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Putting Supply into the Game

Posted: Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:10 pm
by timerover51
I need to spend some time working on how to get supply into the game, as I keep coming across material like this is my reading on World War 2. The following quote comes from a report written by the Germans after the war for the US to use in evaluating the Russians. The report is titled Combat in the East, and can be found at the following website. This site is an enormous resource for any student of military history.

Search under World War 2 documents.
During the same winter [the Winter of 1941-1942], at times more than 90 .percent of all locomotives within the area of Army Group South were disabled due to damage caused by severe cold, with the. result that railroad traffic was virtually at a standstill. The stockpiling of materiel by the Eleventh Army· for the attack on Sevastopol during the summer of 1942 required almost two months because of poor railroad conditions. In the autumn of 1942 the Sixth Army was unable to provide adequate artillery support in the attack on Stalingrad because the railways functioned' at only about two-thirds of the minimum capacity demanded.
Supply problems are a pretty constant refrain in reports from the Eastern Front, while Rommel continually had supply problems (see the book The Rommel Diaries, but also read the Ciano Diaries for the period 1940 to late 1942, and the Italian Navy in World War 2), and the Japanese High Command concept of logistics was abysmal.

Re: Putting Supply into the Game

Posted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 11:11 am
by nexus73
Tooth to tail ratio shows the US is usually around 10 to 1 in favor of the tail. That's our "secret" to global power projection. Concepts like the "fleet train" and keeping General George Marshall home because his organizational ability was so good combined well with the most massive industrial capacity on the planet. We could only lose the war if we lost the will to win. On another A&A forum, someone wrote that if the original A&A IPC count was to be made realistic, one would have to give the Americans another 100 IPC's! Assuming that is close to true, a fat lot of good production does if it can't be delivered to where it needs to be.

Strategy is for amateurs. Logistics is for professionals. I always did like that saying! I also wonder if a game of military logistics for 20th century warfare has ever been developed? German railways, 1914. Red Ball Express, 1944. Massive airlift, Yom Kippur War 1973. Massive EVERYTHING, Persian Gulf War 1991. Those were the supply successes. Malta during the Mediterranean campaign of WWII showed what happens when interdiction succeeds while US Navy/Royal Navy ASW is the story of interdiction stopped dead in its tracks. "Where's the Tirpitz?" led to convoy PQ-17 being scattered and destroyed, showing the power of "fleet in being". Then we have the battle vs terrain, as seen by the building of the Burma Road and after it was lost to the Japanese advance, the campaign in northern Burma so the Ledo Road could take its place.

"Sure, I can make that airlift to Stalingrad work!". That was what Goering pretty much said. It did not end well for his side! On the Allied side, building the Alcan Highway enabled logistics to Alaska but the idea that both the Japanese and Americans had of using Alaska as a place to conduct operations against each other died on the vine due to Mother Nature. The weather was too lousy!

Enough of my rambling this morning :-)


Re: Putting Supply into the Game

Posted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 3:34 pm
by timerover51
I guess my interest in supply comes from being a U.S. Army supply officer, with time in Alaska. If you really wanted to give the US its actual IPC total, take the rest of the world, and give the US the same amount of IPC. By 1944, we were producing ONE-HALF of the military equipment being produced by the entire world. We were also feeding a fair amount of the world, and supplying Australia with farming equipment to increase production, along with supplying Britain and Russia with rail locomotives to keep their rail systems running, and then rebuilding the French rail system. Of course, if you did that, the Axis players will scream bloody murder. The starting production of the US is badly understated as well, considering that the Japanese economy in 1941 was one-tenth the size of the US in 1941. So start the US with 80 IPC and increase at say 20 every turn, with automatic production of 2 transports at every turn, over and above the IPC payment.