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George MC

New scenario for test - Strachwitz at Kursk

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The beta version of our latest CMBB Operation scenario “Strachwitz at Kursk”, Number 4 in “The Panzer Count’s Ostfront” series is now available for testing over at The Proving Grounds.

On the 9th July 1943, Panzergruppe Strachwitz spearheads the attack on the Soviet fortified village of Novossolevka during Operation Citadel.

Historical Background

The last great German strategic offensive in the East, "Operation Citadel", is in its fifth brutal day. The grand German plan to conduct a classic pincers assault to cut off the "bulge" of Soviet forces around the southern Russian city of Kursk has already largely failed in the north in the face of the unprecedented strength and depth of the three-tiered Soviet defences.

In the South, the greatest German concentration of armor in the war has fared better in its effort to cut through to Kursk, but at a high cost. On the right flank, the II SS Panzer Korps has penetrated some 40 kilometers into Soviet defences. On the left flank the 48th Panzer Korps, with Panzer Grenadier division Großdeutschland at the tip of the spear, has broken through most of Soviet General Vatutin's defences and is poised to plunge ahead toward Oboyan on the road to Kursk.

For the "Panzer Count", Oberst Hyazinth Graf Strachwitz, the battle has already been marked by bitter controversy and personal tragedy. At the peak of his prowess as a holder of the Knight's Cross with Oakleaves and Swords, and in command of the veteran and fully re-fitted Panzerregiment Grossdeutschland, Strachwitz had prepared for the battle fully aware of the terrible challenge in front of him, but confident that under his dynamic leadership the panzertruppen would prevail.

However, larger forces had conspired to thwart him at the outset. Hitler's almost magical belief in the superiority of German technology had caused him to delay the Kursk offensive until an array of brand new armored fighting vehicles could reach the front.

However, the Soviet defences were so dense and deep even the audacious Strachwitz could not utilize his cavalry instincts to create a rapid breakthrough. To stop the blitzkrieg the Red Army had fielded new units: anti-tank Regiments, each equipped with 24 76mm AT guns in 6 batteries. The Soviets had calculated that each gun would destroy 2 or 3 German medium tanks before being knocked out-an attrition rate the Panzers could not withstand in the long run. Among the heavy German casualties had been Strachwitz's brother-in-law, Oberstleutnant Graf Saurma, commander of the Regiment's II Abteilung, killed in combat. That only strengthened the Panzer Count's resolve.

But now, on the morning of July 9, with the fall of the heavily fortified town of Verkhopeny'e, the road to Oboyan and beyond to Kursk appeared to be open at last. Before him lay a broad valley with a small village named Novosolevka at the far end, terrain seemingly made to order for another classic cavalry Strachwitz thrust. Was the breakthrough finally at hand? Or had the desperate Vatutin managed to plug the gap with reinforcements during the night?

Designers Notes

Has had playtesting as Axis Vs AI, but given the force make-up should also work out H2H.

The zip file contains a historical background PDF and Strachwitz bio.

Feedback regarding how the scenario plays out would be most welcome J

About the Panzers Count’s Ostfront

Blowtorchscenarios.com proudly introduces our second CMBB series, ”The Panzer Counts Ostfront” following our series on Jochen Peiper’s Kharkov 1942-43 campaign. As always our aim is to present interesting scenarios with as much historical accuracy as possible.

“The Panzer Count”, of course, is the legendary German tank commander Hyazinth Graf (Count) Strachwitz von Groß-Zauche und Camminetz, who survived the war as a Generalleutnant of the Reserve and holder of the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds, Germany’s highest award. We have chosen to focus on another German commander for the same reasons we focused on Peiper: the availability of information, not any political or national agenda. As with our Peiper series, we are devoting great effort to presenting the Soviet side with as much authenticity and detail as possible.

In this series we will try to present a cross-section of his Ostfront battles from 1941 to 1945. We have chosen those battles which, in our opinion, best characterize his military genius while offering interesting and reasonably balanced challenges.

You can get it HERE

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I've played this a couple of times - allied and then axis. I was a bit disappointed playing this as the soviets, as usual, the axis AI is not very good. Playing against the soviet AI was better so you axis players should really enjoy this! Lots of tanks however, if you have a slow system you will spend some time waiting. Handling the panthers takes some experience as they are quite vulnerable on the flanks. All in all, a challenging scenario for the axis player - be prepared to take substantial to heavy tank losses. ;)

Cheers

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Originally posted by Der Alte Fritz:

Hi George

Just finished a test game and posted the results at TPG.

cheers

Cheers for that DAF - reply posted. Many thanks for the detailed feedback - it's much appreciated.

Cheers fur noo

George Mc

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Originally posted by Sportsguy64:

I've played this a couple of times - allied and then axis. I was a bit disappointed playing this as the soviets, as usual, the axis AI is not very good. Playing against the soviet AI was better so you axis players should really enjoy this! Lots of tanks however, if you have a slow system you will spend some time waiting. Handling the panthers takes some experience as they are quite vulnerable on the flanks. All in all, a challenging scenario for the axis player - be prepared to take substantial to heavy tank losses. ;)

Cheers

Oops my aplogies - I missed this post. many thanks for your comments. I've slightly re-jigged the scenario with some more small tweaks in the pipeline. Glad you enjoyed it. I think it is pretty close to being done as it appears to frustrate both sides in equal measure. Just as as the original action did smile.gif

Cheers fur noo

George

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