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Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:02:34 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Devoncop needed an opponent and the scenario he wanted to play was StBP and
I'm using the new version of the scenario v653 found in the scenarios section of the
forum. I downloaded it and installed it just now and this is the first running of it
on my machine so I don't know about what changes there have been made or anything about
what's new. It'll be my first trip through it.

Here's the planes I have at my disposal. It looks like I'm going to have to depend on
the P-40 for ground support, P-38's for AS, and I'll need to move from Tunisia to
Sicily soon because the Spitfires don't have a fabulous range. I've heard reports
from warspite1 that the Axis air force are professional veterans with vast experience
compared to my pilots some of whom have only had a single year of training and maybe
some brief service somewhere but nowhere near the caliber of the Germans. I'll have
to start off with single dot settings until I get a feel for what's possible. I'll
concentrate on his air force primarily because I'd like to get air superiority ASAP
and keep it. I intend to use all the bombers on INT most of the time because it's
devestating.

I'm counting on the air force to help me win this war.




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< Message edited by larryfulkerson -- 3/30/2018 1:43:57 AM >


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:15:18 AM   
larryfulkerson


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The American landings were mixed up and some beaches got skipped and there's gaps in
the front lines so as a first task I want to link everybody up, set up a defensive
perimeter, get ready for the German assault to push me back into the sea, and as a
first priority, see if I can't grab a couple of those airfields. I'd like to get
my fighters in there for CAP and maybe some ground support planes. It's part of my
plan to get air superiority soon if possible. That means I want to destroy his
air force entirely and then just spend the war shooting down his replacements.
I'm in no hurry to get to Messina actually and rather enjoy the gameplay in Sicily.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:21:58 AM   
larryfulkerson


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This AAR is best viewed with the TOAW background sound of battle running.

Here's the British landings and they have a lot more hardware ashore so I'm expecting
a lot from them. I need to expand the perimeter and get ready for the German assaults
and see if I can't link up with the Americans. They will be pushing north shortly.
Their first goal is to grab all those fabulous airfields near Messina's environs and
just wait for now.




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< Message edited by larryfulkerson -- 3/21/2018 12:24:34 AM >


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:31:36 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Here's what I'm thinking of doing. This is the original plan, it may change depending
on conditions in the field.

The British are to drive north for the port of Messina nad grab it ASAP and then defend
it's LOC and supply lines and just defend.

The Americans are to slog their way through the mountains to the north coastal road and
drive on Messina, protecting their LOC's and supply lines and act like the protection
for the British left flank.

This may turn out to be a slow process.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:35:15 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Hey you guys...Devoncop bought TOAW IV without much experience with the game and I
think we should help him. It'll be a better game if we do. I want him to be able
to post his questions here and get them answered quickly and you guys can help. Give
him advice and so on. He would appreciate it and it would make this a better game.
I don't play very well myself but I do tend to post a lot. I'll try to make this AAR
entertaining.

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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 12:44:20 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Before I move any of the ground forces I need to check on the supporting elements
and specifically the airplanes. Here's a bomb group that has a range of 189 and I
don't need more than about 90 or so for now for coverage of the entire island of
Sicily. So the next thing I need to do is trim the range on all the bombers so that
they aren't wasting any of their range. They will probably CS and AS better if they
are working a smaller area. That's the theory. I'll use the entire range for INT
of course. For right now I need CS from the bombers. As soon as I get close to
the end of the turn I'll start changing some of the bombers to INT.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 1:02:42 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I've gotten curious about the supply situation and found to my dismay that the levels
in the British area are unacceptable. This is another reason to link up with the
Americans ASAP.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 1:14:32 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I've been moving units and the British units have moved into action, north along the
coastal road and some Axis units popped up so I have to take care of them first thing.
I haven't been able to link up with the Americans yet. I hope to soon.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 1:21:44 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I had the 3rd Inf Div spread out and form a semi-circle around the HQ and then I moved
the HQ so that it's arty would cover everybody. So far no sign of heavy German forces
but I'm expecting some tanks or something heavy to drop on my head.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 1:31:02 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Here's what it looked like when I ran out of turn. Some progress but I'm still
wary of counter-attacks. But I did get a lot of planes transfered to Sicily and
I think I'm ready for whatever Ian has up his sleeve.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 1:33:28 AM   
larryfulkerson


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There were only 5 attacks on the German defenders, to push them back rather than kill
them but soon the carnage will start.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 8:02:26 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Here's what I think I saw during Ian's turn. He's moving all his troops in the west
to the east along the coastal road and I think he flew all the planes on the island
to the mainland and he moved some Germans south to contact with the British and there
were about half a dozen planes in northern Italy that were flown down to about Foggia
or so and he doesn't have any sea cap so far so there's a chance I can trap them all
on the island. LOL.



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< Message edited by larryfulkerson -- 3/21/2018 8:03:16 AM >


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 8:09:40 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I got some reinforcements and boy do I need them. Ian is moving the contingent for
the island toward Messina and I'm going to have a hard time getting through most of
it. First things first, I need to clean out all the German remnants behind my lines
and beef up the front lines as they are configured and take advantages of opportunities.
I'm think I need some tanks out west in that tank terrain. Hexes will get converted
faster. The Americans have some tanks that I can use too.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 8:22:04 AM   
larryfulkerson


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The supply situation has improved remarkably. I think I can make this work. I need
to move the heavy British guns to the north along the coast to get ready for all the
attacking the Germans might do and get the Americans moving north.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 8:38:19 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I moved the British stuff to see if I couldn't contain all the Axis units where they
are and get some resources to better positions. Next I'll start to move the American
stuff. I ran an American recon unit around their positions to see what's there and
it appears empty so far. Maybe I can make use of that.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 9:10:25 AM   
larryfulkerson


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Here's what I decided to do with the Americans and it's a pretty good start but needs
tweaking the next time I get to move. I've got paratroops on the front line and I'd
rather they weren't. I've got everybody backed up by arty and the planes are ready.
There was some interturn furballs according to the losses meter ( lower left ). When
I was checking the planes I found about half a dozen fighters on rest when they shouldn't
be. Usually, after an INT strike or a furball, the participating planes will go to a
rest state and I have to manually turn them back to AS for some reason that hasn't been
explained to me. It's been treated as "works as designed" for so long I've learned to
check the fighters after a fight and reset them. It's a workaround of sorts.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 9:22:22 AM   
devoncop


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Right guys.

All being well...my next report will include pictures after Larry submits his 2nd turn.

For now...as usual the Axis are in some disorder following the invasion.

Main Points :

Sicily is indefensible in anything other than the short term. The West is too open and the Allied Air superiority makes operating in Sicily very difficult. As such any delaying actions have to be seen as just that.

The Herman Goering Division may have an imposing name but its equipment is not the best with relatively few tanks. It blocked the US advance West of Grammichele for a turn but really needs to "get out of Dodge" hoping it can do this without being pinned.

The position in the West is more nuanced. Though the 15th Panzer Gren Divn starts South West of Palermo it is untenable to stay there. The centre of the island is denuded of forces so it just invites being cut off and I will need that Divn desperately later. As such it is railed back to the East (surprisingly escaping interdiction). Similarly some of the Italian mobile Divns (as opposed to the hapless fixed 206th Coastal Divn) are railed back north west of Gerbini. Some troops will be sacrificed in the West though to try and delay...even for a few turns handing the multiple airfields in the West too quickly to the Allies.. To help that there is the beautiful sound of bridges blowing as the Italians show their prowess at defeating concrete and steel that doesn't fight back....

The airfields around Gerbini on the approach to Sicily are a similar dilemma. The terrain is not ideal for defence as it lacks the mountains closer to Messina but again those airfields can't just be handed over to the Allies...Defences are prepared and artillery dug in.

With regard to the air war the first turn showed losses of 3 to 1 in favour of the Axis as Allied air was yet to arrive in force but that will change dramatically. I am a big fan of careful husbandry of air assets and when the status of units moves from Dark Green to anything else I am loathe to use them for long. The time for bombing interdiction will come but not yet JU88's and Dorniers are marshalled on the mainland to get full strength. The fighters will be used in bursts....everything or nothing in the air to keep Larry honest and have to keep fighter bomber assets in air superiority roles rather than adding to my interdiction problem.

Now I await Larrys onslaught !!



< Message edited by devoncop -- 3/21/2018 9:40:08 AM >


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 9:23:25 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I executed those two attacks and after I find that all my fighters are in reorg. I'm
half afraid to fly the bombers now. But I'm going to, figuring that the Axis fighters
are hurting too. That's the theory and I'm probably wrong.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 9:34:02 AM   
larryfulkerson


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quote:

ORIGINAL: devoncop
Right guys.

All being well...my next report will include pictures after Larry submits his 2nd turn.
Thank you for that Ian dude.

For now...as usual the Axis are in some disorder following the invasion.

Main Points :

Sicily is indefensible in anything other than the short term. The West is too open and the Allied Air superiority makes operating in Sicily very difficult. As such any delaying actions have to be seen as just that.

The Herman Goering Division may have an imposing name but its equipment is not the best with relatively few tanks. It blocked the US advance West of Grammichele for a turn but really needs to "get out of Dodge" hoping it can do this without being pinned.

The position in the West is more nuanced. Though the 15th Panzer Gren Divn starts South West of Palermo it is untenable to stay there. The centre of the island is denuded of forces so it just invites being cut off and I will need that Divn desperately later. As such it is railed back to the East (surprisingly escaping interdiction). Similarly some of the Italian mobile Divns (as opposed to the hapless fixed 206th Coastal Divn) are railed back north west of Gerbini. Some troops will be sacrificed in the West though to try and delay...even for a few turns handing the multiple airfields in the West too quickly to the Allies.. To help that there is the beautiful sound of bridges blowing as the Italians show their prowess at defeating concrete and steel that doesn't fight back....

The airfields around Gerbini on the approach to Sicily are a similar dilemma. The terrain is not ideal for defence as it lacks the mountains closer to Messina but again those airfields can't just be handed over to the Allies...Defences are prepared and artillery dug in.

With regard to the air war the first turn showed losses of 3 to 1 in favour of the Axis as Allied air was yet to arrive in force but that will change dramatically. I am a big fan of careful husbandry of air assets and when the status of units moves from Dark Green to anything else I am loathe to use them for long. The time for bombing interdiction will come but not yet JU88's and Dorniers are marshalled on the mainland to get full strength. The fighters will be used in bursts....everything or nothing in the air to keep Larry honest and have to keep fighter bomber assets in air superiority roles rather than adding to my interdiction problem.

Now I await Larrys onslaught !!

Hey there Ian my friend....your analysis sounds like it's on target and I think you did all the
right things for the right reason. Well done. Good moves.

To hear about the losses in the air as 3:1 is refreshing because I hear intel so seldom during a
game. I believe you and your figures. Axis pilots are no slouches. I'm wondering when to start
doing the airfield strikes that I need to do. I'm waiting for more fighters. All mine are down
for maint. ( reorg ) and there's only 5 of them on the island. The rest of the planes are CS
bombers. I'm counting on that CS to help my paratroopers hold the front line facing some
mechanized German brigade four times it's size. So no airfield strikes this turn.

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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 9:38:20 AM   
larryfulkerson


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I got a message that I had run over the rounds and that the turn was over and then
the combat results screen presented itself. Light losses for me. Too bad about
running past the rounds allowed.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 2:17:02 PM   
devoncop


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Apologies for lack of pictures.

Still issues getting the files uploaded. (I am a plank!)

So the highlight this turn was Larry's audacious attempt to capture Primasole Bridge using British 1st Airborne Division...Thankfully I had railed in 15th Panzer Gren Div from West Sicily the previous turn so much like Arnhem the Paras landed almost on top of a recently arrived strong German Divn. Ferocious fighting ensued with the Paras on the South side of the bridge taking 32% losses but still holding on.

The Herman Goering Panzer Divn is in serious trouble having failed to disengage from the Americans just West of Grammichele and the Regia Aeronautica and a few Luftwaffe units are reporting 39 losses having inflicted 104 on the Allies. This is likely to be Italian over optimism but nonetheless I am happy with the air war to date.

Restricted access to airfields may be constraining the allies which makes the battle to defeat 1st Airborne on the bridge and in proximity to Gerbini airbases crucial...........


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 2:55:33 PM   
hingram


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A plank?

I'm playing Sicily to Brenner against the computer(Axis). At turn 12, the Brits are knocking on doors in Messina and the Americans are trying to avoid annihilation.

My dad was in North Africa during the war (Army Air Corps) supporting the airfields in Tunisia.Picture is obviously not Tunisia.





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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 3:52:23 PM   
devoncop


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Hi!

I assume you mean the Axis rather than the US are trying to avoid catastrophe


It is a fascinating scenario scenario that can swing quite violently back and forth given the imbalance in forces due to large reinforcements and withdrawls along with very challenging terrain and supply issues. The Axis on the mainland can be very difficult to shift and troops extricated from Sicily can help a lot.

Larry has done something I haven't come across before in this scenario with his use of the Airborne Divn so my planned moves with 15th Panzer Gren Divn are being somewhat disrupted already !

Don't be disheartened....the pendulum can swing back quite quickly...



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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 3:59:56 PM   
larryfulkerson


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quote:

ORIGINAL: hingram
A plank?

I'm playing Sicily to Brenner against the computer(Axis). At turn 12, the Brits are knocking on doors in Messina and the Americans are trying to avoid annihilation.

My dad was in North Africa during the war (Army Air Corps) supporting the airfields in Tunisia.Picture is obviously not Tunisia.



That looks a lot like a picture I saw in "The Goat Herders Guide to the Universe". Cool. Give my thanks to your
dad for his service.

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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 4:07:34 PM   
larryfulkerson


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Here's what happened during Ian's move. He surrounded my paratroopers. They are
goners. Also, there was an attack somewhere down south of the paratroopers and I
don't yet know where or what the results were. More troops out west were evacuating.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 4:38:55 PM   
larryfulkerson


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So here's the moves I came up with for this turn. Attacks are scheduled to clean
up a remnant and see if I can punch a hole in the German lines somewhere. I found
an airfield on Sicily that didn't have any planes on it yet and flew in a bomber and
two fighters. I'm not sure what to do in the west. I feel uncomfortable about
sending in single regiments and I'm thinking I'll put the division back together and
just wait it out in the west.




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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 4:50:17 PM   
devoncop


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Targets in Western Sicily





These are airfields I need to delay Larry getting to........Given what I have defending them....this will not be a long delay :-)


< Message edited by devoncop -- 3/21/2018 4:51:32 PM >


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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 5:27:43 PM   
hingram


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Nah the Americans were in deep Kimchi. However their opposition just melted away in Turn 21. Messina has fallen. The Spitfires have been moved to Sicily. Badly needed AA units appeared in the cluster of airfields NW of Augusta.

Note: Armor units are almost as effective as AA units on airfields IIRC.

quote:

ORIGINAL: devoncop

Hi!

I assume you mean the Axis rather than the US are trying to avoid catastrophe




< Message edited by hingram -- 3/21/2018 5:28:45 PM >

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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 5:34:36 PM   
larryfulkerson


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I can't hardly wait to get rid of the Italians. If
I recall correctly all I have to do is invade the
Italian mainland somewhere north of Reggio. Easier
said than done. I don't have any sea cap. for one
thing.

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RE: Adventures in Italy - 3/21/2018 5:34:54 PM   
devoncop


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This explains the dilemma in Western Sicily...




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