This is an AAR from a recent Global game with Larry’s new Alpha +1 setup. Made a few notes during play.
Turn 1: the game started well enough for the Axis powers. Germany cleared out four of the five British fleets (all except sz110) and amazingly lost just a submarine doing so. A few transports and a carrier were built to start preparing for Sea Lion.
Russia just buys and moves stuff around, while Japan advances against China and repositions itself for a possible strike on turn 2. The British move their remaining fleet into the med and kill off the western Italian fleet, that rolled abysmally and couldn’t even be saved by scrambling. Italy moved its African forces to pincer Egypt from the west and south. USA just builds three capital ships for the Pacific (2 carriers and a battleship). China keeps the Burma Road open and France is left with very little.
Turn 2: Germany buys a few extra trannies and a couple of land units. Russian again buys and moves stuff around. Japan launches its assault on all things allies and takes Phillipines and 2 out of 4 from the East Indies. Also, Hong Kong falls, FIC and further progress in China. UK makes a devastating counter against Italian units in Africa and destroys them all but two (one in Libya and one in Kenya), ANZAC planes move towards India and Italy reels from the blows it has gotten. USA builds more Pacific stuff (loaded carrier) and a couple of destroyers for the Atlantic. China holds on having been reduced to 5 territories.
Turn 3: Germany launches Sea Lion and could this be a pyrrhic victory? Germany takes Britain with 1 tank left, having sacrificed half the Luftwaffe. There is quite a bit of stuff on the Russian border too but Western Europe is all but empty but for a lone Italian artillery in Southern France. Russia again buys and moves stuff around (now has 2 semi decent stacks in Western Ukraine and Belarus). Japan takes full control of the East Indies but fails to advance in China (dice). Japanese fleet is in two fleet stacks, one near Japan and one at Malaysia. UK keeps building stacks of units for the Pacific (house rule ‘British Empire’ allows UK to shift IPC’s in Asia and the Middle East to UK Pacific. UK units encircle last remaining Axis units in Africa. UK fleet is destroyed by Germany and Italy and Italian remaining fleet also doesn’t survive this turn. US fleet at Hawaii takes on decent proportions, certainly now when the USA is able to collect full IPCs thanks to Japans aggressive warmongering. China clings on to life at Yunnan, helped by the British empire and the disproportional ground losses by Japan in China.
Turn 4: Germany enters the Soviet Union on non-friendly terms and decides to stack most in Baltic States, also taking West Poland to prevent any units from Western Ukraine from counter attacking. Russia moves stack to Novgorod to defend Leningrad (German transports are out of position) and makes semi successful counterattack at East Poland. Meanwhile, 12 infantry from the east are coming towards Moscow. Japan collects 68 IPCs but some of those are under threat. UK continues to prop up China in Yunnan. USA builds more fleet for the Pacific and the occasional transport with units and surface fleet for protection for the Atlantic to start building up a threat to Italy at Gibraltar (having rid the Atlantic of German subs) and also to try and retake Britain. China manages to recover a bit of land, ominous tidings for Japan.
Turn 5: Germany reinforces the Baltic States, takes quite a few territories and is set to launch an attack on Novgorod next turn. Russia is not yielding it just yet. Japan is frustrated now having to spend lots of IPCs propping up the sz6 fleet and also repatriating some planes to help defend Japan in a possible attack by the USA. UK has secured Iraq (thus being able to shift it and Transjordan to UK Pacific under the house rule ‘British empire’ along with Persia) and Poland still cannot into space. The USA reinforces the Hawaii fleet even further and sends out a few subs west towards Japanese convoy zones. China recovers more territory with UK’s aid, the ground war in China being lost by Japan despite two minor factories churning out infantry and mobile units (dice consistently favor China).
Turn 6 assault on Novgorod by Germany succeeds (heavy losses though) and builds a few units in London and Paris to protect against possible US attempts to liberate UK and Normandy. Russia is rebuilding its stack just west of Moscow (no threat to the south west Soviet Union allows Russia to focus). Japan decides to gamble and attacks the US Pacific fleet, destroying it and taking Hawaii in the process. However, Japans force is reduced to just a damaged battleship and the bomber that lands elsewhere. Japans other fleet continues to be harassed by UK Pacific and ANZAC who make suicidal attacks to whittle it down. Italy churns out a tank and a mech inf per turn for the eastern front and US retakes Hawaii and also Alaska that got taken by a diverted Japanese transport landing two infantry. China makes further progress and is up to 16 IPC.
Turn 7 Germany is rushing mobile units to the eastern front for a future operation Typhoon, Russia keeps building its defensive forces up, now also about to be reinforced from the east. Japan is further on the defensive against UK and ANZAC, UK landing on Sumatra. Rebuilding the fleet is not easy for Japan which also has to feed land units to China and replenish its airforce. Italian forces go nowhere in Russia and USA lands in force on UK and liberates it and a destroyer west of the Danish strait blocks a possible counter by the Germans next turn. Subs enter the Mediterranean heading for convoy zones. The tide is turning against the Axis. USA has already assembled a new Pacific fleet much to Japans dismay.
Turn 8 Germany moves mass units to Belorussia and Russia moves its forces to Smolensk to confront them. Japan is losing further ground in the South Pacific however manages to land 6 land units on Queensland to destroy four American planes there. The Allies had not expected the remnants of the Japanese south Pacific Fleet to attempt this. This fleet and remaining land units get destroyed, though. The USA lands on all four Atlantik Wall territories at the same time.
Turn 9 the decisive battle in front of Moscow, Germany has an advantage with a few more units and more ‘pips’ but an atrocious first round roll lets Russia in and in the end Germany ends with one tank and four bombers against 5 Russian tanks. Germany retreats and immediately is counterattacked by the Russians for the destruction of all axis units in non Soviet-German border territories (the small force in Ukraine was enough to do the job in the southwest). Japan is crumbling under the blows of UK Pacific, ANZAC, China and USA.
And at this point, the axis powers surrender. The conclusion is that for this Alpha+1 game I think the setup is pretty well balanced, all key battles went against the axis dice-wise (not the first time, my dice do not seem to be axis friendly), and even when they won them suffered so many casualties that could in the end not be replaced. The British Empire rule (UK Europe is allowed to shift the IPCs from territories in one continuous UK controlled line from West India to Transjordan to UK Pacific) made no decisive difference. A more full British Empire rule (replacement capital for UK Europe in Canada or South Africa) is not recommended.
The scramble rule certainly helps the UK in turn 1, though not too much. And it makes the UK Taranto raid a little more dicey (unless Germany supplies extra fighters in which case it is extremely risky). There were no attempts at strategic bombing. The NOs mostly made more sense, particularly on the Soviet-Japanese border. But still, NO’s for the recapture of Paris and the capture of Berlin seem superfluous. I’d create an NO for both sides for control of the Middle East (whoever has control of Iraq, Persia, Transjordan and Syria gets 5 IPCs). Some sort of British Empire rule (in the game I applied a variant) seems called for though it shouldn’t be too strong and not allow UK Europe to collect cash without control of London). Maybe a rule that allows the British Empire to shovel cash around with limits when in control of any three of five capitals (Ottawa, London, Johannesburg, Calcutta and Sydney) or all four if not London.