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RE: Never Fear, Paul von Hindenburg is here

 
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RE: Never Fear, Paul von Hindenburg is here - 12/21/2012 7:16:40 PM   
ulver

 

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It may be the deep of winter but that doesn’t slow down team Hindenburg, who launches a counteroffensive with dazzling speed often catching the Serbians in the open with murderous artillery barrage. Again and again Serbian positions are overrun with whole armies surrounded and left to starve to death in the freezing cold.



January 15th 1915. Under Hindenburg’s leadership the combined German-Austrian strike force relentlessly presses home its attack. Liberating Temeschurg and isolating yet another army.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/21/2012 7:19:47 PM >

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A murder avenged - 12/21/2012 7:50:01 PM   
ulver

 

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A murder avenged.

By the end of January Belgrade fall to the advancing Germans with shocking ease. Serbian forces are not so much pushed back as obliterated. Facing the German elite storm troops the battle weary men of Serbia are like glass before a hammer.
The Austrian airship corps proves surprisingly useful, both as reconnaissance and as a tool for strategic bombardment dramatically reducing the meager Serbian war economy to the point where it is quite unable to replenish the horrific casualties.



February 18th 1915. Serbia being rapidly overrun.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 12:38:35 PM >

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The End of Serbia. - 12/21/2012 8:59:59 PM   
ulver

 

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The End of Serbia.

After that the rest is basically a mobbing up operation. Occasionally a bid of a chore but the outcome is foreordained.

If I were to pass judgment on the Serbian war effort I would have to say they operation “smoke and mirrors” was a smashing success. Serbia didn’t launch her offensive until the battle for France was basically over and the first German troops bound for the Balkans were being entrained. Being caught in the open as opposed to defending fortified positions just made by job of destroying the Serbians so much easier. In retro respect the Serbians should either have attacked at once or not at all but then it is always easy to make these judgments with 20-20 hindsight.

It takes until early June to finish pacifying the last pockets of resistance but by then Hindenburg and his elite forces has been redeployed. Other challenges await the conquer of Serbia…..



June 10th 1915. The mobbing up operation is finally complete. Time for some well deserved R&R for Hindenburg and his troops. The Austrian-Italian border is a nice quiet province far away from the fighting.......

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/22/2012 11:29:50 PM >

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A nice Italian vacation - 12/22/2012 2:58:39 PM   
ulver

 

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Operation Pizza Express

Late June see Italy stab her former allies in the back as she sells herself to the highest bidder like a common street harlot. To make matters worse there is only one Austrian Army guardian the Italian frontier. Is this a pivotal moment that will see all my hopes of victory undone?


The stab in the back

Not really. The attack doesn’t really come as much of a surprise and while there may not be any Austrians to defend the border Hindenburg’s boys comprising 6 regular front line armies out of the 10 Germany can field along with every piece of artillery the Central Powers can scrape together among them stands ready to launch operation Pizza Express


These boots are goanna walk all over you

About 30 seconds after Italy delivers her declaration of war German and Austrian heavy artillery opens up causing panic and disruption followed by the weight of six German armies baring down on the ill-prepared Italians.



June 24th 1915. After obliterating the northern section of the front a German Army storms into an undefended Milan.


The image above nicely illustrates a few points about my strategy I want to discuss. Notice the prevalence of armored trains holding the Western Front. Oddly enough I find they give superb economy of force for static defense if a rail line happens to be conveniently located. The reason is their extreme low cost in manpower and especially maintenance. An armored train actually has better defense then a garrison corps until well into 1916 it with half the maintenance cost. Sure they are a bit more expensive to build but well worth it.

Secondly, the central power player has the critical advantage of knowing the precise Italian set up, allowing for the formulation of the “prefect plan” to deal with Italy if the opportunity presents itself. In every game as the Entente I have been absolutely paranoid about danger of a German first strike against Italy and always bought Rail capacity for France as well as pre-positioning forces in southern France for quick redeployment into Italy once she joins. I have been surprised every time that no offensive against Italy has materialized. In this case I was incredible lucky in that I just had finished Serbia off allowing me to simply redeploy the Serbian task force to deal with Italy.
For the poor Italians it is shaping up to be the perfect storm.


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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 12:39:07 PM >

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The Pizza express gathers steam. - 12/22/2012 9:28:14 PM   
ulver

 

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In one month of heavy, if rather on-sided, fighting the Italian army isn’t so much pushed back as obliterated. By the end of July intelligence indicate that it has effectively ceased to exist as an effective fighting force. This unprecedented success prompts a dramatic change of overall strategy. The initial goal of the Italian operation was merely to establish a short front line anchored on Venice in the South and the Alps in the north and dig in allowing me to concentrate combat power against the Russians. My vague plan was to combine a German land offensive with a navel operation and an advance against st Petersburg

This was based on the assumption that, having failed to capture Paris in 1914, Russia is the weakest link in the Entente. The unexpected progress and lack of firm resistance in Italy prompts a complete revision of grand strategy. What if Italy is beatable? Instead of looking to shorten the front in the West suppose I look for ways to lengthen it? Knocking Italy out might open the glittering opportunity of a southern front against the French they will scarcely have the troops to cover. Alternatively I might compel the Italians to an armistice that leaves the Turin region Italian and neutral – thus freeing up forces for an unstoppable push towards the East. Either way it would mean the road to victory goes by way of an Italian tour.

One question is asked again and again in Italy: What are our allies doing?



July 22th 1915. Italians are simply being overwhelmed. Massed artillery and navel gunfire paves the way for a lightning advance.


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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 12:39:28 PM >

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Entente Response - 12/22/2012 10:25:57 PM   
ulver

 

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As it happens their allies are doing their best but the speed of the German advance across Northern Italy cuts vital rail links cutting off Florence and Rome from reinforcements except by sea and that takes time to organize. They do launch brutal Verdun-style relive offensive obliterating serveal defending dug-in armies and pushing the German line back in disarray.



October 14th 1915. An example of the kind of brutal offensive the Entente applies in northern France. Inexorably pushing me back, crushing whole armies and overrunning artillery.

At the same time the Russians launches repeated frontal assault attempting to force me to break off my offensive. Headless of their own casualties, counting on a near limitless pool of manpower they launches human wave attacks pressing their offensives home at any cost.


August 19th 1915. Russian pincers closing around Lemberg

The massive bloodletting combined with the British naval blockade is beginning to have an effect.


October 14th 1914. Austria is the first of the Iron Thrones beginning to crack under the strain.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 12:39:49 PM >

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The Rock - 12/23/2012 12:50:55 PM   
ulver

 

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The Rock

Meanwhile in other news a German invasion manage to clear the central Mediterranean before Italy joined the war and storms ashore in an undefended Gibraltar. A lot of conveys pass close by and I plan to convert it into a sub refitting and upgrade center. Might also make a decent defended base for Austrian cruisers to raid passing convoys.

Note to designer: We should consider some sort of very cheap static garrison for locations such as this. A UK player either has to pay a fortune in upkeep to defend his island harbors or risk the Central Powers sizing them for U-boat bases. Seems a bit odd that garrisoning Malta, Gibraltar and Scapa Flow should cost the Entente player 6 BP pr turn in upkeep
.



July 8th 1915. A German force prepares to seize a very nice raiding port.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 12:57:50 PM >

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Italian agony - 12/23/2012 1:58:55 PM   
ulver

 

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Italian agony

Hindenburg opens the yearly war planning conference with one word: Rome It has now been two months of unrelenting disasters for the Italians and the front shows no sign of stabilizing as the relentless German forces pushes both West and south. The fall of Italy now seems a foregone conclusion as Hindenburg’s troops approach the outskirts of the Italian capital.



August 19th 1915. Florence has been captured – can Rome be far behind? Airship recon reveals it is only defended by a garrison.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 3:36:39 PM >

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RE: Italian agony - 12/23/2012 3:24:20 PM   
ulver

 

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Is not quite as easy as that. Italian garrisons in central Italy puts up a surprisingly good fight despite the hopeless odds. Meanwhile ground is gradually gained in the West as well with the Italians declaring Genoa an open city and withdrawing from it without firing a shot.



September 30th 1915. Italy’s last stand?

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 3:51:23 PM >

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RE: Italian agony - 12/23/2012 3:44:49 PM   
ulver

 

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Despite at times heroic resistance the endgame is inevitable as the eternal city surrenders after a month long siege. The city has survived many conquers and it will likely outlast Hindenburg.



October 28th 1915. Looking forward to dictating peace terms to the traitorous Italians.

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< Message edited by ulver -- 12/23/2012 3:46:53 PM >

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