waehuun
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What war plans do you use?

Wed Jul 31, 2013 5:26 pm

The title says it.

Which plans and options do you use any why? Which ones don’t you use?

Here are my favourites.

Germany:
• Schlieffen plan (a must, otherwise it won’t feel like WW1)

Austria-Hungary:
• König plan (attack Serbia in force, use with Accept Ultimatum), or
• Eugen plan (I always go on a defensive stance against Russia anyways)

Russia:
• ? (forgot the name, the one that says attack Austria-Hungary in force. Germany has too good troops and I would only lose a lot of men in an attack anyways)

France:
Not sure. :bonk:

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Random
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Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:01 pm

Have tried most of them at some point and with variable degrees of success but there are hundreds of potential combinations. I think my favourites are:

German - War Plan Moltke with Diplomatic Poker option. This often results in Italy joining the Central Powers.

France - Plan XVI. Still prone to France suffering huge casualties but a better chance of having significant forces that can be switched West if the Germans come through Belgium. Against the Rupprecht plan on one occasion, smashed the southern German armies before they could make major gains against Switzerland and inflicted losses that Germany never recovered from.

Russia - Czar Plan. Austria is the weaker enemy and there is a distinct possibility of hurting her badly at the start while stopping the Germans in the North. Consider War Plan Option Radio Messages to eliminate the combat bonuses otherwise provided to the Germans particularly if the Prinz or Eugen Plans, which concentrate against Russia are chosen.

Austria Hungary - Koenig Plan. None of the Austrian War Plans are pretty and if this plan is used against the Czar Plan, Austria can quickly find herself in the hurt locker. However, stomping Serbia and closing off an entire front can reap huge long-term benefits should you be able to pull it off.

Other than Diplomatic Poker for Germany, War Plan options are pretty much selected to try new strategies.

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TheDoctorKing
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Fri Aug 02, 2013 10:47 pm

You wouldn't want to do Diplomatic Poker with any of the western-front offensive options, I would say. Kind of wastes the declaration of war against Belgium and/or Switzerland.

Getting Italy in on the side of the Central Powers can be decisive. The small French army on the Italian border can be overrun pretty quickly and the Italians should be able to take Marseilles and even, conceivably, Lyon. This will really cripple the French. Also, the combined Italian and Austro-Hungarian navies should be able to control the Med unless the British transfer significant forces from Britain, which then gives the German Grand Fleet the chance to sortie and gain control of the North Sea. I don't know if German control of the North Sea has any blockade effect but it sure should.
Stewart King

"There is no substitute for victory"

Depends on how you define victory.

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Random
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Sun Aug 11, 2013 5:55 pm

You wouldn't want to do Diplomatic Poker with any of the western-front offensive options, I would say. Kind of wastes the declaration of war against Belgium and/or Switzerland.

I don't know, my $0.02 CAD is a bit different. All Diplomatic Poker really costs the German's is the August pre-turn. If you go into the West on the assumption that knocking France out before winter is not a practical undertaking, then you can concentrate on planning for the long haul and take north-eastern France and the Channel Ports too. Even if you do not invade Belgium, the chances of keeping Britain out for the duration is unlikely (however admittedly possible) but as you say, bringing Italy in from the start as a member of the Central Powers can be decisive.

-C

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Shri
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Fri Nov 08, 2013 6:48 am

GERMANY- Schlieffen always, have tried MOLTKE too a few times in combination with DIPLOMATIC POKER, KRONPRINZ plan is a good if you want to have general massacre- useful to have DIPLOMATIC POKER here also.

Austria- EUGEN mostly, at times- KOENIG (good to knock out serbs) to try and push back if not knock out serbs.

Note:- i find rumania more difficult than italy to manage.. a very long frontier to garrison.. Italy you have those 7th and 8th mythical armies(they were not part of Austria's 1914 armies historically)

France- Plan XVI/XVII anything.. all are bad.

Russia- Czar plan to rush Austria is good.

P.S: - Good Morale is a must have, very vital in initial stages due to massive casualties depleting morale. Also Volunteers option is good.

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Shri
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Fri Nov 08, 2013 6:56 am

I just wanted to know an opinion as to how historically plausible is ITALY in the CP?
As most of the authors and books- KEEGAN etc., write how ITALIAN navy was built to counter the AUSTRIAN in the adriatic and not the FRENCH in the MED.
considering that and also the issue of "TYROL", how much was it possible/plausible?
The best option the CP hoped was neutral ITALY.
On the other hand GERMANY had hopes from GREECE and RUMANIA to remain benevolently neutral. (HOHENZOLLERN Kings) similar to Scandinavia and Netherlands rather than what happened historically.

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Random
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Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:09 am

Keegan has a typical British bias where Italy is concerned; some might consider it heresy but in the last 6-8 years there have been far better works published.

There is no doubt that there was anti-Austrian feeling and the Triple Alliance membership certainly made some segments of the Italian body politic uncomfortable. The Kingdom of Italy's first foreign war was against Austria and her independence was won with the aid of France but none of that meant that abandoning her treaty allies was inevitable. Besides, the Triple Alliance was a defensive alliance and Austria-Hungary's declaration of war on Serbia and Germany's declaration of war on Russia gave Italy a way out that did in no way violate the letter or the spirit of the treaty.

Although Italian Chief of the General Staff General Luigi Cadorna was very pro-German, there had been no substantive staff talks between the two allies and none at all between Austria and Italy. Attempts by Austrian Fleet Commander Admiral Haun to introduce a common naval signal book in 1913 foundered on parochial grounds with neither side willing to cooperate as would have been necessary for joint operations. As early as 1907 or so the German war planners deleted the Italian force they had hoped would be made available to supplement the forces on the Left Wing in Alsace.

So I would suggest that while the mood in the Italian government was probably split, most Italian leaders were happy that the precipitous declarations of war by Austria and Germany came as a relief as it released them from their treaty obligations and allowed them to bargain their belligerence to the highest bidder. The prospect of gaining the Tyrol and the Dalmatian coast proved far too seductive so refusing the territorial bribes offered by Britain and France was probably unlikely since Austria could offer nothing comparable and Germany nothing at all.

All that said however, Italy's relations with France can hardly be called rosy and it would probably be an exaggeration to state that the British Empire was particularly popular so there is a good possibility that, had things been handled differently Italy would have stood by her treaty obligations. Of course had events been handled differently there might have never been the Great War.

In WW1G the Diplomatic Poker option and D'Annunzio Political Actions actually represent the real situation very well in my opinion.

Mark Thompson's The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front 1915-19 paints a pretty good picture of Italian political machinations between the July Crisis and the Italian declaration of war in May 1915.

Romania was shamelessly bribed to enter the war but it is interesting to see how Britain, who ostensibly went to war in the defence of neutral Belgium, ran roughshod over Greek neutrality with entirely the same sort of national self-interest as did Germany in their demands to Brussels in August 1914.

Just my $0.02 CAD.

-C

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Shri
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Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:42 am

Ludendorff writes about the Greek and Rumanian episodes with a lot of bitter after taste and blames British propaganda a lot for the bad German image, this was picked up by Adolf Hitler too.
The British have been past masters for the past 500 years and for a good period of this time they ran their world to their like. The Spanish, Dutch, French, Russians, Germans and Italians have all got the short end of the stick but surprisingly very few times in history did they put their differences aside to target the hated English.
(After all even the Irish hate the English still fought for Britain).
So, in all British Diplomacy was par excellence.

Also in the July crisis there is the whole persona of "GREY", most of the cabinet was in the dark about the military talks and support to France, there were threats of resignations, actual resignations, even a chance for a mid-term election in July 1914, anything was plausible/possible. Also the English hated the Russians and disliked the French, the Royal Family was wholly German except for Edward's anti German feeling for 200 years and the English Nobility felt good about the German Nobility many of whom who spoke good english unlike the french and several came to study in oxbridge on Rhodes scholarships.
German philosophers and musicians were highly admired in London, there was talk in 1895 and 1901 by Joseph Chamberlain of a Teutonic Alliance and all that.

On the whole, English neutrality would have made a German victory possible if not in 1914, certainly in 1915. In Fergusson's alternate history he claims a EU type formation. The British were certainly a major reason for the defeat of the CP(by Blockade) and the main reason for the entry of the USA.

On the other hand, Italians, Rumanians and Greeks were all side players.. perhaps the Rumanian entry actually helped as Rumanian wheat was captured by Mackensen's army and helped in the bad winter of 1916.

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Shri
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Sat Nov 09, 2013 9:58 am

Just one query-

Does anyone use the CONRAD plan (Historic) as AUSTRIA?
It was probably the most disastrous plan almost equal to Plan XVII, at least the French had British help, the Austrians had no help to remove themselves from their own soup; finally Falkenhyn had to weaken the western front and dig deep to find troops to help them.

This resulted in the first major gas usage(very successful usage too) on the western front (the French used gas first in amateurish & small quantity despite books heaping scorn on the blasted Germans who used it professionally and in massive doses) - Battle of Ypres not having enough reserves to succeed.
Austria never really recovered from the GALICIAN battles and died a long and slow death.

France recovered from its equally bad plan

On the other hand- Russia's immense manpower meant the loss of its 2 major armies on the north western front was not felt that badly, the annual recruitment drive more than made up for it.

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Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:32 pm

Somewhere on this Forum I uploaded a small mod that took away the optional war plans while keeping the options. It received a few downloads so at least some Players have experienced the Conrad Plan.

@ Shri: I read your formula for taking Paris against the AI in WW1G, it seems sound enough and is well described so an acknowledgement and a thanks are due. As a matter of course I tend to impose restrictions on how I play any war game and try so far as the game engine might allow, to utilize contemporary doctrines and limitations. So, for me using the big German cavalry corps in the manner that you advise is probably off the table.

(the French used gas first in amateurish & small quantity despite books heaping scorn on the blasted Germans who used it professionally and in massive doses)


This. However, chemical weapons would never provide a way to victory against any enemy who could respond in kind. When Dr. Fritz Haber advocated using toxic gas to the German General Staff as a more humane way of fighting than blasting human beings to pieces with high-explosives it ended up costing him (and hundreds of thousands of others) much. How many weapons considered by their developers as being "so terrible as to make war impossible" have there been?

-C

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Shri
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Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:56 am

@ Random

Thanks for the compliment!
But as i said in my post - it is gamey, i myself acknowledge it. . i just laid it out as some people said it could not be done in the game, i think it can be done with nearly 2/3rd accuracy.

Interesting mod, i don't think it is your naval mod (can you give me the link to it)- i downloaded the NAVAL and found it was very good indeed (esp. those stupid unrealistically strong German askaris locked)

@ Chemical weapons-
I am not in favor of chemist's weapons in WW1 or physicists weapons of WW2.. but just wanted to make the point that very few people remember it was the french who did it first so technically it was not a war crime - Indeed in war all that matters is victory as told in History, all war crimes of the victors are swept under the carpet (Greek invasion, Blockade, Gas etc) and all of the vanquished highlighted(Gas, Burning of Belgium, Unrestricted Sub Warfare, Bad treatment of POWs etc)

Haber paid a terrible personal price for his discovery but his other (Nitrates) saved a lot of people (food production).. similar to Noble compensating Dynamite with Prize maybe? Another irony of this story is, he like- Max Warburg, Walther Rathenau and other such high profile Germans were Jews (Von Linsingen and Liman Von Sanders were also Jews but followed the faith of the ARMY). This also showcases the Bismarckian Reich was quite inclusive.

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Random
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Sun Nov 10, 2013 5:47 pm

Interesting mod, i don't think it is your naval mod (can you give me the link to it)- i downloaded the NAVAL and found it was very good indeed (esp. those stupid unrealistically strong German askaris locked)

If the Mod you're talking about locked the German Colonial Corps, it's probably the one that I wrote:

WW1G-Grand-Campaign-Naval-Mod

I also wrote one to be compatible with John Scone's Generic Mod Enabler (JSGME) here:

Naval-Mods-and-Generic-Mod-Enabler

I wrote naval mods for the 1915 and 1916 scenarios but there are some errors in them and the evident lack of interest means no updates were done on them.

As for the German Askaris showing up in East Prussia, something that always really, really bothered me, they can still redeploy there and the AI will do it during redeployment phases. A fix for this can be found here:

Askaris-in-East-Prussia-A-Fix!

If you have found these mods stored anywhere else, chances are they're mine and they have been stolen since I only uploaded them here for the WW1G community.

With regards to war-ending weapons gone wrong I too had thought about Nobel but also Gatling, Maxim and Oppenheimer in a similar vein. No doubt there are a few more.

I seem to recall spending a comparatively significant amount of time during my Army career working in a chemical-weapons suit (the acronym of the day was TOPP-HIGH, probably that's changed several times to make it more PowerPoint friendly) and so have an appreciation for what chemical weapons can and cannot do do. Although dealing almost entirely with the Canadian Corps, if you're at all interested in the subject as it relates to WW1 see if you can find a fascinating book called No Place to Run by historian Tim Cook. In the Canadian Army we took chemical warfare very seriously, at least during the Cold War years; probably a legacy of the experience of 1st Division at Ypres in 1915.

-C

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Shri
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Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:56 am

@Random
Yes it is your naval mod with the askaris locked in africa.. very good one. I downloaded from this forum.

I was asking link for your "CONRAD PLAN" mod- is it there?

Haber, Nobel, Gatling, Maxim, Oppenheimer, Einstein, Kalashnikov?? (he gave an interview on BBC after fall of SU saying- he would be happy if he had built a lawn mover)

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Random
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Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:35 pm

I was asking link for your "CONRAD PLAN" mod- is it there?


A WW1G Mod to restrict all Players to historical War Plans only:

Historical War Plans Only

-C

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Shri
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Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:30 am

@Random

Thanks.
I Installed it alongwith the Naval Improvements and locking of Askaris by you it is great.

But- How do you make Austria succeed in this suicidal plan?
Any tips/tricks?

The Austrians have average troops, bad generals and low quantity no way you can successfully attack Russia.
Even the Germans with excellent troops, above average/good generals and decent quantity struggled to finish off the Russians.

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Thu Nov 14, 2013 11:32 pm

Thanks for the kind words regarding the mods.

But- How do you make Austria succeed in this suicidal plan?

You can't because they can't because it is... suicidal.

As I recall the view of von Moltke the Elder applies here, to the effect that: "Any mistakes in the initial mobilization may only be made good in the next war." It's really difficult to see how Conrad, so often passed off as some sort of strategic genius, could have made Austria-Hungary's situation worse than he did.

-CC

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Shri
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Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:04 pm

Random wrote:
You can't because they can't because it is... suicidal.

As I recall the view of von Moltke the Elder applies here, to the effect that: "Any mistakes in the initial mobilization may only be made good in the next war." It's really difficult to see how Conrad, so often passed off as some sort of strategic genius, could have made Austria-Hungary's situation worse than he did.

-CC


:( :(

I hoped an old pro like yourself could offer me some tips, on the murky situation.

CONRAD was an absolute disaster, his plans were totally unrealistic esp. that "SIEDLICE Manoeuvrings"; in his own words- "Franz Ferdinand would have shot me!" (After the Battle of "Rawa Ruska"). - this may be an overstatement but it is right. Having said that, most of those Austrian FieldMarshalls were fit to be dispatch runners (not that they could run) in the German Army so out of a bad lot he was picked due to him being a good trainer. Same can be said for the Russian Generals also. Or the Italians, Rumanians, Turks (barring their German Commanders and Mustafa Kemal).

The best or only bet for Austria was something like- EUGENE plan (in game, in real too there was a plan for mobilising against russia in strength) .

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Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:09 am

I roleplay what-if scenarios.

My favourite is CP with Moltke/Kaiser/Diplo Poker, i.e. a full "Russia First" option. I'd like to imagine that Italy could be tempted with the promises of the restoration of Nice and Savoy, perhaps even Corsica (which used to be Genose once upon a time, after all) and a bunch of French colonies, notably Tunisia. I would still like this option to have a smaller chance to succeed, at least if the "cede Trentino" option is not chosen by the Austrian player (With all its disadvantages).

In this choice I always pick "Ultimatum Accepted" as well, as an extra role-playing reason to make the Diplo Poker option more plausible. After all, one of Italy's excuses for not joining on the side of its nominal allies was that this was an offensive war. I'd like to imagine that if Austria accepted Serbia's response to its ultimatum (by some hypothetical German pressure, as per the Diplomatic Poker counterfactual hypothesis) and Russia still precipitated a war (as the Diplo Poker option states) it would have been easier for Italy to throw its lot with the CPs, for the suitable territorial promises of course.

Continuing the roleplay, I pick Accrued Mobilisation for Germany since it's now waiting for the alliance system to play out and it's plausible to say that it can form some Ersatz Divisions while it's waiting. I also pick Volunteers and Munitions for Austria, with the roleplaying excuse that Russia's aggressive precipitation of the war (under Diplo Poker) would cause even more indignation in the public in the Empire and lead to more volunteers, perhaps from the disillusioned-with-Russian-aggressiveness Slavic populations.

I even roleplay my diplomatic strategy. I send a diplomat to Britain for every turn it stays out, but never run a mission, since I want them to come in to make things interesting. But not sending anyone to the biggest power in the world is silly. I focus in getting Turkey and Bulgaria in to gang up on Serbia and Russia from new fronts, although I have experimented with getting Romania on my side first with the justification that it did have an old treaty with Austria.

If I opt to go West, then I pick the historical plans. There's no plausible counterfactual to Schlieffen for me other than a "go East" version. I imagine it that Moltke accepted the Kaiser's raptuous explosion that "now we can just fight Russia" of July 31 and moved three armies East.

As the Entente again things are simple. French options are all bad, so I pick Plan 17, take my lumps and regroup. As Russia, I just blast Austria

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Shri
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Mon Nov 18, 2013 7:39 am

@paul

If you go alternate universe- Luigi Cadorna was pro-German but anti- Austrian so there were chances of retaining Italy.
Rumania, Bulgaria, Greece (for that matter the whole of Europe except Serbia and the Republican states- France & Switzerland) had German Princes as Kings who were all closely related to the KAISER or to the other Royal Families of Germany/Austria so one/all could have allied with CP.

If you are going alternate- KOENIG plan (all out against Serbia) is a good one or EUGENE (defend against Russia) is good too.

As Germany- Schlieffen is my favorite (though this plan itself has been proved to be only a tactical exercise/memorandum and not a real one), MOLTKE is a good plan (similar to WALDERSEE plan in 1897).

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