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NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/6/2015 3:46:22 AM   
Timotheus

 

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Per the newest manual:

Non-Finnish units with morale > 55 lose 2 morale per turn.

Hoo boy.

Non-Finnish units with morale > 60 lose 2 morale per combat.

Lawdy.



So a Romanian unit, morale < 55, loses 2 morale per turn.
How many turns does the winter last?
Are the morale changes permanent or do they go back up automatically after winter is over?


A German unit, morale > 60, loses 2 morale per combat.
Again, are the morale changes permanent or do they go back up automatically after winter is over?


If a unit is attacked again and again, the morale for a decent German unit can go down VERY LOW indeed, because the Soviet can attack with no hope of success and just eat the losses and not care.

Am I understanding the First Winter Morale Rule correctly?


Edit: Just noticed morale loss was reduced from 2 to 1 (US_LETTER manual). Still, my questions are:

1) How many turns does the winter last?
2) Are the morale changes permanent or do they go back up automatically after winter is over?

< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 6:50:17 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 6:04:37 AM   
loki100


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its messier than you are assuming.

yes a German unit left out on the front lines all winter will end up with relatively low morale, you can expect combat values of 5-7 for your infantry divisions at the end.

unit morale varies around national morale, so if the impact of winter drops a unit below the NM, put them in the rear on refit and they will recover (realise this is easier with the Soviets than the Germans).

If the Soviets attack with no regard, they too will wreck their morale. There is no morale gain built in, so each loss takes 1 morale off their units. They have to aim to win a decent number of battles.

Have a look at how the winter has played out in some AARs. A common twist is for Soviet attacks in December becoming more localised in Jan and limited German offensives by Feb/March. You need to use major cities as the core of your defense and you can attack out of them. It all comes down to relatively how strong the two sides are at the start of winter.

You can shelter key units, in my current PBEM SigUp took his 8-10 best infantry divisions and hid them away so they were capable of attacking in 1942.

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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 3:05:48 PM   
heliodorus04


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Proper use of forts and towns helps a lot. Cities are no-brainers.
Proper use of counter-attacks, even in blizzard, but especially in winter can help key units rebuild morale.
Hiding your best infantry divisions in cities is essential.

Taking Leningrad helps create a big relief by enabling the Finnish army to hold the northern sector of the line. Since Army Group North is where some of the best infantry divisions start, this enables you to hide those in cities. Even if the Finns lose 1 morale per turn being below the no-attack line, it's better than what happens to the German units in open there. And the Finns can defend.

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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:27:03 PM   
Timotheus

 

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OK, need some help here.

I need to have infantry divisions to keep a line of some sorts; a continous front line. So each turn those infantry divisions in the line will LOSE morale for ALL of winter turns? Whelp.

I did not take Leningrad, because I am a newbie and am already in 2nd mud turn. Enemy losses are 2.98 million troops; I thought I was doing good?

OK, I need some guidance.

I am at turn 20.
Front is continous: Leningrad (cut off from land), Lake Ilmen, Velikie Luki, Vyazma, Bryansk, Sumy, Poltava, Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporozhye, the 1 hex entrance to Crimea.

I will get a few turns of winter and then blizzard, I assume.

I cannot hide my infantry in cities (or villages/towns also work to mitigate winter, is that true?) as there are not enough cities/villages/towns and also I cannot leave 20-100 km holes in the line!

I don't want my panzer troops to lose morale; should I take a risk and rail them to Berlin and refit all winter?

If I get a lot of my infantry divisions to towns/cities, I will leave gaping holes in the line and we all know what happens to CV of surrounded troops...


I think my Barbarossa failed - I did not take Leningrad, I did not take Moscow, I did not take Kharkov nor Stalino.


However, I played to pocket as many enemy troops as I could have - make kessels every turn and take out as many enemy troops as I could. Effectively playing Barbarossa the way it was originally designed - destroy the Red Army.

So now what?

Heeeelp

(Few screens follow to show my situation)











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< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 6:36:22 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:30:12 PM   
Timotheus

 

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Losses screen 2:






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< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 6:30:44 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:34:49 PM   
Timotheus

 

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OOB:






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< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 6:35:08 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:39:36 PM   
Timotheus

 

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Leningrad situation.

I wanted to do a quick pincer to grab some Soviet divisions in the Lake Ilmen area and shorten the front line significantly while at it - then the mud hit.

I am playing with non random weather BUT I have not looked at when mud/blizzard/winter hits to keep the surprise.

So now what here?

Do an all out assault on Pavlovo and Leningrad or go for the northern ports of Kobona and Sviritsa?

Or do the Lake Ilmen pincer and shorten the front?




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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:45:39 PM   
Timotheus

 

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Crimea - wanted to cut off the Soviet troops before they flee to the Crimea, but they have the port of Genichesk (curses!) which keeps them supplied and I could not get to it in time to cut them off and make a kessel - ****ing ******* mud!

I wanted my brave (and actually useful and combat worthy) Romanians to flood into Sevastopol and take it by storm but, again, mud... I can't even take the 3 division stack in the east (with the 2nd Guards division - yes, they resisted all assaults).






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< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 6:45:59 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:49:49 PM   
Timotheus

 

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The Kursk-Orel theatre...

I had a pretty big kessel going and took out a lot of Soviet divisions already - it was a big panzer/motorized drive behind the enemy lines to cut off a lot of Soviet units.

I was actually pretty proud of myself there... then next turn mud hits.

...

Which actually did not work out too bad as the out of supply Soviet units could not retreat/break pocket and even in mud due to the incredibly bad CV when isolated enemy units fell one by one to my infantry hasty attacks (in mud! isolated units in this game are f***ed, truly).

But Kharkov and Orel are out of reach in the mud...




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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 5:54:05 PM   
Timotheus

 

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After thinking on this here's what I will do...

Damn the torpedoes!

Full speed ahead!

In reality no German general would withdraw ALL panzers to Berlin to take a holiday while their landser brethren froze to death or were shot up by Soviet desant troops jumping from tanks.

We got this far and did well - we will attack in winter also.

If/when the Soviets attack, we will just view it as an opportunity to cut them off and make more kessels and then the infantry can clean them up when they are isolated/behind our lines to get their morale up.

I don't see it working any other way.


Thoughts?

And, again... help a newb please, pointers and advice very much welcome.

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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 6:34:38 PM   
heliodorus04


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I'm happy to help, if I can.

Before I can respond to your updated information, I need to know if this is a game vs. the AI or vs. a Human opponent.

In either case, the first number I look to when you hit mud is the number of Soviets taken prisoner. You have to get at least 1.5 million vs. a Human (so you're good there) and 2 million is kind of the goal to shoot for vs. the AI, so again, you're okay.

If you're a newbie, remember you can start over.
(I start over often enough that I have a completed Turn 1 that I keep as a starting point for new campaigns).

If your expectation is to win the game in 1941 as Axis, it's never going to happen. (You could get good enough to do it vs. the AI on normal, but it would be as boring a game as I could imagine.)

For a newbie, learning how to mitigate the effects of the Blizzard of 41 is an essential skill.
Bemoaning the mechanic doesn't help you achieve this. There's no way to simulate the Eastern Front without the winter of 41 having a terrible effect on exposed German divisions and their combat proficiency (which is how you need to conceive of the term 'morale'). The Soviet player has to endure 17 turns of inescapable and horrible defeats whose damage can only be mitigated, never controlled. The German has to spend 12 turns experiencing basically a similar sort of thing. Fair is fair ;)

It is much easier, as the Axis, to have a great 1941 than it is to have a good 1942. The game has a long learning curve that is steep at times (especially if you switch to vs. Human play), but it's enjoyable every step of the way. i've been playing it since 2010, I think.

A tradition to survival is as we've described (save key infantry divisions from its effect, and all of your panzers if possible). Review some After Action Reports in that section of the message boards. It will teach you more than I can. The tactics are well known and easily found in those AARs.

< Message edited by heliodorus04 -- 1/6/2015 7:35:58 PM >


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RE: First Winter Morale Rule - confused and horrified - 1/6/2015 6:58:49 PM   
Timotheus

 

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Versus Normal AI, all options NORMAL, full FOW, Blizzard NOT-reduced.

Sigh... the thing to do would be to pack all the panzers onto trains and ship them to Berlin to rest and refit.

And put as many infantry divs into cities and towns/villages (DO THE SMALLER TOWNS/VILLAGES ALSO MITIGATE WINTER EFFECTS? HISTORICALLLY THEY SHOULD).

So, put infantry in towns, while keeping some in the open to hold the line.

Do not let myself be encircled - game taught me that much, CV plunges when that happens.

And for god's sake take the ports which supply Leningrad - make them isolated and take the city to free the Finns.

< Message edited by Timotheus -- 1/6/2015 8:08:26 PM >


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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/6/2015 9:49:08 PM   
Dr. Foo


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Your game is almost a mirror image of my game except you're a lot closed to Leningrad than me. I'm on turn 18 it's the first mud turn and I'm terrified!

I need a Surviving Winter Workshop!

I really do not want to start again. What I gather is I should leave just enough inf on the line to hopefully hold, move as many units into cities, should I build forts? Will forts offer protection from the effects?
Panzers do they all get pulled back to cities or Berlin?





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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/6/2015 10:18:00 PM   
VigaBrand

 

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Look at the divisions. Some division will be withdrawing like 11th Panzerdivision (for africa). These units can burnt down in the winter.
Small citys with at least population of 4 gain a dice to protect or fail to protect your units.
Fort levles protect your units CV. Look at a good winterline, retreat to them and dig in (sappers will help you).
Search for the infantery divisions with moral 90 or more. This will be the hammers in '42 and so you should protect them.
Search for a small line to defend with some towns and urbans in the line.
Or retreat ALL you units for the first winter to the old border. Rundstedt suggest it historical. You lost all land you gain, but you saved your army!
Ths russians saved there army with retreat, you can do it the same. Or retreat part of them and the other part stands on a shorter line.
The german division will regain moral after the winter. If you have less moral than your national moral is, you get each round a bonus to moral. So the germans will regain in mud part of there moral.
Set the TOEs from fromntline units down, to protect your conscripts and armament pool.

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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/6/2015 11:19:44 PM   
Aurelian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: VigaBrand

Look at the divisions. Some division will be withdrawing like 11th Panzerdivision (for africa). These units can burnt down in the winter.




You could, but IIRC they'll sit on the map edge soaking up replacements until they're back to normal, then leave. Or something like that. Can't quite recall.

As far as old Runstedt. while he suggested it, he also got fired... :)

< Message edited by Aurelian -- 1/7/2015 12:22:05 AM >


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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/7/2015 2:51:31 AM   
jwolf

 

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Key point IMHO: you're not at winter yet. You have a few mud turns in October and very early November, then you get snow turns in most of November. You MUST keep the initiative and attack during those few snow turns. In theory you could make an assault on the Leningrad area, but that's a big risk at this point. Much better, again IMHO, are several areas that are very likely bets you can achieve to get your army in much better position for the cruel winter turns (BTW the winter lasts 13 turns).

My advice, north to south, take it for what it's worth:

1. Take Novgorod and close the pocket around Lake Ilmen. You'll bag about 8 divisions including a very valuable mountain division.

2. I don't know what your front is like at Moscow, but if there is a key city in reach, take it. Those cities will anchor your winter lines.

3. You can certainly take Orel, and Kursk is possible (don't know about Kharkov).

4. Near Crimea, you must eliminate that stack to the west, behind your lines. It will be very dangerous if you leave it. Make sure all ports are garrisoned. You should be able to blow away all the Soviet units outside Crimea and then hold the line at the three entrances to the peninsula.

Elsewhere, hope your troops dig in and get well fortified. Fortified units in a city will be very hard for the Soviets to defeat. To the best of my knowledge, general practice for the panzer units is twofold: keep what you can well rested in safe areas (i.e. big cities or back in Poland/East Prussia); and/or use them as fire brigades on reserve -- ideally from cities or small towns a hex or two behind the lines -- and they will cause a lot of pain for your AI opponent. You will probably have to give some ground in December, less so in January, and February is much more give and take, pretty much equally brutal for both sides.

Be warned that the partisan war will heat up considerably during the mud, snow, and blizzard seasons. Keep good coverage of the named cities and make sure you have some small units behind the lines, spaced out on or near the rails, to track down and destroy partisans when they pop up. They will proliferate wildly during these turns.

If you can keep control over the partisans, one good thing during the winter is that you can get a much better rail network put together. Supply starts out poor at the beginning of the mud in October, but by the end of the winter you should be in good shape.

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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/7/2015 3:02:36 AM   
Timotheus

 

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Thanks!

13 turns sounds... bad.

I am in November now, and #1 is done and dusted. No brainer - a free pocket, almost no casualties AND shortening of the line.

Done.

Re #2... cap the cities to anchor my line? I guess the idea is to rotate the troops in and out of the cities then? Or just for the defensive value of the cities themselves?

#3, same as #2?

And #4, done - the mighty Romanians are cleaning up and Crimea is bottled up - however, there are lots of Soviet units in Crimea, near Genichesk port (sp?) which I just know WILL be trouble - they are tank and inf troops stacks of 3CV there... Wanted to bag them also but my panzer guys had to do another kessel in Central front to bag some easy prey and it was either that or motor all the way south and lose 2-3 turns just for movement...

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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/7/2015 3:21:32 AM   
jwolf

 

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quote:

Re #2... cap the cities to anchor my line? I guess the idea is to rotate the troops in and out of the cities then? Or just for the defensive value of the cities themselves?


Mostly the defensive value, but rotation could be a help, too.

I advise attacking vigorously wherever you can throughout November. Even if you don't take new territory, the odds will favor you; your losses will generally be light and you'll beat up the other guys as much as possible before they turn the tables on you in December.

Beware the Rumanians during the winter: they will not hold unless well stacked and fortified, and not even then if Ivan really wants to hit them.

Your mountain divisions are like precious gold. You only have a few of them (just 3 or 4?? don't remember). You can break them down into divisions to help hold certain key spots. In a really critical place, you can put a whole mountain division there.

The Finns are also absolute monsters during the first winter, but unfortunately you can't use them. :(

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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/7/2015 8:49:44 PM   
Dr. Foo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwolf

quote:

Re #2... cap the cities to anchor my line? I guess the idea is to rotate the troops in and out of the cities then? Or just for the defensive value of the cities themselves?


Mostly the defensive value, but rotation could be a help, too.

I advise attacking vigorously wherever you can throughout November. Even if you don't take new territory, the odds will favor you; your losses will generally be light and you'll beat up the other guys as much as possible before they turn the tables on you in December.

Beware the Rumanians during the winter: they will not hold unless well stacked and fortified, and not even then if Ivan really wants to hit them.

Your mountain divisions are like precious gold. You only have a few of them (just 3 or 4?? don't remember). You can break them down into divisions to help hold certain key spots. In a really critical place, you can put a whole mountain division there.

The Finns are also absolute monsters during the first winter, but unfortunately you can't use them. :(


Well this makes me feel better. I've had this game since it came out and never have I made it this far...yeah I know pretty sad right! This time I'm determined to play until the bitter end.
When faced with the first mud turn and all my units CV's plummeted to 1 I didn't know what to do next. Thank you all! Because of your input now I know I still have a few turns before winter sets in. I can take a few key cities and start to dig in and move my Panzer to safety.

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RE: NOW WITH PICTURES First Winter Morale Rule HORROR - 1/8/2015 3:17:24 PM   
micheljq


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Thanks for the pics, it is like a AAR. I play the campaign as the soviets, it is my first game, T9. I must say that i am really looking forward for the rasputitsa.

I did so many errors and concepts that I am still learning. I may have to begin another campaign.

Michel.

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