Garg's Notes: Russian Defence Doctrine


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    In downloading a lot of PBF games, and watching Russian play… I see a lot of retreat/full-turtle tactics that lead to Russian demise too often.

    If you want your Russian defence to act like it has BALLS! and stop Shting it’s pants everytime the Germans roll in, then Give them hope!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=381Di8Cw0-I

    Nothing is Certain in G40 for Russian, it’s a different game every time. � So I’ve put together a series of quick notes on Russian defence for everyone to peruse over, comment, and hopefully build better a better Russian game for themselves out of.

    ***** DOW Japan R1, there is no reason not to.

    ***** Send the Far East Troops home (Unless you have a specific/coordinated plan as why not to). America can do a better job of keeping the Far East Russian, than Russia, and you need those forces at home.

    ***** Time is your ally, buy it anywhere/anyway you can
    -A. IF you are able to hold the Germans from Moscow, by R6 and R7 you will receive the far east Reinforcements at your capital.
    -B. That means if you can stall the German Eastward advance for 1 or 2 turns you should have a capital defence edge in time.
    -C. This also means you are buying time for your allies like Britain and USA, to SAVE YOUR AS$ with air support.

    ***** Scotland is a direct 5 space flight to Leningrad

    ***** Persia is a direct 4 space flight to Moscow, Egypt and India and is a critical territory

    ***** Germanys strongest weapon against Russia, is Italian mobile ground units, and support planes that poke open holes Kill them anywhere, anytime they are exposed, even/often if there are risks or costs involved

    ***** Always know what German planes are in range of your stack(s) this is the most common failing that sees players lose their edge against Germany

    ***** Get atleast 1 French, and 1 ANZAC fighter to Moscow. This can be done easily, with the only complication being a J1 assault, stopping ANZAC

    ***** Get ANZAC and French ground units from Africa, up and towards RUSSIA as soon as possible. In several games, these units are the pieces that have stopped the Italian canopener, that otherwise would have broken Russia

    ***** Russia has space - Use it. Germany will have one stack generally. Force it to work for the objectives. MAKE the Stack move north, or south, by keeping it in relative check with your own stack

    ***** Take factories back, even if it’s at a small loss, to prevent German Production in Russia

    ***** Force the issue at Leningrad Early, send all units there. Build 3 art first turn, a mix of inf and art in Ukr, and all mech in Moscow. This will give you a defending front early, and force Germany
    north.

    ***** The germans will out number you at Leningrad early, you can abandon Leningrad, but keep it in check with your stack in Belarus, this forces the Germans to Lose a turn of advance if they send the stack to Karelia, or lose a turn of advance if they sit tight. Because if they send the stack into your stack - which has been reinforced with troops from Moscow and Bryansk, odds should still be in your favour generally.

    ***** Do not leave units in Karelia of Vologda, they will not be able to escape the collapsing Leningrad Pocket in enough time to survive

    ***** If the Germans leave medium to small stacks exposed, counter attack them with enough force to either win handidly, or strafe and return to your main stack whilst causing more damage

    ***** Don’t be afraid to attack if you can bleed german unit count

    ***** Always spread out your navy, using your cruiser to block amphibious assaults, and your sub to be a nuisance in the Baltic. Make Germany work to clean up this mess

    ***** Don’t JUST build infantry. Build some mech early, to get them to the front in time, and build some artillery when you are in control of your factories, to keep the german advance on edge.

    ***** When you start getting planes into Russia, try to keep your numbers equal or better with the Gerries

    ***** Be aware that on any given turn, Germany can build all planes/bombers and likely be able to hit your capital on the subsequent turn.

    ***** If your factories get bombed, consider giving them as is to Germany, as opposed to repairing them to build units. Nothing like Germany risking it’s bombers, to cause damage it has to repair itself

    ***** If you lose your capital it isn’t the end

    ***** Consider abandoning your capital if you can’t hold it, but can take it back without Germany being able to do so.

    More to come, but have to go. Please add your own comments!



  • Great job, thanks for that Gargantua, I never turtle with Russia, but your notes will help me be more effective especially with our production house rules that favor Russia a tiny bit.


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

    Thanks for your time to post this easy help guide.



  • Nothing but praise here. These are simple and concrete actions that any Russian player can perform. Well said.


  • 2019 2018 2017 '16

    Awesome post Gargantua and thanks for spending the time.
    This will help a lot of triple a Players (including me) to improve their game.
    Thank you Gargantua.



  • Great effort, this! Like it very much! Thanks for that.

    A few questions below though:

    @Gargantua:

    ***** Germanys strongest weapon against Russia, is Italian mobile ground units, and support planes that poke open holes Kill them anywhere, anytime they are exposed, even/often if there are risks or costs involved

    While I wholeheartedly agree on this, I want to ask a little elaboration on this one. As part of ‘killing Italians’, do you also consider (out of personal experience) putting enough Russian blockers in the way to make it impossible for Italy to win that can-opening attack? Because an easy Axis answer would be for Italy not to attack and let Germany do it. Germany can make that a painful loss of units for Russia. Italy usually never exposes its units for destruction by Russia and goes where Germany will follow. France Or ANZAC may be able to do this indeed (see my comment on the tip below).

    @Gargantua:

    ***** Get ANZAC and French ground units from Africa, up and towards RUSSIA as soon as possible. In several games, these units are the pieces that have stopped the Italian canopener, that otherwise would have broken Russia.

    I assume that’s also what the ANZAC + French FTR in Russia (minimum) are for. As France + ANZAC both move after Italy, the only thing they can do is counterattack Italian units.
    Now for the doubt I have about this: what if (happens to me as allies a lot lately) Germany + Italy pressure Egypt so much that each and every unit in Africa + the med is needed to keep it. More often than not, these units mean the difference between the fall or victory of the UK in Egypt. In the situation where Germany only focuses on Russia, loosing Egypt for 1-2 turns can be repaired by the allies but not if Germany buys a limited fleet (with at least 1 TRS) in the med. I didn’t think it possible myself at first, but Germany is capable of chanelling a few units per turn into Africa/Med and still break Russia. Positioning of the Luftwaffe is key here.

    @Gargantua:

    ***** Force the issue at Leningrad Early, send all units there. Build 3 art first turn, a mix of inf and art in Ukr, and all mech in Moscow. This will give you a defending front early, and force Germany north.

    ***** The germans will out number you at Leningrad early, you can abandon Leningrad, but keep it in check with your stack in Belarus, this forces the Germans to Lose a turn of advance if they send the stack to Karelia, or lose a turn of advance if they sit tight. Because if they send the stack into your stack - which has been reinforced with troops from Moscow and Bryansk, odds should still be in your favour generally.

    Sorry I don’t get this  Germany advancing into Karelia :?. I can see the Finns going there, eventually, but never the German ‘main stack’. On a GE3DOW for example, Germany goes like this: East Poland GE3->Belarus GE4->Bryansk GE5.
    If Russia has stacked Leningrad with enough units so Germany would loose a turn of advance attacking it, Germany should ignore Leningrad and attack Moscow GE6. With a lot of Russians in Leningrad, Moscow will be crushed into game over for the allies.
    Against this, Russia could try to stack Belarus instead, but that is a thing I have never seen to be possible because UK FTR are needed for that defense and they can’t reach the place in time. Unless perhaps, the UK flies a LOT of FTR into Persia and builds an AB on top of them the turn before Germany DOWs. Which is extremely difficult, because the UK must use the first turns of the game to place adequate defenses in London and make sure Italy cannot walk-in-the-park into Egypt.

    @Gargantua:

    ***** If your factories get bombed, consider giving them as is to Germany, as opposed to repairing them to build units. Nothing like Germany risking it’s bombers, to cause damage it has to repair itself

    Yes, if Russia is low on income, definately. I’d say just don’t accumulate IPCs in the Russian treasury so Germany can take those from you and repair the factories with it.

    Anyway, great effort and I am happy to read more from where this came from, comrad Gargantjov  😉!


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Question #1 Response:

    • Germanys strongest weapon against Russia, is Italian mobile ground units, and support planes that poke open holes Kill them anywhere, anytime they are exposed, even/often if there are risks or costs involved

    While I wholeheartedly agree on this, I want to ask a little elaboration on this one. As part of ‘killing Italians’, do you also consider (out of personal experience) putting enough Russian blockers in the way to make it impossible for Italy to win that can-opening attack? Because an easy Axis answer would be for Italy not to attack and let Germany do it. Germany can make that a painful loss of units for Russia. Italy usually never exposes its units for destruction by Russia and goes where Germany will follow. France Or ANZAC may be able to do this indeed (see my comment on the tip below).

    Blocking is a carefully managed practice, knowing when to block, and when not to, is as much a style as it is an art, and not so much an “automatic” or “systemized” event.

    Here are some general concepts I follow when it comes to leaving out Blockers

    • Is this a critical territory?  *Block it
    • How many units can he attack with?  *Block with +2 Hit Points
    • Can I counter attack it before Germany goes?  *Block with 1 unit
    • If I block it, will he force Italy to go for it, and is there a good chance I can kill 1 or 2 Italian ground units?  *Block it
    • If I don’t block it, will he blitz an Italian tank through, that I can kill on a counter. *Don’t block it.
      *If German Armor breaks through here, will that separate the armor, and allow me to counter? *Don’t  block it

    Question #2 Response:

    Quote from: Gargantua on Today at 08:36:52 am

    • Get ANZAC and French ground units from Africa, up and towards RUSSIA as soon as possible. In several games, these units are the pieces that have stopped the Italian canopener, that otherwise would have broken Russia.

    I assume that’s also what the ANZAC + French FTR in Russia (minimum) are for. As France + ANZAC both move after Italy, the only thing they can do is counterattack Italian units.
    Now for the doubt I have about this: what if (happens to me as allies a lot lately) Germany + Italy pressure Egypt so much that each and every unit in Africa + the med is needed to keep it. More often than not, these units mean the difference between the fall or victory of the UK in Egypt. In the situation where Germany only focuses on Russia, loosing Egypt for 1-2 turns can be repaired by the allies but not if Germany buys a limited fleet (with at least 1 TRS) in the med. I didn’t think it possible myself at first, but Germany is capable of chanelling a few units per turn into Africa/Med and still break Russia. Positioning of the Luftwaffe is key here.

    Generally speaking, I think the best way for the allies to fight back in Europe, is to throw every dollar possible at Italy.

    I squeeze them dry as quickly as possible, and by I2, 90% of the time, Italy typically relegated to 1 or 2 ships, and half it’s airforce, with no NO’s or forseeable future, without outright and expensive German support.

    It would be an entirely different thread to discuss this, but the general rule is
    *Kill Italians Early, Often. Even at loss if necessary

    The allies have a much easier time replacing units, than the Chitlins do.

    Question #3:

    IF you stack Leningrad Early,  You get a few options

    • Potential to stack a survivalable stack in Baltic states R2

    • the option to counter attack a Baltic states German Stack

    • a defensible escape to Belarus, meeting the units from Moscow/Bryansk

    • The option to attack/counter-attack the German force that captures Leningrad, with forces from your main stack at a gain

    • You FORCE the issue, and make Germany go north, or throw everything south, instead of getting both simultaneously and pushing 100% east

    • You have options to stay or go depending on the German thrust, and have some counterattack potential, and can atleast tie up extra german resources, like planes, being used for defense

    • If you force everything to Leningrad, and Germany occupies EPL G3, 100% of your units on the board should be able to make it to Belarus-if you have been following parts of this doctrine, like building a few Mech.  You then only need to survive in Belarus 1 Round, and chances are, the Germans will either push south, or double down and superstack Baltic states.  All options that Buy you Time.

    Question #4 Response:

    • If your factories get bombed, consider giving them as is to Germany, as opposed to repairing them to build units. Nothing like Germany risking it’s bombers, to cause damage it has to repair itself

    Yes, if Russia is low on income, definately. I’d say just don’t accumulate IPCs in the Russian treasury so Germany can take those from you and repair the factories with it.

    Add *** Spend every IPC, every turn** to the list. 😉


  • 2017

    @Gargantua:

    Add *** Spend every IPC, every turn** to the list. 😉

    Big exception:

    If Moscow is NOT at risk of being captured, but its major industrial complex is heavily damaged, then it often beneficial to spend nothing for a turn. This prevents the Axis from bombing every round (and the Soviets often lack the money for a full mobilize anyways).


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    I am in full agreement.

    Like all of this advice, Do A, unless you have a specific plan for B.



  • Great thread guys. Glad to see some good posts that can help new players out a lot :).

    A couple things I’d like to add is that blocking with Russia is almost pointless in most games. Italy should build 2 mech first turn almost every game, and by turn 4 Italy should have 2 tanks and 2 mechs in Russia plus a bomber that can can open. Do you really want to stop this with 5 Russian infantry? that is 5 less defending units on Moscow, which is huge!

    I think the biggest key to defending Moscow on Germany’s turn 6 and 7 are allied fighters. You need to get 12 planes there, and that will stop Germany from being able to take your capital. Once you’ve stopped them on their turn 6 and 7, like Garg said, you will have your reinforcements from the east, and US/Britain will be threatening Germany in the west.



  • " Force the issue at Leningrad Early, send all units there. Build 3 art first turn, a mix of inf and art in Ukr, and all mech in Moscow. This will give you a defending front early, and force Germany
    north."

    Germany goes south and forces you out of Leningrad anyway…


  • 2017 '16 '15 '14 '12

    The communists should die.  Don’t defend them.


  • 2019 '15 '14

    Lots of sound advice in here. Nice work man!

    I have to say though, reading through it all, a lot of these strategy points seem to really highlight the general design flaws with Russia on the G40 board.

    In the older games it was possible to effectively Red Turtle at the center, because you could reach/cover most of the critical territories from just a couple of core spots (eg. Moscow, W. Russia, Arch etc). This is how the Russians were able to function at such a low income (relatively), collecting a meager 24 ipcs, because they didn’t have to move their units very far to hold the line. It also meant that their tanks (which used to be cheaper as well) didn’t have to move as far to get the job done on the blitz.

    Now in almost all of the more recent boards, the general trend has been to add distance between the Axis front line and Moscow. From 3 moves, to 4, to 5 and so on. I suppose the logic being that its “better” to put a bunch of space on the board, so that the Axis have farther to march (if you have a lot of speed bumps and low value territories to stall the JTDTM for example.) So this is what you saw in AA50, and now even more so in G40.

    The current map was basically designed in response to a series of A&A games since Classic that all saw the same thing happen every time, Axis drive on Moscow and Allied center collapse as the only route to Axis victory. The only real factor being how long it took, or what sort of commitment from the W. Allies would be necessary to hold the center and prevent it (since Moscow was the only Capital that mattered.) Along the general assumption that, all the allies needed to do to win, was to deny the Axis a way to win. In all the older games this meant Moscow, to the exclusion of everything else. So as Allies, all you really had to do was stack the Russian capital so deep that the Axis couldn’t take it, and you basically had the game in the bag. In Classic (3rd ed anyway, since the earlier editions were before my time) Russia’s whole game was just a managed withdraw, and holding the center for as long as possible, until the Western Allies could squash Berlin. Which wasn’t very dynamic, and kind of boring for the Russian player. At 24 ipcs. In Revised, Russia had the benefit of Artillery, stronger cheap Tanks, and a more strategically interesting map design on the eastern front. They were still at 24 ipcs, but were bolstered by the armor advantage. Russia on the board was probably the strongest we’ve seen in terms of their relative strength and strategic position at the center. Still, despite that, the dominant Axis strategies all still involved a tank drive on the center. In AA50, this issue was addressed by adding distance. The attempted solution was to add more territories between the Axis and the Russian capital, especially moves from Japan. Even added in some bulwarks against rapid Japanese expansion, such as China as a player nation, and more moves along the northern route. But these essentially failed, since the distance through China was so short, and the Chinese were so weak.

    One thing that didn’t really get considered, when you add so much distance between Axis, and keep all the territories at zero or 1 ipc, you also nerf the Russian’s forward attack options. The distance is usually harder for Russia to cover, than it is for Axis to march. Its just more difficult logistically for the Soviets to launch attacks across that kind of distance. Their income is lower relative to the powers marching against them. Their position requires planning several rounds in advance. And the peripheral territories (the ones closer to Axis) are not on the path of any major objective for the Soviets. Instead what the Russians usually want is to be at the center so they can cover as much land as possible from their comfort zone, the production area around the center. With no production in the Soviet Far east, how could the Russians really be expected to effectively hold it against determined Japanese aggression? They can’t! So evacuate Soviet Far east again, same as always, withdraw to the capital to hold at the center.

    I think there were some missed opportunities with the design of the map board, not to give the Russians a production option behind Moscow, and enough income to fight a more forward game with more attack units. Here it seems that, much like on older boards when the Axis were crushing, you almost always had to bring everything back. All back to the Russian Capital to hold it. Defending against Italians, the turn order design, the wording of the NOs, all consigns the Russians to an even more dire position on this board, despite their start at 37 ipcs. Germany can push a pretty massive inf wall against the Russians. I like this, it was the largest ground invasion in human history after all, but the Russians still seam rather weak to counter it. I think the best thing you can do to have any decent forward game, is to take advantage of artillery. Dollar for dollar, at a cost of 12 ipcs, its often a lot better to get 3 artillery pieces (to activate 3 existing infantry) than it is to just have 4 more infantry hanging around. Especially if, as is often the case, the Russians don’t have a lot of heavy hitters at the ready. The artillery can be thrown forward or traded against German infantry (admittedly at a loss of 1 ipc on the trade) but this is still better than allowing the Germans/Italy or Japan to get closer to the factories and hold ground. So the artillery unit just makes a lot of sense as a purchase. In the older boards, it was possible to just stack infantry, buy armor to launch/strafe in early rounds, and then back to stack infantry… but the distances are greater. You often need the armor/mech for the movement advantage out of the rear factories to get as many units to the front per round as you can, but at the Russian forward factories artillery is definitely the ticket.

    Artillery has been the Russians’ best friend ever since Revised, and still is, but if you buy it, you gotta throw it forward. No point just sitting on it waiting to counter a G stack too massive to penetrate anyway. I think the art is better used in the medium trades if you get the chance, even at a loss on the trade Russian artillery vs G forward inf. Western Fighter shifting towards the center seems pretty essential, regardless of what you buy with Russia. But art is still decent fodder. I’d still wish the Soviets had more income to work with, but 37 ipcs in the first round isn’t too terrible, you can purchase a lot of Art for that, and probably get more out of it than trying to make up the remainder on one extra infantry unit (3/4 on average).

    Buying Artillery, Armor, and now Mech seems like a solid approach, as many as you can afford, for as long as possible. But Art seems the key to me. If the Russian’s whole game usually comes down to stacking fodder and hoping you hit a bunch of 2s, best to try to take those deuces on the attack rolls as well as defense! Its a difference of 1 ipc in cost per Artillery over Infantry, but the extra pip on attack can be so major, in those instances when you catch an opening against Axis units on the trade.

    Another way to think of it, in terms of purchasing strategy,  always pair your Russian infantry with an artillery unit. 1:1 or at least 2:1. If, every time you buy 2 infantry for 6 ipcs, you instead buy 1 inf and 1 art, for 7 ipcs, you will activate all that infantry on attack. Even if the Art starts getting peeled off or has to absorb hits as fodder, you still have a stronger edge on attack/counter/deadzone than just pure infantry stacking alone. 1 ipc more to “activate” an infantry unit attacking at 2 is a pretty good of a single ipc. I always try to fill my forward factories with inf/art to max placement for as long as possible. And save the mech/armor remainder for the rear factories, where the movement advantage can actually make a difference. But even when you have to start stacking the center heavy, art is still a deal for the cost.

    But yeah, all solid points you make above. Again nice work.
    And I love the poster image at the header!!!  😄


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    @ghr2:

    " Force the issue at Leningrad Early, send all units there. Build 3 art first turn, a mix of inf and art in Ukr, and all mech in Moscow. This will give you a defending front early, and force Germany
    north."

    Germany goes south and forces you out of Leningrad anyway…

    Great,

    IF they ignore your stack, then elements of your stack can hold/trade Leningrad from Belarus/Bryansk(mobile units).  1 Less German factory, and potentially 1 less NO to worry about.


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Great post Black Elk!

    And to reiterate to Ghr2, Black Elk, and everyone else…

    I put this list together based on “what is”, and to equip players with some knowledge of the options “that are”.

    Game balanced or not, the bottom line is this:

    You start with all of Russia.  It’s your job to use the setup, your economy, your pieces, and your allies to invent situations that buy you time, slow Germany down, and keep Russia.  There is no perfect formula; But if you stay alive, there is a good chance you’re going to win the game.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13

    • Scotland is a direct 5 space flight to Leningrad

    • Persia is a direct 4 space flight to Moscow, Egypt and India and is a critical territory

    When UK planes are on US carrier
    sz110/92 are one turn zones to Moscow
    sz91 > Bry
    With the same timing the routs are not the same. Think about in rout role for the air.

    • Always spread out your navy, using your cruiser to block amphibious assaults

    Be careful with this one. Rus CC is not a block when Italian planes are in the range. Usually they do.
    Moving units that look useless like Rus CC  consider where Axis has to land air, if attacks next turn. Ger air from W Ger, for example, can’t return back to the W Ger AB when they attack the cruiser left in sz115. It cuts the air operational capabilities and might be essential for Allies in the Med or East Atlantic. All depends. There is nothing set in stone.



  • On second thought; Russia will slow Germany down for sure and (as stated by Garg) they will make for a better Russian play, but in the end Germany is still going to force Russia to turtle.

    That’s just going to happen because of the game design and there is nothing that we can do about it.
    As much as I hate it, trying to stay in control of Moscow is the only thing left to do for Russia if Germany comes for it. I don’t know if this is ‘working as designed’, but it is what it is…

    What to do with Russia when you have a big stack in Moscow, which is (about) the only Russian area left. Why is this not the end of the world? A lot (if not all) of my A&A friends just give up if this situation happens.
    To be more specific, they say that “you [the axis] are producing more IPCs than me [the allies] for a while now, and there’s nothing left the allies can do”. Germany just turtles up itself, while forcing Russia to turtle as well. The difference is that Germany can still make ~80IPCs per turn (and Italy ~20) in this turtled up state, while Russia can make only 8 (-ish). And because the USA must spend all (or just about all) it’s income to prevent a Japanese win by that time, the UK is the only other contestant (IPC-spender) against Germany.

    Now say the UK makes 40IPCs (very optimistic estimation), then Russia + UK make about 48IPCs/turn versus Germany + Italy 100IPCs/turn. I think it is a very legitimate question to ask “if we cannot pry open Germany right now, how are we supposed to do this in the future, seeing this economic disparity?” It takes a specific Axis strategy, but if grasped well, the Axis are going to make ~60IPCs per turn more than the allies and the allies cannot stop this from happening. KJF, maybe, but that’s another thread entirely and speaking frankly, I don’t like KJF to be the solution to everything (if at all). The USA must focus on Japan on a J1DOW already so I don’t want to be limited to KJF in any JlaterDOW (I think is very typical to an economic game by the axis) as well.

    So what about tips for the mid- to late game in Russia?
    I must admit I don’t have tips (I hope others have), but there’s still a few considerations I have. Last straws the allies can hang on to, Provided Russia has been played according to Gargantua’s tips so far.

    Basically, Germany has two options in the economic game:

    • Defend adjacent to Moscow, which requires all or a LOT of the Luftwaffe to help defending [Bryansk]. This should be the opportunity for the allies to -finally- invade in the west. Provided they have a lot of troops that can withstand German counterattacks now stripped of (meaningful) air support.

    • Continue attacking, most notably and only possible into the ME. The Luftwaffe can remain west, keeping the allies out of Eastern Europe, but this allows Russia to break out big time, chasing Germans in all directions.

    Since there’s still tons of things the Axis can do to maintain the economic disparity but also tons of things the allies can do in response, the above is still just a ‘last straw of hope’ and not so much of an advice for allied victory…


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Leclerc.

    It sounds like to me that the problem is Italy and the British game plan to thwart them.

    UK MUST Taranto every game, and scoop the Malta Italian fleet off the board leaving Italy with 1 transport.

    Every effort must be made to keep Italy under $20 for the first 3 turns, and basically bankrupt and shipless from I5/I6 onward by getting some subs into Sz97.

    With Italy removed, allied survival becomes a lot more realistic.  Especially with England getting it’s +5 NO.

    Perhaps that discussion needs an entirely different thread…


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    @Me1945:

    • Scotland is a direct 5 space flight to Leningrad

    • Persia is a direct 4 space flight to Moscow, Egypt and India and is a critical territory

    When UK planes are on US carrier
    sz110/92 are one turn zones to Moscow
    sz91 > Bry
    With the same timing the routs are not the same. Think about in rout role for the air.

    • Always spread out your navy, using your cruiser to block amphibious assaults

    Be careful with this one. Rus CC is not a block when Italian planes are in the range. Usually they do.
    Moving units that look useless like Rus CC  consider where Axis has to land air, if attacks next turn. Ger air from W Ger, for example, can’t return back to the W Ger AB when they attack the cruiser left in sz115. It cuts the air operational capabilities and might be essential for Allies in the Med or East Atlantic. All depends. There is nothing set in stone.

    Great tips, and elaboration.

    Using the Russian cruiser as a 50% shot against Italian planes is one of my favourite scenarios.

    Again, it’s learning to use “useless” units to create situations which force your opponent to gamble, or be otherwise engaged, instead of focused on their most important objectives.



  • @Gargantua:

    Leclerc.

    It sounds like to me that the problem is Italy and the British game plan to thwart them.

    UK MUST Taranto every game, and scoop the Malta Italian fleet off the board leaving Italy with 1 transport.

    Every effort must be made to keep Italy under $20 for the first 3 turns, and basically bankrupt and shipless from I5/I6 onward by getting some subs into Sz97.

    With Italy removed, allied survival becomes a lot more realistic.  Especially with England getting it’s +5 NO.

    Perhaps that discussion needs an entirely different thread…

    Italy, with a ‘little’ help from Germany (30-ish fleet into the med, especially a CV + TRS) indeed is a big part of the problem. Taranto or not, Italy just refuses to go down quickly and axis play an evasive game with their fleets in the med.
    Last game I played, Germany built 1CV, 2TRS, 2DD in total (=44IPCs on ships) and still was able to force Russia to turtle up.
    This means Germany can keep the threat up  against both Gibraltar + Egypt so the UK/France/ANZAC cannot get to their ‘next phase’ quickly (move into the ME + help Russia).

    Italy easily gets to ~15IPCs by conquest alone, but their NO for no allied ships in the med is also not too difficult with a combined German-Italian fleet there.
    Until the USA enters the war, that is.

    There is not much the allies can do about it early in the game, especially if Japan just laughs at America, refusing to DOW it. But you are right, it is stuff for an entirely new thread. I am ‘brooding’ on this for a while now but before I start a thread about it (when still needed), I want to have more information and I lack the time to do some analyses lately… To be continued (probably)  ;-).


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    We can play a league game to test your hypothesis whenever you like. 🙂



  • @Gargantua:

    @ghr2:

    " Force the issue at Leningrad Early, send all units there. Build 3 art first turn, a mix of inf and art in Ukr, and all mech in Moscow. This will give you a defending front early, and force Germany
    north."

    Germany goes south and forces you out of Leningrad anyway…

    Great,

    IF they ignore your stack, then elements of your stack can hold/trade Leningrad from Belarus/Bryansk(mobile units).  1 Less German factory, and potentially 1 less NO to worry about.

    Then they can get moscow for cheap, ok.



  • Aye, Garg, thanks for the invitation but I am not up for a game now. Maybe in a couple of months.
    Point is I still need to ‘recover’ from my last game. I find A&AG40 too ‘calculation-heavy’ nowadays. Especially with the allies.

    BTW, what I wrote ain’t a hypothesis. This axis strategy was used against me last two games so the credits  (if any ;-)) don’t belong to me.


  • 2019 '15 '14

    Its probably worth remembering as the Russians, that if you play to concession (as many do, without regard for the stated VC wins) then it is possible to play on after Moscow falls.

    This has been true of every A&A board, and it has to do with the way that Western units can liberate originally Russian territories from the Axis and gain direct control over them if Moscow is in Axis hands. On the older boards, the deep endgame after Moscow falls, had everything to do with the Naval situation. If Axis controlled the Center, but the Allies achieved Naval dominance, then it was still possible to play on under these conditions. An example of the this would be Super G vs Super USA (post KJF), or Super J vs Super USA (post KGF), which were some of the most satisfying endgames to play out. Here, Axis control of the Center is not necessarily the guarantee of ultimate victory that it might seem at first, if the Allies have achieved complete Naval/Air superiority in one theater and can still take a shot on the weaker Axis power (whether Berlin or Tokyo).

    A few Russian plays that were interesting back then were the Air evac from Moscow, and also the timely stack launch off Moscow either towards the North (Baltic region) or South (Med/India region), with the aim of continuing to harass Axis while the Western Allies try to trade Capitals (Moscow for an Axis capital) within the same round, or 1 round out. And then of course there is always the stand up defense of Moscow, all-in, where you gun for max hits, knowing full well that the capital will be taken in the end. Many of these endgames are still playable for Allies, even after Moscow has fallen, and can be a lot of fun if both players are willing.

    Some players will just concede defeat after the first critical capital falls, normally as an expedient way to say who won (or because people just don’t have the time to continue). I think the courteous way to play though (if playing to concession) is to allow at least a Victory lap, to see how G or J will use the captured Russian purse. I think the more games you play out this way (after Moscow falls), the more apparent it is that, in order for Axis to truly win, the dominant Axis power needs to maintain continuous Naval/Air parity with the dominant Allied powers.

    Without a Navy or at least a massive Air armada, just holding the Center isn’t enough, since Allies can spring board with their transports, and sometimes achieve a pretty close income balance through liberating former Soviet territories to still contest the board.

    Part of me thinks its a little unfortunate in G40, that Anzac wasn’t more potent as an alternative objective to Moscow for the Japanese. If Japan had a pacific endgame, with more springboards onto North America, and a legit chance of capturing W. US, that would have been cool. But Anzac isn’t really enough of a long term threat to Japan to prompt a full commitment there by the Japanese, and its not really worth enough production to risk the Center over it. Traditionally, Australia is usually regarded as a distraction from the main event, and an Allied boon if Japan goes after it. Maybe if Sydney was worth like 8 ipcs instead of 2! Or if it had a major IC rather than a minor, Japan would have a real reason to drive south pacific vs North America, instead of overland towards Moscow as a way to mess with the Allies, but alas, the set up doesn’t favor it. Kind of a missed opportunity to have a viable 3rd capital objective in the Pac there.

    But even still, as the Russian player, same as in the older A&A boards, you can use this to your advantage. The more force Russia draws onto itself, and the longer they can keep Axis bogged down on the principle objective of the Center, the more time it gives USA/UK to establish Naval/Air dominance in at least one theater.

    The more games you play out after Moscow falls, the more you can see possibilities for Allied recovery, and why holding Moscow for as long as possible is so important.

    I’ve seen a couple schools of thought on Russian play, over time, on several different boards.

    There is the 1 fighter per round school, (which works for most other player nations really, though perhaps not as strong with the Soviets) and it says, buy 1 fighter a round every round, no matter what, and eventually you will have a fighter stack large enough trade territory or deadzone with your infantry alone, and which can be flown to support Western Carriers, or onto key territories for defense in the round before Moscow collapses. This can be a fun strategy, though it also invites a stomp drive from the Axis on your capital.

    The artillery and armor school, which has the Russians launching as many attacks as they can from the get go, and driving forward as hard as possible, knowing full well that the odds are likely against them, and their capital will eventually fold. Here the goal is to tie down and destroy as many Axis units as possible, preferably in large stack strafes.  Usually aiming to keep the armor stack explicitly for use in favorable strafes, and for defense of the capital. Here you use the inf/art combo + air support to trade territories with G or J, while retaining the armor to threaten medium to large size stacks. Back when armor was pretty cheap at 5, it made a bit more sense to throw the tanks forward, but now that they cost 6, the incentive to keep them alive and strafe rather than take is pretty strong. I think artillery is the best buy overall, for forward attack with Russia, but I’ve seen armor used to great effect in the endgame, especially if it has a break out route.

    And of course the final and most popular has been the Infantry grind, stack at the center school. Here the goal is likewise, to draw down as many Axis units as possible, and to see one climactic battle for control of Moscow (using W. Fighters, and every pip you can, as much Russian fodder as possible.) Basically it comes down to stacking deep and hoping that the first round of combat in the final battle for Moscow favors the Russians. I think this strategy, which was dominant in Classic Revised and AA50, is rather less dominant now, because the center is more involved (there are almost twice as many territories there now) and the distances between the production facilities is increased. Still, its pretty hard to argue against the potential of a nice roll, and lots of 2s, for the final battle on Moscow.

    Whether to evac the air, or trade it can be a hard call to make. But sometimes if you keep it, you can still play out a pretty fun endgame after Moscow is toasted.

    G40 is such an involved game in terms of the playtime and the set up, the number of sessions to completion, in my FtF experience, lots of players would rather just continue on for another few rounds in the deep endgame, than reset the board and start another! hehe you know, on account of how this game takes like 10-20+ hours of dedicated play to resolve 😉


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '12

    Garg does what he says.

    We played 2 games, 1 even FAF over the real board.  Long story short, I was able to capture Moscow in 1 game, but lost it.  The other, I was laying siege but we ran out of time.

    Result, Garg’s Russia defense is worth studying.  Yet, I must say, he lays it on with the Allies to alleviate the Russian burden.  That is important and puts Asia at risk…. he…he…


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

  • 14
  • 11
  • 8
  • 4
  • 34
  • 21
  • 8
  • 14
I Will Never Grow Up Games
Axis & Allies Boardgaming Custom Painted Miniatures
Dean's Army Guys

56
Online

14.8k
Users

35.5k
Topics

1.4m
Posts