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RE: Turn 12: 4th September 1941 - 10th September 1941

 
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RE: Turn 12: 4th September 1941 - 10th September 1941 - 1/18/2014 11:24:07 AM   
timmyab

 

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In a sane world that attack would have zero chance of success and a high probability of causing mass casualties to the Soviets. The initial odds are 1:6.
I've said it often enough in the past but I don't think forts should be reducable below the one level. A one level fort should represent the natural advantage a defender has after they've become familiar with a defensive position for a while, dug foxholes and pre-sighted their weapons etc. These are things that no amount of sappers can change.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 121
RE: Turn 12: 4th September 1941 - 10th September 1941 - 1/19/2014 6:05:14 AM   
Gabriel B.

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SigUp

Right now the sector between Kaluga and Tula is worrisome. Half of 4th Army was badly mauled by a counterattack (the one you saw above was part of it). Two divisions were encircled and most of them are 5-6 CV ants. It will be no problem to relieve them, but the offensive there is pretty much over. Can't do much more than dig in for the blizzard. I fear Tula will hold out. Does it make any sense to construct some fort zones right now?



Maybe in the north if it relives some infantry .

4th army for me is the army that cracks Moskow defenses head on, it has 4 divisions
that you can get above 85+ fast ( 7, 17, 23, 78 sturm ), 4 around 80 (292,293, 252,258 )
and 4 around 77-78 after the battle of Byalostok Minsk is over .

After 7 turns (august) the divisions train up ,and even the weak ones pack 9 cv .

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 122
RE: Turn 12: 4th September 1941 - 10th September 1941 - 1/19/2014 9:57:11 AM   
Walloc

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SigUp

First of all, can somebody enlighten me why those units didn't benefit from the fort bonus on their base unadjusted CV?



I've seens this a number of times and always in clear and with fort 1 and no i cant give any explanation on it sorry Sigup.

Prolly wouldnt have matter in end result as u can remove fort in combat and its end CV aka modCV that counts for odds.
One of teh many "quirks" in the combat system. How many other games do remove the defender multipliers before doing odd.

Kind regards,

Rasmus

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 123
Turn 15: 25th September 1941 - 1st October 1941 - 1/19/2014 2:51:03 PM   
SigUp

 

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Turn 15: 25th September 1941 - 1st October 1941

Army Group North



On 25th September, after a preparatory artillery and Luftwaffe strike, 4th Panzer Group and elements of 9th Army began the offensive to evict the Soviets out of the Valdai Hill. The Soviet units were incapable of withstanding the German assault and by noon of the next day a lane separating the divisions near the Volga and Torzhok had been created. Von Manstein's LVI. AK (mot.) stormed through the gap and on the 29th September Torzhok fell to a massed assault by the entire corps. Reinhardt's XXXXI. AK (mot.) advanced northwest behind the cover provided by LVI. AK (mot.) and on 30th September forward elements of 6th Panzer Division reached the Shlina. While the offensive was underway Stalin on 28th September, not wanting to risk yet another encirclement, gave Northwest and Northern Front permission to withdraw. Three days later both fronts completely emptied the Valdai region and thus Army Group North completed its objective in a single week.

Around the same time 4th Panzer Group's third motorized corps moved towards Kalinin, which was held by two rifle divisions. On the evening of the 27th 2nd and 5th Panzer Division reached the outskirts of the city and by the next morning began to systematically attack the Soviet 334th and 344th Rifle Division. Supported by heavy Luftwaffe bombardments the city fell two days later, securing Army Group Centre's northern flank.

Army Group Centre



While Army Group North's divisions drove deep into enemy territory, Army Group Centre's divisions north of Tula were engaged in a bitter and bloody struggle. Spearheaded by the elite I. and XX. AK the Germans broke down the Soviet lines in front of Moscow inch by inch, constantly under threat by opportunistic Soviet counterattacks. On 27th September 19th Panzer Division at the Moskva-Volga Canal was subject of an assault led by 55th Army. Unable to withstand the pressure the division had retreat west on 1st October, losing 40 tanks in the process. [Note 1] Three days later 58th and 32nd Infantry Division were driven out of their only recently conquered positions. [Note 2]

The real hammer, however, fell against 4th Army's IX. and LIII. AK between Oka and Tula. On 26th September three divisions of the Soviet 13th and 3rd Armies made it over the Oka and attacked 292nd Infantry Division dug in 10 miles behind the river. Surprised by this development the division was forced to retreat on the 29th. [Note 3] Similarly 167th and 112th Infantry Division were overwhelmed by troops of the Soviet 10th Army and had to give up their positions on 1st October. With that 137th and 263rd Infantry Division were cut off between Oka and Ula.

South of Orel, however, things looked better for Army Group Centre. After 2nd Army's infantry broke through the Soviet lines on 27th September, Guderian's panzers drove into the rear of Bryansk Front's troops standing at Kursk. Three days later the trap closed, when XXXXVI. AK (mot.) of 1st Panzer Group completed its swing north and made contact with Army Group Centre's divisions. Once again 12 Soviet divisions were encircled, robbing the Red Army of its only potent defensive force between Livny and Valuyki.

Army Group South



Aside from 6th Army and 1st Panzer Group's northern swing to close the Kursk pocket, the fighting was very limited in Army Group South's sector. The Crimea was hit by heavy rainfalls, while 11th Army was in the process of preparing an assault into Rostov. In the last September days German reconnaissance further reported Soviet disengagement from the Oskol east, behind the Krasnaya.

[Note 1: Initial CV 238 - 97. Modified CV 164 - 259]

[Note 2: Initial CV 109 - 130 and 82 - 89. Modified CV 54 - 330 and 32 - 206. The Red Army doesn't really need the +1 rule to successfully counterattack. I can live with those results, although the CV cuts for my divisions are tough to watch.]

[Note 3: Initial CV 133 - 71. Modified CV 82 - 127.]

(in reply to Walloc)
Post #: 124
RE: Turn 15: 25th September 1941 - 1st October 1941 - 1/19/2014 5:47:19 PM   
swkuh

 

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Appreciate yours & Loki's AAR commentaries, very instructive & well presented. Believe you've experimented with the "balance" factors before this game, so what settings for this game and why?

Myself, playing AI as Axis, set 110, 90, 90, 90... Sov all 100's. Some time in '43 think I'd penalize the Soviets a bit.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 125
RE: Turn 15: 25th September 1941 - 1st October 1941 - 1/20/2014 7:47:29 AM   
Gabriel B.

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: rrbill

Myself, playing AI as Axis, set 110, 90, 90, 90... Sov all 100's. Some time in '43 think I'd penalize the Soviets a bit.


the 110 morale is huge , nothing can compensate for that ... the axis end up with a monster army in turn 1 .




Attachment (1)

(in reply to swkuh)
Post #: 126
Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 9:25:00 AM   
SigUp

 

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Monthly Report: September 1941


Frontline 1st October 1941

Losses

The bloody battles around Moscow in September 1941 further increased German losses. All in all the Wehrmacht and its Allies suffered a net loss of around 150.000 men. 58.018 dead, 905 captured. Likewise artillery and AFV losses soared with 1.635 and 604 respectively. The Luftwaffe also had to endure a high number of plane losses with 125 fighters, 31 fighter bombers, 69 tactical bombers, 157 level bombers and 91 reconnaissance aircraft.

Soviet losses in the same month amounted to over 573.000 men with 59.062 killed in action and another 306.390 walking into German POW camps. Artillery losses numbered 8.145 pieces while 1.274 AFVs were lost. In the air the VVS reported 1.360 fighter bombers, 132 tactical bombers, and 503 level bombers destroyed.

OOB

Heeresgruppe Nord (v. Leeb)

16. Armee (Busch) - 208.394 men, 2.117 guns, 0 AFVs
II. AK (v. Brockdorff-Ahlefeldt) - 4 infantry divisions
X. AK (Hansen) - 4 infantry divisions
LI. AK (Reinhard) - 4 infantry divisions


18. Armee (v. Küchler) - 228.907 men, 2.493 guns, 0 AFVs
VI. AK (Laux) - 3 infantry divisions
XXVI. AK (Wodrig) - 3 infantry divisions
XXVIII. AK (v. Wiktorin) - 3 infantry divisions
L. AK (Lindemann) - 3 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 4 (Hoepner) - 223.895 men, 2.291 guns, 766 AFVs
V. AK (Ruoff) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXX. AK (mot.) (Stumme) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 SS motorized brigade
XXXXI. AK (mot.) (Reinhardt) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division
LVI. AK (mot.) (v. Manstein) - 1 panzer division, 1 motorized division, 1 SS divisions


Heeresgruppe Mitte (v. Bock)

2. Armee (v. Weichs) - 222.781 men, 2.472 guns, 32 AFVs
1. K.D.
8. SS-K.B.
XII. AK (Schroth) - 4 infantry divisions
XIII. AK (Angelis) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXV. AK (Kämpfe) - 4 infantry divisions


4. Armee (v. Kluge) - 218.128 men, 2.613 guns, 38 AFVs
VII. AK (Fahrmbacher) - 3 infantry divisions
IX. AK (Hell) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXIII. AK (Heinrici) - 3 infantry divisions
LIII. AK (Weisenberger) - 3 infantry divisions


9. Armee (Strauss) - 249.049 men, 2.881 guns, 34 AFVs
VIII. AK (Heitz) - 3 infantry divisions
XX. AK (Materna) - 4 infantry divisions
XXIII. AK (Stemmermann) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXII. AK (Mieth) - 3 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 2 (Guderian) - 161.245 men, 1.718 guns, 526 AFVs
XXIV. AK (mot.) (v. Schweppenburg) - 2 panzer divisions, 2 motorized divisions
XXXXVII. AK (mot.) (Lemelsen) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized divisions


Panzergruppe 3 (Hoth) - 248.261 men, 2.578 guns, 503 AFVs
I. AK (Model) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXVIII. AK (v. Chappuis) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXIX. AK (mot.) (Schmidt) - 2 panzer divisions, 2 motorized divisions
LVII. AK (mot.) (v. Arnim) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division, 1 motorized brigade


Heeresgruppe Süd (v. Rundstedt)

6. Armee (v. Reichenau) - 250.375 men, 2.711 guns, 0 AFVs
XVII. AK (Kienitz) - 4 infantry divisions
XXIX. AK (v. Obstfelder) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXIV. AK (v. d. Chevallerie) - 3 infantry divisions
LV. AK (Vierow) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 Slovakian division


11. Armee (v. Schobert) - 263.484 men, 2.617 guns, 21 AFVs
XI. AK (v. Kortzfleisch) - 3 infantry divisions
XXX. AK (v. Salmuth) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 airlanding division
XXXIV. AK (Schaal) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 mountain division
LIV. AK (Hansen) - 3 infantry divisions


17. Armee (v. Stülpnagel) - 226.161 men, 2.546 guns, 67 AFVs
IV. AK (v. Schwedler) - 4 infantry divisions
XXXXIX. GK (Kübler) - 3 infantry divisions, 1 mountain division
LII. AK (v. Briesen) - 4 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 1 (v. Kleist) - 245.130 men, 2.822 guns, 639 AFVs
III. AK (mot.) (v. Mackensen) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division
XIV. AK (mot.) (v. Knobelsdorff) - 1 panzer division, 1 SS division, 1 SS motorized brigade, Großdeutschland, 1 Slovakian mobile division
XXXXVI. AK (mot.) (v. Vietinghoff) - 1 panzer division, 2 SS divisions
XXXXVIII. AK (mot). (Kempf) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division


Armata 3 (Dumitrescu) - 206.397 men, 1.833 guns, 85 AFVs
4 infantry divisions
Corp. 1 (Ionescu) - 2 infantry divisions
Corp. de Munte (Avramescu) - 1 infantry division, 3 mountain brigades
Corp. de Cav. (Racovita) - 1 armoured division, 3 cavalry brigades


Armata 4 (Ciuperca) - 257.769 men, 2.109 guns, 4 AFVs
Corp. 2 (Macici) - 3 infantry divisions
Corp. 3 (Atanasiu) - 3 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry brigade
Corp. 5 (Levanti) - 3 infantry divisions
Corp. 11 (Constantinescu-Claps) - 1 infantry division, 2 infantry brigades


Gyorshadtest (Miklos) - 2 motorized brigades, 1 cavalry brigade

CSIR (Messe) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division

On 1st October 1941 the German forces in the East numbered 3.437.356 men with 34.626 guns, 2.710 tanks and 3.101 aircraft. The Red Army on the other hand counted 4.575.254 men, 40.992 guns, 2.497 tanks and 4.962 aircraft.

Industry

At the end of September German manpower pools numbered 52.496 men with armaments at 96.248.

On the other side, the Soviets managed to largely complete their factory evacuations in the threatened areas. All in all 146 armament factories were successfully evacuated with 43 lost to the German advance. Additionally 65 heavy industry factories were destroyed along the way.

(in reply to Gabriel B.)
Post #: 127
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 2:20:45 PM   
Callistrid

 

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What's going around Moscow?

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 128
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 6:40:40 PM   
SigUp

 

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Not much, just grinding one hex forward each turn...

By the way, forgot to include that the last time. Before loki's counterattack near Tula messed it up: The Kursk salient in 1941, a near-perfect replication in shape and size


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Post #: 129
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 7:22:19 PM   
gingerbread


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Still interested in a losses screen, scrolled to include Soviet vehicle losses. Realize it's a server game, so next turn if you remember.

Also interested in if you have a gut feel regarding the Soviet attrition losses, this due to the rare 95 morale setting.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 130
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 7:36:40 PM   
SigUp

 

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It's a PBEM game, so here you go (situation prior to my turn 16):



EDIT: Can't say much about attrition damage to the Soviet side. Haven't been paying much attention to that. If I manage to remember about that I'll try to make a guess about it.

< Message edited by SigUp -- 1/22/2014 8:37:58 PM >

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Post #: 131
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/22/2014 8:37:19 PM   
gingerbread


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You're doing well, casualty wise.

2.48M, when allowing for recruited Hiwis, by T15 is the T25 average 10 turns early. The weather is worsening, but the ARM situation cannot be good on the Soviet side with these casualty numbers. Forcing surrender of rifle divisions is a double gain since it not only removes the troops, it also strains the replacement situation when the units rebuilds in refit mode.

You should be very pleased with the 1750 Cavalry Squad losses. That's roughly 1/3rd of a theoretical full compliment of Soviet Cavalry at start of the blizzard.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 132
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/23/2014 8:40:15 AM   
Gabriel B.

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SigUp

VI. AK (Laux) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXV. AK (Kämpfe) - 4 infantry divisions
XX. AK (Materna) - 4 infantry divisions
XXXVIII. AK (v. Chappuis) - 3 infantry divisions
XVII. AK (Kienitz) - 4 infantry divisions
XXXXIV. AK (v. d. Chevallerie) - 3 infantry divisions




I have noticed you replaced the comanders of 6th and 44th corps, these are the 6 corps I tend to disband early on when playing with lock HQ suport .

XVII TH corps survives a bit longer until LI corps arives.
for the cost of replacing a poor leader you get better bang for the buck simply building up
suport units in remaining corps.

It costs abouth 3 turns of AP points but it is a good idea to get the contruction batalions doing their job early ,(turn 6-9) to help with rail repairs and partisan threat.


(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 133
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/23/2014 9:40:51 AM   
Disgruntled Veteran


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quote:



these are the 6 corps I tend to disband early on


Doesn't that leave you terribly overloaded on Command points? I can easily use every Corps in the game till at least 43 and have them packed full.

(in reply to Gabriel B.)
Post #: 134
RE: Monthly Report: September 1941 - 1/23/2014 5:27:43 PM   
Gabriel B.

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Disgruntled Veteran



quote:



these are the 6 corps I tend to disband early on


Doesn't that leave you terribly overloaded on Command points? I can easily use every Corps in the game till at least 43 and have them packed full.


1941 is not even a problem , in 1942 the 6 alied armies can receive some german divisions (I ussually give the jagger div to hungarians ) also you end up with some divisions so demoralised after the first winter that is not even worth bringing them up to strenght .

(in reply to Disgruntled Veteran)
Post #: 135
Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 1/24/2014 2:34:17 PM   
SigUp

 

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Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941

On 4th October 1941 an unfortunate accident threw the highest echelon of the German high command into disarray, in the midst of the critical period in front of Moscow: Franz Halder the chief of the general staff, slipped while walking down the stairs, hit his head and died of his wounds in a German field hospital in Minsk. In a surprising decision Hitler named the former Austrian Lothar Rendulic acting chief of staff, a move that was greeted with great dismay among the German officer corps. [Note 1]

Army Group North

Shortly before his death Halder met with the commander of Army Group North von Leeb and discussed the future operations of his armies. They agreed that the time for substantial offensives in the north was over and on 3rd October von Leeb ordered 16th and 18th Army to go the the defence. 18th Army was to hold the lines between Kalinin and Bologoe while 16th Army was assigned the sector between Bologoe and Podborovye. The area between Podborovye and Lake Onega was to be held by the Finnish forces.

Army Group Centre



In front of Moscow meanwhile 9th Army and 3rd Panzer Group grinded their way forward, advancing only some 10 miles. South of the Oka von Kluge massed his divisions and successfully penetrated the Soviet lines, freeing the two encircled units. In the same time period Guderian, assisted by von Weichs 2nd Army, moved north to encircle the Soviet troops around Orel. Supported by III. AK (mot.) transferred from 1st Panzer Group the Germans penetrated the Soviet lines on 4th October and two days later 14th Panzer Division linked up with 2nd Army's infantry. Immediately the Soviets counterattacked, but unlike the previous weeks the Germans, standing behind the Oka, were able to throw back the attacking Soviet forces.

Army Group South

South of Orel the Germans quickly eliminated the Kursk pocket, netting over 80.000 new prisoners. With the Soviet withdrawal von Rundstedt's divisions mainly focused on pursuing the remnants of Southwestern Front's once proud armies. In the Crimea the German offensive was halted due to heavily fortified Soviet positions in the hills north of Sevastopol. Only the Rumanians were still able to move forward in the light of no Soviet resistance around Feodosiya and Ak-Manay.

[Note 1: Rendulic lost 1 initiative point due to his promotion to Generalleutnant.]

(in reply to Gabriel B.)
Post #: 136
RE: Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 2/4/2014 11:49:37 AM   
juret

 

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nice aar!

Gonna push for moscow during the snow after the mud?

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Post #: 137
Turn 17: 9th October 1941 - 15th October 1941 - 2/5/2014 9:07:25 PM   
SigUp

 

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Turn 17: 9th October 1941 - 15th October 1941

Army Group North

In Army Group North's combat area fighting intensity in the week between 9th and 15th October 1941 was very low. The reorganization of forces was in full swing and by 15th October most divisions of 16th and 18th Army, as well as 4th Panzer Group had reached their designated areas, fixated during Halder and von Leeb's meeting.

Army Group Centre



In the meantime Army Group Centre's units continued their ground assault in the Moscow sector. Heavy infantry assaults moved the Red Army units some 10 miles to the East, while von Bock ordered Hoth and Strauss to mass their divisions for a push towards Kaluga.

Around Orel the pocket formed the previous week was eliminated by 13th October. Guderian's panzers, however, were not content with what they achieved and sought to exploit the weaknesses in the enemy lines, created by ill-fated Soviet counterattacks. The tired Soviet divisions were no match for determined panzer assaults and numerous Soviet divisions were routed as German spearheads stood 20 miles south of Tula.

Army Group South

Similarly to Army Group North, von Rundstedt's divisions also dealt with only minor fightings save for a massive German assault to capture Rostov. Around 5:30 AM on 10th October 1941 over 1.500 guns, supported by 45 He-111 of IV. Fliegerkorps, began launching heavy barrages at the Soviet 230th and 339th Rifle Divisions dug in in the city on the Don. Two hours later the ground assault commenced with 113th and 125th Infantry Division attacking from the East and 198th, 267th Infantry and 22nd Airlanding Divisions attacking from the North and West. Faced with this concentrated assault the Soviets began to buckle by the next day. The staff of 51st Army tried to reverse fortunes on 12th October by sending in 62nd Cavalry Division, but the Germans responded by pushing 11th Panzer and 25th Motorized Division into the fray in addition to the 9th Rumanian Cavalry Brigade. Overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of attackers the Soviet divisions were slowly pushed back to the Don and by 15th October the resistance in the city had ended.

In the meantime fighting on the Crimea has completely ceased as Soviet defenses in the hills near Sevastopol proved to be too formidable for the German-Rumanian forces to attack. Further to the East the Rumanians closed in on Kerch, which was heavily fortified and held by a single Soviet rifle division.

More ominously, beginning in the evening of 15th October the weather began to turn significantly in all parts of the Soviet Union, save for a strip encompassing the Southern Ukraine and Northern Crimea. Over night the roads and fields were turned into a sea of mud, severly hindering mobility. The fearsome raspititsa had arrived - and the summer campaign of 1941 had finally ended.

(in reply to juret)
Post #: 138
RE: Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 2/5/2014 9:09:25 PM   
SigUp

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: juret

nice aar!

Gonna push for moscow during the snow after the mud?

I intend to maintain pressure to about 20th November before pulling out the six most powerful infantry divisions in addition to some panzers. Won't be railed back to Germany, but rather stay in cities near the front.

(in reply to juret)
Post #: 139
RE: Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 2/5/2014 11:50:55 PM   
jwolf

 

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Congratulations on a well fought summer campaign, culminating in the capture of Rostov. You just might get a break in the weather during the mud season with snow in the North Soviet zone. If so, would that be enough to tip Moscow your way during November? If nothing else, the mud turns will give you a chance to get rail lines caught up or at least much closer to the front (assuming the partisans don't sabotage your efforts too badly). Good luck.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 140
RE: Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 2/6/2014 8:53:32 AM   
SigUp

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwolf

Congratulations on a well fought summer campaign, culminating in the capture of Rostov. You just might get a break in the weather during the mud season with snow in the North Soviet zone. If so, would that be enough to tip Moscow your way during November? If nothing else, the mud turns will give you a chance to get rail lines caught up or at least much closer to the front (assuming the partisans don't sabotage your efforts too badly). Good luck.

Thanks. Moscow is pretty much impossible at this stage. Far too well fortified. I'll probably concentrate on Kaluga in the few snow turns. That area is a real headache as a concentrated offensive from there in the blizzard can hurt tremendously.

(in reply to jwolf)
Post #: 141
RE: Turn 16: 2nd October 1941 - 8th October 1941 - 2/6/2014 10:41:06 AM   
gingerbread


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To me it looks like you gave up the idea of causing death by a thousand cuts when you had reached 865 or so.

Those 50k-90k pockets add up. T21+ they also contribute to AP squeeze.

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 142
Monthly Report: October 1941 - 2/12/2014 9:39:52 PM   
SigUp

 

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Monthly Report: October 1941


Frontline 6th November 1941

After more than three months of continuous advance the German offensive was stopped in October by the infamous rasputitsa. Formerly traversable roads turned into muddy quagmires, not only limiting the mobility of the forces, but also severely restricting logistics. Relief came only in the form of a temperature drop with corresponding snowfall, the first of which fell in the Central Soviet Zone on 30th October.

While combat was forced to a halt by the weather, the Germans undertook administrative reorganisations. On 19th October the chaos atop the OKH was finally cleared when Hitler appointed Generalfeldmarschall Günther von Kluge to succeed the killed Franz Halder. His post as head of 4th Army was inherited by XXXXIII. AK's Gotthard Heinrici, who in turn was replaced by Lothar Rendulic. Two weeks later another major rushuffling occured in the area of Army Group Centre, when Generaloberst Erich Hoepner took over 17th Army in the South. He was succeeded by Hermann Hoth as commander of 4th Panzer Group. The reorganisation was completed when LVI. AK's commanding general Erich von Manstein was called upon to lead 3rd Panzer Group.

During the same stretch the Luftwaffe also used the time to recuperate its tired bomber force. With the exception of a couple of groups, the bombers were pulled from the frontlines and refitted. Furthermore the aircraft of select squadrons were upgraded, namely from Ju-87 B to D and Bf-109 F2 to F4.

Moscow Sector



When the first snow fell in late October / early November, the German High Command was finally confronted with the prospect they least wanted - a campaign going into the harsh Russian winter. More daunting than the coming winter, however, were the reports delivered by signal intelligence and aerial reconnaissance. Behind Moscow and Tula the Red Army was massing reserve forces in a scale not anticipated by previous German estimates. Dozens of rifle divisions were waiting to get thrown into battle. Even more ominous was the amount of cavalry divisions stationed between Tula and Kolomna. On 3rd November 1941 Army Group Centre's commander von Bock wrote in his diary:

Newest reports show minimum of 20 cavalry divisions behind Soviet lines opposite 4th Army. Signs point to preparations for a general counterattack. Heinrici very worried about ability of divisions to withstand a major Soviet offensive.

As a consequence Heinrici bombarded Army Group command and OKH with reinforcement requests, pointing out the low combat readiness of the divisions mauled by the Soviet counterattack in late September. 6 of his 12 divisions possessed less than 60 percent of their authorised infantry strength. 7th and 137th Infantry Division were even below 50 percent. Aside from LIII. AK none of 4th Army's corps were capable of conducting offensive operations. Realising the importance of the area held by 4th Army, von Kluge - its former commander - immediately ordered the replacement of two divisions by fresh units arriving from the West in the hope of securing the lines before the Soviets were ready.

Similar news arrived from Army Group South, where cavalry divisions were reported to mass around Levaya Rossosh, Svoboda and Stanichno-Luganskoe. In contrast to 4th Army, however, 6th and 17th Army were in a far better state and possessed enough room to maneuver for times of crisis.

Losses

With combat intensity dropping the losses also bottomed out. In the four October weeks the German forces suffered only 26.000 permanent losses, down from close to 60.000 in September. Artillery losses amounted to 708, while 383 AFVs were written off. The Luftwaffe registered 49 fighters and fighter bombers, 38 Stukas and 66 level bombers as lost. Additionally 56 reconnaissance craft and 7 transports failed to returns from their missions.

Soviet losses in October amounted to 29.879 killed in action with another 127.441 captured. 3.383 artillery pieces and 198 AFVs were also lost. The VVS meanwhile lost 370 fighters, 91 tactical bombers and 190 level bombers.

OOB

On 6th November 1941 the German forces in the East numbered 3.414.928 men, 34.906 guns, 2.687 AFVs (1.970 in panzer divisions) and 3.286 aircraft. Red Army strength on the other hand spiked with the lack of losses. By the first November week the Soviets had 4.956.962 men under arms, supported by 43.847 guns, 3.423 AFVs and 6.795 aircraft.

Heeresgruppe Nord (v. Leeb)

16. Armee (Busch) - 204.407 men, 2.130 guns, 0 AFVs
II. AK (v. Brockdorff-Ahlefeldt) - 4 infantry divisions
X. AK (Hansen) - 4 infantry divisions
LI. AK (Reinhard) - 4 infantry divisions


18. Armee (v. Küchler) - 224.221 men, 2.482 guns, 0 AFVs
VI. AK (Laux) - 3 infantry divisions
XXVI. AK (Wodrig) - 3 infantry divisions
XXVIII. AK (v. Wiktorin) - 3 infantry divisions
L. AK (Lindemann) - 3 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 4 (Hoth) - 236.501 men, 2.464 guns, 732 AFVs
V. AK (Ruoff) - 4 infantry divisions
XXXX. AK (mot.) (Stumme) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 SS motorized brigade
XXXXI. AK (mot.) (Reinhardt) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division
LVI. AK (mot.) (Kirchner) - 1 panzer division, 1 motorized division, 1 SS division


Heeresgruppe Mitte (v. Bock)

2. Armee (v. Weichs) - 200.554 men, 2.228 guns, 34 AFVs
8. SS-K.B.
XII. AK (Marcks) - 4 infantry divisions
XIII. AK (Angelis) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXV. AK (Kämpfe) - 4 infantry divisions


4. Armee (Heinrici) - 207.068 men, 2.585 guns, 29 AFVs
VII. AK (Fahrmbacher) - 3 infantry divisions
IX. AK (Hell) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXIII. AK (Rendulic) - 3 infantry divisions
LIII. AK (Weisenberger) - 3 infantry divisions


9. Armee (Strauss) - 241.112 men, 2.749 guns, 51 AFVs
VIII. AK (Heitz) - 3 infantry divisions
XX. AK (Materna) - 4 infantry divisions
XXIII. AK (Stemmermann) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXII. AK (Mieth) - 3 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 2 (Guderian) - 191.988 men, 2.032 guns, 666 AFVs
III. AK (mot.) (v. Mackensen) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division
XXIV. AK (mot.) (v. Schweppenburg) - 2 panzer divisions, 2 motorized divisions
XXXXVII. AK (mot.) (Lemelsen) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division


Panzergruppe 3 (v. Manstein) - 248.120 men, 2.614 guns, 613 AFVs
I. AK (Model) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXVIII. AK (v. Chappuis) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXIX. AK (mot.) (Schmidt) - 2 panzer divisions, 2 motorized divisions
LVII. AK (mot.) (v. Arnim) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division, 1 motorized brigade


Heeresgruppe Süd (v. Rundstedt)

6. Armee (v. Reichenau) - 245.667 men, 2.703 guns, 0 AFVs
XVII. AK (Schmidt) - 4 infantry divisions
XXIX. AK (v. Obstfelder) - 3 infantry divisions
XXXXIV. AK (v. d. Chevallerie) - 3 infantry divisions
LV. AK (Vierow) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 Slovakian division


11. Armee (v. Schobert) - 265.624 men, 2.701 guns, 21 AFVs
XI. AK (v. Kortzfleisch) - 3 infantry divisions
XXX. AK (v. Salmuth) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 airlanding division
XXXIV. AK (Hollidt) - 3 infantry divisions
LIV. AK (Hansen) - 3 infantry divisions


17. Armee (Hoepner) - 226.326 men, 2.598 guns, 76 AFVs
IV. AK (v. Schwedler) - 4 infantry divisions
XXXXIX. GK (Kübler) - 4 infantry divisions
LII. AK (v. Briesen) - 4 infantry divisions


Panzergruppe 1 (v. Kleist) - 196.405 men, 2.367 guns, 409 AFVs
XIV. AK (mot.) (v. Knobelsdorff) - 1 panzer division, 1 SS division, 1 SS motorized brigade, Großdeutschland, 1 Slovakian mobile division
XXXXVI. AK (mot.) (v. Vietinghoff) - 1 panzer division, 2 SS divisions
XXXXVIII. AK (mot). (Kempf) - 2 panzer divisions, 1 motorized division


Armata 3 (Dumitrescu) - 237.620 men, 2.118 guns, 110 AFVs
Corp. 1 (Ionescu) - 4 infantry divisions
Corp. 4 (Sanatescu) - 4 infantry divisions
Corp. de Munte (Avramescu) - 3 mountain brigades
Corp. de Cav. (Racovita) - 1 armoured division, 3 cavalry brigades


Armata 4 (Ciuperca) - 233.973 men, 1.905 guns, 4 AFVs
Corp. 2 (Macici) - 3 infantry divisions
Corp. 3 (Atanasiu) - 3 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry brigade
Corp. 5 (Levanti) - 3 infantry divisions
Corp. 11 (Constantinescu-Claps) - 1 infantry division, 2 infantry brigades


Gyorshadtest (Miklos) - 2 motorized brigades, 1 cavalry brigade

CSIR (Messe) - 2 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division

Economy

On 6th November 1941 the Germans had 76.770 men available, in addition to 148.717 units of armaments. More worrisome was the drop in vehicles due to the rasputitsa. For the first time in the war the Motor Pool dropped below its requirements with 168.000 compared to a need of 169.000. Vehicles in units were also nearly 4.000 short of the need.

(in reply to gingerbread)
Post #: 143
RE: Monthly Report: October 1941 - 2/13/2014 8:00:21 AM   
Gabriel B.

 

Posts: 501
Joined: 6/24/2013
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the 41b cavalry division is a 4100 men ant, even due to blizard efects few of them get to see 2 on the counter , what makes it so dangerous is the ability to flip hexes and keep up with the tank brigades .

It is very tempting for SHC to push armored brigades in hexes the infantry cant get to , 2 tank brigades backed up by a cavalry division are very dificult to dislodge .

My advice is to brake up 1st mountain division into 3 regimental battle groups and asign them to 2aok, 2pz-aok ,4aok as a tactical
reserve , 4th mountain and the 3 romanian mountain brigades should be reasigned to 11 aok, 17aok, 1p-zaok, 6aok .

If the soviets do not build up all of their cavalry into corps , look for oportunities to hit them hard . Otherwise soviet tank brigades are generaly easy to dislodge even in december .

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 144
RE: Monthly Report: October 1941 - 2/13/2014 2:13:36 PM   
SigUp

 

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Joined: 11/29/2012
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I intend to use both mountain divisions in the area of AGC, bolstering the critical area from 4th to 2nd Army. I'm not that concerned about AGS as I expect to retreat to a line Taganrog - Gorlovka - Kharkov - Kursk anyway. Hopefully the three Rumanian mountain brigades, as well as the Hungarian one will provide enough of a boost. Furthermore one panzer corps each will be based in Stalino and Kharkov, so should the need arise they can be utilized for counterattacking purposes.

(in reply to Gabriel B.)
Post #: 145
RE: Monthly Report: October 1941 - 2/13/2014 2:20:36 PM   
jwolf

 

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Is it possible you could take Sevastopol before the winter?  It would sure be nice to simplify the front there.  It sounds like you're not going to attempt any serious push elsewhere during November?

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 146
RE: Monthly Report: October 1941 - 2/13/2014 3:11:39 PM   
SigUp

 

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Joined: 11/29/2012
Status: offline
Sevastopol with the current forces absolutely not. Level 3 forts in rough terrain is no joke (36 CV). For Sevastopol to be taken I need at least another German infantry corps. Perhaps I'll think about it in 1942.

(in reply to jwolf)
Post #: 147
Turn 21: 6th November 1941 - 12th November 1941 - 2/16/2014 7:35:42 PM   
SigUp

 

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Turn 21: 6th November 1941 - 12th November 1941



Beginning on 6th November 1941 the temperature in the area between Lake Ladoga and Voronezh suddenly fell sharply below zero degrees. Combined with snowfall the ground that had been muddy froze solid in a matter of two nights. The German forces were quick to capitalize on the improved conditions and relaunched their offensive. However, times had changed and the width of the German assault was severely narrowed. The only place where the German assault exceeded tactical character was Kaluga.

Here on a width of only 60 miles 19 German divisions were massed for a concentrated breakthrough of the heavily fortified Soviet lines. On 7th November XX. AK opened the offensive by penetrating 20th Army's lines east of Mozhaysk. Supported by heavy Luftwaffe bombings the Soviet forces were forced to withdraw by noon of the following day. Next the corps proceeded to roll up the flanks of 33rd Army's units to its south. Despite the intervention of 3rd Tank Brigade the two Soviet divisions holding that sector broke under the pressure and retreated eastwards on 10th November.

Just north of Kaluga 3rd Panzer Group began its operations on 8th November under the watchful leadership of the new commander von Manstein. Spearheaded by LVII. AK (mot.), supported by VIII. and XXXVIII. AK the Soviet lines held by 4th, 13th and 33rd Army were pierced after heavy fightings by the evening of 9th November. XXXIX. AK (mot.), the operational reserve of 3rd Panzer Group, was committed into that breach and pushed the lines a further 20 miles to the east. By 12th November Kaluga was under siege by Heinrici's 4th Army and the road to the Nara lay open.

However, the same improved conditions enabled the Soviets to pounce on weakened German units and all six major Soviet attacks succeded in pushing back the German divisions. East of Peremyshl 167th and 292nd Infantry Division were unable to withstand the pressure by the Soviet 3rd and 10th Army and had to concede defeat. Meanwhile three of 2nd Army's divisions were beaten by Soviet attacks between Teploe and Livny. Finally a surprise attack by 12th Army near Voronezh stunned 298th Infantry Division, which had to give up its positions at the Don. [Note]

In the South the front was relatively calm with the only major operation being the offensive by XI. AK to close in on Voroshilovgrad.

[Note: I should have known better by now and stacked the divisions, although I didn't expect loki to attack in an attempt to draw out my panzer divisions. Still, extremely frustrating to see that out of 6 attacks 5 were won by the +1 odds rule.]

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 148
Turn 22: 13th November 1941 - 19th November 1941 - 2/21/2014 2:02:28 PM   
SigUp

 

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Joined: 11/29/2012
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Turn 22: 13th November 1941 - 19th November 1941

The third November week saw a significant calming of operations in the Eastern theatre with the sole exception of Kaluga. After two days of rest von Manstein restarted the offensive with XXXIX., LVII. AK (mot.) and VIII. AK borrowed from 9th Army. The first German blow struck 4th Army's 143rd, 148th Rifle Division and 52nd Tank Division just northwest of Kaluga. Heavy artillery and Luftwaffe strikes paved the way for 28th Infantry and 7th Flieger Division leading the assault. Under heavy losses they scored a breach of four miles depth into the Soviet defenses and by the evening of 14th November the Soviets were forced to committ 52nd Tank Division to stop the breakthrough. Short on reserves, the tired out Soviet divisions were then unable to withstand 7th Panzer Division's attack the following morning and a few hours later the Soviets were routed, losing over 4.000 men and 70 out of 85 tanks. The second German blow came in the afternoon of 14th November to the northeast of Kaluga where 14th Motorized, 20th Panzer and 28th Infantry Division hammered the Soviet lines supported by 648 guns. By the 16th the Soviet forces were driven back and Kaluga itself became the target of German attacks.

The original plan envisioned an encirclement operation, but by this time it had become apparent that the Soviet resistance was too stubborn for an encirclement to deliver timely results. Thus the battle for Kaluga was opened on 16th November with a massive Luftwaffe bombing and the assault of five infantry divisions from 4th Army from three sides. The Soviet 160th, 312th and 350th Rifle Divisions put up heavy resistance and on the first day the Germans were unable to gain more than two miles of ground. Matters changed fast, however, on the next day when 12th Panzer and 20th Motorized Division pushed into the rear of the Soviet forces after the opening German attacks left Kaluga nearly encircled with only a ten miles wide corridor connecting Kaluga with the rest of the Soviet front. Panicked the Soviet troops began to disintegrate, while Kaluga was reduced to rubble by shells from 1.350 German guns. On 19th November Heinrici reported to von Bock that resistance had ceased in Kaluga. In the wake of this result STAVKA ordered Soviet forces from Kaluga down to Alekseevka in the South to disengage from the German forces in order to recuperate and save their strength.

The German commanders carefully registered this development and concluded that the Red Army was preparing for a massive counteroffensive. Signal intelligence, captured Red Army soldiers and aerial reconnaissance indicated that possibly 70 percent of the Soviet forces were directly facing Army Group centre. Guderian for example warned that his troops were too weak to withstand a massed Soviet counteroffensive with the intent of recapturing Orel in the long term. Meanwhile Strauss pulled two divisions out of the frontline for refits in anticipation of Soviet pressure. Hitler, however, was having none of this. In a conversation with staff chief von Kluge he accused the generals of being paranoid and seeing ghosts, impressed like school children by Potemkin villages. But even die-hard supporters within the army were voicing their doubts, as exemplified by 6th Army's commander von Reichenau who reported to his superior von Rundstedt on 18th November 1941:

Five months of heavy fighting have left our units weary and exhausted. With the front stretching thus far out 6th Army has lost the ability to conduct offensive operations on an operational scale. Furthermore the weather is becoming worse by the hour. The freezing temperatures are taking a heavy toll on equipment and men, who are still dressed in their summer uniforms. Therefore news of a buildup of fresh Soviet forces across the Don river are highly disturbing. Especially the presence of an estimated 12 cavalry divisions indicates an offensive intent. I firmly believe in the superiority of our soldiers, but with the current situation a Soviet offensive will be hard to stop in the current lines. Therefore I have taken the liberty and passed the order that heavy equipment be maintained in a mobile state, in case a need for operational evasive maneuvers should arise.

[Sorry, no map this time, just not enough changes to warrant that. Next time will see a map detailing possible lines in the rear that are to be held.]

< Message edited by SigUp -- 2/21/2014 3:03:44 PM >

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 149
RE: Turn 22: 13th November 1941 - 19th November 1941 - 2/21/2014 3:07:04 PM   
jwolf

 

Posts: 2493
Joined: 12/3/2013
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Well done on the conquest of Kaluga; I had read that in Loki's AAR and was curious how you would describe it.  I really like the flavor you give to some of the epic battles, picturing them as successive commitments on both sides of additional divisions in a desperate drive to turn the tide.

With two more turns in November I hope you're able to get firmly dug in before the Russians strike.  Do you expect any more offensive operations during the next two turns, or will you just hit his line where you can, without advancing?

(in reply to SigUp)
Post #: 150
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