Can Germany win without a Baltic carrier?

  • Here is what I was thinking…  Not saying that I’m the first person ever to think of this, but what do you think?

    Assume Russia does a standard W.Rus stack opening and does not take out any German figs.

    Germany uses a typical African bid.  Germany buys 2 bombers and some ground troops.

    Germany takes Africa with the bid units as usual.  Germany takes the UK battleship with it’s battleship and planes.  Germnay takes Gibraltar with one inf.  Germany leaves 1 inf in Belarus and Ukraine and consolodates its Eastern forces in E.Europe.  Germany lands all its planes in W.Europe and leaves 4 inf there for defence.

    So how do you respond to this as UK?  If UK attacks the SZ7 fleet with everything it is 1 battleship, 2 transports, 2 fighters, and 1 bomber vs. 3 subs, 1 destroyer, and 1 transport.  This is a dangerous battle for the UK.  Unless they get 5 hits on the first roll there will be surviving subs sitting in that SZ.  And even if they do take out everything, they will probably lose 1 or 2 transports and leave that battleship sitting there by itself within range of Germany’s battleship, 6 figs, and 3 bombers.  This gives an obvious advantage to Germany as Uk’s fleet will be destroyed completely at the expense of Germany’s northern fleet.  Plus UK can immediately start making landings without building up a defence force because of Germany’s strong airforce.

    But UK could make this attack and then purchase a carrier and destroyer for SZ7 as well.  Suppose UK does make the attack with the best results possible and don’t lose any transports.  Then they buy 1 carrier and 1 destroyer.  Now on G2 they will have 1 carrier, 1 battleship, 2 figs, 1 destroyer, 2 transports.  If Germany attacks with 6 figs, 3 bombers, 1 battleship, 1 transport they have a 100% win (according to frood) with the most like result being the loss of the transport and 2 planes.  So again, Germany has sacrificed it’s northern fleet and an extra 28 IPCs in exchange for UK fleet plus 2 fighters plus 28 IPCs.  Another very good situation for Germany.

    But, the US could block the German battleship by moving a destroyer and two transports into SZ12 and landing troops in Algeria.  In this case Germany would be attacking the Uk fleet with planes only.  Germany is still a near 100% winner in this battle with the likely losses being 5 figs.  In addition Germany could attack the US blocking fleet with its battleship and transport.  This is a close battle, and the most likely result is the destruction of both fleets.  A sacrifice of 32 German IPC for 28 US IPC.  I’m not sure about the merits of this battle.  But in this situation the UK have lost 1 battleship, 1 carrier, 1 destroyer, 2 transports, and 2 fighers.  Germany has lost 3 subs, 1 transport, 1 destroyer, 5 fighters.  So 88 UK IPCs for 94 German IPCs.  But it may be worth it considering that Germany will now have several turns alone with Russia.

    But remember, this is all assuming that UK loses nothing on its initial UK1 battle and that Germany cannot submerge any subs.  It is far more likely that Uk will be down 2 transport and Germany will still have 1 or 2 subs left in SZ7.  This makes the resulting battle far more favourable to Germany.


  • The other option for UK on turn 1 is to not attack the German fleet in SZ 7.  But then no matter where UK positions its fleet, Germany will be able to attack it with 3 subs, 1 transport, 1 destroyer, and 3 bombers.  So assuming UK builds the maximum fleet on UK1 they would have 2 transport, 2 figs, 1 battleship, 1 carrier, 1 destroyer.  That gives Germany a 58% chance of wiping out the entire UK fleet.  If UK and US merge fleets in SZ8, then Germany can bring an additional 6 figs into the battle making it even more 1 sided.

    So what does UK do?  It seems that if you attack, the odds are you will be sacrificing your fleet for Germany’s fleet.  If you don’t attack the odds are you’ll be sacrificing your fleet for the German fleet.  Mabye some players think this is to UK’s advantage?  I wouldn’t think so because either way, Germany is left with a significant air force.  So UK can’t just start dropping transports in the water and shuttling troops over.  It should leave Germany alone with Russia for a few turns at least.

    The other option for Germany of course is to unite its fleets.  I was thinking even uniting them off Brazil and capturing Brazil in the process.  That threatens SZ10 and puts serious pressure on the US.  It forces them to leave a significant navy there and will delay their entry into Europe.

    So is this better than building the Baltic carrier?  I know there are advantages to the Baltic carrier and I almost always build one, but this seems like a viable option.

  • Now there are some pretty easy ways to stop this type of thing.  Like taking out some German fighters.  So it obviously only works with a certain Russian first move.  There are also some things that Russia can do with its sub to mess things up like put it in SZ6 on the first move.  But nobody does that…

  • Another possibility for UK is to attack on UK 1 with planes only.  Then it would most likely leave the 3 submerged subs plus 3 bombers, against the entire UK fleet.  And Uk would likely only lose 1 bomber.  This battle (assuming a max UK buy) would be 3 subs, 3 bombers vs. 1 battleship, 1 carrier, 2 figs, 2 transports.  An 85% win for the UK with the likely result being 1 battleship, 1 carrier, 1 fighter left.  Probably not good for the Germans.  So I would assume this is the best response?

    If so, how do you play Germany from here?

  • Just a few suggestions.

    Have the UK attack sz7 with all available units.  Build an AC and transport or DD to place in sz7 - land 1 UK fighter on the new AC. Â

    On US1, attack any surviving subs with the US bomber and the US fighter from EUS.  Because of the UK AC, the US fighter can fly the 4 spaces and land on the AC. Â

    Move the Russian sub to sz12 to block the German BB and Trn from reaching sz7.  If the Germans want to attack sz7 with air only (and maybe 1 sub), so be it. Â


  • And, in response to your initial query, my answer is yes, Germany can win without a Baltic carrier.  In fact, I prefer that to wasting money on the AC.  Germany is a land power, not a sea power.


  • Hey SS, how successful have you been in your games w/o buying a German AC?  Doesn’t NOT having an AC affect your homeland defence?

  • Quite successful.  No problem with homeland defence.  The extra ground units are more than enough to do the job.


  • 2007 AAR League


    Quite successful.  No problem with homeland defence.  The extra ground units are more than enough to do the job.


    16 IPCs worth of ground units dont seem to make as much as a difference as the carrier does in the overall protection of Europe. I think that without the carrier UK will be able to threaten Germany much sooner than with it.

  • All you get from the carrier is the ability to trade Norway one or two turns longer then otherwise.  Whenever I am playing Allies, I am happy when my opponent builds a G1 AC.


  • You also get protection against amphibeous assaults in Germany for several turns.

  • 2007 AAR League

    nobody would try dropping in on Germany for a while.

    That should be a power-house with some fgts around it to prevent the UK from even thinking of landing on it even if the seas are clear.

  • Moderator

    I’m with Saburo and NoMercy on this one.

    Given Germany’s starting units, I think a couple all land (or a ftr thrown in there) purchases on G1 and G2 make it extremely difficult for the Allies to consider any sort of direct landing on EE or Ger on the first several rds.

    Infact, I don’t think I’ve built a ship on G1 in my last 7-8 games as the Axis and I’ve NEVER seen an Allied 1-2 on WE, GER, or EE prior to say rd 5.  Usually you see it coming and can pull out and deadzone WE on about G5 further protecting Ger and EE and shift more towards Ukr.  Although if you wish you can still defend WE but it is around that time I try and shift everything East, since Japan sould now be built up and nearing Moscow as well.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    I’d actually go so far as to say that Germany cannot win WITH a Baltic Carrier against a good opponent.  You want a carrier, put it in the Med so you can KEEP Africa.  But better yet, just make the tanks and infantry (10 infantry, 2 armor > 8 Infantry, 1 Carrier IMHO)

    Also, forgo the bombers.  It’s okay to use yours that you start with against England in SBR to keep it from recovering.  But it’s not needed.

    Same with Gibraltar.  Just keep pummelling Egypt/T-J and ignore the rest.

    The goal here is not to delay the Allies, it’s to crush Russia before Japan can eat your land!  (or before Russia can walk their troops back from the front lines to stop you!)

  • 1.  Yeah, Germany can win without a Baltic carrier.
    2.  2 bombers is probably not sound for Germany.  Germany needs early infantry for the push towards Moscow.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    Germany needs tanks and infantry, not pretty little boats.  I’ll gladely give England E. Europe and W. Europe because I’ll have Caucasus and Moscow by the time he gets them. (Remember, he has to defend against 5/6 fighters and a bomber and that’s AFTER he gets through your Baltic Fleet!)

  • 2007 AAR League

    With a carrier you can also use it to strike at Britains Navy if the opportunity arises with FIGs that couldn’t normaly reach.

  • You know, I have been a fan of the Baltic AC since my second game of Revised.

    THIS game I chose not to do the AC, and it has worked out well.  But this is not a fair judge due to the US pulling that pretty worthless feint in the Pacific.

    Lesson #1:  NEVER change core strat mid-game.

  • 2007 AAR League

    I have won without a Baltic CV. Although, I do purchase a CV/TP for the Med. All it does is instantly limit Germany to defending the core European territories and gaining it’s IPC’s from Africa at the expense of the UK instead of Europe/western Asia at the expense of Russia.

    The goal is for Germany to hold the lines in Europe and Egypt to force Russia into a head to head battle with Japan. It’s risky because Russia can get pretty big so your Japanese moves have to be ultra efficient. So far, I haven’t found a critical weakness that will make it completely obsolete but, it has it’s drawbacks.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator


    You know, I have been a fan of the Baltic AC since my second game of Revised.

    THIS game I chose not to do the AC, and it has worked out well.  But this is not a fair judge due to the US pulling that pretty worthless feint in the Pacific.

    Lesson #1:  NEVER change core strat mid-game.

    Admittedly, you lucked out on the dice rolls against Brition 3 rounds in a row and Russia 2 rounds out of 3.  The only ones holding their own are the Americans and only because you got slightly unlucky at Pearl and Pearl Counter attack.

    Also, I didn’t change strategy.  I just built my boats in SZ 55 instead of 10.  Not like they were needed in the Atlantic in Round 2 or 3 Anyway and now that they are a few rounds from being of use, they are a few rounds from where I want to use them.

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