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Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 8:24:20 AM   
Tarhunnas


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During my current GC as the Soviets, I deliberately railed some cavalry into the Pripet Marshes to use their mobility to raid Axis supply lines. This worked rather well, and I think it was well worth the investment (and eventual eradication of some of these units).

Now I am thinking, is the mobility of cavalry in swamps really realistic? It doesn't feel right that cavalry has far better mobility in swamps than infantry.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 8:44:48 AM   
76mm


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tarhunnas
Now I am thinking, is the mobility of cavalry in swamps really realistic? It doesn't feel right that cavalry has far better mobility in swamps than infantry.


Not sure about this; I don't think that swamp hexes are meant to represent an unbroken ten-mile-wide morass, but rather terrain where there is a fair bit of swampy ground which limits mobility. The fact that vehicles can enter swamp hexes at all would seem to indicate that there is in fact enough dry ground, etc. to maneuver to some extent, which cav units would be able to take advantage of.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 9:02:23 AM   
Tarhunnas


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Yes, I agree on that, surely a swamp hex doesn't represent 16 kilometers of knee deep water, but just like motorized units, cavalry would be confined largely to roads, which there should be few of, and that would inhibit mobility.

And cavalry requires a lot of supply, much more than infantry, which would be hard to bring forward. In addition, but I am not sure this would have an impact on an operational level, but I have done some riding, and I have understood that horses do not fare well from being on damp ground a lot, they get inflamed something whateveritscalledinenglish on their hooves.


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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 9:16:08 AM   
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tarhunnas

Yes, I agree on that, surely a swamp hex doesn't represent 16 kilometers of knee deep water, but just like motorized units, cavalry would be confined largely to roads, which there should be few of, and that would inhibit mobility.


well, I am far from a cavalry expert, and most of my knowledge about horses comes from watching Western movies, but I would think that cav would have decent mobility in these swamp hexes--they could cross fields and streams that vehicles could not, and I would think that at least in some cases it would be easier for cav to cross streams, etc. than infantry. Obviously they would struggle in deep mud, etc., but who knows what proportion of these swamp hexes is meant to represent true swamps?

As to supply, presumably it would be difficult for any units be get supply in these hexes, I'm not sure if it would be harder for cav than other units.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 1:04:57 PM   
Tarhunnas


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A cavalry divison is not just men on horses, it's lots of wagons, trucks, artillery, armored cars and tanks. In some of the TOEs (including the original 41 one that they had at the time I describe) they have up to 60 tanks!.


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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 1:12:22 PM   
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how many swamp hexes can a CavDiv move through in one turn? Is it more or less than a mech unit?

In my current game I've had some airbases slogging through the Pripyat (didn't want to waste the rail cap!); I can hardly imagine a less mobile unit, I'm guessing that there is simply a fair bit of abstraction going on.

I should try to get to this area this summer and check it out, I've never been and would like to see the famous "marshes" first-hand.


< Message edited by 76mm -- 5/14/2012 1:13:27 PM >

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 1:32:32 PM   
Tarhunnas


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quote:

ORIGINAL: 76mm

how many swamp hexes can a CavDiv move through in one turn? Is it more or less than a mech unit?


Way more! Cav pay inf movement costs, but typically have more MPs, while mechanised units move at a snails pace. Just try to rail some cav divs into the marshes on the first soviet turn and you'll see! Compared to the any mech divisions caught in the swamps, they literally fly through the swamps. And their ability to move through zocs make them a royal pain in the butt for the German! This is a great tactic, they can make sallies out of the marshes and displace airbases, HQs and mess up railway conversion and generally mess up German plans... This is all ok, if the German has sloppy flank security, he should pay. It is just that I think the cav is a little too good to be true at swamp warfare.


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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 1:34:21 PM   
jaw

 

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Neither is it realistic for the Axis player to bypass the swamp or screen it with only an overstretched token force. I sweep the Pripyat Marshes with infantry divisions in every other hex and destroy anything the Soviet player leaves behind.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 1:38:06 PM   
Tarhunnas


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jaw

Neither is it realistic for the Axis player to bypass the swamp or screen it with only an overstretched token force. I sweep the Pripyat Marshes with infantry divisions in every other hex and destroy anything the Soviet player leaves behind.


Agree completely, and that is what I do too when I play the Axis.

It is not really the situation I have anything against, it is the effect in the game that swamps are the preferred country for cavalry that I think is a little odd. Not only do they move like lightning, the swamps make them much safer from counterattacks, which is a big advantage as they are rather brittle.

< Message edited by Tarhunnas -- 5/14/2012 1:39:10 PM >


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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/14/2012 3:33:56 PM   
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I know from other games that cav do have fairly good movement in swamps. I also know the Germans used their one cav division quite a bit in swamp operations along with I think some sort of cav unit around AGC during what they called the "snail offensive" where the ground was pretty swampy. You would think if cav was no good in the swap, the Germans would likely refrain from using it, but that does not appear to be the case.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/15/2012 9:15:21 AM   
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Main difference is that if you blow a big hole in one of the roads through the Pripet Marshes (at the time) and an armoured vehicle is going to bog down trying to avoid it. Whereas Mr.Ed just skirts round it and continues on. Numerous wooden bridges of limited capacity would make for hellishly slow going for armoured vehicles, but would present no problem to a horse mounted unit. Throw in the capricious nature of flooding and rains and it's not somewhere to take anything liable to getting bogged down.

Given that it's not all knee deep mud, nor all heavy woodland, it doesn't seem unreasonable that they would on average move faster than an infantry unit too.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/15/2012 3:41:44 PM   
Tarhunnas


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@Zebededee But see above, I just described the unit, there are 60 tanks and whatnot in the average Soviet Cav Div that are extremely liable to bog down!


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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/28/2012 2:04:34 AM   
Zebedee


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Would suggest that a 12 tonne tank is a lot less likely to get bogged down than a 24 tonne (and more) tank, as well as having less need for someone to strengthen the bridges in the area. If you assume a certain amount of abstraction (attached artillery etc), then I'd not be miffed if a German cavalry division with Panzer IIs attached moved at the same speed. A German cavalry division with King Tigers, or a Soviet cavalry division with JSs, would be a different kettle of fish.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/28/2012 5:14:31 PM   
rbm1954

 

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Wikipedia has some insight.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinsk_Marshes. I'm in the Germans have to devote a few divisions to clear the marshes camp.

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RE: Cavalry in swamps - Seahorses? - 5/30/2012 12:31:33 AM   
Farfarer61

 

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Weight to surface area of track is the key, or psi/kg/cm2. You learn this when you make a stupid decision and habve to starfish-wriggle off a 'frozen' lake rather than walk in a tenth of the time...

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