From: Rensselaer, Indiana, USA
I played the scenerio, starting by using dlazov66's "Operational Boot Camp" (which is pretty helpful, if you're just getting into the game). As I approached Leningrad, it became clear that there were only two routes open to use for my panzers. First, was the lightly wooded/clear terrain to the west of Leningrad. However, this would have forced me to batter my head against several very well defended hexes in order to get to Leningrad proper. The second route was off to the east of Novagrad and south of Lake Ilmen, along the railroad towards the eastern edge of Lake Ladoga. It is also light woods/clear, but is closely bordered by swamps on both sides, with the Syas River to the east. (As someone noted earlier, panzers and swamps don't mix.) The advantage of this route was the fact that I could avoid beating my head against Leningrad's main defences, but in the end, cutting off all supplies to the city by capturing the ports on the lake. Since this route became my main thrust, I used 18th Army to screen the main Leningrad defenses (making advances if at low cost), while using much of 16th Army to support the advance of 4th Panzer Group. I was always conscious of the Soviet attempts at coming through the swamps to try and trap my spearhead. As it approached the far eastern port on the Lake, the Soviets sent a wave of defenders to block my path. I was successful at reaching and capturing the port of Sviritsa, connecting with the Finns at Lodeynoe Pole, and cutting off Leningrad. The next turn, the Soviets tried to supply Leningrad by air - amazing! While I knew that was futile, it was interesting to see the AI try. Within two turns, Leningrad's defenders began surrendering in mass. The whole pocket was cleaned up by turn 16. As I was reducing the pocketed area, the Soviets on the outside made a very aggresive attempt at breaking through in relief. This was mainly in the areas to the east of Nebolochi and Tikhvin. However, they lacked the offensive punch to make it work. It was a Major German Victory.
< Message edited by kmussler -- 1/7/2011 5:03:24 PM >