Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

After action reports for Commander Europe at War.

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Peter Stauffenberg
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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Tue Jul 03, 2012 11:10 am

These charts show that Joerock managed to get away with the fall of France without huge Axis losses and quite big UK losses. Since Paris fell early and Belgium gives full production I think Joerock can quickly replace the lost steps while UK can not. If I were Morris I would be worried about a Sealion.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Crazygunner1 » Tue Jul 03, 2012 1:50 pm

Stauffenberg wrote:Yes he did
Then operation Sealion is iminent, should be fun to see Morris defense...ha ha ha

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Diplomaticus » Tue Jul 03, 2012 7:48 pm

If Morris plays true to form, he'll throw the whole RN at any invasion fleet, regardless of losses. But then, M probably no longer has any surprises for Joe, who knows him all too well.

It's interesting to me to see how this'll play out. Morris, after all, used to *want* people to do Sea Lion, remember? But that was before the morale drop, etc.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Crazygunner1 » Tue Jul 03, 2012 7:58 pm

Diplomaticus wrote:If Morris plays true to form, he'll throw the whole RN at any invasion fleet, regardless of losses. But then, M probably no longer has any surprises for Joe, who knows him all too well.

It's interesting to me to see how this'll play out. Morris, after all, used to *want* people to do Sea Lion, remember? But that was before the morale drop, etc.
True, think Morris still wants people to do sealion against him. His strategy often is to bleed the germans as much as possible while they are weak in 40-41. It´s a good strategy....

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Tue Jul 03, 2012 9:01 pm

I think Joe needs to have extra naval units to deal do Sealion since Morris will do an all out attack with the Royal Navy. Or at least having a big tactical bomber force to sink the Royal Navy.

A good Axis strategy could be to threaten to do a Sealion to lure the Royal Navy out and then instead send the bombers against the battleships and CV and use subs to sink them. That means building a few subs too. If the Royal Navy is seriously depleted the Axis can have fun in the Atlantic with subs and force USA and UK to build extra naval units to compensate. That means delaying the chance for the Allies to intervene in Africa and France while still having the full Axis strength in Russia.

Joerock is so good implementing Barbarossa so he can roll over Morris in 1941 and 1942 if he can do so with a normal buildup for Barbarosssa and a May 1941 start. If Joe is locked in a Sealion struggle then the 1941 Barbarossa won't be so strong and Russia will be saved, at the expense of England falling.

I'm sure Joe knows all about this and has decided his strategy for where to go next. I know that when Joe attacks he won't do it with less that optimal strength. So he has probably built already for his next moves. Only he knows where he will strike. E. g. he could go after Egypt since there won't be British reinforcements going there for awhile. He could take Port Said and send the air units he needed to take Egypt back to the east front in time for a May 1941 Barbarossa start. He probably needs to take Yugoslavia and Greece too.

Joe has accepted the French Armistice Offer so I don't think he will go after Gibraltar and Spain.

Joe has many options now
1. Strong Sealion with the intent of taking all of England ==> No strong 1941 Barbarossa
2. Sealion faint to destroy the Royal Navy and then build a strong submarine force to rule the Atlantic for some years, i. e. kill most of the convoys. The Kriegsmarine can be out helping the subs.
==> Strong 1941 Barbarossa still possible
3. Limited attack on Egypt to just close the Suez combined with Yugoslavia and Greece. ==> Strong 1941 Barbarossa still possible
4. Strong attack on Egypt to take Iraq and possibly Persia as well. No strong 1941 Barbarossa
5. Just take Yugoslavia, Greece, Norway and Denmark and gear up for as strong May 1941 Barbarossa as possible. Can be combined with building subs for the Battle of the Atlantic.

All these 5 strategies have merit and Morris will have to defend against all these possibilities. He must make the correct builds and labs to counter the right strategy. A wrong choice and he will struggle later in the game.

Morris'es strength is on strategy and not so much on tactics. Joe, however, is truly amazing on tactics. He might even be better than Supermax. So I think Joerock will excel the most if he can build a super strong force in the east and roll over Russia similar to what Morris usually does with his panzers. Joe can pocket many Russian units and crush the Russians in 1942. Morris likes too much to counter attack so I don't see him giving away enough space in 1941 to save his army. For Morris to survive against Joe he needs to retreat the way Joe did in the game between then where Joe was the Allies.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Cybvep » Tue Jul 03, 2012 9:22 pm

1. Strong Sealion with the intent of taking all of England ==> No strong 1941 Barbarossa
2. Sealion faint to destroy the Royal Navy and then build a strong submarine force to rule the Atlantic for some years, i. e. kill most of the convoys. The Kriegsmarine can be out helping the subs.
==> Strong 1941 Barbarossa still possible
3. Limited attack on Egypt to just close the Suez combined with Yugoslavia and Greece. ==> Strong 1941 Barbarossa still possible
4. Strong attack on Egypt to take Iraq and possibly Persia as well. No strong 1941 Barbarossa
5. Just take Yugoslavia, Greece, Norway and Denmark and gear up for as strong May 1941 Barbarossa as possible. Can be combined with building subs for the Battle of the Atlantic.
1. Possible, but unlikely if Joe wants to attack the SU in 1941.
2. This sounds feasible. The question is whether Morris behaves as we suspect he will...
3. Meh, that would mean that Joe would be playing right into Morris' hands. This is Morris we are talking about here - if he still believes in his old strategy (bleed the Germans in 1940-1941->sacrifice the UK->overwhelm the Axis with the Red Army), he will WANT Joe to attack the British everywhere and suffer casualties. As long as Gibraltar is in the Allied hands, there is no point in capturing Suez, which is sth like... 1-2 PP(s)?
4. That would be even worse - it should only be done if Morris moves everything out of Africa and the Middle East.
5. Conservative, but sensible. There is no obligation to do a Sea Lion, especially when Morris expects it. Joe can conquer pretty much everything comfortably and prepare for Barbarossa.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by joerock22 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 4:02 am

Interesting discussion, guys. Thank you for the insights. I actually haven't decided what I want do to yet. I had decided on one plan from the very beginning, but a very recent experience in another game has shown me that perhaps it isn't the best idea. So I'm not too disappointed about Morris's trip. This will give my other game a chance to play out some more and perhaps give me a better idea of what I can expect if I use the same strategy again.

The comments on Morris's strategies are also interesting, because I either wasn't following or don't remember the strategies he used to use as the Allies months/years ago. But whatever I do, I expect him to continue with his "bleed the Germans" strategy. It seems he is almost always aggressive, regardless of side or situation.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Cybvep » Wed Jul 04, 2012 6:45 am

Morris used to do crazy things like moving the whole RAF to the Soviet Union, moving most British units to France, abandoning Africa entirely, sacrificing the RN etc. The only purpose was to bleed the Germans before Barbarossa. When Barbarossa came, he made an overwhelming counter-attack in Ukraine. This worked 9 times out of 10. However, that was back in the 2.0 days. Things are different now.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by rkr1958 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 4:12 pm

joerock22 wrote:Interesting discussion, guys. Thank you for the insights. I actually haven't decided what I want do to yet. I had decided on one plan from the very beginning, but a very recent experience in another game has shown me that perhaps it isn't the best idea. So I'm not too disappointed about Morris's trip. This will give my other game a chance to play out some more and perhaps give me a better idea of what I can expect if I use the same strategy again.

The comments on Morris's strategies are also interesting, because I either wasn't following or don't remember the strategies he used to use as the Allies months/years ago. But whatever I do, I expect him to continue with his "bleed the Germans" strategy. It seems he is almost always aggressive, regardless of side or situation.
Here's where I'm placing my money.

1. You'll conquer Yugoslavia.

2. You'll consider Greece; but will make the calculation that the payoff is not worth the risk of having to deal with a British intervention and RN in the Med. Not that you couldn't easily handle it; but because you know that Morris was continue to pester you in the west and probably try a '42 invasion of France. Basically, you'll want to save up the resources to punish the allies for their early invasion attempts.

3. You'll skip Norway; again for the same reasons listed in 2.

4. You'll build up a very strong and potent force and with it launch Barbarossa in May 1942.

5. You'll build up a strong reserve force to handle Morris' early invasion attempts in west in 1942 and 1943. And, to defend Italy and Sicily in those same years.

6. You'll build lots of subs with the priority to stop the convoys to the UK, and later to the USA. You'll put less priority on stopping the Murmansk convoy; because of the losses you'll be inflicting against an aggressive Morris there.

7. You'll build lots of fighters and extra TACs to bolster your western reserve force and to wreak havoc on invasion transports.

8. You will continue to repel invasions from the west; because they will come at you piecemeal; while you continue to grind forward in Russia.

Well ... that's my prediction. :D

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by peterjfrigate » Wed Jul 04, 2012 4:49 pm

I'm also playing Axis vs. Morris and it's been a tough slog. Here's a recap of our game:

In France the UK suffered about the same as in Joe's game, though German loses were higher. His strategy was very different and one I hadn't seen before. He pulled most of his force back around Paris from the get-go, thus conceding much of the field to the Axis armies. Nevertheless he was able to hold me off with powerful high efficiency Mechs around Paris (I think he built 3). Paris finally fell when he did a counterattack vs. one of my mechs - this left the capital open to an enveloping counterthrust. The UK also lost an INF a MECH and some GARS to the prison camps, as they had strayed far from the coast and could not be rescued. So far so good.

After France, he continued to aggressively harass the Axis fighters causing many step loses (I had 4 FTRS and thought I had the upper hand). The UK also lost a DD, a BB and several more were reduced to 1 or 2 steps. His CV was battered. All this gave me the false sense that he was too weak to do much. But things were the other way around. He made a kind of suicide charge vs. Tobruk and again he was dealt a counterstroke and was forced to retire (here I kOd an INF and the ARM was reduced to 1 step. The ARM stubbornly refused to die even after pursuit by air and shore bombardment. It was frustrating to see all these expensive units used recklessly and then escape at 1 step, but what can you do? Chances are this will happen and you can't always trap them.

With great difficulty I scraped together a Barbarossa comprising about 5 ARM, 5 Mech, 3 TAC and some infantry. Certainly not great, but my air and navy had worn themselves out beating up the RN. I KOd many Soviet mechs on the first turns and managed to push to near historical boundaries and then dug in. Of Course he had a massive arm counterattack ready to go behind Rostov...despite my preparations he knocked out 2 ARM (ouch) though I did manage to take down 2 of his own in reply.

Meanwhile, the UK blasted back into Brest with many MECHs and a powerful set of rebuilt FTRs (no TACs). How could he field such a force? Part of the answer is that he moved all of the 8th army from egypt to the Western Theatre. But I am so weak I can't take advantage of the mid-east vaccuum.

At this point the game is suspended while Morris is traveling. I have a double line (barely) around the Denieper and he is entrenched in France and I'm still trying to figure out how to
counter his "UK overload" strategy.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by rkr1958 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 5:19 pm

Though I'm not at the level of Joe or Morris here's my take on how to handle a very aggressive allied player. For the allied player to build that sort of invasion force in 1942 then this means he's probably skimping some on labs and on his navy. To counter this I would build a strong sub force and go after the UK convoys. I can attest to the fact (see my AAR with Lenonard) that without convoys getting through the UK struggles financially. You garrison Brest with a German infantry corps and a +1 defensive leader. Make sure you have the two land hexes directly behind Brest garrisoned by two garrisons. Also a German u-boat in Brest and 1 other close by can make UK transport pay a high price for this early invasion attempt; especially if you have air units in range to support your counterstroke. Again, you need a strong reserve that you can move to block an allied invasion and crush those units that get ashore.

To the bottom line, for me, in countering an aggressive allied player who likes to create mischief in '42 is to stay focused on Russia and allow the western allies to come to you. Don't waste resources on them (i.e., the western allies) in sideshows; but save them up and use them in force against them when they try to land early. Personally, while I know it's a pain to have to plan for and deal with their constant mettlingly; I view it actually as a positive in that I'm dealing with the western allies piecemeal instead of having to deal with an overwhelming blow in 1944 in France and 1943 in the Med.

I think the key for the axis is to exploit the fact that the western allies are probably weaker at sea and not investing as much in research as most allied players.

In my opinion, you need to view the moves of an aggressive allied player both in the west and in the east as an opportunity to inflict more damage on them in the long term (versus the short term chaos and pain that they cause to you) and; most importantly, do NOT allow them to dictate the flow of the game and seize the initiative before 1943. If you do that; then you've lost as the axis. Don't let early aggressive allied play rattle you. Deal with it and stay on task.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:34 pm

The problem with the plan Ronnie types is that Germany don't have the oil to support a large air force which is locked in combat. The Allies will eventually prevail if they use England as a huge carrier and engage the Luftwaffe fighters in the west.

The offensive in Russia is so costly oil wise that they HAVE TO capture some oilfields to sustain the army. The only possible sources are:
* Maikop, Grozny and 2nd Baku
* Baku area
* Iraq and Persia
* Upping the industry tech to get more synth oil

The Allies will love to see the Axi burn oil in stale mate kind of fights.

On the other hand. Joe must have a reserve in central Germany to rail them to France or Italy to prevent Allied landings. This reserve force has to contain tactical bombers and fighters. So if the fighters are on sentry when the Allies bombard German industry they could activate when transports are nearby and support tactical bombers that will try to kill the transports.

Getting a big sub force is probably smarter because it's not that expensive oil wise. Some can lurk in key ports and hit Allied transports sailing adjacent to the ports.

I have a feeling that Morris wants to bleed the Germans dry of oil reserves and eventually manpower. So Joe needs to find a strategy that will conserve oil except in the area where he wans to be active. This is not easy.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by rkr1958 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 1:14 pm

Stauffenberg wrote:I have a feeling that Morris wants to bleed the Germans dry of oil reserves and eventually manpower. So Joe needs to find a strategy that will conserve oil except in the area where he wans to be active. This is not easy.
If anyone can manage his oil it's Joe. In our game Joe told me that his oil level never dropped below 300. Not only did he have a very large oil consuming force in the east; but he had one in the west keeping me at bay.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Morris » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:55 am

I am reading these comments & thinking of my strategy in Vancouver by drinking coffee in Fairmont . ,So does Joe in USA !



We will play something fresh ! :D

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Blathergut » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:17 am

Welcome to Canada! Too bad an entire continent separates us east/west! Have a timbit for me!

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by dagtwo » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:45 pm

Morris wrote:I am reading these comments & thinking of my strategy in Vancouver...
You must have brought the sunshine with you. Thanks Morris!
Hex grids Rule!

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Morris » Sat Jul 07, 2012 6:12 am

Blathergut wrote:Welcome to Canada! Too bad an entire continent separates us east/west! Have a timbit for me!
I just cam back from Banff ! I love there ! wonderful hotel of fairmont Banf spring ! I love Canada ! :D

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by Diplomaticus » Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:03 pm

The DoW by France/UK against Belgium means a drop of 6% war effort from the USA until it enters the war. Can anybody give us an idea of exactly how many PP's that'll add up to? The loss of war effort from Sept. 1939 until December 1941--what kind of figure would we be talking about?

TYIA

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by joerock22 » Fri Jul 20, 2012 2:15 am

Turn 11 – March 19, 1940

And we’re back!

Late rains turned the roads to mud, so the planned invasion of Holland had to be postponed for a few weeks. On the bright side, this gave me a chance to bring in heavier units—Hague will almost certainly fall in 1 turn now. Also, Italy joined the Axis due to lack of Allied naval units in the Med.

No screenshots this time. Will pick up again when the action resumes.

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Re: Joe v. Morris Round II (Joe's AAR)

Post by joerock22 » Sat Jul 21, 2012 2:15 pm

Turn 12 – April 8, 1940

After thinking about it for awhile, I decided to go for Sea Lion. From what I know about Morris, he will be a huge pain in the rear with the Western Allies in 1941-42 if I don’t do something about them now. Paris fell early, the British lost some units in France, and England looks poorly defended. It seems like the perfect opportunity for Sea Lion. Morris tells me that he is expecting this, but then most people probably would at this stage. I do not think he is in position to defeat a well-executed Sea Lion attempt.

Still, I will be cautious. I will try to land in only a narrow area, making sure to protect my ships and transports from enemy naval assault. The RN is Morris’s most potent weapon at this point, though to use it he will have to venture into Axis air cover. I wish my sub reinforcements were ready, but unfortunately they are still under construction. Still, I am confident about my ability to defeat the RN if it comes to a major battle.

Pre-turn

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Post-turn

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