Seelow Heights: The Center
Road to Berlin #54
|(Defender) Germany||vs||Soviet Union (Attacker)|
|Germany||20th Motorized Infantry Division|
|Soviet Union||57th Guards Rifle Division|
|Overall Rating, 1 vote|
|Scenario Rank: --- of 588|
|Parent Game||Road to Berlin|
|Visibility||Day & Night|
|Maps||4: 14, 16, 17, 18|
|Layout Dimensions||86 x 56 cm
34 x 22 in
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
|Road to Berlin||maps + counters|
With Berlin in their sights, Soviet troops had only one final barrier to overcome before breaking into the German capital. On the Seelow Heights just east of the city, the last organized troops of Ninth Army dug in to try to hold back the attackers.
Both sides showed fearsome determination in the war's final field battle, heedless of their own casualties with so much at stake. Slowly, the Red Army ground forward, but at day's end had not broken through the heights. But the Germans wouldn't last much longer. The Thousand Year Reich's lifespan could be measured now in days.
|AFV Rules Pertaining to this Scenario's Order of Battle|
|5 Errata Items|
All Russian units are Guards. 24 x RIF should be 24 x INF. Use RKKA units when there aren't enough Guards units to fill out the scenario.
(PG-Tank Dude on 2010 Apr 30)
The reduced direct fire value of the Heer HMG became 5-5 starting with Fall of France.
(plloyd1010 on 2015 Jul 31)
The morale and combat modifiers of German Sergeant #1614 should be "0", not "8".
Kommissars never get morale or combat modifiers. Ignore misprints.
All Guards T-34/85 tanks should have AT fire values of 7-7.
|Road to Berlin, Scenario #54, Seelow Heights: The Center|
This one could take a while just to setup. So far I have the four map sections setup but I am now trying to decide where to put the six Entrenchment markers, which could be the most important thing in this scenario, other then victory it's self. Its hard to tell which East-West roads the Russians will try an clear, so the two Western boards must be divided up into half of the German forces as the Soviets could enter in force on either of the two Eastern boards or both. So far a nice looking 4 map scenario! No units will setup until tomorrow, It's too late now and I still need to study the lay of the land!
Here is my setup of the German! I think I must have tried three times to get it right. The Soviets are on the edge waiting to come on board, kind of like a Day Invasion there are so many. I still don’t know in which order I’ll bring them on but most likely I’ll attack the East-West highway to the North, that doesn’t go through the town on the hills, though both highways go through the hilly heights, the Town direction could be a tough nut to crack. But, if I had setup the bulk of my German units on the other highway, then the Russians would have attacked there, so you really have to divide the German forces into two groups and as the Soviet, decide on one main route to attack and use one small screening force to pin down the other group of Germans, so they can’t combine groups. Bring the Russian on board won’t be difficult, as first 14 turns the visibility is only one hex in the darkness. I should be able to pull along side all of the first German defenses before they can respond and do some back door flanking as well.
I did notice while picking out my units for both sides, that I had to borrow One Soviet Engineer, one SMG, one SU-122, one ATR, one 82mm and of course the six M3’s from the normal Russian army to fill in for not having enough guards units. Not a big deal, as they all come out of the same box! And I am assuming that the 24 x RIF are 24 Guard INF. I don’t know why but in this game, this is the only scenario that uses an on board BM-13 Katyusha counter? All the rest are off board, unlike Heroes, which uses them more but very cool to have it on board. Well just my observation for now but this scenario kind of, in a strange way, reminds me of a D-Day Invasion but no ocean. Lots of off board artillery for the Soviets and air support as well. Unit losses don’t count on either side, so this will be a bloody one, to see if the Russians can clear one East-West road of Germans units. Posting #3 Don't worry, I won’t post all 40 turns, as I don't have the time but I'll do a couple more, maybe the halfway point and the end of the battle. In my off board Soviet assembly area, I still haven't decided on how to stack the units and who to put at the spear of the attack, maybe one of those JSU-152 conquering beasts. I still wish I had more Soviet Leaders and this will be a tricky thing as well, dividing the leader counters up!
Posting #4 Five turns into the battle and not shot has been fired yet. I am bring my Russian forces to within two hexes of the Germans before attacking with everything I have. The visibility is still one hex until turn fourteen, so I really need to get my Soviets forces in position before sun-rise. Hopefully a few more turns and I'll pull the trigger. It's hard holding back that Russian armor so long, but I am trying not to repeat history and I am waiting for all that Russian Infantry and support units to get in place. There is a big hurry to beat the dawn. With in two more turns or so Marshall Zhukov will lose his patience, ready or not! The Artillery is also waiting for some good spotting activity, as this is Germany now, with no good Razvedka spotting. I feel it shouldn't be used in this scenario.
So far, it looks pretty dicey on both sides of the field but I still feel the Soviet have the upper hand but dawn will not bring good thing, so I must fight on. I did loss one step of my JSU-152 Conquering Beast! Advice to the Soviet players; be careful of the German Panzerfausts in assault hexes. Yes it is very nice to assault in a hex with both Infantry with Leaders & Tanks but those Panzerfausts will start taking a total and I really like this rule, it just feels more real in the 1944-45 years. Also as the Soviet player, must keep good care of your 3 engineer units, as that plus one modifier really helps against Entrenchments, and you will need it. I didn’t take my own advice and one of my Engineers is running away from the Battlefield demoralized. I don’t have enough Russian Leaders in this scenario to chase him down, so he is on his own. The Kommissar is on the other Southern Road hex, helping some one else. The Germans at this point, look in trouble but they are in a good position to inflict some real pain on the Russian side, on turn nine, as they have a lot of demoralized Soviets, sitting in their dugouts & Entrenchment, that will soon be running away or losing steps but still there is a second wave of Russians waiting in the wings, so who knows? Posting #6 Just a quick update! Not much to report, as I have only done about a turn and half more. More step losses on both sides, more assault hexes and maybe the south road is starting to look better for the Russians. I doubt this scenario will go 40 turns, once daylight hits, things could really be interesting, if the German hexes aren't all assaulted by then. My strategy has worked pretty well so far, having the Russians hit in one big mass in the dark. We'll see latter this week if it pays off?
Posting #7 The Russians are starting to get the upper-hand and still no day light to help the Germans out.
Posting #8 Just when I thought the Russians had the upper hand, the Germans had a pretty good turn 12 and now I am thinking the Soviets may have to shift their focus to the Southern road, which was just intended to be a diversion attack but is doing much better then the full strength Northern road battle. I have about 25 full strength units & leaders off the board, destroyed and I am not sure how many half strength & full units still on the map but still a lot. These mass assaults, adjacent attacks & huge bombardments in the night are taking a large toll. Losses in this scenario don't matter. This is a good scenario so far. A lot of small and big decisions to make! I really like this one so far. Two dead German leaders & one dead Russian leader so far out of the dead pile. The Russian can't afford the loss too many leaders in this scenario, to keep the Infantry going. Most of my M3 halftracks are burning, along with one complete JSU-152, two SU-100 and half step of T-34/85's. The Germans have one complete Hetzer unit burning and two AT-gun units taken out. The rest of the units losses are infantry & Infantry type units on both sides. Still a lot of battle left and a lot of counters to push!
I have pulled most of my Soviet forces out of the Southern road, just leaving a covering force there and will attack the Northern road with most of my forces. There is no way to take both roads at this point, nor do I need to, to win. If the Germans can take care off the covering forces, maybe they can reinforce the North but I doubt it, not with all the Artillery & Air-power they would have to encounter to get there. It is now dawn, so everything is in full view.
It’s time to call the battle! After 19 or twenty turns the Soviets pulled most of their units out of the Southern Road, just leaving a covering force to prevent the Germans from reinforcing the Northern Road area. The Russians only have two objective left to take at this point to clear the North (East-West) Road, one Demoralized dug-in half step Infantry unit with Leader and one full step German Disrupted infantry unit, unprotected with two leaders on the road, kind of a road bump. The only thing that could reinforce this area are units tie up in an assault hex on the hill a little North of the action, one half step of a Hetzer tank destroy unit, which will never make through all the T-34/85’s and one Infantry & Leader counter that have managed to pull out of the Southern region but will never make it through all the clear hexes in daylight with all that Russian artillery. At this point, I concede to the Russians, as it would take only about two more turn to clear the last two units from the road and the Soviet still have twenty turns to do it! I claim a Russian victory for Scenario: 54. In real action however, I think the Russian would have taken the Seelow Heights high ground on only the Northern Road and would have to stop the offense to regroup before heading West again, as they took a lot of casualties in assault guns/tank destroyers, Infantry of all types, all their APC’s/halftracks and two Leaders as well. There are also a lot of half strength and Disrupted Soviet units around.
Overall, it was a fun Scenario to play and it kept me busy for over a week. I usually just played a turn or two after work, before bed or two or three on the weekend days. Two people most likely could have played it out in 4 to 6 hours if it went the full 40 turns. My strategy as the Russians paid-off. I used a massive wave of infantry & armor and closed adjacent to the enemy in the night. I took my hits, next turn fired DF & AT-fire directly into the enemy hexes with a Column two modifier for Direct Fire and a column one modifier for AT-fire. I also Bombarded those hexes, with everything I could. Yes I took heavy casualties from return fire and some friendly Bombardment fire as well but I just kept reinforcing and then when the enemy was weaker, I assaulted the crap out of the hexes.
Again Russian Victory! One more comment on the Seelow Heights: The Center.
Those entrenchments counters can be a real pain but as the Russians I was able to take over two of them on the North Road while putting the third in an assault hex dispute. On the South Road, the Germans kept control of all three. I am sure I had a pretty good offense as the Russian but maybe changing the attack on the Southern road to include, less forces next time around. As for The German, that is more difficult. I think I would put more Dug-in and Entrenchment counters on the road and closer together, to support each other better. Maybe I would put just a few AT-Gun on the hills farther away from the action to support the German Infantry & Tank Destroyer units latter in the game, when there is more daylight.