Filip W.
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Welcome back, dear readers. If you're new to this Campaign you might want to begin your perusal of the trials and tribulations of a German Field Marshal (yes, I've promoted myself) here: AAR: Conquering the World, part 1 - France must fall

For those of you who want to jump right in, here's a quick summary:

The Players:
General Wavell - A skilled but sometimes overly cautious player, world class ASL player. Plays British/US.
Comrade Stalin - An aggressive and forward player, loves to attack. Gets frustrated. Loves Axis and Allies. Plays Soviets.
Field Marshal Guderian - Me. Love optimizing and going for high gain plays but very risk avoidant. Liable to commit to small forces for too big issues. Plays Germans.
General von Manstein - Big thinker and strategist. Likes to observe and lead rather than getting his hands dirty. Plays Germans.

The Plan:
Storm France. Bomb the BEF into tiny, tiny pieces. Prevent Dunkirk, refuse Vichy. Charge through Spain and conquer Gibraltar. Drive straight through French North Africa. Shake hands with the Japanese in India then take on the USSR. Memo to self: organize victory parade.

Except it didn't go that way. Wavell conducted a masterful defense of France, managing to beat the German forces down to about 50% of their starting strength while rescuing almost half of the BEF back to Britain. As we start our report it's the end of August 1940 and France has just fallen, with the Maginot line still holding on. Here's what it looks like:


We're not grouped on the Spanish border, the German infantry corpses are pretty much corpses (down to 50 and 75 percent of their operational strengths) and there are still Allied units in France. During our two week hiatus Guderian spent inordinate amounts of time in planning sessions, staring at intelligence reports and wracking his brains on what to do next. The failure of the Luftwaffe to inflict any significant damage on the Allies has weight heavily on him, enough to risk a negative report to Hitler. After badmouthing Göring Guderian is now on the Führers bad side and it's imperative that he comes up with a good plan. At this point a message from Von Manstein arrived:


Incoming message
Classified - eyes only, security level 5, use Enigma encryption five rolls
From: von Manstein
To: Guderian
Subject: What next?

Comerade in Arms. I have considered our options for strategy and see four:
1. On Hitler's advice, switch our attention to the East, preparing an invasion as soon as possible.
2. Press the UK - he lost 100 000 - 150 000 men in France. Strike through Spain and Gibraltar, aiming at FNA.
Force use: 48-60 infantry divisions + 2 Army group headquarters. Panzers useless in winter mud weather.
3. Balkans - take the east, induce Finland into another war with the USSR. Press our advantage preparing for #1.
4. Pray


To which Guderian replied by field telephone.
- Listen, I've got a crazy idea.
- I'm listening.
- We rail down three full strength panzer groups to Birindisi and Reggio in Southern Italy, then ship them straight to Africa, attacking Tunis with the Italians and striking east with the Panzers. We'll only lose 50% of their strength in acclimatization (the panzers not being North Africa troops and thus suffering form logistics problems and breakdowns). Then we drive them ragged, not replacing anything just fighting with them until they're wiped out. That's 40 Production Points in cost per panzer group. Building up a Veteran Africa corps force to that level would cost us 36 PP and we've only got 15 per month (at best, in EFII you roll a die per five points spent on the Med Front - that's how many PP actually arrive less UK fleet sinking them enroute). In the west we've got 50 PP so we can easily recoup what we spend.

Manstein was apprehensive, especially since each panzer division in Africa cost 5 PP of upkeep each month but he promised to take a look at the intelligence reports.

Said and done. The generals met early on war night and realized that yes, the Germans didn't have the strength to attack Spain. Also, attacking would make Spain ally with the Allies, giving them 200 PP of free troops (that's 10 months of production for the Allies at this point in time). At the same time, if the Germans could grab all of North Africa Franco might join them instead. The big problem was what Wavell would do - the British still being strong he could waylay the German plans by throwing troops into North Africa.

- It's a danger, said Manstein.
- No it's not. We'll launch Seelöwe, said Guderian.
- That's insane. There's no way we'll succeed. And think of the cost, HQ activations only will use up all of our production. We'll be set back by months.
- We don't have to succeed, we only need to scare Wavell into reacting. Look, Aberdeen and Scapa Flow are unoccupied. If we blitz them we've got a 50% chance of landing a troop there. And there are two empty coastal hexes at Brighton and Lincoln. If we land there he'll have to react. And each time he reacts that's 10 PP of HQ activations. We can lose 30 PP for each reaction and still come out on top logistically. (That was actually an error not taking into account the Soviet production.)
- Oh, well, it's your neck if Hitler finds out, said Manstein.
- Hey, trust me, said Guderian and began to move the troops into position for Seelöwe. In Africa the Italian 20th Mechanized Corps rushed out from Tripoli heading for an empty Tunis - the Free French 2 mountain corps had popped into existence in Algiers instead of defending the vital Axis supply link.

Incredibly enough Wavell reacted immediately upon seeing the Germans heading into harbors along the Channel. He activated his Supreme HQ and moved his troops to cover all approaches to the British heartland. Every single hex got filled - and not a single unit headed for Africa.

Here's what things looked like after the first fortnight in September:


German forces are moving north into position, a panzer group is heading for its shipping harbor in Italy in the lower right hand corner and the Germans have knocked out two of the three Maginot forts without losses (that's another rules error we made, French forts do starve to death).

In September the Russians, after supreme diplomatic pressures against Romania, annexed Bessarabia (actually it's an Axis diplomatic event, no sane Soviet player would want a stretch of land of no military or industrial value and claiming it pisses the Romanians off). The second fortnight the Italian 20th Corps captured Tunis, closely followed by the Italian theater HQ and 10th infantry corps. In October the Axis initiated an intensive diplomatic campaign to get Romania to join up against the Communist threat.

- Here's where all those ones and twos you've been rolling would come in handy, said von Manstein.
- You roll, said Guderian. I always roll crap.
- Don't be superstitious, said Manstein. Dice follow a strict law of average. Now roll.

In October Romania did not join the Axis.

The western front was quiet - German units waiting in ports along the Channel, mostly without the HQ:s needed to get them across but MI14 failed to spot this. In North Africa though, things were coming to an edge.

As the Italian 20th closed in on Algiers doubt started to seep through the Axis High Command. A single, unsupported, two strength, mechanized corps against a dug in mountain corps with who knew how much manpower. For a moment Guderian hesitated. Loosing the 20th would mean a swift French sortie towards Tunis, and the German panzers were already committed to Alexandria. Calling them back would take months and put a big drain on Axis Supreme and Theatre headquarters. Even so, if the 20th could lock the French in combat it might be enough for the Italian infantry to surround them. Then, in a few months time, the French would starve down to their core cadre and the combined Italian forces might be able to dislodge them. If they didn't get reinforcements from Britain. If they didn't break out. If they didn't slaughter the Italians. If, if, if. Der Teufel take it, stick to the plan, commit the Italians.

Then the Miracle of Algiers: Wavell, frightened by the approaching motorized (both mechanized and panzer groups move at a speed of 3) forces, decided to conserve his strength and withdrew the French to Casablanca! The way into Algiers was free!

This is how things looked at the end of October:


On the Western Front German forces still threaten Seelöwe. A single Maginot line fort is holding out so France isn't completely conquered yet. And the Fist of Wavell smashes into the North Atlantic (he does look pissed, doesn't he?)


The Miracle of Algiers. Free French troops are withdrawn in the face of approaching Italians.


But here's where things turn interesting: the first of the German panzer groups is approaching Alexandria, securing the road along Sidi Barani, Mersa Matruth and El Alamein.


The first fortnight in November 1940: With a lucky supply roll the leading panzer group is reinforced to 75% of operational status while the second lands at Tobruk, ready to follow along the secured road. As Wavell hasn't moved anything around in the Mid East that's a British mechanized corps in Alexandria, probably at its original half strength status as the British hadn't moved many PP:s to the Med Front. Behind it, at Suez, lies the British HQ and Jerusalem is held by a 2 strength colonial infantry force. Below that is von Mansteins arm. He sure is a hairy bastard...

With the lucky reinforcement (we had 4 PP saved, managed to roll 10 on two dice) the front-most Panzer Gruppe was up to strength, enough to risk going up against the British Western Desert Force mechanized unit. Locking it in combat would prevent the British from strengthening it. As there were no plans on strengthening the German panzers Axis HQ felt there was nothing to lose - engaging the WDF would force the British to either withdraw, abandoning Alexandria, or be faced with a pincer movement and starvation. Guderian had expected the WDF to be at strength 2 and got quite a shock when it turned out to be strength 3 - enough to, with a lucky die roll, wipe out the panzers entirely. Having witnessed how well trained Wavell's troops were Guderian's heart rate soared as Wavell picked up the dice. They clattered over the table: a five, a four and a two meaning only a single hit. The panzers returned fire to no avail; having prepared for the assault the WDF was safely dug in and the few Mark II:s knocked out weren't worth much anyhow. But their mission was complete, the WDF was engaged and the British were on the defensive.

Defensive did not mean passive. Wavell immediately saw what was coming and before the following panzers could even begin their encirclement by entering Alam Halfa, the Palestinian Force infantry were rushed across the Nile. To quell any unrest in Palestine the ME THQ was relocated to Jerusalem. Here it would both provide cover and be reasonably safe. This, unfortunately for future British actions, meant abandoning Suez.

In November von Manstein went on a diplomatic mission to Romania, securing their allegiance for the Axis (dude rolls way better than me).


November 1940, second fortnight: apart from moving the Westfalia panzer group to Alam Halfa to secure the flank no major action would take place on the Suez front until overwhelming force could be brought to bear on the British.

Having secured Romania's cooperation the Axis continued their diplomatic take-over of the Balkans by suggestion closer liaisons with Bulgaria in December. Hitler, having thought that an experienced front line general with recent victories in Egypt would be able to influence the Slavs, sent Guderian.

- Dude, said Guderian. I don't want to roll.
- You're such a pussy, said Manstein. Roll the dice.

In December Bulgaria did not join the Axis.

The Allies, meanwhile, used the Axis advanced to bully Greece into joining them, something they would later bitterly regret. The Germans, not wishing to launch combat operations in mud, grouped on the Yugoslav border in preparations for a spring campaign. At the same time German troop trains continued the buildup along the Curzon Line while assuring Stalin that they had entirely peaceful intentions.

Not that it worked. Stalin had moved troops towards the Curzon line for months, building a defense in depth that would be near to impossible to pierce by blitz. Who knew, it might even afford Stalin the opportunity to charge the Germans, should the diplomatic situation deteriorate and put the two powers at odds with one another.


December 1940: Not much happening, mostly preparations for further action.


January 1941: Rommel enters Africa at Tripoli, way to far away to have any bearing on the forces marshaling against Alexandria.

In January Hitler sent von Manstein to (successfully) negotiate Bulgaria's entry into the war. This was followed by a swift redeployment of a panzer and an infantry corps to the country.

On the second fortnight the German panzers were joined by their cannonfodder: the Italian 10th infantry corps. All forces were thrown into the fray. Wavell's troops defended themselves with aplomb, knocking out fully half of the Italians. Manstein flew to Africa to take personal command of the panzers and the German armor tore through the British lines, scoring four hits (on four dice) and inflicting crippling casualties on the WDF. With a single strength step remaining it hung on for grim life as the Italians gathered for the assault. Guderian handed the dice to Manstein. Manstein shook his head.

- Roll the dice, he said.

The dice clattered on the table: snake-eyes. In January the Italians did not inflict any casualties on the British.


January 1941: German panzers and Italian support troops break through the defences of Alexandria.

February starts with mild and dry weather in the West. German diplomats try to convince Yugoslavia to join the Axis to no avail. Worse, the political situation in Yugoslavia destabilizes to the point of them joining the Allies instead. Not that the Axis mind, much. Their panzers are ready to roll into the country and on Hitler's orders and Guderian's execution they do. Having Greece unfriendly German divisions roll into Saloniki to harass the harobor and prevent Allied ships from unloading. Yugoslavia is immediately cut off. The Yugoslav army starves where it stands, unable to neither attack nor withdraw.

In Africa the Luftwaffe roars into combat in support of the attack on Alexandria, wiping out the last remains of the WDF but there the assault ends (as a THQ it is unable to blitz).


On the brink of defeat Wavell takes drastic measures; he withdraws the Palestinian colonial infantry to Sudan, and the HQ to Aden. German panzers roll unopposed into Suez, capturing the last major North African Port and securing a North African Victory for Germany.

With so many ports available there is no shortage of supplies. New Axis units arriving in the med will no longer be forced to lose strength in acclimatization. As a bonus Greece can no longer trace national supply and their troops begin to starve, without German troops ever needing to enter combat with them. (This infuriates Stalin who feels it is illogical. Troops should at least be allowed to fight, he feels.)


February 1941: Greece and Yugoslavia cut off by the fall of Alexandria.


In March Franco, seeing the success of the Nazis, finally realizes where his fortunes lie: Spain joins the Axis, Spanish troops invest Gibraltar (Guderian was hoping for a zero strength static there but the devious Wavell had built it up to strength one, way to much for the poor Spaniards to handle) and Franco's North African veterans charge down to capture Casablanca, cutting the Free French off from supply.

This shakes Wavell badly. He had barely started shipping units to the Mid East by way of South Africa and now the entire African coast is in Axis hands. Not only that, the Spanish infantry is available to them, ready to take over some of the garrison duties on the French coast, freeing experienced German units for the Eastern front. But as the tactician he is he immediately spots a flaw in the German plan: Franco's troops have left their only safe supply line across the straights of Gibraltar unguarded.


The French move in for the kill and the British navy attempts to blockade Casablanca but the Spanish organize a fleet of small Moroccan fishing craft and supplies arrive to the beleaguered troops that way. Guderian quickly suggests that Franco covers the straits again and all of Africa is secured for the Third Reich. Guderian is heaped with accolades in Berlin and awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds (eat your hear out Hans-Ulrich Rudel).

On a more tragic note, General von Manstein comes under suspicion of plotting against the Führer. As Abwehr operatives close in on his headquarters, von Manstein climbs into his personal Fieseler Fi 156 Storch and takes off - for Moscow! Von Manstein is found guilty of treason in his absence and a reward of a million Reichsmarks if offered to anyone who manages to slay this traitor to the Fatherland.

Those in the know follow what actually happened behind the curtains: Stalin, not being much of a medium-heavy scale war gamer to begin with, decided that it was too frustrating that nations could be starved into submission. He thus bowed out and his position was left vacant. As a new player (we'll name him in the next session report) has approached with the intention of playing Germans, von Manstein decided to flee to Russia, get a face transplant and resurface as Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov (you didn't believe that the original Zhukov really survived the Stalinist purges, did you?).

So what's in store for the future? Will there be a Barbarossa? The original plan called for delaying it until 1942 in order to capture the African front. But Africa is captured already, is an early Barbarossa feasible and optimal?


March 1941, second fortnight before April reinforcements and Diplomatic events
Spoiler (click to reveal)
The eastern front looks packed with Soviet troops but, with only 18 PP to spend each month, how many of those units are up to strength? I know that the Soviets have activated their HQ:s several times, question is, how much have they rebuilt them? As we're on the verge of April, I've got another two build phases until the ground dries up enough for an assault. That means that I can get most troops into position into position before then. I'll need to rail in a few fresh units from France (some 4 strength infantry corps are still stuck there) and move some units around on the southern front so that Romania and the Ploesti oilfields are secure in case the Soviets decide to threaten them. At 13 PP each month Romania is way too important to lose.

As we're at the end of March there is still at least one full month of mud weather on the eastern front (April is always a mud month, May varies by weather roll). That means that I'll get to build twice: once at the start of April, once at the start of May and that's before the fronts are split into Eastern and Western. I can easily sacrifice an HQ step to get every unit into optimal launching position. After that it's all about grinding the Soviets down. I will not be going for any blitzes and encirclements but for actually destroying the Soviet armies and forcing their HQ:s to activate. The big issue is how strong their triple line is. If it consists of only third rate and understrength units I could be through it in June. If not it will take me until July, especially if I roll mud weather in May.

The good thing is that with German panzers close to Persia, and Turkey on the verge of joining the Axis (I'll start rolling for that as soon as I get Iraq and Persia into the game). The Soviets are on very thin ice. If I can capture Baku through the "back door" of the Persian hinterlands they'll be in deep, deep trouble (HQ:s costing more and having lost 10 vital PP) so I expect a very strong response as soon as I start massing troops for the entry. That's why I need Turkey to supply me with instant cheap infantry. As the Axis player I can command them with my own HQ:s and I can even send the Turkish static units down to guard Egypt (hey, the Mamluks are back!).



In the Middle East it looks like there's nothing hindering the Germans. Apart from the British units down south there are only units in Habbinaya, Abadan and Karachi. This means that Basra and Persia are within reach. But how about German HQ steps, are there enough?
Spoiler (click to reveal)

In order to capture Iraq I'll need one fortnight of preparations, but two would be better as that means I can get the expeditionary Army group G HQ into possition to support the attack. As I intend to launch a revolt and the the Iraqi unit to hold Basra I'll need to knock out the British at Habbanaya in one blow. That means that I'll go for the Iraqi uprising in April, roll for the Persians in May and, hopefully, get to roll for the Turks in June. That's an optimal solutions, I don't expect it to actually go through that way. More likely the Turks will join the Axis in July, August or maybe even September. As long as I get them before the weather turns muddy so I can push on Baku I'm happy. If I fail I'll go in with just the panzers and pray that I won't incur too high losses. But the oil wells in Iraq and Persia should make sure that I can offset any losses incurred - they're worth 20 PP:s to the Axis and it will deprive the British of 10 PP:s. But there's still the Anzac infantry that's (probably) stationed in Abadan. When I capture Basra they should begin starving but they'll be a long time in the killing and Abadan is an important 12 PP:s.

I don't think that Wavell will be able to stop me though. He can't go through the Mediterranean Sea and shipping units through South Africa costs him incredibly much - 2 steps to South Africa and two more (at Med Front cost) to Abadan/Karachi. And I I control Basra there's a 50-50 chance that I'll inflict losses or repulse him as he tries to land. But if he should manage to reinforce I'll send down an infantry and another panzer group south, clear out them from Sudan and attack Aden from behind. I can even take Kenya so he won't have anywhere to land and threaten Alexandria. But that's a secondary priority - first rule of the day: Roll well for Mid East Uprisings!


And here's the next session: AAR: Conquering the World, part 3 - The failure of Barbarossa
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Henrik Reschreiter
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Greatt AAR - really good fun to read!

Keep 'em coming, already looking forward to the next one
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Piero
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Life and death come and go like marionettes dancing on a table. Once their strings are cut, they easily crumble.
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Let me say, extraordinary session report.
Thank you!
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Great AAR.

One rules problem I noticed is that no German units are allowed in Egypt before the Afrika HQ arrives (Section 20.11). Blame it on Hitler not wanting to destroy the British empire I guess, but it is just about impossible within the rules for the panzers to reach Jeruselum before Rommel arrives.

Not sure how much that would have affected your current game but something to watch out for in the future.
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"L'état, c'est moi."
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I'm going to have to get a job in Finland just so I can come play with you guys. Absolutely brilliant.
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Filip W.
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Fizban517 wrote:
Great AAR.

One rules problem I noticed is that no German units are allowed in Egypt before the Afrika HQ arrives (Section 20.11). Blame it on Hitler not wanting to destroy the British empire I guess, but it is just about impossible within the rules for the panzers to reach Jeruselum before Rommel arrives.

Not sure how much that would have affected your current game but something to watch out for in the future.


Crap. Then we started three months early. But that would mean that I'd have saved up 10 dice in points, meaning that three 3 strength panzer corps would have run at the British in February. As the Italian infantry could have stood at El Alamein to allow a quick attack I think that there wouldn't have been too many differences in the outcome: Alexandria falls on February II, Suez Axis on March I, Panzers in Jerusalem on March II, uprising in Syria April I (giving the Axis two spare units to hold the country) and invasion of Iraq on May I as now. The Spanish would have jointed the war slightly later, but that's not a big issue at this point in time. They don't have a major role yet (that comes with the defense of the Western Front in '44).
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Gotthard Heinrici (prev. Graf Strachwitz)
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Wow......this reads better then the best war novel.

I can't wait for the next travel report on sight-seeing in Russia.

(You can leave the WestFront to Kesselring or von Rundstedt while you take the Trans-Siberian railroad to meet Tojo).

Keep 'm coming!





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Alberto Natta
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I am pretty sure the Uk player needs some polishing.
Seelowe is virtually impossible in naval parity, cause German units would just starve to death in UK, even if UK has only militias there (since you cannot rebuilt units in unreliable supply line).

With 2 dices per sea, even with like 6 HQ, 4 of them blitzing, you'd get averagely 2-3 units ashore on UK using 10 HQ steps. Units which in case of combat can get repulsed on a 1-3 Roll due to naval parity.
As long as the UK can keep the ports controlling the seas, the Germans are sort of hopeless safe extreme luck of dices.

Thus if the UK player would have sent his units normally in Afrika, he'd have perfectly held the Alexandria line and buildup way faster than the Axis having up to 3 Alien units in MedFront.
 
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Filip W.
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Cohen wrote:
I am pretty sure the Uk player needs some polishing.
Seelowe is virtually impossible in naval parity, cause German units would just starve to death in UK, even if UK has only militias there (since you cannot rebuilt units in unreliable supply line).


Yes, but we were gambling on Wavell being (overly) cautious, as he was. I played against him when he was playing Germans and he was masterful on the defense in Russia but here his skills and attitudes were more of a hindrance than a help.

If I'd been playing the UK I'd have moved the MedFront Vet armor, mech and possibly HQ to Tunis and rolled against Tripoli before the Germans could arrive. That would force the Axis to respond away from Seelöwe or give up the entire front.

On the other hand, I think that Seelöwe can succeed, it just needs a destroyed BEF and a bit of luck.
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EuroFront is also bit tricky in that the British fleet is abstracted. It can be intimidating for an Allied player new to the system to see swarms of black blocks in France and only half a dozen or so blue blocks in England. In most cases though, the British need do no more than garrison a few key ports and have a modest reserve to make Sea Lion a long shot.
 
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as far as Greek suppy via Turkish straits go........
Craig said at columbia forum.....

'Not via Turkey if Sovs belligerent (tilts Turkey pro Axis). This specific rule takes precedence over the general National Supply via Straits rule in this case (otherwise it would be OK)'

Craig


 
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jack raten
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This is freakin' awesome! Thanks!
 
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Karl Bergström
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My money is on the allies, methinks breaking the Russians in '42 is nigh impossible.
 
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Joonas Abraham
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I agree that tackling the Russians in -42 is very tough. On the other hand if the Axis win in the Medfront and get Turkey on theirside the Russians also become stretched.

In our last game the Axis spent close to 200 PP before capturing Malta but finally prevailed and then succeeded in North Africa also.

In the end the Axis scored a major victory although they never captured Kiev and only captured Minsk in -44

Particularly in -43 the Germans came very close to being totally wiped out in the East and were constantly rail moving rebuilt cadres from the Westfront/Eastfront border to Russia whistle
 
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Filip W.
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Harae wrote:
Wow......this reads better then the best war novel.

I can't wait for the next travel report on sight-seeing in Russia.

(You can leave the WestFront to Kesselring or von Rundstedt while you take the Trans-Siberian railroad to meet Tojo).

Keep 'm coming!


When I'm finished with the Soviets I'll invite Tojo to my Dacha in Moscow. I'll just need to find a good name for it. "Kremlin" sounds so old fashioned...
 
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Quote:
Then we started three months early. But that would mean that I'd have saved up 10 dice in points, meaning that three 3 strength panzer corps would have run at the British in February.

This is all theoretical but I think speed was more important than strength in your position. Three months is a long time for the British to get some units to Egypt. If the British had reinforced Egypt even a little bit the Germans would have been in trouble, with no combat support or ability to rebuild units.

Quote:
As the Italian infantry could have stood at El Alamein to allow a quick attack I think that there wouldn't have been too many differences in the outcome: Alexandria falls on February II, Suez Axis on March I, Panzers in Jerusalem on March II, uprising in Syria April I (giving the Axis two spare units to hold the country) and invasion of Iraq on May I as now

Aside from the possibility of the British reiforcing Egypt, I don't think you would have gotten an uprising in Syria because Greece should have still have been fighting in April...this is assuming I understand the rule about national supply through Turkey....

One thing your game has made me consider is whether the Italians could ever rush Egypt in 1940. The Germans are not allowed in Egypt before Rommel arrives but the Italians could throw their mech, infantry, static, and THQ at the British.
 
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Filip W.
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Fizban517 wrote:
One thing your game has made me consider is whether the Italians could ever rush Egypt in 1940. The Germans are not allowed in Egypt before Rommel arrives but the Italians could throw their mech, infantry, static, and THQ at the British.


It could be done - but it would be a long shot.

Italian strength is 1 HQ, 2 inf, 1 static, 1 mech. That means at least 2 months and at least 35 points without having Tunis basing. And if you've rejected armistice you could have the French capture Tripoli while you were in Egypt. And even at full strength you'd have 4 DF and 6 SF against 3-4 DF and DD.
 
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RedPlanet
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Don't forget you can build the italians in the MF for double the price, when belligerent/ peace time builds.




 
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With the current swift MF development in the game, Barbarossa can be unleashed in 1941 and need not be postponed until 1942. The east front looks fairly solid but 3 panzer corps in the middle east in cooperation with the Turks can spell big problems in the Caucasus. Baku is in jeopardy! HEEELP!

Zhukov
 
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Filip W.
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BlackMass wrote:

Don't forget you can build the italians in the MF for double the price, when belligerent/ peace time builds.


But they only get 20 points (on average). That's enough to build up the HQ or one step on the mech, nothing more.
 
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Filip W.
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wingnut69 wrote:
With the current swift MF development in the game, Barbarossa can be unleashed in 1941 and need not be postponed until 1942. The east front looks fairly solid but 3 panzer corps in the middle east in cooperation with the Turks can spell big problems in the Caucasus. Baku is in jeopardy! HEEELP!

Zhukov


But, Comrade, our countries are at peaces. You wouldn't advocate an armed conflict between our states, would you?
 
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Quote:
It could be done - but it would be a long shot.

Italian strength is 1 HQ, 2 inf, 1 static, 1 mech. That means at least 2 months and at least 35 points without having Tunis basing. And if you've rejected armistice you could have the French capture Tripoli while you were in Egypt. And even at full strength you'd have 4 DF and 6 SF against 3-4 DF and DD.

Italians only have 1 INF. I am assuming the Germans would accept armistice to secure French North Africa. And as your game shows, combat strength for an early rush on Egypt matters less than just getting a few units to Alexandria quickly, before the British do anything.

Definitely a long shot, but it seems possible if the British are being kept busy somewhere else.
 
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Filip W.
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Fizban517 wrote:
Quote:
It could be done - but it would be a long shot.

Italian strength is 1 HQ, 2 inf, 1 static, 1 mech. That means at least 2 months and at least 35 points without having Tunis basing. And if you've rejected armistice you could have the French capture Tripoli while you were in Egypt. And even at full strength you'd have 4 DF and 6 SF against 3-4 DF and DD.

Italians only have 1 INF. I am assuming the Germans would accept armistice to secure French North Africa. And as your game shows, combat strength for an early rush on Egypt matters less than just getting a few units to Alexandria quickly, before the British do anything.

Definitely a long shot, but it seems possible if the British are being kept busy somewhere else.


I meant a 2 strength inf. If you go up against the British mech in Alexandria, and if one assumes that the British don't blow it entirely by not reinforcing it at all, you could get an unlucky 2 hits and get wiped out. So you'd need to reinforce it.

If you march it straight from Tobruk you'd have one production phase to do so but a smart British will see what's happening and hit you right at Sidi Barrani (if he's willing to risk losing the mech) or at Alamein after the first production.

You could go with building an HQ step and an inf step at double extreme, and rush Alexandria with a 3 strenght inf followed by the mech using only OKW steps to roll it (2 supreme to move the mech to Tobruk + 1 supreme to get the info to Sidi Barrani, then 1 supreme for mech to mersa matruth and inf to Alamein). Then, the following production. That would give you the ability to move the mech and inf into combat at Alexandria and still have a step left if everything went to hell.
 
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Craig Besinque
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Re: Rushing Alexandria
I've seen this tried lots (by Tom Oleson, usually against me), with some successes. Definitely more stops, but it can be scary for the Brits.

Part of the deal is how the MF Shipping Losses/Production dierolls go, and how much the WDF can build up before it's engaged. If the Axis can ship over the other Italian mech, they can have up to 6-7 DF firing unsupported (counting 2-3 DF air) against the Alexandria defenses. That's going to average more damage than the Brits can replace, and still be using their MF THQ. With 15 PPs in the MF, the Allies can only rebuilt their SHQ once every two months (7 WF PPs), so shipping help around the cape is only an intermittent help.

Great AAR, fun to read and the diagrams really make it come alive. Well done!

Craig
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Michael Galle
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Great read, thank you!

[quote]
Field Marshal Guderian - Me. Love optimizing and going for high gain plays but very risk avoidant. Liable to commit to small forces for too big issues. Plays Germans.
[/quote]

Hehe and to think that Guderians Motto was "Klotzen, nicht kleckern!". Meaning commit large forces whenever possible.
 
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