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stnylan

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A very good illustration of the Allied snowball affect.
 

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Lordban--I suspect you may be correct. It's strange, though, because I would expect it to be locked out, rather then have another tech showing with weird requirements.
I think it may be bugged. All the other techs are either one shots or unlimited in level (I modded in large leadership and research efficiency bonuses just to see what would happen; n.b. theory values cap at 99.0 :p).

I did notice that you can keep researching ASW if you keep it in the queue. Or, at least, you could when I tried it.

Nice AAR btw. It's really highlighting some of HOI's greatest strengths.
 

Lordban

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On second thought, I think it may be bugged too and should be reported: the same tech for Capital ships allows you to research up to level 3 with level 1 Radar but blocks you there, and then past level 3 with level 3 Radar :)

Intuitions will only take you so far :p
 

ComTrav

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Anyway, I've reported it. I'm a little nervous about not being able to get more ASW research--if it gets to be 43 and I'm still worried about submarines, I may be in trouble. Incidentally, for someone looking for a U-Boot strat, the key seems to be to keep your ship moving; it was soooo frustrating to see the sub on the strategic map but not have my ships engage. It's also frustrating that planes now longer have ASW. Also, I have no more "ASW" mission. (I can give my Destroyer groups Intercept/Patrol orders, but how does that convey "sink subs, but if you run into Battlecruiser, run away?")

Anyway, if anyone is wondering if Radar is worth it, I'm going to give a definitive yes. I've sort of come to think of the air combat bonus as a nice ancillary benefit--the real reason to get it is the SIGINT.

Here's an SS to give you an idea:
SIGINTFTW.jpg


I KNOW that they have a fleet in port at Naples, and if I know it's there, I can kill it.

Here's intel mapmode of Northern France:
IntelMapmodeFrance.jpg


My Malta radar station is level 4, my GB ones are level 5 mostly. You can see how I can see theatre level hqs from very far away, but even even on the far Low Countries border, I can pick out individual brigades.

This also works for planes in bases, and ships in port. (Though it doesn't seem to work very well for ships at sea.)

Radar Practical accumulates very quickly, and is cheap to get off the ground, unlike some investments. The biggest problem is the associated Research techs; obviously, as UK I started with a lot of the necessary stuff already. I really wish you could build stuff in allied territory; Norway/Sweden are both leaning Allies, and it would be so nice to be able to put a listening post on the Baltic.

So I decided to try something a little silly. That's a lot of unguarded ports, and a lot completely undefended airfields. Airfields they're bombing me from.

Dieppelol.jpg

I realize doing this with Marines would be more thematic, but I haven't built any, and I think it says a great deal that I feel the need to bring an artillery brigade. Using a Canadian expeditionary force would be the MOST thematic, however.

This doesn't work QUITE AS WELL as I hope in terms of disrupting their air units. I was hoping it would be like earlier HoIs where catching air units on the ground destroys them; instead they get a chance to rebase. (I know this because I was able to track this squad to a base in southern France after seizing the northern French bases. Also, the CAS squadron I sent to Yugoslavia had its base overrun and I had the chance to run them to North Africa.) However, I do deal damage to it for grabbing it, and I do temporarily deny them the use of it. It's also interesting to see the AI respond; it pulled a bunch of divs off the Benelux border to go take it back. This is good to know; with one div and one transport I can (momentarily) force him to disperse large numbers of forces. With two divs and two transports I could grab the whole occupied French coast (except at the Benelux border, where they have lots of troops.) I'm grabbing the Channel Islands back, just for national pride reasons, when this happens:

BismarckFriedrich.jpg


I admit I'm a little nervous. This fleet I have is mostly cruisers/light cruisers. I look at the tooltip and see that they're out of supply; I suspect I caught them in the middle of rebasing. (Remember, rebasing your ships to a distant port puts them out of supply!) Still, I'm a little worried.

One round of combat:
BismarckFriedrichGOINGDOWN.jpg


I'm amazed at how much my ships have increased in lethality. Later on, a squadron of three obsolete destroyers badly mauls the Tirpitz. (Though they lose half their strength, I was pretty proud of them.) I remember at the start of the war I would win fleet battles but kill only a few ships, and now I'm winning decisively. (It's either my ship radar techs, crew experience, or doctrine. If I had to guess, I'd go with doctrine; the "Target Chance" and "Target Choice" techs in Fleet in Being SOUND like they should increase the effectiveness of naval gunfire considerably.)

While snatching the Northern French ports/Airbases

The Axis grab the French ports basically right back after I leave. I wonder if the AI is "smart" enough to be fooled by this kind of feint? The way of war is the way of deception. (It depends a lot on whether or not the AI gets free global vision.) Against a human player, I could do something similar but I'd need to be much cagier; my "large force", for example, would be my true feint and I'd pull it out and land a hidden third force somewhere else. (I doubt the AI is THAT "smart", but interesting possibilities are opening up...incidentally, this sort of thing means I HAVE to get paratroopers, though I don't THINK I can airdrop on an airbase, rebase my planes there, and immediately fly away--all units have a 30-day built-in supply reserve, but I don't think that applies to fuel...have to check on that, because I will need to build the SAS if I can!)

Anyway, I manage to sink Bismarck, and I play you-have-no-org-and-automatically-retreat-and-i-wish-i-could-actually-get-a-round-of-combat-in-the-English-channel-this-fine-August-day with Friedrich. My radar lets me find Tirpitz and I pound it with Tacs; it's so weak that a handful of cruisers/destroyers are enough to keep it bottled up in port.

I'm frustrated with air-to-air combat because it always feels indecisive. I try to take the fight to the enemy with my bombers and "Crater Runway" missions. Note that 3 Strat bombers, essentially completely unupgraded, took about 3-4 missions to completely level an airbase; and took much less damage from the provincial AA the TACs I tried to do it with. Neither of them hurt the planes on the ground much, though, I'm going to try it with Dive-Bombers. However, with the right orders, I can probably use my legacy strat bombers to keep all air bases in Northern France at 0 permanently. I should note that I'm not sure if Strats are the best option to do this, I'm going to experiment a bit. However, they have long range, they're very tough, and they seem to do a lot of facility damage--I might be able to justify building a few Lancasters after all. They do cost three times more then my battleships, though, and take almost as long, but the Practical +5.1 per, so, as always, the initial outlay is the tough part.

Meanwhile, in East Africa, the British Army engages in its largest land battle of the war!
MoreDangerousThenYouRealize.jpg


Believe it or not, when this popped, I thought I might lose. I think I've had maybe one battle with more then one div attacking.

East Africa was basically a way to get Land experience; I have another corps of infantry or so coming off the lines in the summer. My army's a bit of a mess atm and I need to reorganize it for my invasion of Italy (I finally need to create an ARMY GROUP!)
-OR I can hold off until fall or so to invade Italy, and I'll have more of everything I want to do. Part of me says, "Don't be hasty", part of me says "Fighting in the mountains in Winter will be rough, even for Ghurkas". (Although, even though I was very enthused about building Mountain troops, I forgot to actually research Mountain Warfare Equipment, and it won't be ready until September.)

By the end of May I'll have 4 armoured divisions, 5 mountain divisions, and 30-35 infantry divisions. I can probably add another two infantry corps or so if I wait until August/September, but of course, MUSSOLINI is building troops too (though according to the Malta post, he doesn't appear to be putting them in Italy.) And of course transport capacity, as it was historically, is the major constraint on any amphibious operation. Do you guys have any thoughts on this?

And, more importantly, do you have a NAME for my new Army Group? :D
 
Last edited:

Lordban

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No ideas about names, I'm afraid :p


You're doing pretty good. And maybe Bismarck got chased out of that port you captured, explaining why it had to rebase.


If you want to restore the infinite loop for that ASW tech, go to your technologies\Naval Technologies.txt file. See below the tech you want to look for; the line with a comment ("#") is the one you want to edit.

Code:
smallwarship_asw = {
	light_cruiser = {
		sub_detection = 1.00
		sub_attack = 1.00
	}
	destroyer = {
		sub_detection = 1.00
		sub_attack = 1.00
	}

	allow = {
		OR = {
			lightcruiser_technology = 1
			destroyer_technology = 1
		}
		OR = {
			AND = {
				NOT = { smallwarship_asw = 3 }
				radar = 1
			}
			AND = {
				smallwarship_asw = 3  #NOT = { smallwarship_asw = 3 }
				radar = 3
			}
		}
	}

	research_bonus_from = {
		cruiser_practical = 0.25
		destroyer_practical = 0.25
		electornicegineering_theory  = 0.50
	}

	on_completion = electornicegineering_theory

	difficulty = 2
	start_year = 1918
	first_offset = 1938
	additional_offset = 2
	folder = smallship_folder
}
 

stnylan

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The Navy continues to impress :) And a raid on teh coast - excellent!
 

ComTrav

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I'm glad you like the coastal raids--I actually have done enough of them that I felt COMPELLED to buy a license from the US for Marines. That way I can actually raid the occasional defended province. (As well as not have to grab some random div from Territorial Army whenever I want to do it.)

I'm curious--purely for academic reasons, of course, as you can see in my situation that such a thing is some ways off (--what the conditions are for the liberation of France? I know there's not a ton of events in the game atm, but I figure if Vichy France is in, the "liberation" has to be in.
 

Earl Uhtred

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You can licence infantry types? I don't know if that's realistic.

Enjoying the AAR, mind. March on.
 

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Your navy's certainly doing well, and your radar is enviable!
 

Lordban

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I'm curious--purely for academic reasons, of course, as you can see in my situation that such a thing is some ways off (--what the conditions are for the liberation of France? I know there's not a ton of events in the game atm, but I figure if Vichy France is in, the "liberation" has to be in.

I failed to find an answer - no annexation of Vichy for France, in any event.

Odds are you'll have to declare war on Vichy at some point, and if you don't want to grab their lands, you'll have to attack from French-supplied territory (which in turns raises a lot of supply problems!)
 

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great reading, thank you!

Army Group TEA TIME doesn't sound sufficiently intimidating, i suppose? especially if you have to translate it into German to make them tremble...
 

unmerged(137040)

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Really insightful AAR mate, read the start of it before i began my own game and was pleased to learn about the lowering of neutrality as i imagined that would be a bit of a bugger early on if you had not used your intel to lower it.

I've gone with Battleships in my own game and am in 1939 (started in 36) and about to have several vangards roll off the line, like in this game also, Japan has been rather pitful however and it seems somewhat of a waste seeing as the existing navy is more than capable of holding down Germany andItaly in it's current state.

I've only just started fighting, and had made the decision earlier on not to reinforce France, something that i am now going to regret i suspect, although it's not to late to get my troops into Sothern France to try hold back the Italian hordes.
 

CowboyRonin

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Here's a neat trick the AI taught me in my game (I'm playing USA)-a country can join a faction at war regardless of their neutrality value. In my case, I had been running with AI-controlled intelligence (last time I do that...), and so my neutrality was still at 100%. However, I had been influenced a lot by allied countries, so I was pretty much up in the Allied corner. Britain invited me to the allies in April 1940; I thought "what's the catch?" None-no dissent, no loss of NU, but also no war. That's right: I was allied with the UK, who was at war with the Axis, but I wasn't. However, when Germany declared war on Denmark (who was also in the Allies), bingo, I'm at war (universal guarantees and all that):D. So, if the US is nice and snug at the Allied side of the triangle, it may be worth a diplomat or two to try and get them in.
 

ComTrav

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Lord Uhtred--I dunno, licensing infantry types strikes me as realistic enough if you think of them as including the specialized equipment (amphtracs or what-have-you) as well as instructors/advisers to provide specialized training. I didn't check, and I haven licensed a whole lot, but don't these units take manpower? I'm not buying the brigades, I'm buying the expertise to form them.

Myth--My radar is so useful for tracking down and destroying enemy fleets and denying their air force bases. Hopefully my air force will eventually be strong enough attack ground forces at range, too, though the short "legs" of CAS make them unsuited for that. (I guess I COULD build tacs, but if I start down the road of another aircraft type, it'll be heavy aircraft...though my large-scale strategic air power experiment will need to wait for BombAAR Command.)

Lordban--So if there's no event for France's liberation, I need to do it as per a "regular" country? (Which I'm not positive how to do tbh, but I imagine it involves holding VPs, though I dunno how many.)

Soultaire--Army Group Tea Time is perfect! Intimidating names are for German/Soviet games...British games should have some dry humor.

Warspite--Lowering neutrality helps a lot, especially since it kicks in your mobilization laws faster. I'm wondering if you're playing with the patched version with the consumer goods hotfix (I wasn't at that point), because I was sorta hoping it would make Japan viable. (And make it actually possible to maintain more then 1-2 practicals during the run-up to war...) Although the naval investment feels like a waste, once your first BBs are built your practical will be high enough you can keep a handful of production for a low continuing cost. (For me right now I'm at 16-ish capital ship practical, so for a "Battleship VI" it's 6.5 IC and 572 days.)

CowboyRonin-Diplomacy update is coming up. I have some new friends :D. Though some countries continue to refuse to join. I'm wondering if you were able to join even though your neutrality was high because some country had very high Threat? Now that Germany has amassed over 200-ish threat, I can invite lots of countries to my faction. It' s difference between "impossible" and "very likely." I actually barely need to use diplomatic influence right now, because lots of "align towards allies" events have fired, and my small allies are using their influence. (Who knew that the Polish government-in-exile had such good connections in Washington?)
 

ComTrav

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Three-part update, with each part on a theater. In war, all things are always on the move simultaneously, but right now my game is at July 1940 (so if I want an SS I didn't think to take, I'll take it from my current game, which is from that date) The Mediterranean stuff was happening while everything else was going on, and Scandinavia happened before the crazy completely ahistorical but completely fun to play stuff.
 

ComTrav

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Part 1 of 3: MUSSOLINI's Mediterranean
MUSSOLINI has, since the start of the war, proven himself to be a military genius. While the Germans continue to spout nonsense like "panzers" and "mechanized warfare", MUSSOLINI derided that kind of thinking as "SOOOO third-generation warfare" and has engaged in a prolonged guerilla campaign in East Africa to humiliate and frustrate the British Army.
(That's my way of saying it's hard to destroy units in this game in low-infrastructure provinces. Even if they've been out-of-supply for a year. Units, I guess, don't starve in Hoi3...)

My invasion in Italy is pre-empted by events and opportunities in other theaters. Even a Grand Battle Plan must be flexible, and reactive to events.

I withdraw my infantry support, though I leave the Colonial Forces that started in the area there. My tanks are playing whack-a-mole, but I get tired of that nonsense and send them back to port. I try strategic redeployment to move First Tank Corps HQ to Alexandria, but it's a mess. In fact my army organization is a little messed up; moving troops by ship sometimes leaves the HQ brigade behind, and it's really hard to make sure I have all of a corps's boarded. (It's a lot of clicking, especially since if I drag-click, embarked units still appear in the province.) Although I've really enjoyed the game a lot, moving multiple units onto a ship is becoming a pet-peeve of mine, and I'm hoping that they revisit this element of the UI in a forthcoming patch. (Even a simple HQ order, "ie, move your butt and all units under you here, get on this ships.")

I take the unprecedented (for me) move of letting Ethiopia have a few of the old colonial forces as expeditionary forces, because Ethiopia seems to be doing a determined job of chasing them around. I make sure to leave on div (1 militia/1 inf brigade) at their only VP, so they don't get annexed again.

ScrewEastAfrica.jpg

You know, if you really, really want all those provinces with no IC, resources, or even infrastructure, you can have them.

I do make sure to stick a div at Alexandria in case they make it that far north. I create a "North Africa Defense" command with divs there and Tobruk. Farther West is where 8th Army and most of BEF are, waiting for enough planes to cover an invasion of Italy. My invasion of Italy is slowed down mainly because of a lack of planes; I have air superiority around most of Britain, but I don't have any to spare just yet.

(There is, however, a German STRAT that occasionally cruises right by my three 3-squadron interceptor wings in southern England to bomb my industrial area in the middle. I started a flak battery there, because I love artillery practical, and I have to stick at least one interceptor in northern England.) I do, however, send two longer-range Multi-Role fighters to Malta for air-cover.

My main fleet has 4 CAGs, so it's able to operate fine in the Med, but Port Strike is getting harder because MUSSOLINI actually has enough planes to intercept me now. He also has begun attacking convoys in the western Med. I'm sending some smaller, cruiser/destroyer squadrons to hunt around. Unlike the main Med fleet, they're more vulnerable to air attacks. Although I haven't lost any ships to them, they do make me send them back for repairs earlier then I might like.

The Greeks' stubborn resistance--and even more stubborn refusal to accept Allied aid--comes to an end. MUSSOLINI allows his German ally Mr. Hiller access to the Med:
EasternMed.jpg


Crete appeared to be a freebie, which puts their NAVs in range of my previously 'safe' port of Alexandria. In the photo you can see NAVs apparently attacking a submarine, something I wasn't sure could happen. In Yugoslavia, Italy has the coast, Germany has the interior.

I have naval supremacy in the Med, and as soon as I send down more fighters, the air situation will improve. I'll have to seize Crete and Rhodes to help the situation in the East, and in the West, I think a Sardinia operation might not be a bad idea. An invasion of Italy itself might put a stop to all this nonsense, but it remains to be seen if I have the resources for that after my Crazy Ahistorical Fun Theatre (CAFT)--it's too bad I can't really create theaters, because I would love to actually create CAFT now.



So thoroughly has the British Army's reputation been sapped in the area of the world, that the Greeks refuse to join the Allies despite being crushed by Italian bayonets. No government in exile for the Greeks. (Pity, too, the Polish government-in-exile are really cool people and I think the Greeks would've liked them a lot.)
 

Lordban

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That last line... :rofl:

Great update which made me smile a lot and even laugh a bit :D


As to liberating countries effectively... Well, I don't do liberations, I do annexions :p I have yet to read of a successful liberation, or to perform one myself - though I'm probably going to run a USA game very soon and do just that (a weird USA game it will be too... :p )
 

unmerged(10971)

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Balbo? I wasn't aware this game had characters from Il Pendolo di Foucault. :p

Silly Greeks. Have to make things difficult, do they?

And even if you made the Crazy Ahistorical Fun Theatre, they'd probably ask for a bunch of ridiculous useless forces anyway, just like everyone else. :D
 

ComTrav

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Part 2-The Royal Navy saves the day (again) in Scandinavia

If you'd read the first part of the AAR really closely, you'll note I didn't intervene in France because in Hoi2 I always sent a small force with mountaineers to Norway, which is very easy to defend and a valuable base in the Future. In Hoi2 France is always a lost cause, and it's worth it to send air support but but if you send an army you just risk it getting blown up.

Norway, on the other hand, is a valuable base for future operations. (Unless you really, really want to let it fall so you can have your Operation Jupiter in the future.)

Also, whatever messages that have the Axis declaring war on people and people joining my faction needs to be turned on to "pop-up and pause" because my first hint that Scandinavia is now a front is that they ask to be able to buy and credit. I grant it, because it seems to be one of the few ways I can help my allies. Besides, I'm sitting on massive stockpiles of resources--it's almost like I have this massive, resource-rich overseas Empire that Italy and Germany can't even touch!

Mental note: At SOME point, move those India divs to the defensive line you wanted, because the India theater AI shows no intention of doing it four years later. I'm not pulling my ground forces out from India--it's too valuable in case something crazy happens like Nationalist China joining the Axis.

You know, I just looked, and Japan is making a small comeback:
GoJapan.jpg


How funny is it that I'm really pulling for them at this point?

Anyway, Scandinavia. I decide I'm sick of ordering troops into transports so I create a corps-level Scandinavia Command and I assign it some freshly-built, unassigned troops, a transport flotilla, and the destroyers I got from the Destroyers-for-Bases event. (Because it's not like I'm going to assign them any ships I actually BUILT MYSELF.)

The Royal Navy does what it does best and sinks some German transports. They're unescorted I probably have sunk at least one more attempted invasion without barely noticing; every time I look at my "ships sunk" page it's mostly German transports. (I do, however, love that a CL got the kill credit for Bismarck.) Doenitz is always commanding these, and I haven't seen any U-boats...it's almost like he lost a bet before the war. "If I win, we built a massive U-boat fleet, is I lose, I will command unescorted transports the entire war filled with those dunderheads from the army who insist on launching invasions without sea control!"

It takes me a minute to realize that, unlike Hoi2, Sweden is also in the fight. On the one hand this is a good thing because it doubles ground troops in the Baltic, and more importantly they actually have a decent-sized navy with two battlecruisers. (Strictly speaking, Australia has more ships, but they're almost all transports.)

NORWAY.jpg


However, Sweden might be a liability because it opens up an invasion route into Norway that doesn't involve unescorted transports. The Axis are at war with Denmark, which means they can go through the straits at Malmo. I can put a fleet to block this, but that fleet would be stuck in the Baltic, and would have to sit there forever. A brief incursion of me trying to use my CAS to slow down the Germans proves the Luftwaffe is quite alive and well and I need the planes in the Med a lot more.

Scandinavia Command originally has a few objectives (the Sweden/Norway VPs) but I change it to just Malmo. It doesn't do anything for a bit. The Swedes have a big enough army to hold it themselves once they get going--it's an eminently defensible point, and I saw a screenshot from a frustrated German player attacking it with over 70 divs. The Swedes aren't fully mobilized yet, so I rush a div there. When my CAS shows that the German forces are quite powerful, I detach a second div from the ai and send it there. (I reattach both of them to the AI and make sure they don't move. I also realize the "bombing screen" shows BRIGADES rather then DIVS, so I'm rather re-assured.)

Denmark falls, becomes a puppet, and has a complete Hamlet moment of indecision where, as a puppet of Germany, it goes to war with Germany.

Here's a diplomacy screen shot:
Diplomacy-Hamlet.jpg


I'm not sure if I should take the "Destroy the French Fleet" decision--I sorta am tempted, just to see what it'll do. But if I need to fight Vichy eventually, I'd rather get the Naval Combat Experience for sinking them. (Plus, I have a bunch of new BBs coming off the line this year! Sweet, sweet Capital Ship Practical!) And I'm sitting on 100 National Unity, so no problems.

You can see that the "rush to the allied camp" continues; as the Greek case shows, though, just alignment doesn't mean they'll accept an offer. I used to think that complaints about this sort of thing were overrated. (Atm, I'm going to take it as a COMPLETELY FAIR trade for my CG-bugged run-up-to-war and a France that surrendered within a week of Poland.) At one point I DO check and I have a "Very Likely" option for the United States to join, but I decide it's too early for me to wuss out and hit that particular "I win" button. I do pick up Venezuela to deny the Axis any oil trades; I realize now I could have easily done this with convoy raiding orders. I'm thinking about Finland, as it would the situation in the Baltic, if for no other reason then Norway has 20+ brigades on their border, but I'm not sure how it impacts any Winter War events. (The "Winter War" happened in Summer of '39). Besides, I'd like to see the Finns get justice on the soviets. I think the thing to do is see if they join the Axis, beat the Soviets to crushing them, and then puppet them.