If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. – George Orwell
Kick the Frenchies' ass!
Part XXXI: July – December 1938
We need to focus now a little bit more on our production as 1938 comes slowly to an end. During the timeframe of this update we will finish some of the final units we are able to produce before the outbreak of World War II. Twelve additional infantry divisions and three light armor divisions as well as several planes are finished and deployed; I will give you a detailed overview about the strengh of my land, naval and air forces during one of the next updates when I will discuss the placement of my units and the overall strategy. In December 1938 our land forces are comprised of 134 divisions, which is just sufficient to stop the Poles in the east while we will advance in the west -- Eastern Prussia excluded, the question whether we will guard our exclave or not isn't answered yet, as it will entirely depend on the strengh of the Polish forces in Summer 1939. However, I'm not satisfied with the amount of armor I have: In December 1938 I will only have 10 light armor divisions, and we would need two more in oder to deploy a complete second panzer corps consisting of six divisions. Because at least 25 to 30 divisions are reserved for the static Eastern front, I can't just forego the second armor corps. My forces in the west are already thinner than usual, so I would like to have at least two mobile spearheads I can use for breakthroughs and encirclements; in the case of France probably only breakthroughs as I will try to take Paris in a lightning attack from three sides and the two routes that are most promising will receive one armor corps respectively. I'm also a little bit concerned about the size of my air force; I will possess only 17 squadrons in December 1938. Especially the lack of interceptors is worrisome; although not tragic, because another advantage of the France First strategy is, obviously, that the Allies will be unable to threaten my industrial base with intensive strategic bombardments. However, another three interceptor squadrons would be nevertheless very welcome in order to complete the one squadron inteceptor air unit in Essen. Two interceptor air units should be the minimum.
But neither additional tanks nor extra interceptors are going to be produced in 1938, so it's time to make a bargain that will make sure we get the units we desire: We will continue with the production of two PRs of light armor and two PRs of interceptors in 1939, one interceptor PR will be removed from active production as soon as it is finished, thus producing two light armor divisions and three interceptor squadrons. In order to compensate for the lack of IC for our updgrades that is caused by this continuing production we will start the update process earlier; as soon as the research on 1939 infantry is finished and the production of 1938 comes to an end, we will start upgrading our units.
This also sets, in principle, the F-Day, the day we will set Europe and the world on fire and attack France through the Low Countries. When you look at the screenshot you will see that the next light armor divisions will be finished on the 10th of July, 1939. We will therefore strike as soon as the armor divisions are deployed and adequately organized, which means that the F-Day will occur between the 20th and 30th of July 1939.
The other domestic affairs: The United Kingdom again managed to sabotage our production, delaying one PR of infantry by two months. Fortunately our pre-war infantry production has already been concluded. Perhaps I'll raise my intelligence funding again, but considering that I would have to trade again for money and that the counter espionage modifier will now rise in much smaller steps as we would surpass intelligence level ten, this is not a priority.
We also have finished some research, of course:
Konrad Zuse ---> Basic Decryption Devices | Heinz Guderian ---> Combined Arms Offensive
We're Germany, so it's about time that we research one of our key Blitzkrieg land doctrines. The Combined Arms Offensive is a 1938 technology that will provide our land units with numerous bonuses, most notably the astronomic improvements in morale, organization, positive battle events and HQ efficiency. Heinz Guderian is the best teachteam in the game for researching the mobility focus doctrines. He has all components of this technology and has nine skill points, so we will finish this tech certainly before the outbreak of the war.
Arado ---> Naval Bomber 1938 | Opel ---> Rear Area Vehicle Repair Shop
This will make the "repair" (i.e. the reinforcement speed) of all military units twenty percent more efficient, as well as the construction of air bases. The faster our units are reinforced during war, the better, as it not only strengthens our units, but also our industry -- we won't have to waste our IC on reinforcements longer than necessary with this technology.
Hugo Sperrle ---> Logistical Strike Doctrine | Krupp ---> Light Tank 1939
This is probably again one of my self-explanatory decisions, the research of 1939 Light Tanks as Germany should happen better sooner than later, even if we will later receive due to the End of Czechoslovakia decision a free blueprint for this technology.
I.G. Farben ---> Combat Engineer Brigade 1939 | Rheinmetall ---> Early Static Anti-Air Artillery 1938
With the finalized research on 1939 engineers we're one step closer to start the upgrade of our divisions and brigades. Modern AA will compensate for our relative small air force and make enemy raids on our industry more difficult, even if we have only Germany's initial AA at our disposal.
Mauser Werke ---> 1939 Infantry | Hugo Sperrle ---> First Strike Doctrine
On the 20th of November, 1939 we finish the research of 1939 Infantry which will have the aforementioned repercussions, I will elaborate on this after the next screenshot. Hugo Sperrle will continue with the research of the First Strike Doctrine that will improve night attacks, morale and organisation of our interceptors. There are so many 1939 air doctrine techs, especially a flood of new technologies for our interceptors, that we have to start the research of these technologies now if we wish to remain competitive.
After the 1939 infantry tech is completed I immediatly check my production queue, and indeed: No other units are about to be finished in 1938, so it's time to start upgrading. According to my explanations before I move, respectively, two PRs of light armor and interceptors to the top of my production queue. Unfortunately DH doesn't have AoDs advanced sliders, so it will be necessary to control the production sliders manually for the rest of the interbellum period: Production is set and fixed (right-click on the slider) to exactly 50 IC, because the first four PRs I wish to produce cost exactly 50 IC, while all other PRs in the production queue won't be produced on purpose due to the lack of any additional IC. Reinforcements will be still on zero -- the mobilization event will reinforce our units almost completely -- and consumer goods and supplies are set to 43.14 for the former and 21.48 IC to the latter which is 0.01 IC more than these sliders would need; but to counter any microscopic fluctuations a small buffer is always handy. The other 112.39 IC points are allocated to the upgrade slider. With this slider setting our updates run at roughly 20 percent efficiency -- which sounds lacklustre, but it would be due to DH's long build and upgrade times anyway utopical to hope for the upgrade of every single division. The IC we will spend on upgrades will also increase through the upcoming annexations that are part of Germany's historical event chain and the removal of one interceptor PR in March 1939.
This manual production setup will require constant supervision, especially after the End of Czechoslovakia and the Memel Ultimatum a complete readjustment will be necessary. I really miss AoD's advanced sliders here that would allow the use of the production AI while at the same time sliders can become the subject of limitations set by the player, e.g. only allowing 50 IC for the production slider.
On the 15th of December 1938 the End of Czechoslovakia decision becomes available. I immediatly enact the decision and go for a partition of Czechoslovakia. Creating a puppeted Slovakia is in my opinion not wise in DH, as the Slovaks get -- without German guard divisions -- easily annexed by the Poles as soon as war breaks out. The Hungarians are not much better at resisting the Poles because their land forces are puny and they tend to station them at the wrong border, but due to the additional VP provinces they are at least not immediatly annexed by Poland, and I could always take military control over Hungary. Besides, I'm an outspoken adversary of patchwork rugs and wish to have a free alliance with Hungary. This is somewhat risky, because the chance that the Czechs will resist is fifty percent, but I'm actually not that afraid of a fight as it would eliminate my peacetime IC penalty. At least in AoD the chance was 60 percent that the Czechs would resist, so I think that it's not as risky as it sounds ...
Everything went better than expected; Case Green is not necessary. We annex the rest of Czechia while the Hungarians annex Slovakia. We gain blueprints for the 1939 Improved Light Tank we already started to research, 1939 Motorized Infantry Divisions blueprints which are useless as we don't research or build motorized infantry, one hawk slider move which is also useless as our hawk lobby slider is already maxed out, and yet another useless five percent dissent reduction as I still won't enact partial mobilisation and I don't have any 1939 ministers I could appoint. In case of a puppeted Slovakia we would have received a ten percent dissent reduction which would have changed perhaps our strategy regarding the moment of our partial mobilisation, but this is only hypothetical as I almost always go for the partition. Germany's and Hungary's belligerence also increased by two points.
Our new core provinces in Czechia boost our Base IC to 199 and our Effective IC to 259 on the next day. Considering that the Soviets almost have the German Effective IC as their Base IC it's about time. An early Anschluss would have been indeed extremely advantageous, but if we make good progress with our strategy, the Soviets won't have enough time to utilise their industrial base against us.
On the same day Romania had a sudden change in government, which changed their social liberal government to a paternal autocrat regime; I'm pleased by this development, as they're now in theory available for an alliance, and the alliance with the Romanians should be concluded at the beginning of 1940 at the latest to allow us the proper execution of Barbarossa. I also order my new fellow allies, the Hungarians, to stop sending me any expeditionary forces; I will do this with every country in my alliance as I don't like being spammed with them, even when in Hungary's case due to their puny army (six infantry divisions) it doesn't seem to be probable that I will become the victim of expeditionary forces.
Last edited by K W; 08-05-2011 at 05:22.
If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. – George Orwell
Couldn't you simply "lock" the Production slider at 50 IC, Reinforcements slider at 0 IC and use the Production AI by prioritising the Upgrades?
If HUN AI is so stupid that it doesn't know that it has to put troops on the Polish-Hungarian border, then I think that you should use military control and manually place them there.
Unfortunately, putting production on AI control overrules all your adjustments, even locked ones. If DH developers would make so that the locked sliders leave where they are and AI only tries to do with the remaining IC the best it can, it would be a huge boost to DH.
Also, why do you use engineers with all your divisions? I understand that they boost speed by 1, but thats a big chunk of IC needed to equip all your division with them, and after all, you need the speed and defense bonuses only to the spearheading units, that need to move fast and survive counterattacks. Wouldn't making artillery for those slower advancing ground troops that do most of the dirty fighting a better investment?
What is your opinion on other brigades, like AC, medium tanks and cavalry brigades? As for cavalry division, those with engineered brigade move at the speed of 7 - haven't you considered them as an infantry component of your armor corps?
Do you plan to work on other branches of infantry, namely mountaineer and paratroopers, before Fall Barbarossa? These would be of great help in Russia.
I also like to partition Czechoslovakia with Hungary, cause you will mostly get a stronger ally (Which leads to more cannon fodder you can use...probably.) If you have no minister change or random events ( I don't know if DH Full has them...) the dissent reduction is quite useless...good luck with the Frenchies...
- Artillery costs 0.6 IC more than engineers.
- Engineers have a far lower supply consumption than artillery.
- I don't plan to brigade all of my divisions with engineers, only my new produced infantry will be fully brigaded with engineers. As soon as self-propelled artillery becomes available, I will cancel the two PRs of engineers that, until now, didn't receive enough IC for production anyway, and replace them with two or even three PRs of self-propelled artillery.
- The boost to defensiveness is useful for all units, not only my spearheads.
- I probably won't have a fourth or even third armor corps when I will declare war upon the Soviet Union. It is therefore necessary that I can utilise, in principle, any of my corps as a spearhead. Having dozens of mediocre infantry "spearheads" is better far more preferable than to be limited to two or three armor spearheads. A speed bonus of just one point will make me fast enough to outrun the Soviets in most cases.
- The prospect of "dirty fighting" and "slower advancing ground troops" is something I would like to circumvent anyway. In general my playing style is already more focused on maneuver warfare than on firepower, but with my current strategy it becomes even more imperative to avoid any costly battles. If I can't advance easily, than it's better to not advance at all. If I can't move fast, than it's better to not move at all.
If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. – George Orwell
So whats the date when you want to start ww2 also if your quick i think ww2 could be avoided but you would still get danzig you could be to late though
Yeah, when are you going to start World War II? I would say if it's possible, to wait an extra month - you're not in a hurry to subjugate the Poles.
Part XXXII: January – April 1939
On the 1st of January 1939 I appoint Alfred Jodl as Chief of Staff. Ludwig Beck, his predecessor, provided our land units with a ten percent speed increase , while Jodl will make the replenishment speed of our unit organisation twenty percent faster. During war the bonus to the organisation regain will be more useful than the movement bonus; our army already has superior speed due to our engineer brigades. Especially the fact that Germany's Mobility Focus doctrine does not provide outstanding morale boosts like, for example, the Soviet Manpower Focus doctrine makes Jodl very attractive. I could have also appointed Fritz Bayerlein a long time ago, as he provides the same bonus, but as Jodl adds some flavour to the game and is only useful in war, it's better to appoint him in 1939.
Karl Dönitz would also be a viable candidate for Chief of the Navy, replacing Erich Raeder. However, the fact that the number of our submarines is -- unfortunately -- negligible and the one percent dissent hit from appointing a new minister convinced me to keep Raeder for the time being.
The Claiming Klaipeda decision became already available on New Year's Eve (in terms of the DH engine this means: 30th of December ). However, when the ultimatum to cede Memel is accepted, it reduces our dissent by one percent -- which translates into a free minister change. I therefore delayed the ultimatum by one day until I could appoint Jodl. After the minister change was concluded, I executed the decision, and Lithuania agreed to cede Memel -- the province provides us with two additional IC, our Effective IC will rise during the next day to 261 points.
Also, on New Year's Day, the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact decision becomes available. Our relations with the Soviet Union are only at + 13 points, therefore I have to maximise my diplomatic efforts to reach the required + 50 points for the decision.
Okay, I've totally forgotten about this, although I put it into my priority list. Hjalmar Schacht is the only Armaments Minister that can provide us in 1939 with a five percent IC bonus. Due to our refusal to construct IC it is out of question that we replace him with Walter Funk. Keeping him costs us 500 bucks, but we have only 111.5 in our bank account, so choosing the option "We need him" will throw us into default that will strain our research. Fortunately I can conclude some weeks later negotiations with the Soviet Union buying 593 currency units in exchange for 1742 tons of supplies.
As this is probably the final entirely domestic update I will give you an overview about the recent developments in some other fields: A good chunk of our engineers, tanks and our air force has been upgraded. The infantry will take longer and unfortunately my army will be far from being top-modern when the war breaks out, but I think that it will be sufficient enough to beat the French in an acceptable timeframe. Two PRs of interceptors are finished and according to my previous explanations one PR is moved back to its original position in the production queue. The United Kingdom guaranteed the Polish Indepedence in January 1939, which makes the Polish entry to the war as soon as I declare war on France more probable -- although Poland is not a member of the Allies, so perhaps I won't have to waste too much guard divisions in the east to prevent any Polish incursions into my territory. We were also perfidiously assaulted by American and French intelligence; the United States managed to manipulate the global opinion against us, increasing our belligerence by three points -- fortunately we won't have to care about this in some weeks -- and France again succeeded with a smear campaign, increasing our dissent by two percent. I might tragically fail with my strategy and with this game, but I've now irreversibly decided that the French will, in any case, perish together with me, whatever the cost may be.
The technology, again:
Opel ---> Rear Area Vehicle Repair Shop | Erich von Manstein ---> Elastic Defense Doctrine
The increased repair modifier provided by the Rear Area Vehicle Repair Shop will make small reinforcements -- that are necessary in oder to fully reinforce our units after the mobilisation reinforcement events fire -- faster. I decided to task Erich von Manstein with the research of the 1940 Elastic Defense Doctrine already in Spring 1939 because we will need it against the Soviet Union should we succeed with our plans and start Barbarossa in 1940, as this doctrine provides numerous bonuses for our land units like a five percent organisation increase, better HQ efficiency and increased chances for advantageous battle events.
Rheinmetall ---> Early Static Anti-Air Artillery | Rheinmetall ---> Early Field Artillery
I only research artillery now because I have to, in order to get self-propelled artillery in 1940. Otherwise I would not waste this techslot for our non-artillery army.
Krupp ---> Improved Light Tank | Krupp ---> Basic Medium Tank
Should be self-explanatory when playing Germany. If everything works right, all our light tanks will be upgraded to medium tanks, as well as the light armor in our production queue.
Hugo Sperrle ---> First Strike Doctrine | Hugo Sperrle ---> Night Strikes Doctrine
I'm not only afraid of falling behind in Air Doctrine technologies -- even after starting research on Night Strikes I still have four 1939 air doctrine technologies to research -- but wish to compensate the relatively small size of the Luftwaffe with quality. The Night Strikes doctrine will apart from the better combat performance at night provide a five percent organisation and morale boost to our CAS.
On April Fools' Day, after my relations with the Soviet Union surpass + 50 points through my repeated diplomatic influence actions and trade agreements, I propose the historical Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact to the Soviet Union. They accept, giving us our final three core provinces in Poland and triggering the Danzig Nazi Coup event that would allow us to start World War II historically. However, as we wish to attack France first, from now on everything will proceed very ahistorical. This was the last important event in Germany's historical event chain, and now we can do as we please.
In principle this concludes the domestic peace period; it is April 1939 so I will spent the majority of the remaining peace period to move my divisions around. In the following updates, I will present you detailed information about the actual war plans.
Last edited by K W; 05-08-2011 at 03:17.
Concerning the exact date, I can only repeat my previous remarks:
Well, this would be indeed a possible strategy. However, I think that the necessity to research an additional branch of the tech tree and the production of yet another type of units that is even somewhat weaker than infantry, is, at least from my point of view, not profitable enough. I don't say that this can't work or that it is a bad strategy, but I think that my scarce resources are too precious to build cavalry, especially if this would come at the expense of infantry production. Besides, for this game it's either way too late to try this strategy out.
It will be interesting to watch the progress of your campaign. However, if for any reason Poland attacks you or joins the Allies while you are deep in France, it may easily turn into another WWI.
Really interesting AAR; I'm perhaps considering acquiring DH at some point, so I will follow closely.
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To me this is the best Darkest Hour AAR that has came out so far, so keep up the good work. Are you going to leave East Prussia undefended? What about the Polish border as a whole? I wouldn't be surprised when they declare war whilst you are Blitzing your way through France.
First I wish to apologize for the lack of updates in this week. As my vacation is over, I'm now preoccupied more with real life. Add to this that the PC due to my cumbersome graphics card became somewhat unattractive I hadn't the nerve to use my spare time for updates. But all your kind comments motivate me to continue with it this weekend.
"Expand your political power for free!"
Why I never get such e-mails.
Waiting eagerly the next update.
Same here.Waiting eagerly the next update.