• Victoria 3 - Sign up now!

    The journey begins, sign up now and get a special in-game item when the game is released.


  • Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning
  • Crusader Kings II Expansion Subscription

    Subscribe to the CK II Expansion and enjoy unlimited access to 13 major expansions and more!


James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
The purpose of this AAR is to document a method I’ve found for winning the second world war as Germany, using submarines, paratroopers, and puppets. It will be part comedy, part tutorial, and depending on how my luck goes, another part comedy (this time, of errors!) Make sure you’re sitting comfortably, as we play Darkest Hour – The game of high-explosive diplomacy!

We’re going to pick a Nazi Germany – none of that yucky communism stuff here, please! National Socialism – the Nice Option!

First of all, go to the production tab. In the automated trade section you’ll want to stockpile oil – we’re going to need it! We’re going to set up ten factory runs in eastern provinces, out of the range of allied bombers, and two runs of ten forts in the border provinces against France. Since we’re going to inherit Saarbrucken later, there’s no need to fortify the province nearby. The other things we’re going to do are set up a run of 3 interceptors, 3 transports, and 3 tactical bombers to fill up the squadrons present in Berlin.

0o4BvSV.png


Head on over to diplomacy and take Rudolf Diels for the -10% consumer goods need, and any of the Industrial Specialists in the intelligence minister slot for the +1% IC. Come October, we will add in Hjalmar Schacht in the Armaments Minister slot for +5% IC. Move towards Hawk Lobby to reduce production cost and time, and Free Market to reduce upgrade cost, and to get the sweet Free Market events.

The priorities in technology are as follows:

1. Industry – you need to maximise every ounce of IC and supply production efficiency that you can, plus research modifiers. I also like researching nuclear weapons, though if this grand plan works, the war will be over before we can use them.

2. Armour – what’s Germany with Panzerkampfwagens?

3. Aircraft – we want CAS, FTR, TAC and TRA techs, plus the doctrines. Most important is the doctrine that allows us to perform airborne assaults!

4. Submarines – U-boots are going to be the key we use to secure the route to England and victory – more on that later!

5. Infantry – while Infantry are obviously important because they will form the core of our army, their technologies are not actually completely vital. They’re nice to collect if we can, but in the early game I find there’s plenty of time to pick up everything we need.

2IKRjJR.png


For this AAR I’m assuming the reader is familiar with how events work – Germany largely plays itself, and if you follow the events you’ll be alright. I’ll include some of them to help orient the reader, but mostly my screenshots will be of important player decisions and maps rather than the stuff that plays out on it’s own.

In January 1934, we get very lucky, and one of the Free Market events triggers, giving us free blueprints. They aren’t hugely useful blueprints, but every little helps! If we can, we will eventually make a small corps of marines for beach landings, but that small increase in research efficiency is more exciting.

DuLd4EV.png



One of the things new players may not be familiar with is money devaluation – in the early game, since you’re not allowed to produce much due to manpower rules, you’ll find yourself with a lot of money, and to my mind the best way to use it is to devalue your currency. This gives you a +0.5% IC, which as Germany can be as much as two or three whole effective IC, which is MUCH better than waiting for the Public Works decision – I believe that gives you +5% IC, but it also produces 1 IC in a province somewhere. To my mind, that’s not worth it for the 6000 that it costs. I’d rather take the small increase earlier than a bigger one down the line – but I’m sure if I were to do the maths the Public Works would be better.

Bear in mind that as Germany you also want to spend lots of money buttering up Austria so you can achieve as early an Anschluss as possible.

DdTlsVs.png


After we annex the Saarland from the hated Hon-hon-hons, I start a run of 30 submarines. In this latest patch, you can’t fit submarines with torpedos, but they remain the best way for Germany to compete on the sea. Don’t try to win a stand-up fight, but if you intercept an enemy fleet, even if you lose a load of subs you’re bound to sink something much more expensive than a submarine – it’s the easiest way to send the Royal Navy to the bottom!


8el4644.png


Another important set of repeatable decisions – the Recruitment Campaign! During peacetime it’s a swap of 1500 money for 40 manpower, and you could probably do it five times in a game before Danzig or War – you’re looking at 200 manpower extra. That’s a big sum, and you can’t afford NOT to take it! This will provide the manpower you’ll need to build the airforce and panzers during peace.

PJqgD6r.png


Making sure you don’t waste dissent reduction is also important – as Germany there’s usually a dissent-reducing event on the horizon, so take every opportunity you can to use that dissent. I use Purge of the Army to improve morale, though it costs us a few good leaders. A few days later, we Create the Wehrmacht, which also reduces dissent.

dUX7Ywk.png


In 1937, our first Panzers roll off the line – we should have 6 Light Armour Divisions ready for Fall Weiss, and with better optimisation it is probably possible to get 9 out without compromising the rest of this build.

The rest of 1937 is pretty quiet; when we finish the new Sub tech I order another fleet of thirty, and thanks to our 200 relations with Austria, we get the Anschluss pretty much the first week of 1938.

zH59Ap9.png


06nyfgM.png


1938 is also pretty dull – the Condor Legion comes home, Fat Bastard Goering works out that you can throw men from a plane into combat. An anonymous member of the Luftwaffe suggests that perhaps we could give the men parachutes, which is exactly the sort of bold radical thinking we’re after! The paratroopers won’t actually be available until early 1940, which may even be late to join in Fall Gelb, but they’ll get their chance to shine…

After the Anschluss, we ‘invite’ the Czechs over for tea and a friendly chat about SURRENDERING TO ZE REICH BEFORR IT IST TOO LATE! Prime Minister Nev helps us by looking the other way at some bits of paper he likes the look of while we diplomatically beat the snot out of the Czech ambassador until he gives us the Sudetenland. (There is a mistake here – because I get a free Hawk Lobby move from this event, I should have moved over to Free Market earlier. Not to worry – it’s not a huge difference in the grand scheme of things, but in a strategy as risky as this I should be paying attention to marginal details like that.)

R2O76bo.png

I love diplomacy.

Speaking of diplomacy, Hjalmar Schacht decides he’d like to go and do some fishing, or whatever it is retired economists do. We diplomatically ask him to stay, and the amount of noise he makes whinging and complaining about not being allowed to go home is so awful that the entire Reich hears it, causing a massive spike in dissent which can only be cured by increased production of toasters and Volkswagens.

0BeP5wE.png


At the top of ’39 we get our penultimate free grab – we split Czechoslovakia with Hungary in exchange for an alliance. I instantly assume military control and place their army on the new Polish border.

Just in case something should happen.

Not that anything WOULD happen.

Say, what’s that tasty-looking IC doing in Lithuania? We fire Claim on Memel, and secure a strategic supply of funny cat pictures and reaction gifs. (I’ll get my coat.)

As if to distract from my bad puns, Molotov and von Ribbentrop agree that Poland is making the map look ugly, and it would only be polite to neaten things up a bit. The Polish are less keen on this. We fire up the diplomatic corps – all seventy divisions of them – and let ourselves in to discuss the issue with the Poles.

nufpYj3.png


At the outbreak of war, our order of battle is as follows:

OBERKOMMANDO DES WEST:

Saarbrucken – 3 Cavalry Divisions, 6 Infantry Divisions, 4 Forts.
Mainz – 9 Infantry Divisions, 4 Forts.
Freiburg – 6 Infantry Divisions, plus 3 en route, 4 Forts.
En route: 1 HQ Division

kH6YTAr.png

“Fest steht und true die Wacht, we hate the French,
Fest steht und true die Wacht, we hate the French!”

My diplomats are not very creative lyricists.


Their job is quite simple; keep the frogs away. We do this by setting our men on an extremely high diplomatic alert footing. When the three extra infantry divisions, the French break off an attack on Freiburg, giving us a ‘frei’ hand to deal with Poland.

OBERKOMMANDO DES OST:

Koenigsberg – 1 Infantry Division
Allenstein – 3 Light Armour Divisions
Stettin – 3 Light Armour Divisions, 6 Infantry Divisions
Deutsch-Krone – 6 Infantry Divisions
Meitzen (or something. I’ll be honest, I forgot the province name and all I can see in the screenshot is ‘M’.) – 6 Infantry Divisions
Long Province (I forgot this one too.) – 6 Infantry Divisions
Gleiwitz – 18 Infantry Divisions
Os-something – 4 Mountain Divisions
Hungarian Provinces – 15 Infantry Divisions, 2 Cavalry Divisions, 1 HQ Division


The plan is drawn below; attack the south and north, throw infantry to keep the body of the Polish army busy, wrap around to Warsaw and intercept the border troops as they retreat inwards, causing them to be destroyed. Enemy units only need to retreat into a province with one of our divisions in it to be destroyed, so don’t underestimate the effects of running a quick armoured or motorised group in the enemy rear!

JwC5Ar9.png


LUFTWAFFE:

16 Fighter Divisions in North Germany
8 CAS Divisions in Poland
4 TAC Divisions in Poland
4 TRA Divisions in Poland (doing nothing)
4 INT Divisions in Berlin

The Luftwaffe’s job is simply to shoot down enemy bombers flying over the industrial cities of the Reich. If we left them to it, the Allies can do crippling IC damage, sometimes as much as 20IC lost due to bombs, so it’s best to whack them while we can. The longer the war goes, the better the Allies advantage will become, though, because they can use Canadian, British, ANZAC and South African planes to attack us while we’ve only got the Flying Diplomatic Corps to protect us. ☹

Anyone who’s played a Germany game knows how the Battle of Poland goes – we finish it in just under a month, giving us a chance to turn our hand towards the West. We’re operating on a principle of Strategic Haste – if we slow down at any point the Allies will out-produce us and make conquest impossible. Therefore, the next objectives are, in order:


1. Fall Gelb. Fall right through the Belgians and get the Frogs right in the Gelbs!

2. Fall Seelowe. More details on this top-secret plan later!

3. Unternehmen Weserubung+ - we won’t just invade Denmark and Norway, we’re also going to get Sweden and Finland so we can release UBERSCANDINAVIA and ensure that Paradox Interactive remains our loyal subject!

4. Unternehmen Get-in-there-before-the-italians-bugger-it-up – the invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece. Yugoslavia is useful because we can release Serbia and Croatia, plus the other Balkan states, which provide us with INF divisions which will be valuable in Barbarossa, plus they help eliminate the problem of partisans. They do present an issue with the dissent we get from releasing subjects, but if we’re quick we can wrap up all our wars before the end of 1941 and push down the dissent in time to launch Barbarossa.

Here we are just before the start of July, 1939. We will redeploy some troops, throw everything at the French, and soon we will be hosting diplomacy seminars in the cafés of Paris!
yGyZTqX.png
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
123 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.966
3.626
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Time to fall upon the French like a hammer.
 

Tonagus

Corporal
Feb 5, 2018
45
1
Very good read.
So your first policy change was one step to the Political Left. And that will grant the free market events?

get the Frogs right in the Gelbs!
nice one!
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Very good read.
So your first policy change was one step to the Political Left. And that will grant the free market events?

My first move was Hawk Lobby; I've not touched anything apart from moving toward Hawk Lobby and Free Market. Everything else is exactly as the game leaves it. There is a chance that you can get a Free Market event at any point when you Free Market vs Central Planning score is zero, and the chance increases with each tick towards Free Market.
 

MateuszS

General
68 Badges
Mar 31, 2015
1.926
401
  • Europa Universalis 4: Emperor
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Stellaris: Federations
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Humanoids Species Pack
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury Pre-order
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma Pre-order
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Stellaris: Ancient Relics
  • Stellaris: Lithoids
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars Pre-Order
  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • For The Glory
Personally, I don't like money devaluation - it doesn't change much if you don't have very large IC and can be effective only if you choose it couple times (but that move gives dissent...). I prefer public works instead - yes, it's expensive, but:
- gives IC quite fast
- increases central planning which further increases IC bonus
- doesn't give dissent penalty (sometimes it can be annoying, especially when you have long "shopping list" of units, IC or whatever.

Well, I just prefer safer move.
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Personally, I don't like money devaluation - it doesn't change much if you don't have very large IC and can be effective only if you choose it couple times (but that move gives dissent...). I prefer public works instead - yes, it's expensive, but:
- gives IC quite fast
- increases central planning which further increases IC bonus
- doesn't give dissent penalty (sometimes it can be annoying, especially when you have long "shopping list" of units, IC or whatever.

Well, I just prefer safer move.

In purely mathematical terms, I'd be completely inclined to degree - but I prefer the freedom to spend the money on alliances and bribes as I see fit, whereas £6000 for 1 IC doesn't seem like a good deal. I wasn't actually aware of the Central Planning move, which would be completely against my strategy of playing for the free market events. I know most Germany players choose Central Planning, and there are plenty of AARs which provide a case for it, but I just prefer this play.

The next post should be up in a few hours!
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Fall Gelb – or how I learned to stop worrying and love Belgium!

The order of battle for Fall Gelb is as below:

Wilhemshaven – 6 Infantry Divisions
Munster – 6 Infantry Divisions
Cologne – 6 Infantry Divisions
Aachen – 6 Infantry Divisions, 4 Mountain Divisions
Koblenz – 12 Infantry Divisions, 6 Motorised Divisions, 3 Light Armoured Divisions
Trier – 6 Infantry Divisions, 6 Light Armoured Divisions
En Route – ~20 Hungarian Divisions




Almost the entire Luftwaffe is involved in Fall Gelb, except for one corps of 4 Fighter Divisions to guard Germany, and the 4 Interceptors over Berlin, which are a bit pants anyway to my mind. Too short-range and not fast enough to catch enemy fighters. The TAC Divisions are given Ground Attack over Benelux while the CAS have Ground Support. My TRA Divisions I’m keeping as a reserve in case any units get cut off and I can use them to ferry supplies, but ideally I want them left unused so I don’t have to spend IC repairing them. I’m still well behind on upgrades (>200 IC required) but I trust that ZE IRON VILL OF ZE GERMAN VOLK will be enough to see us through.

The Saarbrucken-Freiburg line remains as it was during Fall Weiss.

The two fleets of submarines are patrolling the North Sea, looking for juicy targets and giving me advance warning of any cheeky attempts by the British to land in Wilhelmhaven – if they did they’d destroy a lot of VERY expensive planes, so we can’t allow that at all! I’ve not yet seen any naval battles, so either the Royal Navy is scared of the submarine threat – which works for me – or the AI is patrolling the Med and the Orient like a fool.

Knowing the AI, I wouldn’t want to try and say which it is. (Please note that the previous statement should not be taken as a commentary on the programming of the AI department at Paradox Interactive, who are great and brilliant and lovely.

Please don’t send Johan around to hit me.)

The Grand Plan is scribbled down below, as illustrated by Herr Feldmarschall Anthony Cecil Silvesterabend des Melchett.

photo.jpg


Don’t let the British uniform fool you: Hr.Fld.A.C.S.des.M is as German as pickelhaubes, sausages, and stealing all the sunloungers at the side of the pool on holidays. The British uniform is purely a diplomatic gesture to our friends over the English Channel – I mean Aermelkanal!

f1UwZAv.png



The red arrows indicate Stage Ein – DER BEGINNERUNG. Divisions will head to pre-chosen targets to knock the defenders out of the way. We attack on a broad front to stop the enemy concentrating force against us, and knock straight through Luxembourg and southern Belgium with the mobile corps. There is no time to waste occupying territory so the infantry must fill in gaps left by the mobile troops. There will be no time to allow for the destruction of pockets, so our airforce must do everything it can to limit enemy fighting power.

The blue arrows indicate Stage Zwei – DER REVENGIGUNGSHEIT. Once Belgium is cut off from France, the Dutch corps will swing south and march across the rivers, wiping the encircled enemy. Meanwhile the mobile corps will seize Paris and the English Channel coast, cutting France off from British assistance. Once these goals are achieved, it will be a simple job to press south to Orleans and Vichy, and knock the French out of the war.

What could possibly go wrong?


boL57Yu.png



By the afternoon of July 13th, Luxembourg surrenders. Frankly, I’m surprised the western allies don’t disintegrate now that the lynchpin of their defensive plans is now ruined. Hope springs eternal, I guess. An hour later our first Panzercorps arrives in Arlon, and we’re racing the French to Mons.

The French beat us to Mons, but I remain confident our mobile corps will complete the encirclement of the Belgian army, which is now falling into our trap by parking itself on our frontline. I’ve included this screenshot as a great example of how destructive airpower can be – that’s 600 men gone, 0.6 MP, in an hour of bombardment with a relatively early tech. Imagine how much damage we could do if we had loads of these planes!

Oh yeah. We do. HERVORRARGEND!


The plan works fairly well. The northern attack pierces Hasselt and through to Bruge, cutting off a huge French army. The southern attack stalls at Mons, so we redirect towards Namur for much of July. This works – over 30 divisions are pulled into Namur, which is a fatal mistake – the French have left Namur unguarded. Our panzers smash through Namur to Lille, cutting off Belgium from the French mainland, and leaving thirty divisions unsupplied and taking attrition. We can hold the front against the French fairly easily, so we can now take our time to systematically destroy the Brussels-Namur-Liege pocket at our leisure.

4Ly1iSO.png



FEP7rzk.png

The state of the line as of the end of the 23rd September, 1939. I took a big risk throwing the mobile corps through at Sedan, and it looked hairy for a time as we lost at Arlons before an infantry corps plugged the gap and secured supply routes.

V208yvq.png

Either the frogs are strategic geniuses and I’ve fallen for a trick, or they’ve made a big mistake in responding to our threat toward the North by abandoning the super-forts their entire defense policy was based on…

By the end of September the French are so desperate for troops to plug their line that they abandon Colmar, allowing me to march through their Maginot line (and steal all of a certain musician’s washing…). In October, the Italians join the war (no jokes about Italian military prowess here, thankyou, we’re DIPLOMATS!) and soon after the French give up, having decided that if even the Italians are beating them, all hope is lost. (Being diplomatic is hard to keep up.)

hezP2ed.png


Despite the dissent hit, I offer them generous peace conditions. Because we don’t have cores on the Atlantic coast, we don’t get much from them (which is why some people like Foreign IC Ministers, to increase the production they can get from foreign conquered territories), and we only really need the north for Seelow. I’m going to plan to have Seelow underway by March 1940, so there’s no real need to even bother with the rest of France.


vR2KIM8.png

Diplomacy isn’t always very exciting. There were almost no explosions at this meeting at all. :<


We fire German Diplomatic Offensive (I thought that was what Fall Gelb was?), and at the Meeting at Hendaye we offer Franco the provinces of Morocco in exchange for his services. He agrees, and I’m keeping an eye on Gibraltar. If I see a good opportunity, I will take control and launch the attack, but it’s not going to be an important consideration for much longer. All that’s left is to upgrade my TRA divisions to the TRA-3 model, which has enough range to reach Hull from Bruges, and…

Wait a minute.

I’ve just heard a salacious rumour that Switzerland’s banks are filled with gold.

Secret Nazi gold.

That means they’ve stolen it from us.


Now that just isn’t cricket!

Note to self; change that word later. Cricket doesn’t seem a very Germanic sport. I suppose we could play it in pickelhauben and use mauser rifles as bats…

It’s time to get that gold back.


YttkkHV.png

DIPLOMACY TIME!

One of the strange quirks of the game is that Germany and Italy both have national provinces on Switzerland, meaning the 9 IC in the two Swiss provinces will be at 100% for me, and the 1 in Lugano will be at 100% for Italy. We launch an invasion, and even the spam of free volunteer divisions the Swiss receive when invaded can’t hold back the weight of our diplomatic arguments and sound reasoning!

hqdefault.jpg

German Gefreiter inspecting the battlefield after a firefight with the Swiss Polish Volunteer Division outside Bern, 1939 (colourised).

With our secret nazi gold recovered, there’s nothing to do but wait. I set Upgrades to take all the IC that is available, so we stop production for a few months. We’re going to need much better troop quality to go on a holiday to that funny island up north…

Lessons from this Fall Gelb:

1. Do not neglect upgrades. I still think I did the right thing in invading early, but my troops really suffered at times, and if I am at a tech disadvantage in Russia (SHHHHH!) I’m never going to survive.

2. No plan survives first contact with the enemy. The neat plan at the start of Fall Gelb quickly fell apart when the French roadblocks arrived, and so I had to improvise. Don’t be afraid to stop an attack and redirect it elsewhere in order to achieve your goals. It’s much more important that you destroy the French armies than anything else; if you need to, retreat into Belgium to trap them.

3. Spend less on airpower; I really could have used some more divisions during this fight – I never had huge gaps in my line, but there were a lot of times when the French were just out-fighting me in the field, and while airpower is fantastic when you have encircled the enemy, you need a lot of INF to punch through the first line, ARM or MOT to exploit the gap and encircle the enemy, and then you need even more INF to hold the pocket while your aircraft and mop-up forces destroy the surrounded enemy.

4. RISK. You have to take risks to win as Germany – as this AAR will show! There were a number of times when a competent human player could have spotted a weakness in my line, exploited it and cut off my armoured columns. You simply don’t have the capacity to win a slow, steady fight with small offensives against the Allies – you have to go big and you have to hit them all the time until they make a mistake like abandoning Colmar or allowing their troops to be cut off in Belgium. Some of my forces, particularly the Mountain divisions and the armoured forces, were at half strength most of Fall Gelb. You don’t have time to baby them – attack!
 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
123 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.966
3.626
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
A very nice operation, conducted with minimum of fuss and plenty of ... diplomatic ... humour :p :)
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Unternehmen Seelow: We set sail for Grimsby

The set-up for Sealion is fairly simple. Since the end of the Battle of France I've had my INT and FTR wings flying over southern England and the North Sea, shooting down any enemy planes we find. The trick isn't even to find good exchanges - it's just to keep the RAF busy while our paratroopers fly in. We've spent our IC on upgrades and will continue to do so until the end of Sealion, when we'll move back on to producing new units.

We have almost thirty TRA divisions so shipping men over isn’t too hard, and our paratroopers are in good condition after a month of resting. We park our submarine stacks in the two sea provinces nearest to Hull, to intercept any wandering Royal Navy vessels, and send off the paratroopers to land in Hull. We also send the TRA divisions out, so that as soon as the paras land, we can sail right into Grimsby, drop the Panzerkampfwagens off, and steal all of their seaside chips and secure the strategic reserve of sunloungers!


S5kGchX.png

Sunloungers, in Hull? I don’t even think that would happen in summer.

After the battle of France, Sealion is actually relatively straightforward; the British tend to lose a good proportion of their strength in France, and they are also spread out in Africa and Asia, meaning that if you can land thirty or forty divisions on the mainland you’re basically set. In this playthrough the Royal Navy has barely appeared – usually my subs really have to wear them down over time before I can achieve Sealion. This might be a patch issue, or it could just be that this game, for some reason, the British AI is leaving the fleet to defend the overseas territories.

PReqo3j.png

The day after boxing day; Grimsby has been liberated from the tyranny of ‘them soft southern poofs’. There is a brief naval skirmish in the Wash which leads to the sinking of the HMS Rodney. The HMS Delboy and HMS Grandad are still unaccounted for.

DvEZFzF.png

New Year’s Day. We begin the attacks on Dumfries and the city of Edinburgh, flattening every building in sight with Stuka attacks. This significantly improves the architectural beauty of the city.

TSMHM5i.png


Britain surrenders on Valentine’s Day, 1940, after we take London. England is released as a puppet, controlling Great Britain and Northern Ireland, except in those provinces where British troops remain. I released Walloonia, Niederlande and Flanders because I thought there was a dissent reduction when you got this surrender event – sadly not. It’s no great disaster though, because it reduces my TC burden, and allows the released nations to use their core (national) provinces at 100% efficiency, producing militia and eventually front-line troops.

The key to my success here (apart from my brilliant, inspired, charismatic but not sexually threatening leadership) was the combined arrival of the paratroopers and transport fleets. By getting as many divisions on the beaches as quickly as I could, I removed Britain’s only real defensive asset – the sea – and from there it was simple. Bear in mind that if you delay Sealion, Britain will produce enough troops to garrison every province, making this strategy of finding an empty port impossible. It is still possible to achieve a Sealion when the Brits have full garrisons, but it’s much harder, and the delay of getting your men on the beaches gives the Brits time to get the Royal Navy to come out and blast the transports.

Another important consideration is that if you knock Britain out of the war early, the USA will never join the war on the Allies’ side. This gives us a free hand to rearrange Europe as we see fit, and now the only time pressure we have is getting ready for Barbarossa before the Soviets’ greater IC can help them produce an army we can’t outfight.


p9Hbsrw.png

It looks nice, but I still think the map could do with some improvement…


One last amusing note – National Socialist England is lead by Aneurin Bevan as Head of State, Oswald Mosely as Head of Government, and the Intelligence Minister is a German chap by the utterly spectacular name of ‘FRANZ ALFRED SIX’.

I wonder what happened to the other five…

NEXT TIME: UNTERNEHMEN SWEDISH MEATBALLS, AND WE GO HOLIDAYING IN THE SOUTH OF EUROPE!
 
Last edited:

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Part the Fourth: April Fool’s Day

One of the fun events that you can get in DH is aligning Yugoslavia – you only need to put nine divisions in Graz and fire.

Unfortunately, the very same day they join the alliance, they also leave it. That must have been a very quick protest movement.

UjOPSy5.png


I’m not going to invade yet, because I’ve got an appointment at IKEA, but I’ve got my eye on those southern slavs…

We fire ‘Unternehmen Weserubung’ and send our Panzers over the border to Denmark. I’ve got my paratroopers in Koenigsberg so that they can drop into Sweden once we declare war a few days later, and I have a landing party ready to storm the beaches of Umea, which will give us a free run to Sweden’s northern VP and Narvik.

The key to winning this one really is invading from the sea and air – you can quickly seize Sweden’s VPs and annex them, knocking them out of the war and allowing you to focus on Norway. I’ve not included many screenshots because it really is a cakewalk compared to France. By the end of May, Scandinavia has surrendered. We just have one more target to add…

One interesting aside – Franco has stormed Gibraltar. We took military control to take Gibraltar, but otherwise I’m leaving him to his own business in Africa. With Gibraltar taken, British troops in Egypt have to supply themselves all the way around the Cape of Good Hope, placing their supply convoys at risk of naval attack by Italy and Spain. Egypt, seeing the writing on the wall, sends a message to our ACTUAL diplomats asking to be allowed into the cool kid’s club.

7FwcAvl.png


2W12rsT.png

If I didn’t know better, I’d say the Brits were keen on keeping Gibraltar…

Uost9HC.png

Now we’re in trouble. Though the Soviets shouldn’t declare war, I put some INF divisions on our common border, just in case…

2FnretK.png


We invade Finland through Sweden and air & sea invasions at Oulu, and by 21st June, we have the whole Scandinavian peninsula.

bq6Ohyx.png


We release Scandinavia, which will be a reliable ally. The reason I prefer Scandinavia to Finland, with her pre-built army, is the following:

1. Finland is a bit tricky to get into the war – she likes her independence, and if the Soviets advance too far she will switch sides, which will free the Soviets up to throw more men at the Polish front.

2. Finland is actually very poor in terms of IC. While Scandinavia’s ministers are so corrupt that they take about 10 IC off their base IC total, 67 IC is still nothing to be sniffed at. Usually Scandinavia will produce mostly infantry and motorised divisions, which are always welcome.

3. Scandinavia and Finland gives me another axis (pardon the pun!) to advance on the Soviets – we can storm through Karelia, seize Murmansk and the land bridges to Russia proper, and then hold them until we need to attack Leningrad. It forces the Soviets to spread their manpower, and I’m prepared to risk spreading myself out if it means the Soviets must do so as well. Remember, I’ve got all of Europe’s resources at my disposal at this point, while the Soviets only have the traditional 300 or so divisions.


IG5li50.png


IKEA, pickled herring, butter biscuits, moose – by your powers combined, we are SCANDINAVIA!

Next, we invade Yugoslavia – this was simplicity itself. We storm through Yugoslavia and Greece (which had already declared war) and wrap the southern front up by winter, including paratroops dropping at Malta and Crete. Bulgaria joins the FREUNDSCHAFTVERBUND FUR GANZEUROPAEROBERT-ING, and I take a big dissent hit to release Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, Slovenia and Generalgouvrement Polen. All of these have at least one core on a province we can’t otherwise make use of, and they will all produce militia and infantry divisions which will take care of partisans and help us swell the ranks of our combined armed forces.

RzxJ1q6.png


Important point worth discussing – because I offered Spain the provinces of Morocco at the Meeting at Hendaye, the Meeting at Montoire becomes unavailable, meaning the French will never join the Axis. This isn’t a huge problem because it only means that I have to manually transport the Spanish divisions into the field rather than use Strategic Redeployment, but France’s higher IC and production capacity would have been welcome. Taking Gibraltar was also important to make Italy’s job in Egypt easier, so I won’t say which choice is necessarily better – make your decision based on what your priorities are – do you want more troops for Barbarossa, or do you want control of Africa? I prefer to have Italy take Africa, but I couldn’t tell you which is the optimal strategy for min-maxing.

GsMm2OL.png

The Free Market provides! Markets not free for Poles, Frenchmen, Swiss, Scandis, Slavs, or anyone who puts the milk in before the tea.

Canada annexes the UK, after the ‘Empire Falls Apart’ events divide the UK’s holdings among her former puppets. I don’t plan on completely wiping out the Allies because invading Canada is a pain in the butt, and they no longer have any ability to meaningfully attack me. I have bigger rindfleisch to kuechen.

TI2g9u1.png


726IIil.png

There are something in the order of a hundred and eighty divisions in this picture alone. It’s telling that it still doesn’t feel like enough to win against the Soviets.

These are the force dispositions as of January, 1941. Unternehmen Freimarkt is due to launch on the 1st March, 1941, weather permitting. I’m prepared to delay until the 1st April, 1941, but thereafter we will be getting very close to the time when the Soviets simply have too many divisions to fight off. I’m pouring my IC into building modern INF and ARM divisions. I should have something in the order of 250 divisions of varying quality before we introduce free market economics to the Soviet Union.

Next time: I don’t know ‘whether’ the ‘weather’ will be clement…
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
123 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.966
3.626
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Very odd to think of Bevin as a fascist puppet head of state.
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Very odd to think of Bevin as a fascist puppet head of state.

I bet cabinet meetings between him and Moseley are fun.

"I think we should set up a National Health Service, boyo!"
"I think we should light a fire that the ages shall not extinguish!"

I like to imagine Dr.Six sitting in the corner just writing everything down and putting people on a list like the U-boat captain in Dad's Army.
 

AvatarOfKhaine

Colonel
57 Badges
Feb 19, 2015
1.008
100
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Victoria 2
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Rome Gold
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Semper Fi
I bet cabinet meetings between him and Moseley are fun.

"I think we should set up a National Health Service, boyo!"
"I think we should light a fire that the ages shall not extinguish!"

I like to imagine Dr.Six sitting in the corner just writing everything down and putting people on a list like the U-boat captain in Dad's Army.

Mosely did use to be a Keynesian Labourite, Bevin might bite the bullet and decide that helping the haves and trying to eventually expand it to the have nots is worth it.

Mosley was very much a nationalist socialist after all.
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Part Five: Drang nach Osten

We launch Barbarossa on the 1st March, 1941. Our initial plan to destroy the enemy at the borders is depicted below:

JCBnMdF.png


Sure, the map looks good, but it could look BETTER. I think the arrows and the giant eyelashes I’ve added really improve eastern Europe.

Heeresgruppe Scandiavien: Paratroopers seize Kem while our armoured troops storm Karelia, cutting the Murmansk peninsula off. There are around thirty divisions up there, which we can destroy quickly before swinging south to threaten Leningrad and Novgorod. It is key that a swift victory is achieved here, or else the Soviet divisions will be reinforced and become unbeatable in dug-in positions in favourable defensive forests and forts.

Heeresgruppe Koenigsberg: The Spanish Corps attack North while our own divisions press all along the front. The goal here is simply to occupy as many soviets as possible. The real action will take place further down the line. If possible, the Heeresgruppe will attempt to liberate the Balts, but no excessive casualties are permitted. This Heeresgruppe has relatively little armour, so I expect no quick advance.

Heeresgruppe Polen: Hausser’s mobile Corps will drive though the Soviets towards Proskurov. The rest of the Heeresgruppe will seize territory and delay the enemy, preventing them retreating east. Once this is achieved, Heeresgruppe Polen will head for Smolensk and the central Russian cities.

Heeresgruppe Sud: The combined Hungarian-Romanian forces will drive towards Proskurov from the south, achieving an encirclement of the Soviet central front. We will then eliminate the pocket and drive on Kiev.

I hope to have the initial objectives completed by the 15th April, after which we will have weakened the Soviets sufficiently that we can draw plans to attack Moscow, Arkhangelsk, and Stalingrad. The Luftwaffe will be tasked with the destruction of the Soviet air force, and the bombardment of trapped divisions.

RPL1SPD.png


DgxWwXr.png


Hmm. That’s not quite worked. The front lines have certainly moved East, but critically we haven’t achieved the encirclements I had hoped for.

Much like the real Germany of our WWII, I’ve hugely underestimated Soviet capabilities. They’ve held on where I expected to smash through them, and the only major successes I’ve had are with Heeresgruppe Scandinavien and Heeresgruppe Sud. Straight away it becomes clear that we’re not going to have the cakewalk I hoped for, so I change priorities; I will hold in the centre, mop up the southern and northern pockets, and then review at the start of June.

We get some success in destroying divisions in the south, which I fail to screenshot, but in the north we achieve the capture of some 100,000 Soviets and almost 8000 motor vehicles – even for a power like the Soviet Union, that has to smart. Murmansk is proving a tough nut to crack, but we are at the gates of Leningrad with the English Corps, and once we wipe out the stragglers the Soviets have sent to our rear we should be able to consolidate and wipe out that northern pocket quite neatly. Holding the line in the south of Heeresgruppe Scandinavien should not be a problem, since our best motorised divisions under Manstein are looking after the situation.

IU7PtUq.png

Prices of Trabants will be so low in Berlin, people might even consider buying one for their own use!


Skipping ahead to June, the situation still looks grim. While we have destroyed large formations of air forces by capturing their airfields during our advance, we still haven’t achieved the strategic objectives set three months ago, and despite the successes on the peripheral fronts, the main show – Poland – still is showing little signs of progress, and we can’t afford a slow advance, because each day that goes past is a day the Soviets’ higher IC puts them further ahead. We will need to activate Full Mobilisation soon, which will slow our economy massively, and we’re still pouring around 100 IC into reinforcements before we even look at production or upgrades. We will need better news during the summer offensives.

rN90PAN.png


Casualty figures as of 1st June, 1941. The Soviets have lost more in the last three months than I have in the last two years of war, but they can survive those losses – I can’t. I’ve got to find a way to break their line and achieve a kesselschlacht, or else they will drown me in Russian blood (which I’m told can be used as an alcoholic beverage, a fuel, an antifreeze and a manly cologne).

VWL9Jaj.png


The front lines as of June 1st, 1941. Note the distant lack of arrows and eyelashes!

NEXT TIME: Let’s all take a deep breath and count to OVER FOUR HUNDRED IC?! WHAT THE BLOODY HELL WAS I THINKING?!
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
123 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.966
3.626
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
That does indeed look like a frustrated offensive. The gains in the north appear more impressive than they actually are. The south look slike it might have possibilities though.
 

James Beil

Captain
72 Badges
Nov 28, 2010
366
7
  • Semper Fi
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Rome Gold
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
Part Six: Well, we’re here now…

Firstly, a quick strategic review.

LAND: On land, me and the Soviets are roughly evenly-balanced; I suspect between me and my horde of puppets we have more or less the same number of divisions, though the Soviets will have loads more waiting to come off the production lines. In the North, we are outnumbered, but because we are sitting behind rivers facing the Russian mainland, the enemy will not attack. We both know that there is no way to force a way across those rivers, so for the moment we are in a holding pattern. In the far north, near Murmansk, I have superior forces. The trouble is concentrating them; the Soviets are slippery, and it’s very hard to nail them down so that we can separate their forces and smash them one-by-one.

On the central front, things are much worse. The only thing keeping me moving forward is my ability to temporarily surround enemy forces, but they are always able to break out because of the massive numerical superiority of the enemy on this front. At the moment, I cannot force a victory here without losing so many men and so much organisation that I’ll be thrown back. This is the boomerang front.

Fury-Boomerang-Real-Wood-22-Inch-Span.jpg


Bloody Soviets and their aerofoil design! When I throw them back I want them to stay thrown back!

In the south, a surface analysis shows us doing very well. However, there are deeper problems. Our protuberance into the Ukraine is very tenous, and whenever the Soviets attack they look like they might cut off the Bulgarians at the tip of the front, which would be disastrous; they represent about half the force in this sector.

AIR: The Soviets are fighting on home turf, so they have a natural advantage, but much of their airforce has been whacked on the ground by overrunning airfields. Were we to concentrate our forces at a single point, I believe I would come out on top. Unfortunately, the front is so wide that I can’t afford to place all my air assets in one place unless I have a clear shot at an objective.

NAVY: I have total dominance of the seas. The only problem is that’s not doing me any good! I can ship reinforcements from England (particularly the mobile divisions they produce) and Spain (mostly infantry) but otherwise this is as much use as a chocolate Hitler.

Milk_chocolate_hitler_bite.jpg

Delicious, but impractical.

With this in mind, we draw up new objectives for the summer.

TOP PRIORITY: CLOSE OUT THE SCANDINAVIAN FRONT. The Soviets have something like two hundred thousand men in that sector behind our lines, and they must be dealt with. Once this theatre is cleared, the mobile troops will be relocated to Heeresgruppe Koenigsberg, and the line will be occupied by infantry and allied troops.

TOP PRIORITY: CONSOLIDATE UKRAINE. As things stand, our position in the Ukraine is untenable. As painful as it is, I have to concede some ground to recover to a defensible position and rest the Bulgarians. If I don’t, it is almost inevitable they will be cut off and destroyed, which will totally erase any progress we have made so far.

SECONDARY PRIORITY: ENCIRCLEMENTS IN HEERESGRUPPE POLEN. While destroying Soviet troops would be nice, at the minute I need the freedom to achieve my other two goals. Therefore, I must occupy as many Soviet divisions as possible by forcing them to help their comrades break out. I will try a number of simultaneous encirclements, throw the mobile divisions in the way of retreating Soviets, and hope for the best. If necessary, we can retreat in this sector, but it is to be avoided if possible.

We will review our positions in Mid-September. If the weather holds, we will have time for one more offensive effort before the winter settles in. We are clearly not going to conquer Moscow this year; we have to take what we can hold, dig in, and reinforce and upgrade our forces over the winter. The Soviets are bound to counter-attack in the spring, and I want to be ready when they do.

New players might be intimidated by the long-term planning required in these multi-year wars. Don’t panic! Every few months, pause, re-assess where you are and where you want to be, and ask yourself what the most realistic, achievable target is that will help you enough to make it worth the cost in resources spent. The plans presented above are far from optimal, and good players will find a way to avoid the problems I’ve encountered.

iJGoeYg.png

To keep this war going, we have to mobilise every man not in critical war industries. Our industrial efficiency takes a hit, meaning that we need to use more IC to produce units, but the alternative is being unable to reinforce our divisions. Combined with 18% dissent, my economy is really taking some hits. This event gives us seven million more lives to work with; we can’t afford to waste a single one.

In July, we manage to split off a Soviet corps from the Murmansk sector. Unfortunately, the Soviets are also attacking Suomussalmi, meaning that we have to destroy the pocket before the Soviets take that province, or else they’ll get away.

We also have a pocket on the go in Grodno, but most of the enemy have already escaped. A province which at one point held around thirty divisions now hosts only a handful, but we have bloodied their noses. The few troops in there are destroyed, but what could have been a real step forward is instead just a small victory – too small.

EvGZPNH.png

OM5pdTi.png

One of the problems I keep having is that I’m destroying mostly infantry units; any captured Soviet is a good Soviet, but if the enemy armour keeps getting away they will be able to pile it up and really present me a problem later on.


Two days later, the Soviet troops in trapped in Kestenga surrender, and the balance of power shifts in our favour in the region. It is messy, but by the end of August we will have secured the Kola peninsula.

I9bFSAB.png

I really hope the Soviets don’t actually have 137 corps and that’s just a naming issue, or else the scale of the problem is even greater than I thought!

AQNELDo.png

“The ones that got away…”

August 5th shows us another abortive pocket – I think I probably got too greedy in trying to trap the men in Lutsk and Pinsk. I should have just attacked at Lutsk and surrounded the smaller force in Pinsk and let the rest go. As it is, the whole pocket escapes and I’m left with worthless provinces instead of Soviet prisoners.

878-800x800.jpg

At the minute it feels like the whole Soviet army is made of Steve McQueen clones.

Between August 17th and August 20th, the Kola peninsula is cleared, and we strategically redeploy everything we can spare to Glebojke (gesundheit!).

a5cQJ7N.png

ZgjKQSQ.png

If I didn’t know better, I’d say these Soviet chaps were rather hoping to hold on to Murmansk…

(As an aside, Murmansk is significant because it is the port that the US delivers Lend-Lease through. I believe the US can now no longer send the Soviets aid, which is good news for me. I might be mistaken though – can anyone confirm?)

The last action of the summer takes place on the Polish front, where we squash a column of around 60,000 men. In a war this large, that’s peanuts. Against any other nation the losses I’ve inflicted on the Soviets would be crushing, but the USSR is enormous.


592px-Soviet_Union_-_Russian_SFSR_%281922%29.svg.png

Quite big indeed. Definitely more a long weekend than a day trip sort of business if you want to see it all.

I’ll leave you with my last strategic musing for the moment – in this screenshot my Scandinavian forces are ready to launch an offensive, but where to? If we drive up through Polotsk towards the Baltic Sea we could surround the Balts, but there are relatively few troops in there, and it presents a very long line to hold which the Soviets could snip off. Closing the pocket before winter would be a serious challenge, and I want to remain on a defensive footing after November at the latest.


i84JNb9.png

Decisions, decisions. Does anyone at OKH have a magic 8-ball?


If I swing for Smolensk and Roslavl, attempting a kessel around Vitebsk, I’d only be capturing a small force and I’d risk weakening the defences facing Mogilev. Anything more ambitious would run a huge risk of stalling when the snow arrives, and then the Soviets could easily counter-kessel me like a stack of Russian dolls.

While you think about that, here’s a casualty report. We’ve been fighting the Soviets for about six months and we’ve achieved 4.6 million casualties. I don’t know how that compares to real life, but I suspect it isn’t enough.

iBuYAEl.png

If this carries on much longer I might have to investigate the prospect of deploying Nazi Zombies in the field…
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
123 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.966
3.626
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
From your report it sounds like you need to plan a series of more modest operations, but lots of them, to keep the pressure up.