US#1 Buys - ROCmonster's Video



  • My American first round purchase consists of 2 Carriers and 1 Battleship off San Fransisco. It comes to an even $52, it falls perfectly in line with the minimum 3 unit placement on the minor factory in western USA, its the most logical purchase in order to get all their startup fighters into a fight, and it brings the American fleet to near equallity with the Japanese fleet in regards to size and strength. I believe its the best build for the US in the first round, regardless of how the US decides to split its income and forces when they enter the war. Any ideas on this?


  • Customizer

    Actually, that sounds like a very good buy.  I will have to remember this if/when I play USA (our group pulls countries at random so different players have the chance to be allied or axis).  This sounds like pretty much a 100% Pacific strategy for the US, right?  Personally, I have found that strategy is just about the only way for the Allies to win the game.  The US builds most of it’s stuff in the Pacific and once it’s in the war, goes after Japan hard.  You’ve got to pound the Jap navy down as quickly as possible and try to keep them from spreading too much (DEI in particular).  Perhaps the US could spend a little in the Atlantic to help support England some, but definitely 90% or so in the Pacific until Japan is beaten down.  You don’t even actually have to invade Japan yet, just get that navy sank then use subs to convoy raid them and bombers to SBR them into the poorhouse.  If Japan keeps trying to match the US Navy, then they won’t be putting enough land units in Asia and eventually the Chinese and Brits will start to wear them down.  Plus, ANZAC should be able to take back any islands Japan got so Japan will make less and less.  Once you have them more or less cornered on their island, then you can send stuff over to Europe to deal with Germany, hopefully before Russia falls all together.
    In most of our games, the Axis have won.  I have figured out that it is mostly due to how America gets involved.  When USA tries to split it’s economy somewhat evenly between both theaters, they just don’t seem to have enough to really deal with the Axis in either one.  Japan will be able to match naval buys while still leading an offensive in Asia and Germany will be able to put up enough defensive units to keep the Allies out of Europe even while driving farther into Russia.
    In one game, the Allies just about won because USA went mostly Europe.  Italy was smashed and Germany was getting really hemmed in.  Unfortunately, it didn’t happen quick enough because the Japanese went crazy on the Pacific board and got 7 of the 8 VCs.
    One of the worst things the USA player can do is play reactionary.  I have seen a number of games where USA was going heavy in the Pacific and giving Japan a really hard time.  Then Germany took London and suddenly USA was spending heavy in the Atlantic to try and help out the Brits.  Of course, this gave Japan some breathing room and they started to catch back up.  When the main US fleet got sunk by Japan, USA freaked out and started buying warships in the Pacific again.  The result was while they liberated London, they weren’t able to properly fortify it and Germany took it again, along with another healthy plunder of Britain’s treasury.  By the time the US player could figure out which way to go, the Axis had enough VCs on BOTH boards.



  • Great assessment!. I will just echo some of what you said as far as my own philosophy is concerned. I spend 90% Pacific to sink the Jap fleet and disrupt convoys, the other 10% in the Atlantic where I land in Africa and continue with my few warships into the Med, to support the British against the Italians during the later rounds of their naval battles. Totally agree about how the US can’t play reactionary, they must lay down a solid plan and stick to it. The factory in Calcutta should be able to support Russia from the south, if the US can sink the Jap fleet early, that’s why I prefer all my American ships off the coast of Queensland at the moment of declaring war…… We think a lot a like.


  • Customizer

    One thing you got me on is the idea of the factory in Calcutta helping to support the Soviet Union.  You see, we tend to not play that way, with such support.  That may be why most of our games end up in Axis victories.  Usually there is 5 or 6 of us playing.  With 6 players it goes:  #1 Germany, #2 Italy, #3 Japan, #4 UK/ANZAC, #5 USA/France, #6 USSR/China.  I know the rules say USA should go with China and USSR with France, but we thought it was better this way.  The problem is that we all end up playing more or less as 6 individual players rather than teams of 3.  Oh sure, the Allies will occupy each other’s territories, have fighter planes on an ally’s carrier or make one landing after another to build up defense (US lands on Normandy, UK backs up). 
    However, I have seen many other players talk of much more support between Allied forces.  For example:  The US sending in ships to fight a Japanese fleet and possibly getting wiped out in the process so that an ANZAC task force can come in and finish the job and/or take back territory from Japan.  I guess we are more singularly focused.  As for your idea of sending UK units from Calcutta to support the Soviets, in our games the Western Allies almost never send units into Russia.  If the Pacific is going good, usually the Calcutta IC will start sending planes and/or tanks over to help out against the Italians in Africa, but never up into Russia.  Unfortunately, Russia is usually pretty much left to fend on her own, which if Germany isn’t getting enough pressure from the west can spell doom for Russia.
    Now, the Axis on the other hand can pretty much get away with playing more singularly.  I mean, Japan is pretty much way too far away to be able to get or receive much help from Germany or Italy.  Heck, Pacific 1940 pretty much is all Japan.  As for Germany and Italy, after the first round or two, they can mostly go on their separate ways.  Aside from Germany sending down a couple of planes to help protect the Italian fleet, there is not a whole lot of collaberation.  Once France falls and UK is bottled up on their island, Germany mostly goes east after Russia.  After Italy takes S France and Greece, they pretty much work on clearing the Med of Allied ships and heading south into Africa and maybe into the Middle East as well.
    I think you are right that the Allied players should support each other more to win.  I’ve got to remember that the next time I am an Allied nation.  While I like playing the Axis, especially Germany, I would like to see more Allied wins in our games, even if I have to be an Axis when they do.



  • Your dilemma is very interesting to me, because I play in a 6 player group and most of our results end in an Allies win. As allies we all have our roles to play in ensuring our collective goal, I remember sacraficing my entire fleet to weaken the Japanese significantly and I was a small hero in a way because ANZAC and the UK were able to fulfill their roles because they had a lot less pressure on them. We have little huddles about how we are going to help Russia, because if Moscow falls, its all over and we know it. There is no point in building a huge fleet and selfishly hoarding it for the sake of accumulation, when your allies have been squashed and the enemy is much more powerful together than you are alone, but I’m sure you understand all this. What’s really crazy in our games is that the Axis are so overwhelmed by such a cohesive attack that their window of opportunity can be measured before their downfall (we have it at 7 rounds max). This has forced our Axis powers to also plan the big picture ahead of time, and work together towards a collective end, this has translated into Japan plowing through China and heading straight for Stalingrad, Italy taking Cairo and containing the UK by blocking in Persia, and all Germany needs to do is take Leningrad and Moscow. However, the timing of such an operation is crucial, which makes it very difficult to pull off. Japan winning in the Pacific in our games is very tough, not impossible, just tough. If our groups allies played as individuals as the case in your group, our Axis powers would have a lot of pressure off them, and would win a lot more than they have been. I saw a game recently where the Americans didn’t chase the Jap navy and was conservative with their units, the Japs took Calcutta and almost Sydney, so there was a close call for the Allies and the only thing that saved them was the wording of the victory condition which states that the victory cities must be held for a complete turn. I mention this game because, I wanted to demonstrate how important it is for the allies to work together.



  • I like to purchase 6 subs and 2 destroyers. This gives you the threat of going atlantic, while still letting you pull the units back to the pacific. I build carriers in later rounds once I know what my opponnet is doing.


  • Customizer

    Yeah, I can see what you are talking about.  Since I have been reading other people’s ideas and strategies on the Forum, there have been several games where afterward I look over the board and realize at one time or another, there were very similar situations throughout the game.  Then I think, “You know, if that US fleet would have attacked instead of holding back, ANZAC could have taken advantage.  OR if that group of UK bombers would have went all out against that German force, the Russians could have counterattacked.”  Stuff like that makes me wonder if certain games could have ended up as Allied vicotries rather than Axis.
    Most of our games end up 7 or 8 rounds.  Usually the Axis will get the required number of VCs then we play one more round to see if they can hold them.  You mentioned most of your games were Allied wins that are usually 7 rounds or so.  Are they TOTAL Allied wins with Berlin, Rome and Tokyo all in Allied hands?  Or does it get to a point where the Axis players know they are going to lose and concede defeat?  In the few games we have had that were Allied victories, those games usually go very long, like 13 or 14 rounds.  Even though the Axis get beaten back really bad and you know they will never get the VCs needed, it can still take a long time to roll them back all the way to the capitals.



  • @theROCmonster:

    I like to purchase 6 subs and 2 destroyers. This gives you the threat of going atlantic, while still letting you pull the units back to the pacific. I build carriers in later rounds once I know what my opponnet is doing.

    This is often my first buy as well.
    Subs are good units to be sent forward (be it Atlantic or Pacific), getting in position to strike when war starts. And destroyers are always a good choice.

    Usually i buy AC/BB in my 2nd US turn.



  • I wouldn’t recommend building BB’s, but you see my point. I don’t like putting all my eggs in one basket. Say the axis declare war on me R2 I like to have america able to do something in the atlantic as well as the pacific. I also keep my transport back in eastern US so I can take brazil R2 in case of an early attack.



  • I usually like to build up a small invasion force on both maps. There are usually enough ships to start in the Pacific that I’ll be ok for like the first turn or 2 but I usually like 6 transports A1, 3 on each side, followed by getting 4 inf 2 art and 2 tanks on each cost to head off for small entering invasions.



  • I feel if you don’t spend nearly 100% for pacific Japan will overwhelm you in that theatre. So is your goal to take out the axis on the Europe side?



  • Just get enough on Europe side to take pressure off of U.K. and Russia, then wittling down japan till they are standing on a half a leg.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    @Young:

    My American first round purchase consists of 2 Carriers and 1 Battleship off San Fransisco. It comes to an even $52, it falls perfectly in line with the minimum 3 unit placement on the minor factory in western USA, its the most logical purchase in order to get all their startup fighters into a fight, and it brings the American fleet to near equallity with the Japanese fleet in regards to size and strength. I believe its the best build for the US in the first round, regardless of how the US decides to split its income and forces when they enter the war. Any ideas on this?

    Another option:  Minor complex in Mexico, now you can put 6 units into SZ 10 prior to war.  Not saying it’s a GOOD option, just an option I have seen used.  I personally use yours for your reasoning, to get all the planes in the water.

    I follow up with 4 destroyers and a battleship next round (2 destroyers in SZ 101 for anti-submarine duty) if submarines look to be an issue, else I go 2 fighters, carrier, 2 destroyers iwth the fighters in E. USA the ships in SZ 10.


  • Customizer

    I know this is about US1 purchase, but I have to ask for some opinions.
    I just finished the first round of a new game.  Germany purchased a CV and two Trn in preparation for Sealion.  At the end of G1, I had 1 BB (w/1 hit), 1 CV, 1 CA, 1 SS, 1 Ftr & 1 Tac plus 3 trans all in SZ 112.  Also, on W Germany I had 2 Ftr + 1 Tac for scramble.  Germany killed the BB & DD in SZ 111, both CAs in SZ 112. 
    However, UK still had the BB & CA in SZ 110, the DD & Trn in SZ 109 and the CA in SZ 91. 
    On UK 1, UK threw all those ships (except the Trn) plus 4 fighters and 1 bomber at the German fleet.  Some good UK dice, bad German dice and by the end the German navy was wiped out.  UK only had 1 damaged BB and 1 bomber left, but London is saved from Sealion.  Not only that, the Luftwaffe is down to 1 Ftr, 1 Tac and 2 Strats.  Also, since it was fairly obvious that I was trying Sealion, USSR has massed on the border and is chomping at the bit.  Meanwhile, Germany is very light along the border, with a moderate force in Yugoslavia, a stack of men in W Germany and some tanks in France.
    My question is:  WHAT DOES GERMANY DO NOW?
    Do I kill that old British BB and buy new ships to try Sealion again?  Except for the 1 bomber, the RAF is dead in London.  Also, Germany does have 71 IPCs to spend.  Or, do I forget about Sealion and start putting stuff on the Eastern Border while trying to rebuild the Luftwaffe?
    I’ve had setbacks as Germany before, but not quite this bad.  Just kind of threw me for a loop.  Anyone out there have any ideas?


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    First, KNP, have you found the carriage return? Sorry…just it would be great if you could put spaces between paragraphs…just for my own eyes. ^_^

    @knp7765:

    I know this is about US1 purchase, but I have to ask for some opinions.
    I just finished the first round of a new game.  Germany purchased a CV and two Trn in preparation for Sealion.  At the end of G1, I had 1 BB (w/1 hit), 1 CV, 1 CA, 1 SS, 1 Ftr & 1 Tac plus 3 trans all in SZ 112.  Also, on W Germany I had 2 Ftr + 1 Tac for scramble.  Germany killed the BB & DD in SZ 111, both CAs in SZ 112.

    Bad move in my opinion.  Assuming they hit what I do on Round 1, this leaves them open to a counter attack on UK 1.  A better move, in my opinion, would be AC, DD (and if you are paranoid, SS, but I save the 6 IPC.)

    However, UK still had the BB & CA in SZ 110, the DD & Trn in SZ 109 and the CA in SZ 91.

    Sounds like they did what I do on Germany 1, in that case, yes, you woulda been better off with an AC/DD than AC/2Trn.

    On UK 1, UK threw all those ships (except the Trn) plus 4 fighters and 1 bomber at the German fleet.  Some good UK dice, bad German dice and by the end the German navy was wiped out.  UK only had 1 damaged BB and 1 bomber left, but London is saved from Sealion.  Not only that, the Luftwaffe is down to 1 Ftr, 1 Tac and 2 Strats.  Also, since it was fairly obvious that I was trying Sealion, USSR has massed on the border and is chomping at the bit.  Meanwhile, Germany is very light along the border, with a moderate force in Yugoslavia, a stack of men in W Germany and some tanks in France.
    My question is:  WHAT DOES GERMANY DO NOW?

    And that’s why I said DD > 2 Trn

    Do I kill that old British BB and buy new ships to try Sealion again?  Except for the 1 bomber, the RAF is dead in London.  Also, Germany does have 71 IPCs to spend.  Or, do I forget about Sealion and start putting stuff on the Eastern Border while trying to rebuild the Luftwaffe?

    What did Russia do?  Where is Japan?

    I’ve had setbacks as Germany before, but not quite this bad.  Just kind of threw me for a loop.  Anyone out there have any ideas?

    Assuming Japan went after China and Russia did a pretty standard turtle build it all really depends on how your SZ 112 went.  Did you drop the fighters in the water?  If so, then you might only need an AC to protect transports for your attack.

    Based on how I see the board at this point:

    1)  Buy: 1 Aircraft Carrier, 8 Transports
    2)  2 Strategic Bomber to UK: SBR (assumes no fighters, if there are fighters for some reason, 4 fighters, 2 tacticals, 2 strategics to England hit the Major and the Airbase)
    3)  Hit England proper.

    I am assuming:  72 IPC for Germany to spend (should be easy to attain), England without significant fighters left after hitting SZ 112.



  • how in the world did uk get 4 fighters there?


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    @theROCmonster:

    how in the world did uk get 4 fighters there?

    Not sure where you mean, but I’ll assume England:

    1 French Fighter
    2 English Fighters in England
    1 English Fighter in Scotland

    = 4 Fighters


  • Customizer

    No, the French fighter was still in London (couldn’t attack with UK forces).  It was 2 Ftrs from England, 1 Ftr from Scotland and 1 Ftr from Gibraltar.  UK purchased a CV with the intention of placing it in SZ 110 so the Gibraltar fighter could land.  Since all Brit fighters were killed, UK placed the CV down by S Africa to keep it away from German Subs and Aircraft.

    I would also mention that UK spanked Italy pretty hard.  The UK CV in SZ 98 went to SZ 92 along with the Trn from SZ 109.  CV still had Brit Tac on it.  UK killed  Ital DD & Trn SZ 96, placed CA in SZ 96 and DD in SZ 99 as blockers for Egypt.  UK took Ethiopia and withdrew Alexandria force to Egypt leaving 1 Inf behind as blocker.  Placed Minor IC on Egypt that Italy could not get to.

    Italy took Greece but lost most of their navy.  Sent 1 SS, 1 DD, 1 CA and 1 bomber after UK CV & Tac in SZ 92.  Horrible Dice for Italy.  CV was damaged but survived and Tac survived, landed on Gibraltar.  All Italian units killed.  Italy also lost BB & 1 Ftr killing British CA in SZ 96.  Again, horrible dice for Italy.  One cruiser and 1 Fighter took out UK DD in SZ 99, no Italian losses.  So, Italian navy reduced to 1 cruiser SZ 99 and 2 Transports SZ 97 protected by 2 Italian and 1 German fighter on airbase S Italy.

    Russia got aggressive.  Massing heavily all along border with Germany.  Moved all 18 Inf to Amur + 2 AA Guns.  Japan attacked and killed them, surviving with 3 Inf, 2 Art, 1 Mech & 1 Tank in Amur.  All Jap planes survived.  Russia was intending to take Korea, but is out of the question.  Except for 6 Inf in Manchuria, Russia is out of troops in the East.  Japan did fairly well against China, but CHina did take Yunnan back and has a pretty strong front against Japanese.  Japan built Minor in Shanghai, may have to wait to advance further.  Also, Japan may be out of position to take DEI before US enters the war.

    So you think Sealion would still be a good choice?  UK is very weak right now == 1 French Inf and 1 UK bomber in London (+ 4 AA guns), 1 UK Inf in Scotland, no navy except for the damaged BB in SZ 112.  I guess it could still work, but worried about what USSR is going to do.

    Had 1 German sub in SZ 106 so tried the new Convoy Raid system.  Rolled 2 dice, got a 4 and a 1 so only got to cause 1 IPC damage.  So far, not liking it but we will see.  Hope my spacing is better.  I know what you mean, it is sometimes hard to read when it’s all clumped together.  Thanks for the advice.


  • Customizer

    UPDATE:  Germany is going after Sealion.  UK put 1 CV with 1 French Ftr in SZ 110.  Also 1 French CA and 1 French DD.  Looked like Sealion was a no go since Germany has 1 sub, 7 transports, 1 Ftr and 2 Bombers.  However, realized German transports can reach SZ 109 around north end of England/Scotland.  Just 1 UK transport in SZ 109 and NO fighters to scramble.

    Not looking forward to Russian juggernaut.  Russia down to 2 infantry in far east.  Japan having problems with China.  Large US fleets looming and potential for London to fall threatens Japan in Pacific.  Just not sure how things are going to work out.



  • Maybe hit Novgorod?


  • Customizer

    Germany ended up doing Sealion and took London with quite a bit left;  I think 4 or 5 tanks, 3 inf and 2 art.  Since the UK sank the Italian navy, those two French ships in the Med sailed on up to SZ 109 and killed all the German transports so all that stuff was stuck on England and therefore no help at all against Russia.  USSR did attack and got Finland, Romania, Slovakia/Hungary but lost in Poland.  After that, Russia managed to keep trading territories with Germany – first it was Baltic States and E Poland.  Germany would take them and Russia would take them back.  This went on for several rounds which gave the US time to get enough men and equip over and liberate London.  Then the balance shifted some and Germany and Russia started trading Poland and Slovakia back and forth.  Russia already had Finland and Norway and managed to push into Romania again.  US took Denmark and W Germany, Germany took W Germany back, US took it again.  Italy never got their navy back and with the UK back in the game and buying stuff, they went after Italy and eventually took Rome.
    Meanwhile, the US fleet just pounded the Japanese.  Japan couldn’t replace the losses while USA could.  Japan lost their mainland force to attacks by Chinese, Russian, British and ANZAC attacks.  Even their big air force got whittled down.  Eventually Japan was cornered on their island and convoy raided into the poorhouse.  They were collecting 0 IPCs for 3 rounds or so.  ANZAC had built up enough transports, troops and planes so they tried an invasion and ended up taking Japan.  This was a surprise because Japan had a lot of guys on Japan + 3 fighters that they got before the US started convoy raiding them silly.  USA also had an invasion fleet ready and the plan was for ANZAC to hit Japan and kill as many guys possible then USA would finish the job.  ANZAC got some good dice and ended up winning after all.

    Vance, I think you have the right idea.  I don’t think Sealion is a good strategy for Germany anymore, unless the ROyal Navy is totally killed off, which I failed to do this time.  That caused my navy to be sunk and delayed my invasion of England another crucial round.  Also, I was still too weak on the Eastern Border and Russia just had a field day.  Sure, they lost in Poland, but everywhere else I was crushed.  Germany never really recovered and Russia was able to keep pouring on the heat.  I think a better strategy is to kill the Royal Navy then head east.  Leave London alone and deal with Russia with much better strength.


  • Customizer

    By the way Grasshopper.  Your purchase plan for the US worked great for our US player this game.  They had a HUGE navy in the Pacific which easily handled the Jap Navy.  Your plan was followed through round 4.  By that time, USA was in the war and circumstances demanded different buys – mainly more transports and land units for Europe.  USA was able to not only keep the Jap navy in check, but pretty much smash it up good and at the same time built up a big enough force to liberate London and give the Germans headaches.



  • @knp7765:

    By the way Grasshopper.  Your purchase plan for the US worked great for our US player this game.  They had a HUGE navy in the Pacific which easily handled the Jap Navy.  Your plan was followed through round 4.  By that time, USA was in the war and circumstances demanded different buys – mainly more transports and land units for Europe.  USA was able to not only keep the Jap navy in check, but pretty much smash it up good and at the same time built up a big enough force to liberate London and give the Germans headaches.

    Great to hear that my purchase strategy found some success, did they also use my movement strategy of sailing ships to the Queensland shore during peace time?



  • I just played out your strat Grasshopper. Japan still can easily hold phillipines. I put up blockers to take all the money islands on turn4. Right now US just completed T5 and has a supperior navy to Japan, but US still can’t take and hold phillipines. US can’t even take the sea zone outside phillipines. Japan is still making in the 66-68 range, but is about to have only 2 transports left and US as well has 2 transports. Along with anzac help I see US taking phillipines and holding it on R8 at the earliest. Japan is building 9 subs a turn. US is purchasing 9 subs 1 destroyer 1 fighter a turn. Sooner or later the economic advantage will swing drastically and japan will be making in the 30’s to 40’s and america in the 80’s or even more. The problem I see though is that Russia is going to fall before America can put sufficient forces in europe. Right now I am having Italy building all infantry from T2 except for a sub I bought in T1 and a mech for russia. Italy has a ton of men on the home lands, so UK can’t really do much by himself. Interesting to see how things will end up. I am filming the whole game and am going to put it on youtube when I am done.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    @Young:

    @knp7765:

    By the way Grasshopper.  Your purchase plan for the US worked great for our US player this game.  They had a HUGE navy in the Pacific which easily handled the Jap Navy.  Your plan was followed through round 4.  By that time, USA was in the war and circumstances demanded different buys – mainly more transports and land units for Europe.  USA was able to not only keep the Jap navy in check, but pretty much smash it up good and at the same time built up a big enough force to liberate London and give the Germans headaches.

    Great to hear that my purchase strategy found some success, did they also use my movement strategy of sailing ships to the Queensland shore during peace time?

    Pretty sure American ships on the Atlantic have to be in sea zones adjacent to American territories until America is at war, so sailing to SZ 106 is not an option.


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