Entering the War



  • Why is it that the USA and the USSR can choose to enter the war fairly early in the game?  In reality both of them entered the war because they were attacked, not because they chose to fight against Germany.

    The USA could perhaps have entered without Pearl Harbor, because by that point they were already sending a lot of material and the stuff to Britain and were involved a bit in the war in the Atlantic (the first US casualties in WWII were before Pearl Harbor, in the Atlantic).  But the general population was still a bit isolationist and it could be argued that they wouldn’t have entered until a lot later without the surprise attack.  If London did fall, I don’t see how that would prompt the USA to enter the war, because at that point they would have essentially been alone against Germany (collaboration with the USSR was difficult due to them being in opposite sides of Europe).

    From a gameplay perspective, allowing the USA to declare war so early severely limits Japan’s options by forcing an early confrontation.

    The USSR almost definitely would have stayed out of the war entirely without Barbarossa, so I don’t see why they can declare war so early (though this isn’t as much of an issue as the USA because the German player needs to attack Russia early). But having such an early limit gives the German player a timetable that isn’t realistic for them to have to follow.



  • If I was the designer, I would allow all nations to attack anyone at any time, because this is how the real world works, man.

    But for playability, I would let US start with nothing so they had to use the 3 first turns to build factories and stuff, and Russia too should start with nothing but an infantry-stack at the border so Germany would need 2 turns to build units before they could attack Russia. Of course Germany would start with infantry only on the Eastern Front, and all tanks, art and aircrafts at the Western Front. To bad I am not the designer.



  • @Razor:

    If I was the designer, I would allow all nations to attack anyone at any time, because this is how the real world works, man.

    But for playability, I would let US start with nothing so they had to use the 3 first turns to build factories and stuff, and Russia too should start with nothing but an infantry-stack at the border so Germany would need 2 turns to build units before they could attack Russia. Of course Germany would start with infantry only on the Eastern Front, and all tanks, art and aircrafts at the Western Front. To bad I am not the designer.

    It’s supposed to emulate the political situation.  I mean, you wouldn’t be in power of the US very long if you tried to invade the UK.


  • Customizer

    Stalin had expansionist plans of his own.  He needed to build up his armed forces first, thanks a lot to his own paranoid purges of the army.  That was part of the reason Molotov and Ribbentrop signed the non-aggression pact, so Russia could continure building up it’s armed forces and getting them more modernized.  The pace also allowed Russia to take the Eastern half of Poland, annex the Baltic States and even extend her sphere of influence into parts of Eastern Europe without German involvement.
    So, if Russia builds up enough force along the German border, and Germany leaves itself too weak there, I think it’s entirely possible that Russia could have been the one to initiate hostilities by advancing into Eastern Europe.  Remember, one of Russia’s goals was to create a buffer of foreign territories to further protect Russia itself from invasion.



  • @knp7765:

    Stalin had expansionist plans of his own.  He needed to build up his armed forces first, thanks a lot to his own paranoid purges of the army.  That was part of the reason Molotov and Ribbentrop signed the non-aggression pact, so Russia could continure building up it’s armed forces and getting them more modernized.  The pace also allowed Russia to take the Eastern half of Poland, annex the Baltic States and even extend her sphere of influence into parts of Eastern Europe without German involvement.
    So, if Russia builds up enough force along the German border, and Germany leaves itself too weak there, I think it’s entirely possible that Russia could have been the one to initiate hostilities by advancing into Eastern Europe.  Remember, one of Russia’s goals was to create a buffer of foreign territories to further protect Russia itself from invasion.

    Yeah, that was certainly possible, but I don’t think it was going to happen in 1941 or even 1942 regardless of the German military presence on the border.  The German military was leagues ahead of the Soviet one at the time (as exemplified by the disaster that was the Winter War) and in a secret speech to the Politburo Stalin explained the pact as a way to let the two sides weaken each other and give the USSR 10 years of peace and preparation.


  • 2018 2017 2016 '11 Moderator

    I have already attempted to talk Larry into changing the DOW rules for Russia so that if England falls and/or Germany drops below a certain threshold of Infantry then Russia can declare war prior to Round 4.  He didn’t seem to want to comment on it.  Honestly, I highly doubt Stalin was honorable enough to see Germany draw down most (if not virtually all) their troops to take out London and NOT take advantage of the situation with an invasion of his own.

    America already can declare war the instant England falls.


  • Customizer

    @Cmdr:

    America already can declare war the instant England falls.

    See, now that is a rule I wonder about.  Ruanek is right about the American public being VERY isolationist in the early 40s.  Most people felt that the whole war in Europe was just another “European squabble” and not to be meddled with.  I think there was a Gallup Poll just a little while before Pearl Harbor that showed 4 out of 5 Americans felt this way.  So, I’m not so sure America would have entered the war even if London fell.  After all, London was still Europe, not a part of America. 
    It took Pearl Harbor, actual American sailors and airmen being killed and American assets getting blown up, to get the American people hungry for war, and then it was mainly against Japan.  The only reason we ended up going after Germany and Italy was because Hitler and Musolini formally declared war on the US because of the Tripartite Pact with Japan.  I often wonder if they didn’t declare war on the US and/or if England actually fell to the Axis if the US would have went after the European Axis at all.  They might have just ended up in a war against Japan.
    However, if Axis troops actually landed in Canada, that may be a different story.  Not sure if Americans would tolerate the Axis so close to home.


  • 2018 2017 2016 '11 Moderator

    Yes, but a good strategy is to leave England under-defended so Germany attacks it on round 2, thus, USA declares war on Round 2.  If you stack right, you might even have the equipment to liberate it on Round 3.



  • America declaring war when London falls seems highly implausible. That’s a long way to go with no allies to help. I don’t see it.

    If any Axis power attacked America then i could see a DOW against all Axis powers. Or if China had only one territory left i could see an American DOW again Japan. The current DOW rules are too contrived and unnatural.



  • @Cmdr:

    I have already attempted to talk Larry into changing the DOW rules for Russia so that if England falls and/or Germany drops below a certain threshold of Infantry then Russia can declare war prior to Round 4.  He didn’t seem to want to comment on it.  Honestly, I highly doubt Stalin was honorable enough to see Germany draw down most (if not virtually all) their troops to take out London and NOT take advantage of the situation with an invasion of his own.

    America already can declare war the instant England falls.

    Except we all know how prepared the USSR was for war when Germany actually did attack.  They had orders to hold fire.  Stalin certainly wasn’t honorable, but he wasn’t stupid enough to attack a country powerful enough to take out Britain.  It just makes no sense that he would declare war in that scenario.

    @Cmdr:

    Yes, but a good strategy is to leave England under-defended so Germany attacks it on round 2, thus, USA declares war on Round 2.  If you stack right, you might even have the equipment to liberate it on Round 3.

    And there’s no historical basis for that at all.  Realistically the USSR and the USA didn’t want to join the war, especially as early as they did.  And allowing them to declare war so early takes away some interesting possibilities from the Axis, while now at least they always have to go for things in a certain order, etc.


  • 2018 2017 2016 '11 Moderator

    Strategy for a game and historical accuracy are different things.  Remember, this is a game, not a recreation of history.  At best it is a “what if” but more accuractely, it is a game of the World War II flavor.

    If you make the game historically accurate (IL did this for revised once) you make it unplayable.  Historically speaking, America should have thrice the carrier groups, at least double the aircraft, England hsould have way more destroyers, America should not be limited to coastal territories on the Atlantic board, Russia should be able to declare whenever they want on whomever they want and probably have a lot more infantry (maybe roll the dice to see if they actually show up or something.)  After America’s in the war, China should be able to buildwhatever htey want to represent gifts from America.  England should either stand together or fall together, none of this split stuff.  Germany should probably have five times as many submarines and all scattered around the north and central atlantic…

    As you can see, things get really messy and balance goes out the window quickly.



  • Ok, so where’s the harm to the game if the USA and the USSR don’t have the ability to enter the war so early?



  • Because then the players for Russia and US are having booger picking contests while they wait 5 rounds to actually get to play.

    Remember, lots of people play this game multiplayer, not 2 plyr.



  • @JimmyHat:

    Because then the players for Russia and US are having booger picking contests while they wait 5 rounds to actually get to play.

    Remember, lots of people play this game multiplayer, not 2 plyr.

    Actually, I almost never play this game 2-player.:)

    I meant harm to game balance, not personal preference.  (I personally would be ok with not being able to attack for the first few turns (like it already is) to show historical accuracy.)


  • 2018 2017 2016 '11 Moderator

    It would almost certainly ensure that Russia falls before America can save it.



  • @Cmdr:

    It would almost certainly ensure that Russia falls before America can save it.

    You’re making some assumptions about when the USA would be able to enter the war.  You could easily say that the more powerful Germany gets (e.g. the more of the USSR it takes) the sooner the USA can enter the war to stop the German menace.


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