Author Topic: Another Blau I: Stalingrad 42  (Read 313 times)

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Offline MengJiao

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Another Blau I: Stalingrad 42
« on: May 26, 2021, 12:41:16 PM »

  It takes a long time to get to Stalingrad, and you have to start at Voronezh.  Now that's from the Army groups Wiess, South and eventually A and B, viewpoint.  If you look at it and include the area north of Voronezh, -- say from the perspective of 11 Panzer -- you spend your time (after Fall Blau phase I), stopping one big nameless Russian offensive and then Operation Whirlwind (which goes nowhere) and then stopping Romaneko's tank army and then hurrying off to the Chir River where your part of the relief of Stalingrad never happens and you end up stopping Romaneko again just in time to go stop Little Saturn from getting any bigger and by then you are in Army Group Don and you're never getting any closer to Stalingrad.

But -- here in Mid-July in this version of Blau One, things are going well and the Russians are getting smashed up almost on schedule:


Online ArizonaTank

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Re: Another Blau I: Stalingrad 42
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2021, 07:48:56 PM »

  It takes a long time to get to Stalingrad, and you have to start at Voronezh.  Now that's from the Army groups Wiess, South and eventually A and B, viewpoint.  If you look at it and include the area north of Voronezh, -- say from the perspective of 11 Panzer -- you spend your time (after Fall Blau phase I), stopping one big nameless Russian offensive and then Operation Whirlwind (which goes nowhere) and then stopping Romaneko's tank army and then hurrying off to the Chir River where your part of the relief of Stalingrad never happens and you end up stopping Romaneko again just in time to go stop Little Saturn from getting any bigger and by then you are in Army Group Don and you're never getting any closer to Stalingrad.

But -- here in Mid-July in this version of Blau One, things are going well and the Russians are getting smashed up almost on schedule:

So the Germans managed to push a panzer division over the Don... not an easy thing to do. And good job taking Voronezh...a very hard nut to crack if the Russians concentrate there.

Mark Simonitch's "ZOC Bond" series is my favorite set of WWII division level games...and among those, I think Stalingrad '42 is the most fun. I really enjoy the rules... ZOC bonds, determined defense, breakthrough combat, etc. really make the game system "pop" without over-burdensome complexity.

However I have started to wonder if the early part of the Stalingrad '42 campaign and early scenarios are a little on the tough side for Germans in terms of victory conditions.

I have a couple of PBEM games of '42 going right now, so the jury is still out.
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Offline MengJiao

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Re: Another Blau I: Stalingrad 42
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2021, 06:49:23 AM »

  It takes a long time to get to Stalingrad, and you have to start at Voronezh.  Now that's from the Army groups Wiess, South and eventually A and B, viewpoint.  If you look at it and include the area north of Voronezh, -- say from the perspective of 11 Panzer -- you spend your time (after Fall Blau phase I), stopping one big nameless Russian offensive and then Operation Whirlwind (which goes nowhere) and then stopping Romaneko's tank army and then hurrying off to the Chir River where your part of the relief of Stalingrad never happens and you end up stopping Romaneko again just in time to go stop Little Saturn from getting any bigger and by then you are in Army Group Don and you're never getting any closer to Stalingrad.

But -- here in Mid-July in this version of Blau One, things are going well and the Russians are getting smashed up almost on schedule:

So the Germans managed to push a panzer division over the Don... not an easy thing to do. And good job taking Voronezh...a very hard nut to crack if the Russians concentrate there.

Mark Simonitch's "ZOC Bond" series is my favorite set of WWII division level games...and among those, I think Stalingrad '42 is the most fun. I really enjoy the rules... ZOC bonds, determined defense, breakthrough combat, etc. really make the game system "pop" without over-burdensome complexity.

However I have started to wonder if the early part of the Stalingrad '42 campaign and early scenarios are a little on the tough side for Germans in terms of victory conditions.

I have a couple of PBEM games of '42 going right now, so the jury is still out.

   My perspective on this is a bit skewed since what I'm doing is trying to see how much of the Russians can survive.  In this little scenario, they have the option of running for it and they should even if the Germans win the scenario.  Historically they didn't run fast enough so its no real feat to take Voronezh when I'm just trying to keep the Russians intact (to see if the game system will allow it and it does).

   I think Stalingrad '42 is the most enjoyable game on the topic at the moment.  I think the real problem with games about Fall Blau isn't the game systems, its the focus on the attempt by the Germans to do something that is not going to work.  It would be more interesting to shift the focus north (where the Russians launched a lot of attacks with a lot of success and pulled in a lot of German forces -- though perhaps they should have sat tight and let the Germans drive off into the south).  So you'd have the Russian point of view:  Hold Moscow, build up you armies, go on attacking around Voronezh and to the north and let the Germans take a whole army group off to nowhere.  Simpler game.  Smaller map more historically interesting.  So you would cover Stalingrad and north of that to around Orel and you don't have to worry about balancing the impossible quick drive of the Germans off to nowhere with a series of shattering Russian attacks.  Just focus on the Russian attacks as they hit a steadily weakening Axis group of army groups.