Chris Buhl
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January 1942 – Allies


Strategic Warfare

Although US fleets entered play in December, many had only 1-step each. Not wanting to face targeted shots by German subs, most of the US fleet remained at sea in the Atlantic, preparing to transfer units to the UK before getting fully outfitted for ASW duty.

Nothing of consequence occurred in the US Coast Convoy Box. In the North Atlantic, the UK inflicted 2 ½ hits on German subs, but German raiders and subs scored 4 hits on British fleets! Two shots by subs hit meaning that the Germans were able to eliminate a British DD block and a CA block. Also sunk were 3YPP.

In the South Atlantic German U-Boats again wreaked havoc, scoring 3 hits! The Italian sub scored 1 as well, but that was shrugged off for navy Tech advantage. However, two more British DD blocks were eliminated, along with 2YPP.


Production

In England, all US Lend Lease came to the home islands, where it helped complete a British and a Canadian mech infantry unit, but the blue PP were useless due to inactivity on the part of the RAF in Europe. The British build a 2-step DD block, then build 1 SHQ and 1 Navy HQ step. They begin construction on 5 white factories, which they probably should have done a year ago. [NOTE: Since I ruled that Britain could not have sent all the PP to Afrika that they sent, I'm also ruling that these five white factories have been built up to 5, so this turn's expenditure puts them at 6. I think I have totally lost track of what I'm doing, but oh well...] They save 8YPP, 1RPP, 6BPP and 1WPP. They lose 16BPP. The British air force simply has not been aggressive enough.

In Afrika, desparate to hang on, the British spend 7YPP on infantry and artillery, as well as the Navy HQ. They save only 2YPP (no chance to send more to the depot this month), 1RPP, 1BPP and 5 Oil. They lose 2RPP and 4BPP.

The USA builds 3 steps on its Navy HQ and 5 DD steps. It begins construction on 2 White factories, losing 5RPP and 10BPP.


Strategic Rail Move

USN HQ activates to fuel 3 fleets and conduct one sea transport. One British Navy HQ activates to fuel 3 fleets. Churchill activates to fuel an air and an armor unit.


Movement


Air HQ in Afrika activates to fuel a fighter and a bomber unit. The US Strategic Bomber rebases to England. A US GU attempts to cross the Atlantic to Gibraltar. The 3 block German fleet attempts to intercept, but fails. The 2nd Marine Infantry joins General Patton. In a desparate bid to maintain a foothold in Afrika, the British launch an offensive SE of Port Said with artillery, fighter and bomber support, but fail to make a recon roll (AAA chases the recon aircraft away). Goering activates to send German fighters into the battle hex in Afrika, although they are out manned at 3-steps.


Combat



After 3 rounds of bitter fighting, the UK forces are badly reduced, but so are the Germans, whose air cover fled.




Germany, recognizing how tenuous the Allies hold on their newly won territory will be, withrdraws. The British also withdraw most of their force back into Port Said, leaving behind only an infantry screen to protect their flank.


January 1942 – Russia


Production

Russia has 38YPP, 8RPP, 6BPP and 4WPP. She uses 2 BPP from Lend Lease to add 2 fighter steps and builds 2 more fighter steps w/ 3 combined YPP/BPP. Builds a full strength artillery and 2 cadre step infantry units from the dead pile. Spend 22 YPP adding infantry steps. Add 1 build to 2 blue factories (now at 2). Builds the cadre step and 1-step of a marine infantry unit for 3YPP/BPP. Saves nothing, loses 8RPP and 4WPP.


Strategic Rail Movement

Stalin activates to conduct an SRM, fuel an air and an armor unit.


Movement

Russia has more or less stabilized the Moscow perimeter. The two major problems it faces now are 1) a perhaps overly aggressive thrust into Finland has left units cut off and also put more emphasis than necessary on the defense of Leningrad; and 2)the threat to Stalingrad / Saratov (vital production centers and rail heads) and the oil fields in the Caucasus region.




Finland OOS units





The breadbasket of the Rodina under siege (this picture is not a complete representation of Soviet production



In Finland, Stalin orders units near Vyborg to open the supply lines to beleaguered Russian troops occupying Lahti, while realizing that capturing Helsinki is likely a fool's errand. Keeping Finnish and German troops in Finland from threatening Leningrad is the only worthy objective in this theater.




The effort succeeds, and troops in Lahti can reprovision. But the Finns (after suffering 2 hits) retreat to the Northeast, leaving them in position to still harry Russia's supply lines.




Near Stalingrad, Russian forces simply pull back on the flanks slightly, hoping to keep the vital city from begin encircled before important rail linkages can be built this summer.




Under direct orders from Stalin himself, the badly weakened Russian 4th infantry, so recently re-constituted and sent to the field, is ordered on what amounts to a suicide mission. They will cut the very advanced German forces supply lines, and because German ZOC doesn't enter a major city will still have supply themselves. That won't help them mount a defense against the Germans, but it will cause the slightest delay in the German advance. And the 6th Cavalry will be able to temporarily keep German troops out of Maykop, since their lack of supply will prevent them from attacking. And at this point, any delay is a good thing.
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Greg Rogers
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Port Said looks a bit desperate. But it least the UK holds Gibraltar in your game. I've got problems in the one I'm doing as the UK is beginning to retreat in the Delta - and supply can't be traced through the Med...
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Chris Buhl
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grogers64 wrote:
Port Said looks a bit desperate. But it least the UK holds Gibraltar in your game. I've got problems in the one I'm doing as the UK is beginning to retreat in the Delta - and supply can't be traced through the Med...


Yes we have both pushed the British pretty close to the brink haven't we?
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Greg Rogers
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I made a bit of an error with the Italian OSS and did not count them as Tech 1. I just noticed this. Over the course of the war so far, it caused 7 hits in the convoy boxes which it shouldn't have. I just gave the UK a gift of 7 DD steps - and 7YPP...but the damage has already been done. I don't view it as a showstopper though. This game is really only a test to see how the Navy works - and to see what would be the best way to use it solo (for the next time!) The loss of Gibraltar, however, is now becoming a real pain. I'm going to have to send the Americans into Suez - and soon...



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Chris Buhl
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I've been thinking about next time too! I really want to figure out a good way to distribute naval units for a June 1941 start though, and I'm not sure I've done well enough in my game to do that validly. Maybe we can both count how much navy remained in our respective games on both sides in 1941 and I can average it out?
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Chris Buhl
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grogers64 wrote:
The loss of Gibraltar, however, is now becoming a real pain


For my money the worst thing about losing Gibraltar is that, in the alternate dimension spawned by your game, no one will ever have the pleasure of viewing "Das Boot".
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preston smith
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You guys are bringing up a lot of interesting questions. Keeps me thinking and learning.
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