Game Report 164; The USSRush

  • 2018 2017

    So I went ahead and went for Iraq with the Russians and have a few observations to discuss

    I expect a G2, unless Germany is doing a gambit or stratagem plan.  This is an Allied stratagem–to get up to 4 (or 6) Italian Original territories with the bonuses, for Russia.  UK will not enter any of these lands, unless the idea is to draw a re-take by Italy.

    So R1 1 infantry 1 mech 1 armor to Caucasus, 1 more mech headed that way.  Should have built 1-2 more mechs/armor at Volgograd, in retrospect.

    UK 1 choices are kind of limited when you cant attack Horn of Africa and no Sea Lion coming (BB dead no buy) so built 1 TT 1 Art 1 inf for SA and all infantry for UK PAC.  Take Persia by boat with the med transport and take Sumatra with the UKPAC one.

    My Taranto planes (1SB 1TB) landed in Syria;  don’t omit to move the UK infantry here or Italy will attack these and you really need this punch.

    R2 take NWP

    UK2  attack Iraq to weaken it for Russia.  Think I had 3 infantry and 1 armor.  Retreat.  If Italy leaves Italian territory, blast that–but don’t move in.

    R3 take Iraq

    UK 3 meds clear, I send some naval units from SZ 81 - 94 to dash across the med since Italy can only hit these OR can-open this turn.  Only 1 BB is left to support African ops.  Continue to buy more slow units and a bomber in SA and shuck all over or support ops against roaming Italians.

    R4 your mobile units are in Egypt.  2 mech 1 armor.  I’m scrambling against stratbombings against Germany and doing attacks of opportunity, no planes can or need join in this situation.

    UK 4 I’m missing out on 2$ (Ethiopia and Libya) that I could be going for.  I have integrity and use it to build in SouthAfrica, London is safe but bombed.  Take Norway and annoy Germany, hes focused on USSR. Italians are hiding and dancing.

    G 5 attack Moscow.  I got 4/11 (7%) planes on AAA, which gave me the odds, something like 26 inf, 7 art, 4 AAA, 1 armor, 1 tac, 2 fighters, which was weak, he probably would have won otherwise.  If he’d waited hed have more infantry.  Germany ragequits and it was bedtime anyways.

    R 5 first chance to take the Italy money, but only 1 armor to support the mechs I bought.  Infantry are too slow and would be useful primarily if you could allocate UK transport to them, but this is really plodding and slow and I feel like the mobility only approach is better.

    UK 5 Lookin good zzz

    Pros about this idea;  Russian income was strong and about to get stronger.  That’s great but it takes a while to make a difference.  Didn’t feel like I missed the expeditionary force on offense, but on defense…perhaps.  UK is deploying in Africa which can help UK PAC if London is bombed but safe.  If you’re really boss you can take Sicily and Sardinia but this takes a dance I’ve never been able to pull off.

    Cons;  If you lose Moscow, all this income goes to Germany.  Uk has to find new things to do because it isn’t taking Italian territory over.  If Italy knows what the plan is he can hide in his own lands since UK can only strafe him and keep the plan intake.  If I had been worried about London getting invaded, all the extra stuff in Africa wouldn’t have been placed.

    Lessons learned.  need to focus more on Moscow and make sure that more fighters get there, earlier.  All my ANZAC and some of my UK.  Entering Russia or not didn’t affect the NO because the Germans took Archangel rapidly.  This plan sounds really good on paper but if the Italians know your plan or Moscow falls, it was a sideshow.

  • 2019 2018 2017

    Thank you. Good to learn a bit about ideas for the Allies.

  • Thank you for the game, I think Iraq is always a great deal, but a lone mech. infantry + tank might be sufficient for the extra Italian bonuses. I think it is a mistake to leave Italy in Ethiopia, so kill them with UK. Same for Tobruk. However Libya + Somaliland might be empty anyway so bonus. Then when USA is in med, use their transports to take Sardinia amd Sicily.

    R3 = +5 IPC bonus per turn
    R6 = +12 IPC bonus per turn
    R8 = +18 IPC bonus per turn

    For an allocation of 10 IPC USSR troops it is indeed just a sideshow, it should not dictate the UK besides leaving empty Italian zones. However it is a profitable sideshow so worth doing.

  • Here is the theory I am testing now:

    If the U.S. sends fleet groups hurtling towards the money islands supported by ANZAC air, the pressure is removed from Calcutta. If Russia sends a large force (larger even than you propose) to lock down Africa for the Allies, the pressure is removed from there as well. This allows Britain to focus the majority of its resources on defending Moscow (assuming standard Barbarossa play). They can send mech infantry in addition to fighters to replace what the Russians have given up.

    Although the Russian expeditionary force does begin the game as a sideshow, it is powerful in the long game. It’s a deep play that looks 10+ turns ahead, anticipating the tipping point when the Axis can no longer continue to match greater Allied production.

    To this strategy I would like to add another proposal for a deep play: the Canadian island hop. The purpose of this strategy is to increase Calcutta’s production along the same time frame that the Russian expeditionary force increases Russia’s.

    The following timeline assumes Germany has destroyed the transport in seazone 106.


    • Build 4 bombers for deployment in Europe to hedge against Sealion and annoy Axis operations
    • Move 1 bomber and 1 destroyer to clear subs in seazone 106 (the remaining air and navy is still enough to execute the Taranto raid)
    • Move 1 transport to seazone 106
    • Move 1 infantry 1 artillery to Central United States


    • The Americans will build fleet and 1-2 transports each turn to send to the Southeast Asia / money island area.
    • Transport 1 infantry 1 tank to seazone 64
    • Move 1 infantry 1 artillery to Western United States


    • Transport 1 infantry 1 tank to seazone 50
    • Load 1 infantry 1 artillery onto American transport, seazone 10

    The Canadians continue their foray into the Pacific protected by American fleet. They will be the ones to retake the money islands from Japan. The first wave can reach the islands on turn 5, and the second (loaded on the American transport) can reach on turn 6.

    As soon as Calcutta no longer faces an existential threat, they begin to support the European U.K. forces in Russia. If they have all starting territories + 3 money islands, they are making 33 IPC’s per turn. I assume Russia has lost 21 IPC’s of production, but they can replace this with 19 IPC’s from Africa for a production of 35 per turn. UK Europe should also be making 35 per turn. Using this combination of strategies, the Allies can begin to match the Axis with 103 IPC’s / turn in the European theater from around the 8th round. This is of course the same time frame when Germany is looking for Moscow to fall, so early support of Moscow is critical for this to work.

    The endgame is for the massive American fleet to begin to slip into the Mediterranean and open up a front in Italy and the Balkans. We are hoping to put the Axis into a defensive posture on both sides of the board from around the 12th round: this is the tipping point.

  • 2018 2017

    Great feedback guys, keep it comin.

    “I think it is a mistake to leave Italy in Ethiopia, so kill them with UK. Same for Tobruk”

    I also thought this, but in general, the Italians in Africa are trapped and don’t have much offensive firepower.    My main opponent, Maphead, even pulls the armor from Africa so he retains 2 on the mainland for can-opening.  This leaves them with 10 or so +2 units, that are mostly slow.

    I’m taking advantage of the rigorous and brutal can opening strat (which I agree is the strongest Axis play) because it means Italy has already recognized the folly of Africa and is tasked with a more useful job–increasing Germany’s speed.  The UK doesn’t gain a ton by securing Africa (+2$, +$5 integrity), but it avoids LOSING key zones and money to the Axis (oil, Egypt, up to 20$ of territory to Italy, Japan, Ger) and this is key to the long game.

    “it is powerful in the long game.”

    And this is where all the metagame is right now, in my opinion.  Allies; Get to the long and get ready for it.  Where we are at now in 2017 is a very fast pressure on Russia, that leads to a 60/40 odds battle on G5/G6.  I need to pick up my game and get those tan and silver fighters to Moscow, safely, and make that 50/50 or better.    Bombing Russia entirely out is a huge threat and the lost bonus for Russia NO isn’t, im scrambling/intercepting like crazy (we don’t play BMod, but it still seems worth it to trade Rus Fighters for Ger Stratbombers in order to avoid the round after round demolition).

    If I can do that, then these other strategies that focus Allied power and maintain my economic push over the long game will come into the fore.

  • I think you’ve got the right idea.

    You might remember my “11 conclusions” thread from a few weeks back, where I explained I thought we should develop a “strategic framework”. My thought is essentially that we should push the meta-game to a final state of maturity by determining what the best Allied response is to the rapid Axis push, and use our conclusions to help support a theory of the board.

    The strategy I described earlier (combining the Russians in Africa, the Canadian / U.S. push for the money islands and concentrated British support of Moscow) is the best I can come up with for an Allied response. I am interested to see if you agree or would be willing to test it in your games as well, or if you have any objections that I should consider.

    I am buying the following units as part of this strategy:

    7 artillery, 4 mech on turn 1 followed by straight infantry unless special circumstances demand a fighter or some artillery. I am sending 6 mech, 2 tanks to Africa. Remember the idea is that these forces will be replaced by the British in short order.

    4 bombers turn 1 (for Europe) followed by fleet for the foreseeable future (carrier, loaded transports, assorted warships but very few aircraft as ANZAC will provide these).

    UK Europe:
    6 infantry, 1 fighter turn 1; minor IC’s in Persia and Egypt turn 2; mech infantry turn 3 followed by fighters and mechs 4+

    UK Pacific:
    3 infantry, 2 artillery turn 1; continue building infantry and artillery until Japan is thrown back, then switch to mechs and fighters to support the defense of Moscow.

    Straight fighters unless Japan is doing some crazy kill Australia first move. These fighters will land on American carriers and/or journey to Moscow.

    The general strategy begins by coordinating Russian, Chinese, British and American stacks so they are all hurtling towards China and the money islands at once. Japan can annihilate one or maybe two of them, but then they’re stuck just trying to hold on to their gains. At that point Second Russia is born and the tan blob can begin to move on the Germans. America sends fleet to blockade Italy and/or provide cover for a Grecian beachhead using Egyptians and Brazilian-American forces, who have been marching across Sub-Saharan Africa this whole time.

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