Eastern Front Partisans

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edleland
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Eastern Front Partisans

Post by edleland »

Folks,

In an attempt to distract myself from the dumpster fire that is reality right now, I've started trying to piece together how to construct a Soviet Partisan & German Security troops campaign, probably centered around 281 Security Division behind AG North. Unfortunately, detailed, reliable information on this subject can be a little tricky to come by. Before I get too deep into design, I want to make sure I'm not missing anything out there in the literature. This is what I have so far:

The War Behind the Eastern Front: Soviet Partisans in North West Russia 1941-1944 by Alexander Hill
Soviet Partisan vs German Security Soldier: Eastern Front 1941–44 by Alexander Hill
Soviet Partisans in World War II by John Alexander Armstrong
The Soviet Partisan Movement 1941-1944 by Edgar Howell
War in the Wild East: The German Army and Soviet Partisans by Ben Shepard
The Soviet Partisan Movement, 1941-1944: A Critical Historiographical Analysis by Leonid Grenkevich
Kleinkrieg: The German Experience with Guerrilla Wars, from Clausewitz to Hitler by Charles Melson
The Red Army's Do-It-Yourself, Nazi-Bashing Guerrilla Warfare Manual: The Partizan's Companion, 1943 by Lester Grau
Soviet Partisan 1941–44 by Nik Cornish

I don't have but am aware of:

Stalin's Guerrillas: Soviet Partisans in World War II by Kenneth Slepyan
Red Partisan: The Memoir of a Soviet Resistance Fighter on the Eastern Front by Nikolai Obryn'ba
Combat and Genocide on the Eastern Front: The German Infantry's War, 1941-1944 by Jeff Rutherford

Am I missing anything useful? I'm finding the research fascinating so far and am hopeful that I can get something gameable out of it. I suspect that there will be some aspects of the campaign that will feel more Sharp Practice than regular Chain of Command...

Has anyone gone down this road before? If so, I’d love to hear what worked and what didn’t!

Thanks!
Ed

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Baldie
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Baldie »

Looking forward to this
Interests

Getting slaughtered by a surprising amount of opponents.

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Seret
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Seret »

I did some lists for those forces a while back and I've got a draft of a mini campaign written up but tbh it could use a re-write.

Partisan list

German security platoon list

The rough sketch for the campaign was to have the partisans attack a German outpost guarding a road. If they take it the Germans get to mobilise a reaction force which has to come to the rescue, with the obligatory convoy ambush on the way.

siggian
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by siggian »

"Red Partisan: The Memoir of a Soviet Resistance Fighter on the Eastern Front by Nikolai Obryn'ba" - I have this and read it

The big problem is the asymmetrical aspect of this. One side usually has overwhelming superiority. You're going to have to be inventive with the victory conditions to make it work rather than try to make each game work.

The one thing I noticed in Red Partisan was that the partisans most frequent target seemed to be non-German security personnel (usually former soviet subjects) with the objective of removing them from the war by elimination or intimidation. They didn't fare so well when taking on the German army.

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Capt Fortier
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Capt Fortier »

The US Army Center of Military History has a number of online resources published in the early 1950s, usually sourced from captured German officers working with their new Allies. A good example is: Rear Area Security in Russia: The Soviet Second Front Behind the German Lines (1951)
Capt Fortier

“Un optimiste, c'est un homme qui plante deux glands et qui s'achète un hamac.” - Jean de Lattre de Tassigny

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Seret
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Seret »

siggian wrote:
Thu Jun 04, 2020 11:05 pm
The big problem is the asymmetrical aspect of this. One side usually has overwhelming superiority.
Well, that's often true in any military operation. Fair fights are rare, but we usually ignore that in wargaming. I think partisan operations actually suit a game for platoon sized forces better than front line forces do. You're far more likely to see an action with 20-50 men a side in rear areas.

On paper the Germans had more troops but they were widely dispersed. And the low quality of most troops engaged in anti-partisan ops means there's less of a mismatch in capabilities. In CoC terms I think there's a lot of scope for platoon-sized green-on-green actions.

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Truscott Trotter
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Truscott Trotter »

Well have been contemplating Warsaw 44 uprising campaign for some time but you have to tread very carefully when dealing with such controversial topics.

edleland
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by edleland »

Seret wrote:
Thu Jun 04, 2020 11:01 pm
I did some lists for those forces a while back and I've got a draft of a mini campaign written up but tbh it could use a re-write.

Partisan list

German security platoon list

The rough sketch for the campaign was to have the partisans attack a German outpost guarding a road. If they take it the Germans get to mobilise a reaction force which has to come to the rescue, with the obligatory convoy ambush on the way.
These lists are quite good and I can’t believe I hadn’t seen them on your site. The only tweak I might add is starting the Partisan squads smaller with a support option to add additional riflemen.

I was thinking of trying a longer term campaign framework where each side allocates forces/priorities each campaign turn, that generates a game and the aftermath effects popular support, partisan supply and the war at the front. Tricky to balance but it’s an interesting problem to think about

edleland
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by edleland »

Truscott Trotter wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:03 am
Well have been contemplating Warsaw 44 uprising campaign for some time but you have to tread very carefully when dealing with such controversial topics.
The challenge is to neither whitewash the bad stuff nor to gratuitously focus on it, especially if it’s not salient to the situation being gamed. With Warsaw it’s front and center - there’s no way to avoid it.

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Seret
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Re: Eastern Front Partisans

Post by Seret »

edleland wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:29 pm
The challenge is to neither whitewash the bad stuff nor to gratuitously focus on it, especially if it’s not salient to the situation being gamed.
Yeah, I think it's dishonest to ignore it, but focusing too much on it is distasteful. It's a difficult tightrope.

What I went for with generic partisan ops in the countryside was a campaign rule where neither side takes prisoners. Where ATSE would normally indicate someone becomes a POW they are instead dead.

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