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Old June 7th, 2010, 11:12 AM

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Default DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

A small core, fictionalized historic long campaign covering the entire war from the viewpoint of a German Panzer company. The personnel of this company will see action in Poland, France, Balkans, North Africa, Eastern Front, and Western Front.(1)

The core force consists of a reinforced Panzer Kp(2) drawn from the 1939 German 4th army, under Guderian's XIX Motorized Army corp. Specifically the 1st company of II battalion, 5th panzer regiment, 3rd panzer division. In game, this is modeled as a heavily modified Panzer Kp (le) consisting of 2 PzIIIb/d, 1 PzIBef, 5 PzIIc, 10 PzIb, and 4 PzIVb tanks. Attached to this company are a Flak Sp Grp consisting of 2 SdKfz10/4s, an Infantry platoon (security element), 2 Spaehtroop sections (4 teams total), an 8cm GrW platoon, and a transport group of 3 Kfz70s. Additional organic transport is initially considered to be off-board and not present in the core.(3) This company, under Oberstlt Kraft, is being employed as a small 'fire brigade' within the XIX corp during the Sept 1939 offensive versus Poland.

I find that, despite all the hard work done by the OOB designers, modeling early war german forces to be a bit difficult especially when you consider the intended long term growth path of the organization being modeled. Early war german kit is so varied and so poorly documented with often conflicting sources, that it really ends up being an informed best guess compounded by game considerations. Historically it is probably incorrect to be adding the infantry security element at this date, the direct attachment of the flak group is highly questionable, and it is almost undoubtably incorrect to be adding the mortar platoon. Unfortunately, there just isn't sufficient auxiliary purchase points available in some circumstances to buy the elements necessary to have a playable combined arms force without including some of it in the core.

(1) As far as I've been able to discover, no German armored unit saw action on all of these fronts. However it is remotely possible that some personnel may have. The 'plot device' fiction I plan to use is that this company was intended to be part of Operation Barbarosa but at the last minute rerouted to the Balkans. After refit post-Balkans, the company is sent to North Africa and in late 1942 the company's personel (but not equipment) will be rotated out of North Africa and redeployed to the Eastern Front until mid-1944.
(2) Total core cost is just under 1200 points.
(3) The halftracks intended for the company haven't arrived yet, evidently they were rerouted to some other unit with better connections.
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Old June 7th, 2010, 12:03 PM

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Default First battle: Sept 1 1939 North of Chojnide Poland

Forward elements of the 3rd Infantry Division, II Army Corp, encounter an understrength Polish battalion. Oberstlt Krafft is ordered to support an infantry company from the 3rd Inf Div in securing the roads in the area. A 10.5cm battery from 3rd Panzer Division will be available for artillery support. Visibility is clear (50) and HQ allows roughly four hours for the operation (45 turns). The area is dominated by a central hill to the southeast of a road intersection (Map is attached at turn 8).

The plan of battle is for the infantry company to move in from the west along the northern east-west road and secure the intersection. After securing the intersection, the infantry will move south to secure the western approach to the central hill and the woods south of the hill. The panzer company will move along the intersecting road from the south west and support the infantry.

Twenty minutes after the arrival of German forces in the area, Polish artillery begins shelling the area south of the intersection and a troop of Polish armored cars are spotted on the road just north of the intersection. Counterbattery fire is called in to the 10.5cm battery and the PzIII's and IV's of the company open fire on the armored cars and the targets are quickly dispatched.

Soon after the armored cars are eliminated, Polish calvary is spotted on the central hill. The calvary is quickly engaged by long range machinegun fire and a platoon of Pz1b's maneuvers west of the hill to engage. As the calvary is being routed, scouts rounding the hill to the north spot Polish infantry approaching the hill from the east. The second Pz1b platoon circles the hill to the north and engages the infantry.

---more to come.
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  #3  
Old June 7th, 2010, 06:39 PM

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Default First battle continues

Couldn't figure out how to edit the first battle reply/post above so adding as reply.

One hour into the battle, Polish advances along the road and east of the central hill have been repulsed with heavy casualties. The local 75mm guns have fallen silent although at least two batteries further away have begun shelling the central hill.

Oberstlt Krafft has ordered counter battery fire shifted to the suspected gun positions slightly south of the now silent battery and has called for mortar fire upon the approach route east of the northernmost Polish infantry hoping to interdict reinforcement. The PzIIc platoon has been ordered to fall back and form a mobile reserve against the possiblity of a southern flanking maneuver by enemy armor. The PzIb platoon west of the central hill has been ordered north to support the infantry advance in that area. Platoon F, the PzIb's to the northeast of the central hill, remain in position firing upon both enemy infantry advances in turn.

With the support of PzIb platoon E and mortar fire, two infantry platoons continue advancing in the north while the third platoon from the infantry company begins moving to eventually advance south of the central hill. An infantry firefight breaks out just east of the intersection, the combination of machinegun, mortar, and armor support allows the german troops to easily put the polish troops to rout while suffering only light casualties in return.

Enemy shelling erupts around the Panzer company HQ position forcing a hasty relocation but only causing minor damage to the PzBef vehicle. Polish armored cars briefly take possession of the central hilltop but quickly fall prey to the PzIIc autocannon fire of platoon D. Southeast of the hill, a platoon of TKS tankettes erupt from the forest forcing platoon F do withdraw northwestward as the PzIb lacks any antitank capability.

PzIIIb/d's of the HQ section knock out the first two tankettes to advance north of the hill. The two infantry platoons at the intersection solidify their positions as the Polish infantry continues its rout. Meanwhile, the security platoon climbs atop the PzIVb's of G platoon and together with the third infantry platoon begin the swing around the western side of the central hill. Some Polish infantry units managed to sneak onto the central hilltop but were quickly sent into retreat by long range machinegun fire.

Another half-hearted infantry counter attack on the intersection was turned back without casualty, and two more tankettes fell victim to the 37mm guns of the PzIIIb/d's. As a precautionary measure, 10.5cm artillery fire has been called in on the wooded area southeast of the central hill in support of the combined infantry and armor advance around the south side of that hill. Not quite two hours into the battle it appears the Polish opposition has been ineffectual and their remaining presence seems more of an annoyance than a credible threat.

At the two hour mark, a Polish advance on the central hill in company strength was spotted by a scout. However with the area east of the intersection firmly under German control and only light resistance being encountered by the southeastern group, it appears the only organized Polish force left is sticking its head right into the hopper of a meatgrinder.

Two and a half hours into the battle all known Polish forces have either been eliminated or are in full rout. Sporadic shelling continues from two 75mm batteries but other than that it seems the battle is over.

The 10.5cm battery eventually knocked out both 75mm batteries but not before a Pz1b of platoon E was destroyed. Final result: GE 2301 with 16 men and one AFV as casualties; PO 45 with 671 men and 12 AFVs as casualties. Decisive victory for KG Krafft.

Hope this was worth the read. Next battle in day or two hopefully.
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Old June 7th, 2010, 11:23 PM
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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

Ok. Interesting. You can enlarge the image? Is not clear.
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Old June 8th, 2010, 02:59 AM

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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roman View Post
Ok. Interesting. You can enlarge the image? Is not clear.
Save file of beginning of last turn attached, not really setup to do much else than either screenshot or zip of turn.
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Old June 17th, 2010, 11:08 PM
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Default Re: First battle continues

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian61 View Post
Hope this was worth the read.
That it is.

Keep up the good work Brian61.
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Old July 16th, 2010, 09:23 PM

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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

KG Krafft, 4 Sept 1939

Current status: during a brief halt for resupply and repair, some of the Kampfgruppe's missing equipment arrived, consisting of the commander's panzer [a PzKfz IIIb/d(s)] and a half dozen motorcycles [conversion of two Spaehtrupp units to 3xBeiwagenKrad units]. Also at this time, division released a troop of armored cars [3x SdKfz 221s] to be attached to the KG for the remainder of the Fall Weiss operation.

Current orders: KG Krafft is to spearhead the XIX Corp's drive towards the Vistula river. A company of motorized panzergrenadiers from the 3rd PanzerGrenadier Regiment is attached to KG Krafft for the duration of the operation. Artillery support will be provided by division [one of the division's 10.5cm batteries is assumed to be within range of KG Krafft's FEBA during most of the operation].

Situation: On the afternoon of 4 September 1939, KG Krafft encounters a battalion of Polish infantry blocking its path while moving along a secondary road through a lightly wooded area. [Meeting engagement, Visibility 52, length 37] The armored car troop leads the advance along the road followed closely by a platoon of PzIIc's. Motorcycle and motorcycle mounted recon elements are deployed to the north and south of the road respectively, each followed by a platoon of PzIb's. The remainder of KG Krafft is following in march order [all deployed on the westernmost road hex 1,21].

Plan of battle: Search and destroy operation until primary objectives are under control. Concentrated armor will be the primary instrument, engaging only in open terrain. The PzGr Kp will be held in reserve until enemy armor is contained and the first wave of enemy infantry is routed. Thereafter, the PzGr Kp will be deployed to sweep wooded areas as necessary. Artillery will be used primarily for counterbattery fire.

Execution: An unexpectedly large interdictory bombardment upon the road from three 75mm batteries falls amongst the PzIIc's, the platoon leader orders the platoon to accelerate through the targetted area hoping to break into the clear before any of the vehicles are seriously damaged. The trailing elements of KG Krafft leave the road heading southwest. In a fortunate turn of events, a Lufftwaffe observer aircraft attached to XIX Corp spots a gun of one of the 75mm batteries and counter battery fire from a 10.5cm battery at extreme range inflicts minor damage but likely major panic upon the spotted battery.

First contact occurs about fifteen minutes after the artillery bombardment; the armored car troop engaged and routed a calvary unit on the east/west road. The main body continues to move southeast and Obrstlt Krafft orders the Panzer Kp to shift into a move to contact formation with the two PzIb platoons forward. The motorcycle recon elements are ordered to slow their advance and find good observation locations. The infantry recon element, now dismounted, creeps into position on the centermost hill.

Nearly half an hour into the engagement, recon reports a platoon of TP-7s to the far southwest, enemy infantry movement north of the east/west road and enemy infantry southwest of the centermost hill. The armored car troop withdraws south after engaging additional calvary units along the road just as a local 75mm battery and 81mm mortar battery begin shelling their position. The northernmost PzIb platoon is ordered into ambush position along the east/west road to the east of the initial engagement point just beyond the area being shelled. The southernmost PzIb platoon is ordered into position to intercept the central infantry movement, while the PzIIc platoon races to join the command PzIIIb/d(s)'s and the PzIVb's. Oberstlt Krafft orders the PzGr Kp to maneuver into a central position just beyond enemy direct fire/observation range should the situation develop to favor deployment.

Enemy shelling and smoke reduces visibility along the road, spoiling any possibility of a favorable ambush so the northernmost PzIb platoon is ordered southeast in an attempt to catch the central infantry movement in a crossfire. Motorcycle recon elements attempt to maintain visual contact with enemy units while falling back to less exposed positions. The armored car troop breaks contact with enemy calvary and attempts to encircle them in order to spot what troops, if any, are behind them.

As the encounter develops further, the PzGr Kp is ordered to dismount and assume defensive positions in the wooded areas south of the road and east of the central hill. Enemy infantry advances seem to be concentrated in the center and northern regions and additional calvary is spotted to the south. Oberstlt Krafft decides to use his PzIb's and armored cars to deny enemy movement through the open areas while remaining beyond effective antitank rifle range and grenade range. The TP-7's turn northward towards the southern side of the south/central hill, one PzIIc manages to fire a few flank shots at one TP-7 but no damage is observed. The PzIVb platoon races towards the northeastern slope of the southcentral hill hoping to drop off the security force infantry [the only infantry with effective antitank weapons] on the reverse slope. The KG's mortars are moved into firing position for counter battery fire upon the local 75mm battery.

As the armor vs armor battle develops in the south, one TP-7 is destroyed and another immobilized, unfortunately the cost was heavy; Obrgfrtr Hoffmann [PzIIc platoon commander] and his crew were lost to enemy fire and Hptmann Rittenhaus's vehicle sustained serious damage [Pz Kp commander]. Fortunately Hptmann Rittenhaus's PzIIIb/d(s) was still capable of maneuver and withdrew successfully. Elsewhere, enemy infantry is routed by long range machinegun fire along the entire central front and mostly halted south of the road.

Enemy infantry arrived too late to support the TP-7 platoon in the south, only one TP-7 survives. Enemy artillery falls on the truck park, two trucks suffer damage but none destroyed. Dismounted PzGr troops continue advancing in the north against little opposition as the enemy infantry continues to fall before long range machinegun fire. One and a half hours after initial contact, all points of interest are under KG Krafft control and all known enemy units have been rendered combat ineffective. Sporadic enemy artillery fire claims a PzIb with loss of all crew, otherwise casualties have been light.

After a short mop up operation around the southern hill, all armored units are ordered to defensive positions overwatching the approaches to the objective areas while infantry sweeps wooded areas along the roads. Several weak local counter attacks are mounted but no significant threat develops. Sporadic shelling continues to fall for another hour requiring several position shifts but is otherwise ineffective.

The battle ends in a decisive victory, Guderian's drive to the Vistula will not be stopped!

Last turn attached as zip file. Thanks for reading!
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Last edited by Brian61; July 16th, 2010 at 09:39 PM.. Reason: additional info and cleanup of line endings
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Old July 21st, 2010, 04:43 PM

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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

KG Krafft Sept 8, 1939

Current status: Late on the 5th of September, the 3rd Panzer Division was transferred from the Fourth Army to the Third Army to permit the Third Army to begin an attack on Bialystok and Brest Litovsk.

Current orders: KG Krafft, with the support of a Kradshutzen Kp, is ordered to clear the way for the right flank of the advance upon the Bug River. Artillery support, in the form of one 10.5cm battery, will be provided by division.

Situation: Late on the morning of 8 September, 1939, KG Krafft encounters Polish resistance along the intended path of Third Army's advance. The terrain is wooded, broken by numerous small clearings and with a dirt road running along the intended path of advance. [Meeting engagment, Visibility 88, Length 31, shotgun v-hexes]. The armored car troop once again leads the advance along the road, the remainder of the Kampfgruppe is deployed in 'two up' formation south of the road with recon elements preceding Kradshutzen platoons and PzIb platoons operating in close support.

Plan of battle: Develop a fluid battle in the southern areas, denying enemy usage of clearings and hilltops while using maneuver and concentration of force to defeat the enemy in detail. Artillery assets will be used to surpress enemy units in more heavily wooded areas.

Execution: Ten minutes after arrival to the area, the armored car troop engages a calvary squad on the road. The armored car troop halts and over the next five minutes eliminates two more calvary squads and drives another to ground. As the advance continues in the south without contact, action on the road heats up as AT-rifle teams and another calvary platoon arrives. Local light artillery and mortar fire begin falling on the road a few hundred meters behind the trailing armored car. Obrstlt Krafft orders the armored car troop to withdraw to the southwest.

Enemy infantry is spotted advancing in the center and south, the leading kradshutzen platoons are ordered to move into position in the woods west and northwest of the southern infantry advance hoping to force the enemy to remain in the clearings long enough for the PzIb platoons to engage them. As the picture develops, it seems that the enemy is advancing in company strength at three seperate points, north along the road, center, and south. The remainder of the kradshutzen company is deployed in the woods to protect the northern flank from any efforts of the enemy's center column to reinforce the southern.

The best laid plans oft go awry, in this case, the agent of awry-ness is a 40mm AA-gun position which is overwatching the route of advance for the southern infanty. Fortunately it failed to inflict any damage on the targetted PzIb but its presence raises the cost of an armor envelopment too high for the moment. Artillery is called for on the spotted gun but there will still be a serious delay in the intended movement which opens a window of opportunity for enemy artillery. A pair of MG34's are moved into a position for long range fire upon the AAA position in the hopes of supressing it enough to allow operations in the south to continue as planned, albiet with a short delay.

The MG34's of the kradshutzen company's heavy weapons platoon suppress the 40mm AA-gun position enough to allow operations in the south to resume as planned. Enemy infantry in that area is quickly put to rout. Kradshutzen positioned in the woods intercept a number of AT rifle teams and marksmen who attempted to infiltrate. The northern recon elements, in danger of being cut off, are withdrawn to the west under cover of the armored car troop. Artillery fire from an enemy 105mm battery falls on the MG34 positions forcing a quick withdrawal. Fortunately the 40mm AA-gun was suppressed enough to allow direct fire from PzIIc's to be brought to bear without casualty. The withdrawal of the northern recon elements and the southern sweep and clear operation continues.

The central enemy force swings south and a firefight develops along the northern flank forcing committal of the reserves (PzIVb platoon and KG Krafft's security platoon). As the southern operation degrades into the cleanup phase, the southernmost kradshutzen platoon and the PzIIc platoon are withdrawn to form a new reserve. The northern flank stablizes and forces in that area prepare for a northern thrust after the prepatory artillery strike lands. There appears to be some calvary elements which survived to become a low grade threat to the northwest.

The combination of infantry, armor, and artillery soon put the southern flank of the central enemy force to rout, allowing the movement of one of the kradshutzen platoons westward in support of the now northbound sweep and clear force. Another 40mm AA-gun is spotted and destroyed in short order by combined armor and infantry attack though one tank is damaged. One gun of a 75mm battery is put out of action by direct fire of PzIb tanks. Leading elements of the enemy's central infantry continue to advance, forcing the recon elements in that area to withdraw further westward. The reserve force maneuvers to intercept the calvary remnant in that area with overwatch fire provided by the SP 20mm flak section. Artillery fire is walked northwest in an attempt to isolate the remaining elements of the enemy's central force.

The first attempt to encircle the central force is rebuffed by a 37mm AT-gun. Armor is rerouted along a more southerly approach to avoid coming under fire from that position and kradshutzen infantry maneuvers to engage the guns. In an attempt to redress the situation, the reserves are committed in the west with the PzIIc platoon engaging enemy infantry from long range and the kradshutzen platoon replacing the armored car troop in interception of enemy calvary. The FEBA now lies approximately along the north/south line indicated by hex xx,43.

In the east, a kradshutzen platoon supported by the armored car troop hunt down and destroy the remnants of the calvary forces. In the west, a kradshutzen platoon supported by long range machinegun fire destroys the AT-guns, the Polish headquarters, and a number of AAMGs. The northern Polish force turned south to reinforce the center, however as the major portion of the infantry was caught in the open by PzIIc and PzIVb tank fire along with 10.5cm and 81mm mortar artillery, the effort failed. As the battle in the center developed, it became a kill sack bounded by tanks to the east and west and a mix of tanks and infantry in the south with observed artillery falling on concentrations. After the loss of the headquarters, the battle quickly became a rout.

Decisive victory! With its flank secured, Third Army continues its advance to the Bug river.

Beginning of last turn file attached. Thanks for reading!
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 04:39 AM
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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

Nice reading, seems this polish has had a bad day (again).
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Old July 25th, 2010, 07:10 PM

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Default Re: DAR: GE Long campaign - small core

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Originally Posted by a_ver_est View Post
Nice reading, seems this polish has had a bad day (again).
Thanks, and yes the Polish forces haven't done very well, I think I need to increase their purchase points. With this small but highly mobile core force, it seems scattered victory hex games are more challenging than the standard ones.
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