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Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf567 (A)

 
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Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf567 (A) - 8/3/2021 10:02:00 PM   
mind_messing

 

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Joined: 10/28/2013
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After a long tour in War in the Pacific, I've been drawn to War in the East 2. I'm effectively going in to this one cold, but so is msf, so hopefully that should balance things out.

Our house rules are:

No AI assist locks
both FOWs on
and enhanced TB controls.

I'm starting this AAR as much to document my mistakes and lean on the collective knowledge of the forum to learn the game. It feels a very different beast from the Pacific - I feel reasonably comfortable as Nimitz or Yamamoto, but much less so as Zhukov.
Post #: 1
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/3/2021 10:05:22 PM   
HardLuckYetAgain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

After a long tour in War in the Pacific, I've been drawn to War in the East 2. I'm effectively going in to this one cold, but so is msf, so hopefully that should balance things out.

Our house rules are:

No AI assist locks
both FOWs on
and enhanced TB controls.

I'm starting this AAR as much to document my mistakes and lean on the collective knowledge of the forum to learn the game. It feels a very different beast from the Pacific - I feel reasonably comfortable as Nimitz or Yamamoto, but much less so as Zhukov.


Welcome and good luck!

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 2
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/3/2021 10:36:35 PM   
mind_messing

 

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Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
Initial Impressions and Overall Strategy


One thing that's similar to War in the Pacific is that the first turn tends to be a bad one for one side.

It's a bad turn, make no mistake.

297k men lost, 5.8k guns, 1.8k AFV's and 4k aircraft.

Worse than that, what really worries me is the sense that there's very little immediately to hand to get to grips with the German invader.

The North




In the north, the Germans have occupied both Riga and Daugavpils. Whatever they have in Daugavpils seems very, very exposed to my eyes, and I'm considering unleashing the VVS on it and swarming it with whatever riff-raff I can gather to throw a pinch of sand into the gears.

Elsewhere, I think I will be putting blocking units in the rail-line north of Riga, and running back with everyone else in that neck of the woods to the Narva line.

I'll start to dig in at Pskov, if only to try and buy some time for a more developed defence in depth here. I am really liking the look of the terrain between Pskov and Leningrad for the defence.

The Centre



The quickest way between A and B is a straight line, and there's a long line of German units. They're ruler-straight towards Smolensk and thence to Moscow, and it looks like there's a fair few armoured units in the mix too.

Here, I think I need to buy time to get a good defence in depth formed along the Land Bridge.

The pockets look well-formed, so not sure I'll be able to cause much disruption here, but we will see what we can do. With what's left, stuff that's worth saving will aim to get east of the Dnepr, while the rest will go towards sitting in good defensive terrain and being a nuisance for the German spearhead.

The South



It doesn't feel like a complete disaster here (yet).

First order of business for me is to try to get the tank divisions back in reasonable order. There feels like a lot of space here that I can trade to give me a chance to get things in order here. That said, I don't want to repeat the mistake of the First Battle of Kiev, so I think I'm looking to save these tanks to look to beat on a few German units where possible and keep a fighting retreat going back across the Dnepr before turning to dig in.

I've not got a sense for what's possible for the Soviets yet at all, but as tempting as a stand at Zhitomir would be, it feels like too bold a move.



(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 3
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/3/2021 11:27:29 PM   
mind_messing

 

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Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


After taking an absolute smashing on the first turn, now is the fun part of trying to pick the Soviet Air Force back up off the ground. The air aspect of this game is growing on me. I'm used to War in the Pacific, where you need to spend much more time and effort with individual squadrons, so hopefully some time and effort spent here will pay dividends down the line.

So, what needs to be done?

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

Third, rationalise AOG's to use broadly similar aircraft. The mishmash of types in some AOG's is slightly annoying.

VVS Orders

I'm still at the re-organisation stage for the VVS currently, but early thinking on orders will be:

- turning Northwest Air Command loose on the German spearheads at Riga at Daugavplis.
- withdrawing Western Air Command back in some semblance of order for the coming fight at the Land Bridge.
- Southwestern Air Command will be pulling back to around Kiev, then looking to pull off some targeted ground attacks on leading Axis units.
- With Southern, I might see about duking it out with the Romanians.
- Long Range Air Command I'm somewhat clueless about a good use for. I like the notion of these 800 or so heavy bombers really ruining the day of a panzer division in clear terrain, but I doubt that will work out as well as I think it will. I may have them move to support Northwest and focus on Daugavplis, and let Northwest really go to town on the Riga spearheads.

Airbase construction

It's a legacy of playing WITP:AE for so long, but I need to think about this too.

Open to advice on where to develop airbases. So far, the Volkhov region east of Leningrad seems exceptionally bereft of airbases, which worries me as to the impact of a German push hard for Leningrad.

The stretch NW from Moscow looks quite under-developed too, which seems an important consideration if that ends up being the main Axis effort in 1941 into 1942.

Any other areas that are worth developing early on?

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 4
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/3/2021 11:28:17 PM   
mind_messing

 

Posts: 3270
Joined: 10/28/2013
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quote:

ORIGINAL: HardLuckYetAgain


quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

After a long tour in War in the Pacific, I've been drawn to War in the East 2. I'm effectively going in to this one cold, but so is msf, so hopefully that should balance things out.

Our house rules are:

No AI assist locks
both FOWs on
and enhanced TB controls.

I'm starting this AAR as much to document my mistakes and lean on the collective knowledge of the forum to learn the game. It feels a very different beast from the Pacific - I feel reasonably comfortable as Nimitz or Yamamoto, but much less so as Zhukov.


Welcome and good luck!


Thanks, both for the wishes and for some of the material you've provided so far on this game. It's been helpful in developing my thinking and in getting a greater understanding of the game.

(in reply to HardLuckYetAgain)
Post #: 5
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 7:46:42 AM   
loki100


Posts: 10190
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


...

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

...


actually the bi-planes are useful, there are two core dynamics with the VVS. If the LW is absent, anything that can drop a bomb is very useful. Remember that any interdiction cancels admin movement and if you have uncontested GS then you gain extra damage over the direct bomb load. If the LW is present, anything (& this includes the Yak-1s) you commit will die (mainly as in A2A combat experience/skill trumps almost every other variable)

Caucasus - why? If an airgroup has experience<national morale (& most will, not least due to taking on untrained pilots to replace losses), then if in the national reserve they will fly training missions to bring their skill/experience up to that threshold. If your problem is a relatively full air group with decent experience but low morale, then yes rotate a bit back on the map and set to rest.


_____________________________


(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 6
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 11:04:59 AM   
mind_messing

 

Posts: 3270
Joined: 10/28/2013
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quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100


quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


...

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

...


actually the bi-planes are useful, there are two core dynamics with the VVS. If the LW is absent, anything that can drop a bomb is very useful. Remember that any interdiction cancels admin movement and if you have uncontested GS then you gain extra damage over the direct bomb load. If the LW is present, anything (& this includes the Yak-1s) you commit will die (mainly as in A2A combat experience/skill trumps almost every other variable)




That's a good challenge actually. Legacy of my WITP mindset where aircraft = VP's. Evidently it will take a bit of (un)learning to make aircraft losses more palatable to me!

quote:


Caucasus - why? If an airgroup has experience<national morale (& most will, not least due to taking on untrained pilots to replace losses), then if in the national reserve they will fly training missions to bring their skill/experience up to that threshold. If your problem is a relatively full air group with decent experience but low morale, then yes rotate a bit back on the map and set to rest.


My understanding is that if they're in the national reserve then they'll have absolute priority for replacements, and what I want is to keep a really firm grip on what airframes go where. Ideally, to feed the best squadrons with the best airframes and let the rest train with their older stuff.

That said, happy to be corrected if I'm misunderstanding the rules!

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 7
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 12:23:54 PM   
Aurelian

 

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Joined: 2/26/2007
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I do what M60A3TTS does and put the depleted ones in the Caucasus and set them to restricted.

In Aug 41 they drop down to size 32, then to 20 in Sep.

When the size goes down you can start rebuilding.




_____________________________

If the Earth was flat, cats would of knocked everything off of it long ago.

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 8
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 12:58:23 PM   
HardLuckYetAgain


Posts: 6504
Joined: 2/5/2016
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quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100


quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


...

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

...


actually the bi-planes are useful, there are two core dynamics with the VVS. If the LW is absent, anything that can drop a bomb is very useful. Remember that any interdiction cancels admin movement and if you have uncontested GS then you gain extra damage over the direct bomb load. If the LW is present, anything (& this includes the Yak-1s) you commit will die (mainly as in A2A combat experience/skill trumps almost every other variable)

Caucasus - why? If an airgroup has experience<national morale (& most will, not least due to taking on untrained pilots to replace losses), then if in the national reserve they will fly training missions to bring their skill/experience up to that threshold. If your problem is a relatively full air group with decent experience but low morale, then yes rotate a bit back on the map and set to rest.



I tried using nothing but the good airframes in my Soviet AAR a couple of months ago and still got decimated in the Air. I quickly came to the conclusion you "need" to use those old airframes.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 9
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 1:03:42 PM   
HardLuckYetAgain


Posts: 6504
Joined: 2/5/2016
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing


quote:

ORIGINAL: HardLuckYetAgain


quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

After a long tour in War in the Pacific, I've been drawn to War in the East 2. I'm effectively going in to this one cold, but so is msf, so hopefully that should balance things out.

Our house rules are:

No AI assist locks
both FOWs on
and enhanced TB controls.

I'm starting this AAR as much to document my mistakes and lean on the collective knowledge of the forum to learn the game. It feels a very different beast from the Pacific - I feel reasonably comfortable as Nimitz or Yamamoto, but much less so as Zhukov.


Welcome and good luck!


Thanks, both for the wishes and for some of the material you've provided so far on this game. It's been helpful in developing my thinking and in getting a greater understanding of the game.


It is all of us together for a better understanding :)

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 10
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 6:06:48 PM   
loki100


Posts: 10190
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

...

My understanding is that if they're in the national reserve then they'll have absolute priority for replacements, and what I want is to keep a really firm grip on what airframes go where. Ideally, to feed the best squadrons with the best airframes and let the rest train with their older stuff.

That said, happy to be corrected if I'm misunderstanding the rules!



while this is mostly true for ground units its not really the case for air. If you set upgrade to manual, they won't flip, even on auto they'll get their average experience sorted out fairly quickly.

The frustrating bit re managing the VVS (well there are quite a few ), comes in 1942 and later. Planes that just enter production can be assigned to completely new air groups before they can be assigned to existing ones. You need to track these down and flip them to older stuff (but usually by then you have masses of the various I-series planes spare so this is relatively easy once you know what to look for)

_____________________________


(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 11
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 6:22:30 PM   
carlkay58

 

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Except the moment you move an air group to the Reserves it is changed to AUTO upgrade.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 12
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/4/2021 7:28:49 PM   
tonyhnz

 

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I had seen some planes in reserve on auto and wondered at the time how they got that way. I think another related problem is you have to wait a turn before you can switch them back to manual.

(in reply to carlkay58)
Post #: 13
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/13/2021 3:36:19 PM   
mind_messing

 

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Turn 2 & 3

Thanks to my ignorance of how PBEM ++ works, no screenshots for these turns, but the general theme from turn 1 seems to be staying strong.

Turn 4

So, I don't think things are going particularly well for the Soviet Union at this point.

Losses screen is below.




The North

As of turn 4, here's the current state of play. The Panzer spearheads are at the Narva, though there's a lot still backfilling through the Baltic states.

In a nice turn of events a bypassed Soviet tank division was able to sneak back in to Riga and flip that hex, so I'm hoping that's been a nuisance for the Axis advance up here.

The priority now is two-fold:
1. start turning the road to Leningrad into as much of a meatgrinder as possible, taking full advantage of the poor terrain
2. keep North-Western front on an aggressive footing to try and divert as much Axis forces from the drive on Leningrad.

In order to deliver on point #2, I'll be considering some limited counterattacks in the Pskov area. Anything for a victory or two here!



The Centre

Grim, grim, grim.

Smolensk fallen, and my heavy commitment to the land bridge is starting to look very, very exposed. I think I can turn the terrain around Smolensk into something of a bear bit for the German Panzers, at least until the infantry comes up, and this sector is first on the line for the reinforcements making their way on map from the strategic reserve.



The South

Overall, I'm quite pleased with the state of affairs here. We've managed to avoid any massive encirclements, and I am planning to continue to trade space for time as far as is possible. Just need to keep moving east, finding a good line of defence, and avoiding being cut off by the Axis spearheads.


(in reply to tonyhnz)
Post #: 14
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/13/2021 4:01:46 PM   
jubjub

 

Posts: 240
Joined: 5/2/2021
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You’re doing great everywhere but the center. I’d recommend relocating your units from Veliki luki to the main approach to Moscow. There’s really no reason to defend that area of the map.

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 15
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/13/2021 4:34:02 PM   
HardLuckYetAgain


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jubjub

You’re doing great everywhere but the center. I’d recommend relocating your units from Veliki luki to the main approach to Moscow. There’s really no reason to defend that area of the map.


Is this the area you are referencing in your comment circled in Orange?




Attachment (1)

(in reply to jubjub)
Post #: 16
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/13/2021 4:45:07 PM   
jubjub

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: HardLuckYetAgain


quote:

ORIGINAL: jubjub

You’re doing great everywhere but the center. I’d recommend relocating your units from Veliki luki to the main approach to Moscow. There’s really no reason to defend that area of the map.


Is this the area you are referencing in your comment circled in Orange?






Pretty much. Maybe 5 hexes less in the eastern direction. I'm sure Mind_messing wishes those units were around Smolensk right now instead of their current position.


By the way, did you have a unit in Smolensk, or did he take it for free? @mind_messing

(in reply to HardLuckYetAgain)
Post #: 17
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/13/2021 4:52:43 PM   
mind_messing

 

Posts: 3270
Joined: 10/28/2013
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quote:

ORIGINAL: jubjub


quote:

ORIGINAL: HardLuckYetAgain


quote:

ORIGINAL: jubjub

You’re doing great everywhere but the center. I’d recommend relocating your units from Veliki luki to the main approach to Moscow. There’s really no reason to defend that area of the map.


Is this the area you are referencing in your comment circled in Orange?






Pretty much. Maybe 5 hexes less in the eastern direction. I'm sure Mind_messing wishes those units were around Smolensk right now instead of their current position.


By the way, did you have a unit in Smolensk, or did he take it for free? @mind_messing



I think there were some riff-raff that I had gathered up in the hex, but nothing with any bite to it. Very much a "doh" moment for me, but good to learn the lesson that the best way to defend a hex is with units actually in that hex!

(in reply to jubjub)
Post #: 18
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/16/2021 10:51:02 PM   
mind_messing

 

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Turn 5 - Jul 20 1941

"Not great, not terrible" is my verdict for this turn.


The North

Fairly quiet up here, as the first probing attacks across the Neva are holds for the Soviets.

Jubjub's comments on the 5 hexes west rings true, as I'm feeling uncomfortable with the salient emerging west of Velikie Luki. Will need to remedy that.

As you can see from the screenshot below, a large number of rifle divisions have arrived back on map from the strategic reserve. They're getting split almost equally between Leningrad and the centre, as they're still the two areas I'm most worried about.



The Centre

Still a bit of a mess here, but I think I can salvage something. Current thinking is to look to reposition as much as possible to the north and north-east of Smolensk, and refocus what's left around Bryansk. I am writing off the pocket south of Smolensk.

There might be the scope for some nice counters here, as there's the odd component of a panzer division that looks very overstretched and very low on combat value

You can also see the crop of Moscow militia divisions getting deployed out to the field in preparation for the battle to come, which I hope will be a ways off yet. The units fresh from the reserve will be railed in to Vyazma this turn to fill out that sector of the front. I quite fancy the terrain to the south-west of Vyazma as a means to block the highway to Moscow, so we will see how that turns out.



The South

The orderly withdrawal continues here, which is very satisfying for me. At some point I am going to need to break the link between South-western and Southern Fronts to pivot South-western along the Dnepr and get Southern Front back further east, but I want to hold off on that for a turn or two if possible.

In short, I just need to accept that I won't be able to keep a continual front line in this region with unit density being what it is.

Odessa held out against the first attack, but I only put a single rifle division in it, so it won't hold against a substantial attack. Bit of an oversight, and will need to learn how to use the city forts for maximum effect for Kiev, Leningrad and elsewhere.



Red Army & Logistics

I had a bunch of rifle corps disband, as well as conversions into combined arms armies so I will need to take a look at the OOB and see what needs done there. So far, Southwestern and Western fronts are my assault HQ's. There are a bunch of battered shell HQ's that are wandering about and will need sent to the reserve to refill and generally just a lot of unready units.

I'd appreciate any advice or being pointed to a primer on (1) Soviet logistics and (2) rebuilding the Red Army. Manpower feels okay at 237k. Total men under STAVKA is a tad under 3 million, but need to keep driving that up.

I have a further question on trucks. That they are important goes without saying, but what should I be looking out for and keeping track of?

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 19
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 12:48:16 AM   
M60A3TTS


Posts: 3979
Joined: 5/13/2011
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quote:

ORIGINAL: HardLuckYetAgain


quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100


quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


...

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

...


actually the bi-planes are useful, there are two core dynamics with the VVS. If the LW is absent, anything that can drop a bomb is very useful. Remember that any interdiction cancels admin movement and if you have uncontested GS then you gain extra damage over the direct bomb load. If the LW is present, anything (& this includes the Yak-1s) you commit will die (mainly as in A2A combat experience/skill trumps almost every other variable)

Caucasus - why? If an airgroup has experience<national morale (& most will, not least due to taking on untrained pilots to replace losses), then if in the national reserve they will fly training missions to bring their skill/experience up to that threshold. If your problem is a relatively full air group with decent experience but low morale, then yes rotate a bit back on the map and set to rest.



I tried using nothing but the good airframes in my Soviet AAR a couple of months ago and still got decimated in the Air. I quickly came to the conclusion you "need" to use those old airframes.


So you're saying that you rushed to a conclusion.

(in reply to HardLuckYetAgain)
Post #: 20
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 1:29:21 AM   
M60A3TTS


Posts: 3979
Joined: 5/13/2011
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quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 1 - 22 June 1941
VVS Re-organisation


...

First order of business is to get the battered squadrons off to the Caucuses till they can be brought back up to strength down the road.

Second, get the biplane fighters off the frontline. They seem like free kills for the Luftwaffe at this stage. I may even go a step further and move the I-16s off the frontline as well, but that might make my overall numbers too low.

...


quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100

actually the bi-planes are useful, there are two core dynamics with the VVS. If the LW is absent, anything that can drop a bomb is very useful. Remember that any interdiction cancels admin movement and if you have uncontested GS then you gain extra damage over the direct bomb load. If the LW is present, anything (& this includes the Yak-1s) you commit will die (mainly as in A2A combat experience/skill trumps almost every other variable)


Not quite sure what you are advocating here. Convert all bi-planes to bomber skill? Seldom do I find the Luftwaffe absent in places that it matters. Yes, a skill 65 pilot will die in a Yak-1 just as easily as they will an I-153. Still, I'd like to think that the Yak-1 does stand a better chance shooting down an enemy plane than an I-153 when pilot skills are identical. That and the Yak has better range meaning a better chance to catch an unescorted or low escort bomber mission.



quote:

ORIGINAL: loki100
Caucasus - why? If an airgroup has experience<national morale (& most will, not least due to taking on untrained pilots to replace losses), then if in the national reserve they will fly training missions to bring their skill/experience up to that threshold. If your problem is a relatively full air group with decent experience but low morale, then yes rotate a bit back on the map and set to rest.


Well....

In theory yes, in practice it's a matter for debate, because of this nugget:

16.7.4 Pilot Training

pilots with experience ratings over 50 will have less chance to gain experience through training than pilots
with experience less than 50.


That means the more pilots you have above experience 50 going into the reserve, the less effective the training program becomes, regardless as to what the Air NM is currently set at. This is important to understand in light of the fact that the great majority of Soviet air-to-air combat kills come from pilots with an experience level of 60 or more. In other words, this training program for the most part won't help your pilots down a whole lot more enemy aircraft.

Also, sending any air units to the reserves prior to Turn 12 must be done with caution. Once regiments drop to size 20, all air regiments in the reserve drop to 20 pilots. Now yes, the number of pilots in the CR always says zero, but remember that there is always a pilot for every plane in the reserve in spite of that. So if you have 2,000 planes in the reserves, you have 2,000 pilots for them. If you then take a regiment with say 5 planes and 60 pilots with all their experience from the map and send it to the reserves, the unit will arrive and then having been capped to the 20 aircraft will subsequently only retain 20 pilots. The remainder simply vanish. So in this example you could be throwing away 40 well trained pilots who will be more skilled than 95% of whatever the "pilot training program" can come up with.

For these reasons it makes a lot of sense to keep air units on map in the early game. And the Caucasus has plenty of airfields to park your refugee aircraft and pilots and await better days.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 21
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 1:47:30 AM   
M60A3TTS


Posts: 3979
Joined: 5/13/2011
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mind_messing

Turn 5 - Jul 20 1941

"Not great, not terrible" is my verdict for this turn.


The North

Fairly quiet up here, as the first probing attacks across the Neva are holds for the Soviets.

Jubjub's comments on the 5 hexes west rings true, as I'm feeling uncomfortable with the salient emerging west of Velikie Luki. Will need to remedy that.

As you can see from the screenshot below, a large number of rifle divisions have arrived back on map from the strategic reserve. They're getting split almost equally between Leningrad and the centre, as they're still the two areas I'm most worried about.



The Centre

Still a bit of a mess here, but I think I can salvage something. Current thinking is to look to reposition as much as possible to the north and north-east of Smolensk, and refocus what's left around Bryansk. I am writing off the pocket south of Smolensk.

There might be the scope for some nice counters here, as there's the odd component of a panzer division that looks very overstretched and very low on combat value

You can also see the crop of Moscow militia divisions getting deployed out to the field in preparation for the battle to come, which I hope will be a ways off yet. The units fresh from the reserve will be railed in to Vyazma this turn to fill out that sector of the front. I quite fancy the terrain to the south-west of Vyazma as a means to block the highway to Moscow, so we will see how that turns out.



The South

The orderly withdrawal continues here, which is very satisfying for me. At some point I am going to need to break the link between South-western and Southern Fronts to pivot South-western along the Dnepr and get Southern Front back further east, but I want to hold off on that for a turn or two if possible.

In short, I just need to accept that I won't be able to keep a continual front line in this region with unit density being what it is.

Odessa held out against the first attack, but I only put a single rifle division in it, so it won't hold against a substantial attack. Bit of an oversight, and will need to learn how to use the city forts for maximum effect for Kiev, Leningrad and elsewhere.



Red Army & Logistics

I had a bunch of rifle corps disband, as well as conversions into combined arms armies so I will need to take a look at the OOB and see what needs done there. So far, Southwestern and Western fronts are my assault HQ's. There are a bunch of battered shell HQ's that are wandering about and will need sent to the reserve to refill and generally just a lot of unready units.

I'd appreciate any advice or being pointed to a primer on (1) Soviet logistics and (2) rebuilding the Red Army. Manpower feels okay at 237k. Total men under STAVKA is a tad under 3 million, but need to keep driving that up.

I have a further question on trucks. That they are important goes without saying, but what should I be looking out for and keeping track of?



To be honest, this already looks lost for the Soviets. Northwestern Front is completely out of position and there seems to be little in the way of an Axis advance to Leningrad.

The center is... well I'll just say I've seen this before. Western Front will disappear, then the nice green divisions (Moscow MD?) and then the Stavka ones. All will be fed in turn into the Axis gristmill before having had a chance to build up on both men and prep points.

In light of the first two issues, I don't think the south will save your bacon.



Primer on Soviet logistics- Rely on your existing depots. Those on the front lines need to be priority 4, not 1 like you have at Kiev. Set Leningrad priority 4. Refit divisions on depots and obviously set on refit. Don't count on a lot of reinforcements otherwise. Try to keep units on map so they can build prep points, Use the transports of the VVS to resupply units refitting on depots where needed.

Rebuilding the Red Army. Again, I fear that boat already sailed. But as you asked, refit rifle divisions with emphasis of experience levels 50 and above. You need good commanders like Tolbukhin and Rokossovsky in the Western Front armies. Give the assault HQ armies the best artillery. For other info, see my stickied Ten Pearls of Wisdom for Soviet Players in The War Room. I'm told that it has a few redeeming features.

(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 22
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 11:29:39 AM   
mind_messing

 

Posts: 3270
Joined: 10/28/2013
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: M60A3TTS

To be honest, this already looks lost for the Soviets. Northwestern Front is completely out of position and there seems to be little in the way of an Axis advance to Leningrad.

The center is... well I'll just say I've seen this before. Western Front will disappear, then the nice green divisions (Moscow MD?) and then the Stavka ones. All will be fed in turn into the Axis gristmill before having had a chance to build up on both men and prep points.

In light of the first two issues, I don't think the south will save your bacon.

Primer on Soviet logistics- Rely on your existing depots. Those on the front lines need to be priority 4, not 1 like you have at Kiev. Set Leningrad priority 4. Refit divisions on depots and obviously set on refit. Don't count on a lot of reinforcements otherwise. Try to keep units on map so they can build prep points, Use the transports of the VVS to resupply units refitting on depots where needed.

Rebuilding the Red Army. Again, I fear that boat already sailed. But as you asked, refit rifle divisions with emphasis of experience levels 50 and above. You need good commanders like Tolbukhin and Rokossovsky in the Western Front armies. Give the assault HQ armies the best artillery. For other info, see my stickied Ten Pearls of Wisdom for Soviet Players in The War Room. I'm told that it has a few redeeming features.


Thanks for the candid response. It does prompt some good reflection from me on what the respective goals should be for the Soviets in the early turns (and how I completely missed the mark when it came to addressing them).

Northwestern Front: Dug in infront of Pskov

Western Front: The Land Bridge and Smolensk

Thanks for the comments on logistics and the signpost to the Pearls thread, will digest that.

(in reply to M60A3TTS)
Post #: 23
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 4:13:53 PM   
Q-Ball


Posts: 7209
Joined: 6/25/2002
From: Chicago, Illinois
Status: offline
Keep going for learning and good to see an old WITP-AE hand in here! You'll find that this game is less complicated than WITP-AE, but ONLY in comparison to WITP-AE. I'm sure you'll get there!

The #1 goal IMO early isn't holding terrain, but preserving the Red Army. Looks like you're losing a ton of units, and you are getting critical for on-map forces, so this is the problem you have.

This may be salvageable, others have pointed out the critical nature of Moscow direction. If you lose Moscow, you're done, not just in VPs but so many other ways. Thankfully the terrain is pretty tough, but be careful of a right hook through Tula.

Your opponent is not making a huge effort on Leningrad, but you are leaving yourself open right now....you need to get troops to Novgorod ASAP. The route to Leningrad is a straight line through the swamps through Novgorod (roughly) and to Lake Ladoga.

Not sure if you have enough units.....if you have more than 200K in the reserves right now you are doing something wrong. You need to get every comrade possible on the map with a rifle in hand.

_____________________________


(in reply to mind_messing)
Post #: 24
RE: Mindfully making mistakes - Mind_messing (S) vs msf... - 8/18/2021 9:03:52 PM   
mind_messing

 

Posts: 3270
Joined: 10/28/2013
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Q-Ball

Keep going for learning and good to see an old WITP-AE hand in here! You'll find that this game is less complicated than WITP-AE, but ONLY in comparison to WITP-AE. I'm sure you'll get there!



Yes, in many ways it's quite refreshing, in others less so.

Ground combat feels much more fluid and nuanced compared to AE, but that's a given thanks to the focus of the game.

The air system feels like a massive loss of control compared to what I'm used to with AE, but I don't fancy managing pilot training for the entire Eastern Front.

I have to admit, really not a fan of having switched to U-GO I-GO. The dynamic of WEGO from AE is something I miss greatly.

Not sure I'm a complete pilgrim from the Pacific over to the Eastern Front just yet, but we're getting there. At any rate, it doesn't feel as bad as the Allies in '41, or Japan in '44.


quote:

The #1 goal IMO early isn't holding terrain, but preserving the Red Army. Looks like you're losing a ton of units, and you are getting critical for on-map forces, so this is the problem you have.


That probably is the core misunderstanding of my present position. I've been too keen to take fights early to buy some time and cause some problems when I should have been keeping units alive to fight another day.

Part of it is ignorance, part of it is a lack of game sense on my part. Not quite sure of what the right balance is on time/space/fighting power. I'll have a better idea after this game

quote:

This may be salvageable, others have pointed out the critical nature of Moscow direction. If you lose Moscow, you're done, not just in VPs but so many other ways. Thankfully the terrain is pretty tough, but be careful of a right hook through Tula.

Your opponent is not making a huge effort on Leningrad, but you are leaving yourself open right now....you need to get troops to Novgorod ASAP. The route to Leningrad is a straight line through the swamps through Novgorod (roughly) and to Lake Ladoga.


That's actually a comfort to hear. This turn I sent a substantial number of refitted rifle divisions to both sectors you have mentioned here. Hopefully, it isn't too late.

Time will tell...

quote:

Not sure if you have enough units.....if you have more than 200K in the reserves right now you are doing something wrong. You need to get every comrade possible on the map with a rifle in hand.


Again, that's good to know. Rest assured that the reserves will be properly scoured next turn!

(in reply to Q-Ball)
Post #: 25
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