To Taranto, or not to Taranto



  • This has always been a strategy debated since the Alpha projects, and I’m curious to hear opinions on the topic now that a lot of round one strategies have been heavily tested.


  • Customizer

    It really depends on if Germany looks like they are going after London or straight after Russia. If Germany is clearly going after Russia, you can use planes from England to help in the Taranto raid.
    While I don’t usually care for the Taranto raid because you usually lose the Med fleet, it is a good way to really cripple the Italian fleet and set back their aspirations in the Med. Leaving Italy that battleship, cruiser and 2nd transport can mean a lot of trouble for the Allies.



  • I am not a big proponent of Taranto, as I appreciate neither the vacuum it creates nor the RAF casualties I must sustain. However, if the germans haven’t even lent a single fighter to support the italians, I can rarely resist. Likelyhood of Sealion has little effect on my decision, as I generally must withdraw the shattered royal navy to canada or the med for the first few turns either way, until i can reinforce it. Mostly I just do it when i dont feel like having fun with a combined british fleet in the indian.



  • IMHO, Taranto is a must every game. Most Allied players get at least +6 IPC’s bid every game, which is an extra Brit Sub in SZ98. That eliminates the need to bring both Brit fighters from the UK.



  • I really wanted to vote for 2 options, but alas only 1 allowed ;-).
    For me, it depends on GE1 actions and how I know my German opponent (is he strong, experienced at Sea Lion and so on). Apart from that, destroying the Italian fleet UK2, or even being patient untill its fleet sails out to accomplish something is also something I like to do. Italy’s navy can usually sortie only once, because it will be leaving its aircover by doing so.


  • Customizer

    @ItIsILeClerc:

    I really wanted to vote for 2 options, but alas only 1 allowed ;-).
    For me, it depends on GE1 actions and how I know my German opponent (is he strong, experienced at Sea Lion and so on). Apart from that, destroying the Italian fleet UK2, or even being patient untill its fleet sails out to accomplish something is also something I like to do. Italy’s navy can usually sortie only once, because it will be leaving its aircover by doing so.

    Great point. I have found it is usually much better for UK to let the Italian fleet start moving around then pounce on them round 2 or 3. Even then it is really hard for Italy to rebuild any navy.


  • '14 Customizer

    I personally like to destroy it because it really sets Italy back some.  It first eliminates all but one of their transports and then it convoy’s their sea zone with whatever ships you have left over from the attack.  This really hurts Italy and they can be looking at less than 10 IPCs next round.

    Commando Brado - This is the exact reason why I dislike the bid system even when I’m playing UK.

    ItIsILeClerc  - As much as I like to destroy those ships on round 1 it makes the most sense to wait until Italy uses the navy and is not under fighter cover.  The first time I used your strategy to preserve those ships I was so worried about Italy that I rushed and attacked them on round 2 and destroyed it but took heavy losses from UK. The second game I played with the strategy and I did not attack Italy’s navy but instead used it to setup a trap in Gibraltar while waiting for the US and other UK ships to join the combined fleet in SZ 91.



  • @Commando:

    IMHO, Taranto is a must every game. Most Allied players get at least +6 IPC’s bid every game, which is an extra Brit Sub in SZ98. That eliminates the need to bring both Brit fighters from the UK.

    This is the correct call here.  Taranto is standard with the bid.  There are other options (Tobruk gambit and Med evac for example) but this is really the best against stronger players…it helps out the Allies in the longrun.



  • @questioneer:

    @Commando:

    IMHO, Taranto is a must every game. Most Allied players get at least +6 IPC’s bid every game, which is an extra Brit Sub in SZ98. That eliminates the need to bring both Brit fighters from the UK.

    This is the correct call here. Taranto is standard with the bid. There are other options (Tobruk gambit and Med evac for example) but this is really the best against stronger players…it helps out the Allies in the longrun.

    In our table top group we never play with a bid, However, we have house ruled the setup by placing a single Brit fighter in Ontario. Regardless, we have been attacking #97 without an extra sub in the Med and even before we added the extra fighter. We use a fighter and bomber from London and although it is a large investment to be sure, the most convincing reason we have for always doing Taranto is the expression of joy on the Italian player’s face when we don’t. I am curious about what happens during G1 that would prevent some of you from attempting this strategy.



  • What would the extra fighter(s) from London hit?  I’m not sure what they would be able to reach in the Med that’s within 5 spaces of London…


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13 Moderator

    Taranto every time.
    I feel anxious if I leave it undone. Anxious Italy will become a monster with the beginnings of a fleet and starting with two Transports, not one.


  • '14 Customizer

    The fighters from London can reach but have to land on the CV so you can only send 2 plus the bomber but most only send 1 fighter and bomber like YoungGrasshopper posted above.



  • @Young:

    I am curious about what happens during G1 that would prevent some of you from attempting this strategy.

    One reason has already been posted: If Germany is looking Sea Lion heavy. Perhaps a no-brainer but still.
    2nd reason would be for me: If I have a German opponent that is known for throwing a surprise Sea Lion and I cannot make sure that Germany takes London with <16 survivors.



  • @ItIsILeClerc:

    @Young:

    I am curious about what happens during G1 that would prevent some of you from attempting this strategy.

    One reason has already been posted: If Germany is looking Sea Lion heavy. Perhaps a no-brainer but still.
    2nd reason would be for me: If I have a German opponent that is known for throwing a surprise Sea Lion and I cannot make sure that Germany takes London with <16 survivors.

    By that logic, any Sealion fake on G1 should save the Italian battleship, Cruiser, and Transport on UK1. I’m reluctant to turn away from Taranto based on a sealion attack that may never come (no mater how strong it looks after G1). I have to agree with Wittmann at this point… Taranto every time.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Do it unless Germany saves at least 21+ IPC or buys CV and 2 AP.



  • I checked “Depends on what happened G1”.

    This would include:

    **If the Luftwaffe took a hit or not.

    **Is the Kriegsmarine in tact (did they lose the BB, or purchase any ships)

    **Is the German navy a better target?

    **How much of the RN survived (sz91 UK cruiser alive?)

    **Did the UK scramble, and lose some planes?

    With that said, we see a UK1 Taranto in most games. UK cripples the Italian navy, but is subject to a pretty lethal counter attack by one of the Euro Axis, so the UK Med fleet will go down. This slug fest costs both sides a lot of valuable expensive units.

    I’m starting to like the wait and see if with enough rope Italy can hang itself approach. They have to leave port sometime……

    BTW, about the bid for the allies.  This game is pretty balanced IMO, and as others have pointed out a patient allied team can win w/o a bid. Games won by the allies tend to be much longer 15+ rounds (barring bad dice, or horrible axis play). The allies shouldn’t have the option of placing a unit at set-up that can be used right away for the purpose of changing the odds or out come of a major battle. The set-up is how it is so that there are consequences for certain battles. Giving the UK a sub in the Med at set-up just so they can sink the Italian fleet easier, and with less risk to the RAF just seems wrong IMO.

    If one was to use a bid for the allies, I would think that the unit placed shouldn’t effect the first round of play. The fighter in Canada would be much more acceptable to me if a bid was to be used.



  • I chose always. But I’d have chosen something like ‘almost always’ or ‘most of the time’ if it was up there.

    Even in tabletop (no bid) games or games where I put a fighter in say Scotland, I almost always go after the Italian fleet. And I’ll land all air in Malta afterwards to save that much of the Brit units. I really don’t care about losing the British fleet as long as the Italian fleet is nuked first. UK can lock down Egypt and the ME without a fleet. Whereas Italy needs a fleet if it has any hope of contesting the Brits in said locations.

    Neutralize Italy as a presence in the med and you’ll go a long way towards winning in Europe. Let Italy get into the 30-40 IPC range for a couple of turns and the allies will have problems. I don’t mind a SL threat that much, depending on Pacific situation. Even if Germany goes SL, Russia will become a beast and US will eventually pry London away from Berlin. I want Africa and the ME secured first thing as the allies because it gives the allies a really strong choke point/fallback position if/when Moscow goes down. I can’t count how many times British factories in the ME or Egypt have stalled the German army short of victory.



  • @Imperious:

    Do it unless Germany saves at least 21+ IPC or buys CV and 2 AP.

    OK, so Germany buys an aircraft carrier and 2 transports, apparently forcing the UK to ground all their fighters in London. So what are the Med boats suppose to do now that they have lost their offensive initiative? they’re now on the defense against a strong Italian presence and a bored German air force that can reach many spaces in and around the Med during G2. There may never be a better opportunity to paralyze the Italian war effort than there is during UK1, and what about Sealion? I personally prefer the Germans to expend their resources with transports and attempt Sealion, much better for the Allies than an advance on Moscow. At least London has a chance of being liberated by the Americans where Moscow is almost impossible to support, and what about Russia? while London is being attacked, Russia is building tons of protection and now they’re in the war collecting NO$$. All I’m saying is, send one fighter, and one bomber to SZ#97 and deal with Sealion afterwards. Besides, the UK should be taking out SZ#97 especially if Germany is threatening Sealion, how else will they deal with a strong Italy after they lose their capital? best to weaken them early IMO.



  • @Young:

    Besides, the UK should be taking out SZ#97 especially if Germany is threatening Sealion, how else will they deal with a strong Italy after they lose their capital? best to weaken them early IMO.

    Quite right. Besides if Germany’s really going to go SL, they can’t afford to lose too many(any) aircraft which cuts down on their odds of hitting any leftover Brits in sz97 which they would only be able to do with air.



  • So far it just remains a matter of preference. There doesn’t seem to be a particularly wrong approach in what I have read so far. All strategies lead to exploitable situations by the allies, IF they pay attention…

    For example, personally I like to secure London (I can make it 100% secure If I want) and deal with the Italians after Germany backed off. Ultimatly attacking Italy UK2, or defeating Germany over London/the Atlantic if it persists (not to mention what Russia will do when left unchecked so seriously).
    Others rather cripple Italy UK1 at the cost of London, which is also a good strategy because Germany will be stuck in Western Europe, the USA will liberate London (or do KJF) and Russia starts preying on eastern Europe. Only concern here should be not to have too much German ARM in London so that Liberation wouldn’t even be possible even if the USA wanted to. That’s just too much comfort for Germany and it can be achieved by getting a total of ~16 German units into London…



  • If Germany’s putting that much into London, then as US I would just put a couple subs into sz109 and ensure that Germany can’t get those troops back to the mainland. With all those troops in London, Germany’s probably weak somewhere else, so just strand those forces and make sure Germany doesn’t collect much (any) from London/Scotland. Cut out the middle man and land into France and/or Norway.

    Germany simply can’t be strong everywhere. If they’re too strong in London for US to liberate it, than they should be weak enough to land in Normandy and start building up there. If Germany’s too strong in London and France, then Russia’s probably making hay on the Eastern front. If this is not the case, then the allies probably messed up somewhere earlier in the game or got really diced somewhere.


  • Customizer

    @axisandalliesplayer:

    If Germany’s putting that much into London, then as US I would just put a couple subs into sz109 and ensure that Germany can’t get those troops back to the mainland. With all those troops in London, Germany’s probably weak somewhere else, so just strand those forces and make sure Germany doesn’t collect much (any) from London/Scotland. Cut out the middle man and land into France and/or Norway.

    Germany simply can’t be strong everywhere. If they’re too strong in London for US to liberate it, than they should be weak enough to land in Normandy and start building up there. If Germany’s too strong in London and France, then Russia’s probably making hay on the Eastern front. If this is not the case, then the allies probably messed up somewhere earlier in the game or got really diced somewhere.

    You are right on target here. In a game we played a while back, Germany took London with a good amount left over. I don’t remember exactly but it was something like 6 tanks, a couple of infantry and artillery. The US managed to take out the German fleet and sank all those transports. So all that German armor was stuck on England. Meanwhile, the US took out Italy and Berlin got squeezed out of existence between the US and Russia. The Allies won with London never being liberated.


  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @Young:

    @Imperious:

    Do it unless Germany saves at least 21+ IPC or buys CV and 2 AP.

    OK, so Germany buys an aircraft carrier and 2 transports, apparently forcing the UK to ground all their fighters in London. So what are the Med boats suppose to do now that they have lost their offensive initiative? they’re now on the defense against a strong Italian presence and a bored German air force that can reach many spaces in and around the Med during G2. There may never be a better opportunity to paralyze the Italian war effort than there is during UK1, and what about Sealion? I personally prefer the Germans to expend their resources with transports and attempt Sealion, much better for the Allies than an advance on Moscow. At least London has a chance of being liberated by the Americans where Moscow is almost impossible to support, and what about Russia? while London is being attacked, Russia is building tons of protection and now they’re in the war collecting NO$$. All I’m saying is, send one fighter, and one bomber to SZ#97 and deal with Sealion afterwards. Besides, the UK should be taking out SZ#97 especially if Germany is threatening Sealion, how else will they deal with a strong Italy after they lose their capital? best to weaken them early IMO.

    It’s best to avoid it if Germany makes those buys. Otherwise, you have a choice which typically is to make the attack, but you still have options. I prefer that Germany makes the 1cv,2ap build as an active threat and shuck to Finland 6 land pieces till they ready to attack USSR.



  • Loosing London does by no means mean the end of the world for the allies.
    But allowing Germany to get in with ~18 survivors is just silly. This would still not mean the end of the world but sets back the clear early advantage the allies can get from a laughable SL into an ‘equal challenge for both sides again’. In short, Germany should still be strong enough to defend against the USA and Russia for a while and wait for the Japanese to force the USA into the Pacific. On the other hand, if the USA went KJF from the start it is already an ‘equal challenge for both sides again’. Equal challenge as in similar to the game’s set-up where neither side could have gained an advantage by strategy.

    Having said all this, ‘Taranto’ can still be done UK1 without the risk of loosing London with too many German survivors inside and if the UK and USA can effectively coordinate the quick liberation afterwards, the allied victory is set. SL & the surprise SL-variant are simply too dependent on opportunity. Which does not mean it should not be monitored closely by Germany (and taken when it arises) and thus be treaded with a little caution by the UK. After all, why trade  away an early and clear allied victory for a more equal situation?!



  • I think that the important thing to remember about this thread’s poll is, out of 20 votes so far… none has said that they never attempt Taranto. That means that out of 20 experienced players, all have attempted the Taranto raid of sea zone #97, and it’s highly possible that they would attempt it again during future games. By that definition, I assume that it is safe to say that the Taranto raid in A&A 1940 Global is a very “standard” strategy for experienced players. The first time I saw the attack was when I played Gargantua, axisplaya, Vance, and suprise attack during the FMGC 2 years ago, and not only have I been using it ever since… I haven’t seen any reason to stop.


Log in to reply
 

20th Anniversary Give Away

In January 2000 this site came to life and now we're celebrating our 20th Anniversary with a prize giveaway of 30+ prizes. See this link for the list of prizes and winners.
Axis & Allies Boardgaming Custom Painted Miniatures
Dean's Army Guys
T-shirts, Hats, and More

Suggested Topics

  • 21
  • 46
  • 27
  • 4
  • 54
  • 50
  • 11
  • 6
I Will Never Grow Up Games
Axis & Allies Boardgaming Custom Painted Miniatures
Dean's Army Guys

53
Online

14.8k
Users

35.5k
Topics

1.4m
Posts