Long range aircraft - why bother?



  • Really, what’s the point of long range aircraft technology? 1 more space of movement doesn’t do much, since you can still only go 2 (for fighter/tactical bombers) or 3 (for strategic bombers) spaces away from the starting point. The only situation where it could possibly be useful is when the landing territory is different from the launching territory.

    Same goes for an airbase. It’s actually far less useful then airbases from A&A: Pacific, and costs a small fortune as well. You’re still limited to sea zone next to one the island is in / other territories bordering the same sea zone. How often does the extra point of movement come up?

    20+ IPC’s for research, and 15 IPC’s per territory, for what you could do in Pacific for free. Why bother.



  • I agree that the long range aircraft technology is not that great (though it does have its uses, I would much rather get, say heavy bombers).

    Airbases though, are very useful. An airbase on Gibraltar can make it an extremely potent British fortress that is almost impossible for Italy to take, and it allows the UK to attack any ships that Italy sends against Egypt (unless Italy can take Syria, Trans-Jordan, Egypt and Alexandria all at once).

    A Japanese airbase in Kwangsi allows the whole Japanese airforce (if stationed there) to hit anywhere in China, Calcutta, and hit the Japan sea zone (SZ 6) if the USA player comes in there. This is a huge strategic advantage for Japan. I build this airbase almost every single time I play Japan.

    And those are just two of the most commonly built airbases.

    Even the existing airbases have their uses, like strategic bombers in Western USA being able to hit SZ 6 and land in, say an allied controlled Korea (often times Russia will grab it, or a USA amphibious assault will), making life more difficult for Japan. Or strategic bombers based in Southern Italy being able to hit either Moscow or London.
    Again, just some of the more common uses.



  • Ok, now I really don’t get the usefulness of airbases. In Kwangsi, you can hit most of the Japanese inner defensive perimeter, but that’s dependent on holding the islands in the sea zones at the far end. From Gibraltar, you can certainly hit the eastern Med off Egypt. The problem is that it’s a one-shot deal - you can’t get them back. From Egypt, you can make it to Malta, but if you’ve lost it, a 2-turn circuit of Africa is the only way back.

    And I guess what makes Gibraltar impenetrable is the ability to scramble fighters to help in the defense of the sea zone in conjunction with the surface fleet? Assuming there’s a surface fleet there? And ensuring that the Italians have to bring the navy, and don’t get to bombard? That seems somewhat powerful, but is it really worth 15 IPC’s? (compared to 4-5 infantry?)

    I guess I need an article explaining the strategy behind airbases.



  • Yeah, for Gibraltar, turn 1 with UK, put the whole fleet in SZ 92, build the airbase there, and fly your fighters down to Gibraltar. It basically makes it almost impossible for Italy to get control of the Mediterranean, because they will probably never be able to build enough of a fleet to overcome the UK fleet + the 3 scrambling fighters. They can either keep their fleet in port (if they want to keep it alive), or suicide it in an effort to get Egypt, which, if you play the UK right, will be impossible for them to hold very long. If you have to fly the planes out to kill the Italian fleet, then getting them back doesn’t matter as much, as they will have already achieved their objective. Yes, it’s expensive, but it’s very valuable in containing Italy. It’s certainly not the only way to achieve that though, and may not even be the best way.

    In Kwangsi, it allows you to move the Japanese fleet south to take control of the money islands without leaving your SZ 6 undefended, and puts a ton of pressure on China & India. It makes it possible to do a turn 3 India crush if you want. It basically keeps the allied fleet far away if they want to keep it alive.



  • Early in the game,

    even one +1 movement for aircraft makes a world of difference.
    For example, Japanese aircraft being able to reach Calcutta, or NOT being able to do so.

    You might argue that 1 turn later you’d be able to do so anyway, but that is a turn later so you will have lost 1 ‘tempo’ as I’d like to call it.

    Later in the game, longer aircraft ranges are particularly strong for the allies when they are conducting their destructive SBR’s over any and all German + Italian ICs, ABs and/or NBs while at the same time being able to land almost anywhere they please…
    Usually this can be done without the long range technology (Paris is an extremely strong allied airbase, followed by Norway, Normandy and/or Southern France -no need to build an AB in any of those places, but you can if you like), but imagine Germany can prevent the allies from liberating France/Norway…

    TBH I consider all tech too weak for the cost (not just long range aircraft) to even consider rolling for it…
    If whatever Major Power rolls tech dice (with average luck) it spends 30 bucks for 1 success (and you cannot even tell if this breakthrough is going to be useful for it) and its direct enemies just spend 30 bucks on buying units, those units are always a better buy than any 1 tech…



  • +1 movement to aircraft, from one or both sources, is a HUGE boon! HUGE Jerry, HUGE!


  • Customizer

    Guys,

    @P-Unit:

    +1 movement to aircraft, from one or both sources, is a HUGE boon! HUGE Jerry, HUGE!

    ––I agree,…this is a HUGE improvement, especially when added to an AirBase range increase.
    ----However,…In our “normal” G-40 games my gang of players prefer to play WITHOUT research & developement rules as we like a more level playing field so that our games are more about matching each player’s wits/strategies against the others.

    “Tall Paul”



  • If you have long range aircraft and your aircraft are in a territory with an airbase, they get +2 range which is very useful.


  • 2020 2018 2017 '15

    Certain technologies will be good or not based upon playing style.  Long range aircraft is awesome so long as you have planes to utilize them. 
    “1 more space of movement doesn’t do much, “
    It’s two extra movement

    “since you can still only go 2 (for fighter/tactical bombers) or 3 (for strategic bombers) spaces away from the starting point.”
    And this is why you aren’t utilizing your planes to their maximum efficiency.  Why do you have to land at the same spot from which you launched?  You don’t have to!

    “The only situation where it could possibly be useful is when the landing territory is different from the launching territory.”
    Exactly.

    I’m not sure how often you play, but this situation occurs for me in every game.  It is a vital part of maximizing every aspect of your units to their greatest efficiency in order to win.  If you haven’t had to do that to win, you’re playing lackluster players.
    So what does a Strategic bomber with a movement of 8 get you? 
    It’s a US bomber to Moscow in 2 turns.
    It’s a UK bomber to Moscow in 1 turn.
    It’s a German bomber flying from Paris to Moscow for that final attack, landing in Bryansk, while the whole time threaten most of the Atlantic sea zones.
    It’s a Japanese bomber from Manchuria attacking Mosocow or India and landing adjacently.
    It’s projecting the threat of a bomber attack to a much greater extent, ensuring transports need expensive protection or possibly forgotten about and lost.
    I do not know what to really tell you.  It’s not extra fire power, like a higher rolling jet upgrade or heavy bombers, but it is MORE firepower in a  fight, as you’ll be able to reach more battles in a shorter amount of time.

    “Same goes for an airbase. It’s actually far less useful then airbases from A&A: Pacific, and costs a small fortune as well. You’re still limited to sea zone next to one the island is in / other territories bordering the same sea zone. How often does the extra point of movement come up?”
    That extra movement is critical for many strategies, particularly in the Pacific.  I cannot think of a single game in the last 30 I’ve played as the Axis where I DID NOT buy an Airbase in the game; they are that essential.

    Many of the “India Crush” moves, where Japan takes India round 3 or 4 involve an airbase.  Leaving their base in French Indo China or Kwangsi, attacking India, and landing in Yunnan or Shan State.
    To not buy the AB means you have to wait an additional turn to get your less mobile planes in range.  By which time you’ve given India another round of infantry purchases, tipping the battle in their favor and out of your reach.
    The extra movement comes up about once a game, where I can catch an unsuspecting player.  They don’t consider the ABs and I bring more firepower to a battle than they thought possible.  I win, they’ve sacrificed a large fleet.
    On several occasions I have flown fighters/tacs five spaces out to attack, so that they can land on carriers that maximized their movement via naval bases and moved three sea zones.  Not possible without air bases.

    Air bases also give you the ability to scramble, which is quite the advantage.  It ensures they have to consider protection when amphibing (just transports no longer work), and three additional fighters has been enough to tip the odds in my favor, preventing an attack.

    “So why not just build a carrier then? 16 ICs vs 15 for the base?”
    At times your opponent may have gone sub-heavy on the purchasing, making a carrier purchase foolhardy if you don’t have the needed destroyers to protect it.
    All airbase buys are situational, but very useful when used. 
    If you buy an airbase for Normandy and don’t yet have Gibraltar, you can attack/counter attack any Allied ships around Gibraltar and land in the SZ next to Normandy on newly purchased carriers.  Highly situational, but it’s something that your opponent must always consider.  I’ve done this one myself, and such moments can be game-changers.  The annihilation of the US Atlantic fleet is big.  It wouldn’t have been possible without an airbase.

    “And ensuring that the Italians have to bring the navy, and don’t get to bombard? That seems somewhat powerful, but is it really worth 15 IPC’s? (compared to 4-5 infantry?)”
    Question:  How do you get those 4-5 infantry to Gibraltar?  Especially if Germany destroys the UK fleet G1?  How many turns is that?  1 buy units, 2 transport to Gib (assuming you still HAVE transports, also weakening London and helping any Sealion chances).  An airbase is an instant buy, and fighters can land there on turn 1 if you so chose.


  • TripleA

    LRA is way better than an airbase dependency.

    LRA is also good for sinking Japan and taking islands without the possibility of Japan reclaiming it. Since it is much easier to sink Japan than it is to defend against THE FULL MIGHT OF JAPAN’S NAVAL AND AIR.

    Tech is generally something I go for later in the game, to end the game.



  • For tech in general i feel that the majority of techs are not worth the money you end up spending to try and get them and i am just thankful when i end up getting any tech from my special dice. One improvement i could see is if long range aircraft saw all carriers treated as airbases or something else other than just traveling an extra space 😛

    in regards to air bases and in a way naval bases too is that they are dandy, but not worth the money (especially since minor IC’s are even cheaper). If you need any extra move or scrambling bonus, aircraft carrier can get you roughly the same result as an airbase for 1 ipc more. Naval bases are almost never used and provide even less incentive to buy. Quick fix could possibly be switching up costs so naval/air bases are 12 ipc’s and minors 15 ipc’s or just having all be 12 ipc’s



  • I agree that naval bases are purchased less often than air bases, but I probably buy one about every third game. When playing Japan, and you have just taken India and have your fleet sitting in SZ 39, you can ruin the allied player’s day by building a naval base in Kwangsi or Hainan and getting back to Japan 1 round earlier. Sometimes when playing the allies, I’ll buy one in Norway after capturing it. When you need one, you need one and they are worth every penny.


Log in to reply
 

Suggested Topics

I Will Never Grow Up Games
Axis & Allies Boardgaming Custom Painted Miniatures
Dean's Army Guys

45
Online

13.9k
Users

34.2k
Topics

1.3m
Posts