The General Staff Archives

Europa Games and Military History

Month: November 2015

Apr I 41 Axis Turn

Mainland Europe off-map holding box [end of turn]:
2.5 Italian inf replacement points [The Axis player begins the turn with 3 It inf RPs and gets .5 It inf RPs as reinforcement. In the I. Phase one It inf RP is used to build the 0-6 Cons III 10A, which is successfully sea transported to Libya in the M. Phase via an Axis Med/NA NTP]
2 Ger ARPs [ER-II at start; no builds this turn]

In Sicily [end of turn]:
Licata (18A:0102) [point city/minor port]:
3-cap permanent airfield
SM 79-1 2B3 1-5/22 [inop., strat bombed Malta Status; Hit; began turn here]

Coast hex 18A:0403:
3-cap permanent airfield
Ca 309 2B1 1/L/9 [inop., tac bombed Malta Status; returned by flack; began turn here]

Coast hex 18A:0603:
3-cap permanent airfield
MC 200 3F4 1/8 [inop., tac bombed Malta Status; Miss; began turn here.  Note that this air unit did a non-phasing air transfer to here in the previous Apr I 41 Allied E. Phase]

Syracusa (18A:0702) [reference city/minor port]:
3-cap permanent airfield

Augusta (18A:0701) [point city/minor port]:
3-cap permanent airfield

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Axis beginning of Initial Phase dispositions: inoperative Axis air units performed Malta Status bombings the prior Axis turn

Apr I 41 Axis beginning of Initial Phase dispositions: inoperative Axis air units performed Malta Status bombings the prior Axis turn

Malta Status:
At the beginning of Axis player turn: 10
At the beginning of the Movement Phase: 10, + 1 for Malta Status hit early in the M. Phase = 11 at the beginning of the Axis Naval Movement Step and at the EOT.

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Axis end of I. Phase dispositions: after the LW air unit w/drawals; Me109E air unit reinf. is in the M. Europe off-map holding box

Apr I 41 Axis end of Initial Phase dispositions

In Libya [end of turn]:
Tripolitania Garrison Box:
0-1-6* Inf III 280 GaF
0-1-6* Inf III 290 GaF
0-1-6* Inf III 340 GaF
0-1-6* Inf III 350 GaF
0-2-6* Inf III 330 GaF

Tripoli (18A:0121) [clear terrain dot city/major port transportation line junction coast hex]:
Axis Supply Terminal marker
fort marker
2 steps of attack supply [both are turn reinf steps of attack supply; both are successful sea transport arrivals; both remain here at the end of the Axis turn]
1 resource point [never moved]
0 pos flk unit AA=3 [Italian]

18A:0122 [Castel Benito; clear terrain secondary rail line hex; S of Tripoli]:
3-cap permanent airfield

Homs (18A:0522) [rough terrain point city/minor port road junction coast hex]:
1 step of attack supply [never moved]

18A:0923 [clear terrain road hex]:
1 step of attack supply [never moved]

Misurata (18A:1022) [clear terrain point coast road hex]:
1-cap temporary airfield

18A:1627 [clear terrain coast road hex; W of Sirte]:
3-6 Inf XX 55 Sav [began at 18A:0923; admin moved 12 hexes along coast road to here]

Sirte (18A:1727) [clear terrain point city coast road hex]:
fort marker [completed in the Mar II 41 Axis initial phase]
3-cap permanent airfield [enlarged in Mar II 41 Axis M. Phase by the It cons III 5A]
1 resource point [never moved]

18A:2227 [sand coast road hex]:
10 Pz XX HQ 15 (Ger) [end of E. Phase; turn reinf]
3-10 Mot Inf III 104 (Ger) [end of E. Phase; turn reinf]
Both these turn reinforcements are successfully sea transported from the Mainland Europe off-map holding box to Homs; then they both admin moved 12 hexes along the coast road to hex 18A:1226—Buerat el Husn; later they both exploited to 2227.

18A:2730 [Arco dei Feline; clear terrain coast road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield

El Agheila (18A:2930) [clear terrain point city coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip
3-4-6 Art III 5 A [began at Sirte; admin moved 12 hexes along coast road to here]
1-6 Hv AA II 29 [began at Sirte; admin moved 12 hexes along coast road to here]

18A:3129 [clear terrain coast road hex];
0-6 Cons III 5 A [began at 18A:1927; admin moved 12 hexes along coast road to here]

18A:3328 [clear terrain road hex, S of Agedabia]:
4 pos flk AA=1 [Italian; began at 18A:2529; admin moved 8 hexes along coast road to here]

Agedabia (18A:3327) [clear terrain point city road junction hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip
1-6* Inf III A [brkdwn of 3-6 Inf XX 25 Bol at the beginning of the M. Phase; began @ 18A:2730; admin moved 7 hexes to here]
one step of attack supply [spent 7 SMPs moving along road from 18A:2730 to here in E. Phase]

18A:3528 [clear terrain road hex to Oasi di Gialo]:
1-6* Inf III A [brkdwn of 3-6 Inf XX 25 Bol at the beginning of the M. Phase; began @ 18A:2730; admin moved 9 hexes to here]

18A:3425 [clear terrain road to Zaulet Msus hex]:
3-6 Inf XX 27 Brs [began at 189A:2829; admin moved 8 hexes along coast road to here]

18A:3223 [clear terrain road hex to Bengasi; S of Soluch];
2-3-6 Art III 24 C [began at 18A:2730; admin moved 11 hexes along coast road to here]

Soluch (18A:3222) [clear terrain point city secondary rail terminus hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
1-8* Inf III 61 [began at 18A:2730; admin moved 16 hexes along transportation lines to here]

Bengasi (18A:3121) [clear terrain reference city/major port transportation line nexus coast hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
12 hits on the port
0-6 Lt AA II AA=1 36 [It turn reinf; successfully sea transported from M. Europe holding box; amph landed @ 18A:3122 w/out disruption, then moved into the adjacent Bengasi hex]
0-6 Cons III 10A [It RP build this turn; successfully sea transported from M. Europe holding box using one Axis Med/NA NTP; amph. landed @ 18A:3122 w/ out disruption, then moved into the adjacent Bengasi hex]
one step of attack supply [began at Slouch; captured on Mar II 41 Axis E. Phase; spends 2 SMPs moving to here along transportation line in E. Phase]

18A:3320 [rough terrain secondary rail line hex]:
1-8* Inf III 62 [began at 18A:2730; admin moved 16 hexes along transportation lines to here]

Zaulet Msus (18A:3523) [stony desert point city road hex]:
3-6 Inf XX 17 Pav [began at 18A:2730; admin moved 12 hexes along road to here]

18A:3617 [rough terrain road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
CR 42 3F3 0/9 [inop., air transferred to here from Agedabia in E. Phase]
G 50 3F3 0/9 [inop., air transferred to here from 18A:0403, in Sicily, in E. Phase]
Br 20M 3NB4 2-5/24 [inop., air transferred to here from Tripoli in E. Phase]

18A:3618 [Maraua; rough terrain road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
CR 42 3F3 0/9 [inop.; air transferred to here from El Ageheila in E. Phase]

18A:3719 [stony desert hex; SE of Maraua airfield]:
1-8 Mot Art III 2 AC [began turn at 18A:3427; admin moved 16 hexes along road to 18A:3816; exploited to here]

18A:3917 [rough terrain road to Derna hex]:
1-8 Mot Art III 3 AC [began turn at 18A:3426; admin moved 15 hexes along road to 18A:4317; exploited to here]

18A:3721 [stony desert hex]:
1-8 Mot Art III 1 AC [began turn at 18A:3324; regular moved to 18A:3920; exploited to here]

18A:3921 [stony desert road to Mechili hex]:
3-2-8 Art III 16C [began at 18A:2730; admin moved 16 hexes along road to here]
1-10 Mot AT II 605 (Ger) [began at 18A:3425; moved to 18A:4119; exploited to here]

Derna (18A:4116) [rough terrain point city/minor port coastal cliffs road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
2-10* Mot Inf III 7 B
Began at 18A:3223; regular moved 10 hexes from there to 3717, gaining road hex control, using “northern” route through Jebel Akhbar rough terrain zone. It captured Barce hex and the 3-cap permanent airfield at 18A:3617.
Me 109E 7F5 1/7 (Ger LW) [reinf; inop.; air transferred from the M. Europe holding box in the E. Phase]
Ju 87B 2D3 4-1/8 (Ger LW) [inop.; air transferred from Soluch in the E. Phase]
Ju 87B 2D3 4-1/8 (Ger LW) [inop.; air transferred from the 3-cap permanent air field @ 18A:2730 in the E. Phase]

El Mechili (18A:4019) [point city stony desert road hex]:
5-8 Lt Arm XX 132 Ar [The lt arm XX’s supported components assembled here at the end of the E. Phase.]
2-1-8* Lt Arm III 32 [began at 18A:3424; regular moved to Mechili (18A:4019) in M. Phase; assembled here in E. Phase]
2-10* Mot Inf III 8 B [began at 18A:3423; regular moved to 18A:4318 in M. Phase; exploited to Mechili in the E. Phase]

18A:4318 [stony desert road hex]:
8-7-10* Px XX 5 Le (Ger) [The Ger pz XX’s unsupported components assembled here at the end of the E. Phase.]
10* Pz HQ 5 Le (Ger) [began at Slouch (18A:3222); regular moved to 18A:3816 in the M. Phase; moved to 4318 in the E. Phase]
5-3-10 Pz III 5 (Ger) [began at Slouch; regular moved to 18A:3816 in the M. Phase; moved to 4318 in the E. Phase]
1-10 Mot MG II 2 (Ger) [began at 18A:3423; moved to 18A:4417 in the M. Phase; moved to 4318 in the E. Phase]
1-10 Mot MG II 8 (Ger) [began at 18A:3223; admin moved to 18A:3916 in the M. Phase; moved to 4318 in the E. Phase]
1-10 Mot Hv AA II II/33 (Ger LW) [began turn at Soluch; admin moved to 18A:3916 in the M. Phase; moved to here in E. Phase]
one step of attack supply [began at Agedabia; in the E. Phase spent 14 SMPs moving to here along the road]

ME/ER-II Apr I 41 Axis end of M. Phase dispositions

Apr I 41 Axis end of M. Phase dispositions

On Scarpanto:
Scarpanto (19A:0701): [rough terrain minor port point city hex]
3-cap permanent airfield

At Rodi:
Rodi (20A:2230): [clear terrain major port point city coast hex]
3-cap-permanent airfield

20A:2331: [rough terrain coast hex]
3-cap permanent airfield

ME/ER-II Apr I 41 beginning of M. Phase air attack against Malta Status, prior to naval movement segment

Air attack against Malta Status, prior to naval movement segment

In pro-Axis coup Iraq [end of turn]:
Per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft rules, the pro-Axis Iraqi Coup “automatically” occurs in the Apr I 41 Axis Initial Phase. Per WW Rule 38J4-[Iraqi] Coup, the Axis player may not move the Iraqi forces this turn.
The Iraqi rail cap is 5.  The Iraqi supply terminal is Baghdad (22A:2825). [per the WitD Neutral Nations OB booklet, p. 2]
In playing the WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario it is currently recommended to use WW Optional Rule 38J7-Iraqi Armor, giving the Iraqi lt arm X neutral AECA/AECD instead of full AECA/half AECD.

Pro-Axis Iraqi coup forces: initial dispositions:
Kirkuk (21A:3904) [dot city transportation line junction hex]:
1-6* Inf XX 2

Baghdad (22A:2825) [clear terrain partial city transportation line nexus hex]:
1-2-6 Inf XX 3
1-6* Inf XX 1
1-0-8 Lt Arm X 1
Mxd 1A2 1/8

Diwaniya (22A:3623) [canal intensive reference city secondary rail line hex]:
0-1-6* Inf XX 4

Rutbah (21A:5023) [stony desert point city road junction hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip [per the WitD Neutral Nations OB booklet, p. 2]
0-1-8 Inf II Fawzi (Bandit) [Guerrilla-Capable Unit; began turn at 21A:4717 (H-1 Pump Station); regular moved to here]

Bandit Fawzi al Qawukji :
WW Optional Rule 39E4-Fawzi al Qawukji action die roll: 5; Fawzi is under control of the Axis player for the player turn.
It is currently assumed here that after the Iraqi Coup the national territory in the pro-Axis neutral Iraq is still not 100% Axis “friendly-owned” for the purposes of Rule 39D3-Changing Modes.  Perhaps this occurs after a pro-Axis coup Iraq “join[s] the Axis,” per Rule 38J4 [Iraq] Coup.  I’m also currently thinking the Fawsi unit cannot, in any mode, admin move in Iraq (or in Vichy Levant, in any case) until Iraq at least “joins the Axis.”
The Axis player keeps the Fawzi unit in Combat Mode and in the M. Phase regular moves it 8 hexes SW down the road from 21A:4717 (H-1 Pump Station) to the Rutbah hex (21A:5023), where it ends its move.

Neutral Vichy Levant in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario on the Apr I 41 Axis turn:
Per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB the Axis may try to gain entry into the Levant starting in the Initial Phase of this Axis turn.  This coincides with the bullet text indicated in the WitD Axis OB for the Apr I 41 Axis turn, which is used as a basis for the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Axis OB.  This is certainly because in both our 1941 WW ME-based Scenario and in the older WitD Rules/Axis OB it is explicit that on the Apr I 41 Axis turn the “historical situation” occurs in the Balkans, eg., clear weather, German intervention, and thus Operations 25 and Marita.  But this turn in the EA reported war game the Axis player opts not to roll the dice using the Vichy Levant Table, found on WW Game Play Chart 8.  More below on why.

Axis Considerations in the Near East beginning on the Apr I 41 Axis turn

First, we establish the following Scenario turn chronology for the second quarter of 1941 regarding pertinent historical developments occurring in that part of the Balkans not in play in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario that are essentially embedded in the WW Rules as written and related to Near East WWII strategy of that time period:

Per Rule 38V3a-Axis Privileges [in the Levant] “Germany intervenes in the Balkans…[on the] Apr I 41 [game turn] if the Southeast Command is not under Axis control….”  On this turn in the standard WW ME Scenario the Axis player may begin using the Vichy Levant Table found of WW Game Play Chart 8 and try to gain special privileges in the Levant, if he has not violated the neutrality of any Vichy region.

Per Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq we see that “Athenai is considered to be Axis-owned … on …  [the] Apr II 41 [Axis turn, presumably in the Movement Phase].”  Therefore in our Scenario, per (new) Optional Rule 23J-Axis Air Ops from Aegean Islands (found in the Wavell’s War Errata-28 October 2005) Axis air units based on the Axis air fields at Scarpanto or Rodi are released from the supply restrictions of Rule 23I-Out-of-Supply Airbases beginning on the May I 41 Axis turn.

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Axis EOT dispositions: Libya and Sicily

Apr I 41 Axis EOT dispositions: Libya and Sicily

Assuming the use of Optional Rule 38J6 in the EA reported scenario, we use the Optional Axis Near East Forces Axis OB found on pp. 27-28 of the WW OB booklet.  We see that very likely in our 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario war game, Coup Turn 3 = the May I 41 Axis turn, Coup Turn 4 = the May II Axis turn, Coup Turn 6 = the June II Axis turn, and so on.

Per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft Rules and OBs, the added-on Assault on Crete segment definitely begins on the May II 41 Allied turn, using essentially the forces found in the Axis and Allied OBs for the WW Assault of Crete Scenario (along with some additions) found in the WW OB booklet.  The Assault on Crete segment continues until the Axis player ceases operations in the Balkans per, Rule 3E5.

Per Rule 12C2a-Unrestricted Full Supply Sources, we see that in our Scenario, where we have an added-on Assault on Crete segment, “each Axis-owned port in the South Aegean Islands [becomes an] … Axis unrestricted full supply source [eg., may then generate up to 4 gsp’s in an Axis Initial Phase] … after the Axis player ceases operations in the Balkans (Rule 3E5).”
Per Rule 31D1-[Allied Anti-Shipping Forces:] Eastern Mediterranean, we see that in our Scenario “the Axis player may not use naval transport anywhere in the Eastern Mediterranean unless all hexes in Crete … are Axis-owned.”

To be sure, in our Scenario where we have an Axis Assault on Crete segment, WW Rule 3E5b-Voluntary Cessation of Operations in the Balkans says that “the Axis player may cease operations in the Balkans at the start of any Axis initial phase in which … no South Aegean Island has both Axis and Allied units present.”  But more below on this.

Finally, since our Scenario is based on the WW Middle East Campaign (Rule 41B5), it is possible in some circumstances to implement Rule 38T2-[Turkish] Participation (Limited Intervention).
It appears that at least in WW ME-based Scenarios, the Allied player may invade the neutral Vichy French Levant at any time.  Following an Allied invasion of a neutral Vichy French Levant, per the provisions of Rules 38Va & b-Allied Invasion, the Axis player is restricted in any force intervention into the French colony, meaning that although the Axis player subsequently gains control of the Vichy forces in the Levant after an Allied invasion, “… the Axis player may not operate any non-Vichy Axis forces in the Levant except as allowed by the Vichy Levant Table.”

ME/ER- 11 Apr I 41 Axis EOT dispositions: Syria & Iraq; Fawzi unit move to Rutbah hex

Apr I 41: Fawzi moves to Rutbah

WW Optional Rule 38V3f-Variable Levant Surrender to Allies is recommended for use in the new Scenario, which calls for the use of the Variable Levant Surrender Table, found on Game Play Chart 5.  This Optional Rule and the Variable Levant Surrender Table applies only to the surrender of the Levant to the Allies.  In the new Scenario the following + dice roll Modifier is added:  +1 for every 5 Allied-owned Levant cities except for Beyrouth, Damas, and Alep, for a possible total of 3.
Pending the final text of the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario rules, for the EA demonstration the following provisional ad hoc stipulation is added to WW Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq:

Axis Intervention in Iraq may occur only after the Iraqi Coup, which in the new Scenario “automatically” occurs on the Apr I 41 Axis turn Initial Phase.  However, the Axis player must always announce the Axis intervention in Iraq only in conjunction with an Axis pressure of Vichy France to grant Axis Privileges in the Levant (see Rule 38V3), which per the WW Master Sequence of Play Summary occurs prior to the mandatory check for an Iraqi coup.  Therefore (in the new Scenario) the earliest the Axis player may declare an Axis intervention in Iraq, per Optional Rule 38J6, is in the Apr II 41 Axis Initial Phase.  Once the Optional Rule 38J6 Axis intervention in Iraq is announced in the Axis Initial Phase, the optional Near East Axis forces are activated, and the first are available on Iraqi Coup Turn 3: in the May I 41 Axis Initial Phase, at the earliest.

The purpose of this admittedly technical procedural stipulation is to make absolutely sure the Levant Status proviso is in effect, allowing the Allied player to subsequently invade the Levant, in the case of Axis intervention in Iraq exclusively per Optional Rule 38J6.  Per the same Levant Status proviso the Levant is also accordingly made a “part of the Allied Middle East Command”, which is good for the Allied player.  Now, in our EA game reporting situation, when the Axis player will likely declare for Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq in the Apr II 41 Axis Initial Phase, he may or may not do this along with a dice roll on the Vichy Levant Table, which could certainly stimulate additional Axis force availability in the Near East coming from the Axis Med/NA Command’s forces found in the WitD Axis OB booklet.  There are good intentions here that eventually all these various procedural nuances broached here will be integrated into a comprehensive, focused, streamlined, and updated revision of  Rule 38V3-Axis Privileges [in the Levant] and Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq, to be done for the new Scenario.

Per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario’s Axis draft OB, beginning on Iraqi Coup Turn 4: in the May II 41 Axis Initial Phase, at the standard port/3-cap permanent air field hex of Rodi (20A:2230), the Axis player receives as a reinforcement one gsp, along with the Ju 52 T type air unit reinforcement called for in the Optional Axis Near East Forces Axis OB found in the WW OB booklet.  For now it is assumed this gsp was successfully sea transported to Rodi at the beginning of the Movement Phase, and therefore was generated in the same May II 41 Axis Initial Phase.  Then the Axis player continues to receive one gsp at the port hex of Rodi in each following Axis initial phase in the same manner until the Axis either ceases operations in the Balkans per Rule 3E5b, thereby kicking in Rule 12C2a, or the Axis player voluntarily withdraws from the Near East the Axis intervention in Iraq air units, per Optional Rule 38J6, whichever comes first.  For those who wish a source for the possibility of a single gsp at Rodi at the admittedly relatively early date of the May II 41 Axis Initial Phase, see The Mediterranean and the Middle East, Vol. 2, “The Germans Come to the Help of their Ally” (1941) by Playfair; 1956; p. 196.

Finally, in the new 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft Rules, when and if we get to the May II 41 game turn in the EA postings, at Rule 3E5b-Voluntary Cessation of Operations in the Balkans, the first sentence may be amended to read “…the Axis player may cease operations in the Balkans at the start of any Axis initial phase … [when] … no South Aegean Island [eg., on Crete, in our case] has both Axis and British units present.”  Here “British” units has been substituted for “Allied” units; this is “British” in terms of British Empire national forces per Rule 3b2-Allied [Side].  This means that if there are still only one or more of the three Greek static IIIs alone remaining on Crete, it is assumed under the circumstances they have surrendered in the meantime, seeing that the original British Creteforce is no more.

Comments, constructive criticisms, and new ideas are of course welcome; that is the point of all the above.  In a big Europa war game project like the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario one person can’t do everything and come up with a superior product; but he can start it.

Med/NA Replacement Pool
1 x 2-6 Inf XX 60 Sbr
1 x 2-10 Mot Inf III 10 B
1 x 2-1-8 Lt Tnk III 3
2 x 1-8 Lt Tnk X 1,2
5 x 1-6 Tnk II 1, 3, 5, 6, 21
1 x Para Inf III Tonini
3 x 0-1-6* Inf III 300 GaF, 310 GaF, 320 GaF
1 x 3-4-6 Art III 24 dM
3 x 2-3-6 Art III 10 C, 20 C, 21 C
1 x 1-6 Art III 23 C
4 x 0 pos flk unit AA=1 [Italian]
Med/NA aborted air units box:
1 x SM 79-1 2B3 1-5/22
1 x CR 42 3F3 0/9
Med/NA eliminated air units box:
1 x SM 79-1 2B3 1-5/22

Turn Activity

Per the WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario rules the Iraqi coup automatically occurs in the Apr I 41 Axis Initial Phase, after the supply determination segment.
Axis Replacement Point inventory at end of the Apr I 41 Axis initial phase: German: 2 ARPs, Italian: 2.5 inf RPs.

The Axis spends 1 It inf RP to rebuild 0-6 Cons III 10A; the Axis gets .5 It inf RPs as reinf.
The Axis player receives two steps of attack supply as turn reinforcements.  In the M. Phase these two steps of attack supply are successfully sea transported across the central Mediterranean to Tripoli, in Libya, where they remain at the end of the Axis turn.

Axis uses one Med/NA NTP to sea transport 0-6 Cons III 10A to clear terrain coast hex 18A:3122, adjacent to Bengasi. Here the unit makes an amphibious landing without disruption. In this same coastal hex the Axis also amphibious lands the 0-6 Lt AA II 36 turn reinforcement, using Axis turn reinf sea transport. This ground unit also lands without disruption.

 

Commentary

This turn in the Initial Phase the big LW air unit withdrawals are done for the giant German intervention into the off-map Balkans.  So imagine this:  a combination of the 1941 ME/ER-II Scenario with the WW Marita-Merkur (M-M) Scenario would make for the creation of a giant rip-snorter 1941 ME/ER-II/M-M Scenario.  Whew!

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario: Eastern Libya detail

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario: Eastern Libya detail

Meanwhile, back on our game board, we see that the Axis player has made some strategic choices with the now reduced Axis air units.  This turn the Axis has kept the Italian BR 20M NB type and both remaining German LW Ju 87B D type air units in the Cyrenaica rather than positioning them on map 18A in order to do Malta Status air mission attacks the next Axis turn.  Other Rommels might play this Europa turn differently, at least with the Axis air assets.  What do you think?  Also, what about the forward panzer spearhead at hex 18A:4318; is it too far forward and vulnerable, or is it a bit cautious?  What would Rommel do?

ME/ER-II Scenario Apr I 41 Axis EOT off-map display detail

Apr I 41 Axis EOT off-map display detail

ME/ER-II Apr I 41 Axis EOT off-map display detail

Apr I 41 Axis EOT off-map display detail

Apr I 41 Allied Turn

Malta [end of turn]:
Malta Status: 10, at the end of turn [at turn’s start 11 (for 1 hit on Mar II 41 Axis Turn) – 1 repair this turn = 10]
Malta Repair Rate: 1 repair point each turn.
Valletta hex flack factor (intrinsic + hv AA II):  5
Valletta (18A:0407):
3-cap permanent airfield
3-6* Inf X 1 M
2-6* Inf X 2 M
1-8 MG II 2 Ch
0-1-8 Hv AA II AA=2 10
0-4 Cons X MC
4 gsp’s generated on the Apr I 41 Allied turn initial phase. [from Gibraltar, using a W Med NTP]
Note: All units are technically Allied U-2, but are in special general supply due to the gsp’s.

WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Allied end of Movement Phase dispositions: eastern Libya & Egypt

Allied end of Movement Phase dispositions: eastern Libya & Egypt

In Libya [end of turn]:
All indicated hexes are Allied owned.
Bengasi (18A:3121) [clear terrain reference city/major port transportation line nexus coast hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
12 hits on the port

18A:3617: [rough terrain road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield

18A:3618: [Maraua; rough terrain road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield

Derna (18A:4116) [rough terrain point city/minor port coastal cliffs road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield

Ain el Gazala (18A:4518) [clear terrain point city coast road escarpments hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip is present in hex at the turn’s start, but in the M. Phase it is destroyed by the Ind 1-10* Mot Inf X 3.
[vacant]

18A:4618 [clear terrain coast road escarpments hex; E of Gazala]:
8 Inf XX HQ 9 (Aus) [admin moved 16 hexes along road from Bengasi (18A:3121)]
2-8 Inf X 20 (Aus) [admin moved from Bengasi]
1-8 MG II 1 RNF [admin moved from Bengasi]
1 step of attack supply [spent 12 SMPs moving along the road from Barce]

Tobruch (18A:4817) [clear terrain point city/standard port/fortress road junction escarpment coast hex]:
unimproved fortress
1-cap temporary airfield, constructed in the M. Phase by the 0-1-4 cons X in the hex.
0-1-4 Cons X 66 RPC (Col) [never moved; spent 4 MPs building the 1-cap temporary airfield]
0-1-8 Hv AA II AA=2 51 [never moved]
2-8 Inf X 24 (Aus) [at start at Tobruch; moved one hex to 18A:4818 and inflicted 2 hits on the 3-cap permanent airfield, then moved back into Tobruch]
one step of attack supply [one of the two steps beginning at Zaulet Msus (18A:3523); used 16 SMPs in the M. Phase moving to here along the road]
1 resource point [broken down in the I. Phase from the step of attack supply beginning the turn at Tobruch; in the M. Phase the other two resource points are shipped out of Tobruch to Martuh and Alexandria]
Blen 4 3B3 1-2/23 [inop.; air transferred to here from 18A:3618 in the M. Phase]

18A:4818 [clear terrain escarpment road hex; S of Tobruch]:
3-cap permanent airfield w/ 2 hits of damage done this turn
3-8 Art 13 [admin moved 15 hexes to here along road from Barce (18A:3418)]
2-8 Inf X 26 (Aus) [admin moved 15 hexes to here along road from Barce]
Hurri 1 5F5 1/8 [operative; never moved]

18A:4819 [clear terrain road hex; 2 hexes S of Tobruch]:
1-10* Mot Inf X 3 (Ind) [began at 18A:4818; in M. Phase it regular moved to Ain el Gazala and destroyed the 1-cap permanent airstrip, then moved back to 4818; in the E. Phase it first moved to 18A:5018 and inflicted two hits of damage on the 3-cap permanent airfield there, then moved to here]
1-10 Mot Inf II 1 M (FF) [in M. Phase regular moved from Zaulet Msus to 18A:4318; later exploited to here]
1-2-10* Mot SG X AA=1 7 [railed from Alexandria to Matruh, then admin moved along road to 19A:0618; later exploited to here]
3-2-10 Arm X 7 [railed from Alexandria to Matruh, then admin moved along road to 19A:0618, later exploited to here]
2-1-6 Tnk II 4 RT [turn reinf; disembarked at Porto Bardiya, then regular moved two hexes to 18A:5119; in the E. Phase it first moved one hex to 18A:5018 and inflicted one hit of damage on the 3-cap permanent airfield there, then moved to here]

19A:0319 [clear terrain coastal cliffs coast road border hex; S of Porto Bardiya]:
3-8 Inf X 22 G [began at Alexandria; railed to Matruh, then admin moved along the road to here]

Porto Bardiya (19A:0318) [clear terrain point city/minor port/fortress escarpment road terminus coast hex]:
unimproved fortress hex
1-8 AT II 65 [began at Tobruch; regular moved to here]

ME/ER-II Scenario: Apr I 41 Allied EOT dispositions; Eastern Libya and Western Egypt

Apr I 41 Allied EOT dispositions; Eastern Libya and Western Egypt

In Egypt [end of turn]:
Halfaya Pass (19A:0419) [coast road escarpments border hex]:
7-8 Inf XX 7 (Aus) [assembled here at the end of the M. Phase]
8 Inf XX HQ 7 (Aus) [began at Alexandria; railed to Matruh, then admin moved to here along the coast road]
2-8 Inf X 21 (Aus) [began at Alexandria; railed to Matruh, then admin moved to here along the coast road]
2-8 Inf X 25 (Aus) [began at Alexandria; railed to Matruh, then admin moved to here along the coast roadd]
2-8 Inf X 18 (Aus) [began at Matruh; admin moved along the coast road to here]

19A:0618 [clear terrain coast road hex; SW of Sidi Barrrani]:
2-1-6 Tnk II 7 RT [began at Disuq (20A:5026/19A:2815); railed to Matruh, where it ends the M. Phase; moved to here in E. Phase]

Matruh (19A:1218) [clear terrain point city/minor port transportation line junction coast hex]:
railhead marker
3-cap permanent airfield
2-8 Eng X 1 (Aus) [turn reinf.; sea transported to Suez, then railed to here]
1 resource point [sea transported to here from Tobruch using one E Med NTP]
Glad 3F3 0/8 [inop.; air transferred to here from Alexandria in E. Phase]
Blen 4 3B3 1-2/23 [inop.; air transferred to here from Alexandria in M. Phase]

19A:1418 [clear terrain major rail line coast hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield

Alexandria (20A:4930/19A:2416) [full hex city/major rail line coast hex]:
Supply Terminal marker
3-cap permanent airfield
2-8 Inf X 16 [began at Suez; admin moved along transportation lines to here]
0-2-6 Hv AA X AA=4 NMBDO 1 (RM) [never moved]
one step of attack supply [turn reinf; sea transported to Suez, then railed to here]
one resource point [sea transported to here from Tobruch using one E Med NTP]
Glad 3F3 0/8 [inop.; air transferred to here from Ismailia in E. Phase]

Cairo (19A:3219): [full hex city/transportation lines nexus hex]:
2-8 Inf X 23 [never moved]

Cairo (19A:3320) [clear terrain partial city hex; SE of Cairo full hex city hex]:
3-cap permanent air field

Ismailia (19A:3516) [sand reference city/standard port/Suez Canal transportation line junction hex]:
1-8 Marine Cmdo X Layf [never moved]

Suez (19A:3718) [clear terrain reference city/major port/Suez Canal transportation line junction coast hex]:
Supply Terminal marker
1-8 Inf II 11 (CS) [moved to here from Port Said]

WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Apr I 41 Allied EOT dispositions: Eastern Libya & Egypt

Apr I 41 Apr I 41 Allied EOT dispositions: Eastern Libya & Egypt

In Palestine [end of turn]:
Gaza (19A:4211) [clear terrain point city major rail line coast hex]:
1-8 Cav X 5 [never moved]

Tel Aviv (20A:5011/19A:4308) [clear terrain dot city/minor port major rail junction coast hex]:
1-8 Cav X 6 [never moved]

19A:4608 [rough terrain road hex; NE of Jerusalem]:
2-1-8 Cav X 4 [moved 1 hex to here from Jeursalem (19A:4509), where it began]

Haifa (20A:4710/19A:4305) [clear terrain dot city/major port transportation line junction coast hex]:
railhead marker
3-8* Mtn X Karp (Pol) [never moved]
0-8 Marine Cmdo II ME [began turn at Limassol (20A:3615), on Cyprus; sea transported to here using one E Med NTP]
Bombay 1T2 1-2/15 [operative; never moved]

Greece Off-Map Holding Box [end of turn]:
4-3-10* Arm X 1
3-8 Inf X 5 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X 16 (Aus)
2-8 Inf X 17 (Aus) [sea transported to Greece from Port Said using one E Med NTP; done this turn per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB; transfer based on ER-II and WitD/WW WD Scenario Allied OBs]
2-8 Inf X 19 (Aus) [sea transported to Greece from Port Said using one E Med NTP; done this turn per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB; transfer based on ER-II and WitD/WW WD Scenario Allied OBs]
2-8 Inf X 4 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X 6 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X 14
8 Inf XX HQ 2 (NZ)
8 Inf XX HQ 6 (Aus)
3-2-28 Art X W
0-8 Lt AA II AA=1 57
0-1-4 Cons X 43 RPC
5 pos AA AA=1
1 step of attack supply [turn reinforcement; sea transported to here; done this turn per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB; based on ER-II and WitD/WW WD Scenario Allied OBs]
Well 1C 3NB4 1-6/28 [remains here this turn per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB]
Blen 1 2B3 1-2/16
Hurri 1 5F5 1/8

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario

In Iraq:
Iraq is still a pro-Allied neutral.
Habbaniya (22A:2828) [clear terrain point city road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
0-1-4 Static II 1 AS (Col) [never moved]
Audax 1A1 1/8 [operative; never moved]

Shaibah (22A:4314) [clear terrain point city secondary rail line hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield
0-1-4 Static II 2 AS (Col) [never moved]

ME Command Replacement Pool:
1-10* Mot SG X AA=1 2 [began 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario @ El Agheila (18A:2930); eliminated in Mar II 41 Axis Combat Phase]
3-2-10 Arm X 3 [began 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario @ El Aghelia; eliminated in Mar II 41 Axis Combat Phase]
3-2-10 Arm X 4 [per ER-II, begins “at-start” in ME Replacement Pool]

Non-Phasing Axis Air Activity in the Allied Exploitation Phase:
Late in the Allied Exploitation Phase the Italian MC 200 F type air unit based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at Slouch (18A:3222) does a non-phasing transfer air mission to the 3-cap permanent airfield at 18A:0603, in Sicily.

Turn Activity:
Weather die roll: 2, for clear weather in weather zone D; calm seas.
Replacement Points (RPs) are brought on as reinforcements, but no builds are done this turn.
The 4 gsp’s beginning the turn at the Valletta hex (18A:0407) on Malta generated on the Mar II 41 Allied Initial Phase (per the WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB) are removed near the end of the Apr I Allied Initial Phase.
In the Movement Phase the Allies destroy one step of attack supply @ Zaulet Msus (18A:3523).
In the course of the Movement Phase the Allies destroy the 1-cap permanent airstrip at Ain el Gazala (18A:4518) and the 3-cap permanent airfield at 18A:5018 [Gambut]. They also inflict two hits of damage on the 3-cap airfield at 18A:4818 [El Adem]

In the Initial Phase a step of attack supply at Tobruch is broken down into three resource points. Also at Tobruch, in the Movement Phase the 0-1-4 Cons X 66 RPC (Col) spends 4 MPs in the hex to construct a 1-cap permanent airstrip there.

ME/ER-II Scenario: Apr I 41 Allied EOT; Axis dispositions

Apr I 41 Allied EOT; Axis dispositions

In the WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario, it is given that the “historical situation” occurs in the off-map Balkans and that therefore, in game terms, the Axis player in effect “calls” for German intervention in the Balkans at the competition of the Apr I 41 Allied turn, per WW Rule 38F2b.  This certainly could be the case in a WW “Southern Theater of Operations” Scenario or in a WW “Wavell’s War” Scenario, both of which combine the Balkan with the Western Desert and the Near East map groups, along with some others.  In our new scenario, the automatic Apr I 41 German intervention in the Balkans is important for the neutral Vichy Levant, as per WW Rule 38V3a, the Axis may afterwards (eg., as early as the Apr I 41 Axis turn) pressure Vichy France to grant Axis privileges in the Levant, per the results of a dice roll done in the following Axis Initial Phases, using the Vichy Levant Table, found on WW Game Play Chart 8.  Indeed, per the WW Master Sequence of Play Summary, in the Axis Initial Phase the voluntary dice roll for possible Axis privileges in the Levant occurs before the mandatory dice roll for the Iraqi Coup.  More later on Rule 38V3a-Axis Privileges in the Levant, Optional Rule 38J6-Axis Intervention in Iraq, and the new WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario.

ME/ER-II Scenario Mar II 41 Iraq set-up

Mar II 41 Iraq set-up

Rail movement:
8 Inf XX HQ 7 (Aus) [railed from Alex. to Matruh, then admin moved to 19A:0419]
2-8 Inf X 21 (Aus) [railed from Alex. to Matruh, then admin moved to 19A:0419]
2-8 Inf X 25 (Aus) [railed from Alex. to Matruh, then admin moved to 19A:0419]
2-1-6 Tnk II 7 RT [railed from Disuq (20A:5026/19A:5026) to Matruh]
2-8 Eng X 1 (Aus) [turn reinf. railed from Suez to Matruh]
one turn reinf step of attack supply [after disembarkation at Suez it railed to Alexandria]

Eastern Med. sea transport movement:
2-8 Inf X 17 (Aus) [sea transport on NTP from Port Said to Greece]
2-8 Inf X 19 (Aus) [sea transport on NTP from Port Said to Greece]
0-8 Marine Cmdo II ME [sea transport on NTP to from Cyprus to Haifa (20A:4710)]
one resource point sea transported on NTP from Tobruch to Alexandria
one resource point sea transported on NTP from Tobruch to Matruh

Western Med sea transport movement:
4 gsp’s generated on the Apr I 41 Allied Initial Phase at Gibraltar [to Malta; on 1 W Med NTP]

Replacement Point Inventory:
Br inf: 5 at-start + 2 turn reinf. = 7 EOT
Br arm: 1.5 at-start + .5 turn reinf. = 2 EOT
Aus inf: 1.5 at-start + .5 turn reinf. = 2 EOT
NZ inf: 1.5 at-start + .5 turn reinf. = 2 EOT
Note: All accumulated Allied inf and arm RPs are stored at the Alexandria hex.

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Apr I 41 Allied EOT off-map display detail

Apr I 41 Allied EOT off-map display detail

Commentary:
It appears the Allied player can do little this turn but retreat as the newly constituted Afrika Korps asserts itself.  The Allies must watch their losses and brace up for the numerous upcoming demands.  The element of the surprise offensive inherent in the Scenario’s ER-II Mar II 41 Axis turn start date and the forward and vulnerable Allied at-start set-up at El Ageheila both make for the destruction of the Allied armored force there and also for the belated beginning of the fortress improvement construction labor at Tobruch.  Also, contrary to what is offered in the ER-II Scenario and WW Western Desert Scenario Allied OBs, in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario the British Well 1C NB type air unit will remain in the Greece off-map holding box until the May II 41 Allied turn.  Here it is assumed that it will be needed each turn in Greece against a good Axis player executing Operation Marita.

War-game strategists may take notice that the Axis player has again done nothing with the LW Ju 87B and Ju 87R air units (one each, for a total of 2 units) based this Allied player turn at Soluch. Beginning the 1941 ME Scenario at Sicily, these LW air units did not fly the Malta Status bombing mission from there; instead they flew the air transfer mission to Soluch (18A:3222), in Libya, in the Axis Exploitation Phase. This turn they could have flown non-phasing harassment air missions in the Cyrenaica, thereby certainly hindering the eastwards admin movement of the forward Allied ground units there; but again they fiddled in their tents, perhaps poised for the unlikely DAS air mission just in case the Allied player rashly attacked the spear points of the forward Axis motorized columns just south of Soluch and Zaulet Msus. But throughout the second quarter of 1941 the Axis player might ought to watch his losses in the MTO, especially the air units.  I’m currently thinking that “success” in the Middle East campaign in this epoch will revolve around what will happen at Tobruch, Habbaniya, and Baghdad on likely either the May I or the May II 41 turns.  And so in the opening turns of the Scenario both sides perhaps should be patient and prudent, preparing for these critical future turns by preserving until then their decisive assets and maneuvering these assets to be readily available in those crucial zones.

Mar II 41 Allied Set-Up

At Malta:
Malta Status: 10 [per ER-II]
Malta Repair Rate: 1 repair point each turn.
Valletta hex flack factor (3 intrinsic + 2 ground unit): 5
Valletta (18A: 0407):
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
3-6* Inf X                               1 M [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB after WitD Allied OB booklet analysis]
2-6* Inf X                               2 M [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB after WitD Allied OB booklet analysis]
1-8 MG II                                1 Ch [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB after WitD Allied OB booklet analysis]
0-1-8 Hv AA II      AA=2      10 [per ER-II]
0-4 Cons X                             MC [per ER-II]
Four gsp’s generated on the Mar II 41 Allied turn. [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB]
Note: All units are technically Allied U-2.

ER-II Mar II 41 At-Start: Sicily & Malta zones

At-Start: Sicily & Malta zones

In Libya:
Except as indicated below, all Allied force dispositions in Libya are per F. Watson’s “Enter Rommel-II” Europa Battle Scenario found in TEM#71.
El Aghelia (18A:2930) [clear terrain point city coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip [per ER-II]
1-10* Mot SG X   AA=1        2 [provisional 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario at-start set-up done for the EA game report]
3-2-10 Arm X                         3 [provisional 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario at-start set-up done for the EA game report]

Agedabia (18A:3327) [clear terrain point city road junction hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip [per ER-II]

Zaulet Msus (18A:3523) [stony desert point city road hex]:
1-10 Mot Inf II                      1 M     (FF)
two steps of attack supply

Soluch (18A:3222) [clear terrain point city secondary rail terminus hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
one step of attack supply

Bengasi (18A:3121) [clear terrain reference city\major port transportation line nexus hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
2-8 Inf X                                 20       (Aus)
1-8 MG II                                1 RNF
8 Inf XX HQ Unit                   9          (Aus)

Barce (18A:3418) [rough terrain point city transportation line nexus hex]:
2-8 Inf X                                 26       (Aus)
3-8 Art X                                13
one step of attack supply

Rough terrain road hex 18A:3617:
3-cap permanent airfield [per WW OB booklet, p. 34]

Rough Terrain road hex 18A:3618 [Maraua]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
Blen 4             3B3     1-2/23

Derna (18A:4116) [rough terrain point city/minor port coastal escarpment road hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]

Ain el Gazala (18A:4518) [clear terrain point city coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip [per ER-II]

Tobruch (18A:4817) [clear terrain point city/standard port coast road junction fortress hex]:
unimproved fortress [per ER-II]
2-8 Inf X                                 24       (Aus)
0-1-8 Hv AA II     AA=2       51
1-8 AT II                                 65
0-4 Cons X                             66 RPC (Col)
one step of attack supply

18A:4818 [El Adem; clear terrain road escarpment hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
1-10* Mot Inf X                     3          (Ind)
Hurri 1                       5F5     1/8

18A:5018 [Gambut; clear terrain hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]

Porto Bardiya (19A:0318) [clear terrain point city minor point fortress road terminus coast hex]:
unimproved fortress [per WitD Axis OB booklet for Dec I 40 at-start]

ME/ER-II Scenrio: Mar II 41 At-Start dispositions; Libya and Egypt

Mar II 41 At-Start dispositions; Libya and Egypt

In Egypt:
Except as indicated below, all Allied force dispositions in Egypt conform to the ER-II Scenario stipulations.
Matruh (19A:1218) [clear terrain point city/minor port coast road/major rail line junction hex]:
railhead marker [EA game report note:  in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario the Matruh-Tobruch railroad construction does not begin until the Aug II 41 Allied turn, per the WitD Allied OB booklet]
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]
2-8 Inf X                                 18       (Aus)

Coast road hex 19A:1418 [Maaten Baggush; clear terrain major rail line coast hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II]

Alexandria (20A:4930/19A:2416) [major city/major port major rail line coast hex]:
[intrinsic flack:  1]
3-cap permanent airfield [per WW OB booklet, p. 34.  Note that per the WW Airbase summary major city hexes have an airbase capacity of 3.]
2-8 Inf X                                 21       (Aus)
2-8 Inf X                                 25       (Aus)
3-8 Inf X                                 22 G
3-2-10 Arm X                          7
8 Inf XX HQ Unit                   7          (Aus)
0-2-6 Hv AA X     AA=4        NMBDO 1 (RM)
1-2-10* Mot SG X   AA=1      7
Glad                3F3     0/8
Blen 4             3B3     1-2/23

Disuq (20A:5026) [canal intensive point city major rail hex]:
2-1-6 Tank II                          7 RT

Cairo hex (19A:3219): [full city/transportation lines nexus hex]
[intrinsic flack:  1]
2-8 Inf X                                 23

Cairo hex (19A:3320): [clear terrain partial city hex; SE of Cairo full hex city hex]
3-cap permanent airfield [per WW OB booklet, p. 34.  Note that per the WW Airbase Summary the two Cairo major city hexes each have an airbase capacity of 3.]
[intrinsic flack:  1]

Port Said (20A:5121/19A:3413) [swamp dot city/standard port/Suez canal major rail terminus coast hex]:
[intrinsic flack:  1]
2-8 Inf X                                 17 (Aus) [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario OB, required transfer to Greece on the Apr I 41 Allied turn]
2-8 Inf X                                 19 (Aus) [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario OB, required transfer to Greece on the Apr I 41 Allied turn]
The ER-II Scenario shows the Aus 2-8 Inf X 19 in the Greece Holding Box. In the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Mar II 41 Axis turn at-start set-up it is placed in Egypt in order to better comply with the WitD Allied OB booklet’s Apr I 41 Allied turn Transfer to Greece stipulations.
1-8 Inf II                                11       (CS)

Ismailia (19A:3516) [clear terrain reference city/standard port/Suez canal transportation line junction hex]:
[intrinsic flack:  1]
1-8 Marine Cmdo X              Lay
Glad                3F3     0/8

Suez (19A:3718) [clear terrain reference city/major port/Suez canal transportation line junction coast hex]:
[intrinsic flack:  2]
Standard Supply Terminal Marker
2-8 Inf X                                 16

WW ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario Mar II 41 Axis turn Allied at-start set-up: eastern Egypt, Palestine, and Cyprus

Mar II 41 Axis turn Allied at-start set-up: eastern Egypt, Palestine, and Cyprus

In Palestine:
All Allied force dispositions in Palestine conform to the initial force stipulations found in the ER-II Scenario.
Gaza (19A:4210) [clear terrain point city major rail line coast hex]:
1-8 Cav X                               5

Tel Aviv (20A:5011) [clear terrain reference city/minor port major rail line junction coast hex]:
1-8 Cav X                               6

Jeursalem (19A:4509) [rough terrain dot city transportation line junction hex]: [Note WitD Map Errata for the spelling.]
2-1-8 Cav X                            4

Haifa (20A:4710) [clear terrain dot city/major port transportation line junction coast hex]:
railhead marker [per WW Rule 41B1a-Western Desert Campaign Starting Conditions, “the transportation line from Haifa to Tripoli (20A:4005) is a road, not a railroad.”  This stipulation is used in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario.  More later on its construction.]
[intrinsic flack:  1]
3-8* Mtn X                             Karp   (Pol)
Bombay          1T2     1-2/15

On Cyprus:
Limassol (20A:3615) [clear terrain point city/standard port coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airstrip [per WitD Allied OB booklet, p. 1]
0-8 Marine Cmdo II              ME [this unit is not in ER-II; it is included in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario per WitD Allied OB booklet analysis]
1 gsp generated on the Mar I 41 Allied turn [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB]
Note: the marine cmdo unit is technically Axis U-1.

Famagusta (20A:3411) [clear terrain point city/standard port coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airfield [per WitD Allied OB booklet, p. 1]

On Crete:
Note that in the WW 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario BF map 15B is placed below WD maps 18A, 19A and NE map 20A.  This is different than the BF 15B map overlap stipulations found in the official WW scenarios such as the “Desert and the Balkans” Scenario or the “Wavell’s War” Scenario.  No game action is permitted on the exposed portion of map 15B until the occurrence of the “Assault on Crete” segment of the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario, which begins on the May II 41 Allied turn.  The “Assault on Crete” segment is then linked with the WW ME/ER-II core Scenario as essentially a reduced WW “Desert and the Balkans” Scenario. The Crete segment ends with the voluntary German cessation of operations in the Balkans, per essentially Rule 3E5b.
At the beginning of the second Axis turn after the implementation of Rule 3E5b-Voluntary Cessation of Operations in the Balkans, which is necessarily used in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario, 3-cap permanent airfields (w/out hits) appear at Khania (18A:4403) and Erakleion (18A:4903).  This appears to coincide with the WitD Allied OB booklet for the WW WD Scenario situation.
Khania (18A:4403) [rough terrain reference city/standard port coast road terminus hex]:
3-cap permanent airfield [per ER-II and the WW Operation Marita Scenario Allied OB]

Rethymnon (19A:4603) [rough terrain point city/standard port coast road hex]:
1-cap permanent airfield [per the WW Operation Marita Scenario and Assault on Crete Scenario Allied OBs]

In Iraq:
Iraq begins the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario as a pro-Allied neutral.
The Allied forces in Iraq dispositions indicated below are based on the WitD Allied OB booklet and F. Watson’s “Iraq: Rashid Ali and the Golden Square” Europa Battle Scenario found in TEM#81.

Habbaniya (22A:2828):
3-cap permanent airfield
0-1-4 Static II                                    1 AS (Col)
Audax             1A1     1/8

Shaibah (22A:4314):
3-cap permanent airfield
0-1-4 Static II                                    2 AS (Col)

ME/ER-II Scenario Mar II 41 Iraq and eastern Syria set-up

Mar II 41 Iraq and eastern Syria set-up

Greece Off-Map Holding Box:
This is based on the ER-II Scenario.
4-3-10* Arm                          1 [This is a BF refit kit unit used in the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario. It would normally be used in the WW “Desert and the Balkans” or “Wavell’s War” Scenarios, I think. The ER-II Scenario indicates the Br 3-2-10 Arm X 1]
3-8 Inf X                                 5 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X                                 16 (Aus) [In the ER-II Scenario this unit is found in Egypt, “in the Delta.”  It is placed here after analysis of the WitD Allied OB booklet and the Operation Marita Scenario Allied Order of Battle found in the WW OB booklet]
2-8 Inf X                                 4 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X                                 6 (NZ)
2-8 Inf X                                 14
8 Inf XX HQ                            2 (NZ)
8 Inf XX HQ                            6 (Aus)
3-2-8 Art X                             W
0-8 Lt AA II    AA=1               57
0-1-4 Cons X                          43 RPC
1 x 5 pos AA         AA=1
Blen 1             2B3     1-2/16
Hurri 1           5F5     1/8
Well 1C          3NB4  1-6/28 [per the 1941 ME/ER-II/Crete Scenario draft OB, this air unit is placed here at-start]

ME/ER-II Scenario: Mar II 41 At-Start Off-Map display detail

Mar II 41 At-Start Off-Map display detail

Accumulated Allied Replacements:  5 Br Inf RPs, 1.5 Br Arm RPs, 0 Br ARPs, 1.5 NZ Inf RPs, 1.5 Aus Inf RPs. [per ER-II]  All accumulated Allied inf and arm RPs are stored at the Alexandria hex.

ME/ER-II Scenario: Mar II 41 At-Start Off-Map display detail

Mar II 41 At-Start Off-Map display detail

 

Analysis: Central Powers Food and National Will situation

Food

In this game, as in presumably most TGW grand campaigns, food will be a critical consideration. The following chart reflects the starting condition, consumption as the war drags on, and Central Powers’ food income at each November harvest.

New / Total / Change / Condition
2 2 At Start
0 -2 Consume SEP, OCT14
6 6 Harvest NOV14
8 2 Plunder Liege NOV14
12 4 Maximum Trade NOV14

0 -12 Consume NOV14 – OCT15
4 4 Harvest NOV15
15 11 Plunder in the East NOV15
17 2 The Netherlands join the CP NOV15
19 2 Blockade Rate Trade w/ Switzerland and Denmark NOV15

22 3 Bulgaria join the CP DEC15
10 -12 Consume NOV15 – OCT16
14 4 Plunder in the East NOV16
16 2 Harvest NOV16
18 2 Blockade Rate Trade w/ Switzerland and Denmark NOV16

2 Plunder in the East NOV17
0 Harvest NOV17
Blockade Rate Trade w/ Switzerland and Denmark NOV17
-12 Consume NOV16 – OCT17

-2 Harvest NOV18
Blockade Rate Trade w/ Switzerland and Denmark NOV18 (if Germany not shaken)
8 Plunder in the East NOV18

-4 Harvest NOV19
Blockade Rate Trade w/ Switzerland and Denmark NOV19 (if Germany not shaken)

In the game, the Entente declared war against The Netherlands, driving trade away from that country, but the Central Powers remained able to trade at the maximum rate with other adjacent neutrals. The Netherlands joined the Central Powers, taking its grain with it, but that grain would be plundered by the Central Powers in any case if Germany does the logical thing and bloodlessly seizes a neutral The Netherlands in October 1916 – it’s trivially easy and a very good decision.

Thee Entente held the German drive into Belgium and France far short of historical. If the Germans conquered more granaries (at least the historical Antwerp) then the situation would be shifted even further in favor of the Central Powers.

As such, we can see that the critical decision is the Central Powers player ruthlessly saving four resource points during the opening campaign and ruthlessly trading them for food in November 1914. Combat supply be as it may, that food is essential for Central Powers victory in the end game because it avoids any hunger in 1915 and thus pushes hunger back until much later than historical.

Given trade, the Central Powers won’t run out of food until September 1918, or later. That being the case, if influenza strikes it probably won’t do double damage to the Central Powers. In any case, because the Central Powers will again have food in its belly for November 1918 thru February 1919 or later, the distant blockade will not substantially help the Entente end the war on historical schedule or, indeed, until mid-1919.

I suggest that this analysis is an amplified reason for system-wide revision of the rules regarding how neutral countries defend themselves against their controlling sides. The situation of The Netherlands basically breaks the food rules.

Meanwhile, the American Expeditionary Force in 1919 is very powerful. We’re going to need it.

National Will

In preparation for the February morale check, and to give ourselves a better sense of the progress of the campaign, we also conducted a thorough review of the morale point and national will situations in DJ05. Our conclusions surprised us in some ways and proved disappointingly consistent in others.

  1. In digitizing the morale point tracks, we discovered several situations in which we had failed to record morale point changes: half a dozen combats, a few calendar-specific bonuses, and even an entire production cycle of out-of-theater events.
  2. Including those changes, and adjusting for changes between a currently partial re-play of the incomplete war in Africa, some values changed significantly.
  3. In February 1915, the annual morale check awarded France a revised bonus of 46.33 morale points. This presumably broadly fit with the difference in fortresses, Lille, factories, and resource centers lost historically versus in DJ05.
  4. Britain gained a revised 18.67 morale points in February 1915. A review of game reports indicated that the British Expeditionary Force in DJ05 suffered no casualties in 1914: its combats were exceptional and ended in a few bloodless retreats or solid victories. In partial compensation, the Boer revolt went a-historically badly for the British (it always will in the game) and cost the British 6.67 morale points (vice probably zero historically).
  5. By February 1916, it became apparent that the Italian morale check column in the rules must be broken. The Italians could only achieve the historical by scarcely fighting and historically the numerous disasters on the Isonzo River cost the Italians heavily throughout the war.
  6. DJ05’s Austro-Hungarians gained three morale points in February 1916 because DJ05’s Germans declared war and took a sector of the front against Italy immediately.
  7. Britain earned 1.67 morale points during the February 1916 morale check.
  8. France earned a February 1916 bonus of 57.5 morale points, landing solidly above Germany’s national will, though by November the French had fought themselves back down to national will three and parity with the Germans.
  9. Absent any further Entente attacks, we predicted a German bonus of 16 morale points in February 1917. Germany lost 207 morale points from February 1915 thru January 1916, 47 more points than historical. During the same months during 1916, Germany lost approximately 182 morale points, 93 fewer than historical. Germany will gather 150 bonus points from Russia in 1917 and lose approximately 67 for events out of theater. Historically, Germany suffered approximately 148 morale points of losses in the West Theater during 1917, a value unlikely in DJ05. Therefore, we expected that 16 bonus points in 1917 would double in 1918, double again in 1919, and quite possibly decide the war.
  10. We forecast Austria-Hungary gaining approximately 13 morale points during February 1917. The Empire will gain 50 morale points from Russia and lose 17 out of theater during the 1917 morale cycle, so the Empire can expect another small gain in 1918.
  11. France coasted toward a bonus of 127 points in February 1917 and expected another huge bonus in 1918.
  12. Despite attacking much less than historically throughout the war so far, Italy in 1917 and 1918 will gain exactly the morale bonus it gained in 1916: zero. In DJ05, the Zeppelins concentrated against Italy and kept, and will keep, its morale relatively low.
  13. We expected Britain to gain approximately 15 morale points in February 1917 and probably a larger bonus in 1918.

Monthly routines

Only a short note today – small updates to the Glossary (a recent discussion of the Popofski maneuver made me finally fill out that article, and I´ve also added a small paragraph on AT guns, even though most other unit types are lacking any description. Additionally, Todd allowed us to publish his two newest posts on the DJ05-game report. Enjoy!