Thursday, November 12, 2015

Kiev to Rostov via Vassal GT42

I'm continuing to play this monster game solitaire using Vassal and it is working out really well (the mechanics of playing the game that is).

As to the game, it is a great scenario.  Fourteen turns have now been completed and Kiev has just fallen, three turns ahead of historical result.  However Dnepropetrovsk is ten turns behind schedule...

This post is about the pocket and a new tactic I tried out.  Normally if I can't form a solid front I just retreat the Soviets, dropping off roadblocks occasionally.  This worked well down by the Crimea, but also the Axis have held back from supporting that front in favour of the encirclement.  The Axis breakthrough at Kremenchug has been the big success, although the going has been slowed by the weather (in the twelve turns that had variable weather five were mud, there would have been a sixth but in the play season you can have no more than two consecutive turns of mud).  The mud played havoc with Axis rail repair and use of their Panzer Divisions, but it also interfered with the Soviet retreat.

The Soviets launched 13 attacks, more than they had done in the whole game so far.  Six resulted in the Soviets being removed to the cadre box which is a much better outcome than having them surrender.  Two attacks actually destroyed Axis units.  The others were either neutral or moderately successful.  Only one was a disaster and that was the attempted breakout from Poltava.

End of the turn.  The large pocket had pulled back and got to live for another turn at least.  The Poltava pocket experienced some surrenders and if it falls will open the way to Kharkov as well as the potential for further Axis pincer moves.

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