Part 67: Turn 64: September 3, 1942
A new guards army, this one on the Bryansk front, and a new guards cavalry. There are now only 3 cavalry corps out of the 25 in my OoB that are not guards.
The new formations for the month, I now have the ability to create mechanized corps and brigades. The brigades are built like any other brigade, 5 AP per counter and the corps are created by fusing 3 motorized or mechanized brigades together for 20 AP. These are incredibly powerful counters and ideally I will start phasing out the infantry in my tank armies in favor of mechanized corps that are able to keep pace with the tanks.
In reality though I simply don't have the trucks to support more mobile formations operating out as far as my tank corps do so I will not be making any of these for some time, maybe around 6 of them this winter at the earliest.
And finally, the most important formation in the game, the player-controlled rail repair corps. I only get one for now and I won't get a second until March '43. In the meantime this guy going to rail south and try to bring the forces stretching for Romania back into supply before the mud hits. Once I've got a rail down there that I like I'm going to run a rail through Kiev across the Dneipr but that's a lower priority for now.
I'm so excited to be doing things up here finally, now I just need to take a little more land and bring Leningrad back into the rail network.
The invasion of Finland has begun. The primary goals of this offensive are marked in red with the border town of Lappeenranta being the ultimate objective, if I can take the town I can force the Finns to surrender. I've earmarked 3 armies for this, the 7th independent, the 3rd shock and the 64th infantry. I'm hoping to shatter the weak Finnish garrison north of Leningrad and push on to the objective before the mud sets in during mid-October. If the mud sets in and the Finns pull all their forces out of Karelia I may not be able to dislodge them. In any case the Finnish manpower pool is very low and mine is very high so I can easily ramp casualties up to the point where it's unsustainable for them.
The only other thing to happen on this front is I take 2 hexes on the Volkhov front. Some of the German counters up here are just too strong to move, maybe they'll soften up a little in the winter.
That new infantry army is ready to go and I'm going to slot it in between the Kalinin and Western fronts. The plan is that next time I get a new front it will take over the STAVKA armies there and then take 2 more armies off the Kalinin front, allowing me to finally bring Kalinin down under/near it's CP limit without having to reshuffle armies through multiple fronts. Here's hoping the next new front will have an appropriate name for being dead center in the line! It won't.
Trading hexes forever, the casualties caused by this useless exchange can only help me. I can afford to throw away thousands of men and get nothing for it, the Germans cannot.
The new army joins the front, it will be a few weeks before I'm able to integrate them fully into the line, everything is already so dense here. To expedite the process I make 2 new rifle corps here but you can't see them because they immediately get swallowed up in the sea of triple stacks.
Solidifying my position in Bryansk. I encircle 2 German regiments but if you asked me why I bothered I think my only response would be 'because I can.' There's only 4,000 men in this pocket so eh. If I was playing against a human player I would do this simply to annoy them since one of the regiments is part of a division that's been broken down.
The German line north of Kiev is starting to fail, a little more pressure and I can cause it to shatter completely.
The push northwest continues, the further north the Bryansk front gets the more precarious the German fortifications along the western front become.
The southwestern front moves nearly its entire strength across the river, nearly pushing the German defenders back across the Dnepr.
The Voronezh front continues to spread out from Kiev. The distance from supply is really starting to slow me down but I'm still going to keep grabbing free land if the Germans are offering it, being low on supply isn't all that scary if there's nothing to counterattack you. The tanks are out beyond the line like that for a few reasons. One there were a bunch of airbases there that I wanted to scatter, two I wanted Zhitomir so I didn't have to try to evict that security division from a heavy urban hex and three if I retain control of any of these hexes I'll be able to advance a lot further next turn. A free river crossing is always welcome.
Pockets to reduce, nations to conquer.
The first pocket surrenders, netting me 2 German infantry and a panzer division. The second pocket refuses to surrender but loses all of its fortifications, they'll give up next turn.
The Crimean front leaps forward, swallowing up another batch of German counters including a strong-looking motorized division.
The swing southwest continues with the southeastern front nearly reaching Romania. This front will be protecting the flank of the Transcaucasus front as it begins to push beyond what my supply network can handle.
And the Transcaucasus front itself. There are now Soviet formations inside Romania proper but the supply situation down here is dreadful so advancing against opposition of any kind will be very difficult. To that end I simply go around most of the axis formations down here, leaving them for next week after they've spent awhile starving.
That said, some of these Romanian counters aren't any trouble even when I'm this far out from my rail lines.
The pockets hold, nothing much else happens.
The Romanians haven't surrendered yet. At this rate there's not going to be any Romanian counters left to switch sides.