1. Pregame Notes
As Rennenkampf, commander of the Russian First Army, I plan to advance cautiously along the Kovno-Konigsberg rail line. My main concern is that, by advancing too quickly, I will expose my supply line and Southern flank to a German raid or worse. Most of the German army is initially deployed against me, so it is quite likely that I will be hit early and hard from the front.
the pace of my advance, my objective is to capture Gumbinnen
in the first week (turn 2) and Insterberg in the week
after (turn 3). Once I have secured a
line between Insterberg and Angerberg
(at the top of the lakes), I intend to secure my northern flank by capturing Tilsit (turn 4), and then deploy the IC corps in the woods
to the East of Labiam, which by that time will be of
little use because the cavalry will be fatigued. By then my reserves will have arrived and
they will be committed to securing the territory to the East of the lakes,
including the town of
2. Turn 2
· First Impulse (2 days). Despite my urging to the contrary, Nakhichevan, commander of the IC Corps has insisted on a cautious advance. Lacking significant cavalry reconnaissance, the rest of the First Army advanced only to the outskirts of Stalluponen. The Germans, however, retreat before my superior (?) force, and we occupy the town. Air and cavalry reconnaissance fails to pinpoint any real concentrations of Germans other than some activity near a rail station. I requisition the II Corps from the South to join the First Army and protect its flank.
Impulse (2 days). Summer heat slows
the various armies down. All of my Corps
are now advancing.
The IC Corps has overcome its initial hesitancy and aggressively scouts
forward, penetrating approximately 40 km into
· Third Impulse (3 days). Our advance is picking up speed. All my leaders advance forward. A light rain, however, prevented aerial reconnaissance, but the newly inspired IC Corps moved forward aggressively again and discovered various elements of the German 1c division. We overran a motorized battalion, but the rest of the division slowly withdrew and screened my advance. A concerted effort by XX captured Insterberg. My army is now a little too spread out advancing on a front 65 or so km wide, but I don’t believe the Germans are pressuring my front, so we will continue to advance quickly.
3. Turn 3
Impulse (4 days). We win the
initiative and I opt for two big impulses on the theory that there are fewer
opportunities for the Germans to force march (and
fewer combats to kill Russians). Well,
the best laid plans of mice and men! Our
first big (4 day) impulse and virtually every unit in my army is on hold! Only IC
with two and a half attached divisions is flexible. My ability to advance is so restricted that
not too much progress is made. On a
positive note, IC did sweep through Tilsit and
reached the outskirts of the woods and swamp East of
Impulse (3 days). Finally, the
Russian army resumes its advance!
Moreover, IC adopts a flexible defensive posture in the North. The Army’s reorientation to the South is now
complete. The IC Corps screens the woods
Given this impulse’s unexpected successes, I am going to have First Army seize the central lake position over the next week and the have the reserve corps swing around South to take Lyck and establish contact with the Second Army.
4. Turn 4
· First Impulse (4 days). We take the initiative and sweep around the northernmost lake from the West, while forces from the East move South of Lotzen, pocketing the German IR Corps in between the lakes! The trapped German corps tries to escape and hurls itself at the surrounding Russian divisions, but is stopped cold by the entrenched 26th division. The IR Corps must be close to running out of ammunition and has been incurring substantial losses. Fierce counterattacks by the surrounding Russian corps drive the German IR Corps into cul de sac, the only exit from which is now guarded by my IV Corps. The German IR Corps bravely entrenches and awaits relief, but the prisoner points are already starting to trickle in.
In the South, Lyck falls and our reserves close in on Johannisberg. Soon we will link up with the embattled Second Army (I hope). I intend to transfer a full reserve corps of three divisions to him when we link up if he is in bad shape.
Second Impulse (3 days). The
German IR Corps is repeatedly attacked and holds out for a couple of days
before a mass surrender. The XX and
5. Turn 5
· First Impulse (2 days). My army consolidates and pushes forward through the lake district to the edge of the swamps North of Ostroleka. No sign of the Russian Second Army. Still only minor skirmishes with the German rearguard. I am in a very dangerous and exposed position. The IC Corps is holding a line approximately 100 km long stretching from the coast all the way down to the lakes. If the Germans hit me in the North my entire army could be cut off from its supply line. However, I am counting on the fact that he may assume my army is still up around Kongsberg, which may give me a chance to fall on his flank or rear – assuming I can find him.
· Second Impulse (2 days). Despite my urgings that the First Army move forward as quickly as possible, the entire First Army holds its position with only small advances. I assume the commanders’ reluctance to advance is a result of the fact that the entire army is struggling at the end of its supply tether.
Impulse (3 days). Still struggling at
the end of our supply tether, the Army continues to hold and only modest gains
are made. A combination of logistical
constraints and the innate caution of my Army and Corps commanders has prevented us from penetrating further into
6. Turn 6
· First Impulse (2 days). My army consolidates and pushes forward through the lake district to the edge of the swamps North of Ostroleka. No sign of the Russian Second Army. Still only minor skirmishes with the German rearguard. As we are struggling at the end of our supply line, we reorient towards the West with the goal of taking Bischofsburg and (with luck) Allenstein. A reserve division that is posted at the end of my line by the swamp reports fleeing Russian soldiers in some disarray heading East. That is not a good sign for the Russian Second Army.
Impulse (2 days). Struggling at the
end of our supply tether, we take Bischofsburg and Bischofstein. Still
encountering only light German resistance.
More German units are identified in front of our line. Nevertheless, we still have not found the
core of the German Eighth Army. A report
from the Russian Second Army tells of large series of battles inside the
Russian border. Apparently, the German
Eighth Army is still in
Impulse (3 days). In a fierce battle
with mixed German units, including a landwehr
division, we take Allenstein. Our line runs from the edge of the
Game Totals for the Russian First Army
Russian VPs for German cities = 210 VPs
Total German Losses = 63 SPs (Approximately 94,000 men)
Total German Casualties = 38 SPs (Approximately 57,000 men)
Total German Prisoners = 25 SPs (Approximately 37,000 men)
Total Russian Losses = 25 SPs (Approximately 37,000 men)