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Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/3/2012 11:24:22 AM   
horza66

 

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At present we have a system for creating Mechanized Corps, the Soviet Army's strongest unit, where you must first build mechanized brigades and form them into Corps. Due to the poor quality of troops formed in this way the resulting Corps is not really useable for some time. More importantly, this is does not reflect the historical reality of their evolution from Tank Corps.

Mechanised Corps formation:

Mechanized Corps
1st - from 27th Tank Corps, September 42
2nd - formed September 42; became 7th Guards Mechanized Corps, July 43
3rd - from 8th Tank Corps, September 42; became 8th Guards Mechanized Corps, October 43
4th - from 28th Tank Corps, September 42; became 3rd Guards Mechanized Corps, December 42
5th - from 22nd Tank Corps, September 42; became 9th Guards Mechanized Corps, September 44
6th - from 14th Tank Corps, November 42; became 5th Guards Mechanized Corps, January 43
7th - formed January 1943 (was slow to form not being fully formed until September 1943)
8th - formed February 1943 (also slow to form, not fully formed until October 1943)
9th - formed January 43, but didn't become fuly formed until September 1943
10th - formed December 1944 in the Far Eastern Theater. Wasn't fully formed until June 1945
(13th) – actually the reorganized 13th Tank Corps November 42, became 4th Guards Mechanized Corps, January 43

Though the 2nd and 7th-10th MCs appear to have been formed as fresh formations, it should be valid to convert an existing TC to an MC. A reduction in experience levels would be reasonable to reflect the costs of reorganising.

The creation of Guards Mechanised Corps provides another mechanism for creation of Mech Corps:

Guards Mechanized Corps
1st Guards - from 1st Guards Rifle Division, November 42
2nd Guards - from 22nd Guards Rifle Division, October 42
3rd Guards - from 4th Mechanized Corps, December 42
4th Guards - from 13th Mechanized Corps, January 43
5th Guards - from 6th Mechanized Corps, January 43
6th Guards - from 3rd Guards Motorized Rifle Division and 49th MechanizedBrigade, June 43
7th Guards - from 2nd Mechanized Corps, July 43
8th Guards - from 3rd Mechanized Corps, October 43
9th Guards - from 5th Mechanized Corps, September 44

Promotion from an existing MC was common but exceptionally an existing Guards rifle division could provide the founding unit for mechanisation.

Game Balance: there may be a concern that easier routes to Mechanized Corps formation would lead to masses of Soviet MCs dominating the battlefield in '43. However this is already prevented by the primary restraint on mechanized warfare for the Soviets : their lack of trucks. In fact it is difficult to replicate the historical Soviet OOB of ~15 Mech and 29 Tank Corps without crippling the supply situation.

(Source - a Dupuy institute discussion that pulls together information from sources such as Erickson, Sharp, Glantz and Zetterling)





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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/3/2012 11:50:12 AM   
amatteucci

 

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Seconded.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/3/2012 8:59:31 PM   
bigbaba


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good posting. i was a fan of this MC until flav pointed at their huge truck demand.

because of that i will go for rifle corps nd tank corps later as russian. when i survuve my actual 2 german opponents 41+42 rampage.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 12:53:54 PM   
horza66

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: bigbaba

good posting. i was a fan of this MC until flav pointed at their huge truck demand.

because of that i will go for rifle corps nd tank corps later as russian. when i survuve my actual 2 german opponents 41+42 rampage.


The trucks required make it pretty unikely that I would initially form any more than three or so MCs - maybe one per Tank Army by late '43.

The important thing for me is the inability of TCs to hold ground. Having an MC instead to act as the linchpin can make the difference between success and failure of a pocketing action. At present it's not possible to have reasonable quality MC or GMC available in December '42 , and that makes replicating an equivalent to Operation Uranus significantly ( and ahistorically) harder.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 1:04:22 PM   
Speedy

 

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Indeed. Tank Cps don't have staying power due to their lack of Infantry (compared to Rifle and Mech Cps). It's the infantry and high ROF Weapons that are the killers for Axis

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 6:42:38 PM   
gingerbread


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quote:

ORIGINAL: horza66

The trucks required make it pretty unikely that I would initially form any more than three or so MCs - maybe one per Tank Army by late '43.

The important thing for me is the inability of TCs to hold ground. Having an MC instead to act as the linchpin can make the difference between success and failure of a pocketing action. At present it's not possible to have reasonable quality MC or GMC available in December '42 , and that makes replicating an equivalent to Operation Uranus significantly ( and ahistorically) harder.


Well, the Axis players' reluctance to keep their heads in the noose can also to some extent explain your replication difficulties.



I'm not suggesting that there should be 'No Retreat'-rules.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 6:48:30 PM   
Schmart

 

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There are a lot of Russian OOB aspects in the game that are not historically modeled, as well as many aspects that are difficult to model in a wargame type environment. The deeper one digs into the historical Russian OOB, the more questions and difficulties arise, and the more of your own hair you will pull out trying to figure things out...

To model the historical Russian OOB, there's a lot of building, disbanding, and new building that has to happen. Given the limited APs, it's very costly.

It would be nice to fine-tune some of these aspects, and maybe that's something that'll come for WitE 2.0.

quote:

At present we have a system for creating Mechanized Corps, the Soviet Army's strongest unit, where you must first build mechanized brigades and form them into Corps. Due to the poor quality of troops formed in this way the resulting Corps is not really useable for some time.


You don't have to wait for Mech Bdes. You can start building Mot Bdes in Apr 42. 3 of these can form a Mech Corps starting Sep 42. I build 6-9 of them at that point, and use them with Tank Corps in counter-attack roles through the summer of 42, and by the time September roles around, you have a group of trained, experienced, and higher morale Mot Bdes to form your first Mech Corps. I've even been able to get one or two of the Mot Bdes to Guards status before Sep 42. For some reason, it seems easier to get Tank Corps to Guards than the Mot Bdes, but I think that has to do with a lower MP for the Bdes and so they can't get around to participate in as many attacks as the Tank Corps.

< Message edited by Schmart -- 9/4/2012 6:51:09 PM >

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 9:02:33 PM   
bigbaba


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the point to build TK asap is imho the fact that you need something with mobility to open pockets in 42. that's why i will build a dozen TK asap with my strongest tank brigades in spring 42.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 10:03:44 PM   
turtlefang

 

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I agree with Schmart - you need to build six to nine motorize bgs ASAP and start training them up. There is no point in waiting unit the mech bgs arrive - you have motorize bg training for nearly six months before the mech units can be built.

As far as getting them to guard status, I think it is that they are just weak and its hard to gain victories - especially in 42 summer.

Regarding tank corps. I try to build all mine in 42 so I shoot for 24 to 30 and get rid of all the tank bgs (which are useless in my opinion). Its about a net of 700 trucks for each tank corps - 1600 or so in total less the 900 the three tank bgs already have when combined. It puts a strain on the truck supply but your going to have admin point problems in 43 when you start converting infantry divisions to corps.

Walloc pointed out a couple of things in several post that you have to keep in mind:

1) In 42, its doubtful your truck situation will improve much if any. Its the big limitation on your army mechinization in 42 - as admin points will be in 43.
2) You have to save your vehicle factories. Each 1 pt save will result in roughtly 5000 to 7000 trucks over the course of the game. Its a good rule of thumb to keep in mind when your evacing factories. Or, to put it another way, on 6 pt factory that the German capture can produce enough trucks to support six or so mech corp by 44/45.
3) Just my observation - if you can keep all your vehicle factories, then by 44, your army should actually be more mobile than the German army - the Germans will actually become less mobile as the game progresses. Just something to keep in mind.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/4/2012 10:31:11 PM   
Schmart

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: turtlefang
As far as getting them to guard status, I think it is that they are just weak and its hard to gain victories - especially in 42 summer.


Theoritically, since I fill out my Tank Armies with Mot Bdes (x3 Tank Corps x3 Mot Bdes) and stack them together, the Mot Bdes should win as often, but MPs are lower so the Tank Corps can often squeeze in an extra win or two via exploitation. Mot Bdes are a one shot attack.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 9:23:07 AM   
horza66

 

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Schmart/Turtlefang: The Mot Bde build-up into MCs didn't actually work when I tried it in the early versions of the game - thanks for letting me know that that's been fixed.

However this is just a workaround. Surely WITE is aiming for historical accuracy? Where the Axis OOB is concerned fixes were provided to get Tiger battalion attachments correct - the building of Mech Corps is a far more significant detail.

The Mechanized Corps is the pinnacle of Soviet mobile development, representing their ability to absorb and apply the lessons so painfully learnt from the enemy's use of blitzkrieg. It would be sad indeed if you could only reach that pinnacle by an ahistorical workaround.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 1:06:33 PM   
balcazrvam

 

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But just to keep it from getting out of hand

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 4:09:01 PM   
turtlefang

 

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One of the issues with any non-historical provided OOB is that you really can't cover every possible instance of how units evolve and get created.

For example, on the the German side, the HG Division started as a body guard unit then a company, battalion, regiment - battlegroup - division - panzer division - super panzer division - then a corps. There is no real way to "create" this type of development in a non-historical OOB except by a special HG rule.

The same is true on the Soviet side. MC were formed by a wide variety of means by the Soviets - directly, conversion of tank corps, conversion/upgrading of guards infantry, and - in at least in one case - a group of units put together and then reconfigured into a mech corps over time.

A game - any game - that allows a non-historical OOB to be created to follow a logical and understood path that "most" units followed when formed. It doesn't have to allow all paths or all exception as long as the total number of units remains reasonable (and reasonable is in the eye of the designer).

WITE generally does this with tank corps and mech corps - the base building blocks in each unit is the BG - for tank units, it represented by 3 tank bgs; for mech units, three motorize or mech bgs. When the corps is formed, the "other" support units get added and the sum of the parts is greater as a whole.

The building of the MC works for me - potentially the only change I would like to see is the conversion of Gds Tank Corps into Gds Mech Corps. Of course, then I would have to build more non-Gds Tank Corp to replace them - which is exactly what the Soviets did.
But if I have to, I can live without it and find some poor It, Hun or Rum to beat up on until I reach Gd status with my MC.

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 6:49:01 PM   
M60A3TTS

 

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I have no problem with the way it is today.  As Schmart says, build the motor brigades early so they can exp up and merge at the appropriate time into corps.  They can train up in winter 42-43 and be a potent force come summer 43.

Remember that you also retain a lot of cavalry corps which are very powerful in their own right after the Feb 43 TO&E conversion.  The Soviets historically ditched most of theirs after a while. 

I am running in my current AAR in late 43 with farfarer using 14 mech corps and 20+ tank corps, and even though domestic truck production is low by most standards, US Lend Lease helps out immensely. 

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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 9:35:52 PM   
Flaviusx


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In principle I agree with these proposed changes, but as a practical matter truck shortages are such that mech corps tend to be delayed into 1943 anyways. Even if it was made easier to create mech corps by flipping over tank corps I for one would probably still not do this due to truck requirements. Every mech corps needs 3k trucks. That's enough transport to equip nearly two tank corps or a score of rifle divisions. A dozen mech corps will divert 36k trucks, at a time when the Red Army has around 150k trucks. This transport shortage severely limits options until 1943. You need something like 200k trucks minimum to field anything like a historical Red Army going into 1943, and the transport just isn't there until well into 1943 proper.


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RE: Soviet Mechanized Corps - 9/5/2012 10:38:50 PM   
Schmart

 

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Another thing that I sometimes do when first building up Mech Corps is to set the TOE to 50%. That way, on refit they'll start training up the cadre, fill out the unit a bit, but not use the full complement of equipment and trucks. A Mech Corps at 50% is a little weaker than a full strength Tank Corps, and so I will often use them in combat similarly to a Tank Corps for the winter of 42-43, and then fill them up to 100% in the spring of 43. Much in the same way as Mot Bdes will gain experience and morale over the summer of 42 to prep them for Mech Corps, my 50% Mech Corps are gaining experience and morale over the winter to prep them for full 100% commitment in the summer of 43. Or I can even pair up (stacking, not merging) two 50% Mech Corps over the winter to act as 'one'.

< Message edited by Schmart -- 9/5/2012 10:42:49 PM >

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