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July II 44

Weather is clear everywhere. Atlantic rough, Mediterranean calm.

Axis Player-Turn

All units are in supply. Germany spends 10 Inf RPs rebuilding cadres and upgrading to 4-6-6 Inf XX along with 3 German and 1 RSI ARPs. FW 190’s shoot down a P-47D25 escorting harassment near Strasbourg, but one B-26B makes it through. Allies put down 7 levels of harassment in the MTO and 11 in the ETO.

In Italy the front pulls back to a fortified line running through Roma to 26/1520 with a second line directly behind the first (NODL). 29th PzG XX arrives on the Adriatic coast to stiffen the defense. In France German c/m mount a two front attack on US 8th Inf XX in Rouen. The attack is conducted under skies darkened by DAS (8 units) flying from England. AA aborts 4 DAS leaving 11 DF + 7 DAS with 1/7 ATEC verses 101 AF for a 5:1 -1. A 1 is rolled for an EX, Germans recapture Rouen and cadre 21st Pz XX. A Pz XXX uses a 4:1 +3 to DE 5 DF of US Cav and Arty at 17/2207. An 84 point Pz XXX attacks 8 DF of US non-divisional units at 17/1806. Net +1 from 1/2 ATEC verses full AECA, but the flak misses all the DAS and 4 pts are added to the defense. 84:12 is a 7:1 +1 for a DH, and some of the survivors are overrun during exploitation.

Except for a rear guard in Marseille all Germans in S. France pull back to the Italian frontier and a blocking position 2 hexes west of Nice. 15th PzG XX heads north to assist defenses near the Swiss border.

Player-turn losses: US 16 DF, Germany 7, all unisolated.

Allied Player-Turn

Allied European rail Cap goes to 20 and the first French liberation reinforcements arrive in MR 18. MRs 13 and 16 are liberated. Britain spends 1 ARP, 3 Inf and 16 Armor RPs. The US spends 13 ARP, 8 Inf and 4 Arm RPs. The French spend 1 Arm RP. Partisans take out an Me109G6 at Belfort. No strat air is called up. The strat air roll is a 3, stat air level increases to 4 = 80% rail Cap and 75% aviation fuel. 3 Allied airbases are dismantled by slow moving British and Colonial construction units.

The Allies consider and then reject the idea of transporting ground units to Southern France. There are too few Allied fighters and they are too far away. Ground forces move more aggressively, lining up for 8 attacks in the ETO and 3 in the MTO, where the Axis is running out of mountains to hide in. Spitfires fly CAP over Rome where a thousand British guns open up on 13 DF (3x Arty divisions, Canadian Arty brigade, LR and Siege battalions). The 5:1 -1 attack rolls a 6 for a DE, reducing two German Inf XX to cadres. Rome falls to British arms! Heavy air support pushes the attack at 26/1622 to 8:1 -2 with a 4 rolled for a DH cadring another 5-7-6 division. An American attack against 5 DF at 26/1521 at 9:1 -2 results in a DR and 30 points of US troops advance to flank the German position on the coast.

British and Canadian troops take the port fort at Port-de-Bouc with a 7:1 -1, but the port is destroyed in the process. Marseilles falls to a 9:1 -2 but German port destruction units do their dirty work well. A US 5:1 at Dieppe retreats the defenders (kills the Port Fort) and sees the port destroyed. A 5-7-6 is cadred in the bocage at 17/1204 (9:1 -1) and US VII Corps (24 DF) advances to claim the hex. German flak at 17/1904 aborts 2 and returns 3 of 6 GS units. All the AA and parachuting pilots must’ve distracted the defenders who suffered a DH (3:1 rolled a 6) and only the 7-3-10 Mot Rocket Art retreated. A Mot Hvy AA Rgt and Tiger Bn were destroyed, but the American attackers decline to advance (something about crossing the Seine with LSSAH and another Pz XX on each flank). 116th Pz XX at 17/2303 is less lucky with AA, aborting 9 and returning 3 of the 36 points of GS. The resulting 5:1 -1 US/French attack is a DR for no losses. A British attack against two SS PzGrn Brigades at 17/2802 is also a bloodless DR.

Finally, after 2 months of heavy fighting the last hex of Paris is liberated by American forces. Much of the city lays in ruins, but at last the French capital is free from Fascist oppression. The Eiffel tower is one of many landmarks destroyed in “the Stalingrad of the West” despite all attempts by Allied troops to avoid unnecessary damage. Parisians vow that Berlin will suffer a worse fate. Hitler vows that every occupied Allied capital will be a fortress city like Paris.

During exploitation the port of Toulon is overrun, but the docks are found to be destroyed. British Infantry and US ants again form a line on the west bank of the Loire. US forces are across the Seine all the way from Paris to the Channel coast. Jets flew their first combat mission, RAF Meteors strafe a Luftwaffe base in France.

Player-turn losses: Allies none; Germany 7 isolated and 31 unisolated DF. Total losses for the turn 16 US, 45 German.

Comments

The Allies are finding it hard to create much momentum, too many troops are still sitting things out in England and the MTO. The Allies want to have a viable invasion threat to keep German forces tied up on beach defense, but are feeding in some of their uncommitted reserves. The port situation in S. France (a total of 2 minor ports are functioning) will not resolve itself quickly, so troops are being shipped around the Iberian peninsular to the Biscay ports (a time consuming process). At least the Allies are not outrunning their airbases.

Between upgrades, replacements and reinforcements Germany is getting almost as many DFs as she is losing. The air situation is getting worse and c/m ants with more AF than DF will never be rebuilt. July 44 ends with 1 Pz XX cadred, none in the dead pile, 55 Arm, 41.35 Inf and 43 ARPs. The Allies still have not crossed the line that initiates the Westwall emergency. The Allies on the other hand have 106 Arm RPs (combined), 132 US Inf, 64.6 Brit, 18.4 French, and 42 other Inf RPs, along with 32 NRPs, 81 US ARPs, and 54 British.

 

Dec II 43

Weather roll = 3, Zone C Snow, Zone D Winter, Zone E Mud. Sea Conditions: Atlantic Storm, Med Rough.

Axis Player Turn

Winter weather means mountain hexes are now prohibited terrain for c/m and artillery. Those Axis c/m and arty units that were still south of the final defensive line moved out of the way, two non-c/m divisions couldn’t make it back to the fort line and were left behind to fend for themsleves. Axis NT’s risk DZ rolls to lay mines along the French Med coast and at 16/0321, one mine point is held in reserve.

German Engineers give up any thought of maintaining rail through Paris. This frees up 3x 0-1-5 Cons III which move south. They will attempt to keep the Strasburg-Mulhouse-Belfort-Dijon-Bourges-Tours line open, along with at least two Rhine River crossing points.

Allied Player Turn

Axis are short 2 RE of occupation forces in Italy. Allies receive 1/2 RP for disbanding their two former Axis Italian units (0-1-6 Cons and 1-3-6 LAA), not enough to place any units as forming. No Italian replacement points will be produced until Apr I 44. French Partisans abort a Me109 and break a rail, Italian Partisans are ineffective. Allied repair 3 hits to their Naval TF, leaving 16 NRPs in the bank.

American Infantry (2x 1-8 Bn) land on Elba, followed by a 1-10 Lt Tank Bn. Furrious LW attempts to attack the supporting TFs result in heavy LW losses. USAAC lost 1x A-36A killed while the Luftwaffe lost one each Me109G6, Ju88C6, He177A and Ju88A4 (code S) killed and 3x Ju88A4 (including one code V) aborted. Only one LW unit made it through the fighters and AA to bomb the fleet – it missed. One LC was damaged during the landings. Commonwealth forces attacked 26/2121 at 7-1 (-2) and roll a 2 which becomes a HX against 1st Fallshirmjaeger XX. A British 6-4-6 Tank X is exchanged to avoid any loss of Infantry RPs. This places 44 HuD in a ZOC surround at 26/2120 and she suffers a HX at 5:1 (-4). Allied used 16 points of air (reduced to 4) and exchange a 9-8 Brit Inf XX. Allies move all but 2 of their 20 LCs to the Med and several c/m units to ports where they could be used for 2nd wave landings on the Italian/French Med coastlines. They continue to maintain several US and British divisions broken down in North Africa. The Allies are using their high MP Engineers and low MP Cons units with transport counters to repair rail and airbases in Italy while their Port Construction units work on Naples and Taranto.

The end of 1943 finds the following situation in regard to replacement points: Inf RPs: US 54.8, Brit 39.2 French 12.2 (all types), Canadians 7, Pol 1, Allied Italian .5, German 38.1, RSI 0. Arm RPs: US 43, Brit 15, French 1, Germans 8 NRPs: Allies 16, Axis 0 ARPs: US 46, Brit 50, French 6 Allied anti-ship 8 Allied Italian 3, Germany 36, RSI 1.

The Axis have 1x 5-7-6 Inf XX and 1 point of positional AA in the dead pile, along with a LW 4-8* cadre (9-8*) in the GUSTAV line and a 6-8* Pz Gren cadre at Rome. All German strat air units are operational. The Allies have a dead 6-4-6 Tank X along with a 3-8* Inf X, and a 4-5-8* Inf Cadre (9-8) (plus a French Mtn cadre and some dead Brits which began the game in that state). Allies have 1 hit which counts against them on an Italian TF, and several more which don’t count for VPs they could repair if they chose to do so. The VP total remains at +34.

Commentary

Another example of Luftwaffe impotence verses a well-covered Allied naval force. This time the Allies landed right at the German doorstep, but their bases on Corsica and Sardinia were immediately at hand. It is obvious that the only real threat to an Allied amphibious landing is a strong ground counter-attack force. The Germans are finding it hard to guard both the GUSTAV line and their rear areas. They don’t have anything resembling a counter-attack force in Italy anywhere north of the Gustav line. The terrible rail situation makes it impossible to shift troops quickly, yet the Allies threaten a major landing in the. As the Allied player it is very tempting to put in a landing Med (probably between Rome and Livorno) which would undoubtedly force the Germans to pull back from the GUSTAV line. It simply isn’t worth the cost in German replacement points to land in France at this point.

 

Oct I 44

Weather roll is a 5, Mud in zone C, Clear in zones D and E., sea zones are calm.

Axis Player-Turn

All units are in supply. Westwall restoration completed, Westwall emergency still in effect. No garrisons are called up. Germany spends 14 ARPs, RSI 1 to return all air units to the map except an RSI Me109G6. Germany receives a net 172 DF from reinforcements, tehn disbands 18 DF gaining 4 Arm and 29 Inf RPs. 48 Inf and 11 Arm RPs are used to rebuild cadres and return units from the eliminated pool worth 68 DF. Seven forts are QCed or started. No strategic air is called up. Allies fly 15 levels of harassment in the ETO, 6 in MTO.

Due to the combined effects of harassment and rail hits reinforcements from eastern and central Germany can not reach the front in a single turn. This is more than made up for by liberally spent replacement points. A NODL is formed along the entire WEST and SOUTH fronts. Two V-2 and one V-1 hits are made on London.

Allied Player-Turn

All units are in supply. Brits/Canadians/Pols upgrade a total of 6 AT Bns to Mot AT (SPAT). 7 US and 6 Brit ARPs return all air units to the map. America spends 4 Inf RP, Italy 1 Inf RP, Poland 2 Inf and 2 Arm RP, Britain 3 Arm RP and Canada 2 Arm RP. No strat air is called up by either side. Strat air DRMs cancel each other out, the strat air war roll is a 1, and the strat air level increases to 7. 20 US Arm RPs are loaned to Britain, leaving the US with 124 Arm RPs.

Four Luftwaffe air units attempt DAS missions – 2 are returned, 1 aborted and 1 eliminated. One SAAF Spit16 interceptor is shot down in the MTO by a lucky Me109G6 (rolled snake eyes). The Allies continue with their front wide offensives in both theaters, making a total of 27 attacks. US forces capture Boulogne on the Channel coast, but find the port thoroughly destroyed. Americans also push the Nazis out of Reims, gaining s second VP hex this turn. A total of 130 German DF are eliminated while 26 British and 9 US AF were lost in exchanges. Hitler awards many medals to his anti-tank experten as the British Army decides to eliminate three Tank Bdes and only cadred one Inf XX. With special replacements the net cost is less than one British Inf RP. Of course the cost in Arm RPs was much higher than necessary, but that’s why the Brits have so many Arm Bdes and the US so many Arm RPs to lend-lease.

Comments

The Allies are again encouraged by the VP count. Their airborne landing plan didn’t work out this time, but there is always next turn. Sooner or later the Allies will guess right, drop behind the German NODL, and chop it up. Meanwhile the calendar advances into worse possible weather conditions. Germany has some ZOC surrounds on large Allied (full ATEC) stacks covered by plentiful Allied air support. The Allies are being very careful with the Pols, Canadians, French and other minor allies. With 79 British Inf RPs sitting in the bank and plenty of units that can be scrapped it doesn’t look like the risk of German losses is worth the potential gain any attack might bring. Germany will wait for bad weather, continue to NODL and allow the Allies to push 1 hexrow forward each turn. The Allies have little choice but to continue the meat grinder strategy until such time as they can see a way to break through.

 

August I 44

Weather is clear everywhere. All sea zones are calm.

Axis Player-Turn

All units are in supply. Piemonte and Liguria garrisons are activated.

Reinforcement activities result in a net loss of 1 DF for the Axis. Germany spends 14 Inf and 4 Arm RPs rebuilding cadres and upgrading to 4-6-6 Inf XX gaining 24 DF in the process. 7 German ARPs are used to return all air units to the map and the RSI NRP is converted to mines. 4 rail cap are added to the Italian net, making it 46 (no sense in letting all those Resource Points sit in the bank). The Allies put down relatively few harassment hits.

Luftwaffe night bombers get a hit on the port at 17/4417 (La Nouvelle).German defenses are pulled back on Nice and the adjusted slightly in Italy.

The line in France is shortened by pulling back a hex here and there, most notably along the Seine south of Paris. Some hexes are now held by solitary German Infantry divisions with no river to assist their defense. Swordfish catch a German NT laying mines off the Danish coast, but are aborted by flak. Several other attempts are made to find the German by Coastal Command, but all fail to make contact. SS and Wehrmacht Panzer XXX roll up to the Loire line adjacent to British, US and Canadian held hexes. Allies fly copious DAS over those hexes, but the Luftwaffe does not attempt to interfere with ground combat, instead laying several mines in both the Adriatic and North Sea. The Nazis attack a hex held by US ants. Because of the intervening river AF is down to 71.5 vs 8 DF and their flak aborts 3 and returns 1 air units, leaving 2 to provide DAS. The attack goes in at 71.5:12 or 5:1 -1 (full AECA and ATEC), roll is a 1 for an EX. SS PzGren XX 10F is cadred and 8 DF of US ants go to the eliminated pool.

V-1’s score 2 hits on London, their first in the game.

Player-turn losses: US 8 DF, Germany 8, all unisolated.

Allied Player-Turn

French MRs 3, 14 and Paris are liberated. French 19th Static XX comes full and Italian Nembo Para-Inf XX is bought out of eliminated pool. US Spends 10.5 Inf, 6.5 Arm and 9 ARPs, the British spend 2 ARPs. A US Mot Hvy AA converts to 3-RE transport counter. Allies QC 1 airbase and 1 fort. Strat air roll is a 4 – no change, and no strat air is called up by either side.

Allied European rail Cap goes to 24.Seeing no profit in waiting to build up to attack Nice, the British admin move 3 Arm, 1 Inf and 1 Art XX, along with ants, up the Rhone River valley.

There is a steady droning of transports delivering non-divisional units from the MTO to S. France. The Hamilcar glider unit is once again eliminated while delivering a Port Construction X to Marseilles. August I brings a significant buildup of Allied strength along the upper Rhone – gone are the 8 point stacks of ants and most hexes are held by 2 divisions plus enough ants to give some ATEC/AECD.

A major air battle erupts over 17/2802 as USAAF P-47’s intercept Luftwaffe DAS and escorts. One P-47 is aborted, 2 Ju-88’s and a He-111 are killed.

ETO Combat: 17/1004 at 5:1 +3, a 5-7-6 XX is DE (cadred), US advances. 17/1304 at 5:1 -1 a 5-7-6 XX is retreated from Bocage, US advances 20 DF into the Bocage.

17/1504 at 5:1 -1 retreats 11th Pz XX, no Allied advance. 17/1904 at 5:1 +3 a 5-7-6 XX is DE (cadred). No advance by the French/Polish Armored divisions.

17/2802 at 7:1 -2 results in a DH and the cadre of SS PzGren XX 10 F is eliminated and a PzGren X is retreated. No advance by US. 16/3132 at 7:1 +2 a DE cadres a 4-6-6 and kills an SS Tiger Bn. British must withdraw to avoid triggering the Westwall emergency, so cadre lives.

MTO Combat:

26/1524 82 Br/Fr/Can/NZ/Indian/Pol AF supported by 9 GS (AA missed all 4 units)attack 21 DF. AECA balances out terrain for a 4:1 even up attack with a DH result. Germans cadre 4th Para XX and kill a 1-2-4 Fortress Rgt. The British advance to ZOC out the adjacent 4-6-6 Inf XX.

26/1523 Br/Fr Mountain troops attack at 6:1 -1 and DH the above mentioned 4-6-6, cadre is killed by ZOCs.

26/1626 Two British Corps attack across the Tevere river west of Rome. Engineers cancel out the Fort DRM and a 4 is rolled in this 5:1 attack for a DH which cadres one of the two defending German Inf XX. 29 British DF advance.

26/1420 A German 5-8 Jaeger XX is DRed by US forces at 5:1 -2. 26/1421 14 DF of German Infantry is attacked at 4:1 -2 under a hail of bombs (32 GS halved for terrain). The attack is a bust – AR.After having sat on the ground throughout movement and combat phases to guard against Luftwaffe incursions Allied fighters go on an airbase bombing rampage. Allied bombers visit rail yards in Leipzig, Magdeburg and on both sides of the Rhine.

Player-turn losses: Germany 39, all unisolated

Comments

The loss of German DF (47 this turn) is starting to affect the Germans, and many Infantry cadres are unable to get back to a city where they can be rebuilt. Germany still has plenty of Arm RPs, but is feeling a shortage if Infantry replacements. The Allies’ decision to leave the Axis in possession of Nice released significant forces that were easily moved into place in 1 turn. I expect the Allies will stop hiding behind the Rhone River and advance to trigger the Westwall Emergency next turn. This will open up opportunities for German c/m to inflict British/Canadian/Polish casualties. The Axis in Italy are a constant drain on replacements, but can not break free for a clean retreat to their next line. They need bad weather DRMs to hold that line anyway, so must suffer and trade blood for time.

 

August II 44

Weather is clear everywhere. Atlantic is rough, other sea zones are calm.

Axis Player-Turn

All units are in supply. Replacement activities result in a net gain of 30 DF. The rest of the France garrison is activated (2 Regts). Germany spends 18 Inf, 7 Arm to rebuild cadres and 10 F SS PzGren XX for a net gain of 32 DF. 11 Luftwaffe and 1 RSI ARP are spent to return all but 1x He111 to the map (22 German ARPs remain). Luftwaffe fighters intercept Allied harassment over Mulhouse and kill a B-26B, P-47’s abort a FW 190. A second mission to the same hex drew no challengers. No Strat Air is called up.

One V-1 hit on London, total of 3 so far. In France the Germans adjust their lines and get set for a major Allied offensive. There are no profitable attacks, so none are launched. A NODL with several front line hexes held by single Panzer XX runs from the 19XX hex row north to the coast at Le Treport. From 18XX south 7 front line hexes are held by c/m and a second line of 6 non-c/m stacks is 1-2 hexes behind the first. Once again the rail lines across the Rhine are cleared for traffic. So far only a handful of forts have been constructed in Belgium and German annexed France, the engineers have been tied up repairing rail lines.

North of Roma the German line retreats from exposed positions, but for the most part remains in contact with the Allies. Two PzGren divisions move south from coastal watch in Northern Italy, one to the front, the other opposite Elba. Engineers that aren’t engaged in fort building repair rail and airbase hits.

Player-turn losses: none.

Allied Player-Turn

Rail cap in France and Italy are each increased by 2. La Havre rebuild is completed, Marseilles and Toulon rebuilds begin. Three permanent airbases are quick constructed near the front in France. Strat Air roll is a 4 – no change. Germany calls up her strat air force. Several C-47s replace fighters in garrisons, these fighters are due to be replaced next turn by newer models.

The Allies conduct the expected major offensives in Italy and France. A British attack against 16th SS PzGren XX at 26/1526 at 6:1 -1 is a DH cadring the division and ZOCing out the adjacent hex. At 26/1525 a 5-7-6 Inf XX is DE at 5:1 +2. An Me109G6 was shot down over 26/1422 trying to provide DAS. 25 TBF of GS (halved) makes for a 6:1 -2 attack resulting in an EX cadring a 4-6-6 and eliminating a British 6-4-10 Tank X. Brits advance to ZOC out the 15 point stack n 26/1421. Allied aircraft deliver enough GS to bring the attack at 26/1421 up to 4:1 -2, and roll a 6 for a DR, reducing two 5-7-6 Inf XX to cadres. The US 88th Inf XX and Japanese-American 442nd RCT advance, along with armor and artillery. MTO losses 27 German DF, 4 British.

Despite Allied airbase bombing which took out or drew up several LW fighters the Germans fly a major DAS mission (3 air units) with heavy escort (4 fighters) and CAP (2 fighters) over the LW ground division in 16/3132. The reasoning being that if this hex is held the adjacent c/m stack will have a place to retreat. Allied CAP and interceptors (7x P-47D25) have a turkey shoot. Two escorts aborted, two shot down, 1 ground attack returned, and 2 bombers shot down, for one Allies fighter aborted. A second DAS mission over 21st Pz XX at 17/1203 by Me109G6’s with a G10 escort is met by the best fighters the RAF has. Meteors score their first air-to-air victory, aborting a G6. Spit 14’s and Tempest 5’s abort the other Me109’s with no RAF losses.

ETO Combat: 16/3132 at 4:1 +2 a DR ZOCs out 3133.

16/3133 at 7:1 -2 another DR cadres 10 F SS PzGren XX due to ZOCs.

17/2602 at 6:1 -2 results in a third DR by Commonwealth forces, retreating 15th PzGren XX and a flak Bn.

17/1904 sees US/French make a 5:1 +3 rolling a 1 for DH cadre a 5-7-6 Inf XX.

17/1203 at 5:1 -1 is an EX. 21 Pz XX, US 83 and 90 Inf XX are cadred.

17/1003 with the aid of 17 GS US makes a 4:1 and a HX vs 14 DF. Two German Inf XX cadred, US Engr and Arty X eliminated. The minor port of Le Treport is taken intact.

17/1104 at 4:1 -1 is a DR, retreating 9th Pz XX and a flak Rgt. One A-20C is aborted, some other air units returned. Germans are ejected from the last hex of MR3.

17/1403 at 4:1 +3 a 1 is rolled for another DR. Nazi dice! A 4-6-6- retreats to safety, no US advance.

17/2202 Two SS PzGren X defend a woods hex. Flak aborts two US GS air units to hold odds at 7:1 -2. A 5 is rolled for a DE.

Theater losses 42 German DF, 16 US DF.

Allies overrun the 10 F PzGren cadre and end with an almost straight North-South line from Le Treport to the Swiss border, US to the north, Commonwealth in the south. Most hexes are held by 20-25 DF, each with some ATEC, many with full ATEC if taking into account the arrival of Allied Infantry AT weapons on Sep I 44. When German Strat Air is returned 5 ARPs are paid and 6 non-Strat Air fighters are withdrawn to cover losses.

Player-turn losses: Germany 69 DF, all unisolated; US 16 DF, British 4 DF.

Comments

Germans are suffering from several turns of cumulative attrition, and the front will get longer now that the Allies have reached the bend in the Channel Coast at Le Treport. Infantry RPs are running low, and the Luftwaffe is about to withdraw large numbers of aircraft from the Tactical Order of Battle. The Luftwaffe strategic air call-up had only minor effects on the ground war, However, bad weather is only a few turns away, and the Allies are still forcing only a slow advance. The French capital will be moved to Paris, making a third Allied contingent. The very manageable Commonwealth losses come at a cost in flexibility. The long wait behind the upper Rhone is over, and we may see the Germans picking out their favorite Canadian, Polish and French targets.

 

Jun I 1944

German Player Turn

A national emergency is declared and all replacements are diverted for use
in the West, North and South front. Goebells proclaims Total war and
demands the utmost from German workers in producing supplies for the front.

France – Units are reinforced and strengthened. Britanny is stripped of
defenders who admin move/rail to the Loire line. The Strategic LW is called
out again, the fourth time for the year and is used by the Germans to launch
a series of desperate attacks. The Allied commander in his bunker outside
Madrid sneers in disgust as news begins to arrive from the front of frantic
German activity – surely the death throes of the nazi regime!

Carefully hoarded Pz and PzG units are unleashed onto the unsuspecting US
units in the beachhead. Three attacks are launched, the first at the
salient south of Le Treport by several corps of German Pz and infantry units
– with +1 AECA the US forces are thrown back in a 1.5:1 DR result causing
numerous casulties as troops are captured unable to squeeze past the german
patrols (ZoC scam!)

The second attack is by the reformed Pz Corp based on Lehr and 21st XXs
attacks Boulogne which is defended by a single infantry XX, engineers and
seige artillery with no Anti-tank units. The LW holds off most of the
allied DAS and the town falls again to a 1.5:1 attack (DE).

The third attack is against the salient west of the beachhead by several SS
c/m and infantry units. Overhead another massive air battle rages but most
of the units flying DAS get through. 19 points of German AA sends several
air units crashing to the ground, but enough remains to keep the odds down
to 1.5:1 with no modifiers. It doesn’t matter as the Germans roll EX and
with ZoCs extending to all possible retreat hexes, a whole US corp is
butchered.

In Madrid, the Allied commander weeps. Surely it can’t get any worse than
this? Well yes it can.

In Bourges, the Guards Corp is surrounded by the 1st LSSAH, 2nd DR, 17th
GbV, 26th Pz and various German riff raff. With the corp in such an
advanced position, the only effective means of supplying DAS is Mustangs
flying out of England and bombers. All non-strategic Luftwaffe units fly
interception/GS on the battle. British AA sees off a large amount of German
GS lowering the odds down to 1.5:1 -2ATEC, +3 AECA = EX with a ZoC scam.
The best of the British marches off to join their US compatriots in prison
camps in Germany.

To add insult to injury, the c/m units in Italy destroy the advanced US
Armored cadre south of Florence while SS, SS Police and RSI militia surround
and destroy the mountain units west of Rimini in a ZoC retreat scam. They
then shuffle about to restore a rather decent line in Italy and the
immediate threat to Arno line is stopped.

The only spot of sunshine was a failed infantry attack from Toulon and
Marseilles on US paratroopers (AS).

The Allied high command surveys the wreckage – four 1.5:1 attacks result in
the loss of some 35+ Allied units destroyed, several hundred planes aborted
or destroyed, the thrust from South West France temporarily blunted, the
Italian defences restored and the beachhead reduced by 50% in size. The
German commander offers the Allied commander a glass of scotch.

In the exploitation phase, the Loire lines are strengthened.

Allies Player Turn

The drill halls are busy churning replacements for the lost units. British
AT units are disbanded and the pools of reserves pretty much drained. More
US units are landed to strengthen the beachhead where the Germans in
Boulogne are surrounded and destroyed by heavy GS (DH and ZoC scam).

A cautious British advance continues to the Loire valley while mopping up
continues in the rear. Several advanced airbases are built to bring fighter
cover closer to the lines. The drive on Lyon continues with Etienne falling
to the 7th Armoured who exploits through to just outside Lyon, defended by a
pathetic looking cadre. North-east of Sete a Anglo-French attack on a
German corp dug in the forests fails to dislodge them.

Cote d’Azur – French Armour arrives at Cannes to join a drive by the FFL 1st
towards Toulon and push the German infantry defenders back. North of here
the 1st A/B XX drives towards Marseilles and pushes the German infantry back
to the outskirts of the city where in the exploitation phase the French
armoured unit arrives to threaten the city. Along the Italian border Mtn
and Special Forces ooze along the border into the mountains. The German
CinC is disgusted by such cowardly game play.

Italy – The Polish 1st Armoured attacks across the Arno at its mouth into
Pisa and forces back the German infantry XX defending it. South of here the
remaining german cadres are mopped up by Polish and US Infantry with the NZ
Mech XX doing ZoC scam duty. Elsewhere the US forces are shuffled about
ready for the offensive soon to follow to breach the Arno fully and drive
onto the Po River before mud returns.

Sep I 44

Weather is clear everywhere, sea zones are calm.

Axis Player-turn

All units are in supply. Luftwaffe Tac Air loses a net 28 air units, while the Strat Air OB picks up 12. 10 ARPs are spent to return all fighters to the map. Reinforcements provide a net gain of 77 DF. One WK V garrison unit is activated for +4 DF. Disbanding costs 28 DF and gains 33 Inf and 7 Arm RPs. Reorganizations gain 2 Inf RP and 7 DF. 31 Inf and 8 Arm RPs are spent, 10 forts built or begun. Strat Air is not called up.

SOUTH Theater Axis forces withdraw to the 26/12XX hexrow, form a NODL, and strengthen defenses along the Adriatic coast.

WEST Theater Germany scores another V-1 hit on London, total now 4, costing the British an Infantry RP. In France the line stands along the Map 16/17 border. Hitler orders his troops to cling as closely as possible to Paris. Engineers are now building more forts and repairing less rail hits. A significant number of front line hexes are held by lone Infantry divisions, but the front is continuous with a NODL from the channel to hex row 19XX. No attacks are mounted against the well defended Allied line.

Allied Player-Turn

The French government relocates to Paris – French become a new third contingent. Bordeaux is rebuilt. Strategic Air roll is a 1, level increases to 5. Neither side calls up strategic air assets.

MTO Advancing British troops capture Civitavacchia ehich had max damage from Axis Engineers, but was not destroyed. Six attacks eliminate 11 German DF for 0 Allied losses. A US attack at 26/1320 against 15 DF in a fort and ravines behind a riverwas thwarted by 2 AA which turned back/aborted enough GS to make it a 5:1 -2 attack. Of course a 1 was rolled for an AS. However, 5 of the 8 frontline hexes were pushed back.

ETO More French units transfer to the ETO from Africa and Italy. In eleven attacks from The Channel to Switzerland’s border Allied forces destroyed a LW 7-9-8 Para-Inf XX and cadred 1 SS Pz, 1 SS PzGren and six Infantry Divisions. Allied units show little fear in advancing this turn, though there is little opportunity to more than advance after combat.

Total German losses for the turn are 70 DF.

Comments

So far the Axis are making the Allies fight for nearly every hex they take, and are paying for that with large numbers of cadred Infantry Divisions. If the Axis can hold out for a few more turns the weather will change to their advantage. I haven’t counted VPs yet, it will be interesting to see what the SEP II 44 count is and how that count would play out if there are no further Allied advances.

 

Comment to date

An exciting time period once the tears had dried in my eyes. As I watched the attacks go in one after the other at 1.5:1 I was incredulous. One or
even two of the attacks causing me damage I could accept, but all four!
Even my DAS let me down (although admittedly it reduced odds from 3:1 or 2:1
in all cases) by falling prey to accurate AA fire. Oh well, never
underestimate the enemy ability to take risks and the curse of the die. The
landing at Pas de Calais lacks the AEC nullifying terrain of Normandy and it
showed when a modifier of +1 was enough to force a retreat into terrain that
was choc-a-bloc with units or in enemy ZoC. As for the Brits in Bourges,
that was just jammy! Watch the flanks!!

The critical factor in this time period was that it again drained the
British RPs and put a dent in the US pool, all this before the German can
convert most of his units to higher defence strength and the really bad
terrain of Holland and the Westwall comes up. The prospect of liberating
Norway are starting to look slim unless the remainder of Italy can fall
before mud/snow chokes up the map, but we’ll have to wait and see.

With two turns (special June turn included in this game) until I could enter
northern Italy and avoid an extra 15 REs of German being released from the
South-east, the German player knew this so the Franco-Italian border was
manned by a couple of amputees with shotguns while five XXs worth of British
and allied units waited to cross the border and flood the Lombardy plain.

The declaration of emergency is a real pain for the allies as it gives the
germans the ability to rebuild a lot of units lost in desperate EX battles
of in holding up the main allied advance. Oh well, Paris will be mine
soon….

Sep II 44

Weather is clear everywhere, sea zones are calm.

Axis Player-turn

All units are in supply. No garrisons are called up. Westwall restoration continues. 33.5 Inf, 8.5 Arm RPs are spent to rebuild cadres & replace units, gaining 43 DF. 3 ARPs are spent to return 1xF and 2x A to the map. 8 forts are quick constructed or begun. Strat Air is not called up. Allies fly 12 levels of harassment in the ETO, 7 in the MTO.

Hitler allows his field commanders to pull back from Paris and form the shortest possible front line. A NODL is formed in France covering all but 2 hexes. All of the Italian front is NODLed. Germany has to be very careful to ensure the minimum strength is met in every hex, mostly this is 7 or 8 DF. Three V-2’s and one V-1 hit London.

Victory point count: Allies collect 27 VPs in the MTO and 42 in the ETO, total 69. There are no excessive losses or other subtractions. Added to the previous count of 72 we have a new total of 141 VPs. If the front s tays where it is for the rest of the war the Allies will collect 69 VPs in Dec 44, March 45, and at the end of the game for another 207 VPs. The resulting total of 348 is a marginal Allied Victory under the revised victory levels. Additionally, this total is 17 short of a substantial victory and 66 short of decisive. There are 9 more VPs in Italy, 9 in France and 13 in Belgium which the Allies should pick up fairly easily. Exactly how many of these are taken for multiple quarterly counts will determine the final victory level (supposing the Allies don’t break either front line).

Allied Player-Turn

All units are in supply. French MR 8 and the Italian province of Umbria are liberated. The ports of Marseilles, Toulon and La Rochelle are rebuilt; rebuilding of Rouen and Sete are begun. 2 NRPs are spent on an Italian TF; US spends 13 Inf and 8 Arm RPs; British, French and Italians each spend 1 ARP. Rail cap in France is increased to 30. Strategic Air roll is a 3 with no DRMs, level increases to 6. Germany calls up strat air, Allies call up both ETO strat air forces.

RAF strat air flies 15 night RMY, scoring 5 hits. US flies A/FB Tac Bombing. Allies conduct attacks along the entire front in France, taking, among other places, historic Compiegne. The Luftwaffe flies a heavily escorted DAS mission for 15th PzGren XX in 16/2532. A FW190G and Me19G6 survive interception, but AA returns the FW. In 15 attacks with several ZOCed out defending hexes the ETO eliminates 89 German DF with no Allied losses. Another 30 German DF are eliminated in the MTO when the Allies take 7 of the 9 front-line hexes, bringing the total German DF lost for Sep II to 119. Even as they collect 23.5 special replacements Germans pray for mud to save their crumbling front. British c/m manage a small advance (2 hexes) in front of the Vosges Mountains during exploitation. Germany spends 8 ARP while returning strat air units to the holding box, many German air units remain in the Elim and Aborted boxes.

Comments

Allies are encouraged by the VP count. They thought hard about conducting a major air/sea invasion of Holland, but decided not to make the landing due to the number of troops this would take away from the main front. Sizeable forces remain in England to threaten such an attack. Meanwhile, they rewrite their airborne landing plans to take out portions of the German NODL.

 

June 1944 Special

C, C

Axis Player Turn

In Italy a few units slip into the mountain passes leading across into
France while the Arno line is strengthened. Theatre Command designates La
Spezia a National Socialist hero city and forms it into a western redoubt,
anchoring the line against the Allied advance.

In France around the allied beachhead at Cannes a slight withdrawal is made.
Toulon is abandoned to its fate with 2nd rate troops holding the fortress
while Marseilles is garrisoned to hold as long as possible. the cadre in
Lyon is strengthened by the arrival of a SS PzG XX and Tiger battalion while
the area around Clermont is abandoned as the Loire line is reinforced as
more and more infantry units arrive. Around the smoking beachhead on
Bolougne the Germans withdraw 16 miles to avoid a three hex attack on their
position to the boos and hisses of the watching allies. From Dunkirk, V-1
rockets scorch across the sky and impact into London docklands, requiring
Fighter Command to beef up its defences.

Allied Player Turn

Calais is assaulted by US infantry and engineers who destroy half the
defenders and force the remaining Eastern Troops to flee along the coast.

At Nantes a joint Canadian-British attack surrounds and destroys the
defenders, cutting across the mouth of the Loire and threatening Brittany.
Around Tours several attacks wipe out some German static units unfortunate
enough to be caught in the growing British advance in the region.
Stragglers around Clermont are gobbled up and spat into the dead pile.

A French attack across the Rhone west of Avignon fails to dislodge the
German defence, especially annoying is the Aborting of 4 GS aircraft by a
single LW AA unit.

The beach head around Cannes is expanded further as toulon is assaulted for
a HX result and the Paras push north west towards the Rhone over the broken
country side.

In Italy, caution is thrown to one side as the border is crossed from France
to outflank the German line.

In the mountain passes several defenders are crushed while Pavona is overrun
by the South African Armoured and other motorised odds and sods while a
Motorised 82nd AB XX attacks and seizes Genoa.

At Festung La Spezia, Poles, Kiwis and Brits attack the city and seize it
courtesy of some heavy GS flown by the USAAF. So much for the invulnerable
redoubt theory. East of Florence, Indian and Polish Mountain units force
back the RSI/SS defenders in the mountains while on the coast of the
Adriatic a US Corp treats harshly a joint RSI/PzG stack and blows it away
for a HX.

In the exploitation phase Milan falls to the Springboks with Mussolini
escaping just in time to take up residence in Trieste. The US 1st Armored
and 34th Motorised Infantry enter Ravenna before swinging inland towards
Bologna.

In France the Canadians advance to Nevers and the 7th Armoured to Dijon.
The bridgehead over the Loire is expanded near Tours and the 1st Armoured
enters Rennes while recon units enter an empty Brittany to seize some minor
ports along the Channel coast.

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