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AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" (SoE 1939)

 
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AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" (SoE... - 7/8/2020 3:24:43 PM   
AshFall

 

Posts: 45
Joined: 4/16/2019
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Hello everyone. :)

Some of you may remember Will and me from the old SC forums, and our many AARs in the various SC games there. We have recently begun picking up the new series, and have played two (short) games off the 1942 scenario. I got badly, badly beaten both times. It seems I have some catching up to do with the new systems! :D

Anyway, in my own tradition this will be quite wordy. Will has said that he is posting his own AAR, also in our "dual" tradition. He is very good with brevity, so you'll get both flavors! We dont read each others threads until it's over of course.

Please dont comment anything in here about what the other is doing or thinking. Also, we like to discover the strategies ourselves, but will happily take tips on pure mechanical/rules things we're missing. I would prefer if you err on the side of caution where the line between them blurs.

So, since I'm itching to get some payback for the heinous humiliations these two games past, here we go!

I hope you'll enjoy :)

/Ash
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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/8/2020 4:03:08 PM   
AshFall

 

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Joined: 4/16/2019
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Due to what seems to be arbitrary (and in my opinion damn silly) restrictions on the forum I'll have to split every turn into one or more posts. Oh well, it is what it is.

Turn 2: A new beginning.

The Eastern Front

Poland fell on the second turn, I thought it would be better to operate a 7str army into Warzaw than keep the entrenched garrison, that might have been a mistake. Looking at the values now it definitely was, a Garrison is only 1 step worse at defending than an army. Gawd, I need to look at numbers more. The maneuvers made behind German lines seem to have had no effect on their supply. Well, lessons learned. Poland surrendering on the 2nd turn was standard for the old game, so I hope this isnt too bad.

The War at Sea

In the atlantic the french destroyer caught a german sub heading south towards the mediterranean, unfortunately we dont quite understand how to fight them yet, so despite shelling it was unharmed, and hit the destroyer back. Oh well. I’m trying to establish a net around it to catch it when it moves, depending on how Will does it. Havent really gotten the hang of the new mechanics here yet, but I think it gets caught if he tries to naval cruise. He might just be able to pass by in “silent” mode, and if he goes “normal” movement getting caught wont stop him either I think. But at least it will cost him movement, and I might catch him again.

Elsewhere we’re baiting a trap for the German navy by sinking norwegian merchantmen. They’re protesting we respect their “territorial waters”. Pffft. We’ll respect your “waters” when you stop selling your stuff to nasty fascist dictators. You’ll get invaded anyway. “How do I know?”. Well, Have you looked at poland lately? What Poland you say? Exactly.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/8/2020 4:29:06 PM   
AshFall

 

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The Western Front

Speaking of invasions. France is a Sheeeeiiiit sandwich. I mean, just look at them! How on earth do you get caught so unprepared by a crazy warmonger who have been openly declaring his intentions of conquest for the past six years? It’s disgraceful. What do you mean stones and glass houses? “Peace in our time?” Oh, that. Well, we’re sending the B.E.F (Best Effing Fekkers) so we’re not -totally- unprepared. We do have the stiffest upper lips you know, it’ll all be fine. The Germans will get stuck in Belgium just like the last war, you’ll see. You just leave the defense of Northern France to us, like last time.

Unfortunately Will likes to play silly buggers, invading stuff in the middle of the winter way before schedule and all sorts of ungentlemanly conduct. It’s really quite vexing.

I really like that part of these games, where you havent yet learned all the “Must do” tactics, you dont know exactly how many turns to X or Y, dont know all the events etc. It’s an exciting time full of unintentional comedy and facepalm moments. It’s also a bit stressful. The allied research tabs are abysmal. What the heck have the French been doing all these years, they havent even invested in infantry weapons yet. “You were busy building a wall? Did you get the Germans to pay for it?”

The question then is, is it worth investing in research for France? Checking the manual it would seem I would get 2-7% per turn base (avg 5%), and +1% per turn since the germans have an advantage. Soooo… 3-8% per turn, unless GB gets a lucky S&I hit early, then 4-9%.

Going by my completely anecdotal and distant memory of the old SoE I’d say I have about ten turns until I get invaded, if Will plays by the book. There are some reasons to do so, weather and the timing of invading denmark/Norway and then toppling Luxemburg/netherlands, and then belgium on a two to three turn schedule. That boosts German morale to record heights and make their troops nearly superhuman. Morale is, looking at the readiness calculation, a big part of it. And readiness decides how much str. you actually fight with.

On the other hand attacking early could mean I get caught completely off base. Wouldn’t be the first time. So, ten turns. Let’s go with that for now. Still a pretty lousy chance of getting infantry weapons in time with France. It would require getting a breakthrough. Will did spend 400mpp on research on his last turn, no prizes for figuring out on what (its tanks and infantry weapons :P).

If he hits a lucky break and gets IW lvl 2 before the invasion of France that would be exceptionally bad. Pretty low risk though, with a 1-6% per turn (for lvl 2) and what, eight more turns to do it. Even if he hits 6% every turn he won’t even have the possibility of a breakthrough.

Nah, not worth it. Unless he tries to go for full conquest of course, in which case it will be necessary for putting up any resistance in Algeria and prolonging the conquest of France. Damnit.

So what are the options? Given a total pool of around 1000 to 1200ish MPP for the defense of France.

I could more or less abandon it and let it fall easily. I could then use their MPP together with UK to invest in diplomacy on the USSR at 150/chit. I could spend 450 there and forego infantry weapons without impacting things fatally. If things work like in the old game, the French diplo chits remain active after their surrender.

MPP Collection = Total Resource Value*Industrial Modifier * Mobilization Value

So, given the current value of industrial readiness in the USSR, 1% of mobilization would be… 2.6mpp (20% = 52). Manual says USSR start mobilizing industry Jan 1940. Let’s hazard a guess at 100mpp extra base or so over 10 turns (resources growing by 1 per turn, probably to str 10). Current base production 260, later base production 360.

Let’s say we spend 750mpp off the UK and France combined. 5 chits, 25% chance to hit. Best “Bomb” it in that case, so Will has less chance to respond. Each hit 8-15%, if damned lucky 16-30%. Could net us 2 hits before 41. 25% or so extra mobilization sometime during 1940 could be pretty swell, and net us 80-90mpp per turn getting ready for barbarossa, not counting industry improvements. That would give us room for crucial research investments above and beyond what we could otherwise get.

I’m warming a little to the idea. What else could we get for the defense of France for our money?

Armies are strong defenders, but expensive. Better to invest in Special forces early, cheaper and the same defensive stats. AA is equivalent to corps sans infantry weapons, and 50mpp cheaper, and will double as putting the hurt on the Luftwaffe.

There is the option of a heavy tank, a bargain at 300mpp. Or normal tanks, if there is one thing France surprisingly has it’s advanced tank tech.

Armies cost 12 to 13 mpp per step to reinforce, corps 7 to 8. At a glance we have 37 steps of armies and 38 steps of corps, 19 of which I’d say are essential, to reinforce on the map. 462mpp of armies (definitely want these) and 285mpp (142) of corps. The earlier reinforced the better, as their readiness and morale depends on how long they can recoup them at full str. So with the abysmal production of the French you’ve got a pretty limited window of flexibility to the tune of 400 to 500mpp total. That’s my diplo investment right there. I might be able to drop an AA unit, that’s pretty much it.

Right. I think I’ll go with the Soviet strat, see how that turns out. So that means investing in some spread around reinforcements and then stockpiling.


For now, I switch out the armies stuck on the maginot line, aiming to put them in defensive positions inland. I also move up the strat bomber and relocate the british fighter while upgrading the french one, aiming to hit the saar mine once it starts rebuilding. Occupying it might cost the germans a bunch of MPPs, depending on if it “destructs” on recapture or not.

So what can the UK do to help, aside from dropping their own 300mpp into my “Cozy up to the other crazy dictator” strat. Let’s not call it that, that wont sound right for the history books later. Uh … the “Pan eurasian mutual appeasement and resistance initiative?” Codename: Puma. Yeah, that sounds right.


I want at least five British units in France to make sure they can fight for as long as possible given their ****ty circumstances. Some tanks would be great. but the UK still has their rusty tin cans from the great war sitting around and havent figured out how to make them go “whee” yet. I am getting another fighter, and could perhaps use my carriers to hit land targets…

I think I ought to buy an anti tank unit, give me some ability to hurt exposed panzers, and a special forces unit that is flexible and easy to evacuate from anywhere. I think that’s about that.

The UK is also in desperate need of a huge amount of research. More about the UK next post.


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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/9/2020 8:20:39 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 3

A couple of interesting decisions this turn.

First, communists are starting trouble in France agitating for peace with Germany. Dang commies. Ban them! Court marshals and all the things! But wait, you say, werent you going to pursue a cozy up to the other dic… operation Puma?

Yes yes. But it’s a -secret-. Hitler cant suspect a thing until it’s too late, so we’ll play it real sly. *Taps nose*. I’ll do the usual stuff, and the WAllies will posture and bluster, making it out to be all sorts of conflicts. Then WHAM, sudden diplo! Eh eh?

Hm.

Anyway. Stalin got his hands on some land, Lithuania to be exact, and he does love his lands. Not the polish bit he gave up in return, but who cares about some ****ty polish land? That we just took. Noone said this had to make sense. Did I mention Stalin loves his land? Yep, we’ll grab some some those Finns too. Cant be too hard. The iron joseph also has odd tingles in his tummy about preparing for winter wars. Sounds like personal issues to me.

The War at Sea

Anyway, we keep the net around the spotted submarine intact, and it is spotted again trying to slip away by the Marseillaise light cruiser. Despite being hit by four destroyers, the little bastard has caused seven steps of naval losses (2 battleship, 5 light cruiser) and three destroyer steps. In return for three submarine steps… ugh. God dang phallic totems. The british nerd department does not like them maths, watching mpps vanish into the ocean, literally.
And there is another out there, sinking our merchantmen. Well, one thing at a time.

We’re getting even with our own phallic objects, two subs now raid norwegian shipping. Another is on the way from the mediterranean.

Every little point we can sneak off the Germans matters.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/9/2020 7:42:46 PM   
AshFall

 

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The western Front

The occupation of the mines at Saar prove successful, the Germans fail to dislodge the French corps, and it is reinforced. Little trickles…

The French armies move to better defensive positions, picture to follow next post or so.

[Red window insert] The strategic bombers moved into position to hit the Ruhr can't do so, they’re getting orange X warnings. Odd.

France stockpiles MPP, UK buys the AT unit mentioned previously.

Her Majesty’s government decides it’s not worth alienating the US to get two ports in Ireland, and respect Irish neutrality and independence.

I think a more comprehensive plan for the UK is going to have to wait for next post again. Stay tuned!





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/9/2020 9:44:23 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 4

The war at sea

I lost the submarine, and couldn't find it again. Will is raiding halifax with a German battlecruiser and a sub though, so I’m heading there to intercept and spreading out my destroyers to see if I can catch the U-boat.


The Western Front

Defense planning time!

So. France.

Except for the required front defense france has 6 armies and two corps available (Red diamonds and circles below). The red line is manned by well entrenched corps.
Aside from that I’m looking for forests, hills and rivers. A forest equalizes infantry of one step lower infantry weapon tech, and provides a crucial +2 def vs tanks. Rivers penalize enemy readiness by 20%, lowering their effectiveness by quite a bit. German units drunk on conquests elsewhere won't be bothered as much (20% penalty on 120% readiness isn't too bad) but it’s what I’ve got.

I’ll let the better upgraded Brits handle the north, where terrain is not as favorable.


The breakthrough usually happens through Luxemburg, the ardennes and belgium. With a strong defense in good terrain on the Luxemburg/Ardennes approach I hope to make the enemy strike primarily through the Belgian lowlands, hitting Reims and the north coast.

With the incoming british units (a total of army, 2 corps, AT, Special forces) standing around Amiens, French armies, special forces and engineers will hold the Reims area. Hopefully an event that calls up spanish engineer corps will allow me time to build a fortification NW of Reims to cover the gap there. Hopefully the picture gives a general idea (star = special forces, arrow = engineers, Triangle = AT, Square = tank). The toughest defense where the enemy will want to advance most, weaker in depth just to make “swing arounds” a little harder.

To discourage overwhelming assaults to take out the Brits (what the Germans gain most from) all three carriers will be in position in the channel to hammer units that attack there, together with other bombers.

As for now I start moving the units into their positions, prioritizing reinforcing steps on front-line armies. Carefully for now, need to keep the MPPs ready for that diplo bomb. I also abandon the Saar mines, the germans have moved upgraded infantry to the front, and their overwhelming presence is suppressing the mine anyway.

As for the general plan with the UK.

They have several crucial research categories to prioritize, and a remaining budget of 750 to do it.

Do not research: AT weapons (a grand total of 1 buildable? Not worth it). Naval Warfare (Way too expensive to upgrade given the UKs other needs), Advanced subs (Maybe later, catch-up bonus on the germans may make this useful depending), Spying and intelligence (beyond the first chit currently invested to keep the germans from an early tech advantage I’ll let the US take care of this).

1. Anti submarine warfare (150), Advanced fighters (175).
2. Ground attack weapons (175), Infantry Warfare (125)
3. Industry tech (125)

Aside from that I need an engineer down in North Africa at the earliest opportunity, and 300mpp for diplo. Given the UK's income relative to Frances’ that should coincide in about two turns.

I buy the Engineer, and bank the rest.

The soviets make what could be a fatal mistake considering their abysmal income, and invest in an engineer before infantry tech. The catch up bonus should help later, and given our diplomatic plans they should have enough to invest before Barbarossa.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/11/2020 11:55:51 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 5: They all float down here

The war at sea

The war at sea is in full swing. Probably the most interesting it has ever been, the move/attack/move change has been a huge step for the series, as has the naval cruise option.

Well, I say “interesting” but I also mean “dang dis suuuux”. The particular little fecker marked by a red circle has been hit eight (!) times by destroyers, and have taken three steps of damage while dealing 5 back. That sheeit is whack yo. That is what Churchill said, literally. In that speech, dont you remember? He also tore up the admiralty in a personal meeting with the top echelon, expressing severe -British disappointment- in our high readiness navy's’ inability to destroy a low supply/readiness sub.

He was slightly cheered as the admiralty reported sinking a german destroyer near the coast of denmark that had sortied to attack a french submarine. It might be a trap with other German battleships nearby, but if it is I still have two carriers and more battleships than any sane man can expect at hand. We’ll see who comes out on top. Also redeployed the subs to intercept any battleship strike.

Old Winston took out the black label as news of the destruction around Halifax by the Kriegsmarine soured the day, and offhandedly remarked “Get on figuring out how to fight those phallic monsters. Yesterday. Get out!”

Investments in Anti submarine warfare were made, I’ll have to put a second chit here when I can, these destroyers are dismal.


The Western Front

Skirmishing in france where the germans identified Strasbourg as the critical weak point, surrounded on three hexes by german held land and lacking both the defense bonuses and the high entrenchment of the rest of the maginot line.

I cant but feel that this is a bit of a design mistake, there was (to my knowledge) no such weak-point in the line at strasbourg (although this was one of the two points successfully attacked and crossed after the weakening of the French army by being bypassed). It probably ought to be a fortified town, like Metz, or the city moved a hex backwards for playability.

Gamelin reaches close enough to the front to take command of the frontline corps in question, and careful reinforcement ordered with an eye to MPP income graph to hit the desired 450 mark next turn. Similar care is taken with the British, who carefully reinforce a low strength carrier air-wing to hit the 300 mark at the same time.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/11/2020 12:35:21 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 6: All the pretty boats

The war at sea

The light cruiser that sank the destroyer got hit by several german battleships sortieing and striking it before vanishing back into harbors with mild damage. Thought to bring out the carriers to punish the clear weather ports, but missed the extremely subtle shading of the “storm at sea” sprite. Bluh. Left carriers exposed.

Sank the U-boat i’ve been hunting in return, finally. The German navy left halifax, probably getting low on supply.

The Western Front

Quiet, operation PUMA now in effect! :D

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/12/2020 11:16:42 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 7-9
Unfortunately Iron Ioseph is very, very angry with us. The “Pretend conflict” got a little too real, the way it does when insecure men play with real lives and soldiers. The allied “feint” to protect Finland actually succeeded, and the Soviets failed to gain ground in the winter war. Well, the Finns are happy with us at least. So far operation PUMA has spectacularly failed to produce results (four turns at 25% mumble mutter) and the Soviets were at 0% leaning. Ugh. Cold war in 40 anyone?

Will meanwhile, the rotten cad, is spending diplomacy on spain. He spent a chit or two last turn as well, likely on Finland.

The war at sea

The seas are quiet, Britain is enjoying its’ convoy income in relative peace. Winston is very suspicious, and absolutely sure it’s not just all the black label talking. Germany is probably re-arming its’ U-boats, luckily the fire Mr. Churchill lit under the admiralty (2 chits in anti sub warfare) means rapid progress there.

The fleet has redeployed to cover the northern coast of france. The carriers are upgraded.

All in all our convoy raiding activities around Norway has cost the germans 145mpp so far, and the mines at Saar likely lost them another 60-80 or so. That’s a corps, or a research chit down. Yay us! We’re actually ahead in the convoy raiding game, that’s something.

The Western Front

The expected blow fell early april. And no ****ty weather to punish the Germans either. It seems slightly too easy to invade early in most SC games, the risk of bad weather around april/may isnt large enough to make early aggression the gamble it would have been. Oh well.

The low countries and denmark fell rapidly, and France is most decidedly not ready. Especially since I failed to place both Huntzinger and the British engineer on the turn they arrived (derp derp).

Matters did not get better when I failed to move the carrier upgrading in the Le havre port, meaning the French special forces I had planned to place north of paris disembarked at Calais. ****… well there go them boys.

The French are decently prepared under the circumstances, their armies are in position, the front line reinforced and dug in. I just hope those Paras still can’t drop consecutively (like in the first games) or Paris might fall this turn before the H-arm gets in there.

Montgomery has taken command of the British in France, go monty go!

Edit: Sour postscript, 5 turns, two of them at 30%. Meeeeeh. Stop sleeping Puma. Go!





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/12/2020 4:09:03 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 10-11: The battle of France
I got a single 8% hit on USSR on the 6th turn. Now 25% to hit again, They badly, badly need the readiness so I’m hoping.

The war at sea

All Quiet… except that my Idea of using the carriers to harass and kill German troops on the north coast didnt work at all. Carriers are not good at hitting ground targets, at all. The British navy is getting hit by Tactical bombers, and the fighter wings on the carriers are getting hurt badly.

Raiding is going fine though! I now have an elite step british sub! Very nice.

The Western Front

The Germans have to fight hard for France, well dug in French armies resist fiercely, and the Germans are taking some losses.

So are the British though, as the British line gets overrun and monty himself is hit by dropping paratroopers while trying to board ships from the port of Le Havre. Special forces are also overrun, and Monty and what is left of the BEF is forced to board trains to escape to the west coast.

The French are on their own, and Paris is slowly getting surrounded on all sides. They are putting up a good fight, falling back in an orderly fashion and finding new positions. The Germans will not find Paris easy to take with the Heavy armor positioned there. He might bypass it and take the rest of France though.

Oh well, despite everything it’s taking the Hun a bit to overrun the west, despite the early start. Hopefully that will mean less time for adventures elsewhere.

Postscript: 7 turns total now… come on… come ooooon.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/13/2020 8:44:59 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 12-13: Dark days

Operation PUMA has been a dismal failure. In the new game the diplomatic chits of a defeated nation vanishes. That’s mostly for the good, but in this instance I wish it had been different.

After 8 turns of having 25-30% chance to hit the USSR diplomatically I only got one single hit, and that one almost the lowest possible, 8%. It would not have been at all unreasonable to expect 20-25% extra mobilization as projected, the mean being 12ish% per hit. That is really, really not good.

I also forgot the special forces deployed in Norway for a turn and thus WIll could reinforce Narvik, no chance of taking it.

So many small niggling mistakes… and bad luck. Bleh. That’s 1050MPP down the drain (I invested extra with Britain, hoping to bolster my chances rather than cutting my losses). I doubt I’ll try that again.

The war at sea

This topic will return periodically as interesting developments occur, but for now the seas are quiet. A submarine caught off the coast of canada was brought to half strength and is boxed in at supply 5, we might be able to catch it again.

Britain prepares for operations.

The Western Front

France collapsed at the end of July, prompting the escape of the remainder of the legitimate government at the Fascists installed a puppet. Monty and two corps escaped destruction, barely.

It is a sad day for the Western Allies. Britain stands alone, their efforts largely a failure to date. Churchill makes speeches, shoring up morale and resolve. What else can he do, in times as dark as these?


So what did the battle of France achieve? Very little to nothing it turns out.

The total cost in lives, but we avoid using that term in her majesty’s government and prefer the more “polite” acronym MPP (many poorer people), on part of the allies is this;

France: 5796MPP in units lost.
UK: 2704MPP total, some 1000 in the battle of France.
Poland: 1189 MPP lost.

Total: 9689 MPP.

Germany: 3818 total MPP lost, some 1800 of which in the battles of the Low countries and France.

Germany has spent 4153 MPP just on units to the UK and USSRs 2011 combined. That means the axis have increased their already substantial military advantage considerably by about 2200MPPs worth of units. That is a lot of stuff…

Research is also looking like crap, Germany spent 1375MPP, Britain 725. Mostly just catching up to the already superior germans, who will continue to be well ahead.

Whelp. This is looking like a short one boys. Oh well.

We have managed to sink some 250mpp worth of shipping. The finns might stay out of the war in the east, but considering how fatally unprepared the USSR is going to be that is the small grace.

We’ll start looking at the defense of the east next turn, might as well learn something from the experience.

The Mediterranean

This is likely to be the main theatre of operations for a while. The brits are busy digging fortifications around Alexandria. Italians have been spotted at Mersa Matruh, and O’connor is awaiting the arrival of Montgomery and better infantry weapons before making an attack.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/13/2020 10:25:53 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 14-15: A cavalcade of failure
The British continue to fail at everything they attempt.

They are unsuccessful in attacking Dakkar, fail to sink the submarine off the coast of Canada despite multiple attacks in low supply, and are predictably grounded by rain when presented any opportunity to strike back at Germanys’ Luftwaffe who is savaging carriers and aircraft from France. They have also failed to develop infantry weapons until turn 14, around and about as late as technically possible. Thus limiting opportunity for any counterstrikes in NA, and weakening the Brits in the defense of France.

Ark Royal sunk in port, the RAF vastly outnumbered and outperformed. Another battleship lost at sea to submarines. God, this is bad.

Soviet is looking paper thin.

The failure of PUMA really stings. That sort of serious bad luck always tilts me.

Oh well. Sour grapes Winston, sour grapes. Better wash it down with some more of that Whiskey.

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/25/2020 9:55:54 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 16-30: Bitter failure and ineptitude

Right. So.

I keep mucking everything up in this game it seems. Misclicks of HQ’s leading to out of supply brits in NA, shoddy planning for the USSR, zero luck with diplomacy ever.

These past 15 turns have basically been me sitting around, failing at anything I try my hand at.

U-boats I thought were raiding being in silent mode (Yeah, for ten or so turns. Thats 280mpp extra Will has enjoyed. Sigh), losing malta, NA is in trouble. USSR is largely empty and criminally underdeveloped. I thought I’d have more time to diplo finland before they entered, but no, in the new game they align and enter right away as soon as the Axis declare war. They were at 4% axis after a lucky hit from Will, I even counter invested 3 chits into them to make sure that didn’t happen and they would stay allied. But of course it did. I hadn’t defended that border yet, thinking I had more time. So out of position there as well.

If all of this sounds sour, that’s because it is. Pretty much every conceivable niggling F-up and random chance has gone against me so far. I got pretty tilted over my extremely ****ty luck with the Diplomacy gambit against USSR. Getting just one hit for all of that with the next lowest possible result was a real letdown.

So yeah. I’ve been plodding along, cursing my mistakes. Nothing much to write about, no real humor to write about nothing with either.

Let’s call this period in the game the darkest days. Good riddance.


< Message edited by AshFall -- 7/25/2020 10:12:34 PM >

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/25/2020 10:03:39 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 31: The red bear is savaged
So. We come to the games main event, the big rumble in the East.

Before we go there though, Let’s look at one of just two bright spots during the entire stretch that were the dark days.

The Royal navy has been assembling and upgrading aircraft in preparation for a massive strike at the Regia Marina. I’ve been waiting for the invasion of USSR to kick off, so that Wills fighters and Bombers would be busy there. If he wants to move them to protect the Italian navy, he’ll have to operate them away from the important front at cost and lose turns doing so.

With any luck this will be a hard hit, and might allow me to recapture Malta with a special forces unit I have been building.

NA itself is looking dire after having lost an important position due to that misclicking I mentioned. Well, this may just help it survive. I managed to sneak reinforcements to the shipping point around Africa, so Egypt will receive two more corps shortly. I hope it will be in time.


Let’s hope all of that waiting and planning wasn’t for nothing.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/25/2020 10:19:26 PM   
AshFall

 

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The Northern East Front


So, to the second "bright spot".

The invasion of USSR is well, not late per se, but late for when people usually seem to invade in these games (nevermind it would have been madness to invade in May historically). I think around July or so, just a little later than history. Despite all of my mistakes regarding the USSR, and having absolutely nothing to show for them, that might help them not get completely wrecked. Or well, not as completely wrecked as they would have gotten if Will had invaded in May.

Regardless, it’s looking real empty. H have some forts built, but I need units to put in them.

I did get infantry weapons 1 right in time for the invasion, and I’m upgrading well entrenched infantry in several key positions. Unfortunately, anything I build now won’t arrive until september or so, and that means clear and free advance for the axis. Not good. Oh well, we’ll see if I can hold on or not. It will become clear fairly quickly I think.






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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/25/2020 10:23:20 PM   
AshFall

 

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The Southeast Front

In the Southeast I have some decent defensive lines. Built up fortifications and well entrenched armies. Well, corps. Functionally.

Retreated some of the remaining front defense units. It really worries me how empty the map is. I’ve never seen it this empty of Soviet units in any of these games I think, just a clear stretch of land to drive across all the way to Kiev and Dneptotovsk. And I’ve mostly been building units with that little MPP I have had.

Well, not much to do about that now. I’m hoping supply will slow the Germans down a little, otherwise this will be extremely short.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/26/2020 9:25:45 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 32: Churchill is drunk

The slaughter of the USSR continues apace. Critical investments in Great War level technologies are made by panicked Soviets. The Wehrmacht rolls in over the Ukraine Unopposed.

Also in NA. Bad days.

Royal navy in the Mediterranean scouts all the ports of western italy and Sicily, finding nothing. There goes the surprise…

Was going to load those troops onto Amphibious transports this turn to retake malta.

I forgot to invest in Amphibious warfare.

Sigh.

The best option now I guess is to load americal troops on long range Amphibs, and try to use that to take malta as soon as they enter the war.

Well. No more to say about that. :P

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/26/2020 11:27:38 AM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 33: The Royal navy throws a drunken punch

Mediterranean

Well, the theme continues. The Royal Navy found an Italian battle cruiser. Carriers are proving less effective than we hoped, talking severe damage from a stationer german fighter in return for little damage to the Italians.

Next game I’m definitely investing in Naval warfare for the Brits. Upgrades to ships are much, much cheaper in this version.

The British Also retreat from El alamein. Axis air power in the Region is oppressive, all of our fighters are not enough to ward our troops from constant attacks. Well, I found the option to upgrade fortifications with Anti Air, so at least our units are not suffering as badly as our fighters are.

And our fortifications are deep here at the Helmburg…





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< Message edited by AshFall -- 7/26/2020 12:08:51 PM >

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/26/2020 11:28:13 AM   
AshFall

 

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NorthEast Front

German advance continues unopposed. Both here...

SouthEast Front

… and in the south.

I’m praying for september to arrive, and with it more units. I’ll have to endure 2 more Axis turns before then. I very much hope my long prepared positions will hold them at the river line for a month, allowing those reinforcements time to deploy elsewhere. The entirity of the USSR is empty behind the front. The men know that if they fall, nothing stands between the Invader and the riches of the motherland for now.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/26/2020 12:07:24 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 34: Catastrophy upon catastrophy

**** **** **** ****.

I hate my brain. Hate it sometimes.

"oooh, shiny armor event". Clicks. The second after "wait, what was that? Neutrals might be angry. Oh **** wait, Will just got a lucky super hit on spain, I thought I saw something about 20% progress among the other 50 messages at the start of this turn"

So yeah. I, like a dumbass, chose to get an armor unit. I vaguely noticed will getting super lucky once again with diplomacy and hitting 20% on spain. Barely registered something about neutrals not liking US tanks in Egypt. So yeah. Spain joined axis.

God damnit.

Panicked and invested chits in spain thinking I might prevent it from joining since it "only" had 94%. Nope. Wasted more MPPs with Britain.

****.

Mediterranean

Well. Nothing here, RN sucks. Got a battleship killed for nothing. Whee.

East Front

Clash is about to begin along the entire front.


< Message edited by AshFall -- 7/26/2020 12:09:10 PM >

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 7/26/2020 5:28:49 PM   
Elessar2


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quote:

ORIGINAL: AshFall

Panicked and invested chits in spain thinking I might prevent it from joining since it "only" had 94%. Nope. Wasted more MPPs with Britain.

****.


It IS possible. Tho in my case it was due to an event firing, I had FINALLY gotten Vichy onto my (Axis) side in one game, "Vichy France prepares for war", 95%...then the unstable Vichy government event fires, back down to 85% they go, had to wait 6 more months for them to finally join me for real.

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 4:49:10 PM   
AshFall

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Elessar2


quote:

ORIGINAL: AshFall

Panicked and invested chits in spain thinking I might prevent it from joining since it "only" had 94%. Nope. Wasted more MPPs with Britain.

****.


It IS possible. Tho in my case it was due to an event firing, I had FINALLY gotten Vichy onto my (Axis) side in one game, "Vichy France prepares for war", 95%...then the unstable Vichy government event fires, back down to 85% they go, had to wait 6 more months for them to finally join me for real.



Right, good to know! :)

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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 4:50:34 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 35-47: The pain continues
Title pretty much says it all.

NorthEast Front

Germans slaughter and walk their way north and east with no resistance.

SouthEast Front

Germans slaughter and walk their way south and east with no resistance.

Pictures show where they end up before they have to lift their weapons in anger.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 4:52:40 PM   
AshFall

 

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Mediterranean

Germans and Italians slaughter and walk their way east through resistance that does little. Italy loses some ships, Britain loses that many and more.

Carriers turn out to be useless against fighters and medium bombers, a major raid using all available airpower and carriers fail to kill even a single German or italian fighter or bomber unit, despite concentrated attacks (happened the turn after this picture was taken)




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 4:58:19 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 49: XXX

Bad weather finally turns up something of a reprieve for the desperate soviets.

NorthEast Front

Germans reach Leningrad and the finns kill Soviet troops off the northernmost front. The advance stops before Smolensk.

SouthEast Front

Dneprotovsk and Kiev and surrounded and overrun.

Mediterranean

Brits are getting pushed back, and back… and back. Germans take a rare loss in a tank unit. The massed air raid to try and kill an aircraft fails this turn, the follow up kills a carrier.

Nothing is coming up allies unfortunately.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 7:23:56 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 50: New Plans

The entire game so far has been a total **** show. Not only have I made disastrous decisions, missing both opportunities and important messages and circumstance, I’ve also been sickeningly unlucky, paired with some good luck on Wills part particularly in the diplomacy department. The entry of Spain on top of everything else may very well be a death blow to the campaign.

This turn followed suit in terms of my own never ending supply of incompetence. I hadn’t even realized Iraq was actually in the war, and have thus completely failed to move the unit stationed there. I think it’s been like that for 20 odd turns or so. The message was missed in the slew of other information, and a country on war footing is graphically indistinguishable from a neutral one (barring clicking on cities and reading the “100% axis leaning”). So yeah. That sucks.

In general I find the UI and message prompting in this new game the worst aspect of it, among many other interesting improvements. It’s an overall downgrade where everything is noticeably harder to follow and distinguish. I -never- made these kinds of mistakes in the old games, even as a complete newbie.

As of right now the game looks well and truly lost due to everything compounded. I’ll play on through 42 and see if it’s worth continuing. But, I’ll make a serious attempt until then.

Well then. Let’s see if we can change the tune of this AAR a little bit.

NorthEast Front

The Axis are pressing in on all sides at leningrad. With the Soviets losing the winter war and their extremely low income they have limited forces at hand. The only thing keeping the Axis now is the weather. Leningrad is going to fall quickly in the spring, and maybe even before then.

Seeing as Vorzilov is at risk of being cut off inside the pocket I moved him out this turn, and spotting a paratrooper near Leningrad I reinforced Volkhov and Novgorod.

Another issue is that the finns are advancing way north, having cut off Murmansk and closing in. I failed to place defenses here, and one of Wills corps slaughtered the first Garrison before I could react. Bad times.

SouthEast Front

In the south the Germans have started digging in near Kursk, Dneptotovsk fell last turn, and the last Army is cowering in its’ fortifications.

With the low readiness and around the Axis lines, as well as widespread damage on display here, I sense a possible opportunity. It’s december, and the Russian winter event is bound to start kicking in soon. I really should have prepared this much sooner, but my brain has been on full tilt, let’s try to fix that.

Unfortunately, perhaps on purpose, Will has declined to advance far enough to trigger the Siberians early, that leaves me with few offensive units to work wit, and few HQs as well. Regardless, I am assembling a small strike force around Orel, perhaps to continue south before reinforcing. I need to do some kind of damage following the winter effects to blunt the coming summer offensive of 42.





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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/3/2020 7:24:25 PM   
AshFall

 

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Mediterranean

The med is just incredibly ****. And more or less lost, with Gibraltar and Malta in axis hands. I forgot that Gibraltar is now closed and loaded some special forces onto long range Amphibs for Malta, I guess they will go to Egypt instead where they are going to be much needed.

The RAF is getting it’s ass handed to it by the Axis powers, no two ways about it. Seems to be a combination of air tech, morale and leadership. Ah well. I’ll have to play that one much better next time around.

I’m desperately building fortifications to slow the Axis down as much as possible, but egypt is doomed. There isnt too much I can do about it. I may need to evactuate the Royal navy sooner rather than later to avoid it becoming trapped and easy prey.

The British are hurting on all fronts, and their economy is completely ****.

To that end I increased US convoys to the max, and discontinued convoys to the USSR entirely. The UK needs to focus on the UK for the moment, especially getting some critical research done that it just hasnt been able to, industry among many other things.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/5/2020 2:26:36 PM   
AshFall

 

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Turn 50-51

I'm going to be Laconic from here on out, the game is over, just hanging on to judge some effects and unit interactions, and learn what I can before I throw in the towel and abandon this mess.

Germans have started moving again, and I got no messages about Soviet winter hitting the Axis. That means I didnt know when to attack, not that I would have been able to regardless since I Was way too slow and inefficient at setting up the thing. In the old games, there was always message prompts telling you when winter struck.

Ah well. Time to fall back and die.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/5/2020 2:27:19 PM   
AshFall

 

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RN left the med, Luftwaffe is too powerful and we risk being cut off. Germans comissioned carriers and the fleet is needed at home. Tough luck Brits.




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RE: AshFall: Ash vs Will "Newbies once more" ... - 8/6/2020 4:23:13 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: AshFall
In the old games, there was always message prompts telling you when winter struck.


This suggests that the winter event hasn't struck yet, as the settings for this and previous games are the same in terms of showing a message when it happens.

There's a 75% chance per winter turn of it happening once the USSR has joined the Allies, though it does of course only happen the once.

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