Russian eastern infantry



  • I’ve been seeing a lot of “move the eastern Russian infantry to Moscow” recommendations, but many times when I see someone do that they end up being used to fend off Japan on Russia’s backside instead of reinforcing Moscow against Germany.

    Some consider stacking Amur on R1 but that just seems to invite Japan to wipe them out conveniently.

    What I’ve been doing recently is stacking them on Bury in R1 then moving them to Amur in R2 when Japan moves south and can no longer conveniently kill them off (or later, if Japan can counter). I do this in conjunction with a R1 DOW on Japan and moving some mobile units to southwest China to help in the contest for Yunnan. This pins a dozen Japanese units in defense of Manchuria/Korea which appears to make a world of difference in the sustainability of UKPac/China/ANZAC in the south.

    US keeps enough fleet at Hawaii to keep the Japanese navy from moving too much navy towards India. Heavy inf/art buys by Russia and mid-round fighter support from UK and ANZAC keep Moscow from falling in this scenario.

    My question is: why not keep those INF in the east to pressure Japan every game? Why do the long march east and take them out of the game for five, six rounds of play when they could be useful all that time - especially early on when Allies need every counter threat they can muster?


  • '15

    I’m with you 100% and often argue that very point on the board.  I like Buryatia R1, Amur R2, and if the opportunity is there I like to attack Manchuria or Korea R3.  I believe the upside to this is greater than walking back to Moscow


  • '15

    Whenever I’m playing Japan, I’m overjoyed to see the Russian forces hanging out in the East.  They can’t do more than be an annoyance to me, and if they’re over bothering Japan, then Germany will have a much easier time taking Russia and defending Europe.

    THe old strategy of land USA units in Korea, reinforce with Russian ones, build a factory, … profit?  Just never seems to work in practice.  Or rather, when it does work, it’s only because Japan was already soundly defeated anyway.



  • The threat of reinforcing a US landing in Korea is only part of the story. The other part is that you pin a dozen Japanese land units in defense, and those are units that are not advancing on China and the UK and not being shipped around the South Pacific to take over islands.

    My contention is that neutralizing those Japanese land units and magnifying the danger to Japan of a US attack on SZ6 provides more overall value to the Allies. By supporting China and UK Pac this way it can actually enhance defense of Moscow, since UK and ANZAC get more freedom to fly extra planes in that direction rather than needing them against Japan.

    In my mind the equation is something like 18inf 2aa in Moscow in R6 vs. the benefits described above and 3-4 UK/ANZAC ftr in Moscow at the same time. (ANZAC ftrs can be there at the end of the 4th round if you’re hustling).



  • @Nippon-koku:

    I’m with you 100% and often argue that very point on the board.  I like Buryatia R1, Amur R2, and if the opportunity is there I like to attack Manchuria or Korea R3.  I believe the upside to this is greater than walking back to Moscow

    I’ve actually not been attacking with them until and unless Japan is committed too deeply in the south to respond. Just leaving them sitting there keeps pressure on Japan and keeps a good chunk of its land units out of the fight. Factoring in expected J1 losses, the units that have to hang out in Manchuria can be half of all Japanese land units on the board that are just stuck defending. And if he thinks 10 units plus an AA are good enough, he’s in for a surprise when you attack with 66% odds. It’s a 12-unit commitment for Japan to keep those Russian inf idle and out of its northern territories.


  • '15

    @SubmersedElk:

    @Nippon-koku:

    I’m with you 100% and often argue that very point on the board.  I like Buryatia R1, Amur R2, and if the opportunity is there I like to attack Manchuria or Korea R3.  I believe the upside to this is greater than walking back to Moscow

    I’ve actually not been attacking with them until and unless Japan is committed too deeply in the south to respond. Just leaving them sitting there keeps pressure on Japan and keeps a good chunk of its land units out of the fight. Factoring in expected J1 losses, the units that have to hang out in Manchuria can be half of all Japanese land units on the board that are just stuck defending. And if he thinks 10 units plus an AA are good enough, he’s in for a surprise when you attack with 66% odds. It’s a 12-unit commitment for Japan to keep those Russian inf idle and out of its northern territories.

    Exactly.  I’d never go in there with a mutual annihilation attack, but I’m quite surprised at how often Japan is willing to leave Korea and/or Manchuria light (perhaps they just don’t think anyone would attack?)  I’ve also run into some opponents who seem to think a few planes can make up for a lack of ground unit protection.

    I distinctly remember one game a long while back where the Japanese player left 4 inf, an AA, 2 fighters and 2 tacs in Manchuria.  I had a great first roll (five hits) and the battle ended with Japan wiped out and 11 Russian inf + 2 AA in Manchuria.  Even without a great first roll Russia would usually win that battle with 7 or 8 inf left.

    You always have to play the board of course, but for the most part I’m all about this move



  • I think many people view infantry as strictly defensive units, but if you have a large enough pile of them they become quite significant on offense as well.

    My last game I stacked Amur on R2, didn’t advance until R5 (overran a single inf in Korea), and on R6 took out a dozen defending units on Manchuria with 8 inf and 2 AA surviving. My opponent unwisely took back Korea only to have the US take SZ6 and recapture immediately, which for all practical purposes ended Japan’s game and allowed the US to focus 100% on Europe thereafter, which was much more significant in keeping Moscow out of Axis hands than another 18inf 2aa in Moscow would have done. The US only needed 3.5 turns of production in the Pac theater to build that fleet so it was already full-building in the Atlantic by US5 and safely stacking units on Gibraltar by US6.


  • 2018 2017

    I think we are really onto something here because whether you stack it T1 or move it T2, this stack is game changing for Japan whereas its probably not for Germany/Russia.      Moscow will probably eventually fall no matter what you do (and no matter what Japan does).

    I was playing Japan in G93(G42) and I cannot help but forget that Russia can attack me on any turn.  Since the Russia stack is better on defense than offense,  you actually have to protect both territories (Manchuria and Korea) because its pretty easy for him to hold the one he grabs.  Who cares about losing 6 guys that are sacrifices anyways.

    One of the club players always sends a Russian fighter over that way–I used to think this was silly but not so sure anymore.

    Another well made point on this one is that if you move the stax to Bury (then back to Amur on R2), the Japanese player just assumes you are going to head home and then goes about his merry way, moving away from Japan and SZ6.  It becomes much harder to hit Amur after J1, and there is some kind of wishful thinking going on with Japan-mind (comes from AxA Pac 1940 games no doubt) that Russia isn’t a real threat.

    I still think hiding China up in Kansu (or Suiyuyan) has some merit in this setup because he has to stage his planes and infantry where they can hit you in force, and that’s usually more southern air stacks than northern.

    I’m calling this one “5 Spicy Powers Punch” KJF strategy.


  • Customizer

    When I have played Russia, I tend to use the 18 far eastern infantry as follows:
    1 Leave 4-6 infantry in Amur while stacking all the rest in Buryatia. Meanwhile, I send the fighter/tac from Moscow to Yakut and send the mech/tanks from Moscow and Stalingrad on their way toward the eastern infantry.
    2 If Japan takes the bait and attacks Amur, I will use the remaining infantry in Buryatia plus the fighter/tac to attack his forces in Amur, more than likely wiping out the last of Japan’s land units in that area.
    3 If Japan does not attack, I will wait for the mechs/tanks to get to Buryatia, probably 2-3 rounds, then move the whole force to Amur and go on the attack. Like taamvan mentioned, often times Japan will be focused farther south so Russia can have a good time taking Chinese territories away from Japan.  If I’m lucky, Russia could even go down and take that factory in Shanghai away from Japan.
    At the very least, Japan may turn around and pound my Russian force, but that will take valuable resources away from other sectors which could stunt Japan’s expansion.
    As for Moscow defense, I don’t think those extra 18 infantry really make that much of a difference against a determined German attack.  My purchases for Russia are usually 9 infantry and 1 fighter each turn so Russia ends up with a pretty good defense.


  • '15

    I will say, if I’m Germany, and I see those Russians staying east, I am pretty god damn happy about it. I don’t think there’s any amount of UK air that could delay Germany at that point.

    The 18 russians pretty much decide this:

    1: Crumple Japan faster, so you can go try to kill monster Germany sooner, but Germany becomes that monster sooner.
    2: Try to hold Moscow for an extra two turns so that you have time to crumple Japan before turning to kill Germany.

    On the surface, it’s Six one way, Half a dozen the other.

    If I see 18 Russians in Bury, I think you’re more than likely coming back to Amur. If you want to convince Japan that you’re going to Moscow, 6 inf need to go to Yakut. And if you do want to go to Moscow, those 6 inf getting there one turn earlier can be the difference between holding Moscow for 2 more turns or losing it.

    Keeping the 18 Ruskies in Bury R1 does annoy the hell out of Japan, and indeed the major fear is the dreaded reinforcement of an American landing in Korea. That can be a hard tick to dig back out, and there’s no real way to prevent it, since America is always going to be able to get to SZ 6 since Japan is, and should be, down in the south pacific shutting down UK Pac, taking money islands, and hopefully threatening ANZAC into being more of a turtle instead of a cornered badger. Whether America loses its entire navy to do this and whether they can do anything useful with their stronghold in Korea after they have it, is another story.

    The standard J1 opening can’t really “handle” the R2 Amur stack, so that is a decent way to throw a stick into the spokes of the Japanese player. You couldn’t kill what he puts into Manchuria, most likely, but those are units that are never going through China, and you might even be able to tie up a few of his planes for an extended period. Whether or not that’s worth it for the allies, no clue.

    Added bonus: The Amur stack usually keeps all of your far east territories yours, so that might save you a few IPCs/round.


  • '15

    @SubmersedElk:

    The threat of reinforcing a US landing in Korea is only part of the story. The other part is that you pin a dozen Japanese land units in defense, and those are units that are not advancing on China and the UK and not being shipped around the South Pacific to take over islands.

    Now, that is what I hope for as a Russian player using this strat.  But when I’m the Japanese, I don’t defend Manchuria or Korea.  I might leave a few inf in Korea if I’ve got transports in SZ 6 with nothing better to do for some reason, but otherwise, I just leave it alone.

    So they take Manchuria?  No worries.  I deal with them later.


  • '15

    @Shin:

    @SubmersedElk:

    The threat of reinforcing a US landing in Korea is only part of the story. The other part is that you pin a dozen Japanese land units in defense, and those are units that are not advancing on China and the UK and not being shipped around the South Pacific to take over islands.

    Now, that is what I hope for as a Russian player using this strat.  But when I’m the Japanese, I don’t defend Manchuria or Korea.  I might leave a few inf in Korea if I’ve got transports in SZ 6 with nothing better to do for some reason, but otherwise, I just leave it alone.

    So they take Manchuria?  No worries.  I deal with them later.

    I’ve gotta say, if I’m the Allies and I see that Japan left Manchuria undefended and I can walk in with the 18 troops + 2 AA’s, I’m stoked.  Let’s say J2 Japan says “Screw it, take Manchuria on R3.”  As China, I’m saving my end of turn 1 money (which should be 15), combining it with my end of turn 2 money (should be 11 or 12, let’s say 11), which gives me 26 to spend on 8 inf in Manchuria turn 3.

    That sounds like a massive headache for Japan



  • Last game I played the Axis player basically ignored China entirely other than to move troops through to attack India. I had a great Chinese stack plus the Russian stack eating up all the Chinese territories, but sadly it did me no good as he ruthlessly exploited the fact that his airbase/factory setup in FIC could not be attacked by Chinese troops, and moved on to conquer India and then Egypt. It was undescribably lame, but those are the game rules so I can’t blame him for playing by them.

    What do you do with 40+ Chinese units that have already conquered every territory they can move into?


  • '15

    China can really only take 11 IPCs/turn away from Japan’s starting income, and you can possibly prevent a further 4 more if you also reclaim Burma/Kwangtung. That’s all. I’ve never seen them do that early game, when they desperately need the coastal IPCs. There’s a damn lot of money inside of China, however, and Japan pushing China into extinction is a relatively “safe” method of ballooning Japan’s economy.

    Japan totally abandoning China is not that big of a deal mid or late game, however, if they already hold Calcutta. It does give America/Anzac a very safe place to land some planes, and does cut into Japan’s bottom line pretty hard, but if they have saved money on land units casualties by abandoning it in the first place, that’s largely mitigated.

    But for a Japan that just totally ignores China? Yeah, there’s nothing you can do other than, at best, take 15 IPCs/turn from him and provide a safe® place for other allied soldiers to advance on Calcutta/FIC/Korea. That, and you can hold a total of two victory cities, making Japan ignoring China mean that the Atlantic victory is the best one to gun for.


  • 2018 2017

    If Japan only had India and SE asia (12) and the spice islands (20) and mainland (8), it would only have 40 income, and that seems really really bad.  Having 40 Chinese infantry all over him would be an added bonus.

    Only 11 lost of 26!  ONLY?!?! Damn!

    Can’t UK India use UK Africa based planes on UK4-5 to save Bombay?


  • '15

    Teslas, I get what you’re saying in regard to the 11 IPC, but I feel it’s specious reasoning.  By turn 3 Japan normally has another 8 IPC between Chinese territories and Kwangtung (which you mentioned along with Burma); now we’re talking 19 IPC, which you could call 22 (Kwangtung being a 3 ipc swing).  Add to that the two victory cities that China can help control and Japan probably isn’t winning the game.

    That’s very significant


  • '15

    Japan isn’t winning the game, I totally agree, but the post I was responding to (Elk’s #12) was talking what China can do after it’s already kicked Japan out. The answer: not much apart from providing landing zones.

    Japan can still turtle up on Japan proper, skirmish in the pacific where practical, and bee line to Egypt to facilitate a European victory. China can’t do anything about that, other than reduce Japan’s income so that it can’t skirmish as well in the Pacific when the bulk of its oomph heads to Africa.


  • Customizer

    One time when I was playing on the Allied side, Japan spent more money on ships and was busy taking the money islands and fighting with the US Navy. As a result, China took all their territories back plus occupied Kwangtung. Then they just kept buying infantry and stacking it all along the coast just in case Japan got brave and tried a landing.
    Then a weird thing happened. Germany captured Moscow and had a fair-sized stack of tanks and mechs left. So, they shot over and started conquering a bunch of Chinese territories with hardly any fight because all the Chinese forces were along the coast. We had a heck of a time getting those pesky Germans out of China.
    Ever since that game, if it happens that Japan is kicked out of China and China starts building lots of infantry just piling up, now whomever plays China will spread the infantry around and stack up the westernmost territories as well as the coast. That way if Germany (or even Italy) comes a knockin’, then they will have a fight on their hands.


  • '15

    @teslas:

    Japan isn’t winning the game, I totally agree, but the post I was responding to (Elk’s #12) was talking what China can do after it’s already kicked Japan out. The answer: not much apart from providing landing zones.

    Japan can still turtle up on Japan proper, skirmish in the pacific where practical, and bee line to Egypt to facilitate a European victory. China can’t do anything about that, other than reduce Japan’s income so that it can’t skirmish as well in the Pacific when the bulk of its oomph heads to Africa.

    Got it.  I’d like to see China be allowed to go into FIC.  Would spice things up a bit down there!


  • 2019 2018 2017 '16

    @Nippon-koku:

    Got it.  I’d like to see China be allowed to go into FIC.  Would spice things up a bit down there!

    Don’t forget that Chinese forces can enter Burma even while Japan is not at war with the UK and ANZAC. This is a nice surprise that some folks don’t think of.

    Marsh



  • I always play depending on what the Japanese do, are they putting large numbers of units in Manchuria and Korea?, are they about to knock China out and have a big force on the Russian border? If Japan makes these moves I say build up using mech from Moscow and maybe a couple of tanks (if you can spare them) and either attack if you think it will give the Allies a big advantage and hurt japan bad or just dig in and wait for the attack. If Japan does not put any big numbers facing Russia then I like to send units west gradully. yes it takes time but I have had games where I was able to save Moscow using those troops so it can work out much like it did historically.



  • Well it only takes them 7 turns to get to moscow ( that is the closest 6 inf )

    That is 6 turns that they are not doing anything or even putting pressure anywhere. That is pretty wastefull, they are better served near the japanese border 18 inf and 2 AA can help out US once they take korea or it can help china by taking machuria. And it can prevent 1 lonely tank from taking 9 ipcs away from russia.

    They wont do much good against a compentent german player and against a incompentent german player you dont need them anyway.



  • @Marshmallow:

    @Nippon-koku:

    Got it.  I’d like to see China be allowed to go into FIC.  Would spice things up a bit down there!

    Don’t forget that Chinese forces can enter Burma even while Japan is not at war with the UK and ANZAC. This is a nice surprise that some folks don’t think of.

    Marsh

    They’ve got to get there first, and other than landing the fighter there, it would be extraordinary to see the Chinese able to move their slow units through Yunnan that early in the game.


  • 2019 2017 '16

    @SubmersedElk:

    Last game I played the Axis player basically ignored China entirely other than to move troops through to attack India. I had a great Chinese stack plus the Russian stack eating up all the Chinese territories, but sadly it did me no good as he ruthlessly exploited the fact that his airbase/factory setup in FIC could not be attacked by Chinese troops, and moved on to conquer India and then Egypt. It was undescribably lame, but those are the game rules so I can’t blame him for playing by them.

    What do you do with 40+ Chinese units that have already conquered every territory they can move into?

    Am I missing something? You can move them in to Burma and block the troops coming from FIC from a land route to Calcutta. As Mm of War has pointed out.

    I’m guessing in this game your Chinese units were caught out of position and couldn’t reach Burma in time to save Calcutta. A learning experience, I imagine.



  • it’s been a while so I don’t remember all that clearly but IIRC the UK stack got wiped as a sacrifice so the Chinese could gain superiority on land, and he responded by bringing a big transport fleet and lots of air to Calcutta where the Chinese couldn’t help.

    It’s extremely frustrating to have a potent Chinese stack sitting on Yunnan right next to a vulnerable IC/airbase in FIC and not being able to attack.


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