A simple fix for China…


  • '16 '15 '14 Customizer

    How do you simulate the historical strength of China in a simple way in this game? The common complaint I’ve always read is that China is too weak and easily rolled over by Japan. First some historical research should be done. There are three important characteristics of China’s war with Japan that should be included in any house rule.

    Historical facts to include:

    1. Limited ability for China to counterattack

    Chinese forces were badly trained, badly disciplined and badly equipped. Their loyalty was questionable. The truce with their Communist rival, the CCP, was fragile. Both sides seemed more intent on maintaining control in their own territory than in fighting the Japanese. Both were expecting and preparing for a fresh civil war as soon as Japan was defeated. Therefore China’s ability to attack Japan should be poor.

    2. Difficult and costly for Japanese to advance

    Chinese forces stalled the Japanese advance by flooding rivers and canals; Mao’s armies conducted what he called a “sparrow war,” limited to small-scale guerrilla attacks. Fighting primarily a defensive war, the Chinese made use of the vastness of China to trap more and more Japanese troops in this large theater as occupation troops.

    Twice as many Japanese soldiers were killed in China than in the Pacific. More than 1.5 million Japanese military personnel were sent to China and bogged down.

    3. Bottomless Chinese infantry

    The very size of China precluded a total Japanese victory. China’s population at the time was 400 million people. Japan had 73 million. China had 3.8 million men under arms in 1941.

    A simple house rule to simulate this conflict is:

    Each time Japan attacks a Chinese territory, five Chinese troops rise up. With this rule in place, China hardly has enough units to launch any big offensive, but if Japan attacks, it always costs them. If China happens to take back a territory that Japan has occupied, then it resets - five infantry rise up again the next time Japan attacks. If Japan retreats from an attack, any surviving Chinese from the five that rose up are removed from the map. Five come back out if the territory is attacked again.

    Has this been game tested?

    Yes. First we simulated it with 10 Chinese rising up - that was too many. Then we tried with 7 rising up - still too strong for Japan. We tried 4 - too easy for Japan. 5 seems about right so far. What happens is the historic result - The Japan player gets about 1/2 way across China before losing most of his cheaper ground forces and stalls out.

    China gets down to where they are putting out 2-3 inf per turn. At this point Japan realizes it is a losing proposition to continue attacking China and must consider garrisoning enough Japanese troops on the border to stave off a Chinese counter offensive while striking into Russia, India, or Australia.

    This would work on the G40 map but the numbers of Chinese might need adjusting. It was tested on my custom map. There needs to be 10+ Chinese territories for it to work well.


  • 2019 '15 '14

    The first fix I attempted was to alter the turn order such that China moved first (before Germany). I found that this helps considerably, perhaps more than one might expect. It allows China to consolidate all their starting units along a defensive line of their choosing, and gives them additional artillery at purchase because the Burma road is open.

    It doesn’t handle everything, but I think it is superior to OOB.

    Another thing I’ve noticed, and maybe others feel this way too, but I think the Mongolia rules work against China. I admit to being a little puzzled by the handling of Mongolia in this game. It receives a lot of special attention, has its own rules, is divided up into several territories, but still doesn’t seem to provide the real deterrent to war with Russia that it promises. Once Mongolia goes red, it is fairly easy for Japan to punch holes into northern China, hot on the heels of retreating “Russian” infantry.

    In addition to Mongolia, the fact that China has only 1 flying tiger, really prohibits their ability to trade territory with Japan (even weakly defended territories) so they are always losing more infantry than they can replace. Japan is able to mobilize and attack from multiple territories at once. It frequently possible for Japan to spam 4 to 5 times as many units in the area as China can each round, and often these are fast moving units like Mech and Tanks.

    All this leads me to think that something more is needed, so the idea above seems like it could be interesting.



  • I think China should be treated the same way as Mongolia, a lot of neutral territories with pop-up defenders.

    The rationale is that, at least in my head, China was a playable power in 1937, then Japan occupied the Chinese Capital and IC and cut the head off the body, making rest of China a bunch of neutral territories. Kind of like when Paris was captured, making the rest of colonial France a lot of neutral Vichy-territories



  • I think one fix with china is just making it so that captured territories have to be garrisoned by land units to get there point value to represent partitions and supply logistics. I haven’t tried this yet but it seems like that may dampen the Japanese advance slaughtering china especially in the 1942 scenario.


  • '15

    I can’t imagine a game where China would get five units per attack.  Japan would not be able to make any progress in China and would soon find themselves in trouble, especially if the Allied player likes to use the Siberian troops to harass Japan.

    Based on my groups’ games I don’t see how Japan would ever win in the Pacific under these circumstances


  • 2018 2017 '16 '15 Customizer

    @Nippon-koku:

    I can’t imagine a game where China would get five units per attack.  Japan would not be able to make any progress in China and would soon find themselves in trouble, especially if the Allied player likes to use the Siberian troops to harass Japan.

    Based on my groups’ games I don’t see how Japan would ever win in the Pacific under these circumstances

    Ha works like reality then. They were pretty much doomed.



  • One thing that our group has tried to do is allow the US to build more Flying Tigers while they are “nuetral”.  The plane is built in the Western US I/C and then on the next non-combat move, can be flown out to Hawaii or Midway.  Then on the next combat move, the flying tigear can island hop all the way to China.  It can not be transported on an allied carrier (the P40 was not set up for naval duty).  As long as the US is nuetral, it can build 1ea P40 for the Chinese.  So far, only two have been built and only one made it to China.  The second one was caught on the Philipeans when the Japanese attacked and took the Island.  The thought was to at least try to get more help to the Chinese without altering the OOB too much.  May consider a few more additional infintry to help China remain a viable force.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @Dafyd:

    One thing that our group has tried to do is allow the US to build more Flying Tigers while they are “nuetral”.  The plane is built in the Western US I/C and then on the next non-combat move, can be flown out to Hawaii or Midway.  Then on the next combat move, the flying tigear can island hop all the way to China.  It can not be transported on an allied carrier (the P40 was not set up for naval duty).  As long as the US is nuetral, it can build 1ea P40 for the Chinese.  So far, only two have been built and only one made it to China.  The second one was caught on the Philipeans when the Japanese attacked and took the Island.  The thought was to at least try to get more help to the Chinese without altering the OOB too much.  May consider a few more additional infintry to help China remain a viable force.Â

    Interesting idea.  To make things a little easier for the US and China to pull off this trick, here’s something to consider.  The Philippine-based Far East Air Force of the US Army had a decent number of P40 Warhawks in its inventory at the time (the figure for December 1941 was about 90 operational ones).  The P40 Warhawk was the aircraft flown by the Flying Tigers, and it conveniently appears as the Allied fighter sculpt in A&A 1941 (so it’s ideal for use as the Flying Tiger plane allowed for China under the OOB rules).  Taking your concept of giving China extra Flying Tiger planes, here are two ideas:

    • Replace the American fighter which the setup charts allocate to the Philippines with a P40 Warhawk, then allow it to fly to China as a new unit of the American Volunteer Group (which technically – or at least arguably – would not violate American neutrality), then allow the US to replace this Philippine-based fighter at leisure by a conventionally delivered P38 Lightning American fighter (reserved for US use only).

    • Alternately, leave the American fighter in the Philippines as it is in the setup chart, but add a P40 Warhawk there which can be transfered to China as a new unit of the American Volunteer Group.



  • I like the idea of getting a second flying tiger to China faster.  Our thought process was to potentially help China more without directly altering the setup.  The US doesn’t have to commit more to China but can.  The Chinese/FEC have to keep the road open in order to buy American artillery, even while the US is nuetral.  A previously built tiger enroute to China via the Philipeans, as the game begins, would still demonstate the volunteer spirit and desire to aid China without a direct intervention or violation of the US government supplying weoponry.  The US could still continue to buy and fly P40’s across the pacific until entering the war, should they choose to.  Makes me think of adding a leand lease provision to G40 as well.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @Dafyd:

    A previously built tiger enroute to China via the Philipeans, as the game begins, would still demonstate the volunteer spirit and desire to aid China without a direct intervention or violation of the US government supplying weoponry.Â

    If I were among the US officials involved in this scenario, the cover story I’d come up with (to try to preserve a veneer of neutrality) would go like this.  “China recently purchased from the United States some old surplus P40 Warhawks that our Far Eastern Air Force in the Philippines was already planning to decommission.  We’ve therefore struck them from our official inventory of military hardware, and we’ve hired some civilian pilots to ferry them over to China, where the planes – and perhaps the pilot themselves, because after all this is a free country and we don’t tell our civilians what to do – will join the 1st American Volunteer Group (AVG) of the Chinese Air Force.  None of this should be construed as the US itself becoming a belligerant in the Sino-Japanese War…and in any case, Japan’s in no position to criticize, because they’re the aggressors in that war anyway.  So, there’s no problem with any of this, right?”    😄



  • Exactly.



  • A simple way…in our game, IJN cannot be used to attack China.(until japan is at war againt the allies).


  • '16 '15 '14 Customizer

    @crusaderiv:

    A simple way…in our game, IJN cannot be used to attack China.(until japan is at war againt the allies).

    I don’t see how that would work - China and Japan were fighting since 1937.



  • My house rule for China. If no allies troop in China, China collect 5 ipc + normal ipc and the Burma road, Japan is hardly for take all China, In 3 game test, Is not arrive Japan take all China but is not impossible.


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

    Any body try adding more Chinese Inf to the setup ?

    @GODLEADER:

    My house rule for China. If no allies troop in China, China collect 5 ipc + normal ipc and the Burma road, Japan is hardly for take all China, In 3 game test, Is not arrive Japan take all China but is not impossible.

    This might work also.


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

    @crusaderiv:

    A simple way…in our game, IJN cannot be used to attack China.(until japan is at war againt the allies).

    😄 😄 😄 😄


  • 2019 2018 2017 '16

    CWO Marc has brought up the observation of the map distortion for China greatly exaggerating Japan’s hold on the mainland, and the fact Japan can move in several hundred miles further in unabated the first turn is even more unrealistic. I can’t attest to the troop positions and garrisons of June 1940 but perhaps a few more Chinese infantry could be placed in empty territories (Chahar and Anhwe) to at least force Japan to burn a few more infantry and slow down their unstoppable early onslaught into China.

    Perhaps tied into blunting Japan’s enormous air power they could trade some fighters for an equal value of artillery/infantry.


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

    @SS:

    Any body try adding more Chinese Inf to the setup ?

    @GODLEADER:

    My house rule for China. If no allies troop in China, China collect 5 ipc + normal ipc and the Burma road, Japan is hardly for take all China, In 3 game test, Is not arrive Japan take all China but is not impossible.

    This might work also.



  • Prohibit construction of factories in China by all powers, including Japan. Is simple rule,  and might significantly ameliorate the problem/


  • 2018 2017 '16 '15 Customizer

    @regularkid:

    Prohibit construction of factories in China by all powers, including Japan. Is simple rule,  and might significantly ameliorate the problem/

    Simple enough. I like it.

    The unfortunate thing is that there is no real rationale for why.



  • @regularkid:

    Prohibit construction of factories in China by all powers, including Japan. Is simple rule,  and might significantly ameliorate the problem/

    Of course it could work from a game balance view, but as Hoffman just said, there is no real rational for why. In fact, China had both industry and a capitol before Japan come and occupied it. China should be treated the same way as France after Turn 2, when Germany occupy Paris, but there are still some minor ICs on French territories. Its not like its prohibited to have factories in France for the rest of the game, just because Paris is occupied. So why treat China different ? Why cant all playing nations be equal ? Following the same mainstream rules ? Some derogatory special rule will not fix a game balance issue. Maybe an extra man in Anhwe is better than a wholesale rewrighting of the rulebook _

    just my 2 cents man



  • @Narvik:

    @regularkid:

    Prohibit construction of factories in China by all powers, including Japan. Is simple rule,  and might significantly ameliorate the problem/

    "Its not like its prohibited to have factories in France for the rest of the game, just because Paris is occupied. So why treat China different ? Why cant all playing nations be equal ? Following the same mainstream rules ? Some derogatory special rule will not fix a game balance issue. Maybe an extra man in Anhwe is better than a wholesale rewrighting of the rulebook _

    just my 2 cents man"

    Its actually really simple: China was not a modern, industrialized country at the time of the war. This is not “derogatory.” This is a fact. What you characterize as a “wholesale rewriting of the rulebook,” is actually already part and parcel of the existing rules. . .since China already cannot build factories. Making this restriction apply to all powers that occupy China would make the rules more uniform, not less. . . and it would also make plenty of sense from both a historic and gameplay perspective.

    Just my 2 cents, man


  • 2019 2018 2017 '16

    I think China’s treatment as a territory restricted non-industrial power is an abstraction of the dysfunction that gripped the country as it dealt with both Japanese invasion and a ‘cold’ civil war.



  • That too!


  • '16 '15 '14 Customizer

    Take an overall look at the situation then:

    1. Due to the inner turmoil and backwards technology of China, they could not get their act together offensively to drive Japan out.
    2. China’s practically bottomless infantry reserves and underdeveloped infrastructure made a total Japanese conquest pretty much impossible.

    This historic situation can be duplicated in a simple and acceptable way by having five Chinese infantry rise up every time a Chinese territory is attacked. This way Japan can either burn through a lot of infantry trying to bring down China or set up a defensive wall and expand elsewhere. But China will not be lightly brushed aside any more.


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