• I have not played this game in a couple years and was wondering why a J1 attack is a good idea. I don’t doubt that it’s a viable plan, as so many people recommend it, but I don’t understand why it is one of the best plans out there. If somebody could please enlighten me on why it is a good idea, and how to properly execute it, that would be very much appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.

  • It may not be, since it brings the U.S. into the war and that can screw up plans in Europe or Africa, for instance, but….

    J1 allows you to kill the UK Pacific’s battleship (off coast of Malaya), the U.S. ships at the Philippines, take the Philippines, Hong Kong,  and start taking the money islands.  This means they lose a valuable asset (the battleship) and you start chipping away at UK Pacific’s income right away.  You can even sink the U.S. ships at Hawaii and take a 50/50 chance at the ANZAC destroyer/transport with your destroyer at the Carolines.

    The most obvious downside being the U.S. is in the game and they make 72 ipc, but if Japan is super aggressive about expanding its income and can keep it a few turns, it really pays off.

  • '17 '16 '15

    Hi Weather

    In short, because it works. : ) Here’s the strategy guide for it :


    strategies may have changed but this should still be viable imo. Personally I usually go two but…:)

  • Because with J1, if you do it right, you can sack the bulk of the US navy at Hawaii, take the Phillies breaking that bonus and get French Indo China all one turns thus putting US at a disadvantage, gaining money, allowing yourself to factory FIC thus putting more pressure on India, and you can then proceed to take the Dutch and British Islands for your self while isolating ANZAC.

  • The real advantage is the fact that Japan has moved itself into a better position by taking the Allies out early. Because if you really want to go balls to the wall on attack, you can on J2, sack Hawaii, and then take everything from Hawaii and Phillis and land it on Queensland if you’re ballsy enough.

  • Bringing the US at war early is a huge mistake

    US factories can only produce 3 items per turn when not at war and 10 items once at war….why open that up? Your early successes and US losses and UKP BB will be very quickly be rebuilt while you lose your 10 ipc bonus and your income at mid 30’s

    US gets to position it’s forces anywhere it now wants with double the income
    Taking the Japanese fleet to Sydney or Calcutta is a huge mistake with much hindrance to return back to Japan as you do not have enough resources to combat US fleet movements AND fight land battles in the theater

    A tactical victory but a strategic loss

    my 2 cents worth

  • Leatherneck, its not so one-sided as you seem to think.  Sure the U.S. is a problem, but so is J3+ when UK pacific and ANZAC have all their extra ipcs you let them have by not attacking.

    UK Pacific will be…
    22+ ipcs up, plus what ever you would have taken by bombing them (they keep Hong Kong, Borneo and often take Sumatra)

    • a battleship (20)

    ANZAC will be
    +3-8 ipcs (Java versus New Guinea/Malaya NO)

    U.S. will be
    -36 (their NOs are +50, but you took Philipines, so they lose 14 ipcs for that)
    but keeps an extra fighter (10), sub (6), destroyer (8) at least.  With a Hawaii J1 you could also take another sub (6), destroyer (8), cruiser (12), and transport (7)

    Just on ipcs its almost even, but that UK battleship, if you get lucky and sink it without taking a casualty, that’s another 20ipc swing…

  • I have never lost a game yet when a J1 was done against me……I am only speaking from my own experience

    The key factor is factory production…I just went from 3 to 10

    Japan has a long way to go to achieve all it’s objectives…China, Calcutta, Sydney, Money Islands and not enough resources to tackle all of said area of operations
    and worse yet is you have to move your Japanese fleet into those AOs which will put you totally out of position

    J1 means Allies go full on KJF because Japan just became vulnerable

  • '17 '16 '15 '14 '12

    There are a few different versions of J1 attack.  I would stay away from Hawaii and do it in a way that keeps your options open for India versus DEI.
    (here’s my take on it for what its worth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OL3U5ZssAZo )

    One disadvantage is that J1 DOW kind of nerfs a sealion feint becasue USA can build bombers on turn 1 and be GUARANTEED able to send them to reinforce UK.  So if you want to do J1, forget about the sealion threat.

  • '16 '15 '10

    Let’s break it down into pure numbers, using 2nd edition.

    Let’s assume a fairly standard J1–attacks on 35 fleet, 37 fleet, Philippines, Borneo, Kwangtung, Yunnan, Hunan.

    So first let’s add up the ipcs of air and naval units that are likely to be destroyed J1.

    American dd and ss in 35=14 ipcs.  American fighter=10 ipcs.  It costs Japan 2 inf average to take Phi, so the 2 inf for 2 inf are an even trade.  That’s +24

    British BB is worth 20, and typically Japan loses a fig to take it out.  That’s +10.

    Borneo is worth 4 ipcs.  So that’s an 8 swing (Japan gains 4, UK loses 4).  That’s +8

    Kwangtung is worth 3.  That’s a 6 swing.  +6

    Phi is worth 2.  That’s a 4 swing.  +4

    Fico is worth 2.  +2

    There’s also the potential for a 62 attack (dd on dd) that does even more damage if it works.

    That’s +54.  So what about the countervailing numbers?  Japan misses out on the +10 bonus.  Americans will get +20 in bonuses.  Anzac will get +10 in bonuses.

    Axis seems to come out ahead.  It’s closer to even if Axis gets diced at 37 (and loses a fig + cruiser) or diced at Yunnan (which happens occasionally because w/o the bombers you only have 97% with greater average losses).  Or if the sz 62 attack fails.

    In terms of meta-strategy (in a non Sea Lion game), I think Axis gains more strategic momentum by declaring J1 then they lose in the Atlantic with USA coming into war.  For starters, Axis can build minor ICs in French Indochina and Kwangtung on J2…better locations for ICs then are available otherwise.  They have a head start on securing the islands.

    J1 is significantly less attractive in BM3 due to increased USA bonuses, perhaps to the point of being sub-optimal.  But it’s still playable.

  • The real issue of J1 is to also cripple the US Pacific Fleet, while they will be able to rebuild it faster than letting them turtle, you as Japan can move a bit more freely. The real reason as I pointed out is that J1 can be used to get FIC under Japanese control so you can factory it on J2, and then proceed to mass whatever you need to take India so by the time US gets into the fight, Japan is much better in position in Asia.

  • Thank you for all the advice. I do have a question about this though:@Caesar:

    The real reason as I pointed out is that J1 can be used to get FIC under Japanese control so you can factory it on J2, and then proceed to mass whatever you need to take India so by the time US gets into the fight, Japan is much better in position in Asia.

    Wouldn’t it be better to do a Calcutta crush and take India by J3 or J4 and then concentrate on America and ANZAC?

  • Maybe?  Taking FIC can help take India.  A factory, naval base, and/or air base can each be useful, depending on your goals.

    But, if India made protective moves and the U.S./Russia are being a problem, you might not want to move your fleet all the way around to the Indian Ocean, or risk losing too many planes, so, at the very least you need to neuter India.  Take Hong Kong, Borneo, and Malaya so its income drops to 7 or 8, make them turtle, , sink their ships, and then max strategic bomb them every other turn.

  • '19 '17 '16

    I think the main game of a J1 is getting the FIC factory one turn earlier than with a standard J2.

    That’s why I’ve taken to doing a J2 but with a J1 occupation of FIC. I find with the J2 occupation, 2 mainland asian factories aren’t enough anyway so losing 8IPC from taking FIC saves 12IPC later on when you still need IPCs to fight USA.

  • As you mentioned Japan has a lot to do in order to win. J1 lets Japan use its inherent initiative adavantage from the turn order to attack pieces the allies would not risk given the choice. The game is set piece and so with the exception of the Russian territories you can figure out what you need to send to win battles with the dice all the time. The board will be very different ok turn two and therefore you can’t be as certain.

    J1 puts the Japanese in a position to knock out the Chinese fighter, take the DEI, build two good factories on the mainland, project air superiority in a larger area, and generally have free reign as the allies have to spend early turns rebuilding and regrouping. The J1 attack when executed correctly gives the Japanese the greatest number of options as for what to do next. Normally in any kind of game if you are the player that gets more free will and has access to more resources you will win. J1 is very aggressive and Axis and Allies units favor the attacker.

  • From many games of trying both J1 and J2, I have found that the former is more advantageous if you have average luck.  The latter is a better choice if you are worried about getting diced by a stubborn UK battleship that never misses while your blind Japanese pilots circle around hopelessly.  J3 just plain stinks and is usually a sign of a novice Axis player.

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