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 Stalingrad FAQ

 
   
 
 
Stalingrad FAQ

Introduction

May, 1995

Welcome to the Stalingrad FAQ.  This is version 1.05 of that guide.
Thanks and a tip oī the hat to all those who contributed. Iīve
tried to cite everyone who contributed, so if I forgot to mention
you, drop me a line.

       This article is provided as is without any express or implied
       warranties.  While every effort has been taken to ensure the
       accuracy of the information contained in this article, the
       author/maintainer/contributors (take your pick) assume(s) no
       responsibility for errors or omissions resulting
       from the use of the information contained herein.

        Bob

        creel@bioch.tamu.edu

        What is Stalingrad?

        Russia, November 1942. After 5 months of German advances
on Stalingrad and the oil fields of the Caucasus, the German Army
has settled in for a bitter winter on the Russian steppes, with their
Rumanian, Italian, and Croatian allies to bolster their flanks. But the
Red Amy has other plans. Comrade Stalin, having pulled reserves
from every front and military district, is about to hand the Furher
his first major defeat.

        Stalingrad, like the other Atomic Games product Operation
Crusader, allows you to either play against the AI or a live
opponent (locally or via PBEM). You can command the Red Army
of Workers and Peasants to pound the Fascist invaders with massed
artillery, or take command of fast panzer divisions to save your
outnumbered forces from frozen defeat

Table of contents

1.  What is the relationship between the V for Victory (v4v) and
       the World at War (w@w) series?
2..   Hey, if the v4v series isnīt being sold, how come I see it on CD-ROM?
3.   How can I contact Atomic Games?
4. How do I subscribe/unsubscribe to Atomicīs listserver?
5.   What is Atomic coming out with next?
6.   Game Specific Bugs/Patches
7.   What happened to the bibliography for Stalingrad?
8.   What happened to minefields?
9.  How can I attach one HQ to another HQ?
10.. Whatīs that young woman on the calender saying when I
       click on her picture?
11.. PBEM How to
12.. Strategy/tactics

1. What is the relationship between the V for Victory (v4v) and
the World at War (w@w) series?
        V4V was a series of four operational-level WWII land
wargames created by Atomic Games and published by 360
Pacific, Inc..  The WaW series, (also created by Atomic, but
published by Avalon Hill) is built on V4V, but represents a
complete rewrite of its predecessor.  The changes emphasize
more and better gameplay (read: Fun!), easier access to game
functions, greater accuracy and higher-quality graphics.  The
first release in the WaW series was Operation Crusader (set in
North Africa; PC Gamerīs Editorīs Choice Award) followed by
Stalingrad, a massive treatment of this critical eastern-front
battle. In addition to new WaW titles, such as the upcoming
Kharkov, Atomic/AH will be revising the V4V titles and
upgrading them to the WaW standard.   toc">Back to TOC

2. Hey, if the v4v series isnīt being sold, how come I see it on CD-ROM?
      From March 1995 Atomic News

Some of you may have read the series of articles in PC Gamer
concerning a contract on which someone forged my signature
(ie K. Z.). This contract  allowed a company to manufacture CD-
ROM versions of our V for  Victory  games - which they did.
Even though we immediately  notified  them of the forgery and
they represented to PC Gamer  and us that they understood
they did not have the right to  make or  sell these CDs, they
ultimately decided to sell them. We are now  trying to track
down these bootleg CDs. If you see  any of them,  please let us
know where, when, about how many,  and how much  they
were selling for. I appreciate any help you  can give us. The
address to send info to is  īsightings@atomic.comī. Be sure to
include  enough info so we can call the store if necessary.
Thanks.   toc">Back to TOC

3. How can I contact Atomic Games?
Atomic monitors comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.strategic, comp.sys.mac.games.strategic
and
maintains a www web site at http://www.atomic.com.  Game patches
are available at their ftp site atomic.com in the appropriate
directory. Atomic may be contacted at Compuserve
72662,1333, internet feedback@atomic.com (see also
listserver). People who have America On Line accounts should
contact FishBo at LeadEaters@AOL.com. This is a new wargame
club that will be supporting Atomicīs products.   toc">Back to TOC

4. How do I subscribe/unsubscribe to Atomicīs listserver (Including HYPERMAIL)?

Hypermail

    Perhaps the best thing invented since underwear (IMHO). For you people with
a web browser, check out Atomicīs hypermail web site. No more slogging through
numerous mail messages, no more howls from your local net support on incoming
mail. Mail may be sorted as to date (my favorite option), subject, thread or
author. For Operation Crusader point your web browser to

http://panzer.atomic.com/maillist/crusader/index.html#start

and for Stalingrad

http://panzer.atomic.com/maillist/stalingrad/index.html#start>

Listserver

(This section was lifted directly from crusader- request@atomic.com)
      This is the gateway to the Atomic Games discussion groups.  In the
language of the Internet, these
groups are called "mailing lists" because your email address is
added to an electronic mailing list.  Whenever anyone on a
mailing list sends a message to us, we automatically echo that
message to everyone else on that mailing list.
Atomic Games currently has two public mailing lists: one for
World at War: Operation Crusader and one for World at War:
Stalingrad.  Topics usually range from strategy and tactics to
reading lists to finding play-by-email opponents.  The lists are
constantly monitored by Atomic Games.  This gives you direct
access to the game designers and developers and it assures that
no one talks about the OJ Simpson trial or fuzzy bunnies.

 Also, membership to these lists is free of charge.  Your Internet
provider may have a charge but thatīs not set by us, nor do we
get any money at all for these lists.  Currently, we only know of
charges levied by CompuServe.

Warnings

1) Sometimes each list can generate 50+ messages a day.  The
newer and more popular the game, the more messages youīll
get.  If they get to be too much for you, you may want to try
the digest version of the list.  This will come to you three to
five times a week (depending on the lists traffic) and will
contain all the messages that were sent to the list since the last
digest version was mailed.

2) Remember that when you send a message to a mailing list,
EVERYONE on the list reads it.  But donīt let this inhibit you.
The people on these lists are extremely polite, helpful, and
knowledgeable.  So, enjoy yourself, but know that everyone is
listening.

        To make the listserver more efficient, please use the
following subject prefixes:

             BUG:     Bug reports
             OPP:     Opponent wanted
             SUGG:   Suggestions
             TAC:     Tactics and Strategy
             HIST:    Historical background/discussion relevant to the game
             CHAT:   Legit Chat subjects include notifiying the list  of
interesting
             topics elsewhere on the net, TV  shows, books, movies, etc.
             PLEASE keep  Chat messages brief and to a minimum.
             SYS:      Annoucements and responses from Atomic -  (not for your
use)

How to Join  To join a list, you must "subscribe" to it by sending email to a
special address.  If you want to join the Crusader mailing list,
youīd send mail to:

                                crusader-request@atomic.com<

Or for the digest version:

                             crusader-d-request@atomic.com

Similarly, to join the Stalingrad list, youīd send mail to:

                               stalingrad-request@atomic.com

Or for the digest version:

                           stalingrad-d-request@atomic.com

Once you have addressed your note, put the word SUBSCRIBE
as the subject. (To unsubscribe, put the word UNSUBSCRIBE as
the subject.)

Then send the message.  Usually within minutes, you will
recieve confirmation that you have been added to the list.
Depending on the time of day, you  may also start receiving
mail from the list almost immediately. Donīt worry unless you
donīt see mail for 24 hours.  The Internet can be a very twisted
place - literally.  Also, digest versions may not come for several
days.

In the event your mailing address changes, it would be the
wise to first send an UNSUBSCRIBE message to the
-request@atomic.com or -d-request@atomic.com address from
your old address and then resubscribe from your new address.
Otherwise, all the mail will still be going to your old address.

                       The archive server

Every submission sent to this list is archived.  The size of the
archive depends on the limits set by the list maintainer (it is
very well possible that only, say, the last two mails sent to the
list are still archived, the rest might have expired).

You can look at the header of every mail coming from this list
to see under what name it has been archived.  The X-Mailing-
List: field contains the mailaddress of the list and the file in
which this submission was archived.

If you want to access this archive, you have to send mails to
the -request

                        Subject: archive help

This archive server knows the following commands:

       get filename ...
       ls directory ...
       egrep case_insensitive_regular_expression filename ...
       maxfiles nnn
       version

Aliases for īgetī: send, sendme, getme, gimme, retrieve, mail
Aliases for īlsī: dir, directory, list, show
Aliases for īegrepī: search, grep, fgrep, find

Lines starting with a ī#ī are ignored.
Multiple commands per mail are allowed.
Setting maxfiles to zero will remove the limit (to protect you
against yourself no more than maxfiles files will be returned
per request). Egrep supports most common flags.

Examples:
      ls latest
      get latest/12
      egrep some.word latest/*  toc">Back to TOC

5. What is Atomic coming out with next?

(From Atomic news, May 1995)

Beyond Squad Leader

Just back from E3, and BSL is looking more and more like a winner!  The
program was well received by show goers and was labeled by one magazine as
the "best looking game at the show"!  We have now included the tanks, which
can independently target multiple enemy teams at once - one for each weapon
on the tank.  Hereīs a hint: If the other guy has armor and you donīt -
RUN!  Its pretty devastating to loose your armor support and have his tanks
moving unrestricted.  Of course, if its the other way around....

Also, the Win95 version is now functional.  We have been working to make
the code easily portable between the Mac and the PC and that has paid off.
Weīre still a few weeks away from PC Alpha testing.

World At War: America Invades

America Invades has begun Alpha testing on both the Mac and PC.  We have
all 7 of the scenarios in and functioning, including a special "Operation:
Cobra" scenario which details the initial phases of Allied breakout from
Normandy.  In case you havenīt heard of this, the latest in the World at
War series, America Invades covers the D-Day landings at Utah and Omaha
Beach, and features several well-known combat units, including the American
82nd and 101st Airborne divisions, the American 1st Infantry Division (aka
"The Big Red One"), and the German Panzer Lehr Armored Division and the 2nd
SS Panzergrenadier Division.  America Invades boasts new graphics, expanded
hardware support, and upgraded combat, AI, and logistics routines.  If
youīve never tried World at War, this is the one to get!

6. Game Specific Bugs

The  Stalingrad patches are in final testing for both Mac and PC.  By far
the biggest thing these patches address is a problem with play by email between
Macs and PCs.  These should be available around the second week
in June (from Atomic News, May).

       Q. Iīm getting the "Continue or Exit" box every turn when
Iīm the originator of the game, even though the game created
the proper backup directory, and the backup files and key files
were correctly stored each turn.

        This is a known bug, and a patch is under development.
To ensure that players moved the backup directory along with
their game files if they moved the PBEM game, there is a
warning dialog.  However, there is a bug which causes the test
to show false "positives," which causes the dialog to display
when not required. The workaround is to select "Continue" in
the warning dialog if you are sure the backup directory is in
the proper place.

        Q. I started a game, mailed to my opponent, and instead of
seeing his move, he saw MY move.

        Currently, the game allows you to save the game (this is
availablefrom the menu, and from the "Save on Exit" box) after
selecting "Execute" from the Phase Menu.  This can cause an
opponent to resume the first turn showing _your_ side, instead
of _his_. The workaround is not to save the game in the above
situation. After the first move, you may save the game.

7. What happened to the bibliography for Stalingrad?

Stalingrad Reading List (Courtesy of Eric Young)

Stalingradskaya Epopeya, Moscow 1968.
Vasilevskii, A.M - Delo Vsei Zhizni, Minsk 1984.
Lelyoushenko, D.D. - Moskva-Stalingrad-Berlin Praga, Moscow
1973.
Kozmichev, A.P.- Sovetskaya Gvardiya, Moscow 1969.
Morozov, V.P.- Istoricheskii Podvig Stalingrada, Moscow 1982.
von Mellenthin, F.W.- German Generals of World War II, Norman
OK. 1977.
Gudgin, P.- The Tiger Tanks, London 1994.
Time Life Books- The Road to Stalingrad, Alexandria VA. 1991.
U.S. War Department- Handbook on German Military Forces, Baton
Rouge LA. 1990.
Chamberlin, Doyle, Jentz- Encyclopedia of German Tanks of World
War II, London 1993.
von Manstien- Lost Victories, Novato CA. 1982.
Ziemke E.F.- Stalingrad to Berlin: The German Defeat in the East,
Washington D.C. 1968.
Rotundo L.- Battle for Stalingrad, Mclean VA. 1989.
USAF Academy- Transformation in Russian and Soviet Military
History, Washington D.C. 1986.
Rauss E., von Natzmer O.- The Anvil of War, Mechanicsburg PA.
1994.
Mueller-Hillebrand B.- Das Heer 1933-1945, Frankfurt 1956.
Grams R.- Die 14. Panzer-Division Frankrurt, _____________ .
Newland A.- Cossacks in the German Army 1941-1945, Portland
OR. 1991.

Additional Reading
 (C. Fago)
Tarrant, V.E. - Stalingrad, London, 1992
G. Zhukov - Marshal of the Soviet Union, Reminiscences and
    Reflections by G. Zhukov, English Translation 1985.  toc">Back to TOC

8. What happened to minefields?

The effect of minefields is factored into the overall effect of
fortifications  .

9. How can I attach one HQ to another HQ?
 Open the "HQ side window"
 Click on the hex containing the regimental HQ
 Repeatedly click on the arrow left to the HQ icon  in the "HQ side window"
until the corps HQ icon  is displayed
 The "attach" button will be activated and you just  press that.

10.  Whatīs that young woman on the calender saying when I click on her picture?

Sheīs says "Donīt, Please".

Apparently, there are several different sources of information on this
particular femme fatale.

This particular femme fatale graced the nose of a captured B-17
called the "Shady Lady".  It was used by the Luftwaffe to train its pilots
for attacking the Fortresses (K. Zabalaou)

The picture is from an airbrush portrait by Alberto Vargas (1896 - 1982),
"Something for the Boys," that appeared in the June, 1943 issue of ESQUIRE
magazine.  Mr. Vargas work spanned the 1920īs through the 1950īs:  he was,
as THE NEW YORKERīs "Talk of the Town" column (January 11, 1941) said, "an
artist who could make a girl look nude if she were rolled up in a rug."(P.
Popejoy)

According "Strangers in a strange land"
by Hans-Heir Stapfer (Squadron signals publications, Inc.
Number 6047) Her name was Shady Lady, a noseart of a B-17G
(42-97385) of the 398th Bomb Group based at Nuthampstead,
England. Crash landed at Rechicourt Le Chateau, France on 8th
September 1944. American fighters destroyed the bomber
before it could be recovered by the Germans (J. Seppane).

11. PBEM How to

                        The Not Nearly Canonical Treatise
                             on How to Send Binary Files
                                  Through the Internet

by Carl D. Fago  (cdf1@psu.edu)  (Comments and corrections welcome)
Mac details provided by P. Gabrillo (GABRILLOP@STU.ADMIN.USFCA.EDU

During the playtesting of Atomicīs Stalingrad wargame I found that
many people on the Internet didnīt know how to send binary files to
someone else on the internet. This is necessary if you have
internet access and want to play the game using the excellent PBEM
facility included in the game.  In addition, the ability to play
computer wargames via PBEM is expanding as the capabilities of the
programmed artificial intelligence for these games continues to be
on the order of a bright lemming.  (Apologies to the lemmings.)

First, a little history.  The internet was developed as a non-
centralized communications and command and control system that
would survive a nuclear attack.  Thus, there is no one place that
is the internet.  It is a collection of linked mainframe,
workstations and personal computers at government institutions,
universities, businesses, and personal homes.

As one can see, this system would be inherently chaotic and it is.
There are innumerable configurations of different hardware
platforms and capabilities.

Now for people to be able to communicate with one another some
unified system needed to be developed to exchange written
information and ideas. Computers use 8 bit bytes as their main of
information.  Each byte has 256 possible bit combinations.  To
represent our alphabet, not all 256 possible combinations were
needed.  Plus, communications back then were not nearly as reliable
so the system designers reserved one bit to use for error checking
leaving 128 bit combinations (7 bits out of 8) to represent text.
Thus, the most basic email system only looks at or transmits the
first 7 bits in any byte that gets transmitted to it.  The 8th bit
it would use for its own purposes of error checking.

Now, a binary file as would be generated by a computer game
system to be able to exchange information during PBEM play relies
on all 8 bits of each byte.  If you were to send the binary file to your
opponent using email, each 8th bit would be corrupted as it would
be used by the email systems. Thus, your opponent would receive
the file but it would be so much garbage and you both would be
frustrated that he couldnīt use the file.  But people still wanted  to
send binary files via email as that is often the only way some  people
have to exchange files.  So some bright person came up with  the idea
of encoding the binary file so that it could be  represented by a file
of text that an email system would transmit  without corrupting.  In
short, this system takes each 7 bits of the  binary file and writes the
corresponding alphabetic representation  to  another file. This second
file would appear as text and since  it is pure text, it can be sent via
an email system without being  inherently corrupted on the other
end.  Also, as you can tell, the  second file would be generally 8/7 the
size of the original file.

Now, as the recipient of such a text file, one would only need to
reverse the algorithm to reconstruct the original binary file.

There are actually a couple of different algorithms that can do
this process.  Sample algorithms are uuencoding (on PC, Mac and
Unix) and BinHex (Mac and PC at least).  Some differences in
encoding schemes would be which alphabetic characters it would use.
Some computers 20 years ago wouldnīt send lower case characters so
some encoding schemes would use less than the 128 7 bit
combinations.  It really doesnīt matter what encoding scheme is
used so long as you and your opponent use the same encoding
schemes.

So, now, to send a binary file to your opponent, you would have a
program that encodes the binary file.  You would run the program on
your binary file.  The output would be a text file that you would
send to your opponent via your favorite email program.  One way to
do this is to import the text file into the text editor that your
email program uses to let you write your messages.

Having received your mail, your opponent would save the message in
a file, decode the file with the decoding program and then use the
resulting binary file.  Real simple!

On unix systems there are often utilities included that are named
uuencode and uudecode.

For PC compatibles, there are a number of possible utilities.  My
favorite is uuencode.exe and uudecode.exe developed by Richard
Marks.  It is available from many different ftp sites such as
oak.oakland.edu or ftp.wustl.edu. Look for a file named
UUEXE???.ZIP where ??? would be the version number.

For macintosh systems there are similar utilities that are
available. UULite, UUundo and UUTool are some example encoding
programs for the Mac. UULite is the most common because it is
robust and bigger than the others in terms of handling files.  FTP
sites where these utilities can be found include sumex-
aim.stanford.edu, nic.funet.fi, src.doc.ic.ac.uk or ftp.wustl.edu.

Ok, there is one other useful utility that can be used in this
process...a compression utility.  It is always easier, and
sometimes cheaper, to send  a smaller file than a larger one. The
PBEM files generated by the game can generally be made smaller.
The compression programs examine the binary file for repeating
sequences of bits.  They then replace the long repeating sequences
with a smaller tag keeping track of what long sequences are
represented by the smaller tags. When a compressed file is
uncompressed, the smaller tags are then substituted by the longer
sequences to reconstruct the file.  The more repeating sequences,
the more the original binary file can be compressed.

There are utilities available that implement the compression
algorithms making the PBEM files significantly smaller.  Popular
algorithms are pkzip, zoo, sit and compress.

A popular unix compression scheme is īcompressī.  Files compressed
with īcompressī have a .Z file extension. To reverse the process,
the unix utility īuncompressī would be used.  Utilities are
available for the Mac and PC than can compress and uncompress
these .Z files.  PKZIP and ZOO are popular on the PC while SIT is
popular on the Mac.  SIT is actually not a very good if you send one
between mac and pc.  Try ZipIt, Zippop, Macgzip, Macunzip, and
Maczip.  they are all compatible with pkzip/unzip files on Dos.
Again, there are utilities available for each platform to deal with
the compression schemes used on the other platforms.  To get one of
these programs, check the ftp sites I listed previously.

An additional advantage of the compression routines is that many of
them include error checking so that if the compressed file gets
corrupted along the way, the routine will tell you that something
went wrong.  Your opponent can then ask you to resend your file
without possibly screwing up the PBEM game by running
a corrupt PBEM game file.

Note that I have not mentioned exactly how to use the particular
encode/decode/compression routines.  There are too many out there
to go over each individually.  As you obtain the routines, they
will each have their own instructions and possibly more detailed
explanations of how they work.

Also note that cross-platform games are now possible because there
are common compression and encoding/decoding routines.  These
routines also allow cross-system (CI$ to GEnie to Internet) play
since they rely only on email capability.  The Mac user on CI$ can
play a game with a PC clone user on GEnie.

To conclude how to exchange PBEM game files via email, here is a
short synopsis

1)  Generate your binary PBEM game file that you want to send.
2)  Reduce the size of the file using your favorite compression
    routine.
3)  Convert the compressed binary file to a text file using
    uuencode.
4)  Email the resulting text file to your opponent.
5)  Your opponent saves the email in a file.
6)  Your opponent decodes the text file with uudecode into your
    compressed binary file.
7)  Your opponent decompresses the binary file with the compliment
    of your favorite compression routine.
8)  Your opponent now has your original PBEM game file.
And thatīs it.  I hope that this has helped and I invite corrections from
those who know more than I do. toc">Back to TOC

12. Strategy/tactics

Scenario specific Vs a Human

Rattenkrieg (Soviet viewpoint)
(Ben Zarwell)

        a. Itīs a nightmare playing the Russians, especially for the first
36 hours of combat. Get used to seeing your boys being overrun and/or
vaporized by German air power, but donīt lose heart.

        b. RETREAT!!!! Get into the city and spare yourself all those
overruns. Fall back from Orlovka (donīt use the roads or a cagey German
player will stop you cold with artillery interdiction) and pull
out of the bulge formed by the 244th and 399th between Dubovaya and
Tsaritsa gullys. Remember to keep the flanks defended in depth as the nose
collapses back in or youīll really get crushed. A leapfrog defense is most
effective in the Kubyshev area where your unit density isnīt very great.
Try to avoid letting the Germans destroy the 35th Guards. Itīs difficult
but it pays off big later on. Remember, you canīt stop the Germans at this
stage, you can only hope to slow him down.

        c. HOLD THOSE FERRY CROSSINGS-- ALL OF THEM!! Why? Because it puts
the German in a position where he has to interdict everywhere and thins
out his artillery coverage. The only crossing that the russian should even
consider not fighting to the last man and the last round for is the
Southern landing, because everybody has to use the same crossing from
Krasnaya Sloboda to Golodny Island anyway. I gave up Southern Stalingrad
without firing a shot, and although it helped me shore up my lines in the
center, perhaps a regiment of the 13th Guards in the Southern RR Station
would have provided the Germans with 36 hours of entertainment...

        d. FORTIFY. Thatīs what all those seemingly useless Soviet HQīs are
for. I had a complete line from Skudry crossing to the Kurgan by the time
the Germans entered the city.

        e. RESERVES. Donīt get caught with your pants down. You should
always have at least 3 battallions in reserve to throw in front of any
German breakthrough. Remember that Russki Zocīs arenīt reduced at night.

        f. COUNTERATTACKS. Only when you need to, and then generally a
probe will do the trick. For example, I had to pull back out of a salient
where I was surrounded on four sides. Probes at the flanks and artillery at
the apex of the bulge reduced the German Zocs enough to make it possible
for me to slip out of the stranglehold. I was also fortunate enough to
actually surround two overzealous German Battallions and beat them up
pretty badly. However, attacks are the EXCEPTION rather than the rule--
they just drain you of your supplies and are especially hard on the
artillery.

        g. COUNTERBATTERY. This is one response to pesky night ferry
interdiction. However, if the German artillery is far enough from your
front line in the city it wonīt suffer any casulties. If you ever actually
get a visual fix on the german Nebelwerfer batteries, let them have it with
airpower. Those things are dangerous and irritating as hell.

 Scenario Specific Vs. the AI

 by Carl Fago

          Note: Your opponent may be reading, so be careful

Some general comments first.

The AI is weak on the attack and more to the point, all these
scenarios are simple matters to win as the defender against the
AI.  Just keep putting units between the enemy and the victory
point hexes.  Fall back enough to reduce your losses and always
have a second line of defense.  Given this rather simple tactic
when playing the defender against the AI I wonīt go into great
deal as to the individual scenario tactics to employ against the
AI.

1.  To The Volga

This is a tough little scenario as the Germans.  The main point of
the attack should be toward Crossing 62.  Cut that off and the
rest of the Soviet forces will fall like flies.  The Germans will be
hardpressed toactually get it but it should be the main focus of
the attack.

The secondary focus should be between the Brick Works and
the Red Barricades Factory or the Red Barricades Factory itself.
Having captured this area, the Brick Works will fall shortly.

Donīt spend a lot of time worrying about the south part of the
battle. The Soviet forces are too strong to be able to make any
real headway.

2.  A River Too Far

A very nice scenario to play in an evening.  Again, the Germans
are on the attack since the Russians own most of the VC hexes
to begin with.

First off, ignore the VC hexes to the east, Antonov and Zhutova
Station. Concentrate on getting to the northern VC hexes.  These
are the ones which will bring you victory.

The Russians may try to head down the east side of the map to
reinforce the south east sector.  Let them go.  Then head north
and northeast punching up to take Gromoslavka and then
Nizhne-Kumski and finally Chernomorov.

The Rumanians that come in as reinforcements should be used
to guard the northern boundary of the Russian south-east sector
forces.  Donīt use valuable German attack units for this purpose.
You can leave some artillery down to agitate the south-east
sector but leave only enough to keep the Russians bottled up.

3. Mansteinīs Solution

This one has the German as the defender (I call them the
defender because theyīll get the majority of the VC hexes and
the Russians have to take them from the Germans.)

As the Russians, you have to take the obvious VC hexes, Lozhki
Station, Osinovka and Malaya Donshchinka.  Send the 4th Tank
southwest toward Morozovsk and/or Oblivskaya.  Against the
AI, you might be able to take
one of these towns and kill an HQ along the way.

Send the northern cavalry forces to the east to take Osinovka
and hold it.  Send the rest of the northern forces south toward
Kalach.  Look for ways to encircle the Germans and bottle up the
tremendous number of
reinforcements that they will get.

The southern forces should have one of the mechanized
divisions racing west toward Nizhne Chirskaya.  Set the AA unit
and the AT unit and the mechanized divisionīs HQ into Lozhki
Station to hold it.  The rest of the forces should push north
toward Kalach and try to cut off what German forces it can.
Youīll have plenty to handle in a couple of days
when the German reinforcements come on.

To win as the Russians against the AI in this one, you need to
take several of the German VC hexes for at least a few turns.
You may lose them to the German reinforcements but the points
gained by a few turnsī possession should win you the game if
you work at killing German units.

As the Germans in this one, you should have a very easy time
against the AI.  First, be sure to have someone occupying your
initial VC hexes at all times.  Second, there should be no reason
why the Russians should come within even two hexes of Kalach.
Send your forces far and wide to intercept and encircle the
Russian forces.  The exception to this is the south-eastern forces.

The south-eastern forces consist of two groups, one north and
one south. The north group should run to Kalach and beyond.
Send the armored units and motorized infantry units beyond
Kalach to intercept the oncoming Russian forces.  Use strategic
movement at all times.  Donīt be afraid of a few ambushes.
Your forces are strong enough to handle it and the further from
Kalach that you intercept the Russian forces the better.

The south group should send some forces south and the
majority west, south of Kalach.  Try sending a quick one down
to Lozhki Station via the railway.  You might get lucky and get
the VC hex ahead of the Russians.

I like putting the medium range (4) artillery units in the towns
south east of Kalach and putting the long range (6) artillery just
south of Kalach.  I then like to put the two HQs in the south
force in the same hexes, one per artillery unit.  They can then
dig in to provide protection to the artillery units and a fallback
position to guard the approach to Kalach from the east.  Donīt
worry too much about losing forces down there.  Just keep the
Russians at bay.  In a couple of days youīll get all the
reinforcements you need and the Russians will be stopped dead.

4.  Rattenkreig

As the Germans the key is to attack to pinch off the two bulges
in the lines and then attack toward the Volga to cut the Russian
forces in several pieces.  In the north, send someone south very
quickly to the Skudry Crossing and then just sit on the crossing.
The rest of the north forces should cut off the forces around
Orlovka.  You should be able to get a big chunk of the Russian
forces in this area.

In the west, cut into the bases of the bulge between Tsaritsa
Gorge and Dubovaya Gully.  In addition, some forces north of
this bulge ought to be able to strike out in the direction of
Mamayev Kurgan.

The southern forces should just roll up the Russian forces in the
south along with cutting them off around the Univermag and
north of the Central RR Station.  The goal should be to get at the
landing sites. These sites are the key to the Russian supply.  Cut
them off and the Russian canīt stand too long.

The German forces ought to be able to completely clean up the
entire west side of the Volga by about Turn 70 or so.

5.  Wintergewitter

I havenīt played this one much so someone else will have to fill
in.

6.  Quiet Flows the Don

Now we have the Russians on the offense.  The point to
remember about Quiet is to use the Schwerepunkt theory
espoused by the Germans.  Pick a point of attack and focus your
all of your attack on this point. Achieve local breakthroughs.

Quiet allows this quite well.  First, there should be three
breakthrough areas.  The first is just to the east of the north-
south road west of Serafimovich.  Attack against the couple of
Rumanian units in this area and achieve the breakthrough.
Once the breakthrough is achieved the forces in this area should
do several things.  First is to head toward Bokovskaya, the
second is to turn the Rumanian west flank to join up with forces
coming from the east and the third is to head south toward
Morozovsk.

The second area is the area between Kletskaya and
Serafimovich.  This breakthrough area should look at striking
west to link up with other Russian forces coming from the west
to create a Rumanian pocket.  And the bulk of the forces should
head south to Vlasov.

The third area is tougher but none-the-less do-able.  This area
is against the west flank of the Germans just east of Kletskaya.
Use the AT units to head south toward Kalach, which they wonīt
get to before the German reinforcements arrive, and Surovikino
and Nizhne Chirskaya.  The latter two will be unguarded by the
AI so just run down there with these AT units regardless of
supply.  Then, just sit in those hexes.  The rest of these units
should try to turn the German flank and also help out the forces
heading to Vlasov.

Once Vlasov is taken, head for Kalach.  It can be taken by the end of the
game though it is tough.  At least, you should be able to encircle Kalach by
the end of the game.
 

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