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  1. #281
    Colonel CptEasy's Avatar
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    Sudden Carnage

    Chapter XVI – Operation Hammer Sickle Part IV










    Countries played by humans: UK, France, Soviet Union, Germany, Italy, Japan








    Recap: Operation Hammer Sickle, the German revenge on the West, has just started with an attack on Morbash. Also, three paratroop divisions have landed behind the enemy lines. This is do or die. If Germany fails to throw the Allies back, they will be stuck in a stagnant 2-front war that is likely to be their doom.













    December 1st, 1939

    ::When the red light was lit and the first trooper jumped out from the JU-52 transport Lucas felt tension build as a knot in his stomach. The fly-in had been all smooth and they even saw explosions from ground combat far below across that thin silver line that was the Rhine. When it was Lucas Bauers turn, he jumped without hesitation. They’d been told there would be no enemies in the area and it was all quiet as he slowly descended in his chute. It was a beautiful landscape that opened up under his feet. It could almost have been home. He saw a lot of people there on the ground and watched for weapons. The wind was gentle, but it was damn cold and he was rattling his teeth before he landed. He was afraid of the grass going hard from freezing but it was alright. Lukas made a perfect landing and quickly assembled his chute.::







    Village in St Wendel.

    ::Lucas was greeted by a lot of happy Germans and started to really enjoy his first combat jump. It was even better than training were an angry officer awaited you on ground and had comments about your landing. Here, he was a hero. It was a good move to become a soldier. The suddenly, Martin came running and collected Lucas as he was in the middle of kissing a woman that was a little too old for him, but eager as few. ::

    - The Führer would cry from fury if he saw you now, Lucas. Götterdämmerung! Don’t you hear the gunfire? There’s French over there and they’re attacking!

    ::As Lucas pushed the red-cheeked mother of three away, he lifted his head and listened. Jesus wept! It was true. He could hear the distant explosions from mortar fire. They left the civilians and rushed away, gathering up Kleine Tobias and the others. Two men were missing but that was to be expected. They ended up with a man from another company as well.::

    ::The French troopers had come from the province of Trier, passing through a little village on northern St Wendel and across a bridge. A couple of companies had already made it to the “Wendel-side” when the paras landed and it quickly came to sharp combat. The French soldiers still had the bridge head when Lucas platoon arrived. The French had mortars, machine guns and snipers in the village which made it nasty to go too close. The bridge itself soon came under similar fire from the German paras which made it extremely difficult from French troops to move there. As the French on the bridge-head were surrounded by fields, it was difficult for the still disorganized paratroopers to mount a powerfull enough attack to dislodge them. Instead, they took position up on a hill over watching the bridge-head and from there they poured all kinds of disaster over their enemies.::

    ::Lucas and his mates came running in threw the mortar fire and found a ditch from were they to their fire positions. Martin had been hit by shrapnel, but it was just a small one and he had tied a cloth around the wound. Another mate had wrenched his ankle in the landing and the pain started to reach through his first eagerness now and he leaned back in the ditch and groaned. Lucas fired away a couple of rounds against an abandoned truck next to the bridge, but it was so far away he didn’t know if he hit. There was actually not much he could do except being prepared for an attack. For now, this was all a mortar duel until either side mustered the initiative to attack or pull back.::














    December 2nd-3rd, 1939

    It surprised the German leadership that the French retreated from Neunkirchen before Morbach. Neunkirchen was not threatened. The French troops there had been successful in keeping the Germans east of the Rhine River, and a lot of the Third Reich’s soldiers had died trying to cross. Now, the French retreated in good order.

    24 hours later the defenders in Morbach gave up and retreated, in a lot worse conditions than in Neunkirchen. Now, a rough week after the launch of Operation Hammer Sickle, the Axis had opened up all the way to the Maginot Line. It was a very successful start.

    In the north, were the Allies were strong and had perfect defensive positions, the Germans had launched attacks to tie them up, in the face of really bad odds. It was a costly strategy, but it made it difficult for the Allies to react in a smooth and flexible way to the sudden threat. The Allies realized this and retreated from their northernmost province, probably nervous about the prospect of being cut off.












    December 5th, 1939

    It was quite hard going in St Wendel. The 2nd paratroopers had been thrown into combat the minute they landed in some disarray. They had very good defensive lands but the French was still more numerous. Still, after a week of battle they hadn’t yet any real problem with keeping the French on the other side of the river.

    ::After the first day of mortar exchanges, the French made a night-time assult up the hill in a true world war one style. It was chaotic and scary. You didn’t know how many they were, where they were and how determined they were. Lucas and his friends still held the same ditch where they had been sitting very closely under blankets to keep warm. Now they fired away in the dark and aimed at every muzzle flash they saw. When lights were shot up in the air, hell broke lose until it turned black again. The French lost fate after a while and returned. When dawn came they realized theat quite few men on each side had died.::

    :: During lunch the next day, their company was relieved by another company and move away. Apparently, the division commander, major general Schaal, tried to get his troops in some kind of order after the jump. When leaving the ditch Kleine Tobias was shot in the head by a French sniper and died then and there in a pool of blood. It was quite terrifying. One second laughing at their replacement and the next second dead. In a quite bad mood they were marched off to another sector along the river and took up guard duty there.::

    ::It was a good spot above a slight slope towards the river, amongst the tree-line. They dug trenches and camouflaged them with branches, twigs and mosses. Then followed a few quite calm days. They had a company HQ some hundred meters into the woods and as not much happened they could alternate so a few men could kick back at the HQ and take it easy. All the time, they heard the battle continue around the village.::

    ::The fourth day, they replaced the company that had replaced them by the village. The whole place was full of craters. The French still held a little bit of ground east of the bridge. A German day-time push had been met by massive small arms fire from the village had consequently had been cancelled. The French had not tried any more attack here, but during the night, news came that the French attacked across another bridge further west and had made some initial progress. As it was believed that the French had moved away forces from the village opposite them, and news had come of German reinforcements by two infantry divisions, a counter-attack was initiated during the first grey morning hours.::

    ::Lucas crawled along the muddy and semi-frozen ground towards the bridge along with two entire companies. After the five days of shelling, the ground was full of suitable holes to use for cover. The pulse was already quite high within him, but he felt excitement too. If intel were right, they only faced a spread out, half sleeping company of the other side. It would be so nice to flush them out. The left side of the bridge, however, had fallen down, so it was just a thin corridor over to the other side. It would be a hellish run. It was quite impressive how so many creeping men could be so quiet. I was clear night who showed the first coppery signs of dawn. In front of Lucas, his squad leader had stopped and made the sign of laying low, and so they did. As, he was laying there, he felt the cold slowly creeping up from the ground, through his soaked uniform pants, starting to chill him. Minutes ticked away, feeling like hours. Some men from another platoon would go first. Lucas saw then moving towards the bridge in a crouch. Then came a few gun shots from the other side, tearing the night time silence apart in a dreadful way. A few seconds later, he heart the muffled, short sound from their own mortars firing away. Pah – pah – pah – pah…::

    - For the Fürer!

    ::It was the company leader screaming, and the call was taken up by all the men like a wild roar of battle-rage. Lucas Bauer pushed himself up from the ground, yelling madly and as he charged at the bridge, his men all around him, the mortar shells hit the village, just on the other side of the river, giving bright colors to the black-and-white dawn. The counter-attack had commenced. The French would be kicked out of St Wendel!::












    December 7th, 1939

    The magnitude of Operation Hammer Sickle must have been realized by the Allies by now. Their holdings in occupied Germany just crumbled. The French took the most casualties. The Brits fought tighter and preferred to retreat in good order. They gave up the north with a rather low death-toll. The casualties of the Wehrmacht were higher here due to the both terrains and fortresses. Still, Germany gained ground by the hours and in Trier, more than one full French army corps was pounded by two brand new German panzer divisions . The “Hammer”-part of the great German winter offensive seemed more and more a triumph.












    December 8th, 1939

    The German advance into Soviet land obviously succeeded in making STAVKA real nervous. The Russian troops who previously tried to dislodge the Italians now moved north eastwards to answer to what they perceived as a German threat. No such threat existed though as the 1st Panzer had the orders do dig in but fall back the minute they ended up in a situation they could not easily handle.

    ::Noice and light discipline was firm here in the newly conquered lands. A majority of the units fighting beside them taking the province had pulled back to German (Polish) soil, so they were not too many Germans in this hostile land. Behind a thin line of scouts were a more powerful line of camouflaged panzers and behind that were company HQs and reserves. Here, it was ok to have a smoke if you were sitting in certain areas and it was the closest to pleasure the men had. Heinrich, Bobby and a few men from panzer crews in the platoon had a few hours off and smoked, ate and chatted away. As no big fires were allowed they were all dressed in heavy winter clothing with some added blankets around their shoulders. Some had Russian winter hats on, but they were only used in safe areas as the risk of getting shot by mistake otherwise was big. This “safe area” was a few logs in an open square around an empty fuel drum with a few burning billets in. The logs were surrounded by a frame of pine branches made like a high fence, blocking cigarette light and the muffled talking. The land was covered in snow and the temperature was a couple of degrees below freezing. Still, being in Soviet made the soldiers proud and the mood around the drum, emitting a weak warm light onto the soldiers pale faces, was high – in a cautious way.::












    December 10th-14th, 1939

    During half a week in the middle of December, the Axis won several important battles against the Allies. It was obvious – they had already been knocked out of balance and even if it was impossible to catch any enemies in pockets, it was not possible for the enemies to stop their backwards tumble. Initially, Germany had sustained the highest losses in a few battles, but now as the operation was in motion, the Allies bled the most.

    The paratroopers excelled by killing the most enemies in relation to losses. In St Wendel, that was a 2,5 French for every German. In the city of Saarbrücken, it was almost 9 French for every dead Japanese paratrooper, which was extraordinary. A Japanese machine-gunner claimed to have killed over 50 enemies during the two weeks of battle.












    December 17th, 1939

    The attack on Bitburg was the first real challenge in the last week or so. The defending troops here were well dug in among a system of bunkers made of cement and steel. They also had light tanks at their disposal. Still, in the face of the well coordinated German attack, the Allied situation did not look too bright. Their whole defense seemed to crumble in the face of the fascist charge.


    ...........
    Last edited by CptEasy; 24-03-2011 at 18:49.
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  2. #282
    Field Marshal Cybvep's Avatar

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    That looks spectacular. The Allies have lost almost all the territory they took from you and you managed to shorten the frontline. No pockets, unfortunately. You could try to attack the Maginot Line near the FRA-LUX border, even if only as a diversion. Also, you will be forced to choose your future strategy very soon. Who should be attacked first?

  3. #283
    Hi again, apologies for not posting in a while, been a bit busy...

    Just caught up though so will post again; what I will say is wow from the last update - The attack seems to have gone more or less flawlessly and the "Hammer" has been an amazing success from what I can see. It's a shame that no pocket has been formed, but the important thing is the West Wall is more or less taken now and your western front is secured. One thought is this...Although no pocket is formed, there are lots of French troops that will be stuck in the north and have to travel through Belgium and much of France to support the Maginot line in any large manner, a large scale assault on the southern portion of the maginot line could be plausible, thus drawing many more French troops to plug the whole and prevent a major breakthrough, opening up the space again in the north for an attack through Belgium - Destroying the West does now appear to be a possibility when, before, it was almost out of the question - Kudos for that!

    One thing though, you can't afford for the east to be too lightly defended, if you decide to go for a large scale assault into France (which you should do IMO), you certainly won't want the bear tearing at your back...

  4. #284
    Field Marshal TheBromgrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CptEasy View Post
    Can’t say too much here due to strategical reasons. You both have a point. It would be really tough in MP but that’s also the reason why UK would probably be of guard. But we’ll see…
    This almost makes me think you actually tried it We can only guess what's happened so far, since your posts are about a year behind where your MP game is.

    It'd be interesting to see the events so far from the Allied/Comintern perspective. I'm sure the UK and French players were more than a little nervous at the prospect of having all those divisions be trapped near Luxembourg.
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  5. #285
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    Good going so far, but now you are facing the Maginot line itself with the Allies able to sneak through Belgium. No chance to cut off those forces plus you need to be alert to Russian ambitions in the east.

  6. #286
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    Would attacking Belgium have been an option? With a parachute drop into Eupen (the border province) you could have cut off their retreat route.

    Of course this would have put them into danger from the Belgians but the strategic location of Eupen in this scenario is extremely tempting... they don't have access through the Netherlands or Luxemburg, do they?

  7. #287
    Some of you asked for an allied comment at this time. And I can see why as this is a crucial moment. I'm the UK player from this game. At the time I was fighting battles in Asia as well as north Africa so my focus on this front was somewhat limited. Reports from the Russian player had notified us about the slowing Axis advance and the Japanese paratroopers had actually been spotted before the attack. We knew the enemy was coming.

    As seen we had troops in the Maginot line to prevent a drop or a sudden breakthrough. But leaving the targeted provinces without any defense was an unintended mistake. The Axis maneuver was very well conducted and as soon as we realized we were fighting a loosing battle priorities was avoiding encirclements. There were actually a number of close calls with retreating units barely making it back to the area behind them before it too fell in battle. A small comfort is that German troops were so superior that they'd been able to brake through even without the paradrops... at a higher cost of course.

  8. #288
    Field Marshal Cybvep's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leviathan07 View Post
    Would attacking Belgium have been an option? With a parachute drop into Eupen (the border province) you could have cut off their retreat route.

    Of course this would have put them into danger from the Belgians but the strategic location of Eupen in this scenario is extremely tempting... they don't have access through the Netherlands or Luxemburg, do they?
    The Belgians probably have troops in Eupen.

  9. #289
    Colonel CptEasy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cybvep View Post
    That looks spectacular. The Allies have lost almost all the territory they took from you and you managed to shorten the frontline. No pockets, unfortunately. You could try to attack the Maginot Line near the FRA-LUX border, even if only as a diversion. Also, you will be forced to choose your future strategy very soon. Who should be attacked first?
    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Good going so far, but now you are facing the Maginot line itself with the Allies able to sneak through Belgium.
    Diversion for what? Anyway, guys - I really fear the Line. I made one attack there by pure mistake and got like “5” for ratio. No way I’m taking on the Maginot! But, fortunately, there are other possibilities…

    Quote Originally Posted by ADEE1 View Post
    Hi again, apologies for not posting in a while, been a bit busy...
    Destroying the West does now appear to be a possibility when, before, it was almost out of the question - Kudos for that!
    One thing though, you can't afford for the east to be too lightly defended, if you decide to go for a large scale assault into France (which you should do IMO), you certainly won't want the bear tearing at your back...
    Good to have u back ADEE. Yes, things are actually progressing better than expected. East is a little bit weak… I know… but I really got to bring a decent force to the West. I really need a break through. But so far, the Red Army is quiet. Soviet have obviously, as Maxyboy stated, already realized I will target the West. Still, he’s choosing to be calm. Maybe he fears the winter. Maybe the Jap is giving him a mouthful… I dunno but I am happy he is leaving my eastern flank alone. We’ll see for how long that will last.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBromgrev View Post
    This almost makes me think you actually tried it We can only guess what's happened so far, since your posts are about a year behind where your MP game is.
    Future will tell… right mr Brom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leviathan07 View Post
    Would attacking Belgium have been an option? With a parachute drop into Eupen (the border province) you could have cut off their retreat route. Of course this would have put them into danger from the Belgians but the strategic location of Eupen in this scenario is extremely tempting... they don't have access through the Netherlands or Luxemburg, do they?
    Quote Originally Posted by Cybvep View Post
    The Belgians probably have troops in Eupen.
    Yes they have. Interesting idea though, but I have other plans. One of you guys have actually already guessed it… You’ll see soon enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maxyboy View Post
    Reports from the Russian player had notified us about the slowing Axis advance and the Japanese paratroopers had actually been spotted before the attack. We knew the enemy was coming.
    Man… did you see the paras!? Damnit! We placed to close to the front… Was it scouting fighters or with strategical bombing runs? Well… as I wrote some chapters ago I really had the feeling you knew we were coming although I couldn’t figure out how you knew it… except the decline in offensives in the East.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maxyboy View Post
    A small comfort is that German troops were so superior that they'd been able to break through even without the paradrops... at a higher cost of course.
    I believe you are right.
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  10. #290
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    Nothing spells word "Offensive" more clearly than paratroopers.
    Probably interceptors told the story, they are often used instead of "real" reconnaissance.

    I wonder how India goes... that's the deciding factor at the moment.

  11. #291
    Colonel CptEasy's Avatar
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    Sudden Carnage

    Chapter XVII – Operation Hammer Sickle Part V










    Countries played by humans: UK, France, Soviet Union, Germany, Italy, Japan









    Recap: Operation Hammer Sickle, the German revenge on the West have started out as an success. The Allies seemed to have been shocked by the power of the Fascist tide. On the Eastern side of the German Reich, Soviet Union is still calm… like a good bear should be during winter

    Question is – what happens in the rest of the world during the first part of Operation Hammer Sickle..?













    December 15th, 1939

    The Royal Navy was more or less engaged over the entire world. The Regia Marina fought savagely in the Med and the Japanese navy crept closer to the British holdings with some small battles – and the convoy war was full on. In order to poke the Brits from yet one direction and test for weaknesses, the Kriegsmarine sailed out from the Baltic Sea. If the German leadership had hoped to find a weak spot, they were greatly disappointed. The Brits had blocked the Eastern Norwegian Trench with a substantial task force. It became an intense night-time fire fight while Raeder tried to disengage and retreat as quickly as possible. He succeeded it the end, with plenty of ships being damaged. No ships were lost on either side but it was clear that this route was shut for the time being.












    December 20th, 1939

    The surface warships of Kriegsmarine might have been blocked in the Baltic Sea, but their Wolf Packs were not. The Royal Navy had succeeded in sinking a few u-boats (1 unit) of the oldest model , but the newer models could easily avoid the British sub-hunters and sunk about 20 convoys a week. The Italians claimed close to a similar count. That was reassuring. Not only did Britain have problems of getting resources in and supply out, they were bound to spend a lot of industrial capacity on the construction of new tonnage and escorts.












    December 20th, 1939

    The Italians in North Africa were now confined to Tarabulus where they fought desperately for survival. One small comfort was that Britain only seemed to reach the province with carrier planes and the Italian interceptors could dispatch these fairly easy. Still, the British ground troops were more formidable soldiers than the Italians who consisted mostly of militias.












    December 29th, 1939

    More than a week later, Germany got the great news that the Brits had cancelled their attack on Tarabulus. Italy had total air superiority and after bombing the attackers to submission, their tactical bombers now started to bomb important road hubs trying to deny the Brits their supply.

    After all the defeats in North Africa, this was a great victory for the Italians as it denied the Brits a secure front. Not that the Italians, being mostly militias, posed a distinct threat, but they could not be ignored. Now the Brits had to reorganize and think again.

    Well done Italy!












    December 20th, 1939

    The Japanese offensive against the United Kingdom, with Singapore as the final goal, went according to plan.












    December 30th, 1939

    10 days later, Kuala Lumpur was in Japanese hands and they also managed to outmaneuver a British theatre headquarter and an infantry division. The fall of Singapore seemed only a matter of time.

    Well done Japan!












    December 30th, 1939

    Hardly unexpected, the Red Army massed a powerful attack on Shepetivka, obviously wanting to throw back the Germans from Russian soil. The German leadership was mildly amused about the enormous amount of troops STAVKA needed to assemble before they dared an attack. It was actually quite reassuring, especially as this defense was not designed to hold. The German forces immediately retreated.

    ::Heinrich Hahn and his men celebrated Christmas in Soviet Union. It was a quiet merrymaking. They knew they were too few men around to feel safe so light and sound discipline were rigid. Still, the moment as such was truly powerful. In the face of quite exceptional odds, after Wehrmacht had switched focus to the west, they had stilled thrown the Red Army aside and pushed into Soviet. Heinrich mind had drifted away and he saw before him how his family and friends got the news about 1st Panzer reaching Soviet. They would be so proud. Michael Wittmann seemed unsurprised and unmoved by the event.::

    -My friends. My fellow soldaten. Why are you surprised? It is not about numbers - but quality, skill and determination. We will crush them. Do not doubt it. And when this war is over and you have your children asking you about the glorious war, you can tell them that you were first… first German soldier into Soviet.

    ::Michael was a tank commander of few words, but his words always heartened the men. Baltazar Woll and Heinrich looked at each other and nodded with serious faces. It was a great moment. The day after Christmas, the routines were the same and the freezing cold was the same but the men felt even stronger and unified. They would not fail Germany. They would make sure that nothing but victory awaited in the end… or die trying.::

    ::When a powerful Red Army offensive charged them from all sides they retreated immediately. It did not feel good at all, retreating through areas they had been fighting hard to win.::

    - Do not sulk, brave friends. We will be back here soon enough.

    ::Wittmann’s voice in the headpiece made it feel a little better but as Heinrich drove past a burned out light Panzer, its dead driver a friend of his, it still felt sour.::

    Elsewhere on the Russian front everything was calm.












    December 28th (resource sign from 25th), 1939

    Bitburg is back in German hands! It is a great victory. Even if it seemed to be a difficult battle from the beginning the Allies still lost more men. Only two provinces remained to be taken before the Fatherland was liberated and the goals for “Hammer” are achieved. The French in Aachen have been able to dig in well during the battle of Bitburg and are now difficult to dislodge. One brigade of engineers is involved in the battle and another engineer-supported division is on its way. With air superiority for the majority of the time, it is still hoped than the French will bend in time.

    But there is a greater bad than all the good. Even though the German merchants and diplomats had done all in their might, Germany still can’t fill the need of rare materials. They have been selling energy, steel and even a little bit of oil to an extent when almost all recourses have a negative balance – only to stall the day when the stockpile of rare materials is out. That day, in the face of all the efforts, is closing in.




    ...........




    Authors note: This is doom closing in. Troopwise, I think I might have been able to pull this whole strategy off – but my unfortunate lack of resources-planning will kill me. Still, it will take some time for the effects of the lack of resources will really hit me on the strategic level. I must basically break one of my opponents before that happens. It is not impossible, but far from easy. Well, at least I have a plan. Operation Hammer Sickle must continue.
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  12. #292
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    Either that or link up with the Japanese via Italy. They should be able to occupy enough resources to share between the three Axis powers while both the 'democrats' and the 'communists' are concentrating on Italy and Germany. What about the diplomatic front in general and the military front on the French / Italian border? Any suspicious Allied fleet movements around the Italian boot? Coming to think of it, it might have been a good idea for the UK player in this game (no M-R pact) to concentrate his efforts on Italy, trying to knock that country outwith switft landings on the boot.

  13. #293
    Is it not an option to get some emergency trades off of the other Axis human players? Even if it is unsustainable for them, GER's survival is vital to be kept alive and needs those rares even if at the detriment of the other nations, at least until you are able to capture some resource dumps and stabilise the situation anyway.

  14. #294
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    In our game when we had deadly fuel shortage, we balanced trades that all Axis nations would run out of fuel around the same time.
    I do not think Germany is so much more vital than other axis.

  15. #295
    Quote Originally Posted by Traks View Post
    In our game when we had deadly fuel shortage, we balanced trades that all Axis nations would run out of fuel around the same time.
    I do not think Germany is so much more vital than other axis.
    Yes, but my point is that Germany needs a large pump of investment in the short term to ease the pressure slightly, before reverting to a more sustainable solution amongst all axis nations. Whilst the situation is as it is now, you simply cannot afford Germany to collapse (although not to the extent that you make other axis nations collapse either). Out of curiosity, what is the rare material situation amongst the other axis nations? Would this sort of strategy even be viable?

  16. #296
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADEE1 View Post
    Yes, but my point is that Germany needs a large pump of investment in the short term to ease the pressure slightly, before reverting to a more sustainable solution amongst all axis nations. Whilst the situation is as it is now, you simply cannot afford Germany to collapse (although not to the extent that you make other axis nations collapse either). Out of curiosity, what is the rare material situation amongst the other axis nations? Would this sort of strategy even be viable?
    In 1939? Hell no.
    In 1941? Very viable.

    Japan can provide rares for Axis, from India of course and Netherlands islands. Those islands are fuel-rich too, making them prime target for invasion.
    In our last game Japan was running +150 rares/day.
    Italy can go from rare negative to neutral state after taking on all Balkans.
    In meantime, Italy can provide a lot of fuel to Germany, thanks to energy-oil conversion.
    Only problem is that Allies usually run at least couple of subs near Japan, intercepting some convoys. When Italy and Japan links borders, this gets much easier.

  17. #297
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    Any input from the UK / French players here as to how the submarine warfare actually concerned you guys? Did you feel shortages or where you worried at this stage at all? IIRC Britain starting in '38 does have quite a lot of merchants and escorts and even if they lose some 200 ships, they still do have enough reserves without disbanding lots of active routes.

  18. #298
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Any input from the UK / French players here as to how the submarine warfare actually concerned you guys? Did you feel shortages or where you worried at this stage at all? IIRC Britain starting in '38 does have quite a lot of merchants and escorts and even if they lose some 200 ships, they still do have enough reserves without disbanding lots of active routes.
    Last comment before I shut up
    In all our MP games UK always runs out of convoys. To be more precise, escort ships. And we have basically halved convoy/escort cost.
    Of course it takes some time, but until India is lost there are a lot of convoys going that direction. And they always pass Italian coasts, so until Gib is closed, Italian subs also have their happy times. Situation is better with 2.04d/e, as they made ASW stronger so we have lost slightly more subs than in previous game. But still, enemy is out of escorts and mostly runs undefended routes.

  19. #299
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    Either that or link up with the Japanese via Italy. They should be able to occupy enough resources to share between the three Axis powers while both the 'democrats' and the 'communists' are concentrating on Italy and Germany.
    Quote Originally Posted by ADEE1 View Post
    Is it not an option to get some emergency trades off of the other Axis human players? Even if it is unsustainable for them, GER's survival is vital to be kept alive and needs those rares even if at the detriment of the other nations, at least until you are able to capture some resource dumps and stabilise the situation anyway.
    Quote Originally Posted by ADEE1 View Post
    Out of curiosity, what is the rare material situation amongst the other axis nations? Would this sort of strategy even be viable?
    The Med is blocked so Japan and Italy can’t really trade. Germany could possible trade with Japan (who have no real problems with Rares) but it would be so painfully easy for Britain and France to raid those. It would cost more than it would taste… Germany and Italy are trading… but not Rares at the moment. Italy’s stockpile is of course also affected by the unintentionally early war entry.

    Quote Originally Posted by Traks View Post
    Last comment before I shut up
    In all our MP games UK always runs out of convoys. To be more precise, escort ships. And we have basically halved convoy/escort cost.
    Of course it takes some time, but until India is lost there are a lot of convoys going that direction. And they always pass Italian coasts, so until Gib is closed, Italian subs also have their happy times. Situation is better with 2.04d/e, as they made ASW stronger so we have lost slightly more subs than in previous game. But still, enemy is out of escorts and mostly runs undefended routes.
    Don’t shut up, Traks You’re comments are interesting. I also felt, during my run as UK, that I didn’t have any chance to really hurt the raiders. I have the impression that is slightly more successful now, as they have managed intercept several times, but it’s still a tough situation for UK. Decreasing cost for convoys sounds interesting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    What about the diplomatic front in general and the military front on the French / Italian border? Any suspicious Allied fleet movements around the Italian boot? Coming to think of it, it might have been a good idea for the UK player in this game (no M-R pact) to concentrate his efforts on Italy, trying to knock that country outwith switft landings on the boot.
    Can’t say too much about UK for obvious reasons. French/Italian border is calm and quite weak on both sides. Both nations have prioritized their troops to other locations. UK is all over the Med so it’s hard to say what’s suspicious. If they want to do an amphibious assault – they can do it whenever they want. Still, there’s quite a lot of Brits in France so I am doubtful they have enough for a large scale invasion, right now.

    The all over diplomatic front is quite static as the factions counter-influence each other. I will give a heads up if any new country joins any faction. Belgium seem awfully close to joining the Allies, though.
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  20. #300
    So... How does few diamonds save Ger from losing ....
    Nothing to say.

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