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Across the Rhine: HOI2 Allied Demo AAR


Hello all, some people said they were having trouble winning as the allies in the HOI2 demo, and as I haven’t got the game yet, I decided to write up a quick AAR detailing how I managed to win a strategic victory as the Allies. Obviously it won’t be the same as the real Battle of the Bulge, as a game can never fully recreate history.

Here you go!

Across the Rhine: Part 1

A piece of spaghetti or a military unit can only be led from the front end.
General George Patton

00:00 December 16th

Operation Wacht Am Rhein begins. Hitler orders his best units to commence a general offensive against allied forces in the west. The German objective: Antwerp.

Faced with reports of German attacks all along the front, Field Marshall Dwight Eisenhower reacts quickly. Allied troops are in a poor defensive position, not expecting an offensive in the poor weather conditions. Enormous rearrangements of forces and commanders are needed to halt the German onslaught. Many of the Allies’ best commanders are stationed behind the front line and are thus in a poor position to aid in defence.

Eisenhower immediately reacts to reorganise the allied armies. Armies and army corps are split into infantry and mobile units, with the mobile units acting as reserves to quickly react to German attacks. A massive command reorganisation occurs. Omar Bradley is moved to Eindhoven to take command of all Allied forces there, primarily XII Corps. Montgomery leaves his headquarters in Brussels and takes command of the Canadian 1st army in Ghent, while Eisenhower leaves SHAEF in Paris, and leads all reinforcements to Lille, in order to assault the remaining German presence in Dunkirk.

Numerous mobile reserves are created. The armoured units of Gen Patton’s 3rd army are ordered to Luxembourg, while Gen Gerow leads the remaining infantry. Lt General Ritchie and the newly promoted Lt Gen Walker are given commands of critical armoured reserves in Bastogne and Strassbourg, respectively, while Lt Gen Horrocks is ordered to take the tanks of Britain’s XXX corps to Antwerp. Haislip is given command of the 7th army in Strasbourg, leaving General Patch to take command of the XVIII Airborne corp. Numerous headquarters lose their artillery brigades, which are scheduled to be added to airborne units when available.

In view of the precarious situation, lack of strength and unsuitability of command, Lt General Corbett is relieved of command of two infantry divisions in Aachen, and his replacement, General Devers is ordered to evacuate all troops to defend Antwerp. The Free French Armies may make excellent reserves, but are too far south to affect the battle. Leaving two divisions under Bethouart in Mulhouse, Tassigny and Monsabert lead their troops north.



Eisenhower's midnight command reorganisation

Despite Bad weather grounding aircraft for most of the time, Allied Bombers are rebased under newly promoted Air General Embry to Ghent to commence bombing operations on the German troops under Kluge bottled up in Dunkirk. Remaining aircraft are ordered to conduct air superiority operations in skies over Wallonia, Flanders and the Netherlands.

01:00 December 16th

Hitlet launches his offensive, with simultaneous attacks on Aachen and Eindhoven. Corbett successfully evacuates his armoured units from Aachen to Eindhoven, while Devers, facing overwhelming numbers is also forced to retreat from Aachen to Eindhoven.

14:00 December 16th

Bradley is outnumbered almost 4 to 1 in Eindhoven, and requires massive reinforcements to hold on. Dempsey’s 2nd British army and Horrock’s XXX corps are ordered north to support Bradley’s defence.



Bradley struggles to defend Eindhoven

17:00 December 16th

Despite poor weather and less than 5 minutes of sunshine per day on average, numerous Luftwaffe squadrons take to the skies and do battle with allied aircraft. The Battle of Eindhoven continues, with a desperate defence by Bradley’s XII corps.


Nightfalls as the USAAF and RAF battle the Luftwaffe


00:00 December 17th

With reinforcements from retreating troops from Aachen, XXX corps and the 2nd British army arriving in Eindhoven, Bradley is able to successfully counterattack against General Obstfelder. This could be the turning point in the battle for Eindhoven.


Bradley counterattacks


2:00 December 17th

Armoured units of Patton’s 3rd army arrive in Luxembourg, and reinforces with two armoured divisions present. 3rd Army now comprises 4 armoured divisions and headquarters, 3rd army is a powerful mobile force.

8:00 December 17th

Suffering heavy losses, Obstfelder reluctantly halts his attack on Eindhoven. Bradley’s harried forces are permitted a break to reorganise.

15:00 December 17th

Now wielding a Field Marshall’s baton, Hausser, Hitler’s finest general in west begins a powerful series of attacks on Haislip’s 7th army in Strasbourg. Attacking from Freiberg, Stuttgart and Saarbrucken, Hausser outnumbers Haislip 2 to 1, and is a much more skilful commander. Tassingny’s 1st French Army and Patton’s 3rd army are immediately ordered to help defend Strassbourg.


Battle for Strasbourg


13:00 December 18th

3rd Army arrives in Strasbourg, totally routing Hausser’s forces.


3rd Army triumphs

13:00 December 19th

9 German divisions, including elite German paratroopers under Bittrich occupy Aachen.


The Germans Advance!

Antwerp and Eindhoven are now in serious danger, so Hodge’s 1st Army is ordered to Antwerp to provide support. French II Corps under Monsabert are ordered northward to take the place of 1st army.


9:00 December 20th

With the arrival of Allied reinforcements under Eisenhower, the time is judged right to attack the German forces bottled up in Dunkirk, who have been under constant air bombardment and lacking supplies for several months. Eisenhower’s reinforcements, Task force Dunkirk and 1st Canadian army under Fort Buster Montgomery attack OberKommand West under Kluge. German forces have tied down large allied forces which are badly needed further north.


Assault on Dunkirk


7:00 December 21st

With the 1st US army deployed to defend Antwerp, Liege is left seriously under strength, with only 4 divisions of the VII Corps under Truscott present. German reconnaissance teams determine the gap in the lines, and attack Truscott’s forces with 8 infantry and 4 armoured divisions. With reserves hours away, Truscott is outnumbered, outgunned and outgeneralled. The fall of Liege would lead to a gaping hole in allied lines. The mobile reserve of 3 armoured divisions under Lt Gen Ritchie in Bastogne are immediately ordered Northwards.


15:00 December 21st

With reinforcements yet to arrive and with Truscott suffering heavy casualties Hausser demands the surrender of the VII Corps. Truscott replies “Nuts”.

14:00 December 22nd


Dunkirk captured

Cut off from supplies and outnumbers, Kluge and his troops surrender in Dunkirk to Eisenhower. This frees large forces for other combat operations. The grim fight in Liege continues, with Truscott attempting to use terrain to his advantage, as reinforcements under Ritchie arrive.

15:00 December 22nd


Can Truscott hold out?

Hausser sends the elite Panzer Lehr and 2nd Panzer units into the fray, but with Ritchie’s units arriving in the nick of time, the German attack on Liege loses a lot of it’s force.VII Corps troops claim they had no need to be rescued.

19:00 December 22nd

Hausser finally abandons his assault upon Liege, but VII corps has suffered heavy casualties and will need several days to recuperate.


VII Corps was almost totally disorganised after 2days of fighting

01:00 December 23rd

General Hohne launches another attach in Strasbourg. Patton is forced from planning an attack on Cologne to reinforce Haislip in Strasbourg.

12:00 December 23rd

3rd army arrives in Strasbourg and defeats the German offensive.

9:00 December 24th

With the defeat of German attacks on Eindhoven, Liege and Strasbourg, Eisenhower decides that the time has come to begin offensive operations against the Heer. The Luftwaffe is now grounded due to lack of fuel, and despite bad weather Allied planes enjoy complete air supremacy.

Montgomery is ordered to Bastogne, leaving command of the Canadian army to the French Engineer Monsabert. Supported by XXX corps, 1st and 9th armies, the allied force attacks Rotterdam. Monsabert quickly dislodges to German defenders, but it will be almost a week before allied troops arrive in the marshy terrain as the Germans flood the dikes to prevent the advance. German troops are subject to heavy air bombardment, when weather allows.


The RAF bombs retreating German units in Rotterdam

Now that the German offensive shows signs of abating, Eisenhower details his plans for defeating the Germans to his senior commanders, who must marshal their troops once more, and prepare to go

Across the Rhine!
 

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SecondReich said:
Cool. I like. Write more AARs.
Thanks SecondReich! At least someone likes it.

Ah well, here's the next installment.
 

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Across the Rhine: Part 2


Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

Take calculated risks. That is quite different from being rash.

A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.
General George S. Patton

01:00 December 27th

While Eisenhower reorganises his armies, for a proposed offensive, a probe by Hausser into Liege is quickly driven off.

08:00 December 28th

The US 1st army arrives in Eindhoven. Monsabert, still having failed to occupy Rotterdam is relieved of command in the Rotterdam operation, and Simpson’s 9th army (infantry divisions + HQ) is ordered to move into Rotterdam to aid the 1st Canadian army in occupying the province.

In Eindhoven, Britain’s armoured XXX corps is merged into Bradley’s XII corps, now numbering 9 divisions of 1 HQ, 3 armoured and 5 infantry. The 1st US army is comprised of 8 divisions, including 1 HQ, 1 motorised infantry, 2 armoured and 4 infantry now under Monsabert. Also present in Eindhoven is Dempsey’s 2nd British army of 2 infantry divisions and headquarters.

13:00 December 29th

After a prolonged period of reorganisation as units moved from further south and reassigned to 1st army are brought up to strength, Eisenhower orders Bradley to establish pontoon bridges north of Eindhoven and cross the Rhine into Utrecht, with support from Monsabert’s 1st US army. As both Bradley and Monsabert are known for their engineering skill, the difficult crossing is carried out with some success despite heavy German resistance.


Bradley Liberates the Netherlands


All available air power is directed to interdiction missions in the Netherlands. Although their effectiveness is severely curtailed by poor weather, it will provide some support for Bradley’s offensive.

1:00 December 30th

Hausser launches yet another attack on Strasbourg. Hitler is obsessed with recapturing Alsace-Lorraine, to the detriment of his northern units.

12:00 December 30th

Patton arrives in Strasbourg once again to bring Hausser’s offensive to a halt, while Bradley still struggles to cross into Utrecht in the face of enemy fire

17:00 December 30th

Bradley is able to send Eisenhower good news to celebrate the New Year. German forces have evacuated Utrecht in the face of the might of 1st army and XII Corps.

5:00 January 1st

The year turns sour as German forces under Grimmies reoccupy Utrecht, forcing Bradley to conduct further offensives.


Continued German resistance in Utrecht

12:00 January 1st

Grimmeis is forced to withdraw from Utrecht. Bradley continues his advance, ensuring that nothing is left to chance.


Bradley will not be stopped!

Air recon operations are conducted by the RAF over Westphalia. Despite a lack of any Lutwaffe aircraft, probably grounded due to lack of fuel, 2 minutes of clear skies at midday reveal that despite a large concentration of German units in Cologne, Dortmund and elsewhere, the heavily industrialised city of Essen is virtually undefended. This information is immediately relayed to SHAEF.

15:00 January 1st

After almost a week of marching through semi-frozen mud and slush, harried by wind and snow, Simpson’s 9th finally arrives and is able to occupy Rotterdam. 9th army is greeted by a bleak, starving and cold city, still not fully recovered from the air raids of 1940 and suffering from the Hunger Winter, as the Germans prevent adequate food distribution to the populace in punishment for Dutch enthusiasm over Operation Market Garden.

A brief skirmish with German mechanised infantry in Rotterdam is easily dealt with.


At last, the Rotterdam operation is over

0:400 Jan 2nd

As Bradley’s troops cross their pontoon bridges into Utrecht, Schlemm launches a series of attacks into Liege from Cologne and Aachen, attacking Truscott’s still reorganising forces.

07:00 January 2nd

Ritchie’s II armoured Corps arrives in Liege, again supporting Truscott’s defence of Liege

19:00 January 2nd

Schlemm’s attack into Liege is broken off thanks to Ritchie’s reinforcements, but Bradley faces another counterattack in Utrecht as Harpe launches two infantry divisions against Bradley’s forces.

22:00 January 2nd

Bradley continues his unstoppable advance into Utrecht, as Harpe is forced to retreat.

01:00 January 3rd

General Wiese launches another attack against Bradley with 1 infantry division. Had these attacks been coordinated, Bradley may have been forced to withdraw, but as it is German attacks are desperate un-coordinated distractions.

08:00 January 3rd

1st Canadian army arrives in Rotterdam. 1st Canadian is combined with Simpson’s 9th army, and placed under the overall command of Truscott, whose engineering skills will be useful for an offensive north into Amsterdam. Montgomery takes over Truscott’s command of VII corps.

10:00 January 3rd

Bradley’s troops are finally able to occupy Utrecht, but face immediate attack from Field Marshall Manteuffel. Hitler is passing out Field Marshall’s batons like candy.

19:00 January 3rd

Manteuffel’s attack into Utrecht is defeated with heavy losses. The large German force in Amsterdam, comprising almost 100,000 men, is now totally cut off from supplies and should be forced to surrender very soon. 1st Canadian Army and XII corps are given extra supplies for the coming offensive.

00:00 January 4th

Not yet ready to admit defeat, General Harpe attempts to break through from Arnhem and rescue the surrounded troops.


Harpe struggles in vane to breakthrough Bradley’s army.

09:00 January 4th

Harpe’s attempt to save the Amsterdam pocket is defeated. The German units in Amsterdam are now doomed. The 1st Free French army under Tassigny arrives in Eindhoven, after a long march north.

In Utrecht, Bradley’s armoured units are split off from his command and placed under General Hodges, a commander known for his skill in handling armoured units.

12:00 January 4th

At noon on January 4th, Eisenhower switched tactics and prepared to roll the Germans back to Berlin. Aachen, Amsterdam and Cologne were chosen as the targets of the January 4th Offensives. All available air power was ordered to provide support for the Aachen and Cologne offensives.

Attacking into Amsterdam were the 1st Canadian Army, Bradley’s XII Corps and the newly formed XX armoured Corps under Hodges, with a total of 16 HQ, infantry and armoured divisions. Opposing them were 10 out of supply infantry, motorised and mechanised infantry divisions under Keppler.


Keppler fights a valiant but doomed struggle

The Aachen operation was led personally by Eisenhower. Units under his command included the XVI corps, Task Force Dunkirk (Schmidt) and II French Corps under O’Connor. Eisenhower’s total forces were 9 infantry, 3 armoured, one motorised infantry division and Eisenhower’s HQ. Opposing Eisenhower were 6 infantry and one armoured divisions under the overall command of General Bayerlein.


Eisenhower attacks Aachen

The Cologne operation was the largest and faced the most determined resistance. “Fort Buster” Montgomery was in overall command of the operation, although Patton,(3rd army) Gerow, Crerar(XIII Corps), and Ritchie (2nd armoured) played subordinate roles. Total allied forces were 14 infantry, 7 armoured and one HQ division, while opposing Montgomery were 3 infantry and 7 armoured divisions under Hausser. The Germans could also count on the medium level (3) fortifications defending Cologne.


Reserves for all operations are relatively low, and include the 2nd British army under Dempsey and the III French Corps of Middleton, each consisting of 2 infantry divisions.

08:00 January 5th

After a defence crippled by lack of ammunition and food, Keppler and 10 divisions under his command surrender in Amsterdam. Although the mass surrender of nearly 100,000 men is a great victory, this is the only piece of good news. Hausser and Bayerlein resist fiercely, with Hausser successfully counterattacking against allied forces. Unless some breakthrough occurs, it looks like both the Aachen and Cologne attacks will fail.


Hausser’s skill was too strong

09:00 January 5th

Things get far worse for Eisenhower as Model launches a 20 division counterattack into Eindhoven. With several divisions caught between attacking Aachen and defending Eindhoven, Model’s attack has been launched at the perfect time. If it is successful it stands a good chance of cutting off Bradley’s forces in Utrecht, and giving the Germans revenge for the surrender at Amsterdam.

In the skies, USAAF and RAF pilots offer what support they can to allied ground troops, but are hindered by bad weather. The entire front is alive with fighting.


Battles everywhere

17:00 January 5th

Montgomery calls off the Cologne Offensive, leading to several insults by General Patton as to his manhood. However, Monty had little choice, as allied divisions are exhausted after more than a full day of fighting for practically zero gain.

In the Netherlands, the allies scramble to find more units to send to Eindhoven, as Model pushes further towards Eindhoven and attempts to drive the Allies into the sea.

10:00 January 6th

As Dempsey’s 2nd British army struggles to hold the line against waves of Volksturm, Infantry and Panzers, Eisenhower calls off the Aachen attack to allow the units to concentrate upon one front. Whether this will be enough, only time will tell.

As continued evidence of German Offensive strength, Field Marshall Manteuffel launches 22 divisions against Haislip’s 7th army in Strasbourg.

With defeated offensives and massive German attacks and several key provinces, will the Allies ever get

Across the Rhine?
 
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So this is what you are currently writing! Nice, you'll have me craving HoI2 despite not even having seriously started on HoI itself. :p

As always, your writing is entertaining. Not quite the stiff-upper-lip stuff from the Official History (which wouldn't be fitting anyhow), but still a nice history book feel to it.
 

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Don't Stop

By all means, keep going, even though you got the game. The Demo overwhelmed me, i mean it. I'm a grizzled old HoI vet, but this feels like a brand new game. More tips on how to do it, please.
 

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Wow! Congrats on bottling up the jerries in Amsterdam, I tried that too but unsucessfully because I was constantly under attack at Antwerp.
In the end the situation looked a lot like yours: Stalemate because of a stiff German defense. I expected them to be too disorganised to put up such a defense, especially after I managed to encircle and destroy a full 12 divisions at Aachen.
BTW: That concept of mobile reserves is definetely worth remembering...

Playing as the germans was real fun, I rolled up the whole of Alsace-Lorraine, captured Luxembourg and Antwerp - only to realise at some point that I was out of Oil! My that was a rude awakening ;)
 

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Udi said:
Good writing!
Thanks Udi! :)

Stuyvesant said:
So this is what you are currently writing! Nice, you'll have me craving HoI2 despite not even having seriously started on HoI itself.

As always, your writing is entertaining. Not quite the stiff-upper-lip stuff from the Official History (which wouldn't be fitting anyhow), but still a nice history book feel to it.
Yes, I'm afraid that since I started playing the demo I have neglected my role as Official Historian of the British Empire. But that will change. This AAR has only a few chapters to go, then I'll be free to finish the Official History. And from what I've heard, you might want to start HOI2 instead of playing HOI.

O'Donnel Aboo! said:
By all means, keep going, even though you got the game. The Demo overwhelmed me, i mean it. I'm a grizzled old HoI vet, but this feels like a brand new game. More tips on how to do it, please.
Well, I guess the main thing to do as the allies is set up good mobile reserves. You're on the defensive for a while. The first step is evacuating Aachen and defending Eindhoven with everything you've got. I was lucky in this particular game I had a breakthrough. Oh, and as this is winter, airpower is almost negligeble. Tanks and infantry all the way.

Also, in winter, the defence has a lot of bonuses. Only >2:1 force from mumtiple directions stand a chance of success.

Meltdown 1986 said:
Wow! Congrats on bottling up the jerries in Amsterdam, I tried that too but unsucessfully because I was constantly under attack at Antwerp.
In the end the situation looked a lot like yours: Stalemate because of a stiff German defense. I expected them to be too disorganised to put up such a defense, especially after I managed to encircle and destroy a full 12 divisions at Aachen.
BTW: That concept of mobile reserves is definetely worth remembering...

Playing as the germans was real fun, I rolled up the whole of Alsace-Lorraine, captured Luxembourg and Antwerp - only to realise at some point that I was out of Oil! My that was a rude awakening
Thanks Meltdown, key to bottling up the Germans in Amsterdam is taking Rotterdam first, has to be fully occupied. Then attacking into Utrecht with your best troops. It's a one front attack, so it has to be max forces under Engineer commanders, and Bradley is the best, Monsabert and Truscott are equal second. I used 17 divisions, and it was just enough. You also need to have a few divisions left behind in Eindhoven in case the Germans attack.

And we haven't reached stalemate yet... :D

Well, here we go with the next chapter!
 
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Across the Rhine! Part 3

17:00 January 6th

Reinforcements of the 1st French army, commanded by newly promoted Field Marshall Tassigny arrived in Eindhoven throughout the day. With night falling, Model’s Eindhoven offensive is finally brought under control as Tassigny counterattacks. A serious breach in allied lines is prevented.


Eindhoven saved

Further south, Haislip still struggles against superior German forces as night falls.


Haislip struggles to hang on.

22:00 January 6th

Walker arrives in Strasbourg with armoured reinforcements in the nick of time. Despite lack of rest since participating in the unsuccessful Cologne attack, Walker’s weary warriors arrive to do battle.

03:00 January 7th

Manteuffel reluctantly calls off the Strasbourg attack- the 7th army has held on once more. Hitler is rumoured to be becoming increasingly impatient with his generals’ lack of progress. Both sides armies are almost worn out, and apart from minor aerial operations, it is “All Quiet on the Western Front”.


January 7th and 8th saw little action by either side

Weary troops on both sides took the opportunity for much needed rest. Tank tracks were replaces, vehicles were repaired, rifles cleaned . “Lili Marlene” was occasionally hummed.

But at his field headquarters in Antwerp Field Marshall Eisenhower was hard at work developing plans to break through the German lines. He believed that the previous offensives had failed due to the dispersal of forces and lack of reserves. Rather than attack the line all at once, future attacks would occur sequentially. First Aachen, then Cologne, and then hopefully, an attack across the Rhine. Eisenhower’s strategy for an attack would be risky, but he hoped decisive. It also required a high degree of cooperation between forces, and was kept highly secret from most allied troops. The meaning of the initials of the offensive, designated Operation M. G. II, is a well kept secret.

Eisenhower was also determined that the next attack be successful- otherwise the Germans could simply dig in along the Rhine, and not even George Patton himself could dislodge them.

15:00 January 9th

The relative calm of the first few days is shattered by an attack by Christiansen against Strasbourg, again attacking Haislip’s 7th Army. However, the force of Christiansen’s attack is blunted by a poor chain of command and interference from Hitler, and Haislip is successfully able to delay the offensive.


Strasbourg defended- note the concentration of German HQ units

09:00 January 10th

After 3 days for his armies to reorganise, Eisenhower begins phase I of his Operation “M. G. II” offensive. The first objective is Aachen. Additional forces are present, Ike cannot allow a repeat of the last failure to capture Aachen. Allied forces involved are the VII Corps under Montgomery, 1st Canadian army now under Truscott, XVI Corps, commanded by Eisenhower personally, II French Corps under O’Connor and the now inappropriately named Task Force Dunkirk under Schmidt. Allied forces total 18 divisions, including 12 infantry, 3 armoured, 1 motorised and 2 HQ divisions. Opposing them are 7 divisions under Bayerlein, including 5 infantry, 1 armoured and 1 motorised divisions. This time Eisenhower is confident of victory.


Aachen- the first target of Operation M.G. II


21:00 January 10th

Christiansen’s attack into Strasbourg is defeated, as Bayerlein launches a counterattack against Eisenhower in Aachen.

13:00 January 11th

Bayerlein’s counterattack sapped German strength in Aachen, and he finally retreats. The first objective of Operation MG II is achieved. The next objective is by far the most risky, and will probably determine whether or not the Allies will be able to break through the German lines, or whether they will be forced to sit uselessly as the war is decided in the East.

For days, the XVIII Airborne Corps has been incommunicado in Metz. Comprised of the 82nd, 101st and 17th Airborne divisions, this is the most powerful airborne force available to the Allies. These Elite Paratroops have been cooling their heels since the failure of Operation Market Garden. Now Eisenhower orders them into battle once more. The Airborne units, now equipped with field artillery removed from various command units, enter their Air transports on the morning of January 11th with a mixture of jubilation and foreboding.

XVIII Corps’ mission is to make a daring assault across the Rhine to seize key railway bridges in order to allow the Allies to continue the advance. They must occupy the bridges between Essen and Cologne, and hold them until help arrives. Eisenhower’s plan, Operation Market Garden II is about to begin. But unlike Market Garden, this time it will work! Won’t it?

15:00 January 11th

XVIII Airborne Corps launches its attack- an airborne assault against the German city of Essen. Reconnaissance planes suggest that no German units are present- thankfully, this time they are right. The assault occurs almost perfectly, except that the Commanding Officer, General Patch, is killed as his glider crashes. Lieutenant General Lee takes command.

Eisenhower’s daring assault caught the Germans off guard. Crucial hours are lost when an attack may have crushed the Airborne. The Essen-Cologne railway bridge is captured intact, and explosives removed. It is the first Bridgehead Across the Rhine!

21:00 January 11th

Truscott takes Aachen. The Airborne units will now be able to retreat if necessary, that is if they can swim.

00:00 January 12th

Field Marshall Manteuffel orders a massive assault to recapture Essen. With a total of more than 160,000 men under his command, he outnumbers the lightly armed Paratroopers more than 5 to 1.


Manteuffel prepares to crush the Essen Bridgehead

A kind of calm has descended upon the airborne units as Manteuffel’s units role in. They’re the elite troops, and now it’s their chance to change the course of the war again. Not a man is prepared to surrender.

Will Operation Market Garden II be successful, or will the Airborne units be crushed under the tracks of Manteuffel's Panzers? Keep reading for the next chapter of

Across the Rhine!
 
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Across the Rhine: Part 4


08:00 January 13th

Reorganising his troops after the recapture of Aachen, Eisenhower orders a powerful flank attack from multiple provinces against German troops holding Cologne. The XVIII Airborne is still holding out in Essen- they just won’t quit. Despite heavy losses, their brilliant street fighting holds off Manteuffel’s panzers. All of the allied Commanders know that the men of the 82nd, 101st and 17th Airborne are depending upon them to breakthrough before they’re overrun.


Monty races for Cologne to save the Airborne

12:00 January 13th

Caught between defending Cologne and attacking the Airborne units entrenched in Essen, Hausser in unable to continue either effectively. The assault upon Essen is abandoned, and Hausser’s battered troops make an ignominious retreat from Cologne.


Victory!

02:00 January 14th

The advanced elements of the 2nd (Armoured) Corps under Ritchie enter Cologne. The 3rd army arrives shortly afterwards. Sadly, the city was not fully secured, as later in the morning a German snipers bags a big fish, General Patton himself. The Men of the 3rd Army vow revenge, as their new commander, General Hodges is drafted in from his previous posting occupying Amsterdam.

10:00 January 14th

Major General Schmidt’s Task Force Dunkirk join the airborne in defending Essen, giving much needed relief to the airborne units as Manteuffel attacks again.


Manteuffel again attempts to crush the Essen Bridgehead

14:00 January 14th

Reinforced by Task Force Dunkirk and even more dug in, the Airborne units easily repulse Manteuffel, with the odds a mere 2.5 : 1 they barely break a sweat.

3:00 January 15th

After a day spent reorganising after capturing Cologne, Ritchie’s 2nd Corps and a grieving 3rd Army begin crossing the Rhine to Essen. At the moment, Essen is merely a Bridgehead. Reconnaissance has confirmed powerful German forces surrounding the Essen region in the hills surrounding Dortmund. The Germans have been unable to evict the Allies from their bridgehead, but have so far prevented its enlargement.

11:00 January 15th

Bradley’s XII Corps and the 1st French Army under Monsabert are ordered to advance towards Arnhem. It is unclear as to whether Eisenhower’s motives are to capture the city, probe German defences or draw strength away from the Dortmund region.

14:00 January 15th

Bradley’s Arnhem operation is running into difficulties as General Petersen sends in reserves.


Bradley’s assault into Arnhem faced serious resistance

Allied reserves under Field Marshall Tassigny are sent in, but it is unlikely to be enough.

An irrepressible Manteuffel launches yet another attack on Strasbourg, as allied reserves are sent back in.


Manteuffel attacks again.

Meanwhile, further South, Allied forces continue to cross the Rhine from Cologne to Essen. Eisenhower is gathering a massive force to punch through to Dortmund.

21:00 January 15th

A counterattack by Petersen’s forces sends Bradley, Tassigny and Monsabert scurrying back to Eindhoven and Utrecht. Arnhem resists all attempts at capture.

08:00 January 16th

To begin softening up German forces in Westphalia, all available aircraft are ordered to begin harassing German forces in the region, in both Dortmund and Saarburcken. Again however, bad weather gives relatively poor results.


Round the clock bombardment of the Germans took place

23:00 January 17th

Manteuffel’s attack on Strasbourg is defeated again. Hitler’s obsession with recapturing Alsace-Lorraine is greater than capturing Antwerp, it seems.

The massive allied build up in Essen continues. Many units are given additional supplies for the coming offensive.

09:00 January 18th

After waiting several days for all forces to arrive, as well as substantial time to re-fit and reorganise, Eisenhower launches his attack against Dortmund. Over 20 divisions are collected in Dortmund, supported by another 18 attacking from Eindhoven, Aachen and Cologne. With his troops reeling from the Allied bombing, and vastly outnumbered, Model is unable to prevent Eisenhower from making an immediate breakthrough. The tankers of the 3rd army fight like wild beasts to avenge Patton’s death.


Ike breaks through Model’s defences

10:00 January 20th

Faced with superior numbers and with his defences penetrated, Model orders a general retreat from Dortmund. Allied aircraft harry his retreating troops mercilessly.

12:00 January 20th

Hodges’ 3rd Army captures Dortmund. Massive allied reinforcements are not far behind. A gaping hole has been punched through German defences. “Wacht Am Rhein” has failed. Eisenhower prepared to break out from Dortmund.


Dortmund captured

The Germans are incapable of stooping the Allies now, they are finally

Across the Rhine!

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s thrilling conclusion.
 

Stuyvesant

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Congratulations on breaching the Rhine defenses! So how long do you have in the demo, before time runs out? Will you be able to mop up any German units left over, or will time not permit that?

Looking forward to what you'll do as a finale. :)
 

unmerged(11633)

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Stuyvesant said:
Congratulations on breaching the Rhine defenses! So how long do you have in the demo, before time runs out? Will you be able to mop up any German units left over, or will time not permit that?

Looking forward to what you'll do as a finale. :)
Well, the Battlscenario ends in February is you have a strategic victory, and march if marginal. I mopped up some German units, but not all.

Here's the final battle description anyway, I'm thinking about adding an epilogue.

Across the Rhine! Part 5

With the capture of Dortmund, Allied forces have at last broken through German defences. Hitler’s armies are left scrambling for new defensive positions. Eisenhower is determined not to allow Allied momentum to slow, and orders a series of new offensives to encircle and destroy remaining German units on the Western front, before pushing into Germany itself.

12:00 January 21st

Eisenhower orders his armoured troops onto the offensive. 3rd army is ordered to capture Munster and drive north to Willemshaven. This will encircle all remaining German forces in the Netherlands. II (armoured) Corps is ordered to attack West through Kassel to Schwienfurt, which will isolate the German forces in Southern Germany. Allied infantry has caught up with armoured units, but is ordered to rest before commencing further operations.

06:00 January 22nd

General Student’s paratroopers attempt to recapture Dortmund. Omar Bradley’s XII Corps is ordered to launch a flanking attack against Student’s forces, who are based in Arnhem.

8:00 January 22nd

Student breaks off his attack into Dortmund to concentrate upon the defence of Arnhem. Student’s paratroopers show enormous resistance to Bradley’s forces, despite Bradley receiving reinforcements of the XVIII Airborne Corps.

15:00 January 22nd

3rd Army enters Munster. Only brief resistance by one infantry unit delayed its capture.

12:00 January 23rd

Bradley’s attack into Arnhem is called off. Although the attack into Dortmund has failed, German forces in Arnhem are more than an annoyance.

15:00 January 23rd

3rd Army is ordered to move into Willemhaven, surrounding Student’s pesky parachutists once and for all.

20:00 January 23rd

Richie’s II Amroured Corps enters Kassel. Minor German counterattacks from the Saar are easily defeated.

09:00 January 24th

Ritchie commences his drive towards Schweinfurt. If successful all German forces to the south will be cut off.

12:00 January 24th

Straube launches an offensive against the Flank of 3rd army at Munster, but is quickly defeated.

16:00 January 24th

3rd Army tankers drive into Willemshaven, cutting off the German troops in the Netherlands.

XII Corps reinforces Munster. Relatively little German offensive action has been seen, and it is assumed that the Germans are suffering from severe fuel shortages.

00:00 January 25th

Not content to lay down and die, Student launches a powerful attack out of Arnhem, supported by a rear attack from Saarbrucken. 16 German divisions are opposed in Munster by 4 divisions of infantry of XIII Corps. If successful, 3rd army will be cut off in Willemshaven, and risks destruction.

1st Canadian army is immediately ordered to support the defence of Munster, while Bradley’s XII Corps and Tassigny’s 1st French Army are ordered to conduct a flank attack into Arnhem once more.

09:00 January 25th

Student calls off the attack into Munster faced with Bradley’s powerful flank attack. 3rd army’s supply route is safe.


Student’s attack fails

The troops in the Netherlands will not escape, but they don’t know that yet, as Tassigny advances into Arnhem.


Advance into Arnhem

Meanwhile, in the south 2nd Armoured Corps rolls into Schweinfurt.


Scweinfurt falls

14:00 January 25th

Student’s paratroopers are finally forced to retreat from Arnhem. The city is again in allied hands, and the failure of the original Operation Market Garden has been avenged. The Dutch Cheer as Bradley’s forces march in.

Field Marshall Montgomery, after marshalling forces in several different regions, including forces based in Dortmund, Cologne, Luxembourg and Haislip’s experienced 7th Army in Strasbourg orders an assault upon the Saarburcken region, the first bastion of German strength in the Siegfried line defending Germany. Montgomery commands 22 divisions in total, while General Obstfelder commands 10.


Assault on Saarburcken

Control of Saarbrucken will be absolutely vital if the allies are to break the Siegfried line.

11:00 January 26th

The battle for control of Saarbrucken continues as the allies are forced to storm fortifications with flamethrowers, grenades and bayonets. Manteuffel launches an attack into Schweinfurt.

01:00 January 27th

Manteuffel’s attempt to retake Schweinfurt is prevented.

XVI Corps arrives in Kassel, but is immediately ordered to support the attack upon Saarburcken.

17:00 January 27th

After two days of heavy fighting, the Germans retreat from Saarbrucken. Lt General Walker’s XXI Corps, previously assigned as mobile reserves in Luxembourg, is the first Allied troops to secure the region. The breach in the Rhine wall has become a flood of men and machines.


Saarburcken captured

12:00 January 28th

In Groeningen in the Northern Netherlands, General Petersen and 8 divisions attempts to break out towards Munster. The 1st Canadian Army, recently arrived in Arnhem is ordered to attack towards Leiwarden as Bradley’s XII corps requires a long period of reorganisation.

In the South, Haislip’s 7th army and Bethouart’s III French Corps are ordered to attack Freiburg. They are eager, having for so long been forced on the defensive. Perhaps too eager, as the German defences prove tougher than imagined.


Haislip falters in Freiburg.

06:00 January 29th

With the Freiburg assault faltering, allied airpower is directed to interdiction missions to support Haislip’s attack.

09:00 January 29th

1st Canadian army captures Leuwarden, leaving Groeningen as the only Dutch city in German control. Bradley’s XII Corps is ordered to attack, supported by 1st Canadian and 1st French armies.


Bradley’s advance into the Netherlands proved unstoppable, after a few false starts

10:00 January 30th

The Groeningen pocket is eliminated, and Petersen, Student and all other German forces in the Netherlands surrender. In the space of a few days, 16 German divisions have been captured or destroyed.

23:00 February 1st

At last, the assault in Freiburg is abandoned. Southern German will take some time to be taken, prompting fears of a Nazi national redoubt in Bavaria.

00:00 Feb 3rd

3rd army captures Hannover. With allied forces streaming virtually unchecked into northern Germany, and German forces in the south unbeaten but contained, Eisenhower was able to begin a new series of offensives, this time against the heart of the enemy: Berlin.


Victory!

The End

Hope you enjoyed it! Might post a short epilogue about the advange into German if people want it, but otherwise, it’s over!
 

Stuyvesant

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And so it ends. It was nice reading about a (fairly) easy Allied advance deep into Germany, as opposed to an undecided slog in the Ardennes. And thank you for liberating my home country a couple of months early. ;)

It felt really strange, though, to see Eisenhower in an operational capacity. It just doesn't seem right for him to be actually LEADING troops. He belongs behind a desk, playing diplomat between US generals and Montgomery. :p

Well, I enjoyed reading this. Paradox should be proud of you: if I had the money, I'd probably order HoI2 right away. As it is, I'll just have to dig up my copy of HoI and make do with that. :)

See you around, either here or with the official British history!