War in the East – The Road to Smolensk – Turn 4

The Soviets were busy entrenching again during their turn. The Soviet AI, perhaps a better general than I, did not attempt to exploit the gap between the Panzer Groups, instead choosing to firm up its lines. The lines have some depth in the center, but are weaker along the flanks, especially to the north. This is ideal for my encirclement strategy.

The Soviet Line, Turn Four

But first, a bit more consolidation. The 9th Army (dark green) moves to the north, and the 4th Army (dark blue) moves to the south and center. The infantry elements of the Panzer Groups move to take the place of the motorized elements, which will be used to attempt a small breakthrough.

In the north, the 3rd Panzer Group achieved a small breakthrough around Vitebsk, encircling 7 divisions and an airborne brigade.

The Northern Front, Turn Four

In the center, the 4th and 9th armies have advanced, starting to form a line before the push to surround the Soviets.

The Center, Turn Four

In the south, the 2nd Panzer Group has encircled five divisions near Gomen, and has advanced almost entirely across the Dnepr.

The Southern Front, Turn Four

This turn, Soviet losses have officially topped 500,000. Axis casualties remain low, at 17,742.

Losses, Turn Four

This turn also marks my first real attempt to use any of the non-obvious features of the War in the East engine. Specifically, I motorized several companies of the 9th Army, to move them into place. This required a larger number of administrative points than I expected, and some rough terrain limited the units mobility. I’m hoping to discover additional features of the engine as I play.

Next Turn: Closing in on Smolensk.

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