Knock on all Doors 'Set 1, Historical "O - Tag" Preiss’ Push'

Discussion in 'CO2 - After Action Reports' started by Daz, May 6, 2016.

  1. Daz

    Daz Member

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    I have decided to start with the Set 1 Historical “O -Tag” December 16th Scenarios.

    The first of which is the northern sector, Preiss' Push.
    I am quite experienced with this part of the Bulge, as its the same terrain as one of my favourite scenarios from the Ride of the Valkyries pack, Elsenborn Ridge.

    In the Knock on all Doors pack however, the map is extended a fair way south and a bit to the west.
    Instead of having the 3 days and 18 hours of the Elsenborn Ridge scenario, we only have 2 days, 11 hours and 31 minutes to achieve almost the same thing!

    The emphasis in this scenario is obviously on exiting your force to achieve further objectives to the west and encircling manoeuvres to the south in the best way you see fit, where as in the Elsenborn Ridge scenario you were forced onto historical routes by the need to capture the numerous set objectives.

    The number of objectives is less than the Elsenborn Ridge scenario, giving you more choice over the route you decide to take to get to the exit objectives.
    What hasn't been mentioned, but has been hinted at by the location of the objectives, is the need to have a substantial blocking force on the northern flank of the map.
    As can be seen by the situation map, this scenario takes place on the northern shoulder of the offensive and strong Allied reinforcements can be expected to enter from this side, including the whole of the 2d Inf Division that have to pull back through Krinkelt and Rocherath, as its the only road out from their offensive operations in the Wahlerscheid area, where they are attempting to secure the Roer river dams.

    KoaD-Scenario-Strat-map.jpg
     
    #1 Daz, May 6, 2016
    Last edited: May 6, 2016
    miya likes this.
  2. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Objectives:
    One of the first things I check is what time the objectives expire.
    All the objectives in this scenario expire at the end of scenario time, so no 'gotchas' there.

    The five secure objectives in the north west quarter, have their points split between occupation and completion, with the Rocherath-Krinkelt objective opening at midday on the first day.

    There is a huge emphasis on speed here. Knowing this map as well as I do, this is going to be a very tough few days for my simulated soldiers :nailbiting:

    KoaD-Obj-map.jpg
     
    #2 Daz, May 6, 2016
    Last edited: May 6, 2016
  3. Daz

    Daz Member

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    There are 5237 Personnel tied into the line units at the start of the scenario and they are well rested.

    Line-Units.jpg
     
  4. Daz

    Daz Member

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    There are a massive 18,603 personnel tied up in the artillery, mortar and IG gun units at the start of this scenario.
    95% of these bombard capable units are fully stocked with ammunition.

    This in my opinion is a very good clue on how to break through the front line, then keep the momentum going for the exploitation phase of the schwerpunkt.

    It would be interesting to see how long a stubborn entrenched unit would last, if you were to focus all that onto one spot :wideyed:

    arty-units.jpg
     
    #4 Daz, May 6, 2016
    Last edited: May 6, 2016
  5. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Supply is reducing over the three days with the first day only providing 10% of the required stocking levels.
    The incoming supply is split evenly between the four SEP's.

    There are four SEP's 1-3 being ground SEP's, but SEP 4 situated at Bullingen, is an air drop SEP.
    This will obviously be high on our priority list for liberation.
    (Edit: This is probably a clever way to simulate the capture of a fuel supply dump, rather than an actual air drop, or was it a scheduled resupply for Von der Heydte paratroopers?)

    Some of the division bases start almost completely empty, but the first routine supply delivery should start in the next 30 min at 06:00 hrs.
    The Regimental bases are much better stocked.

    It's unlikely that we will feel the pinch from lack of supply over such a short scenario.
    So long as the first day's and most of the second days gets though, all should be good.

    Over use of the artillery might well drain the limited stocks rapidly, so its up to the player to make the important decisions on when and where to concentrate their artillery support.

    Supply-at-start.jpg
     
    #5 Daz, May 6, 2016
    Last edited: May 12, 2016
  6. Rake

    Rake Member

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    Looking forward to this, Daz. Now if I could just get into the store to buy it... first (and only foreseeable for near future) day off to play in two weeks, the GF is gone for two days and the store page is down for maintenance :banghead: :rolleyes::cool:
     
  7. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Never mind mate. You can look on enviously at my efforts to do it justice :joyful:
     
  8. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Reinforcements schedules up next.
    I have decided to split them into before 12:00 hrs and 12:00 hrs until midnight on the days they arrive, as there is a lot of reinforcements in this scenario and it was getting very cluttered.

    Reinforcements-morning-afternoon.jpg

    Reinforcements final map-01.jpg
     
  9. Daz

    Daz Member

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    I have just noticed that some of the most powerful units don't arrive on the map until the end of the scenario:eek:

    The two powerful Kampfgruppe's Krause and Sndig for example have a possibility of arriving at D3, 17:00 and the scenario ends at D3, 17:00!
    That can't be right can it? :confused:
     
  10. Daz

    Daz Member

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  11. Daz

    Daz Member

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  12. Daz

    Daz Member

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    What I have been doing tonight is trying to work out what formations I am going to exit and where.
    I have started sorting out the OOB and assigning the armour value to the individual units.

    The total amount of armour value available in this scenario, including that of the reinforcements that arrive in the afternoon of day 3, (which are no good at all as they arrive at best 1 hour before the end of the scenario) is 5678.

    If you look back to the previous image of the scenario objectives you will see there are six exit objectives requiring a quantity of armour to be exited.
    The five on the west edge of the map require 1400 armour each for the maximum points of 12 per objective.
    The exit to St Vith on the southern half requires just 47 armour for the maximum points of 12.
    That's a total required armour value of 1400 x 5 + 47 = 7047.
    So there is a deficit of 7047 - 5678 = 1369 armour.

    Now if we take away the amount of armour entering, at best 1 hour before the end of the scenario, on day 3 which is 1310 armour that leaves us with a maximum possible exit value for armour of 5678 - 1310 = 4368.

    This now leaves us with a deficit of 7047 - 4368 = 2679.
    That is nearly the equivalent of two of the armour value exit objectives 1400 + 1400 = 2800

    So to obtain the maximum points possible with the limited amount of armour available, we can omit at least one of the objectives from our plan for the purposes of exiting our armour.

    The OOB (bottom image) is still a work in progress.

    Exit objective requirements.jpg

    OOB-Arm-val-72ppi-Wide.jpg
     
    #12 Daz, May 9, 2016
    Last edited: May 10, 2016
  13. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Edit: Abandoned this one, see revisions in following posts below.

    Operation map-01.jpg
     
    #13 Daz, May 10, 2016
    Last edited: May 15, 2016
  14. Daz

    Daz Member

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    I have decided to plan the first 24 hours of the scenario, as working through that in more detail will hopefully give me more of an idea as to how the operational plan will pan out.
    Its still a work in progress, same as the operational plan above.

    Edit: Abandoned this one, See revisions in following posts.

    Operation map 1.1-01.jpg
     
    #14 Daz, May 12, 2016
    Last edited: May 16, 2016
  15. Daz

    Daz Member

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    I have made a few revisions to the plan.

    I was concerned that there wasn't enough troops for the capture of Rocherath-Krinkelt, or for holding the northern flank against the US 2d Div that will be coming from that direction.
    So rather than making another path (that will also need to be kept secure) through the forest with the 990 Gren Regt, I have decided to concentrate the artillery and manpower on a narrow breakthrough and larger encirclement.

    Most of our force is concentrated in the south and I think the north is going to be stretched a bit thin. They are certainly in for the roughest ride I think.

    So instead of knocking on all the doors, and diluting the effort, I'm just going to kick in a few :p

    OTPP Plan Phase One.jpg
     
    #15 Daz, May 13, 2016
    Last edited: May 15, 2016
  16. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Phase Two.

    OTPP Plan Phase Two.jpg
     
    #16 Daz, May 14, 2016
    Last edited: May 16, 2016
  17. Daz

    Daz Member

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    I will probably be pressing the play button tomorrow night :)
    I'm going to play until midday D1, or maybe even earlier if the progress is slow, then write up the progress thus far.
    It will take me a couple of nights to write up each segment of the AAR I expect, maybe even longer if I get interrupted by unexpected events as so often happens.
    So I will do it as a work in progress and update the AAR as I get time, before continuing on with the next 6 hours of 'game time' session.
     
  18. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Before I even start, I would like to say right of the bat, that I don't think I can win (decisive victory) this scenario.
    I don't have anywhere near enough forces and have far to little time to get good points from the exit objectives.

    There is a serious deficit in armour for the exit objectives and nowhere near enough time to reduce the pockets in order to free up Anti-personnel firepower, without a game mechanic that allows for mass surrender of surrounded troops as happened historically.
    I don't see this as a major flaw in the game mechanics, as it would be almost impossible for an AI to determine when it was meant to surrender under such circumstances. As a human player, you would always be looking for a chance to break out, or relieve an encirclement and would get mightily upset if the AI started to disband units because it decided to give up :sour:

    So the AI will almost always fight to the last man. Although this was also the case in a fair few historical situations, there is also not an inconsiderable amount that surrendered on mass, when they realised they had no chance of relief.
    The AI will surrender (little square indicator on counter will turn white) in small pockets, but only during actual close contact fighting with an enemy not on mass for being surrounded as happened to the 106th Inf Div's 422nd and 423rd Regt's on the Schnee Eifel.
    Or maybe I won't even get to seal the encirclement? Time will tell.

    I think this O-Tag Historical scenario Set 1, is designed to show you the futility of the Axis plan, its serious flaws and over expectations, in order to lead you onto the 'what if' Sets 2 and 3 to see what may have been required, to achieve some measure of a successful outcome to this operation.

    At least that was my interpretation of the Designers notes.
    If you have a different opinion I would be interested to hear it.
     
  19. Daz

    Daz Member

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    Ok guys, as you have probably guessed I haven't pressed the play button yet :sorry:

    I have been busy on a very steep leaning curve, trying to make a half decent intro video for you and failing miserably.
    I have a lot of sound issues with my microphone, which is just a cheap one as I've not really had need to use a good one before.
    I haven't had time to sort out the media (video elements) yet to synchronise them with the voiceover, so its all very raw.
    I am hoping to have some animated arrows and other filler media to put on there as well so its less static, sometime in the future when I get time.
    I have never had any input on the quality of my narration before either, so if its that unbearable (those German names are hard to pronounce lol) let me know and I will stick to the written AAR's instead in the future :oops:

     
  20. Ripppe

    Ripppe Member

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    Daz, superb stuff as always. Really looking forward to it. However I wish you don't overburden yourself with all of these wonderful AAR thingies. :)

    About the video. I did find the video quite suitable format - for me at least. Voice, pronunciation (can any other than a native German speaker get those names right? ;)) or presentation issues are definitely not game breakers. Though I believe that once you get a better hands on feeling about the whole video editing scene, your vdieos will become even more enjoyable. I'm especially keen on seeing those arrows or other such indicators that highlight about which section of map/unit/plan you are talking about.
     

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