R. Ben Madison  - Apr 2, 2006 2:42 pm (#523 Total: 525)  
Death in the Trenches -- WWI in a bag! See 
British Empire Collapses -- Allies Sue for Peace!

Our latest game of DITT came to a crashing halt in the winter of 1916
when the British Empire collapsed and the Turks were virtually assured
victory in the Near East Theatre. Here's the AAR: 

# ***************** 

AUGUST 1914: The Germans have hardly crossed into Belgian territory when
the Boers rise up against British rule in an 8-strength revolt. The CP
assault in the West begins with a massive assault on the French 5th Army
in the Ardennes region; Germans inflict 93,000 dead, vaporizing 5th
Army. But as the Germans advance into the Meuse Valley, they roll 39
dice on 155 strength points -- and overroll by 4. The French line holds!
BEF arrives to bolster the Belgians, who still hold Brussels; Germans
hurl another two armies at the Meuse Valley and, this time, flawlessly
destroy the French defenders there at minimal cost ("only" 63,000 dead).
But the French, at a cost of 49,000 dead, hurl the Germans back out of
the Meuse Valley, using Paris Taxis and Offensive a l'Outrance. Germans
reinforce Coblenz to ward off a future British attack. In the East, the
Russian assault on Austria-Hungary begins very well, with the
destruction of Austria's 7th Army at Czernowitz. Austrians reinforce the
Carpathian gap at Koloszvar, while the Russians assault Lemberg and just
barely fail to capture its fort. Belgrade falls to a rapid Austrian
assault. Togo, Kaiser Wilhelms Land and Samoa fall to Entente forces
(the French lose a Div in the fight for Togo!) while the Boer Revolt
spreads across South Africa. The outraged Americans leap 6 levels
towards entry while Japan joins the Allies. 

SEPTEMBER 1914: The Royal Flying Corps arrives on the Western Front just
in time. British refuse Home Rule for Ireland. Russians lurch 5 points
towards Revolution as "The Internationale" plays on our stereo. The
Gurkhas arrive in France. Rather than rise another dangerous salient,
the Germans decide to kick the Brits out of Belgium and widen the front.
In a huge assault on Brussels, the Boche achieve a smathing victory that
drives out the British 1st Army, the Belgians, the Gurkhas, and knocks
out the Brussels fort. The Russians respond by launching assaults on
Austrian positions in the Carpathians, hoping to force the Germans to
divert forces east. Russians advance through the Carpathians to Ungvar,
but Austria's 5th Army retreats in good order. Japanese troops conquer
Tsingtao while the South African Army ineffectually takes on the Boer
revolters. The Australians are now on their way to South Africa.
Crushing Serb defeat at Zayechar, south of Belgrade. Russians enter East
Prussia at Stalluponen, but launch no attacks. Germans respond with
overwhelming force, 8th Army inflicting a large but not crippling
victory on the Russkies there. Russians besiege Lemberg; Austrians are
too weak to raise the siege, but Lemberg holds out. 

FALL, 1914: Putnik is arrested in his Austrian spa, spelling doom and
disaster for Servia. Turks limp towards entry; they won't join in 1914.
German offensive in French Flanders succeeds; now only Ypres remains
"free" as Belgian territory. British reinforce Ypres. Crushing Austrian
triumph at Nish: Servian state is on verge of collapse! Russians try to
put pressure on Austria by assaulting Lemberg again, but the lucky
Austrians prevail -- Lemberg's fortress holds out. Serbs surrender at
Uskub and Austrian forces occupy Salonika without a fight. Anzac troops
finally suppress the Boer Revolt after three months of civil war in
South Africa. Russians plot numerous options to seize Transylvania and
force Roumania to join the war, jut they just aren't strong enough yet
to drive out the Austro-German forces facing them in the Carpathians.
But they probe north into Ungvar; German forces reinforce the line at
Miskolc while the Russians push into Herrmannstadt, in Transylvania,
cutting off Kronstadt from the rest of the Austro-Hungarian Empire! The
Austrians push 8th Army out of Transylvania but have no forces to occupy
the extended front; More Russians pour in, and the trapped Austrian 5th
Army at Kronstadt attempts a breakout: it fails. Germans play a
Reichsbahn chit and rails 3rd Army from Metz to Kronstadt -- Russians
retreat, Kronstadt is saved! Germans hurl the rest of their Krupp
artillery at the French in the Meuse Valley and with 158 strength
points, roll 158 on 39 dice! French retreat in disgrace. But yet again,
the French counterattack and retake the hex. British, Anzac and Indian
forces take Kondoa Irangi, the first outpost in German East Africa to
fall (German defenders overroll). Mussolini rouses the rabble in Italy,
pushing Italian entry to 64. Roumanians and USA also gung ho for the EP
cause; Bulgarians not thrilled with the CP despite their 'fair and
balanced' propaganda offensive. 


R. Ben Madison - Apr 2, 2006 3:06 pm (#524 Total: 525)  
Death in the Trenches -- WWI in a bag! See 

DITT AAR, continued

WINTER 1915: Command of the skies passes to the Germans thanks to the
Immelmann Turn. Italians fall just one point short of entry. US Entry up
to 44 already. With Austrian forces redeploying to the Alpine front, the
Russians launch a giant assault on Lemberg and capture the fort.
Austrians reinforce Przemysl, but the Russians launch a daring, risky,
low-odds attack and with few hits to spare, capture that fort as well.
Germans rail troops into Cracow to prevent a complete Russian
breakthrough. But the French respond with an assault on lightly-defended
Strasbourg, and capture the city! Germans freak, abandon East Prussia,
and in the resulting battle to retake Strasbourg, both sides overroll.
Russians and Finns capture Konigsberg. Germans play Rennenkampf to keep
Tannenberg from falling; both sides pass and this bizarre turn ends.
Persia keeps the bizarreness alive by suddenly declaring war on the EP.
Tanga falls to the EP. 

SPRING, 1915: Italy declares war on Austria-Hungary. Keetmanshoop (SWA)
falls to Allied troops. Austria cements its hold on the Balkans by
driving the Italians out of Albania. Germans reconquer Strasbourg. Huge
Anglo-French offensive in Flanders called off at the last minute; they
just aren't strong enough yet. (Like that ever stopped a WWI general.)
Kronstadt falls to Russians -- Roumania joins the war. Germans retake
Przemysl. Italians begin hostilities by assaulting the Isonzo Valley
and, just barely, fail to take it. Tommies push the Senussi out of
Jaraboob, but are routed at Tobruch; British troops at Jaraboob are cut
off! Italians succeed in resupplying them. Grand Austrian offensive in
the Trentino is a failure. 

SUMMER 1915: Turkey finally joins the Central Powers. Anzacs take
Daressalam at heavy cost; tropical disease slows advance in SW Africa,
while manpower shortage keeps the Armenian Front inactive this summer.
Germans retake Konigsberg but Plehve retreats his Russian forces in good
order. Russians enter the Turkish Empire, winning an easy victory at the
Baouk-Dere River near the Black Sea. French take Duala (Cameroon).
French offensive with British and Belgian help in French Flanders is a
fiasco; both sides roll abysmally. Germans push Russians out of East
Prussia. Russo-Roumanian offensive just barely fails to rout Krauts at
Hermannstadt; second Russian drive overrolls. Italian forces break
through on the Isonzo -- Austrians in headlong retreat! But Austria
responds with a great offensive on the Trentino, breaking through the
Italian lines and seizing Verona. German offensive stalls at Kovno.
German Engineers deploy in Turkey, setting the stage for Turkish
invasion of Egypt. Canadians arrive on the Western Front, and Bulgaria
joins the Central Powers. 

FALL 1915: US Entry up to 54. EP forces advance in the colonies with
light losses: Garua falls to French while Luderitz and Neu-Langenburg
fall to Anzacs. British player decides to clean up in the colonies and
do a holding action in Egypt. But the Senussi forces, at peak strength,
push hard at the Siwa Oasis while the Turks launch a simultaneous, bold
strike across the Sinai Peninsula. Entrenched British forces hold firm
at Cairo, while British and Italian forces evade an attempted Senussi
trap, falling back towards Benghazi and setting up a line at Mersa
Matruh to keep the Senussi away from the Cairo/Alexandria area. A host
of inconclusive battles between the Russians and Turks at Nakhichevan,
Malazgirt, Erzurum (still held by rebellious Armenians) and Trebizond.
Sarrail flips the Russo-Roumanian force in Targu Jiu, Roumania;
Bulgarians launch full-scale invasion into southern Roumania, take
Bucharest! Austrian forces concentrate their fire on Venice but the
invasion is beaten back; Italy survives and the rest of the EP can now
freely deploy their forces into Italy. Russo-German death-grip at
Hermannstadt continues with no resolution. Germans retake the Carpathian
passes at Czernowitz; the huge Russian army group in Transylvania is now
supplied through Roumania. With Ben's wife rolling the dice, Montenegro
is crushed by the Austrians. In Mesopotamia, British and Indian forces
advance north to Kut-al-Amara but Turkey's XIII Corps holds the line
there. Incompetent Turkish administrators sent to massacre the Armenians
fail to massacre anybody. 

WINTER 1916: Nobody expected this to be the last turn of the game! The
Turkish fleet sorties and, in a desperate attack, pulverizes the poor
Russians! The Black Sea is now under complete Turkish control. The Arab
Revolt breaks out, and Arab forces advance as far as Aqaba. But while
Turkish troops form a line north of Aqaba, the bulk of the Turkish Army
surges into Egypt and conquers Cairo, using up most of the Kemal chits
to do so. British troops reinforce Alexandria while the Senussi front
collapses; Senussi irregulars advance to El Alamein but are thrown back
from the gates of Alexandria. But the Turks, using the last Kemal chit,
assault Alexandria from the east, and conquer the city! The British hold
on Egypt collapses, and we pre-roll the British surrender roll: it's a
6. The British Empire will leave the war at the end of this turn. The
Russians throw up their hands -- Turkey is "unstoppable" at this point
and France can't possibly hold without British support. The Russian
Revolution Marker surges up by +10; the Triple Entente sues for peace,
ending the First World War. 

# ******** 

For the world situation at the end of the game, see here: