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WIP - "East Prussia defence"


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Following a comment made by Broadsword56 about the use of ATG and some wise remarks made by Erwin, about replay ability and limited tactical choice found in some scenarios, that being largely the result of the map size, I decided not so long ago to start working on a large map, like I have done it earlier and particularly in CMSF.

I have written about this WIP called from now on during its testing preview "East Prussia Defence" till I find or you find a better title for it.

I am given you, below, the link where you will read at leisure, from the first time till now what I wrote about it and what made me think of doing it.

http://www.battlefront.com/community/showthread.php?t=115947

WIP idea first written about on page 4

From this day, till the upload of the scenario this post will be dedicated to it and your comments.

This CMRT scenario will be fought on the German side only, on a 2500 meters wide and 2600 meters depth map. A village has been added and more things will be modified depending on the current testing. Originally I used the "Huge Open Rural" QB map. Thanks Pete for providing it to us.

Cheer

Two views of the battlefield during an earlier testing

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A Pak 43 in defence blasting at far Russian tanks

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The Russian Air Force, looking at that huge crater, is working for the German benefit, bombing its own forces

CMRedThunder2014-08-2218-57-35-43_zps395a1fdc.jpg

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Flak 36 in action

CMRedThunder2014-08-2218-49-41-61_zps6f90a40a.jpg

Reds tanks with mounted assault troops on their way to Objective AA

CMRedThunder2014-08-2218-56-17-54_zps54a92724.jpg

A German relief Kampfgruppe convoy has been sustaining repeated air attacks

That site is currently being finished and modified. Will it have a bridge and or will it be a fording site ? Will the area have some trees ?

CMRedThunder2014-08-2219-02-22-93_zps7a0c130d.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's just about time to give you some news about this scenario. it is almost done and testing has been carried extensively with pretty good results.

This is the good news, the bad one is that I have to leave it aside for nearly a month having to travel. Believe me as soon as I get back I shall upload it very quickly after a last testing run.

In this scenario you will have to fight off with your German forces a Russian armored thrust and its mounted infantrymen. This is not going to be easy, but if you read my briefing with attention and apply the specific tactic that was common to the King Tigers and Nashorns deployment you will fare better and the reinforcement will arrive just in time to mount a counter attack.

I think that this is going to be the first one that was ever permitted to be so effective (thanks to the AI and V 3.0) I can say that Monster Mash will stand far behind once you have played it. I don't mean writing this, that it was not good having enjoyed a lot, the Russian side AI done by George MC when I tested it. It simply is that the more you get accustomed to CMRT V 3.0 the better it is. You will be judge shortly....

Cheer

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CMRedThunder2014-09-0118-47-18-59_zpsa07204ff.jpg

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Looks outstanding !

As a fan of large CM2 battles, I look forward to this with keen anticipation.

If I can add only one suggestion - given the unfortunate tendency for vehicles to do the "elephant dance" on bridges, a ford would probably be the better choice ( referring to the picture in post #2 )

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  • 3 weeks later...

There after is a draft of the notes, briefing and tacticaI advices. Many changes will be done, being abroad right now and having only taken along only a tablet. I should be able to upload the scenario within two weeks from my return on Saturday. Thanks for your renewed encouragements.

I first thought about making this scenario "East Prussia Defence" taking place in August '44, after the reading of "Analysis Deep Attack: Operation Bagration Belorussia 22 June - 29 August 1944" and later "Between Giants the battle for the Baltics in WW II ". I have read over the years many books counting the fierce battles having taken place in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and East Prussia, but due mostly to the lack of detailed maps and well explained Army units OOB, found at the time, I had most of the time, some difficulties getting a comprehensive understanding of the strategic situation. That did not help me much when I was Trying to comprehend the deployments and moves made by the Divisions, their Régiments and battalions. However, the maps found, specially in the first listed book, were a precious help this time. They really helped me a lot choosing the scenario area within the CMRT editor time frame. For the tactics used, both by the Soviets and the Germans forces at battalion level, I have relied on books and training manuals read along many years having a keen interest on history. To be frank it happened that some were read few times along these years. But, every time, I managed, as must as it was possible, to read new ones available on the same subject, adding prime informations to it. It is amazing then, to get sometimes an entirely new view of the way a battle was fought.

In this scenario, You will face a Soviet force close to the ones thrown against the Germans forces deployed in defence following BAGRATION in the area of Army Group North and Army Group Centre North flank, in front of the East Prussia Defense Position which had been hastily defined by Hitler as a barrier for the Baltic, third and second Bielorussian Armies Grroups armored thrusts.

There after a look at the WIP briefing:

Herr Oberstleutnant Raus, You are given command of Wehrmatch Panzer Grenadier Regiment 245. Having taken heavy losses repulsing from never ending Red attacks, it has narrowly escaped encirclement last week, but it managed to break throught, sustaining more casualties, among which its Commander, leaving behind all its heavy weapons, most of its vehicles and assault guns. Your initial orders were to move to Paderborn to have it reformed with replacements and to draw new equipments, Spw's and Jagd PZ IV's. However, due to the critical situation and the lack of available reserve, You will take command of KampfGruppe Raus Battalion which has been formed from PGR 245 remaining infantrymen and incorporated stragglers. It is not at full strength but has been adequately supplied with panzerschrecks and panzerfauts to face the awaited Red armor offensive toward the sea . However, partly in reason of the intense Red air activity and of the delay in rounding adequate transports and fuel, only one company with elements of the HMG platoon and the mortars has been deployed on the reverse slope of the MLR. The reminders are on their way having been replenished and distributed among available trucks and some assault guns attached to your unit. They should arrived within one hour at the most at their deployment area on the road leading to the bridge. Before them, one ATG platoon of 2 Spw 251 tracting 2 Pak 40 is due to arrive wthin half an hour. This deployment area is well protected by some elements of the Flak platoon having been freed from their airfield protection duty, the Luftwaffe jagdbomber and jagdgeschwader having moved earlier to farther less exposed alternate airfields, therefore precluding any possibility of any air ground and or fighters request. You will found, already deployed a strong ATG KampfGruppe. That is, 3 Pak 43 on the centre hill crest, set slightly down hill and on the left flank, 2 Flak '88, reverting to tank defence, positioned along the forest edge and the river. The 2 Flak '88, it is hope will stop and or slow down tanks rushing, either toward the bridge, the airfield or both which might have bypassed the 3 Pak 43's. Besides this important ATG asset, You will be able to move at once 2 King Tigers and 2 Nashorns having just been replenished to full ammo and fuel at their bivouac, They are hidden from air Red ground attack near the centre MLR, all the way down the reverse slope into the forest fringe, overlooking the Rollbahn. The KT's have each a protection Infantry squad, ready to mount as soon as they move out. Regiment artillery will try to respond to any demand made by your FO team already there. Another team will be deployed shortly as soon as their Spw damaged radios will be replaced. In any case, You should have at the less a Nebelwerfer battery available besides your battalion mortars. We are also trying to have a howitzer battery release from Division for your defence.

Division and Regiment HQ have just been relocated and all phones lines are not yet linked. All radio traffic has been shut to hide our movements. That explains partly these partial informations and the apparent lack of intelligence that You are been given Herr Oberstleutnant. You know your orders, rejoin your first elements already there. Your advance Battalion staff HQ is located near the platoons screening the airfield approach. The companies and attached elements leaders have been called there, so that You will lay out a defence plan and decide of the setup for your upcoming last elements. We have just learned that the Red activities tempo is increasing, an attack by many tanks and accompanying Infantries is mostly about to start. Red artillery is already registering on the hill crest. I don't know if You will have time to meet with the elements leaders. Be careful and rejoin immediately your HQ. Herr hauptmann Kartch will prepare and lead the second echelon movement toward the bridge. 2 Jagd PZ IV, 1 Hetzer, 1 Stg III, 1 flame and 1 20mm Spw's have been attached to your Battalion and will come along. He will contact You on arrival and counter attack immediately the Infantry and the tanks at your best designated schwerpunkt.

Designer Notes:

Since You won't have that much time before getting into the battle, my best advice as it was a standard procedure at the time is to recon as much as You can the ground. Try to define the enemy most likely attack axis. Find as much as You can enfilading sites, where You will be able to move hidden from the enemy, your tanks and or Pak guns, as soon as their main thrust is clearly assumed.

During the setup don't forget to place adequately the available TRP'S. You will really need them to adjust a barrage along the hill crest which being a High point is by military standard an important objective which is commandeering the valley access to the bridge, the village, the railtrack its station and the airfield.

About the Nashorns and the King Tigers. Their 88's are an asset when they can engage targets farther than they can return fire. However their large and high silhouette will draw fire on them like a magnet. They might be rapidely immobilized or worst destroyed after having killed one or two tanks at the most. So it is not worth Trying to engage tanks that are so much needed that way. Try to move them in such a way that they will be partly hull down or far from their target with their front slightly offset to 20 degrees in order to have a better deflection effect from an armor piercing shell (that for the KT) return fire. If they are shooting at JS2, they will be better off doing so at their flanks. Many shots unless done at short range will be deflected by the strong tank armor. Firing from an hidden or better hull down enfilading position will be best. Another option is to fire from a farther down slope emplacement at the tanks when they are coming in view at the hill crest. At that moment the Red tanks won't be able to depress sufficientely their main gun and their belly will be partially exposed. That necessitates some nerve to wait till the last possible moment, but it pays off. Another advantage is that the JS2 have a low rate of fire and a small rounds supply compare to yours.........More to come........

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Thanks Baneman,

Just a slight delay. During a final testing I have been unable to designate a target area and or linear one, despites having TRP's . The problem occured with an FO who was able to do this with mortars but not with the Nebelwerfers. rather strange and annoying. You point at the target its works with mortars and with the Nebelwerfers nothing appears on the screen !

I am reversing to 122 mm Howitzer, see if it works and I shall try to find a solution for the Nebelwerfers anyway.

It won't be too long.

Cheer

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There's a bug with the 280mm Nebelwerfers (rocket battery). The 159mm, 215mm and 301mm worked fine, either during the setup or in the game. TRP's allow to have a linear barrage along the defence line as intended.

You will have in any case 2 x 215mm Nebelwerfers, 2 x Howitzers 122mm and 3 FO. one team in a Kubelwagen and the other two in a SPW.

In my last testing, missing the Nebelwerfers barrages, I lost my 2 King Tigers, but they fare well till the end. The Reds tank thrusts were stopped but I was unable to wipe out from the woods the Red Infantry during my counter attack and to regain the high ground. I shall allow a little bit more time to that effect.

Prepare yourself to a bitter fight. Pretty much the way it was at the time.

Cheer

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Testing finished with two Tigers added. You will need them to stop the Red thrust toward your last ditch line before the river.

The upload will come now very soon within three days. Don't be in such a hurry to go into that battle you might end up with a bloody nose eh, eh !!!! that if you don't follow the tactical advices used at the time. They work in the game, that much to say how good it is, close as much as a game can be to reality.

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Thanks Baneman,

The uploading will be done very soon. Meanwhile here are the tactical map and the strategic one.

tacticalmap_zps4befbe2e.jpg

strategic_zps8f662c9f.png

The players must be aware that they won't be able to move any units during the setup. They will be able to order pathways but that will be all.

This has been necessary in order to put the player into a total immersion feeling. Don't worry there is no need to panic. However you will be subject to different tactical choices and you better not make a mistake, since it will be difficult to avoid its consequence. The Reds planes have a total air superiority and they use it as much as they can to prevent your movements. Thankfully you have many Flakvierlings and Flak 36 around to offset their aiming. You have 5 x 88's to destroy as many tanks as you can think of. But, you won't be able to keep it long, so don't put all your faith in their deadly shells.

You will notice that in the briefing there are no reference for that battle. As a matter of fact this battle has been designed from the many ones I have read about and somehow they all had the same touch. The Reds had an overwhelming ratio of forces and the Germans were fighting with their teeth with only a few tanks and depleted Regiment having only the name since quite often they had a battalion strength.

Like it happened at the time, you will be able, to stop the Red thrust with casualties, but you will stop it and they should suffer the utmost and for an insignificant ground gain. But don't get it wrong, the next assault will probably get through, since you only have scarce replacement available, while the Reds, have all they can afford to push into your meat grinder . That was what happened in '44, all the way back to Berlin.

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That guy reminds me of some of my leaders in CM. He's examining the snow and branches 3 feet in front of him through those binoculars isn't he? Probably asking his compatriot - who's snow mod is this?

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