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Luchesa Operation Underway

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For those who were so kind to help with my research on this Operation Mars battle, I thought I'd update you on my progress (or lack thereof):

I initially decided to try an operation to capture the entire early part of the action, from about Nov 27 > Dec 2, on a slightly reduced scale. I quickly realized that for it to be playable I would have to divide it into two operations, covering the North and South sides of the river. I got started on a 4x5 km map depicting the south side of the valley, and was optimistic until I looked at the historical forces more closely:

The Germans in this sector essentially had a reinforced grenadier battalion, with heavy support weapons, AT etc....ok, that's quite manageable in an op. But according to my maps, On Nov 30 and Dec 1 the Russians threw at them 2 tank brigades, 2 motorized infantry brigades, and an additional tank regiment! :eek:

I am having a little trouble scaling the action to something playable. I think I need to keep the German strength near a full battalion to cover the wide front, but if I use the historical ratio of forces the Soviet side will be unmanageably huge. Let me ask the forum: in historically based scenarios like this, are people more interested in keeping the historical force balance, or in maintaining playability, and some hope of victory for both sides?

And more fundamentally: is anyone interested in playing an op of this size, at all? Due to the force balance issues I am considering breaking the action up into a few smaller scenarios (or ops) where the force balance might not be historical, but more playable.

Perhaps the depiction of large battles like Luchesa Valley in their entirety will become more manageable when team play arrives with CMX2. I can imagine 4 Soviet players ganging up on one German in this one...

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I've got the Glantz book on Mars which I think is the one covering that action. I thought it'd be great for a campaign idea or op.

For my .02, if you're going for an historical operation, keep it historical. Isn't there an option in operations design to add points to one side or the other to balance this very type of operation?

In other words, if the Germans lose a lot of ground and a lot of troops, they could still win, depending on how many Russkies buy the farm and exactly how much ground they yield.

I could be totally wrong. It's happened before!


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I just browsed through the editor and, indeed, I was wrong. You can assign a positive or negative point bonus to the Axis side to make up for an otherwise unbalanced situation, but only in a Battle. For an Operation, it would have to be balanced by design.

Thinking of that, flag placement, reinforcement schedule, terrain, defensive positions, TRP's etc, seem to be the best way of going.

I'll be looking forward to it.

Good luck,


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