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Mechanized Russia



  • Does anyone have much experience with buying fast movers for Russia’s defense?

    It certainly works against a slow ineffective Germany player (just did it live), being able to bring 100% of Russia’s forces against a single German group, but I’m assuming against a decently experienced German player who also buys fast movers its a recipe for disaster, right? Fewer units defending an opponent who almost certainly won’t leave an opening to demolish a stack?


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 '14 '13 Moderator

    @weddingsinger Good day. I have and have had opponents do it too. Buying 6 Tanks on R1 can unnerve a German player, especially when followed up with 3 more and 5 Mech. It shows you are nof going to lie back and get rolled over. Having two movement units is always good for flexibility.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    A mechanised strike force able to sit back from the front and threaten more than one enemy territory can benefit R’s defence. The challenges are to be able to afford it and also not to need to commit it to forward defence where is might get pinned down. Nevertheless I would typically add one or two mechanised units each turn for as long as I feel able.



  • My first concern is that Germany can trade buffer territories much better than Russia since they’ve got lots of planes. So putting 6 shiny new tanks at risk for a counter attack after a successful attack is not my cup of tea.

    The only time I’ve tried it was against a wildly inefficient opponent, though, so by the time his stack of 30ish infantry took Novgorod I had 20 mechs and 9 tanks to pair with 10 inf and 6 or 7 art to wipe him out with, then Allied fighters/bombers landed on that space to reinforce and his counter attack failed.



  • Any experienced player will agree that if USSR can buy anything else other than infantry, either Germany is not doing it’s job or USSR has Korea for some strange reason.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    @Caesar-Seriona said in Mechanized Russia:

    Any experienced player will agree that if USSR can buy anything else other than infantry, either Germany is not doing it’s job or USSR has Korea for some strange reason.

    I think this is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If R only buys infantry its options are so limited as to mean that the only thing it can do is turtle a stack of infantry. Some mechanised units and some artillery in the mix can give Germany pause, as its advances must be sufficiently strong to withstand the teeth that Russia has, hopefully thereby allowing extra turn(s) before they arrive at the gates of Moscow. But Caesar-Seriona is correct in that non-infantry purchases are limited until such time as the allies are draining Germany’s eastern front of reinforcements. Limited but not non-existent I would say. For example 30 ipcs might buy 1 mech inf, 2 art and 6 infantry.

    More controversially perhaps, I am also keen on ensuring Russia has the fighters to minimise losses during the trading of territory. An early fighter purchase may save quite a few ground unit losses. Of course it can also intercept a SBR.

    @weddingsinger said in Mechanized Russia:

    My first concern is that Germany can trade buffer territories much better than Russia since they’ve got lots of planes. So putting 6 shiny new tanks at risk for a counter attack after a successful attack is not my cup of tea.

    And weddingsinger is right too. Russia will not want to advance expensive units into territories where they will be obliterated. I am a keen fan of strafing, albeit that this strategy holds its own risks.



  • Germany has a 100% win over USSR if USSR gets no help. There is no logical reason not to stack infantry until the German Army gets thinned either because they messed up somewhere else in the world or the Allies are creating a second front Germany can’t ignore. Buying Mechs in my experience helps Germany much more unless you can swing money in your favor.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    I’ve got to agree that inf are the most efficient buy for USSR barring significant help from other allies or some Axis slow down, like a sea lion attempt.



  • I’ve personally stopped doing the X force in Iraq since I can’t seems to make it work.



  • I’m well aware of the typical play and how many more infantry Moscow can afford to stack Moscow. My question is about anyone who has played it differently and if that’s worked out at all.

    Mostly I wonder whether a stack of artillery is worth the risk they won’t be usable paired with mechs.

    If tanks or planes are the secondary useful item and in what ratio. UK fighters should start showing up in Moscow on UK4, in time for G5. Maybe a 2nd Tactical? Tanks are cheaper, but of course not useful for trading a buffer territory.


  • 2019 2017 2016

    For that to work, wouldn’t it require Germany to divide its forces? Otherwise Germany will just advance in a single stack which isn’t vulnerable to being snipped away at.

    Is that what happened in your online game?



  • Germany normally doesn’t divide their forces with the exception of splitting for Leningrad and Ukraine which USSR can’t hold on to so for example, pull the Soviet force into one stack and then slowly pull back to Moscow and if Germany gets near Moscow, I make sure to spend all my money each turn so he doesn’t get a fat wallet, I spend on artillery to chew up the remaining money if I have more money than a major can produce.



  • Stacking infantry is death for the Soviets. 6 tanks on the first few turns is actually the way to go. Or as many tanks as you can with a mech here and an infantry there. It will let you hold off the germans and swing your army where you need to go. If you don’t have a mobile army they will be at moscow before you know it.



  • That’s the worse plan I’ve ever heard. That is so easy for Germany and Italy to counter. Germany and Italy can wall their way to Moscow. Infantry stacking is the only way to go.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    6 tanks is a good R2/R3 buy if you think you can actually use those tanks to stop Germany from safely stacking Bryansk or Belarus or Eastern Ukraine or something like that. The most obvious reason why that might be true is if Germany attempted Sea Lion, but it could also happen if Germany got diced in Paris and lost most of their fast movers, or if Germany bought a ton of infantry and artillery on G1/G2, or if Germany bought a bunch of subs and bombers on G1/G2. Basically if you can slow Germany down by a full turn by preventing them from stacking the next territory in their lineup (or by taking that territory back from them after they’ve unsafely stacked there) then you gain almost a full additional turn of Russian income before the Russian capital and/or economy collapses, which more than pays for the inefficiency of tank purchases.

    On the other hand, if you buy 6 tanks and don’t stop Germany from advancing on schedule, then, yeah, you’ve just blown money Russia can’t afford to lose, and Germany will get Moscow for cheap.

    Buying 2 to 3 artillery and/or mech. infantry per turn as Russia is almost always a good idea, because it can force Germany to keep their forces together, or it can allow you to defensively stack, e.g., Leningrad for an extra turn and then safely retreat your mechanized forces (or send mechanized forces from Moscow to the rescue of a stack of infantry retreating to, e.g., Bryansk). You pull off one trick like that, and, again it pays for itself. You win a couple of battles against pairs of German units with 2 inf, 1 art, 1 ftr that you might have lost with 3 inf, 1 ftr, and, again, it pays for itself. Even if you don’t manage to pull that off, the difference between having 9 (or 27) Russian units and 10 (or 30) Russian units is not game-changing…we’re talking about a few percent on the Moscow battle or a few extra tanks for Germany after they conquer it; we’re not talking about throwing the game way.

    It’s also just more fun to have something to do with the Russians other than turtle. If it’s not clearly worse to buy a few mechs and art, why not enjoy yourself?



  • @Argothair I’ll be trying it out over my next few games.

    I was mostly thinking in these terms, assuming a G2 Barbarrossa.

    R1: 37 ipcs means either 12 inf or 9 mechs
    R2: 37 ipcs for 12 inf or 9 mechs

    (sure if you’re buying inf you may have bought some art, or tanks instead of mech, but let’s keep the variables simple)

    So you’re down 6 units on R3, and its the 1st time Russia can possibly counter attack if Germany moves in force and no Italian help yet with can opening.

    But… the difference is that now Russia has 9 mechs that can reach any battle and another 9 that can reach Belarus or either Ukraine. With only inf purchases only the 6 inf you purchased and placed on a respective factory can join your counter attack and its easy enough for Germany to stay out of reach of most of your guys. So its actually a net improvement in the early rounds of +3 to +12 units available.

    This should slow down Germany by 1 or 2 turns since they have to wait for Italy. Usually can stack 16 inf, 3 art, 3 tanks in Baltic States and Russia can’t counter. Or in Eastern Poland with 20ish inf, 5 art, 3 tanks.

    My way has Belarus with 11 Russian inf, 1 art that can be joined by 14-17 mechs, 2 tanks, 2 fighters, 1 tactical on a counter attack to Baltic States. If Germany is in Eastern Poland R2, add 5 inf to that number.

    So Germany can’t move in force until G3 when the 10 mechs/tanks they placed on Germany can join this force, for 25 inf, 5 art. The question there is whether their planes can join, but if the 5 Russian inf from karelia also join in, Russia still wins the battle with 6 German air parked. So Germany isn’t moving on Novgorod or Belarus until G4.

    Or am I missing something?

    /not sure if tanks on R1 improve the situation or not. I bet I’d want 3 on R2 though, in which ever factory the Germans seem to be heading towards.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    @weddingsinger That makes sense as far as it goes, and I wouldn’t say you’re missing anything, exactly. I think the emphasis on keeping Germany out of the Baltic States is slightly mis-placed; the Baltic States is just 1 IPC. It’s Leningrad that’s the big economic swing zone, so the question is what turn will Germany arrive in Leningrad, and then ultimately in Moscow. I think you could get away with a purchase like 8 mech, 1 art on R1 and R2 against most G1/G2 openings, but if you stretch it much past that and start mixing in tanks or planes as well, then I’d be tempted (as Italy) to stop fussing with Egypt and start sending mechs and tanks for a max stack of can-openers. If you give up too many Russian hit points, then you can’t hold the territory two spaces back (e.g. Leningrad) against Germany’s fast movers, so you’ve got to hold all of the territories in the middle (e.g. Baltic States, Belorussia) firmly enough that Italy can’t can-open them, and if you never build any regular infantry, then you’ll run out of infantry to do that garrison work and you’ll start trading more expensive units. If you get forked enough times, eventually your defense might collapse and you might have to drive back to Moscow in a hurry, allowing the Germans to advance two spaces a turn and make up for some of the turns when the Germans didn’t advance any spaces in a turn.



  • @Argothair I guess I’m used to opponents taking the Northern route since its easy to stack up for Baltic States and then hit Novgorod with it along with your 7inf from Finland, since its easier for Russia to stack up in Bryansk to threaten Ukraine.

    And I was thinking this only works for 2, maybe 3 rounds. After that its not sustainable, but the goal is for UK to be dropping 3 fighters on Moscow each turn UK4, 5, and 6. So buying Moscow an extra turn or 2 before the attack and maybe even buying an extra turn with no strategic bombings is really useful.



  • In two games in person against modest Axis player(s), mechanized Russia has worked as hoped, delaying Germany 1-2 rounds. It’ll be nice to try it in some TripleA games in the future.

    The buy I’m testing is almost all mechs, with tanks getting added on R2 (3 for Novgorod or Ukraine, depending on which way it looks like Germany is going).

    It was weird having most of Russia’s money even on R4/R5.

    In one game it meant taking Karaelia/Finland because Germany had no more navy and I had just killed his first stack of advancing infantry before his fast movers arrived. I doubt that would work against a German player used to seeing this strategy.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016

    @weddingsinger What did Germany buy in your test games?



  • @Argothair One game was a Sea Lion feint where he then hit Novgorod with the transports (yeah, I don’t recommend that either), but he didn’t realize UK was setup for a REALLY strong defense until G3.

    The 2nd game was pretty typical. I think his G1 was artillery, after that he shifted to fast movers. Maybe G2 was both inf and mechs for 20 units total.


  • 2018 2017 2016 2015

    Good topic. I think if Germany declares war G1 you dont have many othee options than infantry. With a G3 DOW i try to have a total of 3 arm, at least 5 mech, 7 is nice, and one extra fighter . I think it is important to challenge volgograd.


  • 2018 2017

    i like the fighter 9 men stratbombing is russia downfall

    i love the mechanized idea but if it ever comes down to a siege of moscow was it a suboptimal choice for defense unless it bought you until g7-8



  • @taamvan

    I’m starting to think that for fighters, UK should put its planes on Scotland UK1, then if no Sea Lion they can reach Novgorod UK2. So useful against strategic bombing but also helping defend Russia’s stack(s) on infantry.

    With limited play testing, I am liking mechanized Russia… it gives you actual options. An efficient German player won’t make mistakes that let Russia take down a German stack, but it will still slow them down a turn, making the higher expense moot, since you get an extra round of buys but also more time for Allied help to Moscow or time to force Germany to defend the Atlantic side.


  • 2017

    Instead of Mech…If allies are going heavy enough in Europe (not 100%), but enough to make Germany build defense in their west, a better option is to purchase mostly artillery instead of mech. And retreat all infantry. Don’t waste 1 inf in a territory to prevent a free walk-on. Mostly just results in a lost inf. In theory, if going heavy against Germany, there will be plenty of allied fighters in Moscow to prevent a G6 or even G7 Moscow attack. Once the Siberians come back and pair up with 25-30+ artillery, Russia’s stack is very lethal. I’ve run into a player online triplea (one of the guys who helped create BM3). He does this strategy very well. US makes significant landings, and Russia become defensive; but very lethal. Germany can’t come to Bryansk.


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