICA

Tobruk remains in British hands, but that's only because the Germans and Italians haven't yet attacked. I'm expecting that to come next week(turn), as I've spotted the Afrika Korps forming up west of my disheveled line. I'm currently shipping the British V and VIII Corps down from England. They are laying over on Malta, and will arrive in Alexandria next week.

< Message edited by mike1984 -- 6/10/2012 3:07:17 PM >
Post #: 1
T004/29May42 - 5/9/2012 2:32:52 AM   
mike1984

 

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Cross-posted from my site.

TR 42-45 1.5.1 - ALLIED vs Mark - T004/29May42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Voroshilovgrad-Rostov
The I SS Panzers have broken the line between the 18th & 24th Armies, but it should be contained for a little while. No reinforcements are scheduled to arrive for at least two more weeks, so this situation appears to be a perilous one to say the least. I've marked the Brandenberg Commandos that were shipped by rail all the way from Berlin. They are camping near Stalino, and I fully expect them to be used in the likely German breakout attempt. I'm looking for airdrop operations against the bridges and railroads along my lines of retreat and supply. For now, I'm getting rear-guard units ready to control damage.



FINLAND

There is some action coming in the north. But it's just small skirmishes for now. The Germans are taking some units from Norway to push my Russians.

NORTH AFRICA

Rommel and the Italians are in position for their offensive toward Tobruk and Egypt. I'm beginning the evacuation from Lybia, while the lead divisions from the V & VIII Corps are arriving in Alexandria.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 2
RE: T004/29May42 - 5/9/2012 3:26:51 AM   
governato

 

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This is going to be fun! It'd be useful for the other designers to have some update on losses and replacements along the way. And the occasional screenshot of the whole front.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 3
T005/5Jun42 - 5/9/2012 4:39:53 PM   
mike1984

 

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TR 42-45 1.5.1 - ALLIED vs Mark - T005/5Jun42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Voroshilovgrad-Rostov
The arrival of another SS Panzer division has changed the course of the Battle for Rostov. The hole punched through by the I SS Panzer Korps will likely prove to be the end for my Russian defenders. Still, I'm holding the ground as long as possible. Control of the entire Caucasus and its oil fields hinges on holding Rostov. Reinforcements are slowly arriving from Siberia. Due soon are some powerful formations, including the 60th, 62nd, 63rd Armies. However, the first of those fresh armies won't get to the Eastern Front for yet another month.



NORTH AFRICA

Sectors: Tobruk-Alexandria
The arrival of four British Corps from England nearly guarantees the successful defense of Egypt. Tobruk could theoretically hold, but unlike against the PO, Mark should be able to take the city with some effort. I'm only leaving South African troops of the X & XXX Corps in the defense of Tobruk. But they're quality units.

The 1st Battalion of the 1st South African Division has made a gallant stand in Gazala, as has the 3rd Battalion of the 50th Division at Bir Hacheim. These delaying actions--nothing short of suicide missions--have proven frustrating for my opponent, as it deprives him of crucial crossroads, including the rail line to Tobruk.

Meanwhile, the rest of the X & XXX Corps ran like hell back to Alexandria. I'm working on a defensive line along the historical El Alamein positions, sending the I, V, VIII Corps forward from Alexandria.


(in reply to governato)
Post #: 4
T006/12Jun42 - 5/10/2012 6:43:22 AM   
mike1984

 

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TR 42-45 1.5.1 - ALLIED vs Mark - T006/12Jun42

RUSSIA

Sector: Rostov
The German panzers have raced around my right flank, crossing the Don east of Rostov. I've fortunately saved the 44th Army in reserve for such a situation, but it's only meant to be a delaying action. Elements of the 56th and 18th Armies have sliced the Germans off from their main force north of the city, but again, this will be short-lived. There are two very easy river crossing points northeast of Shakhty, which are completely undefended by my Russian troops. If Mark realizes this before I can get some screening units there, it's just a matter of time before the entire Don Front comes crumbling back to Stalingrad.



AFRICA

Sectors: Tobruk-Alexandria
Tobruk remains in Commonwealth control, but the DAK and Italians are marching quickly eastward. I'm expecting a seige of the city in the next week or so, while I continue to dig in near El Alamein.

< Message edited by mike1984 -- 5/10/2012 6:44:01 AM >

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Post #: 5
OOF! - 5/11/2012 12:24:34 PM   
mike1984

 

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As it goes with playtesting, we've ran aground...

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3098859

We will start a new game once Mark updates the file.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 6
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T001: 05.08.42 - 5/29/2012 7:05:36 AM   
mike1984

 

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T001 05.08.42

RUSSIA
Sectors: Kursk-Kharkov-Rostov
I've tried the fighting withdrawl strategy here before. As a result of it I lost no less than two full armies. This time, I'm not being so adventurous. I've ordered all Armies between Kursk and Voroshilovgrad to evacuate east toward the Don River. Forming at Kursk, the front will make a right-angle (1) to Voronezh. From there, the 38 and 9 armies--the two completely lost last time when I didn't evacuate immediately--will use the cover of the first river as a natural defensive position (2), with the Don behind them as the fallback line. The remaining few armies are evacuating from the Kharkov sector (3), and should be able to get out with minimal losses. A few Op. Groups are holding back to screen the withdrawl. Though I'm not sure what exactly I'm going to do with this part of the front, the 24 Army and 3 Gds Tank Army are digging in (4) while waiting for more orders. They could be sent south to Rostov, or plug holes elsewhere in the line. Finally, the Rostov sector (5) is holding tight for the moment. There is still a great debate at headquarters about whether or not to invest too much manpower into the Rostov defense. But it will significantly slow the Germans and Romanians as they move into the Caucasus. As long as I keep this to a delaying action, and not a full-fledged static defense, it should provide the maximum benefit to the lowest cost possible.

(Yes, I know the slide date is wrong)

GLOBAL
No other major movements or actions to report.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 7
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T002: 05.15.42 - 5/29/2012 7:07:51 AM   
mike1984

 

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T002 05.15.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Velikie Luki-Rzhev
The managed withdrawal from the Vyazma salient has gone well. Not perfectly, but what can you expect in war? The line is forming (1) from the 4 Shock Army to the 10 Guards Army, with the 22, 41, and 39 Armies moving into the void. I'm concerned about the 39 Army (2), which is getting squeezed by the XXIII Korps and XLI Panzer Korps. Once this withdrawal is complete, this sector should remain quiet for a while.



Sectors: Orel-Kursk
I've been caught off guard here, with a much larger attack coming than the last time I played against Mark. He is using the textbook Blitzkreig tactic of punching a hole on both sides of the defenders (1 & 2) using the Panzers, sending them in a pincer move around the flanks (3), and then crushing the pocket with the infantry up the middle. The 3 & 48 Armies are in danger of being completely cut off, as is the 13 Army (4). There is not a single Russian soldier between the Panzers and Yelets. I'm going to have to pull reserves from other areas (like the already-threatened Rostov sectors) to plug this hole until more reinforcements arrive in a few weeks.



Sectors: Kharkov-Rostov
The evacuation of the entire Kharkov front went splendidly. All five armies (38, 9, 57, 37, 6) made it (1) to safety. However, I'm going to have to order them across the river sooner than expected. This is partly to facilitate the defense of Yelets (previous slide), and partly to help in the south near Rostov. The 1 Panzer Armee is committing itself fully to the push on Rostov. I'm afraid this area will fall into German hands much more quickly than the last game. Compounding this problem is that I'll likely have to transfer the 2 Shock Army (near Stalingrad) and possibly even the 54 Army (east of Stalingrad) to the forward defenses. I don't have enough strength to simply pull back to a defensive line in the east, so delaying the Axis for at least three or four weeks is critical. Otherwise, I'm not sure I can hold the oil fields to the south, or even Stalingrad to the east.



Sectors: Caucasus
I'm getting a bit ahead of myself here, planning the defense of the Caucasus oil fields at Maikop and Grozny. But if I can establish some decent fortifications in these three gaps, I can use the natural defensive positions in the mountains. This should only require about five or six more armies. Unfortunately, I don't have five or six armies to spare right now.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 8
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T003: 05.22.42 - 5/29/2012 7:09:34 AM   
mike1984

 

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T003 05.22.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Veliki Luki-Rzhev
Things are settling down now, as the defensive line forms. The Germans are mopping up the left over divisions that were caught up in the withdrawal. As reinforcements arrive, I'll have to send at least one army to this sector as a reserve.



Sectors: Orel-Yelets-Voronezh
The main objective here is to contain and delay. There are three Op Groups just north of the rag-tag defenders east of Orel (1), that will disembark and enter the battle this upcoming week. There isn't much between the three German Korps and wide open Russian countryside north of Yelets. The 13 and 40 Armies are as good as gone (2), while the 21 Army is trying its best to hold the open space in front of Yelets. Once reinforcements can arrive, the line will form along the railroad (3), hopefully keeping the valuable rail hub at Yelets out of German hands.



Sectors: Kharkov-Rostov
This entire sectors has nearly evaporated in the span of two weeks. I'm not dedicating the kind of force to this area that I did the last time around. But still, I didn't expect three armies to simply melt away. The 12 Army is getting across the river (1) and blowing bridges behind them. The German III Panzer Korps has free reign north of Rostov (2), completely cutting off what's left of the 18 Army. At Rostov, the 56 Army will try to delay the German crossing of the Don River (3). The 2 Shock Army and 8 Army are stationed in Stalingrad, with the 2 Shock fanning out to cover the river crossings. The 54 Army, originally sent to Stalingrad, has been ordered south to Grozny to prepare those defenses.


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FYI - 5/29/2012 7:10:47 AM   
mike1984

 

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I'm trying to get these posted as quickly as possible. We're up to about T019 in real life, while my own blog is up to T007. So I'll get this copy of the AAR up to speed with my blog.

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Post #: 10
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T004: 05.29.42 - 6/1/2012 11:08:19 AM   
mike1984

 

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T004 05.29.42

RUSSIA

Monthly Review - May '42
Three major stages of action this month on the Russian Front. Near Rzhev (1), I ordered the managed withdrawal from a dangerous salient. This freed up some valuable units, as well as allowed this section of the front to dig in with reserves. The line was entirely too thin before the move.

To the south, German, Romanian and Hungarian forces made a heavy push (2) coinciding with my second managed withdrawal to the Don River. The position was a big problem area from the start of this scenario, and the last time I did this, it wasn't so organized. The result was significant loss. But this time, with plenty of screening units to hold the Axis from getting a solid shot at my armies, only two formations were lost (13 Army, 40 Army) north of Kharkov.

The second stage of the Axis advance (3) pushed my lines farther east, but not farther than the original stop line at the Don. Voronezh remains well-defended with reserves to spare, while the sectors to the south have more time to dig in and develop a plan. The Panzers have had much more success in the Orel and Kursk sectors than those marching toward Rostov and Stalingrad. The defense of Maikop and Grozny in the Caucasus should improve as more units are sent south to dig into the mountains.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 11
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T005: 06.05.42 - 6/1/2012 11:09:54 AM   
mike1984

 

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T005 06.05.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
Two breakthroughs in this front. The significant break came south of Yelets (1), with the 21 Army melting under the strong pressure from the German XXIV Panzer and VII Korps. The Op Groups shipped down from the northern sectors (embarked east of Yelets) will have to plug the hole for now, until more units are available. West of Voronezh (2), the 38 Army gave way in one small sector, but I expect this one to be covered relatively easily. The 57 Army has units to spare, and aren't facing any real threat due to its position behind the Don River.



Intelligence Report
Recon has spotted at least two full corps, the German LVI and XVII Korps, being shipped by rail from the Rzhev sectors all the way down to the Rostov sector. This could provide a big boost to the German prospects in the North Caucasus.

Sectors: Rostov-Stalingrad
Axis progress has slowed significantly in this part of the Russian Front, but I'm not expecting that to last very long. The I SS Panzer is spearheading a new push across the Don River east of Rostov (1), while three full German Korps, supported by the Romanian II Corps, are near to capturing the city. To the north (2), delaying actions by rear guard has helped hold the tide at bay. Around Stalingrad (3) the 2 Shock Army is all along for now, spread incredibly thinly around the city. The 34 Army has arrived from north of Velikie Luki, and will take up defensive positions along the Don, just west of Stalingrad. This should free up the entire right wing of the 2 Shock to move south, bolstering the rest of the formation southwest of the city.



AFRICA

Sector: Tobruk
The X and XXX British Corps are holding on by a thread. The DAK (Das Afrika Korps) isn't wasting any time advancing on Tobruk, and it's paying early dividends.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 12
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T006: 06.12.42 - 6/1/2012 11:15:40 AM   
mike1984

 

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T006 06.12.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
The dangerous situation here has been contained by the quick arrival of the 3 Guards Tank Army from northwest of Stalingrad. The Guards armor slammed into the XXIV Panzer Korps that was already tired from a strong attack on the 28 Army, pushing back the Axis a few miles. Divisions from the 38 Army's reserve also plugged the gap northwest of Voronezh. These sectors seem stabilized for now.



Sectors: Rostov
Rostov is nearly fallen, but holds on by a thread. There wasn't much need to update this sector, but it's worth mentioning that the Axis could soon posess a valuable rail and supply hub leading into the Caucasus. Progress by the Axis in this part of the Russian Front has slowed so much, I'm wondering if it was a planned time to recoup losses and readiness. Any offensive across a river is tolling, particularly one that was decently defended, as was the case here.



FINLAND

Sectors: Kandalaksha
A new area has erupted in combat, with the German XXXVI Korps supported by an unconfirmed Finish Corps attacking and capturing Kandalaksha. This severs a critical rail line up to Murmansk, but doesn't offer much more to the Axis. Murmansk still has access to the sea. I might have to send an army, or a few Op Groups, up to Murmansk just to play it safe.



AFRICA

Sector: Tobruk
Toburk has fallen within three weeks of the DAK/Italian offensive. This is easily the quickest the city has fallen, and Mark has admitted that it's the first time in more than 20 play tests that Tobruk has been captured by the Axis. Once the rail line can be repaired, this will provide a serious supply boost to the DAK and Italians. Looks like Africa won't bog down this time around.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 13
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T007: 06.19.42 - 6/1/2012 11:17:32 AM   
mike1984

 

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T007 06.19.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh-Stalingrad-Caucasus
Just a quick review of the southern half of the Russia Front. It's been a quiet two weeks since the initial assault on the Yelets-Voronezh sector was repulsed. The Axis are still staging on the far side of the Don River. Once the push south and east begins, however, I'm expecting a tough fight to hold back the tide.



AFRICA

Sectors: Tobruk-Alexandria
The fall of Tobruk is likely to create a better supply situation for the DAK and Italians under Rommel, but my position in front of El Alamein is incredibly strong. There are Italian paratroopers at the air fields near Tobruk, so that's something to keep an eye on. I'm shipping the VIII Corps down from England, while the I Corps is already in Malta, ready to arrive in Alexandria.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 14
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T008: 06.26.42 - 6/1/2012 11:18:20 AM   
mike1984

 

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T008 06.26.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
With a renewed push on Yelets and Voronezh, the Germans have punched a hole in the line (1) north of Yelets. The reconstituted 48 and 3 Armies have been shipped to the front earlier than I wanted to commit them to battle. Their readiness is in the low teens right now, meaning they are going to face enemy fire with little chance of success. This is all meant to delay the Germans until a large contingent of fresh reinforcements due the next two weeks. The other problem areas are directly in front of Yelets and south of the city (2), where the armored op group has held, but by a hair. The 3 Guards Tank Army is standing firm in the center of the sectors, offering a foundation for the entire line. Near Voronezh (3), the 21 Army lost some ground to a concerted effort by three German infantry corps. The 18 Army is full of reconstituted units, similar to the 48/3 group to the north. No counterattacks were made this turn, but again, it's all about delaying the Axis offensive until reinforcements arrive in bulk over the next two weeks.


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Post #: 15
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T009: 07.03.42 - 6/1/2012 11:19:48 AM   
mike1984

 

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T009 07.03.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
The Germans actually withdrew (1) from their gains last week. I've sent every single reconstituted unit into this area, hoping to simply clog up the path toward Yelets and/or Voronezh. I think it's worked. Though the Germans still have superior strength and likely readiness, my defensive positions are growing stronger each week. I wasn't able to send the fresh armies (60, 63 Armies) into this area, due to the need for them farther south. However, more armies are scheduled to arrive over the next two weeks. They will have a first objective of relieving the Yelets-Voronezh front line troops.



ELSEWHERE

North Africa - The DAK and Italians are mopping up the remaining Commonwealth troops, but little action otherwise. There are now five British Corps in Egypt.

North Caucasus - The Germans and Romanians are crossing the Don in force now. No major engagements since the fall of Rostov. The Wehrmacht is not making a play for any of the territory on the eastern side of the Don from Stalingrad northward. There were at least two Panzer Korps being shipped by rail to this area, possibly three total. It signals a coming effort to capture the oil fields at Maikop and Grozny.

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Post #: 16
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T010: 07.10.42 - 6/1/2012 11:21:09 AM   
mike1984

 

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*I'm now caught up with where I am on my web site AAR. Be sure to check out the past turns if you're just joining in on this turn.*

T010 07.10.42

GLOBAL

Aside from some local skirmishes, this week has been eerily quiet. Nothing to report. Some Russian reinforcements have arrived and are being moved toward the front. The RAF has busted a few bridges in Holland. And the Afrika Korps is still massing after the fall of Tobruk.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 17
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T011: 07.17.42 - 6/5/2012 1:50:06 PM   
mike1984

 

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T011 07.17.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
Two fresh armies (60, 7 Gds) have arrived, but I've only committed one to battle so far. The 60 Army has bolstered the buckling center, between the 3 Gds Tank Army and the 38 Army. The 7 Gds Army will disembark next turn and build up its readiness. If the front lines can hold long enough, I'm hoping to use the 7 Gds in a counter offensive to drive back some of the most forward German divisions. This should give me more time to gather reinforcements as they arrive, and relieve the exhausted front line armies in this bloody stretch of the Russian Front.


Sector: Maikop
With three armies digging in, I'm confident this positions can hold off a mid-sized offensive for at least a week or two. If I must fall back into the mountains, so be it. The terrain south of this sector is so brutal, I don't imagine the Germans continuing any attack immediately following the eventual capture of Maikop. There are plenty of fresh German corps moving into this area via Rostov. I'm anticipating an impressive offensive southward from the Axis armies. Also to note, the Brandenbergers haven't been used yet. Could this be the first instance? It wouldn't make much sense to me. Capturing Maikop is good, but not like capturing Stalingrad or even Grozny.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 18
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T012: 07.24.42 - 6/5/2012 1:51:34 PM   
mike1984

 

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T012 07.24.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Maikop
What was once a stable situation in the south has suddenly turned dangerous. Mark even admitted he wasn't expecting such an easy breakthrough at Krasnodar, but has taken advantage quickly. There are three Panzer corps now pressing across the river, and the Brandenbergers have been deployed to take advantage of my fragile situation. Since the Germans have already crossed two full Panzer divisions, and are pressing in two other spots along the river, I have no choice but to fall back into the mountains. The passes along the Black Sea coast offer a fantastic defensive opportunity for me, but the trick is getting as much of my force out of here as possible.


Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
A few gains by the Germans in these sectors, but nothing major. The Russians should be able to push back next week.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 19
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T013: 07.31.42 - 6/7/2012 9:48:47 AM   
mike1984

 

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T013 07.31.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Maikop
The German breakthrough is gaining steam with each shot fired. My lines are shattered, and now it's just a great race to the mountain passes and the sea. At first, I counted only three Panzer corps, but now I see that four were waiting to pounce. This, combined with the infantry corps, was too much for even my three armies plus another two to defend against. My hope here is to salvage a few divisions to defend the mountain pass along the Black Sea. Worse yet, the mobile supply points have been caught up in the panic, and are likely going to be destroyed in retreat.



Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
Though it looks dangerous, the small breakthroughs by the Germans are only more of the same in this part of the Russian Front. I should have little trouble plugging up the two open holes (1 & 2), while still maintaining my reserve force of the 7 Gds Army. My plans for a counter offensive hinge on the front line divisions holding off the Germans for at least another two weeks. Somewhat surprising is how well my Yelets Sector forces have held against the 2 Panzer Armee, which wasn't able to puncture the defenses.



Sectors: Murmansk
Last week, I had the 33 Army all ready to sail from Archangelsk, but completely forgot about them. So now the Germans and Finns are pressing on Murmansk. The 33 Army won't arrive until next week. I should be able to hold until then. This would be a major loss for the Allies.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 20
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T014: 08.07.42 - 6/10/2012 12:13:47 AM   
mike1984

 

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T014 08.07.42

RUSSIA

Sectors: Maikop
As my Russian divisions scamper toward Tuapse and the fortified positions in the overlooking mountains, the Germans press on, crushing division after division on their deadly ride to the sea. I wish there were more to report here, but right now, it's a bloodbath.



Sectors: Murmansk
Murmansk is stabilizing with the arrival (finally) of the 33 Army. If things get sketchy here again, I can ship another army up, but I'd much rather focus on protecting the Caucasus oil fields and the rail hubs at Yelets and Voronezh.



ELSEWHERE

Yelets-Voronezh - Speaking of these sectors, it's just continued fighting with no progress on either side.

Egypt - No action since the fall of Tobruk. Axis supply is dwindling. It's only a matter of time before I must consider a counter offensive. But I'm not that brave just yet.

NW Europe - Bridge busting missions continue with the RAF. Holland has lost nearly half its bridges, as the attacks shift toward Belgium.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 21
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T015: 08.14.42 - 6/10/2012 12:15:05 AM   
mike1984

 

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T015 08.14.42

RUSSIA

Theatre Update
German Panzers are rolling along past Maikop. However, my ace in the hole is the narrow passes in the mountain range. The German armor does best in open terrain, as evidenced in the previous weeks' combat to the north. I've shipped by rail three armies from the Yelets-Voronez sectors down to Astrakhan, one of them already transported by sea down to Grozny. I simply cannot afford to lose Grozny this early, if at all. It seems like a long shot, but delaying for at least five more weeks will offer a great reward. That will come in the form of about 10 fresh Russian armies, including at least two Guards armies. That will allow me to change the focus from the Caucasus to the norther sectors.



Very preliminary plans are being made for a large offensive in the Velikie Luki area, just north of where I staged the controlled withdrawal during the first two weeks of this scenario. There are three shock armies there on the front lines now. With the arrival of reinforcements in five to six weeks, I'll have enough to make a decent push, forcing the Germans to pull troops from other sectors.

ELSEWHERE

Africa - The Afrika Korps and Italians are slowly inching toward my lines west of El Alamein.

NW Europe - A strategic bombing campaign by the RAF is beginning to target supply and industry targets.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 22
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T016: 08.21.42 - 6/10/2012 12:16:18 AM   
mike1984

 

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Things were so quiet this turn, I'm pretty much skipping it. Plus, I forgot to write up the AAR for this turn when it happened, so I'm not going back and doing it with the benefit of hindsight. After all, the point of these AARs is to get a stream of thought through the scenario.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 23
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T017: 08.28.42 - 6/10/2012 3:10:23 PM   
mike1984

 

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T017 08.28.42

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
The battle for Leningrad begins in earnest, as the rail guns open up with a terrific roar. No less than five German corps, including the XXXIX Panzer, pressure the outer defenses, focusing on Kirovsk and a few miles west. Some of my Russian division are pushed back out of the works, but are covered by reserves that join the battle. The initial battles are already bloody affairs, and I only anticipate it will worsen as the siege rolls onward.

AFRICA

Sector: El Alamein
I've ordered forward a few detachments from the XXX Corps, with the objectives of 1) scouting the strength of the approaching DAK and Italians, and 2) draw the lead elements of the Axis army into early combat. The Axis forces are already weary from a sharp battle for Tobruk. And despite the increased supply gained for a while from capturing the city, staging a fighting advance toward El Alamein is probably not what Rommel wants right now. As for the El Alamein defensive line, I've massed the tanks of the I and X Corps to the south, with the XXX covering northward to the Mediterranean, and the XIII Corps in immediate reserve. There is also the VIII Corps back near Alexandria. If the DAK attempts to strike at the XXX Corps (I expect this, since that is the only decent supply road to keep the German panzers running) I can swing the I and X Corps in a right wheel, slamming into the German right flank. But this is getting a bit ahead of myself. Let's see what Rommel (okay, Mark) does now that he's faced with resistance so far out in front of the British lines.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 24
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T018: 09.04.42 - 6/12/2012 2:24:50 PM   
mike1984

 

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T018 09.04.42

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
The Germans have thrown another wave at the outer defenses of Leningrad, but with no success in breaking the line. The Russian troops there are falling back and filling the gaps as the battles rage, but I fear it's only a matter of time before the lines contract inward toward the city limits.

Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
Now that I've massed four Guards armies between Yelets and Voronezh, I'm hoping I can pressure the Axis lines enough to force them back a few miles. Giving these cities a little breathing room will go a long way to solving my problems in the central regions of the Russian Front. And once my large chunk of reinforcements arrive in three weeks, I can use them to relieve the Guards on the front line here. Freeing up the Guards is critical over the next month, as I expect to need them in the south near Stalingrad and the Caucasus.

Sector: Astrakhan
This wasn't part of my original plan for the defense of Russia, but I'm massing armies in the Astrakhan sector. So far, I have four fully-deployed armies (53, 56, 40, 39) and three more disembarking or staging (48, 62, 47) to be deployed. They are all supported by various Op Groups. Most of the armies in this area now are from the Yelets-Voronezh sectors, since the Guards armies have taken over operations up there. The objective here in the south is to build a large striker contingent based on the enemy's flanks as it splits its force to go north toward Stalingrad, or south toward Grozny. I'm guessing Mark won't leave just a few screening units between the two heads of his offensive, since it would be ripe for the picking with all these Russians just sitting and building up readiness for battle.




AFRICA

Sector: El Alamein
Rommel is inching closer to my defenses at El Alamein. However, it doesn't seem likely (or logical) that the DAK and Italians would launch an all-out attack on my British lines there. I'm going to give this situation a little more time to develop. If the opportunity presents itself, I'll use the "Right Wheel" tactic to engage the DAK's flank, while punching a few Italian units backward in the process. However, if I feel like this is going to bog down into a staring match, it will be in the Allies' best interest to simply leave a large enough contingent in Egypt to guard the roads to Suez, and ship the rest back to England for a planned invasion elsewhere.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 25
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T019: 09.11.42 - 6/12/2012 2:27:25 PM   
mike1984

 

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T019 09.11.42

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
Kirovsk has fallen, not a moment later than I anticipated. It took about three attacks for the Germans to finally break the line. To the southwest, another concerted effort, this time including an SS Panzer division, failed after three attempts to break the line. As Mark put it, "that other division deserves a buttload of medals." But I'm afraid medals won't save Leningrad...



Sectors: Yelets-Voronezh
Unlike Leningrad, the central sectors of Yelets-Voronezh are improving slightly. Of course, bringing such a force of four Guards armies to bear on the enemy will help your chances more often than not. Still, capturing three hexes, one on either side of Yelets and one near Voronezh, will keep the Germans on their toes here. My hope is that I can destabilize the German lines enough to force troops to be siphoned off from other parts of the front. And if I can bag a few Nazi divisions in the process, fantastic.



AFRICA

Sector: El Alamein
The DAK and Italians are sort of falling into my trap, advancing close to the coast, with the bulk of their armor hugging the main rail line. The next two weeks will be critical to the outcome in this theatre.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 26
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T020: 09.18.42 - 6/19/2012 1:06:53 AM   
mike1984

 

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T020 09.18.42

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
With no chance of reinforcement, it looks like Leningrad's days are numbered. The city doesn't have the strategic significance of others, except that it will allow more freedom for the Fins to operate in an expanded area. I will need to order more troops to the Karelian region, as I now expect a much stronger push coming from the Finland border. Still, Leningrad should be able to hold out for another month. I'm pulling troops back from the front line southwest of the city limits. This should at least give me a better opportunity to rotate units in and out of the battle line. And the concentration of manpower should help keep the Germans at bay for a little while longer.



ELSEWHERE

Nothing else worth reporting.

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 27
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T021: 09.25.42 - 6/20/2012 5:42:28 AM   
mike1984

 

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T021 09.25.42
*Don't mind the reorganization markings. The screenshots are from the beginning of ensuing turn following this AAR entry. So the shot here is of the start of Turn 22. The reorg markings are due to a 50% shock level in T022 from the mud season.*

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
Just one hex pickup for the Germans this turn. The units left on the front line to stall the enemy have done surprisingly well. Other than that, the assault has slowed significantly, as one would expect at this stage of the siege.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 28
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T021: 09.25.42 - 6/23/2012 2:48:53 PM   
mike1984

 

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T021 09.25.42
*Don't mind the reorganization markings. The screenshots are from the beginning of ensuing turn following this AAR entry. So the shot here is of the start of Turn 22. The reorg markings are due to a 50% shock level in T022 from the mud season.*

RUSSIA

Sector: Leningrad
Just one hex pickup for the Germans this turn. The units left on the front line to stall the enemy have done surprisingly well. Other than that, the assault has slowed significantly, as one would expect at this stage of the siege.


(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 29
TR 42-45 1.5.2 - ALLIED vs Mark - T022-024: 10.02.42-10... - 6/23/2012 2:49:45 PM   
mike1984

 

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T022-024 10.02.42 - 10.16.42
*Triple Turn due to mud season bogging everything down*

RUSSIA

Theatre Update
The mud season has begun, grinding everything to a halt. And I couldn't be happier! Mark used some of his offensive operational disbands, including the all-valuable shock disband. But he was caught with his hand in the cookie jar on this one. So the 50% shock for both sides will negate any significant advantage the Axis side would have with the disbands.

Not much action in terms of battle. But I've shifted some of the armies around. Most notably are the Guards armies that are now coming in more frequently. The 2nd Guards has been moved to the Karelian Region at the Finland border. The 10th Guards has been moved from the Rzhev sector down to the Yelets-Voronezh sectors. And the 5th Guards is now at Stalingrad. More movements include reinforcements beginning to stage for transport to Murmansk. And a the 60th Army sailing down from Astrakhan to the Grozny area.

As the mud season draws to a close, the bulk of the Guards armies near the Yelets-Voronezh are preparing to move south to the Astrakhan and Grozny areas for what is expected to be a mammoth fight for the oil fields. One Guards army and one regular army will be sent north to the Karelian region, bolstering my presence there in case the Axis forces get full of themselves.

The situation down in the south looks to play out immediately following the end of the mud season, as the large Axis offensive force is staging at the end of T024.

AFRICA

Theatre Update
Like in Russia, the mud has slowed everything. But the DAK and Italians are still vulnerable. This situation in Egypt is so tempting, that I might use some offensive operational disbands and launch my counter offensive as soon as the mud eases up. With such a strong defensive position to work from, and plenty of rest and supply for my British Commonwealth force, I wouldn't have much to lose. The only drawback would be that I should wait until the Torch invasion force is ready to go. But I've had trouble with that operation before where I had to wait longer than the historical invasion date.

Decisions, decisions...

(in reply to mike1984)
Post #: 30
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