DvD-IT

East vs West developer
33 Badges
Nov 25, 2007
1.043
2
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • 500k Club
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Supreme Ruler 2020
  • Sword of the Stars
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Majesty 2
  • Magicka
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For The Glory
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Deus Vult
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Cities in Motion
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Achtung Panzer
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Magicka: Wizard Wars Founder Wizard
  • 200k Club
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
What's this defeatist spirit? Plan B implies a chance of failure! There shall be no Plan B.

As for the AI aggressiveness, that, AFAIK, only influences the AI willingness to go trigger happy with the declare war button, not the actual conduct of war.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
Tiny pic came to its senses, hurray! All pics are back again. Must've had a ton of backlash.

I play the game literally during updating, so that I could write in all the minute changes that happen between hours. Don't think I'm making this stuff up off the top of my head - I look at the battle screen, analyze the situation, and think of a realistic scenario that may be happening in real life.

Also, I had thought that AI agressiveness did have something to do with their tendency to attack despite odds. At least it seemed so when I first made the move in ARMA and got scared shitless when the french actually attacked me from the Maginot line. But if not, it's a real pity. :(
 

Cybvep

Field Marshal
May 25, 2009
8.465
127
Also, I had thought that AI agressiveness did have something to do with their tendency to attack despite odds. At least it seemed so when I first made the move in ARMA and got scared shitless when the french actually attacked me from the Maginot line. But if not, it's a real pity.
It's a common myth.

Eagerly waiting for the next update.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
24th of June - Daybreak

24th June

The Soviet Union gained another enemy. Finland, not wishing to wait until the soviet forces in the area attacked in suprise, started hostilities against the Soviet Union on the 24th of June.

2s8pf74.jpg

The situation surrounding Suwalki at midnight was slowly inching in the germans favour. The main problem was that despite 3 to 1 superiority in numbers, soviet lack of mobility meant that they could not penetrate deep enough to actually get near the city itself. However, their numbers also meant that the germans would effectively be operating without reserves, despite the presence of the german 14th Panzer Division equipped with largely Pz IIIs, as it was entangled in heavy fighting around the small village of Krasnopol about 40 km east of Suwalki itself.

Battle of Krasnopol

Krasnopol was the first line of defense on the road to Suwalki, and the most easy to defend. The 14th Panzer was dispatched to this area to cover a 14 kilometre long strip of land around the settlement, right after rescuing the 199th Infantry Division hours earlier. It was an obvious Soviet target, and two infantry divisions from the 22nd Corps (2nd Belorussian Front, 10th Army), the 14th and 195th, were sent to take Krasnopol, with the remaining 104th division remaining in reserve. The 22nd Corps had three KV-1 polks attached to it, one for each rifle division, but the quality of the infantry itself was lacking. However, this would turn out to be one of the first large engagements of armour on both sides.

21aejiw.jpg

The battle started with recon units from both sides clashing over the village of Radziuski, but in mere hours time, the attacking soviets established control of the area and achieved their first objective. The German 36th Panzer Regiment, the only panzer regiment in the division, moved to establish control of the main road heading to Krasnopol (and Suwalki) at a vital chokepoint near a small village between Radziuski and Krasnopol. With a lake covering the south and a forest the north (defended by the 14th infantry brigade), the area was reduced into a 4 kilometres wide funnel around the main road, which was the only viable route for armoured forces to strike at Krasnopol. The stage was set.

A few hours after pushing back the recon elements of 36th Panzer, the first russian tanks started approaching the area. Immediately, the german defenders panicked at the invulnerability of the KV-1, and the plan of holding a "bridgehead" over the uncovered fields was shot down immediately. The Pz-IIIs of the 36th could not destroy the KV-1 by any other means than a near point-blank shot to the rear, and despite a few brave crewmen staying hidden to ambush the KV-1 from behind, they had little effect and lost many tanks despite inflicting some casualities. The Panzer Regiment retreated completely and frantically called the HQ in Krasnopol to send the existing 88-mm AA guns to counter the soviet beasts. There was not an abundance of them, however, and only 5 were present at the battle once the 36th Panzer retreated behind the chokepoint.

When the AA guns did arrive in the evening, they were immediately set up behind the empty strech of land, preparing for the KV-1 armada to drop down on them. Almost immediately did a full polk of the tanks emerge from the forest and come all guns blazing towards the german positions. The crews of the 88s did not open fire until the spearhead had reached a small stream in the middle of the field, but the first few shots when the KV-1s were close enough, decimated the first wave of the assault. 15 KV-1s were lost in the field, and the polk retreated to the woods behind them. The blunt charge towards Krasnopol had failed. Despite this, the 14th Panzers Pz-III spearhead took heavy beating and would probably not take part in offensive maneuvers any time soon.

However, at the same time, the infantry of the 14th Rifle Division, under the command of Mj. General Selivanov, together with their supporting KV-1 polk charged into the forests north of the battleground, taking on the defending german 14th Infantry Brigade. Their objective was a small hilltop covering the approach to Krasnopol. Here, the combined offensive of KV-1s and a mass of infantry achieved their objectives, and the defending germans were pushed back towards Krasnopol itself. The sun set with the Red Army controlling one of the positions it needed to attack Krasnopol itself. Then the order came to General Ptuhin, commander of the 22nd Corps, that advancing was no longer the most important priority, it would be delaying the defenders instead. The broad picture involved in keeping the defending germans, especially the lone Panzer division, still for long enough for the massive armoured offensive to cut the germans off and reach Suwalki from where it was the least defended - the north.

German counteroffensive

2mzlk60.jpg

At midnight, the german formations around Lomza and Lublin descended on the 1st Army in Bielsk. The Army was tired and weary from the attack on Suwalki, and had to be disengaged from their offensive immediately to counter the massive german attack over the Bug. Immediately calls for reserves began - the 10th Army's 32nd Corps immediately started their march on Bielsk, but in all likelihood, Bielsk would not be held. This meant that Stavka would have to adopt a different posture in their strategic goals. An attack on the germans southwards might be enough to convince them to call the attack off, but it may very well be punching a brick wall. Still, the 2nd Mechanized Corps was ordered to punch northwest in a days time, in cooperation with the surrounding infantry, to relieve pressure on the centre of the front. Hopefully the 2nd Mechanized would intervene before the germans overcome the marshlands at Bielsk which presented them with more resistance than the tired and suprised soviet troops. Indeed, at sundawn, when it became obvious that the reinforcements would arrive too few, too late, the order for the 1st Army to retreat ws given.

2wn06ds.jpg

2814rhj.jpg

Aerial activity

The Soviet Air Force was pleasantly suprised to operate so freely in the starting days of the war. Having taken part in bombing raids at East Prussia and Suwalki, they had not once been challenged for aerial supremacy so far. On the 24th, however, the first Ju-87s attacked Soviet territory - the target being the garrison in Riga. The bombing was largely uneffective, and to make matters better, the attacking Stukas were intercepted by Soviet LaGG-3s, taking heavy casualites.

28grs7p.jpg

Attack of the 1st Mechanized

An hour after midnight, the 1st Mechanized Corps started advancing southwards towards Suwalki. Konev was just informed of the counterattack at Bielsk, and knew that Suwalki had to be seized with unprecedented speed if this attack was to have any effect. the lightly guarded northern region was quickly overrun, and with massive aerial support promised during daylight, it was do-or-die for Konev and his Army.
 

unmerged(166917)

Dauphinois à la Noix
11 Badges
Sep 18, 2009
3.671
0
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Darkest Hour
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • For The Glory
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • 500k Club
  • Pillars of Eternity
I'm quite surprised by the lack of german fighter cover. It will give you a lot of opportunities in the future.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
Hell these new forums are uggly, though the Deep Ocean skin bears some resemblance with what we had earlier. Just testing how the posts go through so:

The other fronts are essentialy stable. Finland only just enetered the war and I have an easy numerical advantage in Romania, but I won't attack there because firstly there's no strategic gain, secondly I may very well be cut off, thirdly I have no armour/mot there and finally, there's no point anyway. It also looks like my aircraft building strategy may have gone a bit off, I built my air force anticipating a lot more Luftwaffe action, but there's been essentialy none so far.
 

unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Wow, the new look...not sold on it.

The attack stalled, but you're still hanging in there. Good. As for the German airforce, it's probably bombing Osel :p
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
24th of June - The war widens.

The Finnish Front

At 8 o' clock in the morning of the 24th of June, two Soviet Fronts engaged finnish defenders all along the finnish border. Having been raised to battle readiness two days ago, they were sufficiently prepared to strike through the first lines of defense, following Frolov's plan, hoping to reach Helsinki as soon as possible. This time, there would be no weather, no trenches, no terrible coordination to stop them. Despite the seemingly easier situation, the numbers did not favour the soviets very much - in the area there were 34 Soviet divisions against 27 finnish ones. If there was a chance to grasp victory, it would come over many bodies.

hukto2.jpg

The Wehrmacht awakens

Stavka could not help giving all its attention to the situation in Poland, however. Reports came in at the morning of the 24th of a more widescale german offensive over the Bug as well as in East Prussia. The new german offensive could be divided into two main thrusts:

*Offensive into Lithuania in support of the battered troops near Suwalki by Field Marshal Brauchitsch, in conjuction with the first offensive northwards launched on the 22nd.

*Second attempt to cross the Bug near Kowel, where the defending Soviet forces were still reforming from the earlier slaughter, but somewhat offset by Zhukovs counterattack originating from Lviv.

The Lithuanian Offensive.

29oss3m.jpg

It was obvious that Brauchitsch's attack was a direct result of the offensive into Suwalki. German forces there had been taking a heavy beating and had lost an estimated 5% of their total personnel (which, for 10 divisions, would stand at five thousand men minimum). Brauchitsch, by a stroke of luck for the germans, hit directly after the Soviet armoured column set out to cut off the forces in Suwalki. Despite numerical superiority, the situation was rather dire for Konev, as he was presented with yet another dilemma so common for these early days of the war. He could either carry on with the offensive into the rear of the Suwalki defenders, hoping that the 3rd Army, engaged with german troops a bit to the east, could spare resources to also fend off Brauchitsch's attack. Or, he could halt his offensive, let go a superb opportunity to take prisoner a hundred thousand germans and give Brauchitsch a bloody nose instead, as well as securing Lihtuania for a considerable period of time. Of course, as it became increasingly apparent that the Red Army would be stuck in a defending role for the rest of the year, Konev wished to take this risk to alleviate the pains that lay ahead, and as such, ordered the 13th Army's 23rd Corps to completely disengage the germans in Suwalki and act as a delaying element against the approaching german armada.

Luckily for Konev, the german attack into Lithuania was largely unmotorized. The force Brauchitsch brang against the 1st Mechanized Army, 3rd Army and the 23rd Corps (of the 13th Army) was composed of only 13 infantry divisions. Still, given the good timing of the german attack, it was not entirely impossible that Brauchitsch could simply exploit the circumstances well enough for a victory. Nonetheless, during the day, the Soviet mechanized force struck southwards with brute force, not even paying attention to the infantry harassing them from the west. As resistance gradually stiffened thanks to Brauchitsch's reinforcements in the sector, Konev called it a day and prepared plans to make the final strike at Suwalki the dawn of the 25th.

Crossing the Bug

Southwards, the situation was a lot more desperate for the Red Army. The Bug was becoming extremely difficult to hold from the fearsome 9 panzer division panzergruppe (supported by 3 motorized divisions), and Zhukov would have little to say in the matter of things with his northern flank in such danger. And indeed, on the very moment the report of the continued offensive over the Bug reached Meretskov in Stavka, he sent out the order to abort Zhukov's counterattack and rush him northwards to crush the appearing german bridgeheads instead. However, the order would take hours to reach Zhukov - previous moments lost. Orders also went out for the Ukrainian Fronts to permit their few reserve divisions to rush northwest, to fill in the gap at Lviv Zhukov's leaving would create. The Ukrainian front so far had seen no action. Only by 12 o'clock did the orders reach their targets.

dwueeo.jpg

By the time the first tank divisions reached the fight, the germans had already struck deep over the Bug and were fighting in the outskirts of Kowel itself.

Battle of Kowel


o1u9i.jpg

At 20 o'clock, as the sun had set, the soviet 2nd Mechanized Army had their first contacts with the 9 division Panzergruppe. Amongst the first formations to arrive were the T-34s of the 10th Mechanized Corps, who collided head on with the Pz-IIIs at the town of Turzysk. The german spearhead had been heading towards Kowel, and at the time, there were two divisions, one panzer and one motorized, engaged with the soviet 27th Corps defending the city, with another Panzer division south of them trying to cross the river Turja, and the 3rd Totenkopf SS Panzer Division securing the southern flank at Turzysk. The clash between the Totenkopf and the 10th Mech Corps in the night was a monumental struggle where Soviet technology would present itself en masse for the first time.

2dklc2d.jpg

Layout of the opposing forces at 20 o'clock near Kowel

The assault began right after the 3rd SS had cleared out Turzysk and was reforming to carry on the offensive in the coming day. Battered soviet infantry was retreating over the Turja eastwards, while in the north, infantry still held the small river fairly well, thanks to the few existing KV-1s and SU-76 AT platforms. The forward engineers of the 3rd SS were repairing the lightly-damaged bridge in Turzysk, and the few PzIIIs already over the river were caught by suprise by the massive soviet armoured formations descending upon them. Veterans of the battle later called it "Battle of Eternal Daylight" because of how visible everything was at midnight due to the high amount of explosives and flares fired on the battlefield. The T-34s sudden appearance prompted the engineers repairing the bridge to quickly reverse their process, destroying it in an hour and crippling morale alongside it. By midnight, the 10th Mechanized Corps had sent the 3rd SS on a tactical retreat northwards in hopes that the following infantry would arrive with 88's at dawn. The entire german operation was put in jeopardy by the huge Soviet armour presence.

Casualities

After three days of fighting, confirmed reports put Soviet casualities to 24 thousand men irrecoverably lost, 93 trucks, 69 tanks, 58 bombers and 78 fighters lost. Estimated damage inflicted on all fronts (against german, finnish, hungarian and romanian troops) - 20 thousand men, 81 tanks, 158 fighters and 6 bombers.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
Isn't that map beautiful? I found a great site where I can find very high quality polish topographical maps of the 30s. Hell, the unaltered map was 10000 pixels wide. I had to scale it all down to fit the forums, the blanks are artworks.
 

unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Aha, success!

Massed armour does the trick.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
25th of June - Enter the Red Navy

Nearing dawn, German attacks on both Kowel and Alytus ceased - and troops were retreating back to their initial positions. The massive armour presence at Kowel had inflicted grave casualites on the attacking germans, and the Alytus offensive struck the strongly guarded forward flank of the attacking Mechanized Army, leaving the commanders of both attacks with little choice but to retreat to avoid a meatgrinder. Zhukov's 2nd Mechanized quickly followed the retreating Panzergruppe and eliminated german beachheads on the Bug south of Brest. Sporadic attempts to regain those beachheads were repulsed for the whole following day. The situation northwards was not as bright, however. With a formidable german formation marching towards Bielsk, and another sweeping into Lithuania, the first stage of the border battles seemed to be over. The two sides were starting to learn their first few lessons. Namely, the Wehrmacht learned of the massive concentrated armour available to the Soviets and its power in the general strategic plan. The Soviets learned that any offensive maneuver needed to achieve at least a 3 to 1 supremacy in numbers to come even close to success.

The Gulf of Finland


The decision to place the 69th Mountaineer Division into Tallinn was not made on a whim. The division was raised to full battle readiness in a day after the start of the war, and was immediately placed under the command of Marshal Timoshenko, who was leading the charge into southern Finland. Another force under Timoshenkos orders was the Baltic Fleet, led by Admiral Kuznetsov. The fleet was built around the two Gangut-class dreadnoughts of the First World War, named Marat and Oktyabrskaya Revolutsiya (earlier Petropavlovsk and Gangut, respectively). Preparations for an amphibious operation by the 69th began the day the war started, and by the time Finland entered the war, the 69th was in a state of hurried preparedness for their mission.

While the fleet set out on the morning of the 25th, the two battleships, escorted by destroyers and submarines, head quickly northwards to clear the landing area from possible finnish shipping. At 4 o'clock, as the sun rose from the east, the Baltic Fleet spotted the two finnish coastal defence ships, the Väinamöine and lmarinen right off the coast of Finland about 15 kilometres to their west. Despite the perfect weather condition leaving the finnish batteries blinded by the rising sun and the russian ones completely free to engage the silhouettes of the finnish ships who had foolishly ventured outside the protective relief of the coastline, the finnish ships struck first. Both were armed with 254-mm Bofors cannons capable of engaging enemies two dozen kilometres away, and the Väinamöinen aimed just some metres off the Oktyabrskaya Revolutsiya. The russian crews, startled by the accuracy of finnish fire, began to frantically counterfire to little effect. However, though the flagships and the destroyers accompanying them were functioning as target practise for the finnish ships, the supporting submarines and destroyers quickly closed in for their slice of the two ships. The Ilmarinen was quickly struck by light fire from the Soviet Gnevnyi-class destroyers, and had to abandon the Oktyabrskaya Revolutsiya for now to fend off the incoming light ships. A few submarines of the 7th Submarine Flotilla also fired a couple of shots at the Ilmarinen, but missed.


ouoa6u.jpg

A Gnevnyi-class destroyer

This brief pause in fire was all the russian battleships needed. An hour after first contact both Marat and Oktyabrskaya Revolutsiya were firing accurately at the finnish ships, causing the Ilmarinen to break and flee, while the Väinamöinen, after seemingly fending off the Soviet destroyers, tried to find a safe path north through the hell it was subjected to. The finnish naval commander, Major General V. Valve, upon hearing of the engagement, demanded the two large ships immediately dock in Helsinki, ordering the few finnish submarines and gunboats to cover their retreat. However, the sheer range of the Soviet battleships made it very difficult for the finns to retreat. By 6 o'clock, all Soviet surface ships were engaged to the retreating finnish ships in one way or another, and at 6:27, the first major hit was dealt, as the Marat hit the Ilmarinen in the bow, dealing moderate damage and slowing the ship down considerably.

At 10 o'clock, when the two finnish ships were just a few kilometres away from the protective haven of Helsinki (and the coastal guns to deal with the pursuing russians), both ships were badly hit. The Ilmarinen took a second hit to the bow, which resulted in a large hole in the starboard from which water came rushing in. Damage control attempted to fix the ship enough to let it float back into harbour for repairs. The Väinamöinen was hit in the stern, leaving it unable to turn at a satisfactory rate, which was luckily not very necessary for the little bit of sea that was to be covered. By 12 o'clock, both ships finally limped into Helsinki, with massive damage knocking them out of combat for at least a month. The Red Navy had achieved temporary supremacy in the Finnish Gulf. Hopes were that the Kriegsmarine or Luftwaffe would not operate in the area until it was too late for the Finns.

The Finnish Offensive

The attacks into Finland were only partly successful. Despite Frolov repeating his earlier successes with light infantry in the north, Levandovski's 15th Army had severe difficulties in keeping up the momentum against the 5 defending finnish divisions at Mikkeli. Their job was, however, to keep Timoshenko's flank clear, and in that respect, they were slowly fulfilling their objectives, as Timoshenko's personal control over the 7th Army enforced a gradual lurch forward, reaching the outskirts of Kotka by noon of the 25th. Resistance was however stiffening, and the 69th Division was badly needed for the offensive to continue. The plan had in mind an amphibious offensive between Kotka and Helsinki, preparing the ground for the conquest of the capital as well as creating a situation where the finns defending Kotka could be encircled, a bold move by the largely unmotorized force of Timoshenko.

r1d3t0.jpg

Charge at Suwalki

Konev's 1st Mechanized Army finally made significant gains around the dawn of the 25th - the leading armour of the 1st Mechanized Corps, led by General Vassilevskij, scattered the rear guard of Suwalki, the German 526th division, which was now routing westwards. Suwalki, being an important crossing of the Czarna Hańcza river, was now the sole target of Konev. Conquering Suwalki could very well end in the cutting off of a hundred thousand german troops. It was an objective too sweet for Konev to ignore, and he ushered all his troops towards it. Suwalki was also the regrouping and command point of the defending germans, meaning it would be guarded by strong forces, so Konev could only expect very fierce resistance. By midnight, his lead tanks were not more than a dozen kilometres away from Suwalki, setting the stage for the first truly decisive battle of Operation Barbarossa.
 
Last edited:

unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Navy! Always love it. Even when it has a tough time against coastal battleships. And Konev going for the kessel? Awesome.

The plan is working?
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
It all depends. it's a pretty big risk I'm taking - the germans are advancing on the two flanks of Suwalki, but I CAN destroy the troops there if Konev moves fast enough. It's all a matter of how fast Konev can move. Destroying those divisions would go a great way towards stopping the german advance, though, perhaps even so much I won't have to retreat to the Stalin line.
 

quaazi

Colonel
27 Badges
Oct 31, 2009
1.045
0
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Divine Wind
  • 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: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Arsenal of Democracy
26th-27th of June

After a day of rest, the Wehrmacht continued their attacks into Lithuania and Ukraine - and the cities of Alytus and Kowel, respectively. While Kowel was easily safe even from the mighty Panzergruppe looking for a way to cross the Bug with Zhukov's massive tank army pushing them back everywhere, the German thrust into Lithuania was, again, a matter of some discontent to Konev's progress at Suwalki. Even though Brauchitsch could muster only 13 divisions, all infantry, to counterattack the 1st Mechanized Army, it was a big enough threat for Konev to have to send some of his crack tank divisions to deal with them, effectively postponing the thrust at Suwalki yet again. Konev would not yield, however. The defenders of Suwalki, under General Jacob, were exhausted and had suffered very heavy casualites. Konev continued to advance, albeit at a slower pace, aiming to reach the city and capture it regardless of the german presence to his west.

In Finland, the 15th Army seemed to relive the Winter War yet again. Their thrust towards Mikkeli was halted, then the 9 divisions were routed back, knocking them out of service for a while. And again did that suicide attack buy valuable time for the troops to the south - finnish troops north of Timoshenko's strike at Helsinki were now essentialy powerless to intervene in the Soviet offensive. Despite fulfilling the minimal operational goals, Levandovski was in deep trouble as Stalin requested his presence at the Kreml, as he had not a single successful operation to show during his tenure as the Commander of 15th Army. And indeed, the man was a truly average general, uncreative and rigid, although with a strong sense of duty and commitment. Still, those traits wouldn't save him - he was removed from command of the 15th Army, and replaced with General Maslennikov, who previously commanded a division in the 2nd Ukrainian Front. However, he would need a week to get settled in.

bey52g.jpg

At 11 o'clock, the Soviet amphibious landing at Kotka began. The 69th Mountaineer Division landed directly west of the town, with little resistance from the finnish police who was reduced to guarding the rear of the streched formations. In two hours, the 69th division had occupied most of Kotka, and had engaged the rear guard of the Finnish 6th division, which had so far been kept relatively intact. The finns were caught by complete suprise, however, and it seemed little they could do would repel the two invading forces, especially with the frontline holding together barely as it was, with the specialist 7th Division, all veterans of the Winter War, being the only ones to offer significant resistance to Timoshenko's advance. It seemed like Timoshenko was going to succeed. And finally, at 16:00, reports came in that the finnish divisions in the north were in full retreat. Frolov managed to reenact his success of the Winter War, and resistance at Kotka and Helsinki would do little but delay the inevitable.

2nj9fo1.jpg

As night crept closer, Konev's troops reached the first buildings of Suwalki. The arrival was perfectly coordinated by the attacking 13th and 10th Armies, who, despite having been engaged in days of brutal combat, charged at the enemy troops defending in the eastmost areas. With half their troops already near rout, Jacob had little to do but hold on and hope that he would be rescued at some point. And it was not that bizarre of a thought, actually, with the two spearheads of the Wehrmacht rushing eastwards north and south of the battlezone. Such hopes were of little use against KV-1s, however.

20aevio.jpg

By midnight, the finns cracked. The few men still present could no longer stop the Red Army from advancing towards Helsinki, and a general retreat was ordered before Timoshenko could link up with the 69th and cut off the defenders. The finns were ready to negotiate, as at daybreak, Helsinki was declared an open city. In contrast with the long and painful Winter War, it had taken mere days to crush the finnish defenders in 1941.


otmcf9.jpg

Southwards, things were starting to heat up. At noon of the 27th, the first divisions started routing at Kowel, as Manstein was slowly corssing the Bug and pushing forward. Situation at Konev's rear was getting bad as well - the infantry defending Alytus (and the flank of Konev's thrust) were near breaking, and if any results in Suwalki were wished, they'd have to achieved before the end of June. In Suwalki, Konev was nearly finished with occupying the town, and the german infantry was utterly disorganized save for a few troublespots. However, the 14th Panzer was still holding out despite earlier losses against KV-1s at Krasnopol. Konev still couldn't know if his gamble would pay off, as the situation could go either way...

... until dusk settled. A last-ditch counterattack from the 14th Panzer had been keeping Konev busy for the day, and now, it was becoming clear that the battered infantry was trying to espace further to the south. Konev had won the battle, yet it was not yet clear what fruits did the victory bring. The first night during which he could get some sleep was now at hand.
 

unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Wow!

Finland, already finished. What's the surrender conditions?

Well done Konev...hopefully you can exploit that victory.
 

unmerged(166917)

Dauphinois à la Noix
11 Badges
Sep 18, 2009
3.671
0
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Darkest Hour
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • For The Glory
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • 500k Club
  • Pillars of Eternity
Great news, you will soon have some spare divisions for new operations against the Germans !