Like Russia, Germany needs help from its allies to win, but unlike the Allies, it is not easy for Japan to ship troops to Europe, so other then possible fighter support the real help Germany receives is when Japan can mount pressure on Moscow. So how long does this take? Realistically probably about 4 rounds before Japan can really make Russia notice them. So what does this mean for Germany? It means you don’t have to rush to Moscow or overextend yourself early, but you do have to make gains in Europe and Afr and solidify your position so that as Japan is pressuring Moscow you can pressure them as well. While it is possible for one of the Axis to take out Moscow, it is nice to be able to provide the 1-2 punch just in case.
So how does Germany build up early on and what do they need to do?
First, I’m going to make a couple of assumptions:
1) Any bid units are placed in Libya
2) Russia has attacked Wrus and Belo or Ukr
Also, I’m only going to focus on German land purchases for G1. There are viable strategies for German naval purchases but I think it is better to first get a feel for what is going on in Europe before spending resources on ships.
Okay, now back to what Germany needs to do. After Russia’s turn and before your purchases, you need to survey the board and plan out your attacks. You must do this because you want to make sure that what you buy compliments your strategy. Don’t just buy things and then work around it, I guess that is true for all countries, but Germany in particular since they are the most likely target of the Allies and you can’t afford any misteps.
After surveying the board you are going to see Wrus in Russian hands and most likely either Belo or Ukr as well. Wrus is a lost cause at the start so you can probably write off any counter early and not really consider it. Only in rare cases may there be an opening but since we are talking about the basics I think we can leave the rare cases for another day.
Belo or Ukr on the other hand can be countered, but before we get to those potential battles lets look at Germany’s “must attacks”, “should attacks”, and “would like to attack if I had the resources”.
I think the “must attacks” are the UK BB in Sz 13, Egy, Kar (since it is fairly easy for the Nor troops to attack), and the Ukr counter (if attacked by Rus). I’d classify the UK DD in Sz 15 and the counter of Belo as “should attacks”. And in the “if you have the resources” you might want to take a shot at the UK trn off the coast of Canada.
You can all but rule out attacking the UK fleet in Sz 2, it just isn’t worth the risk IMO. Perhaps if you go with a German Naval strategy, but that is another paper.
You should have no trouble finding the resources to hit the BB, the DD, Kar, and Egy. I will send:
1 sub, 4 ftrs to Sz 13
1 trn, 1 bb, 1 ftr to Sz 15
Lib troops + SE troops + bom to Egy
Nor inf to Kar (although if it is empty just send 1 inf since you can non-com 2 others to WE or EE)
Now with a sufficient bid in Lib you can go after the E Can trn with a sub, and use your BB and trn to help take out the UK BB as well as take Gib. While you Lib troops and bid take out Egy. That also could free up a ftr or 2 for another attack.
I prefer to go to Egy heavy though to make sure I kill that UK ftr and seal off the canal.
Now what do you do about Belo or Ukr?
In the case of Belo you can usually pull a ftr from Ukr and take it back with 2-3 inf, 1 ftr, if you want to go that route. You can also pull a ftr from Sz 13 or Sz 15 if you need another ftr somewhere else.
In the case of Ukr, you may need to commit an armor. If Russia only has 1 tank left you may be able to get away with 2-3 inf plus a ftr, but if they take with 3-4 units you are going to have to go after it some what heavily like 4 inf, 2 arm.
It is in this case you may want to check the feasibility of sending ALL available ground units into Ukr. You have to see what Russia can counter with but if they moved some troops East and maybe didn’t buy more tanks, you may have an opportunity to take back Ukr and hold it. Also, with a strong Lib bid it may free up your trn and BB to help out and help you reinforce Ukr. (This is also why you need to plan your attacks prior to commiting to your purchases, since a move like this requires more tanks to be bought)
But for the sake of this article and keeping things basic, lets assume it is either not safe to attack and stack Ukr or you are just not comfortable with the move. However you will be able to counter Russia with 3-4 inf, 1 arm (or use a ftr from Sz 13 or 15, maybe use your bom, etc.)
So what do you buy so you can do your combat moves and make this all happen?
Since you are not planning on blitzing to Mos and you’d like to wait until Japan is a threat to Mos you are safe to buy a good supply of infantry with a mix of rt or arm. This way you can build up your defenses and as you move the infantry to the front lines then you can buy your armor as it get closer to attack time. I think any one of these buys is good for a land based strat:
12 inf, 1 rt
10 inf, 2 arm
7 inf, 1 rt, 3 arm
8 inf, 4 rt
10 inf, 1 ftr
Really Germany has loads of options, but with a good supply of inf you can also maintain the needed threat on Afr (as long as your trn is above water) and continue to keep your IPCs up to fund your expansion and eventual move that should come around at about ~Rd 4.
Now that you’ve planned out your combats and made you purchases accordingly how are things going to look after combat?
If you attacked Sz 13, Sz 15/Egy, Kar, and countered Belo/Ukr, you should clear Sz 13 with only the loss of your sub, cleared Sz 15 without any losses (due to 2 hit BB), taken Egy with about 4 land units left (if you bid 2 units to Lib), taken Kar with 1-2 units, and recalimed Belo/Ukr with 1-3 units left.
Now during Non-Combat you want to start to fortify Europe in preperation for your mid-game offensive. I like to move all available arm to EE to maintain the threat on Ukr preventing an Allied move, land 4 ftrs in WE with an extra inf moved there while the rest of the German inf go to EE and any SE units left can move to Balk. Land your bom and other ftr in Lib (or SE) while moving the inf and art from Alg to Lib.
You can now place 10 units in Ger with the remainder in SE. Just make sure you have 2 units available for transport on G2.
So if you bought 10 inf, 2 arm your likely to end up with something like this after G1
Kar: 1-2 inf
Belo: 1-2 inf (if you had to counter), 1 inf (if Rus attacked Ukr)
Ukr: 1-2 inf, 1 arm (if you had to counter), 1 inf (if Rus attacked Belo)
EE: ~5-7 inf, 5-6 arm (possibly 1 rt pending Russia’s attacks)
Balk: 1 inf, 1 rt
WE: ~3 inf, 4 ftrs, aa
Ger: 9 inf, 1 arm
SE: 1 inf, 1 arm, 1 ftr
Lib: 1 inf, 1 rt, 1 bom
Egy: ~2 inf, 2 arm
(one more possible ftr pending Russia’s attack)
You now have a solid defense starting to form while being able to maintain trading in Europe, a threat on Ukr, and the ability to reinforce Afr.
You’ll want to continue to send 1-2 inf to WE as the Allies build up with the rest of the troops going to EE. You can also continue to send 2 units to Egy/Trj, but I would stop once you control both Egy and Trj and then I’d consider getting my BB and trn out of the Med before the Allies sink them.