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Neutral crush playbook


  • '14

    Does it strike anyone else as kind of peculiar, how the best location on the entire game map for USA production of Minor Factories would probably be the Iraq/Persia pocket? I mean, after a Neutral Crush, they could also attack Saudi Arabia and Turkey. This area seems like solid gold for USA, if only they could get there.

    This never happens in game, because the Iraq/Persia pocket usually goes to UK or USSR, but if you could somehow get USA over to this part of the map in time, then (with the Neutral Crush) they could potentially purchase 12 total production slots right at the heart of the Map. 4 minor factories all bordering each other would be nuts, if they all belonged to USA

    Sure Axis slam Moscow and take this whole area by the time that is likely to happen, but if USA had 12 production slots this critical center region they could take a lot of cash after Moscow falls, picking off all the rich formerly Soviet territories. If you look at the territories immediately surrounding Turkey, (provided Moscow is dead) USA could potentially build like 25+ production slots in this area with minor factories. There are a lot of 2 ipc territories on this part of the map, if USA could establish a foothold, they could nearly match Germany in Eurasia.

    This is actually not a terrible plan, if VC wins are ignored, when you consider how worthless Moscow is to the Axis, once its taken hehe.

    The situation is nothing like 1942.2 or Revised or Classic, where Moscow was worth 8 ipcs. Here its only worth 3, and gets downgraded from a Major factory to a Minor when Captured. So its not nearly the same sort of boon to Germany in 1940 as it was in some other boards. Playing the long game, USA could likely match them on center production, though dealing with Japan at the same time would probably be too much to bear.

    The next best location after the Iraq/Persia pocket, and a more likely candidate, would be 9 production in Scandinavia. 3 minors. With a shot of liberating a fourth minor if Moscow falls but Novgorod could be snapped up by USA. Again unlikely to happen in the timeframe typically allowed, on account of the Luftwaffe and no Royal Navy to speak of, but it does get you thinking. I wonder why all the best locations for production expansion seem to be Neutrals?

    I wish there were more spaces worth 2 ipcs, that America could realistically grab up in a normal game. A 2 ipc space for Libya or Morocco would have been really interesting, because then Allies (or Axis) could have a viable production option. Torch would probably be a lot more fun.

    I see several missed opportunities for the Factory unit in global. Never really liked the “no factories on islands rule,” since it takes away the ability of the US to create a factory chain across the south Pacific. You know, like the way Japan can build a factory chain pretty much anywhere it goes hehe.

    Alas, I get the impression the designers just don’t like purchasable factory units, since they put all these restrictions into effect with the rules. It makes me wonder why the factory unit was even retained in the roster? But the way the rules are set up, some of the best locations for a US factory spam involve taking over Neutrals. The Americans have the income, but just need a way to get their production a bit closer to the fight. All the primo 2 ipc spaces are neutral. Bah!


  • 2015

    @Black_Elk:

    Does it strike anyone else as kind of peculiar, how the best location on the entire game map for USA production of Minor Factories would probably be the Iraq/Persia pocket? I mean, after a Neutral Crush, they could also attack Saudi Arabia and Turkey. This area seems like solid gold for USA, if only they could get there.

    1: I didn’t read the rest of your post after the above.

    2: If at all possible, I always do this with U.K. Take Iraq UK 1. Build mIC UK 2. Start pumping out units UK 3. Also building a Persian factory is possible as well.

    If Germany is very fast at going toward moscow, and it needs the help, you can also place an air base on Iraq on UK 2. UK 3, you build 3 fighters, and fly any planes that are in the med over to Iraq. On UK 4, they can fly straight to moscow. While I can’t imagine many instances where this would be useful, the airbase also lets you scramble to defend anything in the sea zone there as well.

    I usually hit Iraq with the mech from Egypt, the med transport carrying inf/tank, and the fighter/tac off of India. If you want to be really sure, you can also bring the Indian transport, though oftentimes that’s better off taking the DEI for ANZAC or dropping 2 dudes on another money island somewhere to slow down Japan.

    3: There is no practical way for the USA to ever get to the middle east early enough for them to do anything there. It just can’t happen unless your opponent is very bad. Best to let UK try to do what it can with it.


  • 2015

    @teslas:

    @Black_Elk:

    Does it strike anyone else as kind of peculiar, how the best location on the entire game map for USA production of Minor Factories would probably be the Iraq/Persia pocket? I mean, after a Neutral Crush, they could also attack Saudi Arabia and Turkey. This area seems like solid gold for USA, if only they could get there.

    1: I didn’t read the rest of your post after the above.

    2: If at all possible, I always do this with U.K. Take Iraq UK 1. Build mIC UK 2. Start pumping out units UK 3. Also building a Persian factory is possible as well.

    If Germany is very fast at going toward moscow, and it needs the help, you can also place an air base on Iraq on UK 2. UK 3, you build 3 fighters, and fly any planes that are in the med over to Iraq. On UK 4, they can fly straight to moscow. While I can’t imagine many instances where this would be useful, the airbase also lets you scramble to defend anything in the sea zone there as well.

    I usually hit Iraq with the mech from Egypt, the med transport carrying inf/tank, and the fighter/tac off of India. If you want to be really sure, you can also bring the Indian transport, though oftentimes that’s better off taking the DEI for ANZAC or dropping 2 dudes on another money island somewhere to slow down Japan.

    3: There is no practical way for the USA to ever get to the middle east early enough for them to do anything there. It just can’t happen unless your opponent is very bad. Best to let UK try to do what it can with it.

    I’m on board with UK taking over the Mid East early on. In fact, rather than taking Java or Sumatra, I use the transport in India to take Persia for London turn one. I’ll usually build a factory turn 2 and take Iraq as well, then build an Iraq factory turn 3.  Additionally, I’ll have UK take Brazil for the extra money.


  • 2015

    The UK factory in Iraq is arguably much better, and therefore I’d argue that it’s worth taking Iraq over Persia for UK1. Iraq can dump mechs/tanks in Egypt in one turn and is just as close to Russia.

    Granted, maybe you need those Iranians to kill the Iraqis. Maybe you kill the sub-saharan italians with your med transport, and want to keep your planes in India. In that case, Persia first is better than neither at all.


  • 2018 2017 2016

    @Black_Elk:

    Does it strike anyone else as kind of peculiar, how the best location on the entire game map for USA production of Minor Factories would probably be the Iraq/Persia pocket? I mean, after a Neutral Crush, they could also attack Saudi Arabia and Turkey. This area seems like solid gold for USA, if only they could get there.

    This never happens in game, because the Iraq/Persia pocket usually goes to UK or USSR, but if you could somehow get USA over to this part of the map in time, then (with the Neutral Crush) they could potentially purchase 12 total production slots right at the heart of the Map. 4 minor factories all bordering each other would be nuts, if they all belonged to USA

    Sure Axis slam Moscow and take this whole area by the time that is likely to happen, but if USA had 12 production slots this critical center region they could take a lot of cash after Moscow falls, picking off all the rich formerly Soviet territories. If you look at the territories immediately surrounding Turkey, (provided Moscow is dead) USA could potentially build like 25+ production slots in this area with minor factories. There are a lot of 2 ipc territories on this part of the map, if USA could establish a foothold, they could nearly match Germany in Eurasia.

    This is actually not a terrible plan, if VC wins are ignored, when you consider how worthless Moscow is to the Axis, once its taken hehe.

    The situation is nothing like 1942.2 or Revised or Classic, where Moscow was worth 8 ipcs. Here its only worth 3, and gets downgraded from a Major factory to a Minor when Captured. So its not nearly the same sort of boon to Germany in 1940 as it was in some other boards. Playing the long game, USA could likely match them on center production, though dealing with Japan at the same time would probably be too much to bear.

    The next best location after the Iraq/Persia pocket, and a more likely candidate, would be 9 production in Scandinavia. 3 minors. With a shot of liberating a fourth minor if Moscow falls but Novgorod could be snapped up by USA. Again unlikely to happen in the timeframe typically allowed, on account of the Luftwaffe and no Royal Navy to speak of, but it does get you thinking. I wonder why all the best locations for production expansion seem to be Neutrals?

    I wish there were more spaces worth 2 ipcs, that America could realistically grab up in a normal game. A 2 ipc space for Libya or Morocco would have been really interesting, because then Allies (or Axis) could have a viable production option. Torch would probably be a lot more fun.

    I see several missed opportunities for the Factory unit in global. Never really liked the “no factories on islands rule,” since it takes away the ability of the US to create a factory chain across the south Pacific. You know, like the way Japan can build a factory chain pretty much anywhere it goes hehe.

    Alas, I get the impression the designers just don’t like purchasable factory units, since they put all these restrictions into effect with the rules. It makes me wonder why the factory unit was even retained in the roster? But the way the rules are set up, some of the best locations for a US factory spam involve taking over Neutrals. The Americans have the income, but just need a way to get their production a bit closer to the fight. All the primo 2 ipc spaces are neutral. Bah!

    cyanight did bring up the relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia that FDR had been working on during his presidency, having it in play would give the Allies more production options as well as an extra source of income (and carrot) for Germany and Italy to break through the Middle East. On top of that the map is missing the British presence in Yemen to begin with.


  • '14

    @teslas:

    1: I didn’t read the rest of your post after the above.
    […]
    3: There is no practical way for the USA to ever get to the middle east early enough for them to do anything there. It just can’t happen unless your opponent is very bad. Best to let UK try to do what it can with it.

    Hehe had you read the next paragraph, point 3 is basically the very next line.  😄

    I wasn’t trying to suggest the USA in Iraq/Persia as an optimal strategy, but just to point out how all the primo production locations at the center seem to be aggregated in the Neutrals. If it was possible to get there with USA, (which it really isn’t), this area could be an American powerhouse. The advantage if these spaces fell to USA instead of UK, would be during the deep endgame, because USA has so much more money than UK, they could keep spamming factories in this area and filling them to the max each turn to liberate Russia and turn it green. But that never happens because the early advantage to UK is too hard to ignore.

    I wish there were few more places for USA to build factory locations as they went. The only realistic candidate for a factory expansion seems to be Scandinavian, which has its own set of serious problems. So basically USA has nowhere to build, to get them closer to the center, which is kind of a bummer, given how many factory options Japan has to build on their way to the center.
    😉


  • 2018 2017 2016

    I do wonder if there’s a way for the US to exercise “backroom” diplomacy by being able to send loaded transports only beyond their neutrality boundaries that could be ready to “enlist” Brazil and say Saudi Arabia as soon as they went to war. Otherwise the transports would remain loaded and escortless. And it would still take a very long time to get to the Middle East, especially if not going through the Mediterranean.

    But if the Allies really want to they can control the Mediterranean, and the US could just send troops to Saudi Arabia for eventual activation.



  • @General:

    I do wonder if there’s a way for the US to exercise “backroom” diplomacy by being able to send loaded transports only beyond their neutrality boundaries that could be ready to “enlist” Brazil and say Saudi Arabia as soon as they went to war. Otherwise the transports would remain loaded and escortless. And it would still take a very long time to get to the Middle East, especially if not going through the Mediterranean.

    But if the Allies really want to they can control the Mediterranean, and the US could just send troops to Saudi Arabia for eventual activation.

    It takes 4 turns for the US to go around Africa to Saudi Arabia, without needing to use British naval bases in Gibraltar and South Africa. Going through the Med takes 3 turns if you use the Gibraltar naval base and 4 turns otherwise, so going through the Med isn’t really that much faster.


  • 2015

    Going through the med is just impossible in pretty much any game. Either Italy or Germany is going to sink that transport with planes.

    So with that reasoning, you must hope for a J1 declaration of war on the US, and then you could do this:

    US 1: Buy 5 fighters. Sail your single atlantic transport 1/4th toward Saudi (SZ 87)
    US 2: Buy 5-6 bombers. Sail transport 2/4ths to Saudi (SZ 82 or 69). US 1 fighters to French West Africa.
    US 3: Transport now 3/4ths to saudi (SZ 71). US 1 fighters to Egypt. US 2 bombers to French Equatorial Africa.
    US 4: Go time.

    Hit Saudi with your transport. Send in 5 fighters and 5-6 bombers from Africa, taking bomber losses.

    US 5: Build factory (and an air base couldn’t hurt), land your planes on it or near it. If Iraq/Persia are still available, take those if possible.
    US 6: First turn you can purchase units in Saudi Arabia. Buy factories in other middle east countries, if available.

    This is about the time Moscow has gone to hell or the Germans are coming into the middle east. Not enough time to really get any ground units over there. But you could build fighters on US 3 and 4 that would arrive US 5 and 6 for a respectable plane stack. With a bit of UK help, probably enough to shut down any hope of Moscow or the middle east being seriously threatened. A huge problem with this is that you’d have +8 Germans or Italians coming from Turkey.

    This is a 100% Atlantic buy for the first 2 turns turns and a significant drain for US 3, 4, and 5 as well. Very dangerous. Japan is going to go nuts because, remember, they J1’d you.

    Seems like a crazy damn idea–one that is too crazy to work well, probably. Not only that, but it’s completely obvious what you’re up to. However, I think it’d be pretty easy to have UK prevent Japan from killing/blocking your transport J3. And if Japan invested too much in the Indian ocean to stop you for sure, then they’re ruining some of their J1 momentum, so maybe that’s not entirely awful.

    edit-
    I guess you could also send your pacific transports through the panama canal, building a naval base there. This would give you four more units in the middle east shortly after your first transport arrived.

    Better alternative, with nearly the same effect:
    Don’t do Saudi, just have UK save you Persia/Iraq. This saves you from having to violate neutrality, and both are reachable on the same turn as Saudi. If you do hit Saudi, do it the next turn, saving the neutrality violation for one round later.


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