RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (Full Version)

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CaptBeefheart -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/24/2019 8:05:38 AM)

TB: Thanks for the summary. One aspect of the game I found challenging is supply, especially in France and Belgium. How is that coming along? Could you show us a screenshot with active rail lines and depots?


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/25/2019 4:18:21 AM)

As I mentioned earlier, I had my troubles with repairing rails early in Sicily and Italy, but finally figured out the rail repair units. Depot building has been a little confusing because sometimes I'll look at the details of a location that should be able to house a depot, but I can't build there. I think it comes down to two things: I just can't build a depot in a hex on the turn you capture it and I can't build a depot on a hex where the rail line is damaged? You can see my rail net in France. I have a main line extending out and have started to a string of depots. The 1st CA Army HQ (with 4 supply priority) is sitting on the priority 4 depot has all of the Corps HQs in the eastern facing front attached to it. I'm building another line from Brittany that I will connect to the main net and create a secondary spur that goes further south.

The supply organization method seems pretty simple. Have supply flowing into a port (the bigger, the better), extend the rail line from that port to the front, build depots as close to the front as possible, and set priorities high for both the depots and HQs you want to receive supply.


CaptBeefheart -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 12:59:47 AM)

Thanks for that. Looks like a cleared RR route to Brest would be in order.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 2:00:06 AM)

Turn 53:
The cleared railroad route from Brest is coming soon enough as the Germans in the way are being reduced. The turn starts out good. That pesky 9th SS Panzer division finally surrendered at Granville. I can now rush that corps east to bolster my front lines.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 4:10:25 AM)

On the main front, I punch a small hole in the line. I need more troops to make more sustained progress. I have too much in the rear areas right now and have lost critical mass.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 4:18:59 AM)

In Southern France, it feels like the Twilight Zone. First letís start with the forces advancing up the Rhone River valley. Over the past three weeks, theyíve travelled from the French Riviera all the way to within sight of the Belfort Gap without encountering any Germans at all. Theyíre only 100 km/60 miles from Germany. There is still a war going on, isnít there? Maybe West Wall is a myth too and there is nothing standing between us and Berlin.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:12:49 AM)

And as the mainly Free French forces continue to inch their way their way over the Maritime Alps, we are blocked by a lowly security regiment and a mountain regiment? Where the heck are the German forces? Meanwhile twenty odd divisions are laagering in Central Italy getting drunk on stolen Italian wine. Canít somebody get on the phone with General Kesselring and tell Uncle Albert that heís got a crisis developing in the Po Valley. If I walk into Turin unopposed, Iím going to have my air force drop postcards from the city with a message of ďEnjoying my vacation in Turin. Wish you were here.Ē


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:24:51 AM)

Turn 54:
Vanguard units from the South reach the outskirts of Nancy and finally make contact with a German unit. There is a war on after all. Iím being cautious with this force because supply is still lagging way behind and they can be outflanked easily. Iím content to just be a threat to the German southern flank.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:27:29 AM)

Iím able to surround a panzer and infantry division near Amiens in France and with a new corp on the line, Iím positioned for a bigger breakout next turn as the German line is looking really brittle. My troops from the south have forced the Germans to stretch their line quite a bit.

In the rear areas, St. Malo finally falls, which allows me to rush another corp to the front lines. The rail line from Brest is linked up with the other line going east.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:31:26 AM)

In the South, Iím out of the mountains into the hills. I can see the plains of the Po Valley stretched out below. Marseilles is still being reduced. Iíve made a change of plans. After I capture Marseilles, Iím going to send one corps north and one corps into the Po Valley to capitalize on the opportunity there.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:40:32 AM)

Turn 55:
The Germans in Marseilles finally surrender. The flood into the Po Valley looks imminent. Iíve probably been too methodical here, but I donít really have a good supply situation. Over the last several turns I shipped a rail repair unit from Central Italy so that I can repair a rail line to the valley.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:53:56 AM)

In the Belfort area, infantry arrives and I move adjacent to the Rhein River. My artillery can now fire into Germany. I make sure to secure a lodgement on the eastern side of the Moselle River.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 5:59:22 AM)

But the big news is in NE France where a blow a 20 mile wide gap in the German line and Allied armor motors deep into the German rear areas, taking Arras and threatening to surround the entire north side of the German front. The Germans really have no reserves; there are just HQ units behind the main front line.


John B. -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/27/2019 4:18:03 PM)

You have to ask yourself. If you could choose between drinking looted wine in central Italy or fighting a losing war high up in the Alps, which would you choose? :)

TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/28/2019 4:48:01 AM)

Turn 56:
Allied troops march into Turin unopposed, next stop Milan. German forces around Imperia on the south coast are surrounded. No fighting at all this turn in the south; this is all just maneuver.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/28/2019 5:42:56 AM)

In France, the Germans pulled back to a line running from the Belgium border SE to Lorraine. I take Dieppe and generally just advance east into open space.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:27:57 PM)

Turn 57:
In France, I attempt to attack the line in the north on the run. My infantry moved up and attacked the line, but the Germans had several mobile divisions in reserve so it was not a quick breakthrough. I was only able to clear and occupy two hexes east near Brussels. Iím not helped by some rain and mud which the forecast predicts will persist next week as well.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:31:48 PM)

In Northern Italy, German reinforcements are spotted in the Po Valley so I pull back into a more defensible perimeter until I can bring up the main body of my forces who have surrounded a pocket of Germans around the port of Imperia, which I take to isolate them.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:35:54 PM)

The Germans also shift their defensive line in Southern Italy. So I advance into the mountains around Cassino and surround an elite Airborne division in parked in a port on the Adriatic coast.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:41:54 PM)

Turn 58:
I push in Belgium again trying to make a breakout, but am only able to advance two hexes again and canít make a deeper breakthrough. Iím struggling with what to do with all those ports on the north coast which I want to clear, but are dispersing my strength. The Germans are dropping one or more infantry division in every port. I can easily reduce one a turn which I have done up to this point (with Le Harve being the only exception), but thatís at the cost of the main focus of my advance. At the same time, they are racking up city points which has my city VP rising every turn and they have the added benefit of providing supply points very close to the front . Iím not sure if Iíve made the right balance of forces in dealing with them; the cost/benefit isnít totally clear.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:47:47 PM)

Further south, I begin a push in the northeasterly direction towards Metz, but am only able to take one hex near Verdun. Again, I donít have enough movement points for a full breakout. The light mud isnít helping matters. These late July rains are hampering my progress and I feel like Iíve lost a lot of momentum.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:52:44 PM)

In Northern Italy, the Imperia pocket is almost reduced. Once thatís clear next turn, I will resume my general advance in the Po Valley and continue to push eastwards. There has been a force of Germans still hanging out in the Alps and I deploy forces to screen them away for Turin. Their rail line is now cut so hopefully they will exfiltrate out of the mountains on their own in a few turns.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (6/29/2019 11:54:30 PM)

In Central Italy, I am able to force a surrender of the 3rd Fsjr division on the Adriatic coast. There is another Fsjr regiment in another port on the west coast, but my forces bypass it and push up the Liri Valley towards Rome.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 7:40:11 PM)

Turn 59:
Iíve been reorganizing sectors on the fly and have been methodically reorganizing my front lin. For sectors that Iím not actively trying to push forward, I have the front covered by regiments and brigades from broken down divisions with a full division in reserve behind the front line. This equates to 4 divisions per corp, which maxes out the 11 admin points per corps HQ unit. This has allowed me to concentrate more forces on my two main axisí of attack in northern Europe, which roughly matches the historical advance paths: one through Belgium with an aim to cross the Rhine north of the Ruhr and the second in the Metz area aimed northeast toward the Saar region of Germany.

Generally, the AI has been inert and hasnít been attacking, but has attacked in a few places and Iíve been able to hole wherever he attacks.

In Belgium and northern France, I am able to make a deeper break through south of Brussels. Also, Iím able to clear the port of Dunkirk.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 7:44:23 PM)

In the southern sector of France, I create a break through east of Nancy and push north adjacent to Metz. Another small hole in the line in created south of Verdun.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 7:49:14 PM)

In northern Italy, I force a surrender of the troops surrounded near Imperia on the coast. The rail line has been repaired up to Turin and with the corps on the coast now freed up, Iím ready for a big push east for the next two turns.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 7:52:55 PM)

In central Italy, I march into Rome and march through the mountains. I suspect the German blocking troops will be fully pulling back to northern Italy soon.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 8:01:04 PM)

Turn 60:
As a result of my recent gains, Iíve reached a tipping point for victory points. Part of this is just that Iíve been accumulating a lot of city points such as my recent capture of Rome and my ever accumulation of ports on Franceís western coast (which I have a corps methodically port busting to capture them all). Another aspect is that Iíve been overrunning V-weapon launch sites. Regardless, the turn-by-turn VP situation is looking pretty good with still four months left until the VP divisors change.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 8:07:49 PM)

Hereís German defenses at the start of the turn. The Germans have defended the bulge south of Brussels, but have a few regiments being annoyingly blocking full access to the bulge. In the south, two divisions are ripe for encirclement at Nancy.


TankBushido -> RE: Operation Sledgehammer í43 (7/6/2019 8:14:30 PM)

I expand the bulge and get a bridgehead across one of the rivers, but still need to get across the Albert Canal. This advance is looking very much like Market Garden, only without the airborne drops. I starting to shift more infantry into the bulge, so I think Iíll be able to break out next turn.


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