Part 58: Turn 55: July 2, 1942
New month, new rules. First off the cap on non-motorized guards has been raised to 17% from 10% so all the units that got enough wins to qualify over the last few months promote all at once.
No promotions, just one commander raising the worst stat, bleh.
More men, more mortars, more anti-tank weapons, more AA and better tanks, a good upgrade for our cavalry. The cavalry corps aren't as important as they were back in December-January but they're still a potent force, especially with some extra tanks grafted onto the formation via support units.
The tank brigades get their heavy tank complement ripped out in favor of more T-34s. Those big guns were a holdover from the divisional structure and these guys are never going to see the big tanks again. It's a good thing too, I've got tons of medium tanks in the pool that need to get used and I'm running short on heavies.
The tank corps pick up some extra artillery, rocket artiller and light/medium tanks in exchange for all their heavies. Now the only unit with heavies on their toe is the separate tank battalion support unit.
Eventually we'll get access to dedicated heavy tank support units that can be used to dole out the heavier tanks where they're needed but for now this is the best we've got.
The Hitlerite invaders are gaining ground here, especially near Moscow. 1 hex a turn isn't much but it's enough to reach Moscow before winter.
In a series of incredibly bloody battles the Germans are driven back and all the ground that was lost this week has been retaken. Some of those panzer divisions look horribly understrength, 49 tanks between the Totenkopf and the 8th panzer is pretty low. Even so, they put up a hell of a fight and don't give up easily.
Also, 55 Soviet tanks for 48 German, I'll take that any day of the week thank you very much.
On the western front we take a few hexes. Theres some panzers hanging around here and I'm curious what they're gonna do.
The German line to the north has been stripped to try to maintain integrity further south. I don't think it will work.
Nope, they've critically weakened the line in front of the Bryansk front and I make them pay for it. 9 attacks go off successfully and the integrity of the German forts is shattered. An army of Rifle corps is committed to the weakest part of the line and shreds it, driving 20 miles into the German line before stopping.
The Urals M.D. Joins in with more of the same, driving the weakened German garrisons out of their fortifications and back into clear territory. Another army of rifle corps has been deployed here and will shred any German hardpoints that stick around for next turn.
The southwestern front continues the drive west, taking 30 miles of German territory and breaking through the German line in two places. The Voronezh front commits one rifle and one tank army here with a second of each waiting for next turn.
60 miles from Kiev.
The most dangerous parts of my line right now. Above is the northern flank of the Kiev bulge and below is the southern flank. There's panzers in both locations so I've deployed an army of rifle corps in the north with another army of rifle corps waiting to be deployed next turn and the 3rd shock army in the south to prevent any breakthroughs. The northern flank has to be held through strength of arms but in the south I'm planning to take the east bank of the Dneipr and fortify it. I should be able to hold the Dneipr against any German attack so it makes a perfect primary objective for this offensive.
Less Germans here this turn, they're probably railing north.
Pushing up the Dneipr, every hex is precious here.
Without their German babysitters I'm able to push the Romanians around as much as I want, progress is made.
The Germans are unable to properly fortify the hex that we've been trading back and forth and I'm able to stick 3 corps in it this turn since I didn't need them to push the Germans out. With luck this will give me enough frontage to get some very high offensive CVs and start tearing down bigger German forts down here. I don't even need to win fights, I just want to get a lot of sappers involved and ruin all these fortifications.
Very annoying but if I can hold onto this hex I think that will be the tipping point in finally breaking this line and resuming my westward momentum.
The German reinforcements finally show up, can they stop my westward drive or will they merely slow me down? Even if they do stop me cold, does it matter?
The answer is no, I'm basically at parity with the Germans all across the line except for here, where I had a massive advantage. If they bring in enough troops to stop me I'll have superiority wherever those troops came from and start driving west there instead.
The Germans don't appear to be capable of launching a summer offensive, their scattered attacks aren't accomplishing anything and I'm still running into skeletal panzer divisions with ~40-50 tanks, barely fit for combat. The plan is to keep making rifle corps to tear down fortifications and keep stretching the line wherever possible.