USA Priorities



  • Hello everyone. I have a question in regards to where the USA should spend its first few rounds of IPC’s. Should they spend all in either the Atlantic or Pacific depending on a KGF or KJF strategy? Or should it be split half/half each round? Or perhaps on one turn all go to either Atlantic or Pacific then the next turn go all on the other side of the board? This might effect the effort negatively in terms of putting IPC’s into the Pacific on a KGF strategy or vise-versa. But I am assuming the USA would need to post some sort of threat on the opposite side of where it’s intents lay. Thanks.



  • Hi Protest,

    almost always you should invest everything either in the pacific or europe. If you split it, chances are very high that you loose on both fronts.

    Since the US is the strongest starting power (and will seldom drop under 38/40 IPCs) they play a very important role. Their disadvantage is that it takes a long time for them to send troops to the Eurasian mainland. As I have seen many times now and which workes for me is an IC in China to help fighting the japanese on the mainland. It is only one unit a turn but can make a significant difference!

    What many players suggest is also an SBR strategy: You build as many bombers as possible and bomb germany. I am not a fan of this strategy since it can be really painful if the Germany player is lucky and shots down your bombers like turkeys.

    What I often do is building a navy in the pacific that depends on aircraft-carrier + fighters. With fighters you stay flexible, since they can attack navy and can intervene in land battle if neccessary (and if possible since the japanese navy is still a threat.

    I hope that helps a bit, I think there is a huge amount of topics that deal with an US strategy!


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    It’s a good question. I think the two most important things to keep in mind when deciding how to divvy up the USA’s resources are (1) choose one theater in which to try to seize an Axis capital, and (2) have a specific goal in mind for the other theater.

    For example, let’s say you are trying to take Berlin. Almost all your troops will have to go into the Atlantic – but you could choose one small goal to try to achieve in the Pacific, like “reinforce Honolulu to keep the victory city,” or “send subs to stop Japan from sending transports around without escorts,” or “keep India in British hands until turn 5,” or even something very modest, like “build enough infantry to protect Alaska and the Western US from a Japanese invasion.” Whatever small goal you choose has to be something you can accomplish for an average of 12 IPCs per turn or less.

    Let’s say you are trying to take Tokyo. Almost all your troops will have to go into the Pacific – but you could choose one small goal to try to achieve in the Atlantic, like “liberate North Africa” or “send fighters to guard an early British carrier” or “send fighters to hold West Russia until turn 5.”

    If you try to split your resources 50/50, 60/40, or even 67/33, you’re not going to take a capital on either side, and Moscow will still eventually fall. If you’re looking for a game that lets you split your resources evenly as America, I recommend the Anniversary Edition!


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    Mmmm! A different answer to further the debate. In my experience:

    • The allies can focus on KGF or KJF without looking to protect Moscow. After-all the UK & US combined can hope to beat one axis power on its own. This approach can make for a fast moving game. 8-)

    • Personally, however, my first priority is to keep Russia in the game. Because on the 1942.2 map Moscow can be attacked from both east and west, a co-ordinated axis strategy on Russia can take it out before the allies succeed in capturing Berlin or Tokyo. In which case the allies are losing.

    • This means that the allies need to adopt a balanced global strategy, deploying just enough resource in each theatre to demand G and J counter investment. For example US Pacific builds will draw J into naval investment that steals resources away from attacks on Russia and India.

    • Then the balance of resources devoted to either KGF or KJF. Building on the above example, the US can soak up a lot of J naval builds while still making a worthwhile contribution in Europe. 🙂



  • Thank you all for your replies. My friends and I have played this game a handful of times now, with an intent arguement by myself to incorporate bidding the Allies have won the last two games. However that was more due to Russia holding its capital and the UK helping out on that part. The thing with the USA is a smart German player will ignore the UK Destroyer and Tank in SZ 10 and go after the USA Destroyer and 2 Transports. That means USA has a Cruiser at the very edge of the Atlantic to start. USA1 is building, USA2 is sending to Africa or middle of the Atlantic in hopes of a Europe raid or building some more depending on what the Germans are doing on the water and how the UK has done dealing with that. And if Japan decides to Pearl(have yet to see it in this game) then the USA is getting removed from both theatres before it has a chance to play its first turn. I did play the USA on one of the Allied wins and used my bid to try and hold China a little longer. Perhaps I should’ve went on water?

    Again thanks for the replies. Next game I am USA I will take this all into thought. I believe I will try focusing on one theatre and see how that works out. I do like the “small goal” idea for the opposite side of the map.



  • I’ve always found the USA the most difficult nation to play because you always have to plan everything 3-4 turns out. 
    I try to stay flexible and leave options open for action in either theater and keep them guessing.  That way neither Axis power can let their guard down.  Airpower is nice in that it can be quickly shifted.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    @cloud7707:

    As I have seen many times now and which workes for me is an IC in China to help fighting the japanese on the mainland.

    100% agree - in Sinkiang. Can use a few Soviet troops to help hold it particularly for the first turns. I also fly some fighters Alaska-Yakut-Sinkiang and retreat the Soviet soldier in the far east to Yakut - the combined arms force is not easy to take down.

    I also reckon the US needs to make taking down the money islands (East Indies, Philippines and Borneo) a pretty high priority.

    An Atlantic buy of a Carrier - even if it holds UK fighters is also pretty much a must US1.

    I normally use the cruiser in the Pacific. So I’d say I tend to recommend about 80% Pacific. UK doesn’t have much money and a carrier makes a pretty big difference. Add a DD and some transports (for Africa and/or Norway) are also tactics that I like, but be careful to execute them properly. I find it doesn’t take much for the Axis to grab the advantage on this map.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    That’s a fascinating strategy, Simon. I like the idea of the Soviet-American ‘roadblock’ in Yakut combined with the Soviet-American outpost in Siankiang. I could see it working if Japan failed to defeat the Flying Tigers in Szechuan on J1 and Germany got middling-to-poor rolls in both eastern Europe and Egypt on G1.

    Otherwise you’re talking about committing over 50 Allied IPCs to hold a region (China) that’s worth 5 IPCs per turn at most. The IC in Sinkiang is 15 IPCs, sending two fighters via Alaska is another 20 IPCs, building 1 inf and 1 art in the Sinkiang factory is 7 IPCs, and loaning 3 Russian infantry to help hold the factory is another 9 IPCs, for a minimum total of 51 IPCs. The price tag goes up if you want any American tanks in China, or if you include the opportunity cost of the Flying Tiger fighter that could otherwise be flown to India or West Russia. It sounds like it would be a lot of fun for all players, but a very inefficient strategy for the Allies.

    If I were playing the Axis against that opening, I would totally ignore China and Siberia. I would probably have Japan build a sub and a destroyer to secure the Pacific Ocean (it won’t take much more than that since most of the USA’s early cash is going to China and Siberia), and then spend the rest of my cash blitzing toward India, Egypt, and the Caucasus. The UK will have to choose between invading Europe and defending India – without more help from the US than just a single carrier, they can’t do both. If the UK invades Europe, then Germany can trade France/Norway pretty comfortably and wait for Japan to turn into a monster. If the UK defends India, then Germany can seize Africa, Karelia, and the Caucasus. Russia will be very weak around turn 4-5 because the infantry that starts in Kazakh and Novosibirsk will be late to the front (since they were in Siankiang for 2-3 turns), and the infantry that starts in the Soviet Far East / Yakut / Buryatia will also be late to the front (since they were in Yakut for 2-3 turns).

    You will probably pick up the money islands by turn 4 or 5 as the USA, and you might be able to trade Manchuria / Kiangsu after a while, but even with all that I still think you’re down on income because of your expected losses on the mainland.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    I do agree that Norway should be targeted at as early a point as possible. Probably the only thing more important than the money islands besides holding Sinkiang.

    US production is worth far less than any other powers’, although an IC on Norway does take the edge off this. I think the one in Sinkiang has a smaller effect - I only buy tanks there.

    I just find without some sort of effort in China, Japan just walks through it and weakens Moscow. for a knock out blow by Germany (or vice versa).

    What has made this map less relevant for me is that the Allies pretty much need to attack SZ37 UK1 and have it come out even or to their advantage. If it goes the axis’ way, even slightly, the game is pretty much already lost. If the battle is not engaged and you can’t sink something else, also lost (barring exceptional luck). Perhaps the game would work OK with a 6 bid to the allies - throw in another sub to this attack and also amphibiously assault East Indies UK1. Still, if the battle is lost, then so is the game. It’s 77-80% to the Allies - if you fail I guess you could call it an Axis victory and start again.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    I mean, it depends on your playing style. If you’re unwilling to organize a fighting retreat for Russia and the British colonies – if you insist on holding or taking ground on every front from turn 1, or if it’s a dealbreaker for you that Moscow will probably fall on turn 7 or 8 (four hours into the game, usually), then yeah, you need to win in SZ37 and pull radical stunts like building American ICs in both Norway and Sinkiang.

    On the other hand, if you’re comfortable with Russian infantry stacks and with a Britain that has a humble income on turns 2-4 while it builds up a marine corps / navy that can start picking up 6+ IPCs / turn in Europe, then I think the game works fine and has lots of strategic possibilities.

    I mean, obviously, if you ignore the Chinese front, then Japan will waltz through China, and that weakens Russia. So what? If you ignore the Ukrainian front, then Germany will waltz through Ukraine, and that weakens Russia. What makes the game interesting for the Allies in the opening is that they can’t be everywhere at once, so they have to choose where they’re willing to accept some losses.

    I think 6 IPCs is the correct bid for the Allies to keep things balanced, but they certainly don’t have to spend it on an Indian sub if they don’t want to. Infantry in Egypt, Trans-Jordan, Persia, Karelia, Caucasus, Hawaii, Szechuan, and/or Eastern Canada are all perfectly plausible bids.



  • Well I had a chance to test one of these theories in a game and seen another way play out as I played the axis in another game. I played a one on one game and took the Allies and won with the Allies. I didn’t spend a single USA IPC in the Pacific and went 100% Atlantic. I put the SZ 19 Cruiser into the Pacific and to add to the fact that Germany ignored my USA transports I built and stayed put turn 1. Probably note that on UK1 I ignored SZ37 and brought my fleet into the Med and sunk the German battleship. The Australian fleet picked up two infantry and started heading towards the Atlantic(sz21 way). By the time the UK and USA were ready to hop into Europe the Germans had not taken Russia yet and were finished. Japan was a total monster, but my 3 VC I needed were right in Europe. Japan couldn’t get there in time, Germany were too Far East to retreat in time. Done deal.

    In the other game I took out the USA transports on G1 and waited to see what the build would be. By usa2 I knew I had won the game when the USA went 100% Atlantic turn 1 and 100% pacific turn 2. Two fully loaded transports is no enough to make a dent into Europe, especially if the German player is buying some infantry every turn along with the offence. Did I take Moscow? No I didn’t but I didn’t need to. Karelia, India and Hawaii was all I needed.

    This Norway factory sounds intriguing to me. I don’t think I’d put an IC in China though. Agreed that a wall needs to be made in some way to protect Russia from Japan but 15 IPCs is expensive.Especially since Japan doesn’t really need to take it and just go under it to get to Russia.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    @ProtesT:

    Probably note that on UK1 I ignored SZ37 and brought my fleet into the Med and sunk the German battleship.

    If Germany moves the Battleship to the Eastern Med square, they should take down Transjordan to prevent this.



  • @simon33:

    If Germany moves the Battleship to the Eastern Med square, they should take down Transjordan to prevent this.

    They indeed tried. They took the Inf and Art from Southern Europe on their transport and rolled absolutely terrible. If I remember correctly we had about 12 or 15 rounds of combat. The UK infantry was still standing at the end as well. Mind you I rolled horrible too because it took me 12 or 15 rounds to kill his inf and art.

    Also if planning on doing this I find a purchase of a Destroyer in sz15 for Germany can be wise as it will block the UK Cruiser from sz14 from coming into the battle as well. Also works if you go sz14 on your attack as well. But that’s a different strategy for another time perhaps.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    To not take down the territory is a 13% chance. I would expect that represents an acceptable risk.


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