Turn 7 Recap:
Soviets pull back from their weak surge in the South. This however has achieved an effect of extending the Axis line from Southern Stalingrad to Aksai . Only the mobile defense of the Panzers is holding the Soviets at bay. Units try to penetrate the line again on that axis, but the hole is too small.
The Soviets also attack at the Cherkasov bridge, seeing the forces arraying Reserve units of the Axis counter with heavy artillery DG’ing some of theattackers. Undaunted the the attack carries on. With air added to magnify the effort a 5:1 results in a disappointing d1. The town and bridge hold.
The Soviets try another push above and while they kill two valuable units they make little progress.
Nizhne area is again a focus. over a hundred factors attack and achieve another d1 result…. The Axis rush to reinforce.
several weaker units combine on a 2:1 attack and 1Panzer takes its first losses. An idea is born…..more on that in a second.
The resistance in the North fades and forces are release to the western side of the Chir.
In the German turn, they crank up the heat. 14 Pzr and 29th Mtr kill 3 steps in 2 seperate attacks with even the Nazi HQ’s getting inbolved to push back bulges in the South. Reinforcements head to assist from T8 onboards. 24Pzr tries a 6:1 attack and snake eyes. taking a d1. Losses are crushing the Germans.
Thoughts at the half way mark.
Good progress to date. Teh leadership struggles to keep far flung units in supply AND fighting at maximum odds. Spreading out to tackle the line and suggest threats to the Axis is not working.
If the Soviets are to cross the rivers that bar the open ground beyond a new tactic is required.
For the next two turns the Soviets are going to take any attack at 2:1 or better! the Axis cannot plug every hole in the Dyke. They have two mobile reserves. The Soviets need to attack across a broader front and bear the cost.
So far so good. Losses are really high. Much higher than game 1. The problem is that the Axis territory that is needed to be covered is larger too. The Chir and Don river networks are the only solid line s of defense. Once those are lost its a game of pockets and supply.
If the Axis can bruise the Soviet forces enough to blunt larger attacks for one more turn then we get a decent influx of reinforcements. This will help plug the line. Given how spread thin the Soviets are the Axis may start pulling units from the line that can exploit and just firefight breaches as they occur.