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Stalingrad is impossible?!

 
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Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/13/2014 2:00:30 AM   
happyloaf

 

Posts: 35
Joined: 11/14/2013
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I have had a few marginal victories and 1 decisive victory so far in my campaign. I just decisive victoryed Moscow 41. I am not on Stalingrad and I have multiple pioneer units, a few tanks (Panzer IVF's? I think. They are the 2nd best I can purchase right now), 3 of the best towed artillery, 4 fighters, 3 (level 3+) strategic bombers), and some scattered infantry. So far, I have been doing OK. Not great in the campaign but not horrible. I've only really lost 2 crappy tactical bombers. For the life of me I cannot get through this scenario. The enemy tanks shred me. I hit Russian tanks for maybe 1-2 even when they are fully suppressed by Strategic Bombers (because artillery doesn't do anything against them), and then they hit back 4-7+ consistently. The stats look comparable but they destroy my units. I can then always bog down in the middle of the map with the choke point going up to the eastern side of the map where the Russian have the 3 Stalingrad objectives which are surrounded by flack, AA and a freaking river.

I have tried this scenario 3+ times and always within the first few turns I have lost 3-5 of my best units, the rest are almost decimated. I know that Marginal victories haven't helped me and that the Germans took a beating at Stalingrad in real life but seriously this scenario is impossible!

Any advice? Or should I start the campaign over focusing on a unit composition with less pioneers (I loved these guys early on to clear out cities) and more tanks?!
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RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/13/2014 5:56:16 AM   
R35

 

Posts: 640
Joined: 8/10/2013
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As with most things, money (well, prestige) is key here too. Although I had played PG many years ago, when I started the first PzC campaign I was no longer used to the style and I struggled with it. I was getting marginal victories and even if I managed decisive victories, I was very low on prestige and could not afford all the upgrades that I needed. These lacks kept adding up in the campaign and it got harder and harder instead of easier. Second time I tried it it seemed much easier.

I think you`ll be better off starting a new campaign at this stage. Not only that you`ve got the hang of the style of play, but you`re more familiar with the scenarios too. Choose Colonel for a more relaxed play and don`t overdue it with elite reinforcements. It might seem like a waste to lose experience, but the cost is just not worth it at the beginning at least when you need to expand your force. Avoiding losses as much as possible is also key to building prestige.
Also, you might need to change the army composition a bit. For one thing, the great helper when it comes to the soviet tanks in the initial stages when your tanks are not so tough is to have tactical bombers. If the weather is good, 3 Ju-87 will make a lot of a difference. At the beginning of the eastern campaign I wouldn`t generally attack a KV-1 with ground units unless I had already bombed it with a Stuka. You can send these in advance and in a couple of turns wipe out some tank units completely. Personally I`d only keep one strategic bomber in my core in the vanilla campaign and that`s more for the sake of diversity than actual use (usually they`re important when you have to deal with ships). Secondly, you`re probably exaggerating with the pioneers. Infantry is important (pioneers and paratroopers especially) for when it comes to close combat (woods, hills, cities - avoid using tanks in such situations) and fortifications, but while having the ability to avoid the penalties of enemy entrancement, the pioneers have lower initiative than the grenadiers and paratroopers if I remember correctly. Initiative is very important (when your unit fires first, the enemy only shoots back with what he has left). So, I`d vary a bit in the infantry composition. For example in the Stalingrad scenario I remember once using paratroopers to capture the southernmost cities in the Caucasus. Generally, I think that in the vanilla campaign I`d only use one Pioneer, the rest being panzer grenadiers (mostly), but also some paratroopers and a mountain infantry (very important for mobility in scenarios where there are big mountain ranges like in Norway and Stalingrad since they can go fast through mountain terrain and thus can go around enemy strong points). Also, try to get self propelled artillery. It helps to have it deployed instantly as the AI is somewhat reluctant to attack units covered by artillery.
Stalingrad is not actually a tough battle once you`ve mustered the game mechanics and have lead a successful campaign up to that point. Good luck!

< Message edited by R35 -- 1/13/2014 7:23:12 AM >

(in reply to happyloaf)
Post #: 2
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/14/2014 5:58:24 PM   
happyloaf

 

Posts: 35
Joined: 11/14/2013
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Thanks! Guess I will restart the campaign.

(in reply to R35)
Post #: 3
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/15/2014 12:08:14 AM   
happyloaf

 

Posts: 35
Joined: 11/14/2013
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I restarted and am doing normal Col difficulty. I just Def. Victoryed Poland! I bought more tanks and less infantry.

(in reply to happyloaf)
Post #: 4
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/15/2014 9:55:18 AM   
R35

 

Posts: 640
Joined: 8/10/2013
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There`s a topic at Slitherine that pretty much sums up (posts 4 to 6) the broad recipe to avoid big losses and save presite (and consequently do well):
http://www.slitherine.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=449744#p449744
Good luck with the new campaign!

(in reply to happyloaf)
Post #: 5
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/23/2014 1:32:33 PM   
jonasnarvas

 

Posts: 14
Joined: 1/23/2014
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great, thank you for sharing!



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(in reply to R35)
Post #: 6
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/23/2014 9:47:13 PM   
aaatoysandmore

 

Posts: 2855
Joined: 9/11/2013
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As with all good games getting there with more is always best. You should have 2-1 odds at the very least and dropping difficulty while making the game easier is nice it's not the answer. I play all my games at their highest difficulty when I first get them and work my way into victory as I just don't feel satisfied beating an ai on anything less. Ai's are already too easy as it is. If you understand the game mechanics it should be easy. Combined arms and making sure you have at least one unit to move into the hex and or city is very important to winning. It's a game of chess really not Germany vs Russia. Play it that way. One old boardgame method I still use is soaking off, use your crummy units to break units down and then your elite ones to take them over. Just be sure and pull out the crummy units before they are completely destroyed because they do become part of that getting there with the mostest later on in the campaign.

(in reply to jonasnarvas)
Post #: 7
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 1/29/2014 8:31:12 PM   
RPKUPK

 

Posts: 72
Joined: 9/17/2009
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One must CONCENTRATE forces in this battle. Trying to attack Stalingrad from all sides will fail. Deploy all the troops at one end or the other, the north is preferable** because then you can link up with the German AA and anti-tank auxiliaries up there. Shuttling your air force back and forth to these bases is critical especially to refuel/refit your air forces attacking transport in the river. It was critical to send perhaps two Fw-190 across the city via the north to get out over the river and escort the auxiliary tac and naval bombers**. It is critical that you deployed in your core one or more naval bombers, He-177 preferably because they are such great anti-naval bombers. Bunching your attack at one end (northern) will make air coverage easier and more efficient.
Meanwhile move all your auxiliary forces northwards to join your concentrated core (infantry heavy) that attacks methodically with infantry and artillery backup** with some PzIvF2s to beat off the Russian armor. Use your Stuka to help hit Russian armor. After cross-linking with the two northern airfields; move to the coast and south as a slow methodical steamroller! Keep your infantry on city/rough hexes and armor on clear hexes. Use artillery support wisely to support attack and cover your advancing units from counterattack**. Use the auxiliary AA as anti-tank and anti-tank units moving them one hex at a time southward.
Smash as many river crossing Russian transports as possible** as you will not face these units in the city!
Use recon wisely so you won't be surprised by the many Russian armor units and overstrength Russian infantry along the coast.
Keep your air way from the city coast where a lot of Russian AA is waiting to eat up your river attacking air units**.
Be timely with your attack as major objectives have to be taken as turns left run low.

(in reply to aaatoysandmore)
Post #: 8
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 2/1/2014 4:15:49 PM   
RPKUPK

 

Posts: 72
Joined: 9/17/2009
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Oh...oh-oh...oh-oh....Storming Stalingrad....I talked about Docks.

(in reply to RPKUPK)
Post #: 9
RE: Stalingrad is impossible?! - 3/29/2019 8:35:13 AM   
nklauth

 

Posts: 1
Joined: 3/29/2019
Status: offline
The German tanks at that period are weaker than the Russians. You need overstrength good experience and the best ones to beat the Russians with tanks. There is a less expensive option. German tactical bombers are the key to destroy the tanks. Together with experience infantry they win the day. The tanks are simply helpful to hold your line and allow the infantry to survive.

(in reply to happyloaf)
Post #: 10
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