Strafing Sea Zone 37 (Indian Ocean) on Turn 1?

  • 2021 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    I apologize if this topic has come up before – but what do people think about having Britain strafe Sea Zone 37 (the Indian Ocean) on B1? If you bring in the carrier, fighter, and destroyer from the Indian coast along with the sub, cruiser, and destroyer from Australia and the fighter from Egypt, then you are rolling 13 pips of offense, so you should expect to inflict two hits – one of them gets covered by the Japanese BB, and the other costs the Japanese a fighter. Meanwhile, the Japanese are rolling 14 pips on defense, so you should expect to take 2-3 hits, losing both fighters and maybe the submarine. You then retreat after the first round of battle, bringing the combined fleet back to the coast of India, where you re-equip it with two new fighters that you build directly on the carrier. Use the transport to offload 2 Australian infantry into India, and use your third build in India for an artillery.

    Now you’re playing with 6 inf, 1 art on land, and a fleet of 2 ftr, 1 CV, 1 CA, and 1 DD. If you want to play KJF, this forces Japan to either abandon the attack on India or bring essentially the entire Japanese fleet to cover Burma, leaving Tokyo and Manila vulnerable to attacks from the USA. If you want to play KGF, this maximizes the number of British boats that survive – the fleet can move to re-take Egypt on B2, and invade Italy on B3.

    Thoughts? How would you counter this as the Axis?

  • I see  you have 2 destroyers and there none that could reach sz37. There is one in the Med but I believe it cannot reach it. There is another cruiser off the coast of India (I can’t think the number of the sz).Even if Egypt is taken over it’s still a strong attack and I never did a hit and run or strafing on that sz.

  • '17

    It is not a bad idea, though i don’t like the idea to exchange two fighters for one. In the counter strike i might loose the rest of my fleet. I rather trade my complete for the japanese fleet, and buy three inf in india in stead of fighters. You might be able to position your transport so that it can offload the Aussie inf in E2.

  • '17

    I checked the gameboard on this issue. I do like the idea. You need a little lucky dice, but then you screw the Japanese. If your attack is too weak you could also choose to not build new fighters on the carrier, but just build units on land. But if your straffe goes well, your fleet end up in a very good position to be annoying to the Japs. I might just do it in my next game  8-)

  • '17 '16 '15 '14

    It seems like a good idea and if you play low luck, then UK will end up with a cruiser left.  This assumes the G1 did not take out the fighter in Egypt and everything was brought to bear against the BB, CAR and 2 FIG.  2 CRU, 2 FIG, CAR, SUB has the ability to hit really hard, it also has the ability to hit really light and then leave anything built in India totally vulnerable.  I’ve done this against the AI and the first time I did it, it worked out great.  Every other time, it was a total loss by UK.  The BB of Japan, to me, basically removes the 2 FIG from the equation.  The odds don’t look so good anymore.

    If the strafe fails, the navy will get hit hard by what Japan has in the area.

    Of course, when it works it is great.  The problem is that when it doesn’t, the allies are in a worse situation than they started.

    Kirk S.

  • 2022 2021 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    I did at one point use AACalc to identify that the UK has a 55% chance of success with those units that are available on sz37, nevertheless tried it and it went horribly wrong.

    Since then my approach to this option has depended on the broader strategy I intend to follow. For example even an unsuccessful sz37 can aid a US Pacific threat, if that is your strategy. But if KGF there may be better things to do with these UK units - defending Egypt and building a southern Europe threat for example.

    I am too much of a newbie to have all the options clear in my head, but it feels right to approach a risky attack such as sz37 with clarity as to whether it is the best way to advance your overall plan, whatever that may be.

  • Moderator

    I don’t think its a bad move, if you are going KJF.  I wouldn’t use it if I were going KGF though.

    But in the case of a KJF I’d consider it, I probably wouldn’t go strafe though.  I’d just stick it out to the end and wait on the trn move.  Obviously you lose the option of getting the inf from Aus to Ind rd 1.  But if you wait out the battle and it goes well, you’ll still be able to get the inf to India on rd 2 since the south Indian Ocean should be safe and if the battle goes poorly and the J BB (and possibly the AC too) survive you can still move the trn (possibly loaded) to sz 30 and try and bait Japan to either move the BB further out of position or if the AC survived I suppose J could use a ftr, but then the AC is out of position.

    I’m not sure if this makes Pearl more or less likely, but if J still does Pearl they should lose their sub and the Cru (if not killed there) will be killed on a US counter.  And if Japan foregoes Pearl the US might be able to stack its fleet At Solomon in rd 1 (certainly rd 2 with heavy rd 1 naval buy) and really start to mess with the south Pacific early.

    Further if you want to be ultra aggressive and try to overload J with targets you can stack Bury with Russia (possibly bring over a ftr if you did Wrus only) and then follow up with UK buying 3 subs for India.
    The subs can be insurance if the BB survives, it won’t want to linger all alone for too long.
    You’ll be light on a couple of Indian troops but Japan should not be able to really threaten India much in the early game given the naval threats or possible bait of Russia stacked in Bury.

    However, with all this said you could be telegraphing the move if you are all in with Russia, so maybe you lay back with them so you can make sure Germany doesn’t go heavy navy and threaten London or go into tank blitz mode, which would certainly change how you play UK 1 and possible force you to call off the Sz 37 attack.

    And quickly back to the sub buy and transports.  If you do move the loaded trn to Sz 30 the subs can certainly deter a lone BB from going after it.  So you should be able to recoup 2 inf to India on rd 2.  Now if J survived with a BB and AC and took out the loaded trn with them or brought in a fighter from SE Asia you could still take a shot, and hope after 2-3 rds of battle you can at least get two and sink the AC.  Or finally if you landed your bomber in Per on UK 1, you can now threaten an attack of 3 subs, 1 bomber.  Sometimes the threat is just enough.

    I’m thinking at this point J probably sees the threats and pulls back to a safer spot like Sz 61 and UK can now focus on ground troops for India and let the US do the rest of the heavy lifting in the Pacific.

    It’s an ALL-IN approach to a KJF in rd 1, but it can really work provided you have a real good Russian player and Germany opens with a “standard” opening (no ultra heavy naval buys and certainly no G1 Egy or Trj attack).

  • If you strafe SZ37 with a loaded transport and retreat to the India sea zone, are you allowed to offload the inf into India?

  • I looooove this tactic and have used it in multiple games now, thanks so much for the idea. I think it’s an excellent strategy because you get to bolster Egypt with a man from India and Persia with the Indian transport and bring your other two guys into Burma, while still having 2 men in India (or more if you buy men on UK1). On UK2 (or even 3 if your fleet survives) you may even see an opportunity to strike the East Indies with your 2 transports as well.

  • '19 '18 '17 '16 '15


    If you strafe SZ37 with a loaded transport and retreat to the India sea zone, are you allowed to offload the inf into India?

    Nice thought, but unfortunately you cannot. Once you have sea zone attack your infantry cannot be offload right away but remain carbo in the transport.

  • '19 '15 '14

    It’s not exactly related to any strafe, but a move I sometimes enjoy is to hit sz61 and sink the destroyer there, then send your Aussie sub to sz37 and dive immediately (no combat). This can be annoying for Japan, especially if you put your bomber in range, and kept your fighters at the ready for a UK2 attack.

    It’s not as painful as trying to kill a Japanese carrier in the first round, and it gives you some naval flexibility against the IJN in the second round, without requiring you to risk the destruction your own navy in the process. If no good attacks vs Japan present themselves, then your sub can bounce towards Suez and just hang out there until more British aircraft arrive to make it effective.

    If the Japanese destroyer in sz61 is sunk on UK1, there is no way for Japan to attack this sub, so it’s safe camped out in sz37 by the Japanese battleship/carrier group (going anywhere the Japanese can go) at least until J2, when it can either attack a target of opportunity or withdraw towards Africa.

    I’m very wary of an opening move that leaves the second Japanese transport alive, because it allows Japan to bring their ground units into the fray much sooner. Not attacking sz61 would seem to be a requirement of the sz37 attack, whether you’re going all out or just trying some kind of strafe move. A British bid can change my outlook, another sub or destroyer or fighter bid to UK can make the sz37 trade much better, but OOB it still seems real dicey to me.

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