Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

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conanthelibrarian6372
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Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by conanthelibrarian6372 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:28 pm

I made it through a previous playthrough till early 1942 a few years ago, but have decided to start from scratch.
I have one unit of Airborne and am currently a few battles into the 1940 campaign. Only play on Colonel
Made sense to use it on Eben-Emael, but not sure how/when to sue them in a battle. Issue for me is:

1. Most all cities/important capture points are guarded, and if my more than 1 INF. unit, they are toast.
2. Enemy fighters are a real danger, but if I wait until I have solid air superiority, seems I've pushed in enough on the ground to not need them as much.
3. I could use them as suicide squads to help hold a bridgehead I guess until I could secure it, but again it would have to be undefended to the most part and I hate losing units like that.
4. I could have 2 or even three units of them to drop in force to help each other survive, but that is a lot to give up in my OOB.

So hit me with your superior knowledge about how to use these guys effectively.

Second part:
I can never decide whether to invest in AA units. here's my thoughts:
1. 88's: nice dual purpose, but can be hard to maneuver with blitzkrieg tactics to put them in a position to be used.
2. Mobile AA: solves the maneuvering issue, but once air superiority is achieved, they become useless.
3. Neither: Could just let fighters deal with enemy planes, but it is expensive since they will take return damage, and also prevents them from escorting my own Bombers around the map.

So again, hit me with your ideas/thoughts/opinions on AA in the grand campaign.

Thanks ahead of time for all the help!

stormbringer3
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by stormbringer3 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:32 pm

I've two Fallschirmjager units and have been very happy with them. I drop them together and I'm very careful where and when I deploy them. I use them for end of map objectives. I deploy them as land units in the city fights where they are a good sub for Pioneers. I farmed defense heroes for them. When I get to the 1943 upgrade chance I might change then to another infantry class unit as I've read that a lot of the later scenarios are defensive in nature.

conanthelibrarian6372
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by conanthelibrarian6372 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 1:18 pm

Thanks storm. Seems though by holding them back all scenario, you are losing a lot of force from not having two tanks/arty/whatever being used all those turns.

Not trying to say its a bad decision, just trying to think through your answer.

But it could be the difference between victory and not if you could put two para's behind the enemy and take out arty or whatever to make your attacks successful.

stormbringer3
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by stormbringer3 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 4:11 pm

I don't hold them back that long IMO. Usually, I can find usually a "safe" spot within the first 1/4 of the scenario. I then use them to start taking objective hexes that generate Prestige Points. My style of play is to move the main force perhaps slower than others letting the AI attack me which it likes to do. With the Fallschirmjager I don't have to move as fast to get those end map points.

AnalogGamer
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by AnalogGamer » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:55 pm

My personal experience is that Paras can be made to work in pairs unsupported. A single is more or less useless for anything less than very specific circumstances. I stopped using them because I didn't see the value in suicide squads. It wasn't them.... it was me.

Picked them back up and really put them through the paces, and found that they are wonderful. They not only survive, they kick @ss.

To see real value and enjoyment from airborne operations, one should commit to it. Make them part of your strategic outlook. Messing around with a pair is useful and can be fun once one gets the hang of the opportunities when they occur. That is just a side-show.

Here is my suggestion for enhanced utility. Use three. One should have a +1 spot. +1 Defense helps when you get a bad drop. Experience is a must. Costly to do, but I recommend turning experienced early troops into your Fallschirmjager force. As long as they survive their first real operation, they should pile more stars on quickly.

The absolute key turns out to be that 75mm air-transportable artillery unit, that another member here suggested to me. +1 Move and +1 Range is ideal. +2 Move is a unicorn. If you have to burn a hero'ed-up 17cm to get it... do it. Costs zero to downgrade. No transport to buy either.

That little bit of support is all the difference in the world. It shaves just enough off attacking units that the paras get an opportunity to turn the tables. It can attack just enough to turn a "retreat" into a "dead" once under direct fire from the Paras. The little pop-gun is a wonder in that situation. Who would have thunk it?

It is a four-core investment that needs heavy escort to target or stealth, and careful target choice. It is a choice of challenge really. Do you want that responsibility? :) It can pay off big, or it could get very ugly very quickly.

Personally, I adore them and will go to four, and two 75s if possible.

-----

The 88mm AAA can switch to an awesome gun. But you have to know how to employ it just so take get full use from it, but not lose it while mounted. +1 or 2 Move and a patient advance negates that issue.

I use a single 7/1 S/P AAA. Main reason... Fighter Trap. Show the enemy a nice juicy air target. Put the 7/1 behind it, with a 109e on top of the 7/1. Blap. One less enemy plane by the end of next turn. It works over and over again. As the center of a mobile group, it defends enough that even though the enemy may swarm the group, they do much less damage. The 7/1 gains stars quickly this way. Best rate of fire of the S/Ps. The enemy planes are now grouped up nicely for my fighters next turn. Cheap. Over is cheap. Replacements are cheap. It doesn't need upgrading. The Willy's Jeep of AAA.

A single core that is useful early every battle. Force multiplier.

proline
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by proline » Fri Feb 23, 2018 6:15 am

There are many other threads worth checking out that deal with the use of jumpers. Here's one recent example http://www.slitherine.com/forum/viewtop ... 21&t=82372

sn0wball
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by sn0wball » Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:02 am

AnalogGamer wrote:Here is my suggestion for enhanced utility. Use three. One should have a +1 spot. +1 Defense helps when you get a bad drop. Experience is a must. Costly to do, but I recommend turning experienced early troops into your Fallschirmjager force. As long as they survive their first real operation, they should pile more stars on quickly
I was about to suggest using three, too. I have used them to take airfields and non-victory city hexes on big maps, ideally on the border of the map. The spotting hero is vital to avoid unnescessary and hopeless combats. During the GC, I have even made Oleh Din a Para. Good prior air recon is vital, too. Recon Rudel in a Me110 served me well for this.

If you take an airfield and the AI does not make a serious attempt to retake it, you can even fly in non-airborne troops. If it makes a serious attempt to take the airfield, you can withdraw - by air or or out of sight. Be sure to exploit the diversion you thus created with your gorund troops. Once the AI has moved its troops and messed up any semblance of a useful formation, it will never regroup usefully.

Of course, the usage of this depends on the map and the scenario. Don´t field them everytime. Still, a powerful para unit can be used on the ground in a defensive scenario as well. Also, it takes consicerable resources, especially core slots. Paras are rather cheap in prestige. Is it the most effective way to use your core slots ? I have no idea. But surely it is a fun one - dangerous and exciting as well.

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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by CroCop96 » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:46 pm

I always use two or three airborne regiments, as I love the Fallschirmjager in general.

Two important things to consider:

Firstly, don't paradrop them in every mission. On smaller and medium-sized maps, deploy them as elite infantry. Make a battlegroup of them, 1 Panzer regiment and some artillery.

Secondly, don't paradrop them too far away - make sure that you can link up with them within several turns. For example: Eben Emael - self explanatory; GC41 East Minsk - drop them behind Brest, attack the enemy arty and AA, use Stukas to destroy enemy armor, break through North of Brest with Char B1's.

I'll always cross-upgrade my infantry up to 1942. Defense heroes - Fallschirmjager or Kavallerie. Movement, initiative - Grenadiere, Pioniere. It's cheap and it lets you use the units to their full potential.
I had a Kavallerie regiment with +3 defense once, they were really good for a long time...

I'm all for 88's, and you don't need mobile AA until 1942, in my opinion.
Air superiority is great, but on higher difficulties, the AI will usually deploy several more waves of either scripted or bought airplanes. Better to have 88's than to rely completely on fighters, which at that point might be spread out too far.
The 88's are great with their dual mode, with a movement hero they become fantastic and you can use them all the way to the end.

I don't agree with turning Oleh Dir into Fallschirmjager, it's overkill and will likely end up in the unit getting slaughtered, penetrating that deep into enemy territory where there is a French/Soviet tank division waiting behind every hill... either that, or you'll move it carefully and just 1-2 hexes more than you normally would, which is a waste. So, Dir remains a Gebirgsjager (in that case, he still has a lot of movement points, but he'll be moving safely together with the rest of the army); or becomes a Pionier or Grenadier.

proline
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by proline » Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:03 pm

CroCop96 wrote:I don't agree with turning Oleh Dir into Fallschirmjager, it's overkill and will likely end up in the unit getting slaughtered, penetrating that deep into enemy territory where there is a French/Soviet tank division waiting behind every hill... either that, or you'll move it carefully and just 1-2 hexes more than you normally would, which is a waste. So, Dir remains a Gebirgsjager (in that case, he still has a lot of movement points, but he'll be moving safely together with the rest of the army); or becomes a Pionier or Grenadier.
Agreed. Turning him into any kind of fast unit, also including horseman or biker, just invites you to lose him. He can easily get really far away from your main army and, due to his strength, early on that works for him. You get used to using him that way and then in 1943 he gets surrounded and picked off because you sent him ahead to chase that enemy unit that had 1 point of strength left.

Yrfin
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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by Yrfin » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:05 pm

In vanilla/GC Fallschirmjager useless.
For Real use must be redisigned. Hide/Fast Move/Highest Ini.
And of coz Maps/Scenrious Design must be prepared for this type of Units.

Malta and Cyprus are not enought :(
Shoot first. Ask questions later.

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Re: Using Airborne/AA in Grand Campaign

Post by hugh2711 » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:32 pm

I usuall run with three in the GC. Two with transport and one disposable for dropping to far away places to get a free capturable unit. The two with transport I find are quite tough, can often sub for pioneres and are very mobile. With a couple of heroes the are awesome.
As for AA I usually have one main 88 which I train up to heroes, one standby 88 (without transport) and one mobile Sdkfz7/1 which I nuture up to hero status.

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