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This page provides strategic advice for effectively using the supply system. To understand the workings of supply centers, supply networks, supply throughput, etc., visit the Logistics reference article.
- If you are on the offensive and you start to see units out of fuel, slow down the pace of the offensive. This includes not advancing units, holding off attacks, and decreasing airforce/navy usage.
- If your encirclement is going slow (past the 15-day reserve), be very careful about the supply lines, which now run along the front. Lost provinces and infrastructure damage from battles will be very bad for the forward units, so try hard not to let that happen.
- If your front stops, check to see if it's because of supply problems before sending more divisions. If supply is the issue, adding more units will create a local collapse, and you really don't want that to happen.
- Weather: If you try an offensive in Asia in the midst of the monsoon, you will have supply problems. Regardless of tech and infra. Also storms and really hot or cold weather is not good for your supply situation. If you are having problems with supply, 99% of the time the culprit is overstacking of units in weather/mud/snow, so if your units are out of supply make sure to check the weather map.
- Supply centers: should be surrounded by friendly territories. Although bypassing large swaths of empty enemy territory makes for a quicker advance, the fewer the territories you have, the less throughput you have. Additionally, having more territories makes logistical bombing harder, as the supply system has more avenues to use when infrastructure is damaged.
- Convoys: take it off auto create and destroy to improve efficiency for exactly where supply is needed.
- Ports: Expansionist players should build ports even when they may not be needed, and then deploy prebuilt ones when new territory is captured.
- Mind the infrastructure when attacking enemy territory: switch to pure infantry and drop artillery brigades from divisions. Pure mountain divisions are perfect for bad terrain especially when armor is not expected. Asia is a prime example.
- For long term occupation you may want to upgrade provinces with poor infrastructure. It is pretty cheap, and doesn’t cost manpower. Once land becomes annexed however throughput doubles and revoltrisk drops.
- Transport planes: Have some handy, they are great for spot issues that need to be dealt with. However they are expensive IC wise. They are great if there are supply hiccups, just be sure they are also in supply.
- Partisans: Will pop up no matter how well you suppress your land - create fast moving, low supply consumption units (AC, Cav) to take care of them. No supplies pass through territory occupied by partisans. See Partisans and Revolts
- Supply tax: Each time supply moves from one province to another a supply cost is accrued. In occupied land(land with occupation policies applying) the transfer cost for supplies moving between provinces is affected dramatically by revolt risk. When the province transfer has revoltrisk in it, an additional amount is added to that transfer cost. Occupied revolt risk can cascade into overwhelming values if left unchecked, crippling supply and resource/ic province values. Occupied land due to a low ceiling(throughput) and the higher risk to supply tax increases, is the land you should focus on suppressing. Focus on your lowest throughput sections first as the chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Deploying single MP brigades along supply lines improves your throughput dramatically. This strategy is only necessary when the land is occupied. Annexed land has higher throughput and the revolt risk in annexed land is fixed and small. An example of annexed land would be land that has nationalism as its revolt risk instead of partisan support i.e. Land earned from a nation which was conquered without setting up a GIE (Government in Exile). In TFH, suppression was changed so it affected both occupied and annexed territories.
- Allies: Use ally’s supply network to relieve bottlenecks in your own network. Base your aircraft and Navy on allied territory. Note that your allies will get from your stockpile equal to the supplies your troops consume. Keep in mind, however, that your allies supply network may start to develop problems as well.
- Technology: Research the supply techs to the maximum amount. Basing technology as well.
- Supply network: Avoid overstacking a province. Putting too many units into one territory can cause supply to be consumed faster than it can be supplied.
- Leaders: Set up the command hierarchy and put your highest skilled leader at the Army Group level. Then use Logistic Wizards in the Army and Corps HQ as much as possible. This will save on supplies.
- Strategic Deployment:
- Units under strategic deployment will bring their full supply reserves with them, which can be useful when deploying to areas without supplies.
- Strategic redeployment costs two times the divisional supply need, though it requires no fuel, so use it wisely. They will not have fuel when they arrive and will have to wait for fuel to catch up.
- Collaboration: In occcupied territories, change to a collaborative government. This reduces the partisan activity, thereby decreasing the loss of supplies as they go through those territories. The downside is that you not be getting any IC production from those territories.
- Destroying their Supply:
One way to quickly defeat an enemy is to destroy his supply. This can be used to hold back the hordes or to quicken your spearheading attacks. Many times getting a break through or cutting off the enemy is not the problem. Its the days and days your herded enemy can keep up the fight that saps you of available units and manpower hits. Below is what is needed and what to do.
- What you need to employ this strategy:
- A good deal of supply planes (at least six), you will run out of supply at some point no matter how careful you are so they are needed anyway and are what you will need to defend against this type of strategy if used against you.
- You will need at least three tactical or strategic planes. Since most countries start with at least one type of these planes you should be set with no need to produce more for initial small and medium scale conflicts.
- At least six interceptor planes to protect your other planes.
- How to implement it:
- Your strategic or Tactical planes will be used for Logistical bombing runs. Yes this destroys infrastructure, but your supply planes will nulify any issues you have with this. This should be surgical when attacking. And scorched earth when you are being overwhelmed.
- Make sure your planes are protected, and don't worry to much about over stacking just try and keep it to no more than ten of your own planes in one provence.
- Your goal is to entrap the enemy or push him through a bottleneck then logistically close it off. A good example is a fully fortified province will fall if you destroy it's supply and wait it out some with a single attacking division. Units out of supply can not enter enemy territory, so your troops will not be attacked. Troops with no organization will retreat, and if entrapped will blow away like the wind.
- Once trapped to your liking, it can be as large an area as four to six provinces, but should be minimized as much as possible. Start doing logistical bombing runs. This will destroy your enemy's supply and being cut off will ensure he is not re-supplied.
- Another option is the defensive gauntlet. Enemies usually invade by a breach in the line and then flood through that breach. If you destroy that provences infrastructure to zero and don't allow the line to desentigrate the enemy will quickly run out of supply.
- If the enemy is seriously running you over like what was happening to Russia when Germany originally attacked. You can try and drop the infrastructure of all border provinces. A scortched earth tactic. Without strong air supply support any offensive is going to be greatly slowed. And yes, taking that territory back is going to be a very slow process.
- Last another option is with air support your supply planes can ensure behind the lines units, cut-off units, etc. are kept in good supply to continue the fight.
For more informationa and documents, see Logistics reference