| Strachwitz at Kursk
On the 9th July 1943, Panzergruppe Strachwitz spearheads the attack on the Soviet fortified village of Novossolevka during Operation Citadel.
Map size: 3200 x 2800m
Total points combined: Approx 20 000 combined.
Designers Note: This scenario is classed as semi-historical as we have had to make some compromises with the map scale and unit sizes to fit them into a CMBB battle frame.
The map is at about 1/3rd scale.
Playing the Battle
Best played as H2H or as Human against Soviet AI with AI sticking to 'computer player uses scenario default'. The AI provides a tough fight in this so will not need a CEB bonus, but then you super warriors might just want a bit more angst in your lives...
If played as H2H more experienced player should play the Germans.
Before playing please check your side specific brief very carefully - there is critical information contained therein.
9 July 1943 0800 hours
The last great German strategic offensive in the East, "Operation Citadel", is in its fifth brutal day. The grand German plan to conduct a classic pincers assault to cut off the "bulge" of Soviet forces around the southern Russian city of Kursk has already largely failed in the north in the face of the unprecedented strength and depth of the three-tiered Soviet defences.
For the "Panzer Count", Oberst Hyazinth Graf Strachwitz, the battle has already been marked by bitter controversy and personal tragedy. At the peak of his prowess as a holder of the Knight's Cross with Oakleaves and Swords, and in command of the veteran and fully re-fitted Panzerregiment Grossdeutschland, Strachwitz had prepared for the battle fully aware of the terrible challenge in front of him, but confident that under his dynamic leadership the panzertruppen would prevail.
However, larger forces had conspired to thwart him at the outset. Hitler's almost magical belief in the superiority of German technology had caused him to delay the Kursk offensive until an array of brand new armored fighting vehicles could reach the front.
At the last minute prior to the start of the July 5 assault, an entire regiment of the new Panther tanks, nearly 200 in all, had been attached to Großdeutschland. The tanks were powerful but beset by teething problems, and their crews had had little time to train together or even test their radios.
To make matters worse, at the insistence of General Guderian, at the very last minute Oberst Karl Decker was appointed overall commander of both Grossdeutschland's panzer regiments in a new Panzer Brigade 10, shunting the brilliant and proud Strachwitz into a subordinate role.
Decker, a good commander under normal circumstances, badly bungled the first day of the assault as the nearly 350 tanks under his command became hopelessly tangled in swampy terrain and Soviet minefields, and then were then badly shot up by Soviet defences, with the Panthers taking severe losses.
Furious at this travesty, Strachwitz had gone over the head of his division commander General Hornlein straight to the Korps Commander, General von Knoblesdorff, and demanded that Decker be sidelined and command returned to him. Knoblesdorff acquiesced and as of July 6 Strachwitz regained command of Großdeutschland's panzer forces including the few remaining Panthers, and got the division moving toward Kursk.
But now, on the morning of July 9, with the fall of the heavily fortified town of Verkhopeny'e, the road to Oboyan and beyond to Kursk appeared to be open at last. Before him lay a broad valley with a small village named Novosolevka at the far end, terrain seemingly made to order for another classic cavalry Strachwitz thrust. Was the breakthrough finally at hand? Or had the desperate Vatutin managed to plug the gap with reinforcements during the night?
This scenario has an associated command map and German briefing sketch map. Both are included in the zip file.