Fierce Fighting As Allies Stall!
The Allied war machine, all hot air and shiny toys, has ground to a halt as our fearsome Grenadiers face them down at ever turn in the Bocage of the French countryside! While every battle is as hard-fought as we expected, the steel will of the German armed forces and conspicuous valour of every grenadier in France has held firm and the Allies have found their campaign in France to be no mean feat.
An Example to the Men
Our ranks swell with heroes as every day our boys achieve their battlefield objectives and grind down the enemy will to continue. One such hero who has acquitted himself not only with honour and distinction, but with inspirational success, is Generalleutenant Nagten (at the time of writing, Oberst Nagten).
Generalleutenant Nagten is renown for his undefeated battle record in France, having bested the enemy in many separate clashes, and fought them to a standstill in others. When not facing the enemy in a head-to-head clash on the field of battle, Generalleutenant Nagten devotes his time to running wargames and training missions with fellow German Divisions to keep them honed and ready for combat.
To give you, the warriors of the Reich, a better understanding of the Generalleutenant, and to inspire you to live up to his heroic example, we sent long-time front line Signal reporter Hauptmann Aleksandyr (15. Pz. Div Wehrmacht) to catch up with the Generalleutenant at his command outside Villers-Bocage to ask a few questions…
Hauptmann Aleksandyr for Signal Magazine
b. 1895, Swabisch Halle
1914, enlisted, promoted Gefreiter, wound stripe, IC 2nd Class
1915, recuperation, Truppenschule, appointed infantry officer, Eastern Front
1916, Hauptman, Eastern Front, wounded, IC 1st Class, recuperation, abbreviated KREIGSCHULE
1917, General Stabt, Italian Front, Maior
1918, General Stabt, Western Front
1919, demobilized, Family business
recalled to active duty, 1937, in last grade served. Completed Kreigschule. Stabt of 3rd Infantry Division
1939, promoted Oberstleutenat, staff of 16th Division
1939-40, commanded battalion of 16th Division
1941, Stabt of 16th Panzer Division
1942, Stabt of 16th Motosiert Division. Wounded and evacuated.
1943, promoted Oberst, staff of Panzergruppe West
1944, attached as liasion to 116th Panzer
Signal: Without question, the panzers provided to us by the German people are the best in the world, but given equal terms, would you prefer to command a kampfgruppe of Panzerkampfwagen IV, Panzerkampfwagen V Panther, or Panzerkampfwagen VI Tiger?
Nagten: You must first understand that it is not the equipment that makes the soldier, but the soldier that makes the equipment. It is the German soldier (veteran or recruit, machts nichts) that makes our equipment the best in the world. Just yesterday soldiers of Panzer Abteilung 100 (Ausbildings) defeated the Americans with four year old obsolete equipment. That being said, I prefer the Panzer Mark IV and StuG III over the Panther and Tiger. The logistics of battle under our current strategic circumstances make it difficult to bring numbers of the Panther and Tiger to battle. The fuel necessary to move a platoon of Tigers can move a company of Mark IV tanks. As the Amis and Tommies have yet to field a tank that absolutely requires the additional fire power of these wonderful vehicles, the Mark IV is absolutely recommended for offensive operations and the StuG III is perfect for supporting Grenadiers.
Nagten: The number one lesson of the Ostfront is to strike the enemy without giving him an opportunity to strike back. We can ill-afford to trade the Allies tank for tank, so the opening shots of an engagement must afford an equal opportunity to withdraw to cover before the enemy can react. Plan to escape his return fire and strike again. A well-executed large ambush followed by Shoot and Scoot and then a repeat at the next opportunity can deliver three unanswered shots.
Signal: Some veterans of the Ostfront have stated that the Soviet tank is superior to ours. However, given your experience in fighting both the Soviet T-34 and the American M4, which tank is the biggest threat to our own?
Nagten: The T-34 is not superior to the MK IV when both are placed in the hands of well-trained men. The most formidable arm of the Russian Army, in my opinion, is their artillery. A new development of the T-34 with an 85mm gun is impressive, but is not overwhelmingly so. Their heavy tanks so far have proved undergunned, although rumors of a combination of their 85mm cannon with the KV chassis and even a 100mm gun persist, they seem to be concentrated, like our Tigers, in small units at front and Army level. It is the nature of technology compelled by national survival in war that evolutionary weapon systems will continue to replace the older systems.
Signal: Can you share with us any plans for an offensive within France?
Nagten: The doctrine of the Wehrmacht calls for spoiling attacks on the defensive at any opportunity. When Panzergruppe West finishes its redeployment, I imagine that a full blown counteroffensive will be planned. At the moment speculating about that possibility is premature and possibly unwise.
Signal: What is one piece of equipment that every commander of a Kampfgruppe should include within their force?
Nagten: Das herz eines kreigers, my young friend. But I have noted that many young officers overlook the value of small recon units, whose ability to gain deployment space, screen flanks and prevent surprise is not valued. When constituting a Kampfgruppe I always allocate at least one small unit.
Thank you very much to Generalleutenant Nagten for his time and thoughtful answers, we know many Wehrmacht boy will be reading and re-reading your answers ahead of the exciting days of battle to come!
GERMAN RESISTANCE STIFFENS
The efforts of the United Nations to liberate France have been met with stiff resistance and fierce counterattacks. We knew this would be no easy task and the enemy is well trained, well equipped, and battle-hardened. All efforts have been made by our brave soldiers to push through and not allow the Germans to set up fortified lines. We have secured our beachheads but now it is paramount that the offensive doesn’t stall before breakthrough is achieved!
The 9th Infantry has sealed the Cherbourg peninsular but the city is still in German hands. Fighting around St. Lo has also been savage and caused great destruction to this beautiful area. The best news comes from the British Sector. They have managed to overcome the German defenders around Villers Bocage and this is putting the German lines in jeopardy.
Brave Leaders Emerge!
Leading from the front and by example two US commanders have distinguished themselves. Captain Harry Notcher is a hard charger. His leadership and intelligence efforts are an inspiration to us all.
Lieutenant General James Westerfield’s VII Corps have been fighting harder than any others to capture Cherbourg and they have led the US offensive. The future of the offensive lies in securing a harbor to move in supplies. Second Lieutenant Generaltham has also been noted as a hard fighter leading his tank formations and pushing for a breakthrough.
Our Valiant Allies!
Four years of Nazi suppression have not dampened the spirit of the French people. Under the Nazi yoke these freedom fighters have grown strong and have risen up to support the invasion. The Forces Francaise de l’intérieur and Franco-Tieures et Partisans have formed fighting units that have joined our forces and been of great assistance with their local knowledge and fighting prowess. But it is not only in the battlefields that their presence is felt. Their raids behind the lines have greatly hindered enemy troop movements and reserves. Our war is truly a war of all freedom loving peoples and United Nations!
Week two of combat combat is is over,
the third week Battlefield Bonuses are shown here and also in the mission PDFs for each sector this week. Remember, if your side controls any of the three sectors from last week here on the Online Campaign, then the bonus from that sector applies to your force during any battle in that same Lane this week. The bonuses are tethered to a specific location stated in that bonus, so they are only available in one location for one week until that location closes.
TANKS players have the following bonus:
Good luck, everyone!
Allied forces have landed on the coast of Normandy with a mind to wrest our prized French possession from us!
Every step of the way, the brave men of Germany have resisted with vigour and fury the advance of the enemy, and that enemy has paid dearly their hubris. Our forces are currently reorganising themselves at new strongpoints, improving our position and giving us a firm base form which to continue our ferocious counterattacks. The beaches were merely the first step in our grand strategy to repel the invaders, and now it falls to us to execute faithfully step two.
As we come to the second week of this great Campaign, we must trust in the capacity of our brave and valiant soldiers to press the enemy line back from where we now stand firm.
The forces of the fatherland find themselves surprisingly idle at the time of writing, with no enemy sighted in or near Villers Bocage. Ever vigilant, our men are ready to face off any enemy attacks as and when they reach the town.
Enemy forces have already begun launching attacks into St Lo, having hit hard and fast. German defensive positions have been reinforced to ensure no breakthrough can or will materialise.
Allied attacks in Cherbourg have been met with swift and deadly force at every turn, giving the enemy pause before launching any further foolish assaults. The men defending Cherbourg surely represent the pinnacle of the Reich’s fighting heroes, and serve as an inspiration to all both on the Battlefront and on the Home Front! Keep up the good work, men!
“People of Western Europe: A landing was made this morning on the coast of France by troops of the Allied Expeditionary Force. This landing is part of the concerted United Nations plan for the liberation of Europe, made in conjunction with our great Russian allies.
This landing is but the opening phase of the campaign in Western Europe. Great battles lie ahead. I call upon all who love freedom to stand with us. Keep your faith staunch – our arms are resolute – together we shall achieve victory.”
– General Eisenhower
Initial reports indicate that all three beachead areas— Orne, Carentan, and Saint Mére Eglise are now under Allied command. In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts, we will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, and security for ourselves in a free world.
Heavy fighting in the Orne Bridges Area
Our British allies have met with heavy German resistance in the Orne Bridges area. The fighting was reaching a stalemate but US intervention tipped the scales our way.
Paratroopers scattered all over Carentan
The night air drop seems to have been scattered all over. Troops pushing inland are encountering pockets of these brave soldiers and everywhere their spirits are high and their objectives are secure despite the dispersed landing.
Though German forces were not eager to abandon their positions in the face of incredible Allied firepower, Sainte-Mere-Eglise has been taken from the enemy after days of heavy fighting. A near-run thing, Axis forces fought tooth and nail to the bitter end.
Crowds of Italian people cheered on the GIs as they liberated the Eternal City. The Italians have suffered long under the facsist yoke and were ready to be liberated. The dogface in Rome are befuddled. No sooner had the 5th Army made its historic entrance into Rome before the biggest news of World War II, the opening of the Second Front, dropped like a bomb on the local scene.
Pfc. Bill Ellis, Mobile, Ala., was walking down the street searching for his pals who had whipped off in a weapons carrier and left him stranded. Like most Gis Ellis had heard the news second hand and didn’t quite believe it. “Sure is a hunk of news” he declared. “I’ve been waiting for it since North Africa. It won‘t be long now till Jerry gives in, I hope, Rome and the Second Front will be too much for him. We oughta be home in six months.”
Breakfast of Champions!
As our GIs are fighting in hostile territory in Northern France they need nourishment, and the US War Department has developed three sets of hearty meals! The K-ration breakfast has all the healthy ingredients the fighting man needs, 4 tasty Chesterfield cigarettes to help him get a good start in the morning, A satchel of instant coffee that is as good as any coffee in Paris, accompanied with four sugars to sweeten the day and give our G.I. the energy he needs. A can of chopped Ham and Eggs, just like a good Sunday breakfast that his mother made accompanies Eight crackers to the taste and texture. Then, Dentyne chewing-gum to freshen the mouth while giving protection to the teeth. Light up another Chesterfield and your GI is now in fit form for battle!
With one week of combat done and dusted, the second week Battlefield Bonuses are shown here and also in the mission PDFs for each sector this week. Remember, if your side controls any of the three sectors form last week here on the Online Campaign, then the bonus from that sector applies to your force during any battle in that same Lane this week.
This Week, after capturing all three Sectors, the Allies have the following Bonuses applied:
For week two, the Bonuses up for grabs are for use in Week 3:
Tanks Players will have the following bonus for their Week 2 Battles:
Every battlefield in the Global Campaign is worth something, not just as a step towards victory, but also in offering the victors in each sector a special bonus for the following sector. Here’s what you’re fighting for in Week 1.
*the Orne Bridges Bonus applies to each 50 points in your Force.
Each bonus is earned by the victorious side in that sector and its effects are applied to the following week. When the Map updates each week, the Sectors that were fought over will lock, and the side with the most victories in that Sector will capture that Sector. When your side controls a Sector once the Map updates, you will be able to apply the bonus from that Sector to battles in the following single Sector in the same lane for the next week. These bonuses give your side an extra layer of strategy in deciding which sector is worth investing the most blood and treasure in. It’s not only about victory points towards the Campaign’s total outcome, but also which perk is going to give your side the most benefit.
Welcome to the D-Day: Global Campaign. For the next six weeks, you will fight for your chosen side to secure victory in one of the great campaigns for the war: the D-Day landings at Normandy and the liberation of France.
The Allies will land on the beaches and descend from the skies, week by week advancing up the three lanes to wrest France from the grip of the German war machine.
Axis forces will fight tooth and nail to hold Fortress Europe and protect their conquests from the advancing Allies.
To win, your side must fight over the weeks to earn points towards your side as you inch ever closer to victory.
Each week, we will update the Campaign Map to show the progress of the Campaign, and tell the story of the battles fought through news bulletins and featured battle reports both here on the Campaign site and on the Flames Of War site.
All that’s left then, is to wish each side the best of luck in their efforts.
Good luck, fight hard.
During the six-week course of this Global Campaign, not only will you fight for the ultimate victory of your side- whether that be the Axis or the Allies, but you will also fight to earn Achievements for yourself.
Your achievements will show your commitment to the D-Day: Global Campaign, and are awarded to players who have performed great deeds as commanders of their troops in battle. Some Achievements will come easily, others will be hard-fought rewards for facing down the enemy and coming out on top.
Awarded for registering your account, At the Front is easily the most simple Achievement for picking up- others will not be so simple.
A Taste of Victory is awarded for your first battle report victory, something every commander will be vying for. As you pile up the wins, this achievement will be overshadowed by more prestigious awards for winning more and more games. the more you play and the more you win, the more impressive your collection of battle Achievements will be.
While most Achievements can be earned by any player during the Campaign, there are a collection of Achievements specifically for TANKS players, like the Achievement Breakthrough, which is awarded for reporting a battle from the second TANKS scenario and is one of a handful of Achievements that can only be picked up by TANKS commanders.
Each Achievement you earn will add a certain amount of XP to your D-Day: Global Campaign profile, which will, in turn, help you rise through the ranks from the new recruit to the seasoned veteran commander easily identified by the rank on their profile.
Remember- the key to earning Achievements is to play and report battles. The more detailed the report, the more points go to your side. The more effective and exceptional your command on the battlefield is, the more Achievements you will pick up for your medal tally.
On the 28th we are launching a massive global campaign with our partners over at OnTableTop. During this campaign you and your friends will march through Normandy reliving the key moments that define the Overlord Campaign. Defend the beaches of Normandy or try to trap the German retreating forces in a pocket and fight over Paris and the liberation of France!
During the Campaign you will fight along three lanes that highlight key moments of Operation Overlord. Each week these will move forward to the next location and new suggested weekly missions. How well you do in each of these areas will help determine who will win the overall campaign as well as give you some awesome in-game bonuses in that lane for the following week.
The D-Day: Global Campaign is a great way to get involved in the Flames Of War community in your area, and as the first ever Flames Of War Global Campaign, is sure to be a massive event. Our previous two Team Yankee saw huge enthusiasm from the wargaming community with battles fought all over the world by clubs and stores everywhere.
Not only will Flames Of War Late War forces be tasked with fighting this epic campaign, but this D-Day Campaign will be our first ever multi-system campaign, with TANKS players being able to join the fight and contribute to the outcomes of each battle and the Campaign on the whole.
How The Campaign Works
Your persistent campaign account will rank up and earn achievements based on how well you perform in battle. Results are recorded on the Campaign site in order to determine which side will claim victory in each sector. As the Campaign progresses along each of the lanes the winners in each sector will be tallied up to finally determine which side will be victorious at the Campaign’s conclusion.
You will be able to earn more points for their side by sharing battle reports with photographs and detailed accounts of the games they play. These reports can be viewed by other participants in the campaign and their quality voted on by those other participants, which will reward players who write more detailed reports not only with more XP towards their profile and more points towards their side’s efforts in the Campaign for Normandy, but also with personal achievements for their efforts.
Each sector in each lane will have its own recommended mission designed to reflect the historic battles that took place in each of those locations. TANKS players will also have their own recommended mission each week. If you don’t feel like running the recommended mission or you’ve already played it and want to play a different mission you can go ahead and play any mission you like and when you report the results of your battle the results will still feed directly into determining the sector’s victors.
After working so hard over the three months of Hobby League, the D-Day: Global Campaign is the culmination of so much effort. The force you’ve put together for Hobby League is the force you can play the Global Campaign with, fighting day by day, sector by sector to bring your side victory. Not only will the winners of the Campaign be able to hold their heads high as masters of military command, there will also be a variety of great prizes for entering and playing in the Campaign.
The biggest prizes of all will come for the Stores and Clubs that take part in the Campaign. Each Club and Store in Europe, the US, and the Rest of the World will gain one entry when they register their group on the Campaign site and one entry for every battle report posted as part of that club or store. At the end of the Campaign, one Club and one Store from each region will be drawn to win the following prize:
There are plenty of ways to get involved with the Global Campaign. Your local store or club can pick up a copy of the D-Day Global Campaign pack here and have a focal point for your Campaign progress with weekly games with your regular gaming group. Another way of getting involved is simply to jump online and sign up to join the Campaign with your own profile and then when you do play battles as it suits you you can add those to the Campaign site- just be sure to encourage your opponent(s) to create their own profile for the Campaign so you can link your reports. Finally, if you’re not able to take part over the entirety of the Campaign or if you want to fight for your side in a competitive environment, you can check out the selection of tournaments that are part of the Campaign and enter your tournament results into the campaign.