How to stop the double team on Russia



  • Ok, so when Germany attacks Russia G1 and Japan attacks Russia J1.  Japan uses all three starting transports to take soviet far east and amur, and lands half his airforce in Manchuria (other half in Kwangsi).  All Navy is at Hainan (all transports in SZ 6 and SZ 5).

    Russia retreated all units west on turn 1.

    This was the situation I found myself in last game and ended up losing pretty bad last game.  What can the Allies do when the US isn’t at war until turn 3/4?  Russia buys mostly Infantry and retreats to Moscow with some small counters in the west and in the east- retreats like hell.  As the UK I need to build some units in London because he built 2 transports as Germany (I did just that last game and he used them on Leningrad, but if I don’t, he may use them on London).

    I know I’m going to see the same opening again soon, probably with better efficiency on his part.  What to do?



  • There is nothing to do.  Slow them down best you can and say ur prayers in Russian.



  • @elevenjerk:

    There is nothing to do.  Slow them down best you can and say ur prayers in Russian.

    Not exactly the answer I was looking for.


  • TripleA

    just smash japan.

    so you lose russia you got a second russia with uk pacific.

    If you can keep japan from taking all the islands, you good to go. Block japan from islands with dds if necessary. Just handle the pacific and med sea / africa.



  • Smash Japan, send UK units to aid Russia after italy is contained, and win game.



  • This is the great question of our time, given that most experienced Axis players practice either a G1/J1 or a G2/J1.

    So the best I can do is give some general tips:

    #1 Beware adventuring too much to the north or south. You’ll need every single unit you have on the defense of Moscow. A proficient German player will take Moscow around G6 if they went G1 and have bought mostly mechanized units. So while you may bring in a little more economy - how many units did you spend to get that economy?

    #2 Do not purchase crazy units, like bombers. Yes, it will help you kill a few units before G6, but man, those 4 infantry for the same 12 IPCs defend a lot better (4 hits to kill; 8 defensive pips) than a bomber (1 hit to kill; 1 defensive pip). Do not purchase more airforce! Buy Infantry/Artillery/Mech for versatility, with Infantry your highest ratio… so 37 IPCs could be 7 Infantry/3 artillery/Mech for example. That purchase gives you some offensive punch and also a little mobility.

    #3 Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em. Moscow is the only IC that needs to be preserved. When the heat is too strong, fall back into your line of supplies. Remember that you’re getting closer to your production while Germany/Italy/japan are getting further away. Don’t be afraid to retreat.

    #4 Splitting armies is typically a no-no. Never ever ever allow Germany to take you apart one smaller army at a time. Be aware of Italy’s ability to take out a key Infantry and allow Germany’s mechanized forces to steamroll the next layer of Russians… or if you’re going to allow it, make sure you have plenty of units in range to cut off and destroy the tip of the German Schwerpunkt.

    #5 Understand your front(s). Against the European devils, Belarus is a fantastic place to make a stand. When the heat is too much, Bryansk is your next move. Finally, the turtle when you can no longer stand it. Against Japan, Timguska is the right place to draw the line - check out how mant territories it commands - and it can support China to keep them alive. Sometimes allowing China to purchase just one measly Infantry can mean the difference between life and death on the front.

    #6 Don’t be afraid to bug out completely. There may come a point when Moscow will fall, and both you and your opponent know it. The key to this is - by odds, will it be taken with one Armor and 2 Bombers remaining? If so, let them try. Even if they take it, they have been reduced to a pittance. But if they can take it with 14 Armor and 12 Luftwaffe units left? What’s the point of staying? Fall back… and heading to Samara, then to Kazahkstan, then to Caucasus (for example) can create a headache, especially if they fall back into some UK Infantry being churned out from Iraq every turn… You can win games with the Allies with a fallen Moscow - don’t ever make the mistake of thinking the game is just a race for Russia’s fall… sometimes the game is just beginning if you’ve played skillfully on the perimeter.

    #7 A general tip - Use the built-in battle calculator. It helps you rely on odds rather than the eyeball. If your opponent has less than a 50% chance to take a territory, stay put. Let them crash into you and die - let them play against the odds, not you. Yes, sometimes you’ll pay for it with lucky dice by your opponent, but most the time they’ll bleed. If the calculator says your opponent will win, believe the calculator. Fall back, unless your goal is to make them bleed for strategic purposes.

    That’s a start - I hope others give you some solid feedback as well.



  • @Stalingradski:

    This is the great question of our time, given that most experienced Axis players practice either a G1/J1 or a G2/J1.

    So the best I can do is give some general tips:

    #1 Beware adventuring too much to the north or south. You’ll need every single unit you have on the defense of Moscow. A proficient German player will take Moscow around G6 if they went G1 and have bought mostly mechanized units. So while you may bring in a little more economy - how many units did you spend to get that economy?

    #2 Do not purchase crazy units, like bombers. Yes, it will help you kill a few units before G6, but man, those 4 infantry for the same 12 IPCs defend a lot better (4 hits to kill; 8 defensive pips) than a bomber (1 hit to kill; 1 defensive pip). Do not purchase more airforce! Buy Infantry/Artillery/Mech for versatility, with Infantry your highest ratio… so 37 IPCs could be 7 Infantry/3 artillery/Mech for example. That purchase gives you some offensive punch and also a little mobility.

    #3 Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em. Moscow is the only IC that needs to be preserved. When the heat is too strong, fall back into your line of supplies. Remember that you’re getting closer to your production while Germany/Italy/japan are getting further away. Don’t be afraid to retreat.

    #4 Splitting armies is typically a no-no. Never ever ever allow Germany to take you apart one smaller army at a time. Be aware of Italy’s ability to take out a key Infantry and allow Germany’s mechanized forces to steamroll the next layer of Russians… or if you’re going to allow it, make sure you have plenty of units in range to cut off and destroy the tip of the German Schwerpunkt.

    #5 Understand your front(s). Against the European devils, Belarus is a fantastic place to make a stand. When the heat is too much, Bryansk is your next move. Finally, the turtle when you can no longer stand it. Against Japan, Timguska is the right place to draw the line - check out how mant territories it commands - and it can support China to keep them alive. Sometimes allowing China to purchase just one measly Infantry can mean the difference between life and death on the front.

    #6 Don’t be afraid to bug out completely. There may come a point when Moscow will fall, and both you and your opponent know it. The key to this is - by odds, will it be taken with one Armor and 2 Bombers remaining? If so, let them try. Even if they take it, they have been reduced to a pittance. But if they can take it with 14 Armor and 12 Luftwaffe units left? What’s the point of staying? Fall back… and heading to Samara, then to Kazahkstan, then to Caucasus (for example) can create a headache, especially if they fall back into some UK Infantry being churned out from Iraq every turn… You can win games with the Allies with a fallen Moscow - don’t ever make the mistake of thinking the game is just a race for Russia’s fall… sometimes the game is just beginning if you’ve played skillfully on the perimeter.

    #7 A general tip - Use the built-in battle calculator. It helps you rely on odds rather than the eyeball. If your opponent has less than a 50% chance to take a territory, stay put. Let them crash into you and die - let them play against the odds, not you. Yes, sometimes you’ll pay for it with lucky dice by your opponent, but most the time they’ll bleed. If the calculator says your opponent will win, believe the calculator. Fall back, unless your goal is to make them bleed for strategic purposes.

    That’s a start - I hope others give you some solid feedback as well.

    This is the best advice I’ve read in a long time.  I’ll comment more tomorrow when I can digest it fully!



  • Thank you sir  🙂

    I hope people add to it in a thoughtful way, because I feel it’s only a beginning to the conversation.

    I’m open to a dialogue about this - Russia is hard to play well. If you post something and I don’t come back and answer you on this thread, go ahead and PM me through the site.



  • I would also say that on a G1, almost always go for Iraq turn 1.  That and Persia are worth 7 IPCs to Russia, and with luck you can get a mech to Somalia.

    If Germany did not buy any Transports, it is also possible to take Finland for its 5 IPCs as well.  I don’t do it every game, but when I do it is a headache for Germany, especially if the UK can take Norway (Or hell, even Russia).



  • See my point #1 - beware adventuring too much. If you’re going to do it, I think it needs to be with minimal forces and only in one direction.

    I’ve seen the battle of Moscow come down to just 2 or 3 units making the difeerence between being attacked or my opponent having to agonize and wait another turn… which means maybe another Allied aircraft or two makes it to Moscow, etc. Don’t underestimate the importance of several, or even a single unit.

    Ask yourself this - how much will you make from Iraq? 5 IPCs a turn? Which round can you get it and start collecting? R2 at the earliest. If a G1 happened, what is the effect on the front of pulling 3 - 4 land units away to take Iraq?

    When you fall on G6 or G7, was that 20 - 25 IPCs worth the 14 - 16 IPCs worth of units that went down to take it? Will you ever know how useful those might have been at the right moment on the front?

    For me, unless Germany/Italy clearly have a perimeter game in mind, I stay put. You’ll need every scrap of material you can get.



  • I get you, but turn 2 getting Iraq with 2 Inf, 1 Mech, 1 Arm and then moving the Mech, Arm back to Moscow has been normal for me.  Perhaps getting Persia as well.  The +5/turn can add up - probably giving you a couple Inf more than you would have had.

    Agree that you can’t ‘adventure’ too much.  I always get a chuckle when people on here talk about sending mech/arm/air to fight Japan…



  • Yes, it will add up to a few more infantry, and you’re right that the mobile forces can get back. Those are both good points - but here’s another issue with Russia taking Persia/Iraq:

    Those are prime locations for UK ICs. What do they become when Russia inevitably falls? Wasted economy that the UK can no longer have, nor build upon. The Middle East/Caucasus region may be the most important front in the game. It needs to be defended, and fiercely. The Allies can win the game with a fallen Russia by making a stand in Caucasus… with Russia’s help.

    For a good view into strong Middle East play, look up any of Infrastructure’s games in the League section or Boardgames section… you’ll see variations of it (including an Anzacian IC in Iraq…). He created and perfected this style against me…



  • @Stalingradski:

    Yes, it will add up to a few more infantry, and you’re right that the mobile forces can get back. Those are both good points - but here’s another issue with Russia taking Persia/Iraq:

    Those are prime locations for UK ICs. What do they become when Russia inevitably falls? Wasted economy that the UK can no longer have, nor build upon. The Middle East/Caucasus region may be the most important front in the game. It needs to be defended, and fiercely. The Allies can win the game with a fallen Russia by making a stand in Caucasus… with Russia’s help.

    For a good view into strong Middle East play, look up any of Infrastructure’s games in the League section or Boardgames section… you’ll see variations of it (including an Anzacian IC in Iraq…). He created and perfected this style against me…

    Building an IC in Egypt and in Iraq/Persia seems like a recipe for disaster.  UK will be forced to spend all their money down there and will probably never have a legitimate force to invade France or Norway with.  Germany could move all its air to the East/South with no Normandy threat.  With a strong Japan it may be giving them (or Italy) an IC in the Mid East.

    ANZAC though.  Interesting.  Usually they don’t have the money to do much and their few ships they can build are immensely valuable for can openers.

    I’ll have to check out those games you talked about.



  • I don’t spend much in the Atlantic with UK and I do ok - I’m not a great Allied player, but can hold my own.

    My main focus is in the Middle east. The natural outcome of the fall of Moscow is a German mechanized assault on the Middle East. An IC in Persia built U2 can start building U3… three infantry per turn. Let’s say Germany knocks out Moscow on G6… those remaining forces can get to NW Persia on G8… and I want stacks of infantry to already be in Caucasus, preventing that. Caucasus is worth 7 IPCs to Germany, the Middle East nations are all worth an extra 2 (plus 2 for Iraq and Persia as they are). If Germany is rooted in the Middle East, game over.

    If you’re spending all your resources in the Atlantic, I can’t believe your opponent wouldn’t isolate and take Egypt with Italy, with Germany’s help. Then… UK’s economy starts to wither and die.

    Of course, it all depends on the nature of purchases your opponent makes. I can see why all Atlantic builds would be productive against someone who goes all out mechanized forces with no regard to air or sea.


  • 2017 2016 2015 '14 '12

    Stalingradski, what do you think of UK taking both Persia and Iraq on UK1 and building an IC in IRAQ UK2?



  • Splitting armies is typically a no-no

    This is 100% true except that with a well executed G1 the North Armies have no choice but to retreat to Archangel/Vologda/Russia.  Depending on how much German army is left in Eastern poland and Baltic States, it is really hard to take back Eastern Poland and Baltic on R1 unless you got some good dice on G1.    If the Russians counter in those two territories, and win, than it is easy to wipe them out on G2.  If the russian forces move to Belarus and I have a chance to take them out I will every time even if it means losing some tanks and an airplane or two.

    Someone mentioned a tactic of attacking as Russia to take out some of the forces in those two fronts and then retreating to Belarus.  That could be a beneficial move as there would be no ability to counter attack for Germany.  Of course you are banking on another factor of luck when it comes to the dice:)

    BJCard -

    Wasn’t trying to be a smart ass, just saying that with a dedicated G1 I don’t believe there is anything you can do.  I like the ideas of Russia giving up the capital if they have a chance to get south and help there.  I haven’t seen the opportunity for that in our games but will pay more attention next time. Â



  • @variance:

    Stalingradski, what do you think of UK taking both Persia and Iraq on UK1 and building an IC in IRAQ UK2?

    Hey Vance  😄

    I think if you can pull it off, it’s worth it - at the very least Iraq. I’ve been placing my bid in Transjordan lately to make it easier. An Iraqi IC on U2 is fantastic - almost no delay getting troops to help Egypt and eventually to plug Caucasus/NW Persia.

    I secretly would love to figure out how to hold off on activating Persia for 5 turns, until a US transport can get there…  🙂  Mostly a pipe dream, but imagine the US economy projected right to the middle of the board? Man.

    We should play again some time!



  • @elevenjerk:

    Splitting armies is typically a no-no

    This is 100% true except that with a well executed G1 the North Armies have no choice but to retreat to Archangel/Vologda/Russia. � Depending on how much German army is left in Eastern poland and Baltic States, it is really hard to take back Eastern Poland and Baltic on R1 unless you got some good dice on G1. �  � If the Russians counter in those two territories, and win, than it is easy to wipe them out on G2. � If the russian forces move to Belarus and I have a chance to take them out I will every time even if it means losing some tanks and an airplane or two.

    Someone mentioned a tactic of attacking as Russia to take out some of the forces in those two fronts and then retreating to Belarus. � That could be a beneficial move as there would be no ability to counter attack for Germany. � Of course you are banking on another factor of luck when it comes to the dice:)

    BJCard -

    Wasn’t trying to be a smart ass, just saying that with a dedicated G1 I don’t believe there is anything you can do. � I like the ideas of Russia giving up the capital if they have a chance to get south and help there. � I haven’t seen the opportunity for that in our games but will pay more attention next time. �

    Very true elvenjerk - at the beginning of things you have no choice. In general what I’m talking about is the mistake some newer players make of trying to maintain a northern and southern Russian army… it’s a cool concept, but it’s easy to isolate and kill one of them… and then Russia is most certainly doomed.


  • '12

    If the question is really what can RUSSIA do, then the flip answer really is nothing.  The very short summary of what has already been said before is that you pretty much just have to retreat in a manner that doesn’t allow too many of your men to get wiped out too soon.

    The real question is what can the Allies do by turn 6 that will cause the German player to slow down the amount of reinforcements they send to their Russian stack so that the Russians can keep pace with it.  I agree with Stalingradski that the Mid East holds more promise than going into France.  It’s always extremely tempting to try and shuck somebody up from Gibraltar into Normandy or Norway, but these areas are just too close to the Axis production areas to stage a safe, early invasion.  Every territory in Western Europe (basically) has an IC of some kind in it, so no matter how empty it was when you landed, it can instantly fill up with troops exactly when needed.  I’ve had a lot of opponents trying out the Don't capture Normandy strategy, which gives me a chuckle, since Normandy is almost never relevant.  The Axis are just denying themselves income and the ability to instantly drop a blocker DD into the English Channel to stop a sudden play up to the W. Germany - Norway belt.

    If you are focusing your efforts in the Mid East, then Italy is getting contained, you are sure to be holding Cairo so that the game doesn’t end right away with the loss of Moscow, and you have a place to be building up troops on the mainland that Germany has no easy access to.  You can then make a stand in the Caucasus as need be (as already said) or even help India if you have to.

    Something I’m still questioning is where to go exactly if you decide you want to pull out of Moscow.  The map layout doesn’t favor getting from Moscow to Caucasus ahead of a German stack.  I don’t think Russia has any way to get to the Mid East without being attacked and wiped out long before they can arrive.  In that case I’m wondering if it better to head right for China or India.



  • I’m talking about is the mistake some newer players make of trying to maintain a northern and southern Russian army… it’s a cool concept, but it’s easy to isolate and kill one of them… and then Russia is most certainly doomed.

    Agreed.  Whenever possible you have to combine troops and slow the main territories with bryansk being the most important IMO.

    The map layout doesn’t favor getting from Moscow to Caucasus ahead of a German stack.  I don’t think Russia has any way to get to the Mid East without being attacked and wiped out long before they can arrive.

    Thats what I thought when I first read that but they can get away if germany is in bryansk.  Move to Samara, Germany can only hit them with tanks and airplanes if Italy can opens.  No can opener means they can’t get to you.  Next turn move to Kazakhstan where germany still can’t reach you cause they will be in Tambov or Rostov.  Next move they can join up with UK/US forces in Caucausus.  Could work really well.  Would have to see it played out.


  • 2017 2016 2015 '14 '12

    Stalingradski, I’d love to lose to you again sometime.  🙂  A British transport next to South Africa is a nice bid for the Iraq thing and it allows you to use the the one next to Egypt to get the Malta units to Egypt.

    Eggman, in a G1 scenario the Russians may pull out to Samara R5 just as the Siberians get to Novosibersk.  They can merge in Kazakhstan R6, then meet up with the British in Caucasus.  The nice part about that is the Germans have 2 important territories to defend (Rostov and Volgograd) and 1 to attack (Caucasus), but the UK/Russian force has only 1 to defend and 2 to attack.



  • @variance:

    Stalingradski, I’d love to lose to you again sometime.  🙂  A British transport next to South Africa is a nice bid for the Iraq thing and it allows you to use the the one next to Egypt to get the Malta units to Egypt.

    Eggman, in a G1 scenario the Russians may pull out to Samara R5 just as the Siberians get to Novosibersk.  They can merge in Kazakhstan R6, then meet up with the British in Caucasus.  The nice part about that is the Germans have 2 important territories to defend (Rostov and Volgograd) and 1 to attack (Caucasus), but the UK/Russian force has only 1 to defend and 2 to attack.

    You empty Malta?  Where does the British air land after Taranto?  On the carrier?  That is certain death.  Or do you not Taranto?


  • '12

    @elevenjerk:

    Thats what I thought when I first read that but they can get away if germany is in bryansk.  Move to Samara, Germany can only hit them with tanks and airplanes if Italy can opens.  No can opener means they can’t get to you.  Next turn move to Kazakhstan where germany still can’t reach you cause they will be in Tambov or Rostov.  Next move they can join up with UK/US forces in Caucausus.  Could work really well.  Would have to see it played out.

    @variance:

    Eggman, in a G1 scenario the Russians may pull out to Samara R5 just as the Siberians get to Novosibersk.  They can merge in Kazakhstan R6, then meet up with the British in Caucasus.  The nice part about that is the Germans have 2 important territories to defend (Rostov and Volgograd) and 1 to attack (Caucasus), but the UK/Russian force has only 1 to defend and 2 to attack.

    The problem I’ve been seeing with this, is that once Russia pulls out of Moscow, then Germany can send its mobile units down on the direct route to Caucasus and head them off at the pass, as it were, with its chain of Mech Infantry reinforcements redirecting themselves to head south as well.  Send in 1 Infantry to capture Moscow and leave the rest of your 1-move guys adjacent to Moscow in case Russia moves back in.  If they do, some or all of your 2-move units might still be in range to get back.  If the Allies didn’t stack the Middle East then you don’t need to send down more in that direction than you can bring up every turn.

    Depends a lot though on the exact composition of forces on each side.



  • Yea, the other problem is that it allows germany to build as many as 20 tanks to meet in Caucasus along with the already pressumably destructive force they had set to go into Russia.  In the end it boils down to my first response, slow them down as much as possible and say your prayers in Russian:)



  • Ok, so you know the Axis are going to squeeze Russia.  The UK could do a Mid East strat as many have discussed.

    What about the US?  Heavy Pacific?


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