Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Jeremy Mac Donald » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:29 pm

Turn 22
Situation gets ever more concerning every turn. Boston has issues though in some ways here is were a simple attrition strategy feels like it is working. Matt does throw me back as usual and I think one of my Infantry Divisions just evaporates under the pressure. Nonetheless this turn I fight my way back into Albany. Not going to keep it this turn but there is a sense that the endless back and forth is slowly turning my way. Though here I try and pull off a bit of a move in the second part of my turn and instead end up with a PanzerGrenadier Division too far forward with not enough linking it to the rear...so it will probably die on Matt's turn. On the other hand I just landed a SS Panzer Division and SS PanzerGrenadier Division here so solid reinforcements.

No Infantry here this turn as the situation in the West has me so concerned and I think it is time to shift to the heavy reinforcements of Infantry that I had planned for the West.

The Wilmington Bridgehead is especially quite with only a few attacks by each of us as Matt seems to have mostly stripped this front down and I have much of my forces resupplying or shifting fronts.

The West see's most of the action and has me sweating bullets. Not a good sign. Matt clearly is pouring reinforcements to face off against my drive across the Missouri and I am less then certain about my own forces ability to handle the situation. Matt manages to kill one of the Panzer Divisions on his turn, admittedly I shoved everything forward here with abandon knowing full well that there was substantial risk. He fights his way out with some of his forces and I kill some of them but I can only hold much of my bridgehead over the Missouri very thinly. Panzer Divisions broken down into Brigades, Infantry Brigades, that sort of thing. I poured in some reinforcements into the West but this is pretty far forward and Matt's reinforcements are going to arrive in force up here before mine. If I can stave off disaster for 3 turns I will probably have enough forces to regain control of the situation.

That said I expect Matt to start a bridge bombing campaign in the West to reduce the supplies I can get up here. He really has not been bombing my bridges for some time and I suspect he has been aiming to preserve strength for the critical point.

Meanwhile near Memphis I bring up the Engineers and line the Mississippi. Stop and think about this move as I am not committed this turn but probably will be next. So far in this match things have not been going well. Can't really do much damage to Matt – the spread has barely moved in about 10 turns now and its not that great a spread. Matt is able to replace most lost forces and even railed out some of the Reserve Garrison Divisions away this turn. I have lost a Division here and there myself which can't be replaced but my losses, in terms of lost units is pretty low. Lost Rifle Squads are more substantial but not completely out of control.

The problem is that the situation has just been too static. I have not beaten Matt's armies. The Replacement Rate is high, though not completely out of control, and I have not really progressed. I need to change this situation and the clock is ticking. From this position I pretty much have two options – I don't love either. I am leaning toward an operation where I jump the Mississippi just north of Memphis while sending my reserves resupplying at Charlotte racing West. I close the link, hopefully with an airdrop while also securing the supply line down here.

It faces a few problems. It might not go off as well as I hoped – but I think this really means that Matt manages to slip away with no real losses or worse finds a way to kill some of my airborne (if they can even land – Allied airpower might preclude that). The bigger problem is this is not a game winning move. It cuts off five Industrial cities and maybe some Allied units but it is not going anywhere critical. Maybe worse Matt probably does not react to the move all that fast. In fact that is kind of important to it working but if Matt is not really being pressured by this it is a lot of resources I am using that Matt is not.

The problem is the alternative is not clearly great either. Instead I send the forces in the East to continue their push north. I think this works OK but I drive Matt back 7 hexs, give or take, over the next 10 turns – and this is optimistic and well so what? I doubt I even get Baltimore. In the West the Army races north to cross the Missouri. It does so and relieves the pressure on the forces that are currently over the Missouri. Matt pulls away from the fight frantically bridge bombing. The problem is that 10 turns goes by and my situation is dramatically worse and we are just going into the turn 30 stretch. I protect my Western Army but I can't imagine I beat Matt's – he just gets away ready to fight the next battle on the East side of the Mississippi and I think his Replacement Rate is out of control.

This alternative feels a bit safer immediately but puts me in an increasingly desperate situation by turn 30. If I can capture the five Industrial Cities in the south I am OK going into the fighting past turn 30 and maybe even better if I can also start to capture the North Eastern Cities. I don't have to make a decision until after I see Matt's turn but I think this plan is the better of the two. Neither is great but I think the cut off the south Plan best balances risk and reward. It is not a game winning move but keeps things in play for longer and maybe helps me find the move that is. The alternative gets me into a desperate do or die situation on turn 30 but it does help to take the pressure off my forces on the far side of the Missouri.

Turn 22.png
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Desperately trying to secure a Bridgehead over the Missouri
“Such subtle covenants shall be made, till peace itself is war in masquerade.”
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby xandamere » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:24 am

Turn 22:

Both Eastern fronts continue to be a slow slog as Jeremy once more pushes forward. Albany falls again. Of note is that Jeremy finally starts to approach Florida, but most of the corps that mobilizes down there is already on the field. I think in the next 2-4 turns it’s going to be time to withdraw from my Mississippi river line and pull back, as the Axis are finally almost to Atlanta, and I’ll need those Mississippi river troops to help defend around St. Louis.

In the West, Jeremy pushes forward and, as I expected (and feared), he is able to kill off a handful of units. Nothing too serious, though, and now my armor is in position for what I hope is a significant counterattack. Out in the Western desert, Jeremy has sneakily cut the rail line northeast of Albuquerque, so troops being railed from Mexico have to go much farther around.

Just about my entire air force is in reorg this turn, so sadly no bomber support will be available for my counterattacks this turn.

Albany is retaken once more. I have to imagine there are no civilians still living there. Out west my counterattacks are largely successful, and as I suspected, I don’t see a lot of Axis units in this crossing...though I’m sure more are on the way. Disappointingly, the 3rd National Guard Army was in reorg this turn (despite barely having seen combat), and almost all of its divisions are on this front and were not able to join in the counterattack. Had they been able it would have been far more devastating, but as it is, I’m happy with the results and I feel like unless Jeremy has a lot of troops that are right next door, this crossing of the Missouri is in some trouble. His rail line isn't close enough to this front and it's too far for anything except mobile troops to get here quickly, so if there isn't a large stream of infantry units a turn or so back from the line that I just haven't spotted, I think I'm likely to be able to push him back across the river.

The Western army counterattacks Jeremy's crossing of the Missouri. Worth noting I have 7 armored divisions, mostly close to full strength and supply, as well as a full NG army and various other infantry/artillery units here.

West turn 22.jpg
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Ben Turner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:06 am

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:At least two (I did not look at the Armour or Cavalry) and at least two in Arizona.

What I am really confused by is that you don't remember what you did. This is Ben Turner...he had a system - he developed a system and then he applied the system he developed...that is what Ben Turner does. Don't you remember working out a system?


I do but it was just to scatter the units so that no two units in a row arrived in the same part of the map.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Ben Turner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:11 am

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:I note last turn that I expected Matt to withdraw from Charleston. I am actually a bit offended when Matt does not withdraw. It is like he has such low respect form my army that he does not even need to withdraw when the military situation seems to demand it.


From Matt's screenshot it looks like the idea was to get you to concentrate on bagging a couple of brigades at Charlotte so that he could have a turn or two to rebuild the new line further back. Abandon the city and you just screen it and the panzers crash into the unprepared line.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Ben Turner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:16 am

xandamere wrote:Another weird thing about TOAW that I just discovered (or at least think this is what’s going on): it looks like a unit that’s scheduled to mobilize in a hex will not do so if the hex has a broken bridge.


This is only true if it's a super river. A super river hex is not a valid deployment location for a ground unit- unless that hex has a bridge on it. In fact in the editor if you want to put a ground unit on a super river hex you either have to add a bridge or remove the river, then put the map back once you've deployed the unit.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Ben Turner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 2:34 pm

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:If you look at the above screen shot you see 2 highlighted Germany Infantry Divisions. There are 5 German Infantry Divisions arriving every turn. each front is getting pretty much equal. 2 to two fronts 1 to the third and then the same next turn with a different front getting only 1.


I don't like this dribbling approach. As the Axis, each turn there's always one front which is crying out for more infantry and I like to send that front all the infantry or maybe all but one division. The Allied player really knows it when five or six German infantry divisions hit the line, especially in the early going, whereas dribbling in one or two each turn just leads to a slow grinding forward which doesn't really serve the Axis at all.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Ben Turner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:52 pm

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:Meanwhile near Memphis I bring up the Engineers and line the Mississippi. Stop and think about this move as I am not committed this turn but probably will be next. So far in this match things have not been going well. Can't really do much damage to Matt – the spread has barely moved in about 10 turns now and its not that great a spread. Matt is able to replace most lost forces and even railed out some of the Reserve Garrison Divisions away this turn. I have lost a Division here and there myself which can't be replaced but my losses, in terms of lost units is pretty low. Lost Rifle Squads are more substantial but not completely out of control.

The problem is that the situation has just been too static. I have not beaten Matt's armies. The Replacement Rate is high, though not completely out of control, and I have not really progressed. I need to change this situation and the clock is ticking. From this position I pretty much have two options – I don't love either. I am leaning toward an operation where I jump the Mississippi just north of Memphis while sending my reserves resupplying at Charlotte racing West. I close the link, hopefully with an airdrop while also securing the supply line down here.


The thing that makes this attack really attractive is that you've just given Matt a laser focus on your Missouri crossings. Another Allied turn and he will be thoroughly committed to a serious stand up fight here- then the other half of your Western army is suddenly in Western Tennessee.

I'd say, though, that you shouldn't be racing to link up with Charlotte. As you note there is no Allied army of the South to cut off, only a few brigades blocking the Mississippi crossings. Instead, I'd lunge north with the Ohio now on your left flank, probing for a crossing. It's actually not all that far until you're into Illinois from the southeast, and then you've actually created a problem for Matt that might force him to fight out of position for the first time in the entire match.

Ultimately though I doubt there's anything that can be done to save the Axis position here. It's overlooked- but the Allied army is actually phenomenally powerful at the start of the match, it's just that a) it's spread all over the map and b) it has low supply and readiness. If the Allied player is able to concentrate it and build it up to a combat-ready state without losing a lot of pieces, then the Axis have a serious problem.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Jeremy Mac Donald » Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:18 am

Ben Turner wrote:
The thing that makes this attack really attractive is that you've just given Matt a laser focus on your Missouri crossings. Another Allied turn and he will be thoroughly committed to a serious stand up fight here- then the other half of your Western army is suddenly in Western Tennessee.


I'd say, though, that you shouldn't be racing to link up with Charlotte. As you note there is no Allied army of the South to cut off, only a few brigades blocking the Mississippi crossings.
There is significantly more then that. There are probably 6 or 7 Divisions guarding the Mississippi below Memphis and I bet around that again scattered throughout the rest of the south screening stuff and guarding beaches. I've been watching his turns through the match and it is hard to know exactly what the force is down here but while it is not really large its not truly empty and abandoned either. That is actually Matt's style - if I sent two Divisions unsupported to besiege and storm Atlanta I bet he'd kill them.
Instead, I'd lunge north with the Ohio now on your left flank, probing for a crossing. It's actually not all that far until you're into Illinois from the southeast, and then you've actually created a problem for Matt that might force him to fight out of position for the first time in the entire match.

Lunge North? Matt is not really weak (see his screenshot on turn 20). I might push him back but I don't think his line breaks or anything. I mean it might work...I talk about this as an option in this AAR a few turns but conclude that I need to take the southern cities - I can't afford to attack so weakly that Matt realizes he can halt me while giving ground to the north or I get to turn 30 and his replacement rate goes from concerning to completely out of control. He has to much ground he can give to the north and it not be really critical. Up until this point I have not been super concerned about Industrial cities but now I can't ignore them any longer and they are starting to dictate my play.
Ultimately though I doubt there's anything that can be done to save the Axis position here. It's overlooked- but the Allied army is actually phenomenally powerful at the start of the match, it's just that a) it's spread all over the map and b) it has low supply and readiness. If the Allied player is able to concentrate it and build it up to a combat-ready state without losing a lot of pieces, then the Axis have a serious problem.

Well no spoilers but if we think back to the distant past the last time I beat you I essentially just pulverized your armies in the east until you broke...I would say that this was the theory I came into this match with. I expect that if I can get stuck in with the Allies eventually they crack under the constant fighting. That is how Mr. Frederiksen ultimately beat me as well.
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby Jeremy Mac Donald » Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:33 am

Turn 23
Well that could have been worse. Matt's counter attack in the West kills a Division but my forces here are not completely compromised. I desperately throw in reinforcements and launch some attacks to give me breathing room. By turns end I am feeling slightly more comfortable. I have managed to form a double line on this bridgehead so hopefully nothing to catastrophic takes place – though many of my units are shockingly depleted. I am fighting hard with completely redlined units. Forces I would pull off the front anywhere else but here things are too desperate. Still forces are being raced up here so I think there is a really good chance I can get a handle on things. That said I am less sure about advancing from here as the supply line is so stretched. Still if I am established here I think it will be pretty easy to effect secondary crossings that will get the supply situation under better control.

Meanwhile I jump the Mississippi north of Memphis and just manage to fight my way solidly over. I also race into the South from the East and find really no resistance. In fact I am able to simply drive up and grab the southern supply point. If I had known things would be going this well I would have started with an airdrop. Really that is my fear now – that Matt will deny me any real victory by simply railing away with his army and I will find the Tennessee River crossings blocked. I mean if that happens well I still grab five Industrial cities with comparative ease but I am hoping that Matt does not get out this turn and that I can close all possibility of retreat next turn with an air drop. That would hardly be decisive but anything that looks like a victory for my Axis would be welcome at this point. I will probably also try and jump the Tennessee as quickly as possible. If Matt is firmly ensconced behind the river, I probably give it up and just screen this part of the front but racing up to the Ohio from here forces Matt to defend a lot of terrain and maybe helps with other fronts.

Finally, I think I have amassed enough Italians to begin the advance toward Albuquerque. Big war of attrition out here would be a problem as I don't have a supply line up this way but might just swamp the place and grab it and less ideal but acceptable would be to pin a sizable Allied force in the area while I wait for the supply line to eventually be built out to this area.

Matt is still attacking, if lightly on the northern part of the Wilmington line. My own attacks are also light assault as I have few reserves out this way due to the shift toward the South.

Boston was a bigger issue. Matt drives me back killing a PanzerGrenadier Division. My own counter offensive is reasonable but it won't go anywhere. I seem to be stuck in an endless back and forth. Matt's concentration of artillery here is enough to always win back some hexs and the way I am going at it the result always seems to be roughly the same. At this point I have to find a way to change things up because I have two clear drives, and each can always be shoved back. I think I need to frontally assault Hartford because trying to cut it off restricts the attack to much. I also think I need to pile up on the Hudson so I can effect an offensive that simply takes to many hexs a turn for a few units with masses of artillery to retake.

Strategically the situation is clearly deteriorating. I've lost a number of good units over the last few turns without doing that much damage to Matt who seems able to replace his losses so far. The Loss Rate really closed up this turn and I need to quickly reverse that trend.

Turn 23.png
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Axis forces close in from both sides in the south - I totally regret not starting with an airdrop to block the rail lines out
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Re: Fall Grau 2.25 Jeremy (Axis) v.s. Matt (Allies) Match 5

Postby xandamere » Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:04 am

Ben Turner wrote:From Matt's screenshot it looks like the idea was to get you to concentrate on bagging a couple of brigades at Charlotte so that he could have a turn or two to rebuild the new line further back. Abandon the city and you just screen it and the panzers crash into the unprepared line.


Exactly right - I figured they would die to build me time to make trying to cross the mountains a really terrible experience for the Germans.
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