Case White Strategy Article

After action reports for Commander Europe at War.

Moderators: rkr1958, Happycat, Slitherine Core

Post Reply
rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:17 am

I consider myself an above average GS player. I think I'm fairly good; but I'm definitely not in the same class as our elite players such as Borger, Joe Rock, Max, Morris, Neil and others. These elite players are so because they are original strategist as well as excellent tacticians. These are the players that are the original thinkers and they come up with the new strategies that continue to astound and amaze the rest of us.

I freely admit that I'm not one those original thinkers. I am one of those who learn from others. I like to take the strategy outlines from others, analyze them and then take the parts that I like and "file them away" for future use. My global strategy in a given game is usually a "cut and paste" of my "strategy files".

What I do try to do is to analyze and refine the execution of my "strategy files" in order to execute them as efficiently as I can. The following strategy article was developed from an outline I got from Borger. I hope you find it instructive.
Borger wrote:When I take out Poland I don't rely upon a retreat of the corps north of Posen. My critical hex is Lodz. This unit has to be destroyed. I kill the unit south of Lodz. Then I attack Lodz with a tactical bomber. I then attack with an infantry, then a mech and finally an infantry. If Lodz didn't fall I attack with the other tac bomber if 2+ steps remain or a fighter if 1 step remains. Then I attack the unit north of Posen. If I get a retreat then fine, if not then I destroy it with my northern armor and garrison. That makes a free way for my other mech to attack the garrison west of Warsaw. It retreats and hopefully it's killed by the corps from Eastern Prussia. That leaves the southern 2 armor units free way to Warsaw. If I didn't have to use the tac bomber against Lodz then I use it against Warsaw before the armor units attack.

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:18 am

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

BuddyGrant
Sergeant - 7.5 cm FK 16 nA
Sergeant - 7.5 cm FK 16 nA
Posts: 225
Joined: Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:06 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by BuddyGrant » Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:50 am

This is just some fantastic detail and insight - thanks for writing this & sharing this. I'd love to see a group of plans like this for key battles combined into a single CEAW GS Strategy Primer someday.

Blathergut
Field Marshal - Elefant
Field Marshal - Elefant
Posts: 5733
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 1:44 am
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by Blathergut » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:01 pm

I think the one weakness in this is not using the German mech to attack armia pomorze. Using the infantry with the fighter I have seen the Poles not retreat more often than not. Even with using the mech there have been times the Poles stood their ground, but it is much more infrequent. I'd rather hit with the mech and use the inf. on the garrison. If the garrison retreats, there is a chance the German unit to the north can move down and destroy it. This lets the armour swing down to Lodz.

amcdonel
Sergeant - Panzer IIC
Sergeant - Panzer IIC
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 11:48 pm

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by amcdonel » Sat Apr 21, 2012 7:59 pm

BuddyGrant wrote:This is just some fantastic detail and insight - thanks for writing this & sharing this. I'd love to see a group of plans like this for key battles combined into a single CEAW GS Strategy Primer someday.
There are a number of strategies guides/plans in the GS Manual - in earlier versions and in the new GS 2.1 Manual (not released yet).

If there are other strategies you know of that would make good candidates for the manual - please let me know. Right now the Strategy section of GS 2.1 manual has:

Lab Strategies
Axis Early War Strategy Guidelines
Axis - Early War Execution
SnapKrieg - Taking Holland & Denmark Early
Denmark & Norway Invasion Strategy
Axis Invasion of Other Countries
Sea Lion
Sea Lion - Alternative Strategy
Alternatives to Sea Lion
Sea Lion Defense
Barbarossa
Taking Leningrad
How to Defeat the Soviet Union
Fortress Europa
Barbarossa Alternative - Bleed The Brits
Russian War Strategy - Survive the First 2 Years
Breaking the Double Defensive Line
Axis Submarine Warfare
Allied Anti-Submarine Operations

Hope this helps!

OxfordGuy3
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Posts: 332
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:32 pm
Location: Oxford, UK

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by OxfordGuy3 » Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:12 pm

Just coming back to CEAW after a long break, found this useful to remind me of Turn 1 strategy. A few questions:

1) In turn 2 you moved both Fighters to he Danish border - this means the Polish air can intercept your Strategic bomber when it supports your attack on Warsaw - that sounds quite risky to me, as you're likely to lose a couple of steps when the Polish fighter intercepts, or am I missing something

2) Where do you deploy Runstedt - on the Garrison in Bremen? Or is Bremen better for the Parachute unit upgrade, in which case where to place Runstedt?

3) If building an Air lab, is it usually best to focus on fighters initially?

4) Is it worth starting to move the sub in the Atlantic towards Norway, or better to head up to Canada to try to intercept the Canadian units?

5) In the west, should all the Garrisons stay in their starting forts?

I guess the new Slovak garrison could be the unit to rail to Konigsberg

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:49 am

oxford_guy wrote:Just coming back to CEAW after a long break, found this useful to remind me of Turn 1 strategy. A few questions:

1) In turn 2 you moved both Fighters to he Danish border - this means the Polish air can intercept your Strategic bomber when it supports your attack on Warsaw - that sounds quite risky to me, as you're likely to lose a couple of steps when the Polish fighter intercepts, or am I missing something
If you get two armor attacks on Warsaw the first turn, which happens most of my games, then you should easily be able to finish off the Warsaw defenders without having to use any air support. Though, if you do use, or need air, the fighters are still there (assuming you don't move them until the end of your turn).
oxford_guy wrote:2) Where do you deploy Runstedt - on the Garrison in Bremen? Or is Bremen better for the Parachute unit upgrade, in which case where to place Runstedt?
I no longer do the turn 3 invasion of Norway / Denmark, so I now usually deploy him to the German corps in the West closest to Belgium. I use the garrison in Berlin to build my 1st paratrooper division.
oxford_guy wrote:3) If building an Air lab, is it usually best to focus on fighters initially?
I don't. I wait until I get tech level 1 in all three areas and then switch to fighters.
oxford_guy wrote:4) Is it worth starting to move the sub in the Atlantic towards Norway, or better to head up to Canada to try to intercept the Canadian units?
I usually like to send them to the Canadian and US coasts. Though, another good position is in the Central Atlantic northwest of France and south of Ireland. You can catch a look of convoys moving into the Irish sea. However; the allied player knows that too and is probably sweeping for you.
oxford_guy wrote:5) In the west, should all the Garrisons stay in their starting forts?
No. I use them in France.
oxford_guy wrote:I guess the new Slovak garrison could be the unit to rail to Konigsberg
I do like to keep Germany ports garrisoned with garrisons to guard against a surprise raid by the allies. But, I don't worry about those in the Baltic until Russia is in the way. So I wouldn't move a garrison to Konigsberg until then.

OxfordGuy3
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Posts: 332
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:32 pm
Location: Oxford, UK

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by OxfordGuy3 » Wed Feb 26, 2014 8:28 am

rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:Just coming back to CEAW after a long break, found this useful to remind me of Turn 1 strategy. A few questions:

1) In turn 2 you moved both Fighters to he Danish border - this means the Polish air can intercept your Strategic bomber when it supports your attack on Warsaw - that sounds quite risky to me, as you're likely to lose a couple of steps when the Polish fighter intercepts, or am I missing something
If you get two armor attacks on Warsaw the first turn, which happens most of my games, then you should easily be able to finish off the Warsaw defenders without having to use any air support. Though, if you do use, or need air, the fighters are still there (assuming you don't move them until the end of your turn).
Oh I see, so you could use on fighter to escort the Str Bomber, if needed. I assume for the TACs would be needed elsewhere on Turn 2, regardless of where you go next
rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:2) Where do you deploy Runstedt - on the Garrison in Bremen? Or is Bremen better for the Parachute unit upgrade, in which case where to place Runstedt?
I no longer do the turn 3 invasion of Norway / Denmark, so I now usually deploy him to the German corps in the West closest to Belgium. I use the garrison in Berlin to build my 1st paratrooper division.
Okay, though I seem to remember I quite often used to place Leaders on garrison units, as you don't necessarily want your leader at the front (so can rail him etc.), in GS 3 they even give Garrisons an extra movement point, if they have a Leader, so seems even more viable now.

What's the weakness with the turn 3 invasion of Norway - risk of bad weather upsetting the plans?
rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:3) If building an Air lab, is it usually best to focus on fighters initially?
I don't. I wait until I get tech level 1 in all three areas and then switch to fighters.
I presume to ensure that you get more range for all air units early on?
rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:4) Is it worth starting to move the sub in the Atlantic towards Norway, or better to head up to Canada to try to intercept the Canadian units?
I usually like to send them to the Canadian and US coasts. Though, another good position is in the Central Atlantic northwest of France and south of Ireland. You can catch a look of convoys moving into the Irish sea. However; the allied player knows that too and is probably sweeping for you.
Am still learning about the new sub rules - sweeping, Zzzz-ing subs to avoid intercepting etc... Will take a while to figure out best way to use them I think!
rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:5) In the west, should all the Garrisons stay in their starting forts?


No. I use them in France. I
Sorry, I meant on Turn 1
rkr1958 wrote:
oxford_guy wrote:I guess the new Slovak garrison could be the unit to rail to Konigsberg
I do like to keep Germany ports garrisoned with garrisons to guard against a surprise raid by the allies. But, I don't worry about those in the Baltic until Russia is in the way. So I wouldn't move a garrison to Konigsberg until then.
Okay, though don't you need some units in the east to protect against partisans?

Crazygunner1
Major - 8.8 cm FlaK 36
Major - 8.8 cm FlaK 36
Posts: 959
Joined: Sun Dec 27, 2009 4:13 pm

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by Crazygunner1 » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:29 am

Norway plan is as you say bad weather. I think it´s around 25% chance of bad weather and you can´t land. But no harm, you can return transports to port without loosing anything but a few oil points

Correct about the airplane research. In some cases it can be worth not to focus on fighter if you are planning a campaign in the Med or elsewhere so you get the first range tech. Then focus on whatever, usually fighter

There aren´t that much partisans in Poland, however in Russia i suggest you station Gar in all cites. Even Yugoslavia and Greece can be troublesome.

You will catch up quickly, goes very fast when you are playing other people rather than the computer :)

Peter Stauffenberg
General - Carrier
General - Carrier
Posts: 4693
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 4:13 pm
Location: Oslo, Norway

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Wed Feb 26, 2014 2:54 pm

I usually have very good results with invading Norway / Denmark on turn 3 or 4 (dependent upon weather). If you don't get ashore then you can always capture Norway in the Fall of 1940. Denmark should fall regardless.

The worst that can happen is that you get ashore in Norway and get bogged down. With 2 corps units you should eventually take Oslo during the Winter. It can be annoying if the UK can land units in Bergen, but you can position your subs near so you can intercept transports or at least hit them before they can land in Bergen. The upside is that UK corps units in Norway can't help defending France or England.

OxfordGuy3
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Staff Sergeant - Kavallerie
Posts: 332
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:32 pm
Location: Oxford, UK

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by OxfordGuy3 » Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:55 pm

From what I remember when I was playing CEAW before, the problem if you didn't invade Norway in 1939 was that it limited your invasion options (and what's almost as important, the threat of them) in 1940 - I used to like to be able to at least threaten Sealion for a period after the fall of France, to keep Commonwealth forces tied to the UK for as long as possible, whilst also leaving the option open for other ventures e.g. naval invasion of Greece

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:19 pm

I’m constantly tinkering and tweaking various strategies. I “stumbled” across a tweak to my Case White strategy that will often allow a player to attack Warsaw with three armor corps during the opening turn invasion of Poland. What percentage of the time “often” is I haven’t and don’t plan to characterize. However, in the few hotseat games I played to write this article, I’d say it’s between 25 to 50%. And, for those times I wasn’t able to get all three armor corps adjacent to attack Warsaw, I was able to get two.

Now why is this significant? Well, experience has taught me that there’s ~5% chance of conquering Poland in one turn if you can attack Warsaw with 2 armor corps. And, I’ve never had a game where Warsaw wasn’t captured and Poland fell on turn 2 when I was able to attack the capital with 2 armor corps on turn 1. I believe this tweak to my well worn Case White strategy nearly guarantees that Warsaw can be attacked by two armor corps on turn 1 and with three armors corps 25 to 50% of the time. With 3 armor corps attacking Warsaw on turn 1, the chance for a one turn conquest of Poland significantly increases from 5%. To what, again I don't know or plan to characterize, but possibly to 10, 15 or maybe even 20%. Regardless, the attacks and results that I've seen in a handful number of hotseat games just feels better as the Germans.

The screenshots I’m writing to describing this tweak are for a successful hotseat one turn knockout of Poland. Now, in the four previous attempts not all attacks went as planned and I had to deviate accordingly, concede the objective of attacking Warsaw with all three armor corps and focus on making the attack with two. But even if you attack only with two, I believe this strategy will leave Poland in such a state that a second turn conquest of Poland is a given.

The following results are based on playing with the 3.2 Beta version of CEaW, which has a number of updates including significantly longer air ranges. The two German fighters at start now have a movement of 20 hexes and an attack range of 8. The two TACs start with a movement of 24 hexes and an attack range of 10. This means that at start, both German TACs (III and II Fliegerkorps) and one German fighter (IV Fliegerkorps) have the range to attack Warsaw on turn 1. Of course, because of ground strike limits only two of these three air units actually could.

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:26 pm

This screenshot is not part of the strategy. I just moved German air units to spot the “hidden” positions of two Polish units: (1) Polish Grupa Kutno garrison two hexes northwest of Warsaw and (2) Polish Grupa Tarnow garrison three hexes east of Krakow. The reason for pointing these two “hidden” garrisons out is to stress not to get careless moving units and be “surprised” by either. In such a case, the moving unit stops and can’t attack that turn, which in effect wastes that unit's combat ability on that turn (i.e., turn 1).

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:28 pm

So let’s get started with my revised Case White Strategy.

The Luftwaffe II TAC and IV Fighter units are kept in reserve to finish off those units that survive destruction by 1, 2 or possibly even 3 steps on our to way to our turn 1, hopefully, three armor corps attack on Warsaw. If one or both reserve air units aren’t needed then they can, and will, be used for ground strikes on Warsaw itself.

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:32 pm

This screenshot shows the German and Polish positions after the successful prosecution of the first two planned attacks.

1. The objective of the first attack is to force the retreat of the Polish Armia Pomorze corps. This was accomplished by a ground strike by the I Luftwaffe fighter unit followed by a land attack by the II German infantry corps. I like to launch this attack first because if it fails then you will immediately need to improvise your strategy and likely settle for only getting two armor corps adjacent to and attacking Warsaw this turn. There’s a saying that the best Military plans last until first contact with the enemy. You’ll see that axiom brought to life probably 1 out of 5 games (i.e., ~20%) with this strategy and on this initial attack. So be prepared to adapt and make the best of things. But, that didn’t happen in this example so let's proceed with our plan.

2. The objective of the second attack is the destruction of the Polish Grupa Katno garrison. For that, I attack first with the III German mech corps and then with the XXI infantry corps. Maybe 90% of the time or better, this is enough to destroy the Polish garrison. For those other 10% of the times, I'll use either the IV fighters or the II TAC to finish it off. The rule of thumb that I use is if 1 step is left I use the fighter and if 2 or more I use the TAC. In this example, the two ground units were sufficient and Case White proceeded as "scripted".

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:38 pm

This screenshot shows German and Polish positions after the successful execution of attacks 3, 4 and 5.

3. The objective of attack three is the destruction of the Polish infantry corps, Armia Lodz. This was accomplished by ground attacks with three German infantry corps (XVIII, VIII and XIII Armeekrops).

4. The objective of the fourth attack is the destruction of the Polish garrison occupying Lodz, appropriately named the Lodz Garrison. While the capture of Lodz is nice, it’s not essential to achieving the objective. The land attack was, and should be, proceeded by a ground strike with the Luftwaffe III TAC unit. I then attack the garrison with two German infantry corps (IV and XI) followed by a German mech corps (XV Panzergrenaders). Most of the time this attack sequence will result in the destruction of the Polish garrison and the capture of Lodz, but it didn’t in this example. The Polish garrison was left standing at 1-step and was finished off by the Luftwaffe IV fighter unit begin held in reserve.

5. The last and final attack, before the attack on Warsaw itself, is required to clear the way for the third armor unit to attack Warsaw. This attack is on the Polish Grupa Wyskow garrison two hexes north, northeast of Warsaw. The objective is to force the retreat of the garrison and make the hex directly north of Warsaw reachable by German armor. Without a retreat, the zoc exerted by that unit and by the Polish corps in Warsaw makes that hex unreachable this turn. In this example the attack succeed (i.e., Grupa Wyskow garrison retreated). However, if it had failed then Warsaw though not reachable and attackable by three armor corps would still be reachable and attackable by two corps. Not a bad result by any means.

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:42 pm

6. This attack is what all the other attacks have led to and that's the attack on Warsaw. Of course the objective is the destruction of the Polish corps defending Warsaw (Armia Warszaw), the capture of Warsaw and a one turn conquest of Poland. However, if you’ve gotten this far into this plan then whatever result you achieve will guarantee that Poland will fall on turn 2 and without much additional effort or pain. In this example, the Germans still had the II Luftwaffe TAC unit in reserve and used that unit first to ground strike the Polish corps in Warsaw. This ground strike was followed by a panzer corps attacking the Polish corps from the hex northwest of Warsaw, then a second panzer corps attacking the crops from the hex southwest and then the third attacking from directly north and across the Wisla river. In this example, it was this third attack that finished off the 2 surviving steps of the Polish corps defending Warsaw.

Thus, completes my one turn conquest of Poland. Ahh, if only all my plans went this way ...

Image

rkr1958
General - Elite King Tiger
General - Elite King Tiger
Posts: 4262
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:20 am

Re: Case White Strategy Article

Post by rkr1958 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:48 pm

By the way, as the axis, I now no longer launch any invasion of Norway. That is, no invasion in 1939, 1940 or 1941. I've come to the conclusion that the risks and pain for a campaign in Norway significantly out weights any possible benefits. So I just leave Norway alone. Given that, and the changes made to the map and the ability to use my strat for a tactical attack, I go after and conquer Denmark on turn 2 with a German infantry corps I've railed in position on turn 1. My Denmark attack is to hit the 2-step Danish garrison with the German BB, followed by the German Start used for a tactical attack. If the Danish garrison is still alive after this then I use the German infantry corps to finish it off and capture Copenhagen. If it was finished I just march the infantry corps into an empty Copenhagen.

Post Reply

Return to “Commander Europe at War : AAR's”