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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Narwhal

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Most important part is to know how to use Military Control.
Still thinking about those 50K dead Austrians due to a province having 10% MC less than another ? :)
 

loki100

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Nice update, but not much to say. Decisive events should happen in Late May / Early june, though !

it does indeed seem to be heading that way, the earliest that Fred could attack Prag is 3 turns?

Great to see another AAR from yourself and I'm very glad to be following this near to the start before too much has happened. That is to say, I'm very glad to be following this before anything seems to have happened! I have to salute Austria, she knows how to fight a war; do nothing and simply sit about in fields all day. Wonderful stuff.

Joking aside, I continue to be impressed by the complexity and detail in RoP, I remain very tempted to buy the game, both Narwhal and yourself have really shown the game in a good light with your excellent AARs. I am, of course, subscribed!

glad to have you along for the ride ... I know how much you appreciate utter military incompetence and so far the most I've done is to move a single cavalry brigade ... so yes, war Austrian style seems to involve an awful lot of drinking beer and eating Jitnice in Prag (I feel I am channelling Jaroslav Hasek at the moment)

Its a really immersing game, even the Saxony training scenario is quite a challenge and well worth playing over and over again as the Prussians till you win on a regular basis. I keep on saying its very deceptive as it appears you have so few units, but each needs a lot of thought and there is a lot of other stuff going on. Unlike in Paradox games things like reinforcements don't just turn up & so on.

My, look at the size of Nadasy's column... It's so big, and neat and he's in full command of it... Oo-er, missus (and that handlebar 'tache is pretty intimidating, too)! :p

The organization of your forces seems sensible. Do you have enough quantity and quality to stop Freddie at this time? I guess we'll have to wait and see... At least you have the (slight) benefit of letting the Prussians come to you, right?

the moustache is a thing of beauty, I think its actually a sausage which he's keeping as an emergency ration ... Hungarians like sausages and I guess from his name he's Hungarian

Good update.
Frederick should attack at some time. Against AI you can push 2 regions north for a defensive line. 2 corps near the river adjacent to each other to Prevent Frederick crossing a river(AI will rarely flank you,or cut your supply,well Narwhal will :) ). If Frederick decides to march to Kasel or Hannover you can build a depot near Dresden to prepare the siege of Dresden. If he doesnt march Kasel you can distract Frederick by staying idle not attacking. You can then siege and conquer Hannover, Kasel, Minden with French.

At first I was counting man while attacking but then I started to count leaders, they have great impact in battles and better prussian infantry :)( when Prussia played intelligently by human player you will have more of an idea about what I mean) 1 vs 1*5 or 2 casualties is normal against Prussia if not played well.
Narwhal will demonstrate what will happen when idle,cautious Swedish decides to move further to Berlin.:cool:

Also you dont need to move Picolomini separetely against AI. Just combine all Austrian forces and defend/attack Frederick. In first battles be cautious not to lose(Frederick will attack across the river even he will have penalties.But Narwhal wont :) ) If you start to win battles you can be more free,confident to attack.

In the next days and after reading your AAR further I will try to tell differences (from your movements and AI movements on the map) about playing against AI and Narwhal. When played Pbem it is totaly different experience about tactics. Most important part is to know how to use Military Control.

thank you, that perspective would be incredibly useful. My instinct is the game is good fun SP, but with its PBEM approach it really is set up for 2 player, with all the uncertainty that generates.

In general my plan is to attack where Frederick isn't (but, as in the next post, the French are slow to actually arrive), and try to keep an army in being where he is, I reckon I can disrupt a siege of Prag even if I lose a couple of pitched battles.

The continual "Jaws" comparisons have had me chuckling. You need to mod it to play the tune you realise ;)

I can't help but feel that this update was the calm before the storm.

well I'm now hooked on the image - last night I played the next turn and I was humming the theme tune to Jaws as I watched Freddie moving. It also has that feeling of being menaced by something large and dangerous that isn't quite committing itself.

Still thinking about those 50K dead Austrians due to a province having 10% MC less than another ? :)

boys, boys, behave. But yes, since so far I'm on the defense I've not overworried about the mysteries of Military Control except as it influences supply routes.
 

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Its a long way to the Rhine: April 1757

Ok, so winter has gone and the French are active.

So a quick look at that side of things:

There is one quite decent army already on the Rhine, I'll send that to Frankfurt and then worry about what to do when it arrives:



as you can see when you drop the unit on its target, it tells you how long it'll take as well as the route selected.

The rest of the French army is in Paris:



so did a lot of brigade shuffling (both of regiments and between the corps) and dumped a load of cavalry units that are fixed for a while yet into a holding army left in Paris. The rest set off to the Rhine, and should arrive something like early/mid June.

Since I sort of expect the French to do a lot of siege work I've ordered some specialist units to be recruited.

I'm busy ordering up more reinforcements and so on (I'll spare you the details) and found this:



It may well have been something I missed earlier, anyway, sounds like a good idea.

Here's the orders to the main force around Prag. I did this before reading Baris' comments about moving a province forward, but the idea is to seriously contest a river crossing - my guess is a combination of Daun's defensive attributes and the river-malus will help me to kill serious numbers of Prussians ... or not?



I've given Piccolomini less strict orders (apols stuy, if that raises disturbing images)

Anyway, we move to late April:



Winter briefly returns and we see the shark! ... sorry and we see Frederick the Great with a lot of men.

Some events happen (I'll skip all but the most relevant from now on)



and here you see the "Man with the impressive Moustache" moving up, it'll take him 16 days to reach Prag but he'll be there before Freddie in any case.



I've sorted out the Pressburg forces.



About 50% are in a new corps that will end up joining Daun (but will take a while), I'll move Charles up as well (when he wakes from his slumbers) and transfer the units under his direct command to Daun.

That will give Daun the equivalent of 6 corps. These are the 2 now at Prag, plus Piccolomini & the fast arriving Moustache-Man, then the 2 well to the rear at Pressburg. My instinct is to keep 5 of these together as my main force and that the other can do something different (this is not a detailed plan I realise)

And we move to early May:



Freddie lurks on the horizon, it looks like he is pulling the unit at Chemnitz his way and a new force has appeared in the east.

something maybe about to happen ?
 

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something maybe about to happen ?

Something is indeed about to happen! Freddy will wander off once more and the Austrian soldiers will give their livers even more of a workout. Well, that or some battle action. It does seem very tense though, ever unsure of exactly where the Prussian hammer blow will fall on your lines.
 

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*dramatic pause*

Something is indeed about to happen! Freddy will wander off once more and the Austrian soldiers will give their livers even more of a workout. Well, that or some battle action. It does seem very tense though, ever unsure of exactly where the Prussian hammer blow will fall on your lines.

.... and the answer is ...
 

loki100

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Waiting for the action: Early May 1757

Well, for myself, I'd rather Freddie stuck in and actually attacks, the waiting is rather getting to me ...

So I decide to gamble on having a bit of time and set up Daun's 4 corps as Baris suggested.

Picolomini covers Laun:



He'll get there at the end of the turn which may be too late, but then Freddie would have to take a bit of a detour to get there as well.

And the 3 corps at Prag are order to Bodin. At the very least the exercise will be good for them and there may be less breweries and sausage factories there. Note each corps arrives at a slightly different time, in part due to where the artillery (of which I have very little) and supply units are:



Now this raises a game question - do all corps in the same army automatically 'march to the sound of the guns'? which is my guess or is there a special order ... and if so what is it?


In addition to the Charles on his leisurely journey from Pressburg I have a mob of regiments moving up (remember that you need to disperse your recruitment pattern). Here's a good example of how not to do it and how the command malus trashes your speed:



When I detach the regiments hanging around and make them move on their own his arrival time dips from 36 to 12 days. I'll end up allocating this force to the main army.

Anyway, the Swedish front is now notionally active. Up there I have two inert groups of Swedes being menaced by a Hannoverian ...



I know I said I'd skip most how to recruit etc posts but here's another little discovery. For all the powers, esp Russia and Austria, I have mobs of militia repls but few regular inf ... so you can convert militia to something better ... oh and add some Irish regiments to the French army ..



So what happens, you cry ... well

a) some events:


(these show the recruitment decisions I made and how Depot Bns end up feeding into your main army replacement pool - you need to keep on producing them)

b) France ... and the evil Cumberland:



c) up North, the Hannoverians besiege Wismar, the Swedes stay put



and .... wait for it



Freddie lurks on the horizon ... So the Seven Years War had better get a move on or it'll be only a Six Years War?
 
Last edited:

loki100

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The Prussians have a thing about Swedes? Late May 1757

in finishing off the orders for late May, I notice I've run out of money:



well that solve that (for now)

and finally the Rodina puts in an effort. Now I think the little unit pictures are really wonderful so here's a couple of Russian Cossack units



I order them to start imposing Russian control over E Prussia, unfortunately they do have a bit of a tendency to loot ... whoops

Now it looks like the Prussian AI is trying to knock out Sweden and my bits and bobs in the north. I had quite a strong, if unled, force at Rostock



and here you can see they really seem to be trying to overrun the entire region ... not too much I can do



Other events revolve around new generals and new units (note you can double click on a message and it'll take you to the unit in question)



on the Austrian front, freddie has submerged again, but there are still a lot of Prussians on my borders



Here you can see where Freddie went



Now, I'm revising my view of the AI. I can't do much without exposing my army to near certain defeat (split it up or move forward), in the meantime the Prussians are clearing out the threat from the Swedes so that removes one active front and they can then concentrate on the next sector and so on?

Well, my French armies may become very important. They are fairly powerful and no-one is blocking them ... I'm now of the view to grab Wessel first as that both secures the Rhine and opens the door to Hannover:



So the jousting continues ....
 

loki100

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Its not happy to be a Swede: June 1757

So at the start of June, the stand off between the Austrians and Prussians continue.

I'm increasingly tempted to make a move into Saxony, but for a few things.



Firstly 50% of my Generals have fallen back to sleep, second I have quite a lot of reinforcements moving up and third:



this rather scary looking person will apparently awaken next turn. It maybe that I could manage some sort of 2 column incursion if I wait.

Over on the French side



I decide to go for Wesel first, that'll open the door to Hannover later on

and the Swedes, well they are active



and I have quite a large force besieged in Rostock, so decide to send this lot there to drive off the besieging force ... that, as they say, was the plan.

Well they got there too late, the siege ended on turn 2, I arrived on turn 9, so I decided the best solution was to besiege Rostock with a view to getting it back.

Hey ho ...



A much better led Hannoverian force erupted from the fortress (I'd given the Swedes defend orders which helped a bit) and gave me a beating. Since this is the first biggish battle, I had a look at all the clues you get to why. I did well with luck (they had 49 so pretty even), I had favourable terrain, but my oob and command was awful. So I lost, fell back to Stalsrund



and got beaten again, and am now locked up in the fortress. Overall the Prussians have complete control in this region and there is nothing I can do about it.

Well not completely nothing, the Russians are arriving over in the East at last:



and here's a bit of the turn log



at least the Swedish fiasco didn't cost me any national morale.

With hindsight, doing nothing with them and staying at Stalsrund was a better idea. it certainly reinforces the message that not doing anything is often the best option which may influence my plans for the main Saxony front.

Maybe better for Austria to slumber while the French and Russians nibble away at the edges of Prussia?
 

morningSIDEr

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Vexing that you were defeated by the Hannoverians, but it seems clear why; the Hannover commander (unless I am mistaken and I am mixing both sides up) is named Johan. Any game with even the slightest connection to Paradox will always make those named Johan in said game unbeatable! Nonetheless the move towards Wesel seems a good idea, as too does allowing the Russian and French forces to nibble away at Prussia whilst letting your Austrian troops continue their drinking.
 

Stuyvesant

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Firstly 50% of my Generals have fallen back to sleep...
That's what you get when you concentrate multiple Austrian generals within easy horseride of each other: generalized debauchery, drinking and whoring - well, that's my explanation for the rash of inactivations, at least. ;)

Amazing how just a few pixels can turn Herr Saxe-Hildburg's face into that monstrosity. I might have to sleep with the lights on, tonight.

Numbers-wise, your defeats with the Swedes don't look very bad, but if you can't find a way to stop the Prussians, those Swedes will just die from a thousand little cuts.

Regarding your question about the looted provinces in Saxony: did some of your more enterprising Cossacks find their way over there? :p
 

loki100

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Vexing that you were defeated by the Hannoverians, but it seems clear why; the Hannover commander (unless I am mistaken and I am mixing both sides up) is named Johan. Any game with even the slightest connection to Paradox will always make those named Johan in said game unbeatable! Nonetheless the move towards Wesel seems a good idea, as too does allowing the Russian and French forces to nibble away at Prussia whilst letting your Austrian troops continue their drinking.

I'd forgotten that naturally any Paradox related game will be biased towards a Johan ... but as July will make clear, my initial decision was spectacularly dim. Its a really good lesson in one concept embedded in this game, moving its not always a good idea, esp with my generals tendency to fall asleep ... should have titled this aar the 'narcoleptic perspective'. Anyway the Austrians do indeed continue to guard the pubs of Prag.

That's what you get when you concentrate multiple Austrian generals within easy horseride of each other: generalized debauchery, drinking and whoring - well, that's my explanation for the rash of inactivations, at least. ;)

Amazing how just a few pixels can turn Herr Saxe-Hildburg's face into that monstrosity. I might have to sleep with the lights on, tonight.

Numbers-wise, your defeats with the Swedes don't look very bad, but if you can't find a way to stop the Prussians, those Swedes will just die from a thousand little cuts.

Regarding your question about the looted provinces in Saxony: did some of your more enterprising Cossacks find their way over there? :p

Problem is I think that large but inept Swedish army is now utterly done for.

as to the debauched drunken party among Austria's finest ... it rather puts me in mind of a very recently completed aar?

I did check if my cossacks had got a bit enthusiastic but not yet (if I'm not careful I'm going to really muddle up my aars at this rate)
 

loki100

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Vive la France, July 1757

So while the Austrian army basks in the cornfields of Bohemia, more reinforcements arrive and I re-order the infantry brigades. My intention, if at all possible is to make sure that each brigade has one skirmish regiment:



If I ever fight a battle, that little bonus could be quite useful.

Over in the east, the Russians start to arrive in some force. I concentrate on taking out Memel and moving up a corps to screen Kalin(no no Koenigsburg):



You can now see the true mess of my Swedish mis-adventure:



they didn't retreat into Stalsrund (which would have been of some use), nope they are sat in a swamp, and their commander has gone to have a good nap.

So what happens:



Memel gets damaged, the Prussians run away from the glorious French army at Wesel and Danzig stays neutral ... oh and Freddie continues to rotate between Leipzig and Dresden and the Austrian army stays put

Now that I'm in control at Wesel



I send one French corps forward as an advance guard to Koesfeldt, and thus to Munster.

Now at the time I thought this was clever:

I send a second corps to Frankfurt, add some HRE odds and bits, and think I'll raise a new French army, then lunge into Prussia. Now as we'll see my general is meant to have turned up, but I either can't find him or its not enough to make a second army?



Looks like the Prussians are really putting an effort into clearing out the North



on this basis, the AI seems to have a plan, in effect my main force (the Austrians) is neutralised (for various reasons I'm rather unwilling to risk a battle in open terrain with Freddie), they clear out my weakest force and all things being equal neither the Russians nor the French will drive very far into their territory?

Here's the Russian front



as you can see Memel is breached (as in the last set of event logs), and my armies are arriving slowly at and around Koenigratz. I'm using my cossack formations to grab military control around the main zone of operations.

So running the late July turn



This is bad news for a couple of reasons. It supports my view the AI is cleaning up in the North West, and Keith is good. Once he's finished, he could well be a major threat to the French forces.



so my new French general has turned up (but as in the next post, I can't find him), Wesel is mine as is Memel and I've lost Hamburg.



ouch, a reason to be careful around sharp knives



Now this shows that my small but nice gains have yielded me extra morale (& that means if they ever fight a battle my armies will do better), but that thing about Karlskrona is a worry ... not least I need to find out where it is.
 

Narwhal

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Now this raises a game question - do all corps in the same army automatically 'march to the sound of the guns'? which is my guess or is there a special order ... and if so what is it?

All corps in the same army can automatically march "to the sound of the guns". The only condition is that they must NOT be in "inactive" mode (the green mode).
You can make sure your armies move exactly at the same speed by checking the special move whose name I forget with the "two arrows". If the Commander-in-Chief has the icon checked, all units following the same path AND having the icon checked will move with him - so they will go at the speed of the slowest.

Be wary with using this icons - quite often you drag a unit without wanting it, thrasing your battle plans.

but that thing about Karlskrona is a worry ... not least I need to find out where it is.
Karlkrona is the most important Western port of Sweden (the other on the East being Göteborg, not in game - two ports were needed so Sweden doesn't pay the Sund toll). It is on the other side of the sea - the Prussians actually landed in Sweden. First time I see that. Good luck to go help Karlskrona.
 

Roytje

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Interesting AAR loki100. This "No move if unactivated" is going to be a pain in the ***. I used it once, lost an entire column due to lack of suplies and never used it again.
 

Arilou

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Karlkrona is the most important Western port of Sweden (the other on the East being Göteborg, not in game - two ports were needed so Sweden doesn't pay the Sund toll). It is on the other side of the sea - the Prussians actually landed in Sweden. First time I see that. Good luck to go help Karlskrona.

Karlskrona is on the east and Göteborg in the west, alas :p
 

Narwhal

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