A counter to Kaufstick’s plan?
My group has been working on various things to see if there’s a good counter to the Malayan factory. We think we’ve come up with a few tactics that seem to work pretty well. Well enough that the Allies might just have a chance. Of course, there’s probably some slight tweaking that will wreck this whole thing like the India Crush move, but the American tactics seem to work no matter what is happening on the West side of the board.
1) Abandon India. It’s going to go down anyway, right? Hit Japan where it hurts, land units. When China retakes Yunnan, Britain can move 1inf from Burma, and land their 4FTR and 1Tac there as well. Combined with the 4 Chinese Inf reinforcements and whatever was left from taking back Yunnan, and there is a stack of 7-9INF, 4FTR, 1TAC.
The problem for Japan then becomes whether or not to attack the stack. They will only have 2INF that can attack and all their planes, so if they attack on J2, they will lose a lot of their stacked airforce. If they ignore it, that stack moves into China and begins to retake it.
When Japan takes India and has a Malayan factory, the stack is well away from them by that point, making it harder to finally stop them. It’s an ever-growing stack of Chinese infantry defended by UK planes. And all they need is to hold Kweichow, and US FTRs from Guam can join the fight.
The Chinese/UK stack as akin to a cancerous lump in the Japanese controlled mainland. Chemo costs planes, but to ignore them may be death as well. The Chinese stack grows very quickly in the beginning, much faster than any Japanese land units can be put into the interior.
The upside for the Allies is that if Japan does attack on J2, it really slows down their Indian offensive, making them completely dependent on the Malayan factory with little chance of taking India before J5 or J6. If they let the stack go, they won’t have China under complete control for even longer.
The one flaw I see that we have yet to try is the India crush where Japan loses planes on J1 to put more land units in Yunnan. If China can’t take it back on C1, then UK can’t reinforce with planes and the strategy is defeated.
America strategy to follow.
What’s worked for America. It’s more than a cat and mouse game; it’s simple avoidance. The strategic advantage for Japan is all of the little islands they can land on. If America moves to Wake Island, than Fighters from Truk can attack them and land on the Marshall Islands. The list is quite large. To that end, America needs to take the undefended and monetarily worthless islands if they are to make progress.
On US2, the consolidated Hawaiian fleet moves to Wake, combining with the US1 purchase which can also make it there. They send a lone transport with a land unit to take the Marshall Islands. With that simple move, both the Japanese and Truk air forces can’t reach the US fleet. They’ll lose a transport, but nothing else. Plus, the land unit-strapped Japanese have no transports to spare, as the J1 buy of 3 TT are all going towards India.
Also on US2, America might purchase a naval base for Wake, threatening more unprotected islands. The goal is to sacrifice transports to take islands, islands that prevent a concentrated Japanese counter-assault. By themselves, the Japanese airforces on Japan or Truk aren’t enough to go on the offense against a concentrated US fleet.
The US repeats the process until they reach either the Chinese mainland, or a DEI. Japan doesn’t have the resources on the first few turns to buy sacrificial transports and land units to retake the islands, so the US sees some gains in the first few turns. It’s worked well on the first couple of games as the Japanese player hadn’t encountered it before.
To help facilitate, the ANZAC player saves money and may be required to put a naval base on New Guinea, New Britain, or the Solomons.
We’re going to try again, but with the Japanese well-aware of what the US is going to try.