North American Axis Strategy - Kill US First - Legal Or Not?

  • '22 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 '12

    WOW~ !  :-o

    This is a lot of rancor over a move that is itself insanely speculative. So what if Japan moves to 26 without declaring war?  The US falls back and deploys blockers.  Game over. The Japanese have no option now but to attack or have their fleet way out of position for many turns!

    Taking Hawaii Japan’s first turn at war is a huge gift to the US.  It sits right next to the US major factory, and the US can dump huge amounts of stuff to take it back, forcing Japan to respond in kind if they want to even try to keep it.  Meanwhile, the Allies are moving in for the kill in the rest of Asia.

    Saying it’s stupid that the US can’t declare ware if Japan moves to 26 is unfounded.  If the Pearl Harbor strike fleet had been discovered on its way, do you think the US would unilaterally declare war?

    I doubt it.

    Sure, the US would demand answers, go on high alert and deploy the fleet in a defensive mode, which would have made the strike pointless.  The Pearl Harbor strike force only had modest surface escort and would have been no match for a US fleet alert to its presence, with the 2 carriers and hundreds of land based planes now buzzing around.


  • @Hunter:

    And have you noticed, it only said this in the ENGLISH version of the rulebook as one of the first replies pointed out?

    I’m not seeing this.  Which reply?

    But is it unusual that an English speaker who buys an English game printed in English with English rules should use the English rulebook as their source?

    Am I to locate a translated rulebook, have it translated back, and then override the original rulebook where applicable?


  • @Hunter:

    And have you noticed, it only said this in the ENGLISH version of the rulebook as one of the first replies pointed out?

    “Only” in the English version of the rulebook? I am aware of only one official rulebook, and this is the one provided by AH, English for sure.

    Please point me to any translated versions you might have in mind. Would be interesting to see and maybe an interesting read…


  • @P@nther:

    “Only” in the English version of the rulebook? I am aware of only one official rulebook, and this is the one provided by AH, English for sure.

    Surely Hasbro’s rulesbook translation team are better suited to reflect the designer intent than those hacks who wrote the actual rules!  :?

    This thread is just not sane.

  • '17

    @Karl7:

    Taking Hawaii Japan’s first turn at war is a huge gift to the US.� � It sits right next to the US major factory, and the US can dump huge amounts of stuff to take it back, forcing Japan to respond in kind if they want to even try to keep it.� � Meanwhile, the Allies are moving in for the kill in the rest of Asia.

    Karl, I was the guy who started this post. I think you’re missing a few details in the conversation. For instance, I started this post because I thought that the Japanese placement of ships on turn 1 and or prior to DOW was illegal. That was the main reason. Second, I never said Japan never took Hawaii initially. In fact they hit the US fleet at SZ10 first and landed on Alaska, but that was to remove a NO from the US without losing any units in exchange. Hawaii is initially ignored. But after the US was brought into the war the US couldn’t afford to purchase 10 ground units for western US because Germany was ready to strike Washington. If fact, I had to abandon western US and move what was remaining to the capital. They ignored Hawaii as Japan needed every ground and air unit for their main targets.

    Anyways, regarding this strategy, it did catch me off guard and my first thoughts were like, this guy is throwing the game :) Some of the things you mentioned as the answer(s) to best deter this strategy didn’t work after having played against it. I did some of the stuff you mentioned. Also, you’re speaking from the point of view from the outside, not experiencing it. The Axis sacked Washington 2x which meant game over; the 1st time was by Japan, the 2nd time by Germany. This strategy will only work by surprise and expected “normal” responses. I agree though that it would now be easy to defeat.

    If this happens to you, you won’t have the time nor be able to build enough blockers with the US on the Western side unless your blocking with carriers, battleship, cruisers…expensive ships because you don’t start out with enough destroyers. The strategy calls for 3 Japanese fleets to approach completely spread out. Only one Japanese fleet is in SZ 26. Japan is able to bring enough cannon fodder to hit whatever they need to and mostly take plane hits to save ships and non-com other units through sea zones that the US could block. It’s a gambit, so of course the Japanese player is going to sacrifice a lot of air up front. They start out with 20 planes.

    From going through the file with other good players, we agreed that the best solution would be to retreat all vessels to the Atlantic and use that to defend Washington and SE MEXICO from an Italian landing. This slows down the German threat because they won’t have a large navy, just usually 1 carrier, maybe 1 battleships, 1 cruiser, and maybe 1 other war ships (plus lots of transports). Interestingly enough, Italy landed on Mexico to create a landing spot for German planes. The US Pacific Navy brought over, plus a few more things would be enough to defend Washington. But your initial instinct would be to not retreat completely out of the Pacific if Japan ever approaches the US west coast on turn 1. But it’s best to abandon out of the Pacific (Japan is way behind anyways, because the UK Pac/ANZAC are going to DOW on turn 1). On the western side you buy all air/ground and stack all the units that can get to Western US (tank from Washington) and central US units there because Japan doesn’t start out with very many transports in range. But this is still tough because everyone here decided that Japan is NOT RESTRICTED, so their carrier bases planes are within range of hitting the US mainland (not just SZ10) and then non-combat 1 movement space into zones cleared (even if you left blockers). You will sacrifice Hawaii to them, by letting them walk on, but that’s ok as everyone noted, this is a horrible strategy for the Axis if it fails. If I see Japan do this move, with the Canadian minor IC, I will start buying some units on UK 1 to help defend Washington besides London. So on UK 1, my purchase would be all ground, some for Canada, and most for London.

    Now you might think that this strategy really sets the allies behind because of all of these defensive purchases. It wouldn’t because in other areas the rest of the allies are raging.

    I have the triplea file if you want it. Send me a PM. Unfortunately my file save only goes through round 3, but its enough to show you how the Axis started approaching Washington. I wish I had the whole thing. At first I thought Sea Lion was coming, then Cairo, then I realized it was Washington, which made my critical US purchases wrong and out of order. Also, I initially thought I could defend Hawaii which wasn’t a good idea and wasted time.

  • '22 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 '12

    Yeah, I get it.

    My point about Hawaii was only if they end up not going after the US, then taking Hawaii is the fall back.

    I guess if Japan approached in spread out formation, you’d have to block 3 sea zones, so you’d have to lose a cruiser to fully block a landing in WUS.

    Why wouldn’t that have worked to trip them up?  If you stop them from being able to sack WUS turn 2, isn’t that game over?

    Also, you only need to block 2 sea zones on the atlantic side if they are launching from Gibraltar.  Doable if you got a UK ship handy.

    Finally, you’ve got 52 bucks US1, not to mention 5 ftrs, 1 tacb you can stack around for defense. You also got 4UK land units to help out. The German’s had three transports w/6 units for landing?  Not really much if you stack EUS w/10 land + 3/4 fighters and 2 AA.

    I’m willing to be wrong on this.

    Also, let me clear, getting caught off guard happens to all of us.  Going for the US is an all or nothing move, so I could see how one would discount the possibility.

    That being said, I wonder if capturing the US would still result in an Axis win. By the time it would work (round 3/4?), I would think the other Allies have become monsters with Russia and UK closing in on Germany for the Kill and Japan close to completely knocked off Asia.

    If anyone wants to try it, I’ll agree to play a straight up OOB G40 2nd as the allies on triple a.  We could agree to some conditions, i.e.  moves I can’t make as the allies to make the attack even feasible.

    PM me if interested.

  • '17

    @Karl7:

    Yeah, I get it.

    I guess if Japan approached in spread out formation, you’d have to block 3 sea zones, so you’d have to lose a cruiser to fully block a landing in WUS.

    Why wouldn’t that have worked to trip them up?�  If you stop them from being able to sack WUS turn 2, isn’t that game over?

    Also, you only need to block 2 sea zones on the atlantic side if they are launching from Gibraltar.�  Doable if you got a UK ship handy.

    Finally, you’ve got 52 bucks US1, not to mention 5 ftrs, 1 tacb you can stack around for defense. You also got 4UK land units to help out. The German’s had three transports w/6 units for landing?�  � Not really much if you stack EUS w/10 land + 3/4 fighters and 2 AA.

    I’m willing to be wrong on this.� Â

    Also, let me clear, getting caught off guard happens to all of us.�  Going for the US is an all or nothing move, so I could see how one would discount the possibility.� Â

    That being said, I wonder if capturing the US would still result in an Axis win. By the time it would work (round 3/4?), I would think the other Allies have become monsters with Russia and UK closing in on Germany for the Kill and Japan close to completely knocked off Asia.

    If anyone wants to try it, I’ll agree to play a straight up OOB G40 2nd as the allies on triple a.�  We could agree to some conditions, i.e.�  moves I can’t make as the allies to make the attack even feasible.

    PM me if interested.

    I don’t completely disagree to a lot of what your saying. I’m not that good of a player. But I reacted to what would normally be considered the “responsible” moves and it didn’t work.

    Also, in this gambit, Japan is willing to sacrifice planes to take a lot of stuff out…and then can replenish the empty carriers. I still think the best move is to abandon the Pacific…having now played against this surprised strike and lost. I had large stacks of ground units…but bought too many boats in US turns 1-2 that were easily sunk by Japan.

    Yes, you have 52 IPCs, but if the first turn is 3 expensive warships on the Western US, instead of purchasing 3 fighters, 2 armor, 1 mech, 2 infantry, then you’re already behind in my opinion. My speculation on this is based on having played a game…maybe I’m the one that’s wrong. But like I said, I went through the file with other players, all better than me, and we all agreed what I wrote is a good plan to DEFEAT this strategy and like all said result in a failed Axis gambit. I mentioned that Berlin was almost captured…but it wasn’t. The US capital was captured on like Turn 4, then turn 6. And by that time the US wasn’t making much more than maybe 28 ICPs and most of it’s Major ICs have been reduced to minor ICs. I guess with Russia I should have bought an IC in Ukraine but I didn’t. At a certain point, it’s still hard to capture Germany due to the fact that Russia is going a very long distance from their ICs that can produce at total of only 6 while Germany can drop 10 on it’s capital. Also, Russia, doesn’t get to DOW until Turn 4 in this game anyways.

    Regarding your last point, could the Allies still win without North America due to being way ahead everywhere else. I really don’t think so. The amount of money their collecting makes up for all of the losses and territory they’re normally supposed to gain. Plus, it’s mostly a 1 front war then for both Japan and Germany. Germany sacked Washington, then I gave up as Russia wasn’t large enough to get Berlin. I think I sent too much forces Scandinavia and into the Balkans to get money, meanwhile, Germany was spending a lot on infantry defense. Germany had enough money to start producing lots of tanks. And without the threat of a major landing by the US…it’s just academic at that point. For Japan, yes, they lost the money islands and China was huge. But they had a large fleet and the money from Hawaii, Alaska, western US (10 alone there), Panama, with which to fight for the islands to get their income even higher. Again, it’s merely academic. In most games I’ve played on triplea, Sea Lion results in an Axis victory. On this forum, everyone says it means Axis death. Well, the US isn’t getting liberated as 3rd time (Canada Liberated the US the first time). All fighters from London we’re flown over…ect.

    I’m not one to provide a good demonstration on, but I’d be willing to try against you on tiplea. If you want to do the PBEM style that’s fine, I just don’t know how to set it up. You have to keep in mind it’s purely for demonstration purposes…so as a condition, I’d need you to react like you don’t think Washington DC is the target in order to see it. If for instance the UK transport in sZ106 survives, you should be bringing forces over to the UK…ext. If Germany can still do Sea Lion, build more on London. Remember, demonstration purposes only. Obviously if you know straight up that all 3 Axis forces are all going for Washington DC then it might not work.

  • '18 '17 '16

    I still don’t think that it is a legal move. So far nobody has proven otherwise. Just because the computer let you do it doesn’t make it a legal move. An ambiguously written sentence doesn’t prove it either when you consider how ridiculous it would be to park the Japanese fleet in Pearl Harbour with fully loaded transports. I understand that many things in this game don’t make sense and that some things had to be done a certain way in order to make the game playable, but this is not that. I will only believe it when we get an official interpretation of the rule. and an explanation of how stupid the American commanders had to be in order to allow that to happen.

    The RCN never had any flying pirate ships. Clearly only a strict neutral can possess them.


  • @GeneralHandGrenade:

    I still don’t think that it is a legal move. So far nobody has proven otherwise. Just because the computer let you do it doesn’t make it a legal move. An ambiguously written sentence doesn’t prove it either when you consider how ridiculous it would be to park the Japanese fleet in Pearl Harbour with fully loaded transports. I understand that many things in this game don’t make sense and that some things had to be done a certain way in order to make the game playable, but this is not that. I will only believe it when we get an official interpretation of the rule. and an explanation of how stupid the American commanders had to be in order to allow that to happen.

    The RCN never had any flying pirate ships. Clearly only a strict neutral can possess them.

    Nothing more official than the rulebook:

    @rulebook:

    When not yet at war with the United States, in addition
    to the normal restrictions (see “Powers Not at War with One Another,” page 14), Japan may not end the movement of its sea
    units within 2 sea zones of the United States’ mainland territories (Western United States and Alaska).

    But as you see something ambiguous here, I can additionally confirm that this issue has been officially cleared by Krieghund already back in 2012:
    See http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=19919.msg959504#msg959504

    HTH :-)

  • '17

    GHG,

    I lean the way you’re speaking too. I don’t believe the axis and allies community is going to get a supreme court ruling by LH. I see the points other people make in how they interpret the language of the rule book.

    But I see your point too. I guess it really depends upon your definition of “is.” (Anyone out there get my reference there?)

    Technically if you’re on SZ 26, you’re not “within” 2 sea zones of sea zone 10, but your still “within” a travel distance of 2 spaces to sea zone 10. I think the intent of the rule was too keep Japan back far enough to where they couldn’t move 2 spaces and land troops on western US. SZ 26 would fall into that category.

    No one has argued or made a point of even why the rule was even written in the first place SINCE it actually doesn’t stop Japan and block them like the way that the US is restricted in the Atlantic. It seems to me that a loophole exists which wasn’t intended to exist. I think someone else agreed at least that this is a loophole (which means to me to be against the spirit of the game).

    Now back to realism for a brief moment. The actual Japanese Pearl Harbor attack was a well planned, executed, sneak attack. The US Commanders in Hawaii didn’t know there was imminent attack coming towards them in Hawaii…there was definitely intel of an imminent attack, but where was not known. The Japanese just showed up early morning and launched their planes. Many thought the imminent attack was the Philippines, (which by the way along with the UK forces in Singapore, was attacked right away after Pearl Harbor.) Again, US Commanders (and probably most other nations) wouldn’t let a huge fleet with troop transports remain within striking distance without taking significant “war-like” measures for self-defense. They might not fire the “first shot,” in a large scale battle, but that would just be a formality.

    Ichabod


  • @Ichabod:

    … Saying that however, I don’t believe the axis and allies community is going to get a supreme court ruling by LH. I see the points other people make in how they interpret the language of the rule book. …

    You can of course ignore what I wrote before… perhaps you don’t know that Krieghund is the “supreme court” when ruling.
    He has been doing that in close contact with LH.

  • '18 '17 '16

    Thanks Panther,

    It’s a shame that they they never explain their rules or the rationale behind them. I know that because in the past I’ve seen his posts and he refuses to make those types of comments. This is officially the stupidest rule in the book. I can’t wait for the third edition of the game so I can start using my French robots, maybe they will attack the Japanese navy parked in Pearl Harbour since the Americans aren’t allowed to defend themselves in second edition. Who knows, maybe the Americans will be issued bullets in the third edition and the French robots won’t have save them from their own incompetence.

  • '17

    @P@nther:

    @Ichabod:

    … Saying that however, I don’t believe the axis and allies community is going to get a supreme court ruling by LH. I see the points other people make in how they interpret the language of the rule book. …

    You can of course ignore what I wrote before… perhaps you don’t know that Krieghund is the “supreme court” when ruling.
    He has been doing that in close contact with LH.

    Cool. I didn’t see your post; must have crossed paths. I did not know who Krieghund is. I’m fairly new to this game anyways.

    So Krieghund wrote the rule intending, prior to war, to permit Japanese ships to be in range of US mainland territory. Fair enough!  :-D

  • '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    Just chiming in here cause I found an extra penny!

    First, I think the move is perfectly legal.

    If the US player has to sacrifice a cruiser and abandon Hawaii to stop it it’s a perfectly acceptable trade for the advantages that Japan has just handed China, ANZAC and the UK. ANZAC of course has to be carfeful to keep building up defenses until the UK has retaken Hong Kong (losing in four turns would be embarassing as heck) but beyond that Japan has spent so much on resources and positioned all its eggs in the “kill the US basket”. Even if Japan wanted to counter UK and ANZAC advances, it can’t do so effectively for about five turns and by that time Japan’s income will be toast. All the US has to do is not lose Eastern US – everything else can be recovered.

    BTW GHG, I love those preposterous rules additions that you’re proposing – I find them quite entertaining to visuallize. The flying ANZAC tanks was my favorite.

    Marsh


  • @Ichabod:

    No one has argued or made a point of even why the rule was even written in the first place SINCE it actually doesn’t stop Japan and block them like the way that the US is restricted in the Atlantic.

    It’s does facilitate blocking Japan.  As long as the IJN has to pass through another sea zone before they get to SZ 10, America can block them.  Without this rule, Japan could park loaded ships in SZ 9 or 12 and USA could not block the amphibious assault.

    This actually has been mentioned:

    @zooooma:

    @Karl7:

    Japan moves to Hawaii, the US pulls back to the WUS, and puts 2 dd blockers out to stop attack.  USA build troops in EUS to counter Germany advance.

    This.  The rule does not keep Japan out of striking range (like some people think it ought to), but it does ensure intervening sea zones that USA can block. Essentially it allows America to thwart a landing - but not if they just sit in Hawaii.

    @zooooma:

    @Ichabod:

    A rule was written which expressed a PURPOSE of restricting the Japanese from being too close.

    What’s “too close”?  Japan can attack USA from SZ 26, but only if the American player chooses to let themselves be attacked (by not blocking the intervening sea zones).

    @zooooma:

    @Ichabod:

    So we have rule intended to keep the Japanese fleet back, but not really keep them back?

    Apparently, we have a rule intended not to prevent the Japanese from “sneaking up” on the US, but to give the US enough of a buffer to intercept the invasion.

    The rule doesn’t “keep the Japanese fleet back”.  But it ables America to do just that.

  • '18 '17 '16

    Marsh. I have hover tanks from the Fortress America game all ready to be painted up so I don’t have to spend the extra money on new pieces.

    It’s not the fact that they are too close that I find offensive, it’s sharing the same sz as the American fleet while the US can’t even stop in a sz containing an unoccupied Japanese territory. That’s queerer than a six dollar bill. Seriously, are the Americans scared of Japanese people or are they waiting for the rest of the world to share bullet technology with them? Couldn’t they at least be able to chuck rocks or flick cigarette butts at them?

  • '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    I think you have to keep in mind that the US did not want to go to war. So yes, I think the presence of the Japanese navy off Hawaii would have elicited some concerns, but that the US would not have made the first overt hostile action.

    Also, keep in mind that the US did something similar between 1907 and 1909 by sailing the Great White Fleet (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_White_Fleet) around the world.

    Finally, keep in mind that the United States and most other nations at that time did not consider aircraft carriers to be combat vessels – they were primarily thought of as scouts to locate the enemy so that the battleships could go in for the kill.

    Marsh


  • WOW! I can’t believe I have been playing this rule wrong!

    However, on a historical point of view I agree with Ichabod here why the move shouldn’t be legal. Does it make sense why Japan can put a fleet of aircraft carriers, battleships, cruisers, destroyers, subs and transports filled with tens maybe hundreds of thousands of troops, to park right next to a naval base of a country (including part of the country’s fleet) that is the cause of why Japan is running out of oil and that naval base is right in range of the country’s mainland?! Do you think the English would let the Spanish armada park in a English port even though they were at the verge of war (not saying US and Japan was)? You guys can use wikipedia all you want to prove why it this is historically legal. I’m not trying to prove that it isn’t a legal move in the game, because the person who created the rule says it is legal.

    Game wise, I fine with it. I mean Ichabod says he didn’t approach the situation correctly and Karl7 proves that the chances of this strategy (kill US first) working is little to none. However, I’m glad this is rule was clarified.

  • '17 '16

    @GeneralHandGrenade:

    ROBOTS!!
    Yeah, France could have robots. They attack at 5 and defend at 5. Movement 2. The only way you can kill them is with a Japanese Kamikaze at 1. Replace all of the French infantry in the starting setup with robots.

    I’m disappointed in you GHG… if you’re going to give France Robots that attack at 5 and defend at 5, then you should give Japan Godzilla that attacks at 6 and defends at 6, with 6 hit points, duh…

  • '17 '16

    @Marshmallow:

    Also, keep in mind that the US did something similar between 1907 and 1909 by sailing the Great White Fleet (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_White_Fleet) around the world.

    Well, the topic of this thread is basically Japan pre-positioning a full-on invasion fleet loaded with troops on transports ready to nail another nation with a quick invasion.

    The sailing of the pre-dreadnought US Fleet around the world into ports
    #1: wasn’t an invasion fleet full of troop transports
    #2: they were pre-dreadnoughts in the dreadnought age… hardly cutting edge… the HMS Dreadnought was already in service and all the European nations were hurridly building massive dreadnoughts that completely outclassed the Great White Fleet.

    I really fail to see how the sailing of the Great White Fleet has anything to do with this topic… its like telling us to look at the monkey.

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