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Subject: Drive to the Volga, 9/14, part 4 rss

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The last turns since I checked in saw good, but not spectacular progress. No important breakthroughs or disasters, just steady progress along all fronts. The Russian reinforcements did finally come up from the south on Turn 7, but my brother satisfied himself with blunting my attack along the edge of the board, and he did not bother mounting a counterattack, probably concerned about time and Stukas. Overall, although I easily won the scenario, 115 CVP to 45, my forward progress was disappointing throughout the map.

In the area to the north, I was hoping to get to the edge of 9th January Square, but ended up about 100-150 meters short along most of my line. With another two turns I think that I could have made my goal, but alas, my northern reinforcements came on board too late.

In the middle of the map, I was hoping to be across Communisticheskaya and making progress into the next block all along my line. Here too, I failed: although I managed to get up to Communisticheskaya along almost all of my front, only in the two blocks facing Kurskaya did I make any progress past it to the other side.

Only in the south am I satisfied with my progress. I had planned to bypass and encircle the Rail Station, leaving its assault until tomorrow, but I managed to take it opportunistically, and I also seized most of the buildings to its south. Except for a handful of holdouts north of the Children’s Home, I have managed to reach hexrow J everywhere south of the Stalingrad-1 plaza.

I think that I was much too afraid of activating reinforcements. My plan from the beginning was to stay out of sight of Russian reserve counters until I had amassed a powerful force to deal with whatever might be under there. In retrospect, I think that this is a mistake. I spent a fair amount of time idling forward progress, waiting for enough reinforcements to swamp reserve counters which mostly contained a handful of conscript squads. Had I treated them like just another concealed unit, I think that I would have made better progress.

It isn’t all doom and gloom, however. I am pleased with how many casualties I have inflicted. 115 CVP includes all three of the Russian onboard T-34s, 35 squads, and a slew of captured support weapons. I also managed to capture both Rail Stations, eliminating potential nuclei of Russian resistances. Although I am worried about the coming Russian night counterattack, I am not particularly worried about losing these two: the northern rail station is well behind my front lines, and Stalingrad-1 is still surrounded by blazes, even after the Refit Phase, so it will be well illuminated, apart from being fortified.

I’m still a little worried, though. I don’t really know yet what the Russians are capable of at night, and I also don’t really know what the Russians have at their disposal. So far, of a possible 19 CPP worth of units, I have only discovered 8: 2CPP worth of fortifications (and not even all of those), a reserve SMG company, and a reserve NKVD company. Where are the remaining 11 CPP? Lord only knows!

Next up: night!

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