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Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben

 
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Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/28/2021 5:32:47 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
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This is a republication of an AAR which was originally published on TDG in 2015 (now lost), to coincide with the release of Fall Grau v2.27 (you can get it here). I'm posting it here to familiarise people with the scenario, but this match was played in TOAW III.

This was a mirror match after I had just played the Axis and Jeremy the Allies. Jeremy was the original designer of the scenario at 50km/hex and I revised it at 25km/hex, so this is a designer vs. designer match. All screenshots will depend on opening the .PBL files I have saved in my email (thank God I use easy passwords for TOAW) and so will be from the Allied point of view at the start of the turn.

Turn 1:
[Sorry this is a bit long- they get shorter]

Initial German landings
Like the last match, the opening here is a bit unusual. Jeremy's used almost all of his airborne might to storm Mobile on turn one. This port's not normally very approachable due to the placement of the anchorages, and indeed his infantry is still a long way from the port, but four divisions of paratroops is ample to seize it on turn one. This does mean that he's not far from the shore, as no paratroops have dropped ahead of the main landing, but the South is so short of Allied troops that a vigorous response just isn't possible. Inevitably, Jeremy will be able to open up a broad front here quite quickly.

In addition to this, Jeremy's attempted a landing at Quebec. This is an unusual target as it's at the extreme limit of Axis sealift, is a nasty combination of being hard to expand from yet close to the heartland of the initial on-map Allied force. His landing here is a bit anemic- 22. Luftlande to cut the city off from supply and six infantry divisions, two thirds of which are on the wrong side of the St. Lawrence. I'd like to think I can throw him into the sea here. I think the purpose of this landing is similar to mine at Boston in the last match- a diversion and an opportunity for me to blunder.

Jeremy's third landing is at Tampico with just two divisions, presumably to be reinforced on another turn. I'm slightly concerned as a designer that this is almost a gimme- take Tampico and Mexico City will follow by turn 10. I don't like no-brainers in a scenario like Fall Grau and this is something to come on to in future. Maybe Mexico's balance of regular and guerrilla forces ought to be re-assessed.

Initial Allied response

So that's what Jeremy did, what do I do? Well I contend that the secret to winning Fall Grau as the Allies is to avoid fighting the Axis- especially avoid fighting them where they're strong and in open ground. This of course has to be balanced with slowing them down, but slowing them should be done with delaying actions, not massive set-piece battles.

The instinct is to rush everything to Quebec. But there is little available locally in the South and reinforcements for this front have to come from somewhere- in particular, I don't want to let Jeremy too quickly into the relatively open country of Georgia and the Carolinas, and the ports along the long Atlantic seaboard need covering. Forces from New York wind up heading south to cover the coast of Maryland, and most of the rest goes to shield Massachusetts.

What does go South is almost everything in the Midwest, up to and including Milwaukee, plus forces from the west as far afield as Omaha. Next turn and the turn after I'll be painfully weak- and if Jeremy chooses to make a secondary landing at Savannah there's not a lot I can do about it- but thereafter I should have some options. Thing to do will be to keep my strength intact rather than just sacrificing my reinforcements every turn.

Mexico is more of a problem. This front will get nothing for the time being, but I must prevent Jeremy bloodlessly reaching the Plains. I achieved great success with small armoured forces in highly mobile fighting around Monterrey two matches ago, but against a competent player history does not repeat itself- I must expect Jeremy to behave differently.

I spend quite a bit of time making sure that supply doesn't "leak" out of Jeremy's existing supply points to his troops landed without supply at Tampico and Quebec, and also leave him without supply at Pensacola for what it's worth. This leaves me with an extremely loose bag around the landing at Mobile, which will be RBC'd out of the way on the Axis turn. The best part of it is that I am able to extract 9th Armor from the stack that retreated out from Mobile.

Mexico makes do with what it has. I intend to erect a screen of troops in the rough ground around Mexico City, which will be given time to entrench by delaying forces in the pass through the mountains to the north- but delay is all that these troops can hope to do if Jeremy serious reinforces this front.

At Quebec I have a tempting option. Adjacent to the city he has three divisions, with the other four linked by a hex held only by half of 22. Luftlande. If I can throw the brigade out of this hex, he'll have a hell of a time assaulting the city next turn. It's a gamble, but worth it. I throw the city's mobile defenders into this assault, plus the full might of the RCAF, whilst the USAAF for its part hammers the other brigade of 22. Luftlande over to the west.

The attack out of Quebec is a complete success; the Luftlande Brigade promptly evaporates, I advance, destroy the bridge, then withdraw back into the city to entrench. The USAAF does some damage to 22. Luftlande, but not enough to be worth the loss of supply and readiness, and so for round two these withdraw to the South.

So after one turn- looking good. It's a genuine possibility that I can stop Jeremy getting the port at Quebec. He'll have to reinforce heavily if he wants it- and then there goes his fast start out of Mexico. Actually as him, I'd almost be inclined to give up on it, let me spend four turns destroying these six divisions with a good dozen of mine. Whatever happens, I don't intend to rest on my laurels; there will be a hard battle ahead in the South and West.

The initial German landing at Mobile - only two divisions are in range to respond




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by golden delicious -- 1/28/2021 5:36:31 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."
Post #: 1
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/28/2021 5:44:00 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
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From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
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Turn 2:

Well Jeremy got Quebec- but not Tampico. I suppose I should count my blessings. Well, with matters at Quebec not as pleasant as I had hoped, the question becomes one of how far forward do I try to screen the city? Happily Jeremy let slip that he doesn't have mechanised units available here so I know he's not going to come storming out of the port at breakneck speed. I'm inclined to view Maine and the Maritimes as indefensible; this allows me to put together a reasonably short, strong line between Portland and Montreal, then tail off in the north. Jeremy will inevitably outfight and outflank me in the Canadian north, but I'm happy for him to do so.

With this in mind, I pull out the two Polish divisions which I set to screening Nova Scotia beaches last turn. Unfortunately this addition doesn't give me enough to build the line I need, and as such the three US Armoured divisions that I have go up ahead of the proposed line to fight a delaying action north of Sherbrooke; he shouldn't be able to engage me heavily here next turn, and if he can only bring light forces forward I should be able to deliver a stinging counterattack.

Down in the South my shortage of units is a real problem. It'll be here that Jeremy has his mechanised units and he's going to go roaring up any roads that I don't block. With the five divisions I have to hand I draw another very wide, loose bag around the landing. However anywhere that Jeremy wants to go, he's going to go- I won't have a say in the matter. Next turn another five divisions come in on the action, and I should start to be able to put up some serious opposition at selected points.

Mexico is a matter of ringing the Axis beachhead at Tampico with ZOCs so that these units (4 divisions and some bits) remain out of supply. Doing so does somewhat compromise my defence of the mountain passes, but I hope Jeremy won't be at these positions until turn 4, and I've railed up another divisions from northwest Mexico to reinforce this gap.

A much less complex turn than last, with most of my big decisions made and no attacks.

Mexican troops rush to block the road to Mexico City as the Tampico garrison holds out for one more turn






Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 2
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/30/2021 1:53:18 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
Status: offline
Turn 3:
In Quebec Jeremy's working on a shoestring. Two brigades have come up to face me north of Sherbrooke, so my armour here will counterattack. I swing one division around to cut off the lead brigade and attack with the other two. I hope to repeat with the second brigade if I get the rounds.

I'm less able to be bullish about the South. Jeremy's running amok and I really don't have the forces to oppose him here. But at the same time it's plain he can't advance everywhere at once; on the far eastern flank I will push back with two armoured divisions south of Dothan, whilst in the north and west I'm starting to develop some multi-division defensive positions, one between Jackson and Columbus, another in front of Montgomery.

In Mexico, the Axis largely contented themselves with taking Tampico. This gives me another turn to prepare the mountain passes (I actually have a nice little "F" here, too bad it's a brigade), though it looks like Jeremy may go around. This is fine, too, as that will take him several turns.

Both my counterattacks were a complete success, each resulting in the destruction of two German infantry brigades, for a total of four, without significantly compromising my defensive dispositions. More significant than the material losses, should be the salutary effect this will have on Jeremy's willingness to advance into open space with light forces. If I'm lucky, Jeremy will spend his turn four consolidating in both of the affected sectors. I doubt I'll be lucky.

Allied counterattacks destroy overextended German units on the edge of the Quebec perimeter




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 3
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/30/2021 2:20:09 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
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Turn 4:
Well Quebec is all hunky-dory. There is indeed no further push out towards Sherbrooke, which suggests Jeremy has no forces for such an advance. Increasingly I'm convinced that this front is his attempt to repeat the diversion I made at Boston, whilst Mobile is his main offensive. A bit of probing shows he has almost nothing on the east bank of the St. Lawrence. Tempting as it is to continue my counterattack onwards, my armour really is in no fit state to continue, and instead will rest this turn.

Down South, I continue to have a real problem. The most alarming thing is that it looks like Jeremy may rather effortlessly cross the Mississippi next turn; I don't really have the strength to block such a crossing. There again- he will eventually get to the West from Mexico anyway. I'm able to string together three loose defensive positions between Montgomery and Jackson, but there's a yawning hole right in the middle near Selma. I'm also totally unable to even screen the super river crossings at Baton Rouge.

In Mexico, Jeremy more or less is going around the mountain passes- and this is more or less slowing him down. I rather cheaply put his lead division - 233. Panzergrenadier- out of supply here. He should be through the hills next turn after a fashion, but my second defensive position in a broad arc north of Mexico City is nearing completion, and it should take him some time to get through to the city. I can't resist looking back to our last match, where I started my assault on Mexico City on turn 5. Admittedly, I did commit much larger forces here, too.

Allied forces struggle to contain the rapidly expanding Axis landing on the Gulf Coast





Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 4
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/31/2021 5:07:54 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
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Turn 5:
It's a good thing I didn't try to hold the initiative in Canada- Jeremy's mechanised forces have arrived here in strength this turn. I'm able to continue a (reasonably) dignified withdrawal. If matters go to plan here, should be able to oppose him strongly without any further reinforcements. However I think I will still reinforce at some point so that I can pull my armour off the line.

That's not true of the South. There, by cutting the bridge at Montgomery I've blundered and left several divisions out of supply. I could do without these kinds of errors frankly. Generally though I'm withdrawing without being totally overwhelmed, but a) SS Totenkopf has just reached a decidedly sketchy line I'm not ready to abandon in North Mississippi, b) I still have nothing blocking a Mississippi crossing and c) I've essentially nothing blocking an advance into Georgia. I send a cavalry division to western Louisiana for problem b) and two infantry divisions to the vicinity of Birmingham where they can react to whatever happens elsewhere.

In Mexico Jeremy is over the mountains into the plain around Mexico City. He's dislodged one of the three divisions of my closer screen around the city and advanced 233. Panzergrenadier adjacent to a second. I cut this off from supply again. He'll find that he can't get Mexico City this cheaply without spending an age clearing a path for supply. Further north, he's about six hexes from Monterrey. I used some Mexican troops to probe here; these advancing units are just individual South American divisions. I'll let them digest the Mexicans and then in a few turns they should be ready to be destroyed by my fully-armed and operational US armoured divisions that I now have resting in the city.

German troops find progress difficult as they approach Mexico City




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by golden delicious -- 1/31/2021 5:17:48 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 5
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 1/31/2021 5:20:45 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
Status: offline
Turn 6:
Ugh. Jeremy has buggered my northeastern front. He came over the St. Lawrence- which frankly I should have been ready for- and cut off the two divisions I had blocking the road to Montreal from the north. He also- less critically- smashed a hole in the position I had east of the city. I'm going to have to resign myself to falling back on Lake Ontario at some point, albeit not just yet. I start by fixing the position east of Montreal. This is not ideal but it's still fairly strong and now has two nice "F"s blocking further advance this side of the river. On the other bank, I concentrate on trying to get 4th Canadian Armoured division out, while building a mini delaying position in front of Montreal with brigades cobbled together from elsewhere.

Over on the other side of Lake Champlain things are good; Jeremy attacked here but not effectively. My line's not rock solid but it's in good terrain and Jeremy doesn't have the strength here- yet- to attack in force.

The South is... remarkably good. New Orleans is doomed, which was inevitable, though I would have liked it to be in supply a turn or two more, but I may yet extract the two regular army regiments which were blocking anchorages here, and Jeremy would have been much better served by roaring across the unguarded crossings at Baton Rouge- which this turn cease to be unguarded. Further north, incredibly, SS Totenkopf just sat and dug in opposite my astonished, unready infantry brigades. These all get their happy little "F"s this turn- and suddenly I have the beginnings of a good line between the Mississippi and Birmingham. The problem is that east of there I have almost nothing. I'm trying to build up a small concentration west of Columbus, GA, where this turn I cut off 90. Afrika Division, but between there and the coast I have all of one brigade.

Mexico is good, too. Jeremy's still not cleared the mountain road, and has now settled down to reducing the fortified division I have north of Mexico City. He's got a division adjacent to the city itself, but I can't see him assaulting it until at least turn 8. I've moved two further divisions out of Guadalajara into position behind the city, and emplaced some artillery with them. Jeremy will need to take out these positions (in hills) if he wants the city itself to be a walkover; if he fails to do so, then any retreating Reserve divisions will survive rather than evaporating. In the north, Jeremy has contented himself with devouring the two brigades I sent at him last turn. He'll reach Monterrey next turn, at which point I'll hammer him with my armour. Notably he's also reached Aguascalientes further to the southwest, but fortunately the rest of Mexico is quite irrelevant.

Rail transport is a dilemma this turn. I do need to close the gap in Georgia eventually, but the situation in Canada demands a response. I send the two uncommitted Commonwealth infantry divisions to the New York border. They'll fortify this position, blocking the upper St. Lawrence. Jeremy can have Ontario as far as I'm concerned, as it goes nowhere (I will of course make a fighting withdrawal through this country), but he mustn't be allowed to get into the Northeastern United States. Should I have another, new, crisis next turn of course, these two divisions may get sucked in, but for now this is the plan. This still leaves me enough rail lift to put four American divisions into the Birmingham-Atlanta area, which should be able to stop any lurching advances by Jeremy- I'm comfortable if he wants to keep crawling- or else respond to a major assault on my positions west of Birmingham.

A reasonable turn all things considered. I was able to fight my way out of the trap north of Montreal (unfortunately without my artillery), killing a German infantry brigade in the process, and am I think out of Jeremy's reach with these units this turn. Admittedly this withdrawal came at the cost of my nice little position I had built up along the Bayonne River, but this position was compromised in any case by the breach made this turn, and the two divisions in it better used elsewhere. I'll need to keep delaying Jeremy on this northern route, but I don't think it will be difficult.

Two things worth noting which I find comforting;
1) Jeremy's brought over a LOT of engineers. There's ten brigades that I can see, and presumably more I can't. Hopefully he's out and will find they're all committed when he needs them.
2) His airborne troops are still on the front. He has four and a half divisions intact, which is really bad news, but I see three full divisions on the line, which means they're not about to spring up somewhere in my rear.

These things are great points on their own, and together they suggest a third- Jeremy feels desperately short of pieces. If that's the case, he's going to be loath to do exciting things like lunging off into Georgia with unsupported mechanised divisions, or sending two divisions probing over some unguarded stretch of the Mississippi.

1. SS Division Liebstandarte and 8. SS Florian Geyer cross the St. Lawrence, trapping Canadian 1st Infantry and 4th Armoured Divisions




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 6
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/2/2021 5:50:56 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
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Turn 7:
I turned out to be wrong about being out of Jeremy's grasp with the two divisions extracted from the lower St. Lawrence. These guys are trapped and doomed, but at least his armour spend the turn achieving this, rather than compromising things in a broader sense. He will no doubt roar ahead here next turn as I have nothing west of Montreal- but there's nothing to gain by doing so. Over in Maine, I've been forced out of one hex of my line, but otherwise this position is starting to look pretty strong, with some Fs appearing. Most of Jeremy's strength is in Canada; he only has four divisions and some odd bits in this area.

The South is pretty good, too. However I don't think this will last as Jeremy's now well engaged with my main line in Mississippi-Alabama. For now, the balance of forces and the strength of my position favours entrenching and letting his attack come, but I don't think I can hold on this line for more than a turn or two. Further East, Jeremy's still at a crawl. He has a couple of mechanised units out here, but they don't seem to be romping off into the open country. For now, I'll concentrate on a) reinforcing weak points in the main line and b) extending it so that some cover is afforded to the eastern flank and by extension Atlanta.

Mexico is moving to its inevitable sad end- but slowly. The forces which Jeremy has in the area have largely exhausted themselves clearing my positions in front of the city itself, and still he's not in a position to begin attacking it. Perhaps on turn 9, but the defenders have gained so much supply in the interim that it'll be a bloody business- at least I hope so. At Monterrey, the German cavalry division has appeared. This gives me a bit of pause, as although it's not a potent unit they are real troops; I can't just roll right over them with the limited armour I have to hand. Further, my armour still isn't fully rested after its journey from the southwestern states. Yet further delay could allow Jeremy time to flank me on both sides. I throw these guys in to attack the division.

Reinforcements are split again this turn; 3 divisions go to Ottawa to respond to whatever Jeremy does here next turn, whereas the other five go sit behind the Mississippi-Alabama front ready to either reinforce or extend.

My attack in Mexico goes OK; I rout the German cavalry. But more importantly I reveal the follow on force; two more German divisions, one of them armoured. This is a bigger game than I was in for, and I respond by pulling my armour way back north of Monterrey, hopefully out of reach of the impending encirclement here. At some point I'm going to have to start reinforcing here- probably as early as next turn; two armoured divisions are really not sufficient for this job. I'm hoping Jeremy will spend a couple of turns digesting Monterrey before he moves on up, but that may be optimistic. In any case, it's clear that we're going to be fighting in Texas earlier than I thought.

Strategy Overview

This brings us to the question: how do I want this match to play out, strategically? Jeremy's taken a fairly aggressive sealift option; -10 supply and -20% replacements. This means that he's aiming to defeat me in the first 20-30 turns of the match. This fits in well with my overall strategy so far of avoiding major fighting insofar as possible, but I can't withdraw forever.

In the Northeast, I'd like to keep Jeremy out of the important bits of the US. He's not aiming for them at the moment but he will, and it's actually pretty important. Hence my spending time fortifying the Upper St. Lawrence when he's nowhere near it yet. I'll want this line to be strong and backed with reserves, but I don't want it to suck up too many troops that should be fighting elsewhere. Really, the key to this will be to convince Jeremy that he needs to send fifty divisions to Winnipeg, but achieving that may not be possible.

In the South, I clearly am not in a position to hold everything from the mouth of the Mississippi to the Atlantic. It's my intention to largely ignore the Mississippi flank; Jeremy is going to get into Texas from Mexico anyway. I think he fully realises this, hence he's made no effort to force a crossing yet. I expect to be pushed out of my current positions shortly, but there's a lot of good defensive terrain between them and the critical Midwest which I should be able to delay Jeremy over. The coastal states of the Southeast will be more difficult to defend, and I fully expect to be forced to bend back my line all the way to Washington D.C.

I'll fight as little as I can in the West and aim to have Jeremy send large forces there. Where possible, I'll make local, stinging counterattacks to keep this advance to a crawl. If I win the match, it'll be because I have preserved my army whilst staging a strong fighting retreat through difficult ground, whilst Jeremy diverts ever larger portions of his force to the Canadian and Southwestern fronts.

While I'm on it, I'll talk replacements. I've lost only two cities- Quebec and Mobile- making the level 81%. New Orleans will be gone next turn or, if Jeremy really can't find the infantry for it, the turn after. That makes 73%. Some time in the range 10-15 Jeremy will then get Montreal, Mexico City and Monterrey. With the turn 10 boost that puts me on 71% replacements, which doesn't fill me with joy but it doesn't fill me with dread either. After that there's a host of cities I expect to lose in no particular order. Toronto, Acayucan, San Antonio, Birmingham and Atlanta have all been written off in my head. If I still have some of the above by turn 20 then things are going very well.

Allied positions begin to take shape in Mississippi and Alabama




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 7
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/2/2021 5:57:01 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
Status: offline
Turn 8:
Jeremy's swamped Montreal on either side. The city's his but the thing that bothers me is that my position west of Lake Champlain is not at all ready. I need to get him to spend a few turns digesting his meal so that I can fortify and turn him aside to the Niagara Peninsula. Further east, Jeremy's committed another three divisions to the offensive, all mechanised, and this has allowed him to push me back near Portland. I'll need to close the gap between there and the sea this turn or this line is compromised, and there isn't another position this good. I string something rough together here but if Jeremy has more reinforcements heading to the line here next turn it'll be blown apart. Hence I sent two infantry divisions to the line here this turn, and one infantry and two armoured divisions to the western half of the line. Remind me to send something to block Buffalo and Detroit, and to screen Toronto... Actually I have two reconstituted brigades in the area which will begin work on these positions.

The South remains pretty quiet. Jeremy's made more of an effort to test the Mississippi crossings this turn. I'm not certain I'm ready for him to blast effortlessly across the river, which I see he can do at Fayette without even really having to think about it. In another five turns this would be fine, as by then he will be in Texas anyway, but for now I'll save effort by keeping him on the far side of the river. I send a brigade down to Fayette to force him to at least attack to get over the river. On the main line, Jeremy has as yet made no moves. I guess I have too many "F"s for his money and he keeps testing the flanks, where I do in fact have gaps. My favourite trick here is to leave the flank he's found in place- then draw a much stronger line just behind it. That way Jeremy spends his turn blasting through what is in fact a screen, to find my real line entrenching at the end of his reach. On the eastern flank, I've now got a good line as far as Macon.

Mexico is unchanged. Jeremy has yet to start his assault on Mexico city, where my artillery positions are now complete. He still doesn't look like he's going to take it any time soon, as his units near the city are exhausted, divided or both. At Monterrey, Jeremy contented himself with moving up to the city and hasn't attacked there, either, though I can hardly expect to still hold this place next turn. My two US armoured divisions are pretty much helpless to help with this one, and must just withdraw back again to avoid being cut off.

So, I think I should have sent more to the northeast sooner. Looking at the board, I'd say I have as much if not more strength in the South than Jeremy, and that means that Jeremy has WAY more strength than I do in the northeast. I'll try to counterbalance this as much as I can in the coming turns, but if my front in New England and upstate New York collapses before then, that won't be much consolation.

German offensives threaten to overwhelm the Allies in Quebec and New England




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 8
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/5/2021 5:31:59 PM   
golden delicious


Posts: 5349
Joined: 9/5/2000
From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
Status: offline
Turn 9:
Jeremy hasn't tried my positions in upstate New York, for which I am grateful. He has however smashed the division I had blocking the route past Ottawa and seriously disrupted my positions in Maine. The reinforcements I sent to this sector last turn are able to block the most egregious breaches, but Jeremy's really strong here. The high sealift option he picked has allowed him to bring forward the arrival of his mechanised divisions; just that I can see on the map, he has 17 mechanised divisions. Doubtless there are others moving up to the line that I can't see. Anyway, this front receives three more infantry divisions, plus a generous dollop of artillery, as reinforcements this turn; the armour I sent last turn remains in reserve for now.

In the South, Jeremy's pressing my flanks on both sides. This feels uncomfortably like the situation in Kansas in the last match. But he hasn't turned these flanks yet. The line's strong and although Jeremy doesn't have a huge force here, that force is idle (though I note three divisions of paratroops have pulled back). The real issue is that the line is so brittle. It's all brigades, and I've barely anything in the way of a reserve. Moreover I've nothing but gap between Macon and Savannah, which I do not have the forces to close. I need a mobile force here to be able to counterattack Jeremy's probes until such a time as I need to abandon this position anyway. I bring in one armoured division by rail to this area this turn, extract another from the line and a brigade off the coast to give me the beginnings of such a force.

In Mexico, Jeremy's sealed off the capital but made no moves to attack it. If he wants it, he'll have to bring up a corps of fresh infantry for the task. Perhaps he doesn't realise I have a supply point here? It's getting stronger the longer he waits. Something similar has happened at Monterrey, though there of course there's no supply point. At least here I think Jeremy's revealed the extent of his strength; a hotch-potch of five divisions, albeit one of them a fresh panzer division. I'll have to deal with this at some point, though at the moment Jeremy seems to be behaving quite cautiously here. He knows I have SOME armour, and he knows what I can do with a small mechanised force, but he doesn't realise just how small it is. I suppose the place to fight him will be around San Antonio.

The rewards of my strategy of avoiding a major battle are starting to show this turn: I receive four and a half divisions of reconstitutes. This should mean I'm swimming in rail reinforcements for some considerable time. Unfortunately half of them seem to come in at Los Angeles, which is actually out of rail movement range of the northeast.

I make one attack; a Canadian division appeared in Montreal and I gave it a shot at blasting its way back to the lines through Jeremy's encircling troops. They made a bit of an impression on a neighbouring engineer brigade, but after that I decided on reflection to just let it serve as an extra blocker to prevent Jeremy rolling over Montreal too quickly; he is assaulting it and this should slow him down a little.

1st and 8th Armor watch helplessly as Axis troops reduce Monterrey




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 9
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/5/2021 5:40:34 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 10:

The Northeast
So much for rock-solid upstate New York. Jeremy blasted right through here. It's actually not a total disaster as his lead division managed to cut itself off and I may be able to kill it, but he put a goodly number of my units out of supply and has compromised the stronger form of this position entirely. To add to this, he also tore things up in Maine. I'd like to counterattack here, too, but I can't do both and I have a real opportunity to defend a bottleneck over in New York.

I pull together an insufficient new line in Maine [sic - this is actually New Hampshire], abandoning what was left of the old position on the shores of Lake Champlain. This does allow me to pull 5th Canadian Armoured division into reserve, which is good, as the British and Polish armoured divisions I had in reserve previously slam into 4. Panzer. If this goes to plan, I should destroy this division AND have a shot at putting this front back together.

The South

The South continues to see Jeremy slipping around my flanks. He absolutely mauled my western flank just north of Clarksdale, Mississippi, but thankfully I didn't lose any pieces as I have nothing new to give to this line unless I can settle things in the Northeast. I continue to refuse the flank south of Memphis, putting battered and beaten divisions back together into a new line, making the most of the thick woods in this part of northern Mississippi. Jeremy may tear this whole edifice down on his turn; if he does so I'll need to pull the whole line back to the far side of the Tennessee.

On the other end of the line, Jeremy has scattered bits and pieces stretching my line out to the East. Here, I counterattack hard with the forces to hand. Some scraps of infantry put his lead brigade out of supply, whilst the armour I amassed last turn blasts aside another brigade and will take a stab at wiping out 90. Afrika Division later in the turn.

Mexico is Mexico. The reserve divisions in the capital are up to 57% supply, although Jeremy HAS started his assault on the adjoining hexes now. He may be able to take the city by turn 12 or 13. Further north, Jeremy's finished digesting Monterrey. This turn and this turn only my replacements are a satisfactory 109%, next turn between the two Mont____s, I'll be down to 88%, then promptly to 71% when Jeremy finally gets around to reducing Mexico City.

The northeast gets all the reinforcements this turn. My armour- unwieldy at sometimes over 8,000 rail lift a division- is proving inconvenient for rapid deployment, and as such I wind up sending half the 1st National Guard Army this turn, which isn't quite as ready as I would like. I think I would have done well to send the armour from Southern California by road to Texas, but that ship has sailed now.

Countermoves

A satisfying bit of action in western Quebec; I had held 3rd British Armour in reserve at Malartic, where it was joined by a British brigade which survived the collapse on the lower St. Lawrence. This turn, they were found by Littorio and an Italian cavalry division. I promptly attacked Littorio and it's now a single battered fragment. Jeremy may think twice about sending an Italian to do a German's job next time. My other counterattacks go well too- though things were looking a bit dicey for a minute there. 4. Panzer and 90. Afrika are stricken from the German OOB, and I even get one last round in which to put my bombers back on combat support.

Nevertheless I expect the unrelenting pressure to continue next turn; if I can keep Jeremy making a general breakthrough in the northeast for the time being I can make him bleed a lot, but I'm not convinced this is the case. He still has a lot of mechanised divisions in good condition up here which are poised to make my life difficult. He's also about to discover I've got nothing screening the Niagara peninsula; I'll be bringing up reconstituted 14th Armor and Canadian 4th Armour for this next turn, though they're not exactly fresh and ready.

The Commonwealth armoured reserve smashes 4. Panzer




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 10
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/7/2021 1:55:53 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 11:
A continued vigorous offensive from Jeremy in the northeast. He surges past the remains of the old lines on both sides of Lake Champlain. Three factors- the difficult terrain, the shortage of infantry in Jeremy's force and the large number of divisions I have moved in from reserve this turn, motivate me to meet him head on with fresh forces. He will chew through them, but it will be disproportionately costly.

In the south, the western flank of my position really is compromised here; four mechanised divisions are round the bend and this stretch of the line is in ruins. As such, the whole position is going to have to go. I disengage quite cleanly in Mississippi, the question is whether I should pull back the whole of the line this turn, or do it by stages? I decide to go for the latter; pulling back a short line to the Tennessee to shield Birmingham for one more turn. This releases enough troops to shield Memphis for the time being whilst covering my flank in Alabama, with several units disbanding a la Jeremy to avoid being isolated [disbanding units in contact with the enemy was trialled during testing and is encouraged in this scenario to reflect troops breaking out of encirclements in smaller groups].

The other flank is more of a question. Here, for the first time Jeremy's brought in some real troops, in the shape of SS Totenkopf. The odds and ends with which I've been stringing this front together so far won't stand up to these guys, but as above I'm not quite ready to abandon this bit of the line yet. I pull the armoured reserve formed the turn before last back to Athens, Georgia and refuse my line past Macon; this limits my exposure whilst giving me plenty of scope to strike back should Jeremy do anything he might regret.

Mexico City is STILL mine. Jeremy's diligently reducing the adjoining hexes with their artillery before starting on the city. It should be quite a bloodbath for him when he attacks it. He's made no move out from Monterrey- and why should he, as he is poised to cross the Mississippi around Baton Rouge. There, he's finally brought up some real, fresh German infantry, which is unfortunately not something I can really stand against. However, in general Jeremy is to be encouraged to cross here as it doesn't go anywhere he can't get from Mexico, whereas a crossing up at Memphis would be rather distressing- for that reason, I send a division that way this turn. Near everything else goes to the northeast.

I used my Commonwealth armour to counterattack again in upstate New York, this time destroying 16, Panzergrenadier. I also tried to push him back on the coast near Portland, but with the USAAF in reorganisation the American troops here had a hard time making progress.

Axis flanking moves in the south turn the Allied positions around Birmingham and Atlanta into a broad salient




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 11
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/7/2021 2:19:09 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 12:
Not too bad a turn from Jeremy- as far as it goes. The worst of it is that Jeremy surged forward with two SS divisions, putting my two Commonwealth armoured divisions out of supply, but not cutting them off entirely. This is a dilemma, as I could perhaps counterattack again, aiming to cut off and destroy SS Liebstandarte. However these guys are really exhausted now and the linking division is SS Florian Geyer, which is not a trivial opponent. I might spend the whole turn banging my head against them. Instead, I counterattack SS Liebstandarte right on the snout with the powerful 5th Canadian Armoured division. Over in Maine [sic, again, as this line runs mostly through Vermont and New Hampshire], Jeremy's made very little progress and I'm starting to develop a double line. I make another counterattack near Portland to try to relieve an infantry brigade I have cut off there. There's also a counterattack on the road to Toronto, where Jeremy has lunged forward with an unsupported panzer division. I cut it off and subject it to some attacks, though I don't have the resources to destroy it at this time.

The South is weird. It looks like Jeremy barely moved down here last turn- when he was poised to isolate Memphis and burst across the Mississippi. He's done neither, leaving me in a good position to consolidate. I can't expect this to continue, however, and I need to be prepared for Jeremy's armour in Mississippi to surge north. The one place he HAS been active this turn is out in the east, and here for the first time he's got a substantial body of armour moving up my flank. I decide to pull back the whole line, everything south of the Tennessee river is to be abandoned. This does mean losing two industrial cities, but this position is doomed now and I can't risk losing this army. This withdrawal isn't as clean as I would like, and I do have to make some show of blocking a direct approach to Charlotte, but by and large my army is withdrawn intact from this area.

I still hold Mexico City- but I won't next turn. Jeremy's finally assaulted the place, and the units involved on both sides are suffering badly. I actually have a two division mock relief force arrive from Yucatan this turn. It's possible it might worry Jeremy enough that he'll be kept back from storming the city another turn, but I doubt it. Further north, Jeremy is pottering around with the German cavalry division deployed by brigades, and has fixed the bridge near McAllen. I respond to this by zooming down the road with my armour, chasing him around a few hexes, blowing the bridge again, then withdrawing without combat. This serves very little purpose other than to remind Jeremy that I do have a presence in the area and he needs to be nice and strong before he thinks about crossing the Rio Grande again.

I'm slowly working my way to the bottom of the pile of reinforcements. I have a bunch of stuff left- but most of its on the Pacific Coast. LA to Maine is around 180 hexes, and a fully supplied division moves only 168 by rail, which means I have to wait until stuff is rested and then have it come in using half a turn's road movement- or else I need to use up two turns of rail lift. This turn I start moving these not completely ready units, but for now they go to the South, where disbanding trapped units has thinned out the forces available here more than I would like.

My attacks at Portland and in Ontario go as planned, but SS Liebstandarte stubbornly refuses to budge. 5th Armour is pretty much spent in the course of this attack and I've little to show for it. The one consolation is that I do have nearly 2,000 Shermans in replacements so I can afford a bit of armour attrition, but next turn my replacements will be down to 70%, and Birmingham plus Atlanta will make that 57% in a few turns. That's fine if it's all I lose by turn 20, but Acayucan, Memphis and Toronto are all on the menu as well.

Allied armour continues to counterattack in the northeast. Note the "(S)" on the map for Portland- this location will give the Axis a forward supply point. For now, the railhead is not far advanced from Sherbrooke




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"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

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Post #: 12
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/9/2021 6:02:41 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 13:
The northeast is good. We're in full double-line slow grind mode here, and Jeremy is shattering the strength of his best units in the process. Over in Ontario, he's reinforced the lone panzer division, so I pull my own forces back to Toronto. They're joined by a third armoured division here (there will be four next turn with the new division formed at Toronto) for more shenangins if he decides to push on ahead of his infantry again, but for now, this area is not a serious concern.

The south is. Jeremy has six mechanised divisions pushing up into the Carolinas, which is not something I can currently cope with. He's swamped the light screen I had foolishly left in place here, and is in danger of swamping my armoured reserve of three divisions as well. These guys fall all the way back to Charlotte this turn. I add another two divisions to this from the West, which might be enough if Jeremy gets overconfident- I aim to get a sixth released from Norfolk, where it has been on coast defence since turn 1.

Over to the west, Jeremy's breached the temporary line I had east of Memphis, which I'll abandon in favour of the long bend of the Mississippi-Tennessee. He's also made another anemic attempt to cross the Mississippi in Louisiana. He's slowly winkling me out of my positions here; hopefully by the time it works I'll be thrown out of the west anyway from Mexico, or by a crossing further north. Against such, now that I have the rail lift for it I'm moving reconstituted fragments up to the west bank in Arkansas/Missouri.

Best news this turn: My loss penalty fell by 9 points from last turn. I suppose this is the fruit of the very limited fighting in the South. However, after next turn, when I receive the 2nd National Guard corps (and a ton of reconstitutes) I will be running on fumes- no more pouring six divisions into the front every turn. Turns 15-30 will be the decider.

Allied troops continue to evade a major confrontation in the South- leaving Birmingham and Atlanta to fall without serious fighting




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"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 13
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/12/2021 5:10:45 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 14:
Looks like things are still holding together in the northeast; Jeremy advanced in places, but hasn't made any real breaches. His mechanised forces are looking increasingly burnt out and I should be able to continue a robust defence here for some turns. Over in Niagara, a handful of German units have pushed their way up to Toronto, but a couple of RBCs leaves the two lead divisions cut off. I'll counterattack here and aim to destroy them both, though I do have to poach a couple of brigades from my developing positions at Buffalo and Detroit to do so.

The South is where the danger is at the moment. Jeremy slipped a division over the Mississippi just south of Memphis, which not only looks like a major breach, but also puts that city out of supply. Happily, he failed to cover the crossing itself adequately, and after two RBCs the engineers involved evaporate and he's the one left isolated. I'll assault this division later in the turn and hope to destroy it.

That's not all, though. He's also in the process of forcing a crossing of the middle Tennessee, where I just don't have enough units to keep him back. I send the lion's share of my (numerous but not very ready) reinforcements to this sector this turn. On the coast, Jeremy's largest yet concentration of mechanised divisions lurches forward. I count eight such divisions, which are amply supported by infantry delivered at my abandoned anchorages along the coast. I split my armoured reserve in two here, with two divisions positioned at Asheville, NC in case Jeremy lunges for the mountains, and the remainder north of Charlotte. Happily he's not moving too fast at the moment, but he's also not taking any careless risks, which denies me the quick victories I want in this sector while I'm strong.

My battle at Toronto goes to plan, though my units here are badly worn from the fighting and I don't get the time to disengage; if Jeremy has more powerful units following up it'll hurt. As an aside, it occurs to me that the Panzerkorps HQ I killed here may be more valuable than the panzer division; with the TO that he took, Jeremy's force supply must be about 15 right now, and with the HQ gone that means the most the units in the corps can receive per turn is 7 under normal circumstances

My other serious attack this turn, near Memphis, doesn't completely come off; Jeremy's division is badly bloodied, but it's still there, which means it's reasonably trivial for Jeremy to force a more serious crossing here next turn.

Big Picture

So Jeremy will eventually break me in the South. The amount of pressure he's able to put on my forces is just too much for them to withstand. Just somehow, I have to keep them in being all the way back to the Ohio, and yet have that retreat take long enough that I'm in a position to fight Jeremy to a standstill when I get there. If he gets over the Ohio when he's this much stronger than me, the match is over. I'd also like to encourage him to expend more of his strength in Texas. He's slowly developing his breach over the Mississippi in Louisiana, but has so far failed to deploy any significant portion of his strength here. I'm also inclined to believe he took Monterrey on a complete shoestring, as he's still not made any significant inroads into Texas from this direction, either.

Worryingly, it looks like Jeremy has come up with a solid plan and is sticking to it; he's opened up fronts either side of the crucial northeast and is relentlessly squeezing them closer together. Everything west of the Mississippi is relevant only as a diversion.

Axis advances in North America three months into the campaign




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< Message edited by golden delicious -- 2/12/2021 5:11:24 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

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Post #: 14
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/13/2021 8:18:29 AM   
Jeremy Mac Donald

 

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"Worryingly, it looks like Jeremy has come up with a solid plan and is sticking to it; he's opened up fronts either side of the crucial northeast and is relentlessly squeezing them closer together. Everything west of the Mississippi is relevant only as a diversion."

Ben has seen what might well be an interesting plan and one that would make sense for the high sea transport TO I took. It is however not what my actual plan is. I want to do a double envelopment on a grand scale and I have taken the high sea transport option because I believe for that to work I need to find an advantage in number of divisions deployed. All of this is actually just the set up to force Ben to hold a massive extended front line - one he can't really afford to denude (because you can't ever afford to really denude the East). The idea being that when he and I are both stuck in a long series of defensive positions facing each other I will, for a short but critical period of the match have enough of an advantage in Divisions on the map to execute my grand double envelopment of America.

< Message edited by Jeremy Mac Donald -- 2/13/2021 8:22:57 AM >


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Post #: 15
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/13/2021 2:11:55 PM   
golden delicious


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeremy Mac Donald

"Worryingly, it looks like Jeremy has come up with a solid plan and is sticking to it; he's opened up fronts either side of the crucial northeast and is relentlessly squeezing them closer together. Everything west of the Mississippi is relevant only as a diversion."

Ben has seen what might well be an interesting plan and one that would make sense for the high sea transport TO I took. It is however not what my actual plan is. I want to do a double envelopment on a grand scale and I have taken the high sea transport option because I believe for that to work I need to find an advantage in number of divisions deployed. All of this is actually just the set up to force Ben to hold a massive extended front line - one he can't really afford to denude (because you can't ever afford to really denude the East). The idea being that when he and I are both stuck in a long series of defensive positions facing each other I will, for a short but critical period of the match have enough of an advantage in Divisions on the map to execute my grand double envelopment of America.


This is where TOAW really gets interesting: when one player has formed a very clear but completely wrong impression about what his opponent's plan is. The big double envelopment- to reach the Great Lakes from both Quebec and the Gulf Coast- had been a vision for a few Axis players in the history of this scenario, but it's a huge challenge and at this point I didn't have the inkling that Jeremy would try to pull it off- thanks in part to the lack of an immediate push up through the Plains from Texas.

_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to Jeremy Mac Donald)
Post #: 16
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/13/2021 2:17:33 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 15:
No massive disasters this turn. Worst is that the British armoured division which I had holding off the Italians at Malartic in northwestern Quebec has finally been outmaneouvred. I doubt I'll get to keep this unit, but I go down guns blazing as part of the trap is set by the remnant of the Littorio division from the first battles up here. He's also moving forward further South; happily last turn I put the first unit for the defence of Sault St. Marie in place and should be able to send more shortly.

Further east, it looks like Jeremy has given up on my line from the Atlantic to the Great Lakes; no advances here although I was vulnerable in a couple of places; I'll leave this front for later in the turn as I may want to pull some units out from here. For now all I do is worry about Toronto, where 3rd Armor is in reorg and exposed. I position my other units behind it in such a way that Jeremy shouldn't be able to cut it off, and I can disengage if necessary next turn- though the way things are going I should be able to hold Toronto a few more turns.

The South is... OK. There's an ominous lunge of converted hexes south of Charlotte, but I can't see any of the units yet. By my reckoning it has to be at least five mechanised divisions; more than I can reasonable tackle in a single turn. If I leave him another turn, he'll be on Charlotte. And yet...

And idea has formed here. Jeremy likes to fully surround cities when he attacks them; he's just done it at Columbia and he's done it at Birmingham. I think that if I pull back and let him have Charlotte, he may overexpose himself in surrounding the city. I'll then have a shot at pinning him against it with a powerful counterattack. I shift my armoured reserve north- six divisions split between Greensboro and Abingdon, Virginia, and wait another turn.

Further west, Jeremy's main effort seems to be against Paducah, which he attacked directly without taking it. I put a fresh(ish) infantry division in the rear here, and another division and a half behind THAT. Otherwise, it's surprisingly quiet on the southwestern front; he's definitely over the Tennessee, but not in strength and not in supply. He's vaguely threatening the crossings further north with mechanised divisions, and I reinforce the most vulnerable two of these with one division each. He's also still half-heartedly trying to cross the Mississippi in the far south, but strangely made no effort to reinforce the division isolated on the wrong side of the river up at Memphis. Perhaps he has no engineers here? Well, I believe I'm strong enough to wipe this division out.

I wind up pulling two good divisions out of the Northeast to add to my forces north of Charlotte. This is a huge amount of power here, I'm just hoping Jeremy hasn't noticed me accumulate it. I also have masses of reconstitutes; the units I disbanded while abandoning the line in front of Birmingham and Atlanta. They're all bits and pieces- but there are a hell of a lot of them. I'm able to reassemble two infantry divisions right off the bat, as well as putting some more bits into place at Sault St. Marie for when Jeremy finally arrives there, and finally getting the engineers I wanted to finish the first line of defence at Detroit (though I keep pulling fresh units out of here to replace with battered ones).

In Mexico, Jeremy's lunged for one of my guerrilla brigades with the units he had at Monterrey- that's fine. I think he's stronger than me here so if he doesn't advance that's all to the good. I'd consider moving one of these divisions off elsewhere- but I actually used my entire rail allowance this turn with units left waiting for next.

Well it took all turn, but I was able to kill 65. Infanterie (the division on the wrong side of the Mississippi). For its part, 3rd British Armour is now five hexes southeast of its original position, which should hopefully cause Jeremy to overreact in response. Generally, though, a quiet turn. My loss penalty rose by only three points, but Jeremy's actual fell by two.

Checking my reinforcement schedule, I get an armoured division next turn- at Atlanta. Well, Jeremy hasn't actually cut it off yet so... could be interesting.

Italian and German troops begin to press the drive west through Ontario- but there's a huge distance still to cover




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"What did you read at university?"
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"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

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Post #: 17
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/13/2021 2:31:28 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 16:
The North East looks OK still. A second turn of no attacks on the line east of lake Ontario, and only minor advances west of it. Here it's quiet enough that I resolve to stand and fight for a few turns while resting my armour. Main thing is I have to delay long enough to rebuild the- whoops- forces I withdrew from the Buffalo and Detroit position to fight this delaying action. Well actually I withdrew a lot of them to kill all those units two turns ago, but I do need to rebuild these positions. Otherwise; well, Jeremy's visibly withdrawing from this sector so it's a question of how far I strip things down; at the moment I have a double line of fortified units most of the way along, but will be railing out at least two good divisions next turn.

The interesting place is the Carolinas. Sadly, Jeremy didn't do what I'd hoped for at Charlotte, and he's not too badly exposed here. However, SS Totenkopf is almost isolated. One RBC against a Tiger brigade and I descend on it in full force. On closer inspection, 20. Panzer is here too- the more the merrier. I'll try to destroy both units this turn, if not this could get ugly for me too.

Over to the west, as expected Jeremy made a solid effort to breach my line at Paducah. He took three hexes but not the last rank and so I'm able to set up a decent defence in depth, but will need more forces here soon. I rail a number of fair-to-middling units to this area this turn.

He's also continuing to wheedle his way past my scratch force in western Louisiana, where he has the HQ of 1st SS Panzer Armee. Whether this means the rest of the formation is just behind the line I don't know, but a possibility of a breakout here is very real. I bring up the two armoured divisions from San Antonio to here- only half a turn's drive- and reinforce with a further two from the northeast. If no breach is forthcoming these guys may promptly go elsewhere.

Well. I badly mauled 20. Panzer and SS Totenkopf, but both are still on the map- and I'm committed and exposed. On his turn, Jeremy will smash my lead divisions and relieve his battered divisions. I don't THINK I'm so badly positioned that I'm liable to lose any significant forces immediately- but if he's smart he'll realise this is everything I've got, and send some troops roaring off onto either flank, forcing me to disengage in a hurry, potentially leaving a lot behind. Well. If I'm right and he has eight mechanised divisions here, two are in the pocket, two are committed at Wilmington. Of the other four, I see three southeast of Charlotte, of which two are visibly in very bad shape. We'll see how this pans out. No infantry in evidence- when his infantry shows up, it'll be time to split. It is encouraging, too, to think that I can lose about four armoured divisions and replace all the tanks. Jeremy can't.

As a sideshow, I broke 19th Armor out of Atlanta where it arrived this turn, via a brigade of German infantry. Jeremy may still whack it, but it's a small bright spot nonetheless.

Escape and counterattack in the southeast




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"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

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Post #: 18
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/14/2021 2:13:49 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 17:
The main event is still Charlotte. Jeremy countered but only enough to get his trapped units out. Looks like 20. Panzer evaporated in the process, so that's something. Question is what now. I have two brigades and an armoured division in reorg, and it would be nice to rescue them. It would also be nice to lay into SS Totenkopf as it still sits on the line in a debilitated condition. But on the other hand, mechanised units are feeding around both of my flanks. I shift my weight over to the east, where one of these prongs looks vulnerable: 6. Panzer all but isolated. If I can shift one brigade, I should be able to kill it. This keeps me away from Jeremy's main strength, too, though I will lose some or all of the trapped units on Jeremy's turn. I rail four and a half divisions to this front this turn variously from reserve or sectors where they're not needed.

Otherwise the South is peaceful. 19th Armor completes its daring escape (20th, turned up in Tampa, looks set to be less lucky) and I solidify my defences. Jeremy made no progress at Paducah, but fresh infantry has come up to the line here and this may resume. Well, my defence in depth is very strong so good luck to him. To my almost-disappointment, he's not broken out into Texas either, leaving my four armoured divisions here with nothing to do. Biggest problem in the southwest is that I've inadvertently left Memphis out of supply. I rail an engineer brigade down here to fix this next turn, but it's painful.

Sort of a crisis at Toronto. I say sort of in that Jeremy has breached the line with armour and paratroops, but I intended for this to happen at some point and am content to lose Toronto, as seems now inevitable. I aim to kill two brigades before withdrawing what I can from this sector, whilst also building up my positions at Buffalo and Detroit. I move three good Commonwealth armoured divisions into position at Buffalo from reserve behind the line further east for any mobile fighting required next turn. At present I see 19 German divisions on the line in this front as against 25 of mine, so I do want to pull more forces out of here at some point, probably by going from an odd smattering of divisions and brigades wavering between double and single lines, to a solid double line of brigades along the front- that would spare me 7 divisions, but will take a while to achieve without creating a window of vulnerability. I start work on this this turn.

Well that all went rather well. Two Italian parachute divisions reduced to a brigade and 6. Panzer destroyed, with a final round left over to put everything back just so- well, not quite so, but most of the way there. If Jeremy focuses on devouring the two divisions I've abandoned west of Charlotte this could all end rather happily.

At some point, though, I need to develop a line from Chatanooga up to Baltimore. At the moment, there's nothing protecting this entire stretch of the front except the battle going on in the Carolinas. Well, if I can get five divisions out of the Northeast and a couple of divisions out of Niagara, plus the 3rd National Guard on turn 20 and various other reinforcements, I should be able to add to the dozen or so divisions here already to the point where I can hold Jeremy off until the middle part of the match. I'm content for him- eventually- to get into Texas. He's taken his sweet time about it, and still has two mechanised divisions chasing guerrillas in Mexico.

Thinking on replacements briefly, Birmingham fell this turn which will put me down to 64% next turn, Atlanta and Acayucan [no longer an industrial city in the current version for obvious reasons] are not long for this world either, so I should be on 77% by turn 20. Toronto is doomed thereafter and I suppose eventually Charlotte. But I don't see a huge collapse coming. With such a front-loaded landing, I ought to be reeling by now. The truth of it is Jeremy's failed to bring me decisively to battle on his terms; where I've fought, it's been almost exclusively in ground of my choosing and to his cost.

Axis forces press into the Niagara Peninsula as the line solidifies in upstate New York




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 19
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/14/2021 5:09:04 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 18:
This will go down in the AAR as the turn of the indirect approach;
1) The SS Panzer Armee has finally shown up in Western Louisiana
2) Two spearheads have emerged out of Mexico, putting Jeremy in possession of crossings over the Rio Grande
3) Jeremy continues to test my defences of the Arkansas bank of the Mississippi
4) A spearhead has emerged from north Georgia towards Knoxville

The West

Let's address these in order. In Louisiana, Jeremy's swung around my flank with two mechanised divisions, cutting off three brigades here, which represent about half the force I have south of the Red River. They're a long way out from my armoured reserve and not really exposed, plus the trapped force just isn't that big of a deal to me- losing these three brigades is not ideal but I can cope. So I think they will dig in, and otherwise I will pull back and draw Jeremy into the plains. The real question is whether I leave my four division armoured reserve here to face the SS, or send them down to San Antonio to deal with what must be fairly light mechanised forces emerging from that front. I think ultimately I can cope with the loss of San Antonio but the two broader objectives I have on this front- keeping Jeremy from getting too far north too quickly, and holding onto the supply point at Galveston, are best served by leaving these divisions where they are.

Next question, do I want to continue to hold the Mississippi between the Red River and the Arkansas? I have five divisions tied down here and will need another piece to stop Jeremy crossing next turn. I could just as well pull back to the Arkansas with half of this and add the rest to my mobile force to the west. The real issue is that now the southwest has gone mobile, Jeremy could easily swing two mechanised divisions up to southern Arkansas, putting all this in a deep salient. Well. I decide to leave this for now- the above scenario at the moment would be a risky move for Jeremy, especially with my reserve still at large. With this in mind, said reserve moves up a bit closer to Shreveport.

The East

Problem number four is resolved by redeploying a number of units from the upper Tennessee down to the gap in question. This gives me a reasonable line behind the river as far as Knoxville, which I don't think he'll be in a position to flank on the next turn. However, at some point I suppose he will winkle me out of Tennessee, unless I find a LOT more units and fast.

Off in the Carolinas, Jeremy has settled down to a fixed battle; his infantry is here and that means either I have to form a line, let myself get flanked to oblivion, or get out. I chose door number 3. This allows me to send the infantry gathered here last turn off into the Appalachians, extending the line out of Knoxville, with a light screen up into West Virginia, as well as bestowing three armoured divisions as a reserve for this line. The remaining four, plus one of infantry, take up a reserve position in Virginia. I expect it to take Jeremy a number of turns to close this gap, by which time hopefully I will have more than five divisions to face him.

Niagara is good. Jeremy is slow in following up and I have lost very little here, Toronto is still in supply and Jeremy will have to fight a little to cut it off fully. I'm able to rail an armoured division from here to Texas, and two from the East coast, making seven for that front. I'll be able to extract at least one more armoured division from here next turn. The Buffalo position is now three hexes deep, with the back two rows fortified. Detroit (two hexes deep) needs a few more turns, and I decide to put in a makeshift position at London, Ontario with two Canadian armoured divisions.

Masses of movement. Once again I have units I'd like to move by rail (two armoured divisions by brigades which are separated by about 1,000 miles) but I don't have capacity. The only attack is 20th Armor trying to cut its way out of Florida, which goes passably well, though the division will certainly die in due course. Happily I have 2,000 Shermans in replacements.

1. SS Panzer Armee is committed to the front as German troops enter Texas simultaneously from East and West




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by golden delicious -- 2/14/2021 5:10:16 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 20
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/16/2021 6:05:09 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 19:
Bingo. Jeremy pushed something up to Monroe, Louisiana. Turns out to be SS Hitler Jugend. I pull out of my positions south of here on the Mississippi, whilst throwing four armoured divisions in to attempt to destroy this unit. He also has spearheads moving towards San Antonio but I have no choice but to ignore these for now.

Jeremy's also advancing more vigorously than I'd hoped in the east. He's not attacked my positions on the Tennessee just yet, but he's working his way forward and will eventually find a hole. Of course what this also means is that his lead units are horribly exposed. It's trivial for me to isolate 25. Panzergrenadier and some Italian motorised division, and attack them with my armour.

Toronto's still in supply, and what's more I now have a string of fortified units keeping it that way; Jeremy will have to bleed to take it one way or another. I pull a US armoured division out of here which, together with the two split divisions mentioned last turn, move to join the force in Virginia, bringing this back up to seven armoured divisions. Actually on reflection one of these goes to the Applachians where a breach by a single division is more likely.

25. Panzergrenadier survives as a 3-3 stub, but the Italian divisions folded on the first round and Hitler Jugend after two rounds of hard fighting. Unfortunately I don't get a third round to put my affairs in order out west, a fact which I expect to pay for, but it was nice to kill one of Jeremy's best units before it had even been seriously committed.

After last turn's frantic rearrangements, a much simpler turn in many ways, and a satisfying one, but ultimately I must come toe to toe with Jeremy's infantry in the East. Well, next turn I get another National Guard army, which together with various other bits may allow me to string something together completing my line from the Mississippi to the sea. On the other hand he may break through my line on the Tennessee and throw all of that into disarray. I'm also concerned that my positions in front of Detroit are really not at all ready for prime time; I'll want some more brigades and bits here before this matter is settled. Perhaps I should have tried to hold him at London Ontario another turn? It certainly would have been possible I think.

As always, turns 20-30 are going to be crucial. Jeremy will get Charlotte, Toronto and San Antonio for certain. Norfolk and Houston are likely to go as well. That puts me on 56% and then a dangerous 45% replacements, or 68% on turn 30. The idea is that my army will remain intact through all of this, and the battle will only be seriously mobile west of the Mississippi, where I'll retain a force of 8-12 armoured divisions to keep the advance to the pace of the infantry. If I can get him to channel his remaining reinforcements into that front then I may be able to hold him somewhat in place everywhere else. The idea is then between turns 30 and 40 he gets maybe Dallas and one other city, getting me back up to a healthy 82% for turn 40.

Local counterattacks on the southern edge of Virginia serve to keep the Axis advance in check- for now




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 21
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/16/2021 6:14:54 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 20:
Jeremy went for broke in the west, putting my committed armour and the whole of this part of the line out of supply with the use of paratroops. Since I have three more armoured divisions still in reserve, I hope to be able to cash in here. Actually, the more pieces I move the more screwed I realise I am. He's going to bag this whole force- including the four armoured divisions- and I might kill, if I'm lucky, two airborne brigades. In the meantime, he overruns all of Texas. The only positive is that I did want him focussing his offensive efforts in this direction, but I had hoped it wouldn't develop quite this dramatically. Well, I will do what I can for now whilst sending some units to prevent an easy crossing of the Arkansas.

This includes the whole of 3rd National Guard Army, which was supposed to go to Appalachia. I'm hoping that the combination of a bit of time to prepare and some decent terrain will allow them to hold for a time here, forcing Jeremy as far West as possible. Besides that, I have two other National Guard divisions and four regular brigades, plus two brigades of engineers to dig the position in.

Jeremy's also starting to put pressure on me in the Appalachians, trying to push into eastern Kentucky. If this continues I'll be pulling out of the Tennessee bend, which is now quite a deep salient, which should theoretically release a few divisions to reinforce here. He's also fighting a mobile battle with me in Virginia, where I aim to kill half a panzer division and maybe more.

Up in Niagara, Jeremy sliced through two hexes of my three on the Buffalo position; however this leaves him badly exposed and I hope to kill a panzer division at the tip of the advance, whilst deepening my position in the process. Over at Detroit, Jeremy's made contact with the first line but not attacked it, the second line still really isn't ready so this could be bad news.

My counterattacks are all very satisfying: 11. Panzer and half of Grossdeutschland die in Niagara, 5. Panzer is mauled in Virginia and half of 7. Panzer destroyed. I'm able to do very little in the west, however. This area is one hell of a mess and Jeremy will have to do a lot of slogging to hold me in the pocket, but my fear is that the three armoured divisions I sent to relieve this are going to get caught up in the mess, as there's nothing to stop the main body of the SS Panzer Army swinging around the flank here. It's a good thing I have 2,200 Shermans in replacements. It looks like I'm about to need just about all of them to reconstitute this force.

Well, this latest eruption is the last of the first wave panzer corps. With Jeremy's low force supply, I can at least hope that hereafter, his mechanised forces are going to become progressively more anaemic, as it will take him at least six or seven turns to rest them up to fighting condition. They've borne the brunt of the fighting since the earliest turns and those units which I see come into action again after their first flush look in very rough shape.

[Ref. turn 7. I still (sort of) have Toronto and San Antonio, so apparently "things are going very well"]

US Armored divisions find themselves thoroughly outmanoeuvred as the Axis airborne landings (in yellow) slam the trap shut with almost a dozen divisions trapped




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< Message edited by golden delicious -- 2/16/2021 6:15:20 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 22
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/17/2021 5:46:31 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 21:
More or less what I expected from Jeremy in the west; he's swamped my relieving forces and is ploughing up the road further west. Yet I think I can get them out as there's little between me and freedom besides airborne brigades. I'll aim to cut my way through two of them back to the line, retrieving 3-5 armoured divisions. I'll also counterattack further north, where Jeremy has pushed over the Mississippi near Memphis, hoping to drive him back here and possibly kill some infantry.

Over in the East, Jeremy is piling the pressure on my Appalachian line. I toy with the possibility of pulling out of the Tennessee bend this turn, but at this point it just wouldn't save me that many pieces. What I do need to do is disengage in Virginia, where I'm being badly swamped by the advancing German infantry. This comes off pretty cleanly; three armoured divisions remain in Virginia just north of Richmond, whilst the rest move west into Appalachia. Despite the crisis in the west, I'm obliged to send all the reinforcements I can find to this front. I risk taking a few brigades off the second line in the northeast to send down here.

Up at Niagara, Jeremy has shoved forward again. I don't think I've the strength to cut off his lead unit this time, so I will limit myself to shoving it back. Jeremy's weak and exhausted here so this should go easy. I also take a gamble here and pull the two Canadian armoured divisions out from reserve at Detroit; these will smash the three Italian mobile divisions which have appeared, exhausted, at Fort William. I also dispatch a battered regiment to reconvert some of the hexes they've taken along the road, to ensure Jeremy gains nothing from this march.

All in all, better than expected. I destroyed three airborne brigades and routed two others, I should be able to rescue five of the seven armoured divisions (albeit two of them in totally unbattleworthy condition) and shoved back Jeremy's foray over the Mississippi at Memphis. His lead SS division is out of supply, and dealing with what I still have in the pocket should prevent him following up too closely. If I get a turn's supply, the battered divisions will fill up with tanks again; I have 2,300 in replacements.

The attention now shifts somewhat to Appalachia; here, I was unable to shove back Jeremy and I think next turn will see a general rearrangement of my forces, including most likely a withdrawal from the Tennessee salient; these positions have served me well but the salient will be getting deeper from next turn. Fortunately I have a large number of full-division reconstitutes coming in next turn which can stretch this line further up toward Baltimore. I may also pull a couple of divisions out here from the west, where I may have overreacted initially. Also need to remember next turn that I still have at least one division from 3rd National Guard army undeployed where it wasn't on a rail line.

Bloody fighting. Jeremy's doing what he can to defeat me decisively in the field. These major battles are exactly what I've been trying to avoid since turn one, and from next turn I'll be trying to rapidly disengage in the west. Elsewhere, though, I've run as far as I'm prepared to run. I need to cobble together sufficient forces to block Jeremy's progress into the northeast or else this match is over. I may have to gamble on denuding the front in Massachusetts and New York, I may have to let Jeremy run amok in the west, but he can't be allowed to cross the Ohio-Potomac line.

German troops isolate Toronto and begin looking for weaknesses in the routes out from Niagara




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 23
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/17/2021 5:54:02 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 22:
Nothing especially egregious from Jeremy this turn, rather a series of minor insults. I open by moving my units against Jeremy's long range offensive toward Fort William. My regiment reaches the road- to find Jeremy has been moving German infantry along it. This is well and good as it justifies my offensive here; eventually German infantry at Duluth will be a bit of a bummer, so the more I can delay this the better. Ideally, they'll arrive in strength around turn 50, when the tide has turned and I can decisively counterattack them.

Niagara is a bit hairy. I find that the armoured division I left in an advance position near Buffalo has retreated INTO the pocket, and I'm obliged to counterattack to get it out. The Detroit side is better; Jeremy attacked but failed to shift a hex of my first line. Behind that is a further hexrow of fortified units, and I have a new line forming behind THAT, though it will take at least two turns to be ready. After that I hope to have my armour back from Fort William.

My line in the Appalachians is in pieces, so as planned I pull back from the Tennessee this turn. This allows me to build a line along the spine of the Appalachians and extended down the Cumberland to join the existing positions in western Kentucky, and a modest armoured reserve is starting to collect behind it. I still have a gap of eleven hexes to the sea which I'm not certain how to close; for now this is the responsibility of the five armoured divisions I have in Northern Virginia, which this turn will directly counterattack one of Jeremy's panzergrenadier divisions. This is a bit of a desperate move, but I need him to slow down here.

The Southwest

In the west, my estimate of five divisions rescued has been scaled back to 2-4. Two are actually out, and another two look emminently saveable, but the fifth has been pushed back down into the depths and won't see light again. What's more, to save one of the other two I have to commit quite a large part of my force. The good news is a lot of Jeremy's units down here are already looking battered. The bad news is the lodgement he has just southwest of Memphis is increasingly powerful; it's only three hexes, but each of the three has a panzer division.

Further west things are better; I've kept Jeremy somewhat occupied with a few odd regiments playing games with ZOCs, and he's contented himself with cutting off Houston. If he knew I had NOTHING out here he might be tempted to send everything roaring off toward the Canadian border. I'm happy to cede him Dallas on turn 30 and Oklahoma City on turn 40 if that's all I have to give out here.

This turn I start a process I mean to continue. I have two battered reconstituted armoured divisions this turn, both of which head (via one turn's delay) to the Pacific. In their place I get a spotless, full strength armoured division which had been watching part of the coast. As long as Jeremy doesn't choose turn 23 to land with the Japanese this will work swimmingly.

ANOTHER triumph. Jeremy had used one of his remaining airborne brigades to hold one side of the pocket- so I vigorously counterattacked it with the survivors. It evaporated. Altogether that's four in this venture, plus the one I got on the first turn means half of their strength remains. This in addition to my utter routing of the Italians from the gates of Fort William. Sadly I couldn't evaporate anything, but these forces are in utter disarray.

A turn that felt good for my minor counterattacks, but the real fight now is in the Appalachians. I managed to scrape together a few brigades to send here from various places, and I've got a few spare from the Tennessee line as well, but Jeremy is much stronger. I can't hold out for ever- but I can give him one humungous repair bill.

The remnants of the US 5th and 6th Armies scramble to get to the relative safety of the north bank of the Arkansas




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_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 24
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/19/2021 6:05:05 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 23:
So, uh, turns out Jeremy DID choose turn 23 to land on the Pacific coast. Well, he's not ashore. He assaulted the coast defenders at Vancouver and hoped I wouldn't notice that one of the units on the end of the line is a mountain division and capable of getting ashore without an anchorage. One of my battered armoured divisions from reserve rail into this hex, which I hope will at least make it difficult for him to walk into the hex. I also bring up a fully-armed and operational armoured division which had been watching the California coast.

Another pressing concern for me this turn is that Jeremy's made his way through the last fortified hex of my position at Buffalo. I'm able to fortify the hexrow behind, but that won't stop him. As such, I use the two fresh armoured divisions I have here to shove back at Jeremy's battered and bruised attackers. Detroit for its part is fine, Jeremy attacked again but didn't advance one hex.

The Appalachians are OK. Jeremy's getting forward but not at a fantastic rate; I aim to have a solid fortified line to just south of Lexington next turn, then I can focus my efforts further east. Here the gap in front of Washington is closing fast but still extant; as it narrows though it becomes easier to defend with my armoured reserve. I need to lock this down sooner rather than later as matters in the West are progressing rapidly.

There I'm in real disarray. I hope to continue to counterattack Jeremy's breach over the Mississippi- aiming to cut off and destroy 2. Panzer- whilst holding the SS off from capitalising on the crossing of the Arkansas which they made this turn. Unfortunately the armoured division in reorganisation south of the river which I committed so much to save last turn is STILL in reorg this turn, so it'll die. Actually once I pulled stuff together here and concentrated most of it in the little space between Little Rock and Memphis, things actually look pretty good. Ideally, Jeremy will bloody his nose here and it'll be that much later when these guys swing way out around to the west where I have only a handful of brigades.

I of course make the obligatory air attacks against Jeremy's embarked units; this takes up the two most powerful units from each of my air forces, which does weaken my counterattacks. These are mostly disappointing this turn; I fail to even isolate much less destroy 2. Panzer, I make no progress at Buffalo and suffer serious losses when pushing back in Virginia. Moreover the effect on the Japanese isn't all that severe, with their units mostly still in a reasonable condition to attack next turn, including the critical mountain infantry division. About the only attack that goes well is the one in western Ontario, where I continue to rout the Italians, destroying one division and spotting a division Jeremy had moved off to the north to outflank me, hopefully in time to stop it, well, flanking. This though I think will need to be called off next turn as these units need to come down to deal with the situation at Buffalo- and will need a couple of turns to rest.

1st, 3rd, 4th and 8th Armor due to come back to me in the next four turns. This brings my stockpile of Shermans down to a paltry 1200. I will run out eventually. I'm hoping to have more losses amongst my National Guard, which Jeremy has largely avoided fighting so far, to take some of the pressure off the regular army. Replacements are OK at 69% for now, but San Antonio will be gone next turn, and Houston and Toronto in the next few turns. That puts me at 50%.

Japanese troops try and fail to seize Vancouver from the sea. Note that house rules permit Japanese mountain troops to disembark directly in non-anchorage hexes if they begin their turn in an adjacent hex




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"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 25
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/19/2021 6:12:30 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 24:
I feel lucky this turn- Jeremy failed to get ashore in the Pacific. He didn't flank me in western Ontario or overwhelm me in the west, and his attacks seem to have come to a halt at Buffalo whilst continuing (without success) at Detroit. The crisis front remains in the southeast, so this is where I open the turn. First I build up my fortified positions in western Kentucky, which are now looking strong and should stop Jeremy's light forces in their tracks. The real problem is that Jeremy is pushing forward hard in Virginia, where I still have the gap. He's put two good infantry divisions out of supply, and it's up to my armour to undo this while I put together a position. The reinforcements here aren't coming in anything like as fast as I need them, but if I can close the gap then the armour will give me the time I need to get the position ready.

It's a similar story in the west, where I aim to push back 2. Panzer (having given up on isolating it) whilst a line takes shape here. Some of Jeremy's armour is already moving west, but the bulk of it is deployed here. I shift two of my remaining three armoured divisions west to respond, where they're joined by various fragments; the bulk of my strength remains on the lower Arkansas to keep Memphis viable as long as possible. Further west still, Jeremy's tentatively advancing on Dallas, where I put his lead division out of supply. I have the idea he's not here in a great deal of strength, but my weak response ought to make it clear I'm here in no strength whatsoever.

Fun and games in Mexico. I've been continuously feeding guerrilla brigades into the centre of the country as they arrive, and the last two were positioned either side of Jeremy's mixed force here last turn. He duly advanced- and I split the brigades, putting the whole lot out of supply. The guerrillas this turn are joined by an irregular division [these units aren't included in the current version] out of Chihuahua. To the south, another such division wipes out two South American regiments, lifting the siege of Oaxaca. As a footnote, for my money Jeremy still has a staggering number of good pieces in Mexico, including at least one German mechanised division. All this should have come out 5-10 turns ago.

I destroy a single Japanese division left off the coast with RCAF bombers, both of my counterattacks in east and west are successful, and the Canadian armour in western Ontario (which I decided could carry on its job a few more turns) destroys the Centaro armoured division.

I've been wringing my hands for the last several turns about how the loss penalty is worse for the Allies than it was in the last match Jeremy and I played. Well this turn it's 83-178 in Jeremy's favour, whereas turn 24 last time around it was 84-177. A symbolic victory.

A good turn all round. I'm probably going to regret saying this- but I see the light at the end of the tunnel now. Jeremy did take all three isolated cities this turn, and Norfolk and Dallas are indefensible. Yet I feel like the unstoppable war machine is starting to wind down. Without the constant influx of fresh panzertruppen, Jeremy's plays are starting to become more predictable, and his offensives bloodier. 3. Panzergrenadier, which I counterattacked in Virginia this turn, is down to a 5-3. 2. Panzer on the other side is a 7-5. His units across the map are battered and they don't recover. Mine, by and large, are bright-eyed and rosy-cheeked. On turn 27, 4th National Guard army will join the line in the East. If things are still intact by then, I have a reasonable degree of confidence that I can bring his offensive out here, if not to a complete standstill, at least down to a crawl. I'll then shift some of the armour from here, Buffalo and western Ontario out to the west, together with the four reconstituted divisions (or their substitutes), and seek to fight a vicious mobile battle against Jeremy's exhausted panzers.

The fight isn't over. I still have plenty of chances to screw up and lose the match. But I also have a chance to win it. Though ironically this turn my victory level fell to "marginal victory"...

German troops at the extreme limit of their supply line make contact with the new US positions in Kentucky, as the situation stabilises in Arkansas




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< Message edited by golden delicious -- 2/19/2021 6:13:47 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 26
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/20/2021 3:56:50 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 25:
Kapow! Jeremy got through two hexes of the Detroit line. This is a bit of a surprise, and I sort of wish I had a reserve ready to counterattack here as he's seriously exposed. I will rearrange matters so he can't break out immediately, and bring over three armoured divisions from Buffalo, where he's apparently given up for the time being. There's one hex of the line Jeremy's facing which is held by a 3-3 entrenched regiment, so he's definitely through here if I don't counterattack.

I'm also counterattacking in Appalachia. The pressure is intense here but Jeremy's grinding his army out of existence. I make a local counterattack to shorten the line in the centre, whilst in Virginia I toy with the idea of a bolder attack to cut off a lead division, but this is too much of a risk. Instead I go with the usual armoured blow directly on the snout, whilst the infantry starts building up a double line. All my substantial reinforcements head to this front as usual; the arrival of the first substantial reconstituted armour in California allows me to bring the fresh armoured division out from there this turn.

In the west, Jeremy does seem to have given up on the direct approach against my strong line between Little Rock and Memphis, with the SS having largely shifted further west. I respond by shifting some of my weight- three National Guard divisions- in that direction, whilst keeping various scraps free to cut supply should he lunge too far too fast. He actually pulled too much out by Memphis in fact, leaving a division easily isolated by RBC. Here I'll counterattack and hope to destroy it.

Like at Dallas. There, Jeremy responded to my supply-cutting move by bringing up three more divisions. I respond to THAT by cutting off all of them, plus the lead division which was already isolated this turn.

The door begins to close in Northern Virginia




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"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to golden delicious)
Post #: 27
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/20/2021 4:36:02 PM   
golden delicious


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Turn 26:
Phew. I was practically having nightmares about the prospect of Jeremy breaking through at Detroit: he pulled his armour out leaving two shattered brigades. Christ knows why, but I'm safe here, for now. I open the turn with two RBCs which clears these units out, destroying one of them. Next on the agenda is bringing back the fighters from the Pacific, which I forgot about last turn.

Next, Appalachia. My line's leaking in a number of places, but Jeremy's exhausted everywhere and my armour's ready to answer. I get an RBC in the centre of the line which cuts 21. Panzer off, ready for destruction. Another RBC two hexes over deals with another breach, which is then sealed with an infantry division brought up last turn. Both RBCs were against full divisions.

Out West, various tiny regiments put three German mechanised divisions and four other divisions out of supply (though Dallas is out of supply too), whilst I refuse my flank to Tulsa. I think my prediction above holds; if I put the new National Guard army into Appalachia, this will allow me to bring most of this armour out over the next several turns. For now, this front receives two of the three armoured divisions that are not needed at Detroit.

This turn I start filling out the line along the exposed stretch of Mississippi between the mouth of the Ohio and Memphis. I also send several units to Fort William to relieve the two Canadian armoured divisions which are no longer adding much value up here. These plus one division from the Pacific (replaced by reconstitutes) will go to the West to join the two from Detroit in the coming turns.

My attacks are bloody. Countering in the mountains isn't great fun, and a couple of my armoured divisions look significantly worse for wear as a result. Yet every hex I retake is one Jeremy must assault again, and my units recover far faster than his (my force supply is 31, his cannot be above 20, and his rail head is still in Georgia). Still, with my Sherman replacements rapidly racing to zero, I had better watch how I use my armour, and get the National Guard to take some of the heat.

Jeremy's fixated on how low my replacement rate is- 50% since the loss of three cities last turn (and 45% shortly when I lose Norfolk). I'm concerned about how his army is a wreck. In four turns, he'll receive the last new German infantry corps, but even though these are still coming, I think the high-water mark of his strength was some time ago. The one problem I really have is in the air, where I'm getting walloped every turn. If I wasn't getting at least one new fighter unit every turn for the next ten turns I think I would be dropping out of the air war fairly shortly.

Scratch Allied forces continue to delay the Axis advance attempting to push into Oklahoma, but ultimately serious forces will be needed here to bring this to a halt




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Post #: 28
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/21/2021 10:14:27 AM   
Jeremy Mac Donald

 

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At this stage in the game I am still feeling reasonably good about things. So far everything has gone according to plan but has cost me significantly more then I had expected and I am worried that I might have lost enough Divisions to make it so I don't have as much of an advantage as I had hoped for. So if we look at the turn 25 screen shot it should be noted the there is very little in the way of Panzertruppen here. They are already withdrawing toward the West. The infantry will keep making futile attacks for awhile primarily because I desperately want to hold Ben in place here for as long as possible.

This is what, I suspect, has happened to the Panzers at Detroit I suspect. I don't think I can take the city and I have excess Sea Transport at this point so I am likely looking to transfer them to the West - though I am not 100% on that. Not mentioned at all so far in this scenario likely as Ben does not quite realize how much I am banking on it but I have been moving west through the Canadian Wilderness repairing a rail line as fast as I can - the Panzers might be supporting that though I don't really think so as that operation is supposed to be primarily done by Axis minors.

In fact what I am about to really start panicking about is the supply situation. One of the reasons I went with this plan was I really wanted to test out using high Sea Transport TO's. Ben almost never chooses more then 1 and I generally choose 2 but neither of us had ever taken 3 or more in the 25KM version of the scenario. Here I get a concrete reason why. while -5 supply is pretty survivable if not great, -10 means my Panzer Divisions take something like 6-7 turns to resupply even with an HQ on a rail line. This is a much bigger deal for me then the actual losses at this stage. Ben's hard fighting counter attacks means that he is taking heavy damage as well and with his replacement rate falling and the loss rate at a very acceptable roughly 100 points in my favour I feel I am in a good position for the decisive battle in the West... if only I can resupply my Panzers!

One of the changes this scenario brings about is we reduce the range of the TOs by a fifth so instead of +5,0000 sea transport for -5 supply it becomes +4,000 sea transport for -4 supply. Instead of -20% and -40% replacements it becomes -16% and -32% replacements. These options seem more reasonable within the confines of the scenario.


< Message edited by Jeremy Mac Donald -- 2/21/2021 10:15:26 AM >


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Post #: 29
RE: Fall Grau 2.13 Jeremy vs. Ben - 2/21/2021 3:16:29 PM   
golden delicious


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeremy Mac Donald

At this stage in the game I am still feeling reasonably good about things.


Indeed. It comes up next turn that I realise that you're serious about coming down from Fort William, but I don't think the full scope of this was clear to me- yet. It should have dawned on me a bit earlier that all those Panzers you landed at Quebec in the first part of the map must be somewhere- I didn't kill all of them.

quote:

One of the changes this scenario brings about is we reduce the range of the TOs by a fifth so instead of +5,0000 sea transport for -5 supply it becomes +4,000 sea transport for -4 supply. Instead of -20% and -40% replacements it becomes -16% and -32% replacements. These options seem more reasonable within the confines of the scenario.


Exactly what I was thinking of readings your comments. We found that the high end options were never chosen. These more limited options give the Axis player more flexibility within the bounds of what he might actually want to do.

< Message edited by golden delicious -- 2/21/2021 3:18:25 PM >


_____________________________

"What did you read at university?"
"War Studies"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"
"Absolutely nothing."

(in reply to Jeremy Mac Donald)
Post #: 30
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