GC Barbarossa to Berlin

Battle Reports & After Action Reports (AAR's)

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Cerberus51
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GC Barbarossa to Berlin

Post by Cerberus51 » Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:09 am

Hi, some of you may remember I was fairly active here a couple of years ago, even did a couple of AAR's. I dropped out for health reasons* and didn't touch PzC for about 18 months but got back into the game recently. I'm currently part way through GC 41 and decided I would like to do an AAR documenting my efforts.

This is a blind playthrough starting after the first scenario of Barbarossa - Minsk. I have not played the GC beyond this point and have avoided looking at other AAR's. So feel free to comment, criticize, advise or whatever but no spoilers please. I am only playing at General difficulty, partly because I get fed up if I have to micromanage and think too deeply about each move or attack. At this level you can usually get away with some mistakes.

I'm not up to making videos so it will be traditional replays zipped and attached to the post about that scenario.

*(I don't want to say anything about the "health reasons" but I have an illness which affects my moods and perceptions and sometimes I can be harsh or unintentionally offensive. If that happens in this thread I apologise now. This is not an excuse, only an explanation).

Anyway, on with the AAR.
Last edited by Cerberus51 on Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Cerberus51
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:44 am

A few things about where we are starting from.

All opposition has been crushed, DV's in every scenario of 39, 40 and 41 (so far). Minsk was total annihilation of the enemy - all flags captured and all Russian units destroyed. I only have around 9000 prestige but have about 70 units plus the 4 SE possible. I am going to go East for 42 (I may come back and play West eventually) and assume I will lose units later on so have been trying to accumulate
some experienced spares. If things get desperate on prestige I may have to do some disbanding.

Infantry - 6 Gebirgs (5 with trucks plus Oleh Dir), 6 Pioniere (all with 250 halftracks, the 251 isn't worth the extra prestige) and 2 SE Gebirgs (with trucks).

Panzer - 6 PzIIIH, 6PzIVFand 2 SE PzIIIH.

Recon - 6 Sdkfz 232.

Artillery - 4 towed 15cm (250 halftracks) and 6 Sturmpanzer.

AA/AD - 3 Sdkfz 7/1's and 3 88's.

Air - 8 Bf109F, 4 Ju87, 6 Me110D and 4 Ju88.

I have just bought 2 Kradschutzen. I have never used this unit before but they are cheap and look useful for seizing undefended airfields and town/city hexes. I found them troublesome as opposition in previous British/US campaigns so we will see. If they are useful I may get a further 2. As the cost of panzers and air units rises these may be helpful in offsetting the soft cap.

I will definitely buy 2 FW190A's, possibly 4, to complete my fighter force.

I may get a couple of Wurframen as I found the Calliope very useful in backing up units against infantry attacks in the US campaigns.

I don't envisage buying anything else. I assume there are more heroes to be awarded so that will provide a few more units. Apart from that it will mostly be upgrades. I don't intend to overstrength if I can avoid it (except Uber Rudel).

Deployment save attached. I hope to complete the next scenario over this weekend so it should be up soon.
Deployment.zip
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by braccada » Fri Apr 12, 2019 4:29 pm

Hi! great to see another blind run. That is always most interesting. Since I am doing the same, but a couple of maps ahead of you, I will definitely follow this AAR. So see you and goo luck!
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Sun Apr 14, 2019 7:31 pm

Smolensk 41

8562 prestige

The plan is to allocate 25% of my 33 deployment slots to air units and the rest to 3 battlegroups. 1st group goes N to Kpynki then Vitebsk. 2nd group heads for Orsha and 3rd for Mogilev. Second phase all available units converge on Smolensk. I considered advancing the Mogilev group eastwards across the Dnieper but decided against as I assume there are Soviet units in that area and intended only to hold Mogilev.

Everything came off as expected during the early turns. Turn 3 and two heroes turned up, Wirnsberger as a Gebirgs/251 and Rondorf in a PzIIC. The PzIIC is useless so Rondorf needs an immediate upgrade (I give him a PzIVF). I realised I had not upgraded Rudel and the limited fuel of the Ju87B meant frequent refuelling trips back to friendly airfields. Fortunately I had (unintentionally) deployed my only Ju87R as my second Stuka - so that one was not a problem. Rudel is awesome. I watched a TV documentary a couple of days ago on the German aces of WW2. Mostly the fighter aces but Rudel was included with the comment that he was rated as worth a division of troops. His record suggests that was not an exaggeration.

The Soviets initially attacked in small groups, only the few T34's really troubling my panzers and they were quickly destroyed by airpower and panzers.

After deciding not to advance beyond the Dnieper on turn 8 the Soviet units across the river decided to commit suicide by attacking Mogilev across a bridge hex covered by an 88 backed up by a 15cm artillery. After eliminating the attackers I did advance to try and pick up a few more flags and to try and grab the airfield S of Smolensk.

By turn 12 almost all Soviet forces west of Smolensk had been destroyed including the force of tanks, infantry and Katyushas west of the city. The rest of the scenario was mainly grinding down the defenders of Smolensk and taking the last objectives. I took the opportunity to bomb the Soviet infantry south of the Dnieper to gain experience for my air units but these infantry are not able to cross an unbridged major river without a bridge engineer. Use of airpower against Smolensk was limited as the defenders included 3 85mm AD. These kept switching between AD and AT so I took a chance and attacked them with air units while they were in AT mode - when their air attack is zero. They did switch back to AD and damage a 109 but the airstrikes were enough to enable my units to take the last two objectives on turn 17/21 for a DV.

So now I have to choose between Kiev and Leningrad?
Attachments
Smolensk41.zip
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by loganfive » Mon Apr 15, 2019 5:41 pm

Cerberus51 wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:44 am
A few things about where we are starting from.

All opposition has been crushed, DV's in every scenario of 39, 40 and 41 (so far). Minsk was total annihilation of the enemy - all flags captured and all Russian units destroyed. I only have around 9000 prestige but have about 70 units plus the 4 SE possible. I am going to go East for 42 (I may come back and play West eventually) and assume I will lose units later on so have been trying to accumulate
some experienced spares. If things get desperate on prestige I may have to do some disbanding.

Infantry - 6 Gebirgs (5 with trucks plus Oleh Dir), 6 Pioniere (all with 250 halftracks, the 251 isn't worth the extra prestige) and 2 SE Gebirgs (with trucks).

Panzer - 6 PzIIIH, 6PzIVFand 2 SE PzIIIH.

Recon - 6 Sdkfz 232.

Artillery - 4 towed 15cm (250 halftracks) and 6 Sturmpanzer.

AA/AD - 3 Sdkfz 7/1's and 3 88's.

Air - 8 Bf109F, 4 Ju87, 6 Me110D and 4 Ju88.

I have just bought 2 Kradschutzen. I have never used this unit before but they are cheap and look useful for seizing undefended airfields and town/city hexes. I found them troublesome as opposition in previous British/US campaigns so we will see. If they are useful I may get a further 2. As the cost of panzers and air units rises these may be helpful in offsetting the soft cap.

I will definitely buy 2 FW190A's, possibly 4, to complete my fighter force.

I may get a couple of Wurframen as I found the Calliope very useful in backing up units against infantry attacks in the US campaigns.

I don't envisage buying anything else. I assume there are more heroes to be awarded so that will provide a few more units. Apart from that it will mostly be upgrades. I don't intend to overstrength if I can avoid it (except Uber Rudel).

Deployment save attached. I hope to complete the next scenario over this weekend so it should be up soon.

Deployment.zip
I think you have way more units than you will ever be able to use. The maximum number of units you can deploy in any scenario is 50, and that's only at one scenario (Berlin Redux). The limit for all the other scenarios is at 45 or less.

If you have 6 non-SE tank units and 4 fighters at this stage you should not need to purchase any more for balance of the Grand Campaign.

You will find that once you get to 1943, the soft cap and the Soviet AA units will make it really costly to maintain a large air force.

I would also disband the SE infantry and accept only tanks as SE units. Tanks get very expensive later on and SE units do not count towards the cap.

Also, if you get a couple of tank destroyer units (I think the Panzerjaeger is all you have available through 1941), they are very useful down the road for dealing with Soviet armour while staying under the cap. Because they are classified as AT units they get +2 Hard Attack for every star of experience. Once you get them up to 3 or 4 stars they are very helpful and inexpensive units to have.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:27 am

loganfive wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 5:41 pm

I think you have way more units than you will ever be able to use. The maximum number of units you can deploy in any scenario is 50, and that's only at one scenario (Berlin Redux). The limit for all the other scenarios is at 45 or less.

If you have 6 non-SE tank units and 4 fighters at this stage you should not need to purchase any more for balance of the Grand Campaign.

You will find that once you get to 1943, the soft cap and the Soviet AA units will make it really costly to maintain a large air force.

I would also disband the SE infantry and accept only tanks as SE units. Tanks get very expensive later on and SE units do not count towards the cap.

Also, if you get a couple of tank destroyer units (I think the Panzerjaeger is all you have available through 1941), they are very useful down the road for dealing with Soviet armour while staying under the cap. Because they are classified as AT units they get +2 Hard Attack for every star of experience. Once you get them up to 3 or 4 stars they are very helpful and inexpensive units to have.
I think you are right, I have far too many units. What I was worried about is having a reserve of units with 3 stars that I can use in 44/45 to replace losses. Trying to introduce a green unit at that stage would be hopeless. I rarely lose units so I may be being too cautious on this point. I have already decided not to buy any more units with the exception of some SP anti-tank. I was intending to leave that until 42 as I really have no confidence in the Panzerjaeger. Hopefully buying 4 as soon as a decent StugIII becomes available and working them hard will get them enough experience to handle the later campaigns. I don't like towed AT and if I wanted a towed unit to fight tanks then better to use my 88's to give them experience.

As far as SE units are concerned I have 4, the maximum for this campaign. I have kept the 2 SE Gebirgs because using them has meant being able to deploy 2 fewer core infantry in each scenario and so deploy 2 additional non-infantry units. With hindsight I should have disbanded them as soon as decent SE panzers became available.

I think I will review my core after I finish Zhitomir. Most of my infantry have gained their first hero so it is probably a good time to disband any that have weak or irrelevant heroes and concentrate on the units with better heroes. I will take a closer look at the SE Gebirgs and will disband one for the next scenario and the other as I get another SE unit. Hopefully there will be time to get a SE panzer awarded before the end of this campaign. Likewise with air units. I have 8 fighters and should probably drop 2 then decide in 42 whether to stick with 109's or bite on full cost upgrades to 190's. I have more tac bombers than I will need and should probably cut to 6 now and eventually to 4, keeping uber Rudel and Lendt. I envisage eventually having them all upgraded to 190's. I have 4 Ju88's and always intended to go down to 2 at most.

Thanks for the comments.
Last edited by Cerberus51 on Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by PeteMitchell_2 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:43 am

Cerberus51 wrote:
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:27 am
What I was worried about is having a reserve of units with 3 stars that I can use in 44/45 to replace losses. Trying to introduce a green unit at that stage would be hopeless. I rarely lose units so I may be being too cautious on this point.
It is very wise to have some experienced reserves, especially when you are playing blind and when you haven't played GC East 44/45 at all yet… good luck, you may need it! :mrgreen:

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:52 pm

Kiev or Leningrad? I have no idea apart looking at the campaign tree in the library and a vague recollection that Novgorod could be quite messy in PG2. So let's try Kiev - which brings us to...

Zhitomir


30 deployment slots, 11673 prestige, 18 turns.

I don't have a lot to say here. I started with my usual default plan - 3 battlegroups or roughly equal size and commit around 25% of the available slots to air units. Advance the 3 groups N to S. Pretty uneventful. As with Minsk and Smolensk the Soviet units are not attacking in large numbers, infantry is numerous but not particularly effective, little artillery and not that much AD or air units. The early T-34 and KV-1 tanks don't have particularly good attack figures and my panzers are dealing with them.

DV on turn 12. I think I will turn the difficulty up a level.

If I didn't know better I would say it is too easy. But I do know that will change.
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by braccada » Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:32 pm

I do not think it will be a problem to increase the difficulty level. The only difference will be, that your units get experience a bit slower. At this stage of the game that should not be a big factor anymore and you seem to crush them anyways :)
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 4:26 pm

Yes, it is a bit easy at the moment. I do start to struggle at Rommel/Guderian/Manstein but am usually OK at Fieldmarshal.

I have come to realise that AAR's are better done as videos. I find it quite difficult to follow replays at times, even for my own battles! So I will be taking a few days to learn how to do screen captures, edit the result and get it online and linked to this thread. We shall see how it goes.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:46 pm

I have decided to come back to this thread as I have continued playing (currently just finished 43 and about to start 44 at Korsun Pocket). I had left it as I did not find I had much to say about the scenarios and have not managed to carry out my intention to learn how to produce videos (getting sidetracked by other things happens a lot at the moment). The main reason I am picking it up again is that I am finding I have questions about which units are most effective as well as tactics and was in danger of hijacking RVallant's diverse force thread. So I will ask here as I play and see how it goes.

I am playing at Field Marshal with limited dice. DV's throughout (so far). I have around 75 units in my core but at Korsun can only deploy 33 plus SE. I am at 32000 prestige and everything is upgraded at the moment.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by goose_2 » Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:52 pm

Cerberus51 wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:46 pm
I have decided to come back to this thread as I have continued playing (currently just finished 43 and about to start 44 at Korsun Pocket). I had left it as I did not find I had much to say about the scenarios and have not managed to carry out my intention to learn how to produce videos (getting sidetracked by other things happens a lot at the moment). The main reason I am picking it up again is that I am finding I have questions about which units are most effective as well as tactics and was in danger of hijacking RVallant's diverse force thread. So I will ask here as I play and see how it goes.

I am playing at Field Marshal with limited dice. DV's throughout (so far). I have around 75 units in my core but at Korsun can only deploy 33 plus SE. I am at 32000 prestige and everything is upgraded at the moment.
Sounds like you have a pretty good handle on things...I am trying to understand the specifics of your question. Could you be more specific about what you are asking?
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:24 am

goose_2 wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:52 pm

Sounds like you have a pretty good handle on things...I am trying to understand the specifics of your question. Could you be more specific about what you are asking?
I'm not entirely sure TBH. I just have this feeling I am missing something (or several somethings) quite important.

I have some specific questions about force mix for the GC East so perhaps it is best to start there.

Infantry and panzers - how many of each and what ratio to use? I currently have 4 Gebirgs with leaders, 2 SE Gebirgs, 5 ordinary Gebirgs and 6 Pioniere. For panzers I have 4 Panthers, 2 Tigers (Kercher and Rondorf), 3 SE Tigers and a SE Panther. I usually deploy with my forces in 3 roughly equal groups, each with 2 infantry (either 2 Pioniere or one Pioniere and one Gebirgs) and 3 heavy Panzers (2 + 1 SE). That has worked well so far. My question is, bearing in mind I am getting a reduction in the number of core units I can deploy, which should I be prioritising, infantry or panzers? Secondly, I have pretty much abandoned all other infantry types in favour of Gebirgs and Pioniere. I did try a couple of Kradschutzen earlier in the campaign and found them useful for a while but once other infantry got their 43 upgrades, the Kradschutzen seemed very fragile and I have not used them since. Am I missing a trick here? Do other infantry types have a use? For example, Fallschirm? I have tried them in the past but the demands of escorting them to their target, getting them on the ground and keeping them alive usually outweighs the possible gains from seizing objectives deep in enemy territory, at least it does later in the war when the ground opposition is stronger and more numerous.

Air units. It has all been going pretty well. I have 3 FW190's with heroes (Bar, Kittel and Nowotny) but have left the rest of my fighters as 109G's (several have acquired +1 spotting as their first hero so I have tended to use the ones that have other heroes when needed). Kiev 43 was a bit of an eye opener as the Russians now have Yak9-D's and are swarming any 109 they see. They are also now targeting my Me410's (Rudel and Lent are still OK but the "ordinary" 410's are getting hacked out of the sky). It got so bad I upgraded the 3 109's I deployed at Kiev to 190's during the scenario just to keep them alive. With increasing numbers of Russian air units appearing in each successive scenario should I continue to try and dominate in the air, or at least keep committing a significant number of air units or is there a point in GC East (and GC West, which I intend to play next) where you simply have to give up on the air war most of the time?

Final question for now (partly answered in RVallant's thread) is how many SP AT is it worth carrying? I have 4 which I developed through the StugIII line and then upgraded to Elefants. The Elefants need artillery backup against infantry, even in open terrain, but absolutely kill any Russian tank (even the IS-1's that are now turning up). Should I have tried to bring through a couple more or is 4 probably enough? (I am asking because most of my experience is with the British, whose SP AT is not good compared to their tanks so I don't bother with it, and the Americans, where 2 TD's to one Sherman is the normal ratio).

Actually I do have one more question. I have around 32,000 prestige starting 44. I have read AAR's by players with considerably more experience than myself saying that around 50,000 is necessary to have a chance of getting through 44 and 45 in the East. Does that mean I'm probably not going to make it? How much prestige do you really need? (I know that is a "how long is a piece of string" question as it depends on playstyle and many other variables) I will carry on anyway as I am rather into this having come so far but an indication that I could be heading for prestige issues would help me decide how hard to conserve prestige.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:08 am

Campaign update.

I stopped posting in this thread at Zhitomir. Since then things have generally gone well. 41 was wrapped up quite comfortably and 42 started well. I was apprehensive about the Stalingrad scenarios but those up to the end of Stalingrad Docks went well. Maximum use of artillery to support experienced infantry is the cornerstone of fighting in an urban environment. Getting out of Stalingrad does not look good. I looked at the starting positions for the next scenario on each path. Defending Stalingrad looked awful. I could see how to do it, by fighting a more mobile war around the airfield to the west and simply digging in around the rest of the perimeter to create kill zones when the attacking Russians pile up so the front units cannot retreat and surrenders can be forced. However the breakout option was more to my taste. I guess I am simply happier fighting manoeuvre battles. Whatever the reason, it went well and 42 finished with my units in pretty good shape.

43 is where reality starts to bite. Again it went well initially. To start the Russians are still relying on T34/43's and KV1-C's but since their fighters are poor careful use of airpower allows the Russian armour to be taken out. Once Tigers and Panthers become available it is almost too easy. The lead up to Prokhorovka was a bit tense, not knowing what to expect. I took the northern approach. I had thought the Kursk Armory scenario would be relatively easy. Then I saw the KV-85's and IS-1's clustered around. They were only strength 5 but I expected them to jump to full strength and attack at any moment. However they didn't so the scenario did turn out to be straightforward after all.

Prokhorovka itself wasn't particularly difficult. I deployed a small force in the NW which took the objective there quite handily. Another fairly small force in the SE was able to hold its ground and wear down the Russians trying to cross the river, eventually to the point it could break out. The main attack with most of the available armour started in the SW and headed NE with the immediate task of destroying the first groups of Russian armour and then taking the intermediate objectives. That phase went well and I thought I would have plenty of time to take the final objectives in Prokorhovka. That was until 5th Guards Tank Army rolled into view. My, what a lot of tanks they have! If the subsidiary attacks had been delayed I would have been in difficulty but by this stage all my units had linked up and had reached the southern edge of Prokorhovka. 5GTA headed for the northern end of the city and concentrated there. The tank battle was tough and I had to take replacements but pincered the Russians and essentially eliminated them. A DV and the prospect of regaining the initiative in the East! No, because the high command have lost their nerve and with it, the war.

The Dnieper scenarios were interesting in that the first one (Dnieperpetrovsk) involved holding the crossings in the North, squeezing the Russians southwards and eliminating them south of the Dnieper and securing the remaining crossings. Fairly straightforward and I thought Kremenchug would be more of the same. Not at all. The Dnieper has shrunk!!! What was impassable river in the previous scenario was now fordable. The hint in the briefing was helpful so the first phase was to attack and destroy as much enemy artillery as possible. Once Russian armour starts appearing it is time to retreat across the river, dig in, and set about eliminating them as they line up at the crossings. Once that initial attack was dealt with I moved back across the river and managed to regain most of the objectives before the second Russian attack hit. That one came down to slugging it out but I did get all the objectives and secure the DV.

Kiev 43 felt like a big step up. I will cover that in a separate post including a replay file.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by goose_2 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:30 pm

Cerberus51 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:24 am
goose_2 wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:52 pm

Sounds like you have a pretty good handle on things...I am trying to understand the specifics of your question. Could you be more specific about what you are asking?
I'm not entirely sure TBH. I just have this feeling I am missing something (or several somethings) quite important.

I have some specific questions about force mix for the GC East so perhaps it is best to start there.

Infantry and panzers - how many of each and what ratio to use? I currently have 4 Gebirgs with leaders, 2 SE Gebirgs, 5 ordinary Gebirgs and 6 Pioniere. For panzers I have 4 Panthers, 2 Tigers (Kercher and Rondorf), 3 SE Tigers and a SE Panther. I usually deploy with my forces in 3 roughly equal groups, each with 2 infantry (either 2 Pioniere or one Pioniere and one Gebirgs) and 3 heavy Panzers (2 + 1 SE). That has worked well so far. My question is, bearing in mind I am getting a reduction in the number of core units I can deploy, which should I be prioritising, infantry or panzers? Secondly, I have pretty much abandoned all other infantry types in favour of Gebirgs and Pioniere. I did try a couple of Kradschutzen earlier in the campaign and found them useful for a while but once other infantry got their 43 upgrades, the Kradschutzen seemed very fragile and I have not used them since. Am I missing a trick here? Do other infantry types have a use? For example, Fallschirm? I have tried them in the past but the demands of escorting them to their target, getting them on the ground and keeping them alive usually outweighs the possible gains from seizing objectives deep in enemy territory, at least it does later in the war when the ground opposition is stronger and more numerous.
I always sell off my SE Infantry to use tanks, but at this stage you may be too attached to them, I was my first time. Upgrade them to Grenadiers though because they will help you more as Grenadiers than as Gebirgsjaegers, and I am a big fan of the Gebirg.
I personally had 2 Kradschutzen in my Manstein playthrough. I upgraded any +1 Spotting inf to a Kradschutzen to help in my recon, which is there role.

Fallschirmjaeger are difficult to keep alive, I am trying them in my Ultimate campaign, but they are not my favorite unit based on the lower defense and ammo count.

+1 Movement should be Grenadiers. Grenadiers 43 are insanely good at defense and tearing up tanks and AA' AT's in close terrain.
Cerberus51 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:24 am
Air units. It has all been going pretty well. I have 3 FW190's with heroes (Bar, Kittel and Nowotny) but have left the rest of my fighters as 109G's (several have acquired +1 spotting as their first hero so I have tended to use the ones that have other heroes when needed). Kiev 43 was a bit of an eye opener as the Russians now have Yak9-D's and are swarming any 109 they see. They are also now targeting my Me410's (Rudel and Lent are still OK but the "ordinary" 410's are getting hacked out of the sky). It got so bad I upgraded the 3 109's I deployed at Kiev to 190's during the scenario just to keep them alive. With increasing numbers of Russian air units appearing in each successive scenario should I continue to try and dominate in the air, or at least keep committing a significant number of air units or is there a point in GC East (and GC West, which I intend to play next) where you simply have to give up on the air war most of the time?
I never give up the air, my units are untouchable even in Manstein, you need to keep them away from AA, and when they get damaged take them far away from the frontline. Bombers become less and less useful, so I mainly keep them back to keep below soft cap, and bring them out once I know I rule the sky's and know they will not impact soft cap.
Cerberus51 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:24 am
Final question for now (partly answered in RVallant's thread) is how many SP AT is it worth carrying? I have 4 which I developed through the StugIII line and then upgraded to Elefants. The Elefants need artillery backup against infantry, even in open terrain, but absolutely kill any Russian tank (even the IS-1's that are now turning up). Should I have tried to bring through a couple more or is 4 probably enough? (I am asking because most of my experience is with the British, whose SP AT is not good compared to their tanks so I don't bother with it, and the Americans, where 2 TD's to one Sherman is the normal ratio).
4 is a good AT amount, I go for a diverse AT layout, 1 Elephant, 1 Jagdpanther, 1 JagdTiger 1 StuG4, and even 1 88 in my Manstein playthrough.
Cerberus51 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:24 am
Actually I do have one more question. I have around 32,000 prestige starting 44. I have read AAR's by players with considerably more experience than myself saying that around 50,000 is necessary to have a chance of getting through 44 and 45 in the East. Does that mean I'm probably not going to make it? How much prestige do you really need? (I know that is a "how long is a piece of string" question as it depends on playstyle and many other variables) I will carry on anyway as I am rather into this having come so far but an indication that I could be heading for prestige issues would help me decide how hard to conserve prestige.
32k does seem like a fine amount to make it through. Avoid strongly the urge to buy replacements during a scenario. Get better about holding back units to maximize prestige. And learn the 3 S's...surround, suppress surrender. ;)

You could/should be fine with that level of prestige.

I hope this detailed response is helpful.
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Sat Aug 17, 2019 4:16 am

goose_2 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:30 pm

I hope this detailed response is helpful.
Extremely helpful. Thank you very much.

I had discounted Grenadiers due to their lower movement but I see the reasoning and will try them out.

The SE infantry were proving useful and had good experience by the time decent panzers became available. They are still proving useful and I do think it is a bit late to sell them off in the hope of getting SE panzers, which will start with no experience.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin (blind)

Post by Cerberus51 » Sat Aug 17, 2019 6:32 am

Kiev 43


Looks fairly obvious from the deployment map. Hold the centre of Kiev with a line of infantry backed by artillery (my +1 range Nebelwerfer 30 was awesome here) and send a strong force south to mop up the Soviet paras, crush the armour that will be heading west to reinforce them, cross the river and sweep up the eastern half of the map, hitting the Russians attacking Kiev in the flank. That's basically how it worked out - but not quite as simple as it sounds.

The Russian air force is getting serious. The Yak-9D is starting to appear regularly and is too much for anything less than an experienced FW190 in air to air combat. They are also getting more resistant to AA fire. I actually replayed a couple of turns due to the losses and damage my air units were taking. Eventually I did what I have been trying to put off and upgraded 3 109's to 190's - which stopped the rot but was expensive. The 3 190's with heroes are untouchable in the air but those little SPAAG's that zoom out of nowhere to knock a couple of strength points off them are incredibly annoying.

When my flanking force reached the southern edge of Kiev at around turn 15 I thought it was as good as done. Then for 3 turns consecutively the Russians bought 3 or 4 IS-1's each turn. I did get through eventually and the Russians were left with one SU-85 down to strength 2 at the end but that battle outside Kiev was quite tough.

Now starting 44. I have been awarded a SE Grenadier but infantry with no experience are just cannon fodder at this stage. I am considering reloading until I get something better.
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin

Post by Cerberus51 » Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:23 pm

Korsun Pocket

No longer a blind playthrough as I had quite a bit of difficulty with this one and eventually had to do some reading of previous AAR's. The difficult bit is anticipating where that attacks will come from. Then you get a certain amount if time to deal with them and redeploy to meet the next incursion. I went rather panzer heavy and only took 4 infantry - my 2 SE 43 Gebirgs, which are now shiny new 43 Grenadiers (thanks goose_2, looks useful so far), a +1 move Pioniere and Oleh Dir (still a Gebirgs but I am considering upgrading soon). I sold the SE Grenadier I had been awarded and will continue to try for decisives in order to get something better - hopefully a nice panzer as that will be able to build experience safely by picking off damaged units. I have been given a 43 Gebirgs with a pretty decent hero and a Tiger 1, also with a hero in this scenario. I have 5 ordinary 43 Gebirgs in trucks that I have not used for a while as I now have five units awarded as gebirgs with exceptional heroes. Some of the awarded units may get upgraded but I think I could sell off the ordinary gebirgs safely. I will keep them for now but they are the first choice to dispose off if I need to claw back prestige.

So far I have fended off the attacks up to the start of turn 8 but the Russians are coming in from all directions now. I have destroyed a lot of their armour as once that is gone I can mop up anything else at leisure. I have also destroyed a second formation of aircraft so all is good in the skies (at least, it would be without the snow).

Let's see how it goes from here.

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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin

Post by goose_2 » Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:00 pm

I looked back at my Manstein playthrough and it shows those first 3 battles of 44 were brutal. It does not really ease up until Poltava...blessings on your endeavors.
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Re: GC Barbarossa to Berlin

Post by Cerberus51 » Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:10 pm

goose_2 wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:00 pm
I looked back at my Manstein playthrough and it shows those first 3 battles of 44 were brutal. It does not really ease up until Poltava...blessings on your endeavors.
Thanks for the heads up.

Korsun Pocket continued


Things went fairly quiet during the next few turns. Thanks to the 2 gifted reinforcement units I was able to mop up the handful of Russians in the SW and retake the two objectives in this area. With no ground troops in that sector the Russians could no longer see or use AA against the transports. I was able to mop up most of the nearby Russians elsewhere and reposition and resupply my units to cover the routes used by incoming Russian units towards the airfields. They started to show up from turn 12 onwards but were never a serious threat. Further air incursions were also easily dealt with. On turn 15 I was able to position the required 4 transports over the airfields and take the decisive win.

Looking back the decision to go with every available Tiger, Panther and Elefant was the right one. That allowed me to cover all the attack routes and eliminate the better Russian tanks quickly. Once they were gone the rest were easily dealt with. It does help when enemy infantry march across open ground into artillery range and right up to Tigers. Six fw190's and three 8.8's gave me command of the air. Easier than I thought it would be in the end.

Korsun Breakout does not look good at the deployment screen. From the briefing it seems the ridges ahead are defended and then it is a run across open plains with several groups of enemy armour waiting on the flanks. However I have a plan for that (I think). One bit of good news, I sold the SE Grenadier I was given at the start of Korsun and at the start of this one got a SE PzIII which I promptly upgraded to a Panther A.

That gives me 4 Elefants, 3 Tigers, 4 Panthers, 3 SE Tigers and 2 SE Panthers. If anything, the problem I now have is that I will not be able to deploy all of them as I will need other units as well.

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