Alpha +3 Observations



  • I recently played my first alpha +3 game as the axis this past Saturday. However due to an emergency with my pet dog (she is currently in the hospital with internal bleeding, but is recovering well) I was only able to play the first 2 rounds.

    GERMANY

    In G1, I purchased an aircraft carrier and 2 transports

    I attacked France with just land units and Normandy with 3 infantry from Holland and 4 air units. I also attacked Yugoslavia.

    I attacked all sea zones except 109, 110 and 91. I attacked 106 with 4 subs and kept them all, but afterwards I noticed that with the destroyer in 109, the cruiser in 91 and all the british air units in England, my opponent could wipe out my 4 subs in 106, but when UK1 came around he retreated his ships to 87 which was a big mistake. Either didn’t see the opportunity or he was worried about my 3 transports in 112, but it seemed like he was pulling back to bait me into sealion, so he should have moved toward Canada and taken out my subs (I won’t make that mistake again).

    I was able to disrupt convoys for $3 and I moved 3 of the 4 subs into 121 hoping to eventually get 1 or 2 into 120 which is a pesky sea zone to the UK.

    I never took the bait, a least not yet. round 2 I purchased 1 strategic bomber, 1 fighter (I lost 1 in the 111 battle) 10 infantry and 3 tanks. My opponent was surprised that I didn’t buy the 10 transports like I always do, but with the 4 extra casualties, the absent $5 NO for holding London and the early entry of Russia when London falls…… was enough for me to back off, even after he opened it up to me… I decided to stick to my plan. I currently have 13 infantry in Denmark.

    What was really messing me up was that Russia was purchasing AA guns and spreading them out along the eastern front. By the time we ended round #2, Russia had 1 AA gun for every territory that mattered. I don’t think I need to tell you all what kinda meat grinder that will become when I need air support for my push toward Moscow. In fact I would go so far to say that because of the new AA gun rule, Russia can slow down any advance that involves air support and may end up being a huge balance issue (nothing is easy for Germany, in fact most options are bordering suicide).

    ITALY

    Italy did quite well over the span of 2 rounds, in fact they dominated because the UK med fleet evacuated through the suez and the aircraft went with it. by the time Italy got their first turn the french boats were the only thing in their way, so I purchased a transport and an infantry.

    Anyway…. to make a long story short, by the end of round 2, Italy had captured all of north Africa including Egypt, as well as Iraq, Syria, Trans Jordon and Gibraltar. by the end of round 2, Italy had all their National Objectives except for the 2 persian territories. I learned that UK action in the med is imperative and if the UK evacuates and leaves Italy alone… the consequences for the allies in Africa will be sever.

    JAPAN

    As Japan, I decided to hit China hard, and I mean really hard. I wanted to take them out of the game entirely. J1, I purchased 2 transports and 4 infantry which has become my standard J1 for the past few games. Round 2 I purchased a minor IC and placed it in Kiangsu in order to support the Chinese inhalation. At the end of round 2 I had plugged Korea and Manchuria with 4 infantry and 1 fighter each (Russia was not stacking in Amur but I didn’t want to leave that front bare. I have also made big gains in China and I am threatening the rest of the country by backing up their infantry stacks with what seems like overwhelming Japanese odds (tons of air units infantry and artillery). The only thing that concerns me is that America purchased a minor factory, 1 air base and 1 naval base US1 and placed it all in Alaska, they have also established quite the supply line from western USA through Canada.

    **SUMMARY  **

    I may need to reevaluate my reluctance to do Sealion (due to Russia’s commitment to air defense, the UK’s willingness to not defend London aggressively and the apparent KJF strategy for America. Italy is doing extremely well and can support in any direction they choose, or they can easily take all of Africa in 3 or 4 rounds. Japan should take all of China as planned and see if they can Keep those territories and hold off their enemies that will be quickly closing in. A defense of Tokyo will also come in to play if America supplies the Pacific and hits hard from Alaska.

    Regardless of what has already happened, the beginning of round 3 is next and Germany will be up. I believe what I do this round and what direction I take with Germany, will determine the outcome of the war.

    My opponent has gone on a 2 week WWII pilgrimage in Europe, so we won’t be able to pick up where we left off for a while, and I will have time to gather some advice. What do you think I can do to win the rest of the game.


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Hell of a good report.

    I think you’ve got this…  You’ll nickel and dime out those AA guns on the eastern front before you know it.  And maybe your opponent will build more!



  • @Gargantua:

    Hell of a good report.

    I think you’ve got this…  You’ll nickel and dime out those AA guns on the eastern front before you know it.  And maybe your opponent will build more!

    So I should stay the course and move into Russia without sealion?



  • @Young:

    @Gargantua:

    Hell of a good report.

    I think you’ve got this…  You’ll nickel and dime out those AA guns on the eastern front before you know it.  And maybe your opponent will build more!

    So I should stay the course and move into Russia without sealion?

    Yeah.  You need some VCs in Russia to win as Germany.  You don’t need London - you can get all the ones in Russia and Cairo instead.  You can still cripple the UK economically with subs and stuff.



  • Nice report!

    It seems that u are positioned to attack Russia and then its is prolly wise to follow throw. Japan and Italy will help weaken their economy from the east and south and if you avoid to much trading with the Germans the AA guns should not cause you to much problem. Might wanna to get some extra art into the mix and use them for trading.

    Also SZ 120 is not a convoy zone so you might want to send those subs somewhere else.

    Good luck!



  • @Dany:

    Nice report!

    It seems that u are positioned to attack Russia and then its is prolly wise to follow throw. Japan and Italy will help weaken their economy from the east and south and if you avoid to much trading with the Germans the AA guns should not cause you to much problem. Might wanna to get some extra art into the mix and use them for trading.

    Also SZ 120 is not a convoy zone so you might want to send those subs somewhere else.

    Good luck!

    Thanks for pointing that out, I forgot that a sea zone actually needs the covoy symbol in order to be eligible for disruptions. :roll:

    Germany is acually well positioned to attempt either sealion or barbarssa, but it is crucial that the decision be made immediately. I’m sure I will follow through with Russia and find a method of attack around those AA Guns. I guess I should be a little grateful for Russia spending on such a unit, especially if I use my entire air force against the British navy and start pounding out tanks against Russia. I still feel that the AA gun rule will eventually become a great Russian advantage.

    Italy will have their way as they are making the same $ as London and there is nothing in there way. It’s their war to lose. Japan on the other hand will need to keep a close eye on Alaska as it is the only threatening operation the allies have going for them.

    Thanks for the imput. Any other advice?


  • '10

    @mantlefan:

    I think he took his new to Alpha+.3 defender aa gun advantage a little to the extreme. There’s a balance between having enough to face the max number of planes and having enough units with a combat value. Who knows, would 3 of those AA guns he bought be better if they were 5 inf instead? It depends on what you do. It seems like his strat is good for a trading campaign but if you do a hard push without too many little side battles he loses that AA advantage, since he will be lacking rolls at 2 and his AA guns since he bought so many will go to waste in terms of firing.

    But it does raise an interesting question about new strengths for the defender.

    This is what I was thinking today as we played four rounds of Alpha +3. Would five infantry be better than three AA guns in most cases? Sea Lion was launched on turn three and the four AA guns were all used as fodder after not accomplishing much on the first combat round. Italy has been removed from Africa by the U.K. and a U.S. invasion. The U.S. is putting just enough pressure on Japan that the IJN has pulled back to sea zone six. Anzac and the Far East Command have started to take back some of the Indies. Japan is now weak in China but China is also weak. The Soviets have moved into China through Manchuria to help. The Soviets have also been holding back the Germans by buying an assortment of units so they can counter attack when possible. The jury is still out on this new AA gun rule. They seem a bit puny. Time will tell.


  • '10

    @mantlefan:

    The thing is, the one power for whom the AA gun rule will consistently do more harm than good is UK India (and for London it is HUGE)

    Buying a bunch of AA guns may be a bad idea, but most allied powers start with more than they need, so the adding an extra hit is only a bonus since they still fire as many shots as before (By the time Germany brings as much Air as it can spare to the big Russian stack, do you think that a good russia would be stupid enough to not have its 4 original AA there?)

    In our game today, Germany brought 10 planes in a Sea Lion attack and the 10 shots hit a grand total of one plane. It will be rare case indeed when Germany can bring enough planes to overwhelm the 4 AA guns. (13 or more) But at a cost of five IPCs will U.K. be better off buying infantry instead of more AA guns?



  • @Fishmoto37:

    @mantlefan:

    The thing is, the one power for whom the AA gun rule will consistently do more harm than good is UK India (and for London it is HUGE)

    Buying a bunch of AA guns may be a bad idea, but most allied powers start with more than they need, so the adding an extra hit is only a bonus since they still fire as many shots as before (By the time Germany brings as much Air as it can spare to the big Russian stack, do you think that a good russia would be stupid enough to not have its 4 original AA there?)

    In our game today, Germany brought 10 planes in a Sea Lion attack and the 10 shots hit a grand total of one plane. It will be rare case indeed when Germany can bring enough planes to overwhelm the 4 AA guns. (13 or more) But at a cost of five IPCs will U.K. be better off buying infantry instead of more AA guns?

    I’ve seen 10 dice miss completely, but I have also seen 10 dice roll 6 ones. We all know that 1 lucky roll can shot down a lot of cash, and when you are landing troops, you can’t retreat.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    @Gargantua:

    Hell of a good report.

    I think you’ve got this…  You’ll nickel and dime out those AA guns on the eastern front before you know it.  And maybe your opponent will build more!

    Agreed.  It is why I think Russia’s position is far weaker in Alpha 3 than it was in Alpha 2.  Sure, they have two more aa guns near the German front that they did not before, but they won’t last long and will most likely be used to bolster a large stack of units’ defense as they retreat, slowely, to Moscow.

    I think the biggest observation I have about Alpha 3 is the complete “blown out of proportion” attitude of players I have actually faced.  It is suddenly assumed that AA Guns are these omnipotent pieces on the gameboard that should drastically alter game play and I have not yet seen that perception supported by actual game evidence.  Do they have an effect?  Yes.  Is it disporportional?  Not really, it would have been far worse if Larry had used extra infantry instead of changing the guns.  Is it in favor of the Axis?  I believe so.



  • This are my thoughts about the new AAs

    I like the way they are limited to 3 shots, this scales well with a big game like Global40.

    However, I don’t like the AA guns being able to soak hits now.

    I’d like to reduce their cost to 3 IPCs but without any soakable capacity. Otherwise I don’t understand why Larry Harris decided to make transport a 0 hit unit…


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I like that they can be taken as damage.  An invading army would most likely destroy the AA Gun ability of the enemy if at all possible and the changes allowed England to be just a wee bit harder to take out before round 4.  This means that England has the opportunity to screw up their own lives or to stick around for a little bit.

    The best part about the changes to AA Guns are the increased number of AA Guns.  Gives the Germans a helluva advantage over the Russians!


  • '16 '15

    @Young:

    @Dany:

    Nice report!

    It seems that u are positioned to attack Russia and then its is prolly wise to follow throw. Japan and Italy will help weaken their economy from the east and south and if you avoid to much trading with the Germans the AA guns should not cause you to much problem. Might wanna to get some extra art into the mix and use them for trading.

    Also SZ 120 is not a convoy zone so you might want to send those subs somewhere else.

    Good luck!

    Thanks for pointing that out, I forgot that a sea zone actually needs the covoy symbol in order to be eligible for disruptions. :roll:

    Germany is acually well positioned to attempt either sealion or barbarssa, but it is crucial that the decision be made immediately. I’m sure I will follow through with Russia and find a method of attack around those AA Guns. I guess I should be a little grateful for Russia spending on such a unit, especially if I use my entire air force against the British navy and start pounding out tanks against Russia. I still feel that the AA gun rule will eventually become a great Russian advantage.

    Italy will have their way as they are making the same $ as London and there is nothing in there way. It’s their war to lose. Japan on the other hand will need to keep a close eye on Alaska as it is the only threatening operation the allies have going for them.

    Thanks for the imput. Any other advice?

    Well I think if Russia spends so much money on aa guns, it´ll be a good thing for Germany.
    If you see that your opponent make this choice, than you could take you aircraft to clear the atlantic with your fleet. Take Russia only with your land units. The AA guns can only taken as casualties and cannot fire back in land battle. So the advantage is on axis side.
    5 Infs are way better than 3 AA guns in my opinion for Russia.



  • @Young:

    @Dany:

    Nice report!

    It seems that u are positioned to attack Russia and then its is prolly wise to follow throw. Japan and Italy will help weaken their economy from the east and south and if you avoid to much trading with the Germans the AA guns should not cause you to much problem. Might wanna to get some extra art into the mix and use them for trading.

    Also SZ 120 is not a convoy zone so you might want to send those subs somewhere else.

    Good luck!

    Thanks for pointing that out, I forgot that a sea zone actually needs the covoy symbol in order to be eligible for disruptions. :roll:

    Germany is acually well positioned to attempt either sealion or barbarssa, but it is crucial that the decision be made immediately. I’m sure I will follow through with Russia and find a method of attack around those AA Guns. I guess I should be a little grateful for Russia spending on such a unit, especially if I use my entire air force against the British navy and start pounding out tanks against Russia. I still feel that the AA gun rule will eventually become a great Russian advantage.

    Italy will have their way as they are making the same $ as London and there is nothing in there way. It’s their war to lose. Japan on the other hand will need to keep a close eye on Alaska as it is the only threatening operation the allies have going for them.

    Thanks for the imput. Any other advice?

    Its hard to say much when one cant see the board. How many trs does Italy have? How many does Japan have and where are they? Has the UK stacked Persia?



  • Both Italy and Japan have 5 transports each at this point in the game.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I agree with Robson.  Russia is not going to be in the business of replacing lost AA Guns so eventually, you will remove those through attrition.

    Germany, on the other hand, may replace guns as needed, allowing them to use stacks of units to encourage the Russians to risk their much needed planes to AA Gun fire.  I am not above small stacks of 8-15 units with an AA Gun on my front lines to sap the strength of the Russians.  WIth Italian units opening the door and Japanese units removing much needed IPCs through territorial conquest, the Russians are getting beat into submission much sooner.

    Russia was strong in Alpha 2 because Germany was sending large stacks of IPC after England.  Without England siphoning off cash from the German treasury, the Germans can grow a lot faster than the Russians.

    Look at it mathematically:

    Germany starts with 30 IPC round 1, gets 70 IPC round 2 and 53 IPC round 3.  That is a total of 153 IPC to spend.

    Italy starts with 10 IPC round 1, at least 12 IPC round 2, and most likely at least 20 IPC round 3.  That’s about 42 IPC.

    Russia collects 37 IPC to spend on Round 1, 2 and 3.  Total: 111 IPC.

    Axis: 153 + 42 = 195 IPC
    Allies: 111 IPC
    Net: 84 IPC Axis


    Germany starts with 231 IPC worth of ground units in proximity to Russia.

    Italy starts with 70 IPC worth of ground units in proximity to Russia. (I took off the value of the units in Africa since the odds are very slim they will go to Russia in the first part of the game.)

    Russia starts with 175 IPC worth of units in proximity to Germany/Italy.

    Axis: 231 + 70 = 301 IPC
    Allies: 175 IPC
    Net: 126 IPC Axis


    Germany starts with 117 IPC worth of air power in proximity to Russia.

    Italy starts with 32 IPC worth of air power in proximity to Russia.

    Russia starts with 31 IPC worth of air power in proximity to Germany/Italy.

    Axis: 117 + 32 = 149 IPC
    Allies: 31 IPC
    Net: 118 IPC



    Over all:

    Axis: 195 + 301 + 149 = 645 IPC
    Allies: 111 + 175 + 31 = 317 IPC
    Net: 328 IPC Axis benefit.



    Yes, some of that will be lost in France.  Perhaps Germany will lose 7 Infantry, 4 Mechanized Infantry and 1 Artillery from their starting setup. That reduces them by 41 IPC which is a drop in the barrel of the over all game.

    That, of course, does not take into effect anything that the Japanese do.  It only looks at the first few rounds of the game, but it is pretty clear that the Russians are hopelessly under funded with little opportunity to spend money on big ticket items like AA Guns and Armored units, let alone more planes to replace those lost hitting German stacks, which should reduce them to infantry and artillery quickly enough.



  • Without a Sealion build, Great Britain can threaten France as early as turn 3… not very strongly, but by turn 5, the British can be landing in strength on the French and Scandinavian coasts.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    @cts17:

    Without a Sealion build, Great Britain can threaten France as early as turn 3… not very strongly, but by turn 5, the British can be landing in strength on the French and Scandinavian coasts.

    I don’t think so.

    England should have 1 Cruiser SZ 91, 1 Destroyer and 1 Transport in SZ 109 on England 1.  Germany will have 1 Battleship, 1 Aircraft Carrier, 2 Submarines, 1 Cruiser and 5 Fighters, 5 Tactical Bombers and 1 Strategic Bomber that can hit the British fleet if it builds one.  That means they have to pull out until the Med fleet can get there, and even then, with a few extra submarines or perhaps some more aircraft, that British fleet is going to have to remain away for quite a while until it is safe to come close to Europe.  Best guess, British units are not threatening France until Round 6 earliest, and then only with American ships helping to defend.  Even then, we’re talking 1 or 2 transports, nothing serious.  The Italians should be plenty strong enough to push any landings off France again.



  • With the new extra units for germany in AA + setups it must be really easy to pull down russia, its a easy job to do in out of box scenarios if the allies dont interfere with germany util r4+ but with that huge start bonus I cant see why one would ever want to do sea lion…
    I’d used to go the ultra push for mechs +30 with raising berlin and pumping mechs and a few tanks but with the new upping of the berlin factory one doesnt even have to do that one. So I guess putting up one or two small factories in R1 and 2 romania/poland and then pull in mechs to the front and art with the small factories until russia has to chose which factory he will defend. Also build a destroyer to place in zone 125 every round when oyu are at war, so what if britts sink it, you buy a new one block the bonus and smile. spending 8 ipc in order to kill russias 5 ipc bonus is way worth it.
    I dont like the setup that much its very oh we got to make sea lion a stalemate and preventable so alpha 4+ will be oh lets make russia strong…


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Spend 6 IPC to take out the Russian NO, Wrath.  A submarine in SZ 125 takes away the objective as well as a destroyer does.  It also requires the allies to send a destroyer to go kill it, instead of using only planes.

    Russia was buffed in Alpha 2 because many Axis players blew their strength on England, dedicating all of their power to taking it out and thus, not having enough to hit Russia with.  Now that England is no longer a prized posession, but more of a “well, I need one more VC to win, and it is underdefended” move, Russia is getting really easy to take out.

    Looking ONLY at the game board for the first 3 rounds (bringing you to Germany Round 4, Purchase New Units) one can see that the Axis are more than double Russia’s strength with more than double their income.  That means England and India need to be focused on sending reinforcements to Russia to prevent them from falling (and thus, negating the need to block SZ 125).  With the NonAggression arrangement being virtually nullified, there is no reason not to invade early and heavy with Japan and more reason TOO do it, to remove even more IPC from the Russians.

    So yes, Wrath, I agree, Barbarossa is probably the better avenue and makes Victory more assured, not assured, but more than attempting Sea Lion.    I don’t see Russia ever getting their Objectives (any of them).



  • @Cmdr:

    @cts17:

    Without a Sealion build, Great Britain can threaten France as early as turn 3… not very strongly, but by turn 5, the British can be landing in strength on the French and Scandinavian coasts.

    I don’t think so.

    England should have 1 Cruiser SZ 91, 1 Destroyer and 1 Transport in SZ 109 on England 1.  Germany will have 1 Battleship, 1 Aircraft Carrier, 2 Submarines, 1 Cruiser and 5 Fighters, 5 Tactical Bombers and 1 Strategic Bomber that can hit the British fleet if it builds one.  That means they have to pull out until the Med fleet can get there, and even then, with a few extra submarines or perhaps some more aircraft, that British fleet is going to have to remain away for quite a while until it is safe to come close to Europe.  Best guess, British units are not threatening France until Round 6 earliest, and then only with American ships helping to defend.  Even then, we’re talking 1 or 2 transports, nothing serious.  The Italians should be plenty strong enough to push any landings off France again.

    ??  Jenn why do you confuse yourself so often?  In the previous post that you put in here you said Germany would have 30+19+45 or whatever to get 70ipcs G2.  And you were adding up all those totals to show how much more money Germany has than Russia…and here you are spending 16 of those IPCS on a CV against UK?  Which is it?  Why do your ideas change from one post to the other?

    Face it, your ‘math’ is wrong because you use blanket statements and then when you try and define them find out your blanket statement was all wrong…or rather we find out…


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    16 IPC for a Carrier is just a good investment.  You dont need to use it against England, you are using it to make your fleet more defensible, thus, keeping the British fleet away from England and making it so you dont have to defend France as much.

    England is NOT going to put a fleet in SZ 109 when Germany has:
    5 Fighters
    5 Tactical Bombers
    1 Strategic Bomber
    3 or 4 Submarines (assuming all starting submarines were lost)
    1 Cruiser
    1 Battleship
    1 Carrier

    In range to attack it.  They dont have enough cash to support a fleet there without it being slaughtered.  So essentially, there will be no British fleet in the North Atlantic for the first 3 or 4 rounds, until they ahve enough cash to defend a fleet.  By then, Russia should be on it’s knees and Germany can look to self-defense in the West.



  • I just build my fleet in Canada and send it to the Med if Germany builds naval.  Let Germany build fleet, it’s easier for Russia to defend itself then.  That carrier could be 4 ART on the Eastern front, amounting to 12 attack value against the Russians.



  • @Cmdr:

    16 IPC for a Carrier is just a good investment.  You dont need to use it against England, you are using it to make your fleet more defensible, thus, keeping the British fleet away from England and making it so you dont have to defend France as much.

    England is NOT going to put a fleet in SZ 109 when Germany has:
    5 Fighters
    5 Tactical Bombers
    1 Strategic Bomber
    3 or 4 Submarines (assuming all starting submarines were lost)
    1 Cruiser
    1 Battleship
    1 Carrier

    In range to attack it.  They dont have enough cash to support a fleet there without it being slaughtered.  So essentially, there will be no British fleet in the North Atlantic for the first 3 or 4 rounds, until they ahve enough cash to defend a fleet.  By then, Russia should be on it’s knees and Germany can look to self-defense in the West.

    I got what you were saying, but I was pointing out you were adding Ipcs and not subtracting for the 16ipc CV you usually buy.  I always buy it anyways.  I think you should go back and edit your posts then, subtract the 16 ipcs for the G1 carrier…and any other ships.  This is about Russia vs Germany and although Russia has 3 boats German ships are seen as a counter to UK and not russia.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Ah, yes.  It is 16 IPC in Russia’s favor, but I did not really consider it that big of an impact. You are correct, the numbers should be reflected downward by at least 16 IPC, more accurately 28 IPC since I go Carrier, 2 Submarines on R1.


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