Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

After action reports for Commander Europe at War.

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Plaid
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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Wed Jul 29, 2015 8:31 pm

Allied turn.

No attacks against major defensive lines in the east and west. Looks like allied troops are repairing/upgrading across the map.

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Minor action near Leningrad with German airborne destroyed.

More fighting on Sicily and almost unopposed allied advance in France:

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Axis turn:

In the east axis troops stand their ground, preparing better fortifications where possible. Some upgrades distributed to troops aswell.

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In the north German corps retreat towards Leningrad to avoid being cut off supply, if Novgorod falls.

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On Sicily US armour was counterattacked with availiable troops and reduced to 3 steps. New infantry ferried to Messina. It will entrench there and receive defensive leader soon.
Italian airforce upgraded and ready to fly missions next turn.

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In France remaining German troops retreat to Belgium, while additional reserve forces deployed to the area. Romanian fighter was sent to perform suicidal recon mission.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 11:24 am

Still no attacks against main defensive line in the east and west during allied turn.

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We lost corps near Leningrad though.

No picture from France, but you can see situation at axis turn part of the post.

On Sicily allies push forward with mixed results. 2 more transports spotted and paratrooper lands.

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Our uboat in the middle of Atlantic was also sweept somehow. No convoy or intense naval traffic nearby.

Now axis turn:

In the east mostly static defense, just some unit movement here and there.

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Same in France - positions are prepared, though effectiveness of troops in Belgium is poor because of constant allied bombings.

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On Sicily Italians counterattack with availiable air support, destroying armoured unit and damaging mech. Now allies have to clear beaches for their arriving transports.

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Small 25 PP Soviet convoy sunk. Uboats are now heading from this area to Norway, since next Soviet convoy will arrive to late to make any difference.

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2 more corps recruited for Germany. Both German and Italian manpower is near 55-56%, which is high for me for such a late date.

Plaid
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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 11:29 am

Allied turn:

Soviets finally started attacks in Latvia, taking Riga and destroying German corps unit south of city.

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All Luftwaffe fighters participated in interceptions and their performance against Soviet fighters is even, which is not a good thing for us.

Still all quiet in the south:

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France - allies move forward, destroying German corps in Liege. Serious strength and effectiveness losses to allied airpower, as usual.

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Sicily - attacks are focused around Palermo, but garrison holds at 4 steps.

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Axis turn:

Frontline near Riga fixed, with leading Soviet mech destroyed after 2 airstrikes. Rather disappointing Luftwaffe fighter performance once more. Since now all fighters are grounded and will fly only escort missions.

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Nothing happens in the south. For now.

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France - only repairs. Additional corps deployed in forest near Cologne.

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Sicily - with air support Italians manage to destroy Macnaughton's HQ mech.

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German and Italian PPs gone into repairs.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 11:32 am

Allied turn:

In Latvia Soviets keep attacking, destroying 3 German corps.
Also small attack against Hungarian infantry in swamps.

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France - here SS corps near Liege was overwhelmed and allies now reach our main defensive line. One of our corps units was reduced to 4 steps by ground attack, other units are damaged by airpower.

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Sicily: new Free French mech lands, allies slowly advance forward, cutting Palermo from supply.

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And another bunch of US transports spotted in the Atlantic.

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Axis turn:

In the east axis retreat across Niemen river. Also frontline in Pripyat marshes slightly reformed.
Full strength fighters were upgraded (got 6th level in the final air branch tech this turn), while damaged ones were used as one time escorts for TACs, attacking Soviet corps near Brest-Litovsk.
I did not want that infantry attacking Hungarian corps (and forcing quite obvious retreat, ruining frontline here).

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France - more repairs here.

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Sicily - here Leclerc FF mech was reduced into 2 steps.

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As I mentioned above, Germany reached level 6 in air support - last remaining air tech. All 3 labs were sold, 2 corps units were purchased.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:09 pm

It looks like the north front line in Russia is quite a bit weaker than the south front line. From the Niemen river to Brest Litovsk there is no river protection and just a single defense line. Quite easy to make a hole in the line the and then the Russians will rush towards Warsaw. In south there is a double defense line behind a river line. Maybe relocating units to Poland is necessary?

The Siegfried line looks quite vulnerable with garrison units manning the fortresses. If the Allies make a breakthrough before the bad weather then they can cross the Rhine before Christmas and rush towards Hamburg and Berlin.

Seems like this game is now back on the same path as the first game. Main difference is the situation in Italy.

Do you think the quick "collapse" of the Axis is a v3.2 balance issue, Plaid, or just a result of good play by Vokt?

Could it be that the German tech advantage becomes less important due to the new espionage rules? Italy seems to gain the most from this change. Maybe Russia too gets techs a bit too fast. Before they had the number of units, but not techs so they suffered heavy losses in equal fights.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 3:46 pm

Stauffenberg wrote:It looks like the north front line in Russia is quite a bit weaker than the south front line. From the Niemen river to Brest Litovsk there is no river protection and just a single defense line. Quite easy to make a hole in the line the and then the Russians will rush towards Warsaw. In south there is a double defense line behind a river line. Maybe relocating units to Poland is necessary?

The Siegfried line looks quite vulnerable with garrison units manning the fortresses. If the Allies make a breakthrough before the bad weather then they can cross the Rhine before Christmas and rush towards Hamburg and Berlin.

Seems like this game is now back on the same path as the first game. Main difference is the situation in Italy.

Do you think the quick "collapse" of the Axis is a v3.2 balance issue, Plaid, or just a result of good play by Vokt?

Could it be that the German tech advantage becomes less important due to the new espionage rules? Italy seems to gain the most from this change. Maybe Russia too gets techs a bit too fast. Before they had the number of units, but not techs so they suffered heavy losses in equal fights.
About situation in the East - yes, my line in Poland is a bit thin, but it is only temporary one. Axis troops can always retreat to Visla and after it - to Oder. Only 14 tuns left, and of them going to be bad weather.
Also I have massed high tech armour formations in the area, they can deal with any greakthrough. Soviets are low on heavy units themselves (looks like most PPs gone into airforce) and infantry units are not very suited to attack during lategame.
Transition of some units from the South can help anyway.

On Siegfried line I have corps units in key forts (which can be attacked from 3 directions). Losing garrison in fort from only 2 attacks is considered unlikely.

In my opinion balance is shifted towards allies, but only slightly. Increased air unit range helps strategic bombing campaign and espionage helps Soviets to have strong units for 1942 campaign. Starting from 1943 I did not feel any major difference from older ruleset (after Soviets reach OK tech they stop getting espionage bonus, because they are among leaders now).

Vokt played good indeed (apart from African scenario), vs less experienced player results could be better for axis.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Fri Jul 31, 2015 5:33 pm

Good to know. Do you don't think we need to adjust anything for the moment?

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Cybvep » Fri Jul 31, 2015 5:50 pm

Don't know what Plaid's opinion is, but I think that STRATs should gain less survivability from techs. Let's keep in mind that when the Axis stations the FTRs in Germany, that's a boon for the Allies in itself. Therefore, I think that this change is necessary in order to make the campaign costlier for the Allies and encourage the Axis players to station air units in Germany, just as Germany did in RL. And just in case Vokt comes here and says that STRATs should have the same survivability but FTRs should be made cheaper - I think that it would be a mistake, as that change would benefit the Allies as much if not more than the Axis.

Also, IMO the tech gain from espionage should be lowered by ~25-33%. Therefore, the Soviets won't become so advanced so fast, but Italy will be a bit weaker, too. Overall balance won't change much, but campaign's dynamics will be a bit different, with the Soviet steamroller starting a bit later.

BTW I think that the Battle of the Atlantic is balanced as good as it can be.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 6:55 pm

Stauffenberg wrote:Good to know. Do you don't think we need to adjust anything for the moment?
I think its fine. Cybvep has good point about slightly slowing down espionage (though in this game Italy is having good tech mostly not because of espionage, but because it survived into late 1944).

About lowering STRAT survivability, it is delicate matter. With reasonable radar tech STRATs already receive serious flak damage (up to 3 points per mission), until very late game. Together with fighter attacking unescorted STRAT it can make strategic bombing campaign unworthy. And about hexes in escort range - those will be bombed into oblivion, it is never worth for axis to intercept fighters, unless W. Allies have very poor dog fight tech.
Axis also use STRATs for most of the game (well, atleast me) and reducing their survivability will hurt their limited PP pool aswell.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:00 pm

Allied turn:

Offensive launched in several places along eastern front.

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2 German fighters at 3 steps were destroyed by Soviet FTR direct attacks.

Western front holds for now, but heavy damage is sustained, as usual. British paratroopers jump behind Western Wall fort south of Frankfurt.

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More action on Sicily, but nothing decisive.

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Axis turn:

SS armoured units counterattack Soviet breakthroughs both near Kaunas and Lvov. Frontline is restored for now, Soviets lost couple of infantry units, mech was reduced to 1 step and driven into the swamps.

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Next turn bad weather is possible, so we will try to hold a bit more here instead of retreating.

Paratrooper, landed in western Germany was bombed by Luftwaffe Strats (unescorted, sustained rather heavy damage from endgame allied fighters), and then attacked by avaliable ground forces.
Main shock power - SS mech - had to attack across the river. Probably it explains, why unit survived at 2 steps.

Battered 2 steps corps retreat to Essen, while fresh one deployed on its spot. There is no retreat from this defensive line - once allies break all 3 rows of units, they will walk freely all over Germany.

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Italian front - no offensive actions this time, Italians take pause and repair all their units, including airforce. I had to sell both Italian general labs to affort this repairs.

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One more corps purchased for Germany after all repair bills were paid.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:02 pm

Allied turn:

Eastern front:

Soviets attack in direction of Brest-Litovsk. Several corps unit lost. Airborne division jumps to destroy depleted German corps in Polish forsts.

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Western front:

Newly deployed corps near Cologne was destroyed by allied attacks. One of fort section garrions was reduced to 4 steps.

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Italy:

Italian mech was reduced to 1 step. 2 transports with FF infantry and US transport (probably mech) are around Sicily.

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Axis turn:

Fair weather rolled in all zones.

Eastern front: small counterattack north of Brest-Litovsk destroyed Soviet corps after two airstrikes. Manstein HQ armour unit rolled over Soviet airborne (it was reduced to 2 steps and finished off by mech).

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In the South we retreat to Romanian border and Lvov. Probably some troops can be redeployed from this secondary scenario to other areas.

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Western front:

British paratrooper was finished off, depleted units were repaired. Another reserve corps deployed SE of Cologne.

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Sicily:

After TAC airstrike (which caused 3 damage out of 4 totally needed) Italian mech finished off LeClerc's unit. Also repairs and unit movement here and there. Since allies turn after turn intercept my Italian fighter with badly depleted unit, it losses only 1 step per mission.
Looking at w.Allied and Soviet fighter performance in other fronts, I think that single intercept by full strength and high effectiveness fighter would be devastating for Italian unit, causing 6-7 steps of damage.
So its good that allies operate with depleted fighters here and I can afford repairs.

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2 more corps purchased for Germany, finally going below 50% manpower.

Plaid
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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:05 pm

Allied turn:

In the east Soviets finally sent forward their armour units, overrunning positions north of Brest-Litovsk.

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No attacks in the South.

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In the west no units were destroyed, but several forts barely held at 1-3 steps.

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In Sicily allies finally pulled off successful operation, landing more units and cutting supply for our troops in the south of island.

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Axis turn:

Fair has rolled all across the board again.

Germany discovered level 6 tank destroyers, so all armour labs were sold (last remaining blitzkrieg upgrade is far away at 49%).
Many armour units received this upgrade immediately, now they are supposed to have decisive advantage over Sovier ARM units.

In the east while most of armour units upgrade, we launch counterattack against leading tank army and destroy it.
Soviet battleship shelling Helsinki was torpedoed by uboat.

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We are starting to run out of reserves. This turn 2 Bulgarian corps from Greece were railed to this positions.

In the west only usual repairs and upgrades. Most badly damaged units leave forts so fresh ones can enter. As a downside those are going to be destroyed by airstrikes, but holding ground is more important.

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In Sicily Italian tryed to counterattack with TAC support, but failed to force US mech to retreat. As a last measure paratrooper from Reggio was dropped to restore supply line.

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Another corps recruited for Germany and couple of garrisons.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:09 pm

Allied turn:

In the east offensive action was focused in Brest-Litovsk area, where we lost several units, but city itself held.

SS armour was also scratched a bit, being reduced to 6 steps (probably by bombers).

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Suddenly Soviets opened brand new front, landing paratroopers and corps near Helsinki. I thought it was just garrison transport to shield battleship.

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Western front - another hex was lost, this time one south of Arnhem. American paratroopers lands in Holland.

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Italy - another allied unit lands, destroying Italian mech and cutting 9 step corps out of supply. Looks like nothing can be done about it this time.

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Axis turn:

Mud rolled in both eastern and central weather zone, which is good for our cause.

In the East small retreat executed from Kaunas area, while fresh panzer unit destroyed 7 step Soviet armour after 2 TAC airstrikes (fighter vs fighter casualties are rather low at mud)

Soviet Batlic Sea Fleet battleship was sunk by uboat attack and 2 strategic bombers hits (both unescorted). Together with muddy weather it can help Helsinki to hold.

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In the west reserves are rallied from other fronts (2 corps, Bulgarian garrison from Greece and Hoth HQ mech from Poland). Paratrooper in Holand must be destroyed, it compromises entire position.

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Sicily - only repairs here, we accept loss of trapped corps, as nothing can be done about it. Good news are that seemingly all allied units in this scenario landed on Sicily - no more transports can be seen.
And they will stay there until they clear island completely - mainland Italy is relatively safe.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Fri Jul 31, 2015 8:02 pm

Remember that you will still win the game if you can keep Messina to prevent Italy from surrendering. Then it's not enough for the Allies to take Hamburg and Berlin.

I think the situation now is quite a bit better for the Germans than 6 months ago. The Russians struggle to advance and the Western Allies are bogged down at the Siegfried line. If I had been Vokt I would have launched a naval invasion in Holland / western Germany to draw Axis forces from the Rhine area. This way the Allies can get a breakthrough.

I would probably have done the same in the Baltic Sea. Land units west of Konigsberg to force the German panzers to clear up the beach head instead of going after armor spearheads.

If Plaid doesn't get unlucky with the weather I think he has a fair chance winning this game. :)

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Mon Aug 03, 2015 5:29 am

Allied turn:

Some attacks across eastern front. Croatian garrison in Kaunas was destroyed and city falls to Red Army.
Helsinki also attacked, but holds for now. Also attack against Bulgarian corps near Lvov.

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Western front - allies destroyed 7 step corps SE of Antwerp, but did not occupie the hex.

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Also large mass of French partisans together with 2 British corps are spotted in southern France. Looks like they are ready to open new front against Italy there.

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Usual action on Sicily:

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Axis turn:

Mud weather in the center zone, but winter in the north.

In Finalnd depleted Helsinki garrison was swapped for full strength one and corps from Petrozavodsk railed to Turku.

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In northern Poland we retreat another row of hexes.

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No retreats in the south.

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Just repairs in Italian front. Sold both Italian air labs this turn and used PPs to purchase defensive leader for Messina.

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In the west notable even was destruction of US paratrooper in Holland, as intended.

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2 more corps and 1 garrison purchased for Germany.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Mon Aug 03, 2015 5:33 am

Allied turn:

Eastern front - Soviet troops enter Brest-Litovsk and push in Carpathian region, where several units including Heinrici's HQ corps were lost.

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In Finland Helsinki is encircled with swapped out garrison being forced to retreat:

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In Holland another unit destroyed and US armour reached Rhine near Arnhem.

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In Sicily Italian airborne division was finally destroyed, with Palermo being cut off supply again.

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Axis turn:

Weather is winter in both central and northern zones.

In the east retreat is executed from Brest-Litovsk area towards Warsaw. Plan is to man Wisla defensive line from Danzig to Krakow.

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In Finland attack was launched on unsupplied Soviet corps.

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Sicily - just repairs. Badoglio defensive leader assigned to Messina.

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In southern France British units slowly march through mountainous hexes. Its time to prepare defenses in Turin area.

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In Holland leading US armour was bombed by TACs (unescorted, but little interception damage because of bad weather), which reduced unit to only 3 steps. Then it was finished off by single infantry attack from Antwerp.
Vacant hex is occupied by dutch volunteer garrison unit.

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2 more corps recruited for Germany and 1 for Italy. Vokstrum garrisons arrived this turn and were deployed in German cities.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Mon Aug 03, 2015 5:37 am

Allied turn:

This time massive offensive occured in Eastern Prussia and Poland, with several units destroyed and damaged.
Notably, elite I SS Panzerkorps unit was reduced to only 2 steps. Another armour unit was reduced to 4 steps.

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In the south Soviets also push north of Cernauti rail depot.

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In Finland Helsinki was bombed into red production, but since it is capital, it still provides its 3 supply.

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Western front - allies failed to destroy Dutch volunteer unit, reducing it to 1 step.

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French-Italian border:

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On Sicily Palermo was ruined and probably going to fall next turn.

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Axis turn:

Weather - winter in both zones, as it should be in January.

In the east we retreat now, almost reaching planned defensive lines.

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Frontline near Yasi reformed in the south, as I don't want those German corps units to be flanked and trapped.
Also retreat in Bessarabia.

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In Finland Helsinki defenders were reinforced and Soviet corps keep being attacked.

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Just repairs in both Holland and Sicily:

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Mon Aug 03, 2015 5:40 am

Last 1945 campaign is starting and here are some statistics:

Casualties

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German research - reached anti tank level 5 this turn and all labs were sold.

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Italian research - reached fixed defenses level 6 this turn and all labs were sold.

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Allied turn:

In Poland Soviets move forward, but not as fast as they want, because of ZoC mostly.

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Minor allied progress in the south.

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In Finland Finnish corps was badly depleted and forced to retreat Helsinki holds at 6 steps.

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In Holland expected loss of Dutch volunteer unit.

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In Sicily Palermo still holds at 1 step. Transport spotted near Calabria.

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Axis turn:

Weather conditions - its mud in the center and winter/SW in the north.

Western and Eastern fronts now fit single picture. Wisla defensive line is manned.

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In the south new axis minor mechs are being reinforced, while Chisinau area was abandoned, forming new defensive line.

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Helsinki garrison was reinforced.

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Reasonable force of 2 corps and several garrisons rallied to defend northern Italy. I still have my Italian armour unit in reserve.

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Italian destroyer tryed to escape Nice, which can fall any moment now, but was ambushed by US sub.

In Sicily all defenders were repaired, transport was sunk by TAC airstrike followed by sub attack.

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All German PPs gone into repairing units (mostly tanks - those are expensive). Italian PPs left after repairs were saved.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Tue Aug 04, 2015 8:18 pm

Allied turn:

Multiple attacks in the east and west, but no units were destroyed and no hex lost.

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In Finland Helsinki is keep being attacked. New transport spotted.

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In the south mostly movement without attacks, but Romanian garrison was pushed back to Constanta.

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In French-Italian border things are slow.

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Same on Sicily. We lost Palermo but Messina will hold for few more turns.

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Axis turn:

Fair weather rolled in central zone, so succesfull allied attacks across the board are expected now.

Troops were repaired where possible (I ran out of PPs to repair everything). Soviet armour unit near Wisla was bombed and finished off by panzerkorps,
guard armour was also bombed and reduced to 7 strength.

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Helsinki defenders repaired once more. One Soviet transport (garrison) was sunk only to spot another one. Depleted German DD was sent to attack that transport, taking single step.
Uboat was not able to attack because of Soviet sub blocking hex adjacent to transport.

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Axis minor mechs were repaired to full strength in the south and are expected to hold for some time.

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Repairs in Italy. Naval assets are redeployed closer to action and ready to be sent into combat, if needed.

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German and Italian PPs gone into repairs.

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Re: Plaid vs Vokt CEAW GS 3.2 beta AAR -- rematch

Post by Plaid » Tue Aug 04, 2015 8:22 pm

Allied turn:

Western allies finally breached Siegfried line and supported their success with airborne opearion. Units taken reasonable casualties when landing.

Soviet troops crossed Wisla south of Warsaw, several units (including 2 armour and 1 mech) were badly depleted.

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In Romania Soviets also push forward, approaching Constanta and Budapest.

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In Finland Helsinki defenders reduced to 2 steps. Unit also got 4 stars of experience.

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On Sicily Italian corps units are holding for now.

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Nice was liberated by French partisans, no direct threat for Turin yet.

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Axis turn:

Fair weather in central zone (meaning all 4 remaining allied turn are going to be fair). At least mud in the east, where all Soviet airfields are placed.

Axis troops retreat from Warsaw area. In the west US paratrooper was counterattacked, but survives. Area was flooded by garrisons, so allies can't exploit breach in our defenses before they clear it all.

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In the south general retreat is in progress. Also 3 step Soviet corps was destroyed by single attack near Cluj.

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In Finland garrison was repaired back to 5. It might hold for now because of muddy weather.

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Units also repaired in Turin front and on Sicily.

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2 more garrisons purchased for Germany after paying for repairs.

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