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American historical OOB in 1941.


Iron Ranger
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Presently the USA starts with a much larger army and smaller navy then historically she should have in late 1941. My understanding for this is to make invading her very problematic since sea transport is so cheap and the Alantic so small.

However with the "no landing on major power" house rule I wonder what effect on game play we would see if we forced a 'historical' OOB.

Step 1 - If axis transports are visable from USA no change (armys are called up National Gaurds units ready to defend the eastern coast line.

Step 2 - Disband the four armys (110MPPs each)

Step 3 - Pregame USA is given 1240MPPs using editor

Step 4 - On turn 2 (one?) USA builds: BB Texas (630MPPs), Bomber 8th Strategic Group (525MPPs), BC ????? (525MPPs)

Does this OOB seam closer to the Historical one? The Bomber might be alittle overkill but I thought this would be more blanced then the Wasp Carrier Group.

Doing this would stop any real chance of conducting Operation Round-up and reduce the 1942 invasion of France to a minor raid. Using FF units more then likly. This might spell the doom for Russia as the need to take the pressure off them is great in 1942 and with this map, Operation Torch is close to meaningless and holding Epypt is impossiable, so no easy second front can be established with supply. I would like to try this as a HR but I think you'll need several supporting HRs to provide balance to both sides.

[ August 08, 2003, 09:52 AM: Message edited by: Iron Ranger ]

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Replace the 4 Armies with a Strategic Bomber, Battleship and Cruiser. That's sounds better and should definitely be considered for SC2 setups. (If only we could edit USA setup now!) Maybe leave one Army and not add the Cruiser?

With a bigger Atlantic and perhaps some more realistic restrictions on Axis capability for trans-Atlantic invasions (like none), the historical OOB should work well. In current games where the UK's Royal Navy takes a beating and U-boat wolfpacks roam the seas, the two Battleships of the USA are usually inadequate.

It will be interesting to see some feedback on this scenario.

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I'll leave the issue of naval units and strategic bombers to the rest of you.

Taking into consideration the relative combat power and the fact that we are operating with generic units, this would be the historical US OOB 1941.

One (1) Army

Two (2) Tank Groups

One (1) Corps

One (1) Air Fleet

The only problem is with the Tank Groups. While the US has armored divisions, in 1941 they did not operate like the German armored forces. SC doesn't really have a unit to properly reflect them, so Tank Groups will have to do.

The above OOB reflects the fact that of the less than forty (40) combat divisions the US had, only sixteen (16) were considered "combat ready". Those where the units that where tapped to go to the UK as the First Army.

[ August 08, 2003, 12:24 PM: Message edited by: Shaka of Carthage ]

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Aside from the Pacific, the U. S. launched Torch and hit Sicily fairly soon after entering. If you start removing units how long will it takd the active U. S. to build them? True, the Atlantic Fleet was larger, but there usually isn't much of a German fleet for it to contend with.

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As you know JJ, Weltflotte has USA activated, so the force profile could be modified. The set up OOB for USA can be manipulated by activating and then giving or eradicating units. I chose to configure the forces with a lot of 1 strength units which are necessary to build. Using the industrial tech level setting you can control the build time for the USA by calculating how long it will take with 180 MPPs per turn for them to raise an effective force. I find it usually takes about 8 turns with level 5 Ind. tech.

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SC doesn't really have a unit to properly reflect them, so Tank Groups will have to do.
True. SC2 should probably have something like Mechanized Corps units, about half the strength of Tank Groups (like the Corps/Army relationship). Then two mech corps for USA would be OK. For now, maybe just one Tank Group?

A third Battleship may be unnecessary, but the Strategic Bomber should be considered.

As for the buildup for Torch, the USA only needs a couple of ground units. It really needs to buy an HQ, and that will take several turns. That would impose a realistic delay.

So USA OOB might look like:

1 Corps

1 Army

1 Tank Group (or 2 Mech Corps)

1 Air Fleet

1 Strategic Bomber

2 Battleships

This seems reasonable. In fact, a Pearl Harbor scenario starting in December 1941 with the USA at war with the revised OOB and the USSR preparing to launch its winter counter-offensive would be interesting. Hmmmm. This smells like a weekend project. ;)

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SeaMonkey

Agreed, and I like the way you set it up in the scenario, but I think the discussion here is to just delete them from the game and I'm wondering when, if that's done, the U.S. can actually contribute to the European land war. By the time they get there with units built from scratch it might all be over!

In this case I think Hubert made the correct decision; the U. S. uses it's MPPs in building HQs for the existing armies, and then it's ready to really enter the war as a power. Naturally, without a Russian Winter to help them, the Soviets are usually on their last gasp, but that's a separate issue.

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The problems with Russia, and having the battle of Stalingrad as an almost garentied loss, is where the other supporting HR come in (higher tech, forced ST).

Do you really think that USA should start with two tank groups? I could see two mech corps (add one to the above OOB). But the Lees and Grant tank were alot poorer then the Sherman (closer to Pz II and Pz III) and that tank was a joke compared to the std german tanks (one on one).

Operation Torch was mostly a British affair, as far as I know we only supplied one Mech corps (ground troops, not including air and navy) for this operation (II corts would do fine). As far as preping for additional units, Dec of 1942 is a year away and over 3000 MPPs of production that the allies could build with , if dealing in historical dates only. In looking at the game and early entry of USA, you might be looking at closer to Dec 1941, but even then getting one or two corps into action should be a problem.

On the navy I think we have to look at supporting and offensive action. Defending against the axis subs/combined fleet is nice but most players never go that route (air power is much more important). With the extra three BBs and one BC the allies can conduct offensive action in both the Med (if they still hold Gabralter) and continue aggresive raids around England. Presently there is not enough Naval power to be aggresive in both regions, and that just doen't seam right for two of the top navies in 1942.

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Bill Macon

Right, Mechanized unit would be correct. But I think you may have just solved something I have been struggling with for months.

For generic SC units, Mech = 1/2 Tank Group.

Then, in the US case, instead of two Tank Groups, just the one.

Thank you. ;)

Everyone

I also agree that the buildup for North Africa is best represented by the US having to build a HQ.

Iron Ranger

I thought I knew, but now I am not sure. What does "ST" represent?

You make a valid point about tank comparisons, but you also have to be careful because those comparisons start to bring up the starting Heavy Tank techs, which then brings up that the starting point for the Germans is '39, but the US is '41. Here is my take on the Hvy Tank techs.

Germany and US should be the same. Italy, UK and France should be one (1) less. Russia should be one (1) more. Hence...

Germany.... 1

Italy...... 0

UK ........ 0

France..... 0

US......... 1

Russia..... 2

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ST = SIberian Transfer, my 'hot button'.

I feel providing any tank groups to USA in the early game is out of historical balance. Yes, they had Mech divisions and that could be represented in the two corps (+1 AP over armys) but they didn't have the 'operational consepect' for large armored units until 1944 (?)

I just put together a senerio starting Dec 1941, anyone interested in play testing it? The battles around Moscow will be the hardest to simulate.

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You make a valid point about tank comparisons, but you also have to be careful because those comparisons start to bring up the starting Heavy Tank techs, which then brings up that the starting point for the Germans is '39, but the US is '41. Here is my take on the Hvy Tank techs.

Depending on how you look at it you could justify almost any number. Dates included in my thoughts

39 40 41 42 43 44 45

France 1 - - - - - -

UK 0 0 0 0 0 0/1 1?

Germany 0 0 1 2 3 3/4 4

Italy 0 0 0 0 - - -

USSR 0 1 2 2 2/3 3 3

USA 0 0 0 0 1 1 2

Very hard to compare, looking at Equipment, Admin, Operational use, Training, Quality of Equipment (SPC?) ect.....

The largest problem is with the "advance one tech and all you units get an upgrade". I've seen several games go both way and prefer with you need to return the unit to the 'shop' and pay alittle more to get an existing unit to the next tech level.

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Iron Ranger

The US had four (4) tank divisions. You just can't count them under a Corps, because then you don't reflect the combat power they represent.

Its the same problem trying to represent the US Infantry divisions, which had attached tank and tank destroyer battalions. They had much more combat power than an equiv German or British infantry division. Thats why three (3) US Inf divisions equals a SC Corps.

Since I put two (2) tank and one (1) inf division in a US Tank Group, by itself it ends up with too much combat power because of the lack of doctrine. But assuming its a Mech Corp (which SC doesn't have) and that a Mech Corp is 1/2 the power of a Tank Group, then giving the US a Tank Group representing the four (4) tank and two (2) inf divisions works.

Siberian Transfer ... Under your first House Rule, how do you force the ST by March '42?

Heavy Tank Tech ... Since we can't control the tech advance rate, the relationship between the starting points of each nation is whats critical. And be careful with the Germans. The combat power for the ten (10) German Panzer divisions comes from the Pz III, Pz IV and Pz 38. Those models represent tech level one (1).

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We might be talking about different dates, most of what I'm (and I think others) are talking about is the USA OOB in Dec 1941, not what they will become in 1944 ect....

Siberian Transfer ... Under your first House Rule, how do you force the ST by March '42?

Germany must attack deap enough into Russia to trigger this event. Easy to do without a bid and smart use of Armored units. Note: Axis must be smart and attack in the summer or 41, you can't wait untill the readness reaches 100% (unless you've attacked alot of minor or left the border empty). You need to think Stragtegicly and plan your attack.

Heavy Tank Tech ... Since we can't control the tech advance rate, the relationship between the starting points of each nation is whats critical
True, its all luck. Thats why I would start HT for germany at L1, USSR L2 and UK/US at L0 on Dec 1941. It seams that all factors together would bear out these Levels.

The combat power for the ten (10) German Panzer divisions comes from the Pz III, Pz IV and Pz 38. Those models represent tech level one (1).
At what time? The Pz IV D was really a infantry support unit and not until the Pz IV F/H (high volicty 75 (?)) would I move that group to L1 HT. Till that time they would be L0, but have great readness because of the experence and qualiy of the HQ units.

The US had four (4) tank divisions. You just can't count them under a Corps, because then you don't reflect the combat power they represent.

Did the US really have that many high quality, trained, supplyied, and supported units in 1941? My understanding was the ground troops in 1941 were older, poor quality and poorly equiped, ie only good for defensive action. Not untill the Army reorginized in 1942 did you start to see units that would be considered 'combat' ready. I 1941 wouldn't 1-2 Corps and 0-1 armys better represent what the USA could put in the field, plus no HQ support till the spring of 1942. The US high camand was very disorginised comparied to the UK and German staffs in 1941.
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I thought when this Heavy Tank / tech issue was discussed months ago we all agreed that regardless of actual tank specs, the Germans should start with L=1 as an overall evaluation incorporating doctine, anti-tank weapons accompanying their armor, their incorporation of panzer grenediers and the fact they organized all this in mass instead of scattered packets.

How can the Germans possibly have less effective armored units than the the French in 39 and 40? Doesn't leadership like Guderian, Hoth, Manteuffel and Rommel count for anything?

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How can the Germans possibly have less effective armored units than the the French in 39 and 40? Doesn't leadership like Guderian, Hoth, Manteuffel and Rommel count for anything?

Sure it does, buy the Manteuffel HQ with rating 9 and watch the French troops melt under your attacks. Or better yet stick an armored unit in a hole with that support and let the French armys counter attack it to thier deaths. Open road to Paris!

[ August 08, 2003, 07:21 PM: Message edited by: Iron Ranger ]

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Iron

In 1940 most of those generals were division or corps commanders, what I'm getting at is their pre-war preparation should actually be reflected as part of the tech level. The same holds true in Barbarossa, where having heavier and more battle worthy tanks did little to help the Soviets against supperior German tactics and command organization.

In France the only massed armored attack the French managed was very promising, but it has to be considered they were striking at the tail end of a column and DeGaule managed to catch Rommel (at the time commander of the 7th Panzer Division) completely off balance. No allied country had anything equivalent to Blitzkrieg tactics.

Which is ironic because British General Fuller wrote the book on it long before Guderian's Achtung Panzer! and pioneered it's development in actual practice.

On a play level I do have to agree that this is partly made up for by including HQs in the German OB with none in the UK or French armies.

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I think we are trying to split hairs between history, game play and the balance between them.

Yes DeGaul (sp?) did a good job but the doctrine just wasn't there for the French armor. Not running out of gas would have helped alot also.

I think we need to look at the HQs as the doctrine ect... advantage the germans have and go with the equipment for Tech levels.

And your right on the Russians having better tanks but not helping them out much. Against a good player those two armored groups are toast even with L2 HT.

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Iron Ranger

In late 1941, the US had five (5) armored divisions. Four (4) of these went to UK. When the First Army was formed in 1942, it had twelve (12) infantry divisions and four (4) armor divisions. Those sixteen (16) units where in the US in '41.

By 1944, there were forty-three (43) divisions in ETO (2 Airborne, 10 Armor and 31 Infantry). Another sixteen (16) were in-transit to ETO.

The ten (10) German Panzer divisions would be 1940. Pz III, IV and 38 were used as medium tanks per blitzkrieg doctrine. Hence, tech level 1. This allows the inferior Italian tanks and the Pz I and II to be represented by tech level 0. Thats basically how they doubled the Panzer divisions for Barbarossa. Panzer divisions tanks were reduced by half, but that half were the Pz III, IV and 38. Not many new tanks were needed to fill out the original ten (10), allowing the new units to be formed. The Pz I and II's that were removed from the original ten (10) were used as command vehicles, arty FO's and reconnaisance vehicles or retired.

Pz IV with 75mm (which is better than M4 w/75) would be tech level three. The upgrades to the 50mm (long barrel) and bolt on armor, I consider tech level two.

Training and experience are reflected in the SC experience bars. Thats why even though I would bump up the German and some of the UK experience ratings, the US and Soviets would always stay at zero (0).

The "disorganized" US command is best represented in SC by lack of a HQ. Just like the French. Means that the only units the US have that can have immediate effect are the Air and Naval.

HQ's are the leadership advantage. Equipment and doctrine are represented by tech levels and unit types. Thats one reason why the UK should never be allowed to build a Armor unit.

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Shaka, thanks for the info both here and in your e-mail.

Size or US Army in 1941.

Ranked 16th in the world just behind Romania's (2 armys and 1corps in SC). I think a realistic OOB would then be 2 corps 1 army. Disband the other 3 armys and build 1BB, 1BC, and one bomber (extra but no Wasp carrier).

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