Question for Germany-Italy player

  • Here is a question I have; is Southern France, with its naval base and industrial complex, better for Germany or Italy?

    Italy needs the IPCs. Germany could use the naval base to help in North Africa in support-enter Rommel.

    Your thoughts and experiences are needed.

  • Customizer

    It really depends on what your strategy is.
    If I’m Germany, I will often leave Southern France to Italy. For one, like you said, Italy can really use those IPCs. Secondly, I don’t tend to help Italy in the Med very much. As Germany, I focus most of my attention on either England or Russia and don’t like to send any resources down south.
    However, a lot of players like to help Italy in the Med so they will capture Southern France with Germany. They use the factory to send U-Boats into the Med to help Italy keep more of it’s fleet. It’s also a good way for Germany to build a transport + a land unit and put that land unit in Egypt once Italy takes it so Germany can get that extra NO that is usually all but impossible for them to get.
    I know it’s not historical to not have an Afrika Korps but the game mechanics don’t represent the poor performance of an outnumbering Italian force in N. Africa (Italians outnumbered the Brits 6-1 and still got their butts handed to them) or the superior performance of the Royal Navy vs. the Italian Navy, particularly in radar guided guns. So, I tend to let Italy handle the Med and Africa on their own. Italy’s only downfall in this game is their low income.

  • 2019 2017 '16

    Being somewhat new to the game I’m slowly beginning to see the method to the madness in Germany taking S France.

    All the reasons knp just listed are part of the argument, but what really clinches it for me is that when the Allies get their bid they logically use it - at least in part - to beef up the Mediterranean. Having even a small German presence down there goes a long way towards neutralizing the long-term effects of that.

    Plus, Italy already has two factories and a harbour in the Med, so S France helps Germany while it’s largely redundant to Italy.

  • If you’re going to help Italy in the Med with Germany, then taking Southern France with Germany makes sense.

    However, Germany really has its plate full and shouldn’t be spending any IPC in the Med. It can’t overrun Russia while building ships.

    Also, Southern France isn’t a great place to build anyway, no airbase cover and easy to strike for the Allies’ Atlantic fleet. If you’ve got the extra IPC for ships you may as well do it right and build an IC in Yugoslavia for that purpose.

    If you were only planning to build a couple of ships down there, it’s better to leave Italy with the 2 income and let it use that to help build its own ships, or swing your fleet around Gibraltar in G2.

  • Is the question worth a poll?

  • If I remember correctly, there was an extensive discussion of this subject on this forum page some time in the last couple of monthes.  I don’t think a poll will really be needed if you look back.  It is a matter of your stratergy.

  • Thanks for the info, I will research that.

  • 2019 2018 2017

    The earlier topic is here:

    I personally lean towards giving it to Italy for much the same reasons that knp7765 already gave. But I have to say that there are also good reasons to let Germany have it. So I’m not much help here I’m afraid.

  • I like Italy to have it, as their forces are there and ready, and the Axis needs to mop us Europe as quickly as possible.

    I know it’s a little bit outside the norm, but I take Greece with Germany, typically, and then if UK is going bonkers in the Egypt area, investing in an IC and Airbase in Greece will do wonders for controlling the Med. Check out a few of my newer league games to see it in action.

    Six aircraft protecting fleet in SZ 97… the ability to project Axis air power deep into Russia, the abilit to build a well times sub, destroyer, or transport into the Med. It really makes life more challenging for the Allied player who was feeling comfortable with taking out the Med and pressuring Italy.

    So, Italy for Southern France 🙂

  • I respectfully disagree with the assertion that Germany cannot afford to spend IPCs in the Mediterranean, and for this reason I heavily favour Germany taking Southern France. 2 to 3 subs will not break the bank and it goes a very long way to assisting the Italians in their primary theater. Yes, there is no air base to provide cover, but you are, at most, only losing subs. Additionally, leaving a sub in SZ 92 will at least require a 1-2 from the Western Allies to get to SZ 93, and that alone can be enough to dissuade them depending on the board situation.

    There are a few other reasons I like taking Southern France as the Germans. If you take it on G1, you can start producing units as early as G2 - this is not possible with a minor complex in Yugoslavia. Secondly, the naval base in that territory gives you a very impressive range of movement. You can make it all the way to 98 in the Eastern Mediterranean, and on the Western end you can sneak through into 91 with your subs even if Gibraltar is under Allied control. With a few aircraft stationed in Southern Italy, you should have at least one good opportunity throughout the course of the game to create serious havoc for the Allies.

  • subs don’t block, a sub in SZ92 does nothing to prevent Allied access to SZ93

  • @SubmersedElk:

    subs don’t block, a sub in SZ92 does nothing to prevent Allied access to SZ93

    They absolutely block. A sub in 92 means destroyers can’t go all the way to 93, and if they go to 93 without the destroyers you can just submerge and hit them back on your turn with air support.

  • Destroyers aren’t forced to stop in a SZ with subs in it. Subs don’t make a SZ hostile, so any sea units can travel through it without problem.

  • @creeping-deth87:


    subs don’t block, a sub in SZ92 does nothing to prevent Allied access to SZ93

    They absolutely block. A sub in 92 means destroyers can’t go all the way to 93, and if they go to 93 without the destroyers you can just submerge and hit them back on your turn with air support.

    Subs don’t block, full stop.

    Even if they did, the DDs could move through in noncombat and cover the fleet.

    Moreover it would be a waste of effort to block. Allies don’t land in Southern France because it’s a poor landing spot in a very target rich environment.

    If you want to block a SZ the least expensive (and most effective) unit for that purpose is a destroyer.

  • K, maybe I should rephrase. They don’t block in the conventional sense of stopping you from going somewhere, but if you’re putting 3 subs a turn into 93 and you’re worried about losing them all to an attack, a sub in 92 saves them because the other player will have to clear the blocking sub with their destroyers. It’s true that everything that ISN’T a destroyer can sail right past 92 into 93, but then you can just submerge and there’s no threat of attack anyway. And finally, the destroyers in this case would not be able to non-combat move into 93 either because they fought in 92 to kill the blocker and because you can’t non-combat move into a territory with enemy ships, which the subs would be.

    So no, not a ‘true’ blocker in the conventional sense of the word, but adequate enough to ensure your subs can get the pounce on something.

  • Which brings us back to subs not blocking destroyer movement.

  • How do they not block destroyer movement? Destroyers can’t move past subs without initiating a combat. That’s blocking.

  • Yes they can. Destroyers can move past subs without initiating a combat.

  • I stand corrected. I could have sworn there was a stipulation that destroyers couldn’t ignore subs. In any case, I was wrong and apologize for the misinformation. I still think subs out of 93 is a good idea though.

  • 2019 2017 '16

    I think there needs to be a rule clarification that sea units can’t move through a space which was hostile at the start of the turn on the non combat movement. Moving into that space is fair enough. I guess the same should apply to land units but it is difficult to envisage a situation which it would occur.

    And what about if combat occurred with subs/transports, should you be able to move through that space on non combat movement? In fact, I can’t see in the rules if anything stops you moving through the space on combat movement. And shouldn’t subs make a sea space hostile to an unescorted transport?

  • That would be a pretty big change though. Completely destabilizing in the Pacific. Destroyers would be extremely valuable. So many times I’ve cleared a Japanese destroyer and moved my whole fleet into SZ 6 in non-combat.

    And it would change the ground game a bit too. I can remember a few times when playing as Germany when in Russian territory, and many times playing as Japan when fighting in Chinese territory where it was useful to use some infantry to take a territory and then move ahead two spaces with mechs/tanks into a friendly territory.

    Also imagine playing as the UK and you decide to attack Iraq, but leave 1 mech behind to move through in non-combat to activate Persia.

  • 2019 2017 '16

    I would presume that it is only changing it to what was intended in the rules. I play it as a local rule/interpretation. I cannot comprehend why the idea that you can can open then move through on non combat was intentional.

  • I take S. France as Germany and build subs. I use the subs from S France and the S Bombers from western Germany to smash any allied fleet that wants to park in SZ 91. This denies a strategic location for the allies unless they are prepared to build a sizable escort for their transports drawing funds away from the pacific. This also allows Italy to hold some NO’s early game without having to invest in a large fleet. The S bombers i am already purchasing for strategic raids on London and keeping the Atlantic clear anyway. building 5-6 subs is cheap considering the damage you could inflict on an allied fleet in SZ 91 not to mention the boost Italy will get.

  • 2019 2017 '16

    Interesting possibility. You need to thin out other attacks and use up some mobile troops to get into S France on turn one.

    I’ve never thought all that was worthwhile before but it might be if you can smash some forces off Gibraltar. Although you can still do so by building subs in SZ112. This relies on making a contribution to clearing the Med which I’ve never found to be a problem for Italy. With an allied bid adding sub(s) to the Med seems to be the reason for this one.

  • Germany helping Italy in the Med all depends on if you are looking to knock Russia out with a quick punch or throttle them slowly to death. If you’re taking the long game approach, a German fleet in the Med is worth every IPC. It creates an incredible headache for the Allied player who expects to dominate the Med early. Then it becomes an arms race, and guess who is closer to their supply lines?

    And once the Med becomes an arms race, the Allied player often stops buying as much with the US in the Pacific… and Japan can wear down Russia from the back.

    Just general thoughts - game by game will obviously be variable.

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