Russian winning strategy?


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Assume the American and British players are idiots and the Jap and German players are awesome,

    What strategies should Russia be using?

    I’m thinking Art/Inf purchases in an effort to keep 60% infantry, 40% artillery on the Western Front while using planes, tanks and all infantry you can on the Eastern Front to hold off the Japs as long as possible.


  • 2007 AAR League

    i once played with someone as russia who used a strategy that i thought was extremely stupid but it ended up working realy good for a while … he bought all tanks everyturn and he was whooping germany until about 5 turns in when he ran out of infantry nd didnt start buying them again at which point japan was whooping him


  • 2007 AAR League

    Russia starts with 2 fighters, I like to purchase 2 more (1 each R1&R2) then build inf/art throwing in a tank or 2.  I can usually keep russia’s IPC up near 30 for several rounds giving the US/UK time to get forces into the western theater.  As far as japan I usually go for a delaying action 6 inf to bury in R1 & slowly falling back to Novo.  In R1 2 inf & 1 fgt or 1 tnk to sink to counter attack Japan in China on R2 if they only have a few infantry left from their attack on J1.  However if the US/UK players are “complete idiots” Russia is in big trouble.


  • 2007 AAR League

    I use mixed builds for every country. Maybe a little navy-poor when it comes to Russia and Germany but otherwise pretty mixied in regards of IPC spent on air/land/navy.

    For Russia that means buying offensive pieces early(when you can) and then all inf in the later stages of the game. If I can afford a fighter at some point(due to lack of axis pressure, or good dice somewhere giving me a breather) I buy one. I don’t think Russia can ever afford 2. (?)

    Early rounds: arm, inf.
    Middle rounds: art, inf, maybe a little arm or an extra fig
    Late rounds: inf, inf, inf.
    Last round: Battleship(s)


  • 2007 AAR League

    I like buying fighters in the early rounds as opposed to armor because in order to bring your armour to bear you will have to leave it in the teritory you are attacking.  Fighters give you offensive power without having to risk them to a counter-attack.



  • One thing to remember about “leaving armor behind” after a battle is that ARM does defend on a 3.

    Another thing to remember with Russia against Germany is that Germany is often very quickly INF starved on the Eastern front while Russia is not.

    So… use massed forces (move your R1 West Russia Stack in mass) so that you have your ARM and ART along with lots of INF.  Attack HARD and invite Germany to counter.  Russia loses INF, Germany loses ARM.  Add an AA moving with the stack and Germany loses FIGs too.


  • Official Q&A 2007 AAR League

    I’m with Mr. Switch, big stack in West Russia, invite the Germans in so you can crush them on a counter attack. Although that probably won’t work as the Axis is awesome. Get some offense early especailly since ARM defends at 3 in Revised (not having that symptom of RTS are you?)  I like a FTR or two but I always like a FTR or 2 for any side. Keep 'em in Moscow or Caucaus. Work that pile of units in West Russia (the really big pile of units.) Delay on the Japanese front and hope and pray that your Allies aren’t so idiotic they completey forget to attack anyone. I recommend constantly muttering to yourself “I have to get to Berlin before the stinking yanks do.” If their idiocy is high enough they will get the goal if only because they think they are messing with you.

    There are several in depth threads on this. They are where I learned about the coolness of the West Russia Stack.



  • I would rely heavily on the West Russian stack.  Usually for the first few rounds I purchase 4 inf and 2 tanks to add to the stack or defend against the Japanese.  In the last game I played with my friends the German player in an attempt to counter the stack moved all his ARM that could reach into Ukraine and lost it all on R2.  This forced the front way off the border of Moscow and Germany was unable to recover.  I am a believer in the WR stack.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Why WR and not Cauc or Karelia?

    And isn’t artillery better then armor since it doubles your infantry’s attack power for every artillery piece?  That basically means you ahve double the firepower for your infantry plus 2/3rds the firepower of a tank for 80% cost of a tank.


  • 2007 AAR League

    @Jennifer:

    Why WR and not Cauc or Karelia?

    And isn’t artillery better then armor since it doubles your infantry’s attack power for every artillery piece? That basically means you ahve double the firepower for your infantry plus 2/3rds the firepower of a tank for 80% cost of a tank.

    Because WR borders Ukraine, Belorussia and Karelia. All three of those territories usually are traded back and forth as they are the contested territories between the Russians in WR and Germany in E Eur until one of them gets enough of a  numbers advantage to advance (usually into Belo) and force the other to retreat. Germany is frequently the winner in this contest, but Russia can get the upper hand if Germany turtles up early or sends a lot of units to Africa(my focus).

    Artillery is at a disadvantage on a small scale comparison 1inf, 1art vs 1 inf, 1 arm, but on a large scale, artillery has a distinct advantage due to it being lower cost and therefore more can be produced.

    Armor, however, retains the mobility advantage. When the frontlines are a large distance away from your IC’s, armor gets the edge as they can get there faster. This effect is most often associated with Russia vs. Germany in Europe or Russia vs. Japan in Asia. The closer to the front that you are the more artillery you will produce and the further away the more armor you will produce.


  • Official Q&A 2007 AAR League

    West Russia borders all the territories you will likely be trading with Germany. It also borders Moscow and Caucaus the two territories you can’t lose so it is a good place to work out of. ARM in West Russia can easily be sent to the Japanese front if needed.

    ARM vs. ART seems much more like a matter of preference to me. I have been buying 3 INF and 3 Arm on R1. I give up one or two hits on the ARM buy (vs INF and ART or all INF) but I get 3’s attacking or defending plus mobility. I think that is worth giving up one or two units for. I am also going to stack INF down the road and if I conserve the ARM I’ll get to swing a lot with those ARM on defense. The ARM can also deter Germany from attacking swiftly which gives you time. You need time even with good Allies let alone idiots as in your scenario.


  • 2007 AAR League

    Put me in the W. Russia stack column.  It’s the key territory for russia, not only because it borders all the battleground territories (Karelia,Belorussia,Ukraine), but it borders both of Russia’s IC making massive reinforcement much easier (that’s the big advantage over stacking Ukraine).



  • Jen,

    Besides the strategic reasons to place in West Russia on R1, there is another far more pragmatic reason…

    West Russia is the ONLY place that all forces can reach.

    You empty Archangel and Russia into West Russia.  You also eitehr empty Karelia into it (if also attacking Caucuses), or empty Caucuses into it (if also attacking Belo).

    On average you end up with about 7 INF, 2 ART, and 2-4 ARM in West Russia after R1.  Caucuses has 5 INF, 2 FIG.  An INF left as a blitz blocker in Karelia, and some other forces built in Russia (perhaps some forces from Novo and or Evenk as well, depending on your strat against Japan).



  • I prefer ARM over ART because of the mobility.  ARM staged in Russia as defense against Japan can reach several territories on the German front as either Offensive units or to bolster defenses. As for stacking in WR to me it makes the Germans choose which route they are going to Moscow.  Also if Russia holds WR and decides to go offensive via Ukraine and the UK successfully supports the attack by landing troops in Karelia or Norway and pushes south it puts a lot of pressure on Germany.



  • @ncscswitch:

    An INF left as a blitz blocker in Karelia

    I usually DON’T leave that blitz blocker.  As Russia I WANT Germany to send up an exposed Tank to claim Archangel, that I can kill in R2.  Germany loses a 5 IPC unit to claim a 2 IPC territory.



  • W Russia is Russia’s best friend or worst enemy… just like Kazahk it commands both Russia and the Caucasus. The Russian player should only back out of W Russia if imminent destruction is at hand — otherwise hold the line.

    Armor, as said above, is valuable as both a deterrent and as tough mobile defense to shore up weak points quickly.

    I believe that if your purchases are in the neighborhood of 5 inf/ art/ armor for every 24 IPCs spent you’ll be able to play both offense and defense efficiently. Of course that’s subject to change as the game evolves but it’s a pretty good standard mix.


  • Moderator

    I think you are right about the 5-1-1 split.  I believe that comes out to be very close to getting the most bang for your buck while considering both off and def.

    Another quick observations, either a 1:1 (inf:rt) or (inf:arm) ratio is bad and not cost effective at all, especally as you get into larger and larger battles.

    Intuitively speaking, a 3:1  inf to rt (or arm) ratio is sufficient (think LL where you get 6 attack pts), but generally I’ll play (at least from a classic perspective and my limited revised exp) with a ~5:1 ratio.  Although in LL, I might stick closer to the 3:1 due to the greater predictability of strafing.

    I’m an infantry person, and from my point of view you can never have enough infantry.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I’m getting the distinct impression that your best bet seems to be 5-7 infantry and 1-3 armor for the first few rounds (whatever works out to spend all your cash) and at the end of the game 100% armor to beat US/UK to the eastern asia border so you can actually continue playing if you want. (Buying ICs and building navy there.)


  • Official Q&A 2007 AAR League

    I tend to take it as an axiom that an INF purchase is never bad. Not being able to kill the INF is also bad. I try to keep a balance myself. All INF is great until you need to counterattack just for the space.

    Jennifer you are going to take over the Japanese ICs on the mainland won’t need to build your own.



  • @JamesG:

    @ncscswitch:

    An INF left as a blitz blocker in Karelia

    I usually DON’T leave that blitz blocker.  As Russia I WANT Germany to send up an exposed Tank to claim Archangel, that I can kill in R2.  Germany loses a 5 IPC unit to claim a 2 IPC territory.

    If you don;t use a blitz blocker, Germany gains 4 not 2 IPC with that 1 ARM, and they have a 50/50 chance of killing an INF when you counter-attack.  That makes the average 5.5 IPC to 5.

    But there are other reasons to use the blitz blocker besides the IPC trade…
    1.  Without it, Russia has to divert forces to Archangel to re-take it in R2, otherwise you are -4 IPC.  Unless you move the WRS to Archangel (a bad move) you invite a counter-attack against your minimal forces in Archangel, losign those forces, and then STILL having a problem with Germany on your doorstep for R3.  That even further changes the economics of the trade to favor Germany.
    2.  It forces you to split your forces, even if only a small number of them, in order to counter the ARM in Archangel.  Those forces, if not sent to Archangel, can better be used trading Ukraine, or reinforcing the WRS
    3.  It lets Germany re-position for a better Southern Strike on Russia.  They grab both Karelia and Archangel with the blitz, TRN from Norway to Eastern, and stage heavy in Eastern.  This forces Russia to keep trading Belo (or to take it with minimal forces if they did not already), and try to protect both Karelia and Ukraine/Caucuses.  And, while the WRS is a pretty powerful entity, if it get drwan into a head-to-head early on with what Germany can stage in Eastern on G1, it is toast with a large German force survivigthe battle…


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    One thing I’ve noticed in this game is this:  In revised you can actually use strategy instead of numbers to win.  You don’t HAVE to attack the enemy’s huge stack of infantry and hope to win with enough to continue the march because now you can go around it.  There are 9 avenues of attack to Moscow, not 2 when you consider all different viable routes.  That means if Russia or Germany isn’t careful you can sidestep their army and go for their capital.

    Of course, you get the capital and the enemy only has two choices…go home to retake it, or try for yours.  Meanwhile, you can build max capacity in armored units that are 50/50 regardless of action, making cleanup much easier.



  • But there are other reasons to use the blitz blocker besides the IPC trade…
    1.  Without it, Russia has to divert forces to Archangel to re-take it in R2, otherwise you are -4 IPC.  Unless you move the WRS to Archangel (a bad move) you invite a counter-attack against your minimal forces in Archangel, losign those forces, and then STILL having a problem with Germany on your doorstep for R3.  That even further changes the economics of the trade to favor Germany.
    2.  It forces you to split your forces, even if only a small number of them, in order to counter the ARM in Archangel.  Those forces, if not sent to Archangel, can better be used trading Ukraine, or reinforcing the WRS
    3.  It lets Germany re-position for a better Southern Strike on Russia.  They grab both Karelia and Archangel with the blitz, TRN from Norway to Eastern, and stage heavy in Eastern.  This forces Russia to keep trading Belo (or to take it with minimal forces if they did not already), and try to protect both Karelia and Ukraine/Caucuses.  And, while the WRS is a pretty powerful entity, if it get drwan into a head-to-head early on with what Germany can stage in Eastern on G1, it is toast with a large German force survivigthe battle…

    Great points Switch. I’d like to add one thing-

    4. The German player is required to bring either 3 infantry or 2 infantry/1 fighter when a single Russian infantry is present to assure a reasonable chance at taking Karelia. This accomplishes two things for the price of 1 infantry- prevents a larger stack in E Europe, and/or forces a fighter to be used, meaning one less fighter in one of these places- Egypt/Belo/SZ 15/SZ 13/or the Ukraine. A German walk in of Karelia allows 2 German infantry to board the transport and land safely in E Europe, meaning a larger presence on G2.


  • Moderator

    @88:

    But there are other reasons to use the blitz blocker besides the IPC trade…
    1. Without it, Russia has to divert forces to Archangel to re-take it in R2, otherwise you are -4 IPC. Unless you move the WRS to Archangel (a bad move) you invite a counter-attack against your minimal forces in Archangel, losign those forces, and then STILL having a problem with Germany on your doorstep for R3. That even further changes the economics of the trade to favor Germany.
    2. It forces you to split your forces, even if only a small number of them, in order to counter the ARM in Archangel. Those forces, if not sent to Archangel, can better be used trading Ukraine, or reinforcing the WRS
    3. It lets Germany re-position for a better Southern Strike on Russia. They grab both Karelia and Archangel with the blitz, TRN from Norway to Eastern, and stage heavy in Eastern. This forces Russia to keep trading Belo (or to take it with minimal forces if they did not already), and try to protect both Karelia and Ukraine/Caucuses. And, while the WRS is a pretty powerful entity, if it get drwan into a head-to-head early on with what Germany can stage in Eastern on G1, it is toast with a large German force survivigthe battle…

    Great points Switch. I’d like to add one thing-

    4. The German player is required to bring either 3 infantry or 2 infantry/1 fighter when a single Russian infantry is present to assure a reasonable chance at taking Karelia. This accomplishes two things for the price of 1 infantry- prevents a larger stack in E Europe, and/or forces a fighter to be used, meaning one less fighter in one of these places- Egypt/Belo/SZ 15/SZ 13/or the Ukraine. A German walk in of Karelia allows 2 German infantry to board the transport and land safely in E Europe, meaning a larger presence on G2.

    1.  But Russia doesn’t really need to divert anything.

    Maybe 1 inf, but that is about it.
    You shouldn’t be using your Russian armor on a rd 2 attack anyway.  all it takes is 1 inf from Mos and 2-3 arm and boom the Ger armor is toast and it doesn’t hurt Russia at all.  The armor is still in position to attack on rd 3 and all you did is divert the 1 inf to arch, which btw is the same as keeping 1 inf in kar on R1.

    2.  I don’t think so.  The bulk of the Russian forces should be in WR with about 6 inf, 1-2 arm, 2 ftrs in Cauc after R1.  That still allows you to trade Belo, and Ukr with inf and 2 ftrs.  which is all you need if UK reclaimed Kar for you.  1 inf and 2-3 arm in Arch on R2 is not out of position.  Those arm can still hit EE, Belo, Kar, Ukr, WR, and Fin.

    3.  Russia should not be attempting to “hold” Kar.  Trade it “yes”, hold “no”.
    Russia should also not be attempting to hold Ukr.  If the Germany player is smart they should always stage heavy in EE b/c anything else will open the door to possible Russia strafes or a power move of their own.  Remember you don’t have to take a territory.
    Russia owns the supply line adv and it is easier to defend, don’t extend too far and keep your power base in WR, Cauc, and Mos and you can be quite the force.

    Germany can do the same exact thing (southern focus)  if they just ignore taking Kar in the first place.  If it is empty, great take it, but you should still be going Heavy to EE on G1.  The 2 IPC of Kar is not that big of a deal, what is a big deal is keeping your Germany army together in force and not losing armor early.  I see it as a trap and wouldn’t waste my armor on the Arch blitz.  UK, can even counter Arch on UK 1, if I’m not mistaken.

    4.  It may be nice to get Germany to try and use 2 inf to attack kar on G1, but it still isn’t worth it to make the strike b/c UK has the potential to counter the 1 inf with 2 inf of her own an a BB shot on UK 1 as well as an Arch counter.
    I’m just thinking of how I play as Germany, I wouldn’t waste the 2 inf to try and take Kar, not on rd 1, there are too many more important “must win” targets.  Reclaim Ukr (if taken) and take the UK ships and Egy, don’t over extend early.  A good allied player will eat that up.



  • As I said earlier…

    If you counter in Archangel with the 1 INF and 2-3 ARM, then you have split your Russian forces, making WR weaker and giving more “weak targets” overall for Germany to pounce on.

    88 did a great clarification of the difference…
    Using a blocker, Russia gets to destroy isolated German units in Karelia on R2.
    Without a blitz blocker, Germany gets to annihilate a weak outpost of Russian units on G2… and DARE Russia to sweep north to counter while Germany remains poised to swing south at Caucuses…



  • 4. The German player is required to bring either 3 infantry or 2 infantry/1 fighter when a single Russian infantry is present to assure a reasonable chance at taking Karelia. This accomplishes two things for the price of 1 infantry- prevents a larger stack in E Europe, and/or forces a fighter to be used, meaning one less fighter in one of these places- Egypt/Belo/SZ 15/SZ 13/or the Ukraine. A German walk in of Karelia allows 2 German infantry to board the transport and land safely in E Europe, meaning a larger presence on G2.

    The quintessential problem with this assertion is that Germany will always have 3 inf ready to take Karelia - the Norway troops, which have nowhere else to go. The blitz blocker isn’t going to help much when you’re getting stormed by 3-5 inf (2 from xport) there.

    Normally of course you would like to throw 1 inf into a territory to force the enemy to throw more than 1 inf to take it, but I believe R1 to be the grayest case of this. I think it’s great to bait the tank into blitzing Archangel, because a trade of 1 Russian inf for 1 German tank is awesome. I also think it’s futile to leave the 1 inf there when you know for certain that those Norway troops are going to go barreling out to Karelia anyways, which isn’t a great trade of resources; your 1 infantry will deal an average of 1 IPC to Germany while it takes you 3 infantry to rebuild it.

    The point of barely holding deadzones is to force the enemy to divert their forces to retake it, but in the case of Karelia in Round 1, you are not forcing the Germans to come out to Karelia; they have forces right next door that already have nowhere to go, so there is no diversion.


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