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Everything posted by Krautman

  1. Krautman

    Sniper Duell

    I guess the average sniper's daily life at the front was much more prosaic than the events described in those famous-sniper-guy-(auto)biographies. These are written for people with a special interest in military "action", probably much like a Tom Clancy book or the like. I once read a book by a german publicist and pacifist (Wellershoff, Dieter: "Der Ernstfall"; sehr zu empfehlen) who recalled his youth. As a young man, he volunteered for military service in 1944 (out of patriotism, but also to avoid being drafted) and, with help of his father, a Luftwaffe officer, became part of the Hermann Göring ground forces. He thought that being part of an "elite" unit would increase his chances of survival, but didn't want to enlist in the SS, about which eerie rumours were afloat. After a while of training, parts of the division were moved to italy, others, among them Wellershoff, to prussia. There his company was ordered to defend the "Ostpreussenschutzstellung II" (~"East Prussia defence emplacement II"). Wellershoff and his platoon had to move into a very exposed position in front of the main line for two weeks. There, and here finally is the link to the thread topic, the group came under frequent sniper fire. The men who were shot at were not officers or specialised technicians, but just those who were sent to fetch food or had to go pee- the enemy sniper would pick any target he had the opportunity to hit, then wait a few days until the german soldiers were less careful again. Finally, a sniper was assigned to Wellershoff's group, not necessarily to fight the enemy sniper (though that was also intended), but most of all to kill some russians in return. This was a static front line situation in a rural environment, in Stalingrad it might have been different. Yet i consider Wellershoff's book a great description of what war is like for the individual- he is an excellent writer and knows the human mind, and he has no interest at all to euphemize or heroize anything he describes, which makes the book even more believable and impressive; its focus not being on "action".
  2. All, thanks again for the info. Since when are armies actually divided up into "modern" battalions, regiments, divisions etc, i mean as opposed to the antique and medieval army organisation? Does anyone know why some german NCOs were called Wachtmeister? I thought this was a police rank.
  3. Great info! Do regiments themselves have added support units, e.g. an infantry regiment having an extra artillery battery/battalion? Or is an infantry regiment just a couple of infantry battalions? What about AT guns and HE chuckers? In CMBB, most infantry battalions have ~2 AT guns. How many AT guns would a battalion have if all (if they exist: regimental and) divisional AT guns were distributed among the infantry battalions? (Might be useful for a battalion-sized scenario) And what the heck is a brigade? EDIT: Damn, i guess there are as many different ways of writing "battalion" as there are languages, and i always have to check other posts to get it right. "Bataillon", is that french?
  4. This tool is just awesome, it makes excellent use of the opportunities offered by CMBB, to create a year-long campaign with units gaining (or losing) experience and all that you could miss from the original game. I highly recommend it to anyone here, especially to those who don't have a human opponent. Thanks, Robert, for the great work. However, i had some difficulties using the spreadsheets. I'll have to remember them now since i don't have internet at home, but i'll give it a try. In the rules, it is said that the commanding officer gains experience if he performs well in a battle and gains 60 favour or more. This i did in my last battle, and thus i expected my CO to gain XP. I'm leading a Gebirgsjäger Company, and its Hauptmann is, as you might expect, my CO(carrying my last name). In the spreadsheet, he is on top, and is designated as unit type "IT", as are the other platoon/section HQs. Now, The spreadsheet does not recognise him as the CO, not awarding him the hard-earned XP. How can i get the spreadsheet to accept him as the CO? The rules also offer you the opportunity, besides the automatic bravery awards for outstanding performance, to decorate your soldiers yourself in return for some favour points. I command 24 units, and thus am allowed to "buy" max 2 awards with my favor. How do i do that? Neither in the core force sheet nor in the favour sheet, it seems to me. I hope someone can answer these questions. I'm looking forward to starting my next battle. After my first infantry company, fighting in the area between Don and Donetz, was wiped out in minutes by defending smg squads, i now command a Gebirgsjäger unit of army group south. They are doing fine, some of them have already been awarded the EKII for bravery. They expect to arrive in Baku in a couple of weeks, and their commander is already planning for the victory parade in moscow... [ November 03, 2004, 10:17 AM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  5. I wouldn't say favouring the germans makes you a tactical prima donna. You said it yourself - a german attack on a russian infantry position requires the use of various support weapons, which means a careful tactical approach is required. As you know, using towed guns on the attack isn't really simple. In addition, spending lots of points on support weapons means your infantry force is few in numbers and has to be handled with care. A russian assault just requires infantry massed. The handling of which, no doubt, is also an art in itself. I'm actually astonished at the fact that the russians are underappreciated, as is shown in the "germanophiles" thread. I have started playing with russians recently, and i think they have an excellent array of infantry, support stuff, and armor to chose from. They lack a sIG, but otherwise, from rifle-heavy to pure smg infantry, from great mortars with tons of ammo, and good tanks (the light tanks are really worth a purchase, i found out), the russians have everything. What you mean by "tactical prima donnas" is probably the standard "i want to play a king tiger" gamer, which is not common around serious gamers anyway, i think. E.g. some play mostly "grey period" games, and you can't call them prima donnas at all. Ever done a may 42 defence with rifle infantry, Pak 38 and PzIIIJ shortys vs motorized A & smg squads and T-34M43s? Or a PzII+III steppe assault against T-34s and ZIS-3 guns in trenches? [ June 19, 2005, 01:02 PM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  6. When posing my question i thought of a series of posts in the "anthology of useful posts", describing a H2H QB that had german rifle infantry attacking entrenched russian smg infantry in heavily wooded terrain. The attacker got a ~70% victory. I thought before that this was impossible. Sadly, the AAR was not illustrated, and i would like to see this done and HOW it's done. The "proper setting" and the "proper forces" would mean infantry with some support (2-4 Mgs and 1-2 guns per cpy) in a wooded area. Russian infantry is superiour, so seeing the whole thing done against the odds would prove quite interesting.
  7. Krautman

    recherche joueurs

    Bonjour, Monsieur! Beacoup des gens ici ne parlent pas le Francais! Essaye utiliser l'anglais. Ca ira.
  8. Very impressive, losing only 7 men in an infantry-heavy meeting engagement. Do you think you could do that the other way round, with, say, regular or veteran german rifle 41 squads against green russian rifle 41, rifle 43 or maybe recon/motorized A squads? And possibly - smg squads? Greetings Krautman
  9. Yes, that's correct. You might also want to check out the OSF large wooden buildings. Andreas: That's a slight degree of simulation more than i demand! At least their lives ARE only digital, and their parents and wives are not even binary-coded. They should be happy to sacrifice their virtual existence on the altar of General Krautman's everlasting glory. Maybe writing letters to parents and wives will be included in the next CM game, together with Kommißbrot and Machorka. Edit: And, of course, Karlgerät on-map artillery! [ June 17, 2005, 12:27 AM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  10. Thank you for the feedback. Well, i'm sorry i could not crown the AAR with a glorious total victory. Maybe General Krautman is just too cautious with the digital lives that he is responsible of. I have some comments left: I never used that much artillery to provide smoke. Usually, i see it as a waste to not drop HE on the evil enemy, the suppression might keep them from firing at my soldiers just as the smoke cloud did, and i could advance the infantry while the enemy is pinned. But 75&81mm suppresion isn't that effective, so i decided on the smoke. But i've never run tests or so to try the effectivity of smoke. I think when laying a smoke screen, you have to consider three parameters: Density, size and durability. My smoke screen was effective in the way that it allowed the infantry to advance, but there were gaps in it that the enemy could fire through. Shifting the fire from one place to the other increased durability and size, but made the screen less dense. About the force mix: It was the realistic choice of units that drew me to the scenario, besides its early war setting. That doesn't mean i do not like blasting PzII's with KV-2s, but, occasionally, i need a scenario that gives you this feeling of "this is what it could have been like". This is a nicely designed scenario of considerable difficulty, but i guess with some practice, one could take at least one small flag (southern hill, close to wheatfield), and the large one. A nice scenario for players that demand a challenge. The strange turn number - 37 instead of maybe 35+ or 40 - indicates that Andreas did quite a bit of playtesting. Well done, Mr Biermann. Now if you'll excuse me, i'll design myself a nice little scenario for recreation that depicts an attack by General Krautmanov with an elite smg company, some 122mm spotters and a KV-2 platoon on a depleted german rifle company in mid-41. That'll be fun.
  11. Ok, but let's talk about the scenario, and not about this specific battle. At first glance, the map didn't seem that impressive to me. I mean, it is nicely done, but there's nothing really special to it. But during the course of the game, i realised this map is cleverly done in terms of gameplay. The map offers three approach lanes to the attackers: One, to the left or northern side, one in the center and one through the wheatfields in the south. The leftmost lane forces you to cross quite a bit of open ground, but there is a forest in between so that you can rest. Nevertheless, it seemed to be the most dangerous path, which is why i sent only one platoon through there (It was Lt German's, which also took the most casualties.) The central approach is covered by the pine hill (where the support teams were in) and cannot be overwatched by the defenders up until quite close in front of the village- Of all three lanes, it has the shortest distance to be crossed under enemy eyes. Furthermore, it offers a huge "brushes" area were attackers can find some concealment, so that you can send in two platoons at once. Therefore, i decided on getting a whole company through there. The last approach lane leads the attackers through the wheatfields. These offer considerable concealment, but the attackers have to walk a long, long way. Thus, i sent only two platoons through there. What i did not at all think of was this: A force advancing through a central map area will usually be visible to most defending units on the map, while advancing on the flank may keep many eyes from ever seeing the attackers, simply because the LOS is blocked. The wheatfield flankers, as i called them in the AAR, were never subjected to heavy fire and took the fewest casualties of all attackers, even though they had no smoke to cover them. The southern hill prevents enemy units in the village or on the northern hill from spotting units in the wheatfield, which makes this approach lane very useful despite the long distance to be crossed. Thus, every approach lane has its advantages and disadvantages, which makes a truly "balanced" map, if you can say so. Apart from that, the area close to the dug-in tanks offers good cover- forest on the left and rocky ground on the right side of the village. And, what is also helpful, the tanks can't move. This makes it easier for the tank-hunters to do their task, and a succesful infantry attack on a tank is always a highlight in a battle. The scenario design helps you to get such a highlight.
  12. Well, this is a bad thing. I was so close to taking the big flag- two squads were defending it, but they were out of command and already pinned by hMg fire; they would've fallen to Lt. Kraft's almost full platoon. Maybe I wouldn't have taken the flag, but i had at least denied its possesion to the russian commander. Same with the other small flag on the northern hill, it was only defended by a few remaining infantry guys low on ammo. It is a shame that this game -so far very exciting- ended this way, i feel a little bit cheated. I didn't know an auto-ceasefire could happen while your morale is still high. I don't think i hit the ceasefire button accidentally.
  13. That's the situation: Lt German's platoon is stuck, meeting fanatical resistance. But in the center, resistance is crumbling. A last Maxim Mg hidden in the debris will be overrun. An apparingly exceedingly brave or fanatic infantry squad that sucked up a platoon's ammo loadout will be close-assaulted, and Lt Kraft will proceed to take the large flag. A well-aimed grenade takes out the Maxim. Finally! This Mg took a heavy toll on the attackers. The bravely defending russian squad is taken out, too. Now the attack on the northern hill can begin! One minute to go: Lt Kraft and his men are very close to the large VL. They know they can make it. With a maliciously evil german laugh, General Krautman gives the orders -advance at all costs- and leans backwards to await the outcome. But then, something unexpected happens: "Both sides agree on a ceasefire" - This cannot be! General Krautman's men refuse to obey his orders! But why? Losses haven't been that terrible! General Krautman's face turns red as he screams in agony.
  14. Assaulting the Maxim MG positions: The crews are shocked to be attacked from behind. An infantry squad appears out of somewhere from the woods, but they are too late to save the Mg position. Destroying the MG positions has taken a lot of enemy fire from the men in the center of the village, and the advance continues. Everyone rushes to help for Lt German's platoon, which is in deep trouble by ongoing russian conterattacks. Taking cover in the building is Lt German, lying wounded next to him is OG Altmann. The platoon is now down to ~40% strength and low on ammo. But help is on the way: Firing and tossing hand-grenades, another platoon approaches the northern hill. They can already see the victory flag shining through the trees. On the southern hill, Lt Kraft could also see the very same flag, had he the time to do so. But his task is to defend the flag behind him against viciously assaulting russians. He orders his men to drive the russians out of the forest once and for all. With hand-grenade, knife and folding spade, the brutal job is done.
  15. That's the plan for the next turn. "TH" means tank- hunter team. Attacking the northern hill: Lt German and his men take out a grenade launcher position, but are taken under fire from higher ground. Suddenly, the russians counter-attack: A bunch of infantry tries to push the germans back. OG Altmann, the brave tank hunter, is wounded. In the center, each step forward is dangerous: Uffz Albert's squad is taken under fire from the remains of a collapsed building nearby. The Mg and PaK teams on the pine hill try to support the infantry as good as possible. And their support is needed: Advancing northwards. This shot is taken from the southern hill watching westwards; as you can see, the defenders had a good view of the central approach lane (white arrow). On the pine hill, you can detect the muzzle flash of a PaK 36. The plan is changed: Some annoying Maxim Mgs have been located at the forest edge on the southern hill, and the platoon that was supposed to go for the large flag is ordered to hunt them down instead. The green arros indicate advance moves. In the center, nearly everybody is advancing, so there are no arrows there in order to not confuse everything. [ June 12, 2005, 09:19 AM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  16. OG Hof happily volunteers. Ahead of him is a long run. -On the left, no further progress is made. In the center, at least two squads have reached the village. The german units taking the hill have relieved them of the massive firepower put upon them. The platoon leader collects the rest of the platoon and leads the men right into the village, where their comrades need support. This is the brave tank hunter OG Hof: Neglecting all considerations, he dashes forwards at full speed ("fast"), while his platoon mates follow him and provide covering fire ("assault"/"advance"). A soviet infantry unit is hidden behind the tank, but supressed by the advancing platoon's fire. The tank gun seems to be pointing directly at him! PaK shells shatter on the tank turret, and all around OG Hof, gunfire and the screams of berserking men are heard. But the veteran tank hunter keeps his concentration. With all possible force, he throws the Panzerwurfmine. It hits, but -no effect! With trembling hands, OG Hof primes a second mine, aims and throws: Obviously, he hit the ammo storage! This is the situation as of turn 31: Time is running out! The right flag is taken, and the men will proceed to the large flag in the rear. In the center, progress is slow, but steady. But SLOW! On the left, support is needed. To the lower left, you can see a second platoon coming to help- General Krautman moved them away from the center, where they are not needed. Well, i hope you enjoyed it so far. General Krautman, although close to a serious heart attack, surely did. Expect more on friday. [ June 07, 2005, 01:17 PM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  17. The current situation: Fierce fighting and assaulting on the left side. In the center, General Krautman proposes to his men the opportunity of a glorious deceisive assault instead of lying around in the brushes (see arrows; some squads advance, some provide covering fire). On the right, the wheatfield platoons split: One will move towards the flag on the hill, the other one will overrun the Maxim. As always, General Krautman's orders are being obeyed immediately: Assaulting the Maxim. It is taken out seconds later. Taking hold of the forest hill with the first flag: An enemy infantry counterattack is repulsed. And, in the center, a first squad reaches the village: Hooray! General Krautman jumps up from his chair and claps hands ecstatically. But: the other squad that was supposed to follow got supressed and crawled back to the brushes. Furthermore, the northern hill (where the first T-34 was destroyed) is too heavily defended to be taken by a single depleted platoon: No forward move is possible. At least the wheatfield platoon that moved onto the forest hill advances: Numerical advantage enables flanking moves, and the first flag is close nearby. Also, the destruction of some infantry + MGs guarding the forest edge relieves the guys in the center, who where taken under fire from there. Now another problem arises: The PaK are nearly out of AP ammo. If the tank crew ever should get that ringing out of their ears, their shotgun-style shells could make mincemeat out of the attackers. Thus, someone has to be found to do the dirty work. [ June 07, 2005, 01:14 PM: Message edited by: Krautman ]
  18. Back to where the first T-34 is: The germans at the northern village entry have finally defeated the russians in the small forest. None of them surrendered, they all preferred to die. But the T-34 is breaking the back of this assault: OG Altmann knows what to do. He grabs his comrade and his AT throwing mined and runs for the tank, constantly under fire by enemy infantry. Suddenly his comrade is hit. Cursing at this day, OG Altmann primes the Panzerwurfmine and throws. And it hits home! The crew abandons the wreck immediately. But there is still a second tank to deal with. The PaK crews, knowing how easily their guns slice through russian armour, take aim and fire. But something seems to be not working out today, as the tank crew doesn't bail out! But nevertheless, the PaK fire is most valuable: The tank crew is obviously stunned by the continuing crash of shells against their turret, and the wheatfield flankers can move in to take out that most annoying Maxim in the scattered trees. With the northern T-34 gone, the men can finally assault the village. But each step forwards has to be fought for viciously. And the wheatfield flankers reach the scattered tree line! Now the first hill, with a small flag on it, is near. But in the center, nothing works out as it should. The men are merely crawling forwards and backwards through the brushes, trying to find cover from the enemy fire.
  19. The infantry at the northern village exit: They don't care about the smoke any longer, as other problems have to be solved. A brave russian officer and his MG team, for instance. Or a big, mean dug-in steel monster. The smoke screen fades away! Quickly, the infantry in the center races towards the brushes, accompanied by General Krautman's helpless screams. Soon, russian fire causes casualties. Then, as if there weren't already enough problems, the leading wheatfield flankers spot THIS: A second dug-in T-34 guarding the southern entrance to the village! A second T-34! Mr Biermann, despite your truly enviable last name, you are a somewhat cruel man. At least concerning the area of digital battlefield creation. General Krautman shakes his fist in anger! This is an overview of the situation so far. On the left, the german squad is involved in close quarters battle and taken under fire by the dug-in steel thing. In the center, the complete absence of anything blurring the view of a possible defender causes considerable trouble. On the right, the wheatfield guys are now taken under fire by what appears to be a a Maxim (in the scattered tree line, at the edge of the wheatfield) and the second T-34.
  20. The platoon that advanced across the open on the left side of the village are (or "is"? It's more than one person, so I'm not sure) lucky: A huge smoke cloud arises right in front of the russian infantry that took them under fire. The germans grab their equipment and hurry towards the forest, preparing for a bayonet attack. But what is this? Some dug-in tank unlike anyone they've seen before. It probably ran out of fuel during the german advance and was dug in by the russians to cover the northern exit of the village. "Tank hunters, prepare the throwing mines!", the Leutnant shouts. "All squads, prepare for close combat! Forwards!" This is the situation as of turn 23: In the center, one platoon has reached the brushes and crawls forward; the smoke doesn't provide enough cover. The wheatfield guys on the right are spread out and advancing as planned. On the left, you can see the dug-in T-34 and, below it, the defending infantry whose sight is now blocked by smoke. Under its cover, the attackers dash in. An Mg opens fire right ahead of them! Fierce close quarters fighting commences at once. The russians are staunch defenders and will not give ground. In the meantime, the smoke screen has reached its maximum density. The assault continues in the center - a second platoon has been brought forwards - and to the south, in the wheatfield. That is the current situation - trouble in the north (left side), some relief in the center, and nothing new on the southern wheatfield front. Yet the smoke arty ammo has been used up; the screen isn't gonna hold much longer.
  21. Tactical analysis is always welcome, i just don't have the time to do it myself, at least until the scenario is finished. The command bonuses are pretty good. I bunched the infantry up in order to keep them inside the narrow approach lane that can't be taken under fire from the village or the two hills. Apart from that, it should be mentined that General Krautman is at times somewhat sloppy with his infantry orders. The two company HQs stay with the support units on the pine hill; their combat bonuses might prove useful to the HMGs. --- While the FOs establish contact to the artillery and check coordinates, the flankers on the right have almost reached the first line of scattered trees. They can already see the southern hill that has to be taken. One minute later, the first smoke rounds show effect. As soon as the smoke is dense enough, the first infantry platoon dashes forward, covered by the HMG platoon and the mortars. Simultaneously, the flankers on the right (southern) side of the village commence their assault. At last, the single flanking platoon on the left leaves the safety of the forest and advances across the open. But the smoke covering them is not dense enough! From the small piece of forest that lies ahead of the men, russian infantry opens fire. Likewise, the men using the central approach route are subjected to heavy fire from the village and the hills nearby. They try to find cover among the brush. Only the flankers on the right are not fired upon: As fast as they can, they run forwards.
  22. Another couple of minutes later, the left flank units have reached the safety of a small forest. You can see them on the left side of this picture. The MG that took them under fire has also been located. A second Maxim joins in, but no one is injured yet. Finally, the sweating PaK crewmen have pushed (i guess IRL they pulled) their guns into position. The FOs have laid their wire- the support group is ready. Now everyone is waiting for the flankers on the right to move through the grain and towards the village... General Krautman decides on creating a smoke screen and orders the FOs to contact the arty in the rear. Yet suddenly he is reminded of that thing that some of those really well animated 3D-characters in General Krautman's flat-sharing community call "reality" or "real life". This "reality" has an amazing resolution, but is so horrendously time-consuming to get through with. Sighing and cursing his unjust fate, General Krautman leaves the eastern front and returns to more prosaic stuff.
  23. Krautman

    Ode to theTank Hunter team...

    In my experience the panzerfaust's EFFECTIVE range is also very different from it's MAXIMUM range- maybe about 2/3. E.g. for a PzF60 to be accurate, you should try to get a 40m or less distance.
  24. Krautman

    Ode to theTank Hunter team...

    Another Wurfmine fan! Yes Generaloberst, the Panzerwurfmine is accurate & quite effective. I'd consider it the best available tank hunter weapon, i prefer it even to a Panzerfaust 100 (Throwing this thing won't pin you when inside a building)