German bomber strategy - How to play and How to counter


  • And apart from that,

    there is a certain threat that forces Germany to attack: if they don’t, the allies take too much of Europe, possibly even Berlin.

    But it’s still a very, very hard thing to beat with the allies. They must calculate, work very closely together and make no mistakes. Two different players for the UK and USA are almost guaranteed not able to work as closely together as required. Unless each player defeated the bomberstrat individually already!


  • @Gamerman01:

    Great point about German bombers in the Pacific, but

    from my own experience I only need ONE to cause havoc with the Allied player, and TWO to be almost SURE that he won’t try any blocks.  Three is overkill.

    Also, this tactic is independent of “dark skies”, that is, you don’t have to have 16 bombers to be doing that.  I never go with “tons” of bombers, but obviously they are a very good buy for Germany and I usually have 3-5 or so

    To your other point, I never said you can force the German player to attack anything to whittle down the bomber fleet.  But you are a very rare person if you can lay off a lot of these targets.  There are very few players who would turn down a very positive TUV trade - say I put a transport and a carrier and a fighter out there in the Atlantic and you have plenty of bombers to annihilate it in one round, so you expect to only lose 1 bomber for a carrier, fighter, and transport, you can’t tell me you wouldn’t attack that.  So no, it’s not forcing, but you can bet your bottom dollar it’ll happen.

    Three bombers: I was raised by the dice over the decades to be very conservative. That is what frustrates some people I play. I use sledgehammers instead of flyswatters when the objective must be complete. This means I forgo many attacks to keep my force concentrated on the primary targets. If my goal is to prevent blocking, I have 3 on site for overkill.

    Rare person: I would agree, it is a rare player, but if your objective is to maintain threat across a region such sacrifices are necessary when the target takes you off task. The problem again rest in years of bad dice, if a risk is not necessary, I won’t take it. I’ve seen too many dice come up all 1’s in the past. However, you are right, I would engage if a single transport/task force presented a major threat that next round or two(its a cost of doing business in that case an expensive one for both sides). I usually use Italy to make those trades if able.

    Have you also found that Germany in the Pacific is a major disruption?

  • 2022 '15 '11 '10 Official Q&A Moderator

    @JamesAleman:

    Have you also found that Germany in the Pacific is a major disruption?

    Absolutely.  Usually my opponents over-react to the bomber threat.  A German bomber or two really opens it up for me.

    Regarding overkill - you’re actually making sure you hurt yourself, rather than making the dice do the hurting.  As you’re probably well aware.  I prefer having 1-2 in key places in the Pacific, ideally with another one that could get there in only a round or two if one or both are actually used and lost.

    My second round league playoff game - he moved the whole fleet to Hawaii, hoping that an ANZAC fighter could destroy my German bomber on an island.  It failed.  Bomber succeeded on the destroyer.  Huge Allied fleet destroyed.

    Here’s another problem with your overkill.  You are not inviting your opponent to take a chance.  If you only have 1 bomber, he might try destroyer blocking anyway.  Don’t fear the dice.  Use them to your advantage.

    If I had sent 3 bombers, he wouldn’t have tried what he tried and I wouldn’t have had the breakthrough opportunity.  You can get away with ultra-conservative when you’re way better than your opponent, but if he’s as good or better than you, it’s a sure way to lose.

  • 2021 '20 '18 '17

    “These dice are so cold!”

    If luck matters, you messed up.


  • @Gamerman01:

    @JamesAleman:

    Have you also found that Germany in the Pacific is a major disruption?

    If I had sent 3 bombers, he wouldn’t have tried what he tried and I wouldn’t have had the breakthrough opportunity.  You can get away with ultra-conservative when you’re way better than your opponent, but if he’s as good or better than you, it’s a sure way to lose.

    I prefer to keep the allies far away and delayed, each round they play it safe, Japan collects more IPCs. If I let dice play a roll, then I have myself to blame when they turn for the allies.

    That is just a difference in play styles. I use maneuver and long term strategy to get the win. If I am forced to deploy forces to sink a fleet, they are not being used elsewhere and trading takes away force projection. Every unit I lose to America, makes the other allied units more useful. Having a large American fleet stay afloat at a distance doesn’t cost me time or money. With the German bomber strategy, the allies are on a timer. They have to force an opening to make a win otherwise they lose to the IPC “clock” (economic victory) I try to keep my trading limited to my ground forces vs enemy pieces. I like to preserve the air and the threat they bring. As long as the enemy doesn’t know that, they will still build ships to protect transports, my focus is on what the transports drop off and how quickly it can be destroyed. If they are close enough to land troops, my starting fighters/tacs are close enough to be casualties for my bombers if I do pull the trigger on ships. (The rare case when I take that shot is if I know it will be a 1 round battle)

  • 2022 '15 '11 '10 Official Q&A Moderator

    Come play a few games in the league and test your skills.  We have players of all skill levels and every skill level in between, and the rankings show you how good each player is, so you can cherry pick your desired competition.


  • @Gamerman01:

    Come play a few games in the league and test your skills.  We have players of all skill levels and every skill level in between, and the rankings show you how good each player is, so you can cherry pick your desired competition.

    I can tell you from what I’ve seen: the guys playing in the league are real good.
    League games take the opposition you’ll get to the next level. Still depending on what tier your opponent is, but if you are confident, I’d challenge at least a tier 1 player. You can always drop down a few if needed ;-). I have played about 5 private games with a tier 3 player and I was very happy about the level of opposition. I must say though, I suspect my opponent’s status as tier3 is not quite correct, because he played only 2 league games (2014), which he both won. As axis, but still…

    Anyway, if I had more time to play league, I definately would. So JamesA if you have the time to do it, I’d pick up Gamerman’s gauntlet 8-).


  • @Gamerman01:

    Come play a few games in the league and test your skills.  We have players of all skill levels and every skill level in between, and the rankings show you how good each player is, so you can cherry pick your desired competition.

    League?

  • 2022 '15 '11 '10 Official Q&A Moderator

    On the A&A.org boards, look down for the Play by Forum section, then Play Boardgames section, Child board “league”.  Look at stickied thread for league rules.  Look at another stickied thread for the league standings.

    Anyone can join any time, there’s no sign up, you merely play someone else in the league by making a game thread in the league section.  Report your game result in the appropriate stickied thread, and you are officially in the league standings.

    There are playoffs at the end of the year (which is 10/31) but you have to have 4 game completed during the year to qualify.  You’re missing out - come check it out


  • The league is indeed a great place to find matches.  The level of competition is far above the skills that you would find in a local gaming group.  The best players in our Denver area group would still be near the bottom of the league guys.  Many opponents have played more than a hundred G40 matches in their lives, allowing them to understand the finer points of game play.  If you make a mistake, they are almost guaranteed to capitalize on it.  Plus with the ability to use a battle calculator for every plausible move, it makes it easy to see where they are a couple units short of having adequate defenses.

    Combining the calculator with a large number of German bombers is quite powerful.  I was playing against an opponent of superior skill, and I was able to exploit a critical weakness of his plan since he has to not make any mistakes in the huge radius that my bombers can reach.  He had a stack of land units and British bombers in the Middle East that could be pulverized in one bombing wave.  That was a huge game changer since it then opened up Egypt for invasion and prevented UK relief of Russia.

    I am beginning to think that a standard ground-based Moscow crush is more reliable for Germany, but that bombers allow a player to have a chance against a superior opponent.

  • '20 '18 '17 '15

    @taamvan:

    “These dice are so cold!”

    If luck matters, you messed up.

    Uh…or you’re playing a DICE game?  Yes, strategy can minimize the effects (namely knowing when to retreat), but it’ll never be completely gone, otherwise you’re playing too cautiously.

  • 2022 '15 '11 '10 Official Q&A Moderator

    Amen

  • '15

    @Arthur:

    I am beginning to think that a standard ground-based Moscow crush is more reliable for Germany, but that bombers allow a player to have a chance against a superior opponent.

    I did some theory craft with this a couple of years ago with a friend, and recently in a sad-lonely game against myself for the first 4-5 turns because the internet went out at my house.

    I would agree that the “classic” ground-based approach to Moscow, in a vacuum of sorts, is a superior method of taking Moscow.

    I also agree that a bunch of German bombers makes the Allies need to pay much more thought time into what they intend to do, because you’re increasing the load of “what-ifs” substantially due to the range of bombers. This can have the effect of having them forgetting some of those options, especially in a real-life context where spending and hour and a half pondering your US/UK turn+repercussions+long-term options is rather frowned upon, which ups your chances of having the allies make a mistake somewhere.

    Whether or not it allows you to do better against a “superior” opponent, I’m not sure. I am especially not sure if that is the case in a play-by-email/play-by-forum tripleA game, where time is much less of a concern.

  • 2022 '15 '11 '10 Official Q&A Moderator

    Oh, it is, because all the bombers raises the stakes and risks

    You can make the dice work for you - if the ships miss and the AA misses, no amount of strategy and tactical ability can stop that.

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