Is Japan a Monster? [Economic Breakdown]

  • Moderator

    Yes, another thread on Japan, but here I’d like to only focus on the economics and IPCs and compare that to both Classic and Revised to show that the Allies can leave Japan alone in AA50 and focus on Europe (as in Classic and Revised).

    For the sake of this thread assume KG(I)F for the Allies and no Tech, I’ll get to NOs in a bit.

    I’ll also assume that KGF is the prevailing strategy in both Classic and Revised, meaning that you’re far more likely to see a KGF than a KJF.

    Stats:

    IPC board total
    Classic - 147
    Revised - 166
    AA50 - 181
    (Including China.  I think I counted right here, I’ll edit if I have to once I look at the map.  But a 1-2 ipc difference won’t change the numbers since I rounded them anyway.)

    Definitions:

    Monster Japan (Classic) - earns about 45-46 ipc which takes you all the way up to the boarders of Moscow.  This is about 30-31% of the total ipcs available.  (45/147)

    Monster Japan (Revised) - earns about 50 ipc.  Again, this is about 30-31% of the total ipcs and should take you to the gates of Moscow.  (50/166)

    Now to AA50.  What is 30-31% of 181?  Its about 55 ipc.  So under a straight IPC count there is no difference between Japan earning 55 ipc in AA50 and Japan earning 45-46 (Classic) or 50 (Revised).

    But with NOs we have to up the IPC total of 181, since each side can earn more than just the territory ipcs.  There are a total of 90 NO ipcs available (40 Axis, 50 Allies).  That brings the 181 to 271.
    Here a Monster Japan needs to earn about 84 ipc (.3 * 271) just to be on the same level as its Classic or Revised counterparts.

    However, this isn’t really realistic since all NO’s are not as equally as likely or some may be achieved more towards the end of the game, so I think we can eliminate some.  I’d keep all the Axis NO’s since they can all be achieved and should be at some point, but only keep 1 Rus (arch), 0 UK, 1 US (holding NA), so the total NO’s achieved in most games are 50 (40 Axis, 10 Allies).  Quick note, yes the UK may get some but Ita will lose theirs at some point and UK/US may get Fra, etc.  I think that sort of trading will even out so I’m happy with the 50 total and will actually give Japan the benefit of the doubt here.  So, 181 + 50 = 231, and now the new Monster Japan in AA50 needs to earn about 70 ipc (.3 * 231) to equal the previous versions.

    I’d even lower that number a bit, but I think this can support the claim that just because Japan earns 65-70 it does not mean the Allies are doomed (if they went KGF).  It is all relative, and when comparing to Classic and Revised, a 65+ AA50 Japan = 50 ipc Revised Japan = 45-46 Classic Japan.

    Those numbers alone are not enough to doom the Allies.  It is only when they get combined with an economically sound Germany (and Italy in AA50).  But the whole theory of KG(I)F is to eliminate the Germans as a threat, both militarily and economically.

    So it comes down to this, is it easier take ipcs from Germany/Italy or is it easier to take them from Japan?

    My vote is, it is easier to take them from Ger/Ita.

    Thoughts?


  • it does look easier sending everything u have first in the med, then at france / italy.

    but can us sink the italian fleet and close the suez quickly enough? jap fleet will!! be in the med by turn 4! the idea of 2 BB 3 CA 3 loaded AC  in the med plus jap ICs in India , FIC, possibly burma or eastindies scares me. why? UK income will be at 12 + whats left of africa which wont be much with japan in the med. so you are basically setting up a huge 1-2 punch ( france/ germany)?. this should get playtested :D.

    dont get me wrong. i think going either way with US is an option.

    how do you respond as japan when you see US1 go pacifc?


  • Ive played ~30 games of AA41 so far mostly F2F, couple trough TrippleA. Pretty even number of wins so far. All with NOs, some with some without techs.

    But as our tactics have evolved we have  seen a trend in what the allies does when they suceed and win (take the couple of wacky dice first turns that opens special strats away). So far we are pretty confident that the US must go Pacific mainly, the goal of this is not to kill the japanese fleet, but force it to stay together so they cant scatter all around the pacific, play cat and mouse, spread out subs in a lot of different sea zones etc, maintain the pacific NO of USA. while this is ongoing UK starts off making sure his fleet can sustain and start moving troops for africa + killing the Italian fleet as fast as possible, the US uses the 2 transports of EUS to shuffle 4 units ECAN to Marocco every turn. This combined with clever use of the the US pacific fleet (and the transport 41) keeps japan and Italy from totally breaking the UK economy. Ofc alternatives will happen according to what happen at the board, but this is the general idea. UK IC pops up in India if dices go wrong for Japan T1 etc.


  • what dice can go wrong J1 that would halt japan from taking india j2?


  • well ive seen the destroyer in indian sea kill 2 fighters in F2F, philipines killing 2inf 1art 1 armor in same turn. Thats enough for india to be reinforced with 2 TJ inf 1 Burma inf, and you have youreself a factory. But India, Egypt, Australia IC is not a rule in our game, but happens when someone try something smart or the dices go wacky.


  • philippines isnt in range for j2 attack anyway, you got 4 inf at borneo, sumatra,  and 5inf, art in (burma  against 1 inf)…


  • Interesting analysis.

    I’m not convinced that KGF is dead yet either. That said, I think looking at only income/turn is missing the big picture. Income per turn is not the (only) factor we should be looking at. A more important thing to consider is this: how long can Germany/Italy hold out versus a pure KG(I)F strat?

    Japan’s income in this game may be proportional to what it was in previous editions, as you demonstrated, but how long will it enjoy 60-70+ IPC cashouts? Each turn Germany and Italy can hold out is another turn that Japan rakes in the big bucks. So how does this compare to previous editions? I’m not sure, but my guess is that the european axis can hold out longer in this game. Also consider that Japan’s income explodes much quicker in this game than previous ones due to the increase in IPCs in the pacific and of course, NOs. All those turns of high cash outs translate into more and more Jap units on the board, units which the Allies will have to deal with at some point.

    What this means is that, if we consider Japan’s total income over the period in which the Allies are focused in europe, your verdict on KGF might be different. Or it might not, who knows. In my opinion, KGF is still a viable strat, but it might not be the optimal one. I guess time will tell.


  • @DarthMaximus:

    So it comes down to this, is it easier take ipcs from Germany/Italy or is it easier to take them from Japan?

    My vote is, it is easier to take them from Ger/Ita.

    Thoughts?

    Since this is the -41 scenario, I can’t see any way that allies can mount a serious threat to Jap, unless all allies spend everything against Jap for several rounds, which o/c looses the game for allies since it means leaving Ger/It alone and this will lead to Ger+It+Rus+Jap against UK+US…


  • I think Japan is only a monster if left alone.  If U.K. is defeated in India and assume no IC is built to try to halt Japan.  Only the U.S. can really bring a fight and kill units.  Sure Russia can divert but they are busy surviving and tackling Germany.  Germany is smack in the middle of the three allies and it is much easier for them to bring their numbers to bear against Germany.  More German units will die and be taken off the board so it will appear Germany has less, when in reality it pumped out as many units IPC worth but lost more than Japan.  If Japan floats happily around the pacific and piles units on land unopposed then it will appear like an orange plague is covering everything.

    I agree with your math, so maybe Japan just looks like a monster on the board because of the area it can influence.


  • @atarihuana:

    philippines isnt in range for j2 attack anyway, you got 4 inf at borneo, sumatra,  and 5inf, art in (burma  against 1 inf)…

    6 inf 1 art 1 AA vs 4 inf 2-3 fighters is a battle i take anyday. Remember for us to build an indian IC the destroyer just killed 2 figthers, we would also prolly run the R1 fighter down to india for 1 turn to make sure it survives J2. Thing is the IC in India is a situational thing we do IF and only IF the opportunity arises.

    The bottom line is the US building a fleet big enough to make sure the Japanese fleet have to be together. That heavily slows down Japanese expansion. And will make sure the at least the US pacific NO is safe, and most of the time theyre able to seize one of the Japs island for the 5 NO UK one.


  • I play KJF because of two reasons: the first, principles. The second, it’s the lesser bad

    I think KGF is not even possible of do if Japan launchs a massive attack against America. They start with 5 trannies, can buy 2 more round 1 and probably more round 2. With so much trannies, after taking Pacific islands, Japan can send all of them loaded to a combo of sea zones (Hawaii sz and others) threatening Alaska, Wcan and WUSA in such manner USA cannot defend the three and possibily only WUSA, deadzoning wcan. Then, all Japan have to do is land the massive stack in Alaska and trading Wcan, setting a 4 x 4 chain of trannies and maybe a Alaska IC. This will, at least, halt USA in their continent, unable of aiding Africa or Europe (and Africa will be lost to italians in many KGF games were UK fails to build saf IC).

    The bad news are that it was possible in Revised were Japan had much less income (after round 3) and much less starting trannies

    The worst news are that in AA50 soviets cannot annoy Japan with token forces (as they did in Revised) because of larger distances and because Japan has so much income that they can still, while doing the Polar Express, send more guys to soviets and Africa than in Revised

    The horrible news are that western axis can easily beat by economy the UK+USSR combo even without Japan’s aid or at the very least equal them, leading anyway to axis economic victory in long run because Japan colects more than USA

    The only way of allies winning with a KGF (that basically cedes the iniciative to Japan) is if Japan also cedes the iniciative again and don’t try Polar Express. And I’m not saying that JTDTM cannot win the game, it can win it and probably will do while axis manage mantain their economic advantage


  • What really should be taken into account when discussing the AA50 game is Italy, which I think changes the game in a major way. Axis & Allies is always going to be about capturing capitals, given the massive effects that has. In all earlier editions of the game, ganging up on Russia was the default strategy because Russia was the weakest power, leading to the JTDTM strategy which made AAR a broken game.

    Now, in this game all strategies I think should include eliminating Italy if you play the Allies. It is connected to Africa as well, which must be kept for the UK to be a valid power in the game IPC-wise. Italy is very simple to SBR, its fleet is vulnerable, it has little defensive power in comparison to Germany.

    So, the two major strats for the Allies I think will be:
    KIF= all of US resources and most of UK goes vs. Africa and Italy, and UK devotes enough to ward off the fall of Karelia. UK builds Saf IC.
    Balanced KIF= US resources are divided between the above objective and building up a fleet in the Pacific that offensively distracts Japan and buys the Allies time to more effectively put the KIF strategy into place. UK as above.

    The most interesting thing to see is how the Axis will adapt to this new environment. I suspect the game has been designed in the direction that it’s worthwhile for Japan to attack east with at least a part of its resources to hinder the US deployment vs. Italy -> so that a balanced KIF will be forced on the Allied powers! Maybe a balanced KRF will be the preferred Axis strategy, a Moscow advance balanced with attacks against Africa and North America.


  • If US goes for Italy/Germany, they should use Subs near exclusively for the Pacific.  They allow them to threaten the enemy fleet with a much weaker fleet and not get wiped out immediately.

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    I am just going to say, with my experience in the games of 1941, that KJF seems (to me) to be easier than KGF/KIF.

    Perhaps it is my experience with KJF from Classic and Revised.  Perhaps it is just my ability to mentally calculate a fleet battle more accurately than the calculators SEEM to (not saying it actually IS better, just I seem to get out of naval engagements far better than the calculators predict and pretty close to how I envisioned it).

    That’s just my opinion on the matter though.

    On a more factual basis:

    Germany + Italy = 50 IPC give or take.  (I assume Africa is in Allied hands and that Germany is getting 2 National Objectives while Italy is getting none.)

    Russia and England are about 50 IPC as well.

    Japan is 40 IPC early in the game and can get really strong from there, but America is 50 IPC and if focusing on the Pacific will only go up from 50 not down.

    If Japan is putting units into attacking and defending the Pacific, they are not putting feet on the ground to attack China and into Russia.  This means Russia has more it can bring to bear on Germany.

    Boats, IMHO, are more expensive for Japan than America.  Yes, I know, the price of the boat is fixed and the same across all the nations, but honestly, if you have 41 IPC with Japan (J2) how much does that battleship cost you compared to USA (A2) with 48 IPC?  For America it’s only 41%.  For Japan it’s 49%.  For America it’s no lost ground units, America has decided to attack Japan and won’t need ground units for a while.  For Japan it’s lost ground units and reduced ability to attack China/Russia.


  • I agree that the US should go primarily after Japan, the big question is in what way(s) can the UK/Russia help against Japan so that the US can play a ‘split’ strategy and still send units into africa/etc.  I can honestly see no way for the UK to help against Japan, Russia can atleast seed china to give the Japs a headache.


  • /bugoo

    In the '41 scenario, UK helps against Japan by sending troops over the Middle East to protect Caucasus, by landings in Algeria, builds in South Africa IC, or both. This is later in the game of course, so yes USA is the one bearing the brunt of fighting vs. the Japs for most of the game.

    In the '42 scenario, you also can build an IC in India for a more direct strategy. Haven’t really started playing '42 yet but it looks like a possible strat.


  • You really need to play a 42 setup to see the difference in the Pacific theatre. Japan only has 1 transport so an IC in India can work very well if you spend the first 3 US turns building in the Pacific. I’ve dominated Japan three times already in the 42 setup - the key is sticking to the Pacific with the US. The UK must deal with Italy quickly while Russia does its best to hold off Germany. Despite the low IPC count Russia can defend against the Germans without Japan breathing down their neck.

  • Moderator

    There’s lots of things to respond to so here goes.

    @atarihuana:

    but can us sink the italian fleet and close the suez quickly enough? jap fleet will!! be in the med by turn 4! the idea of 2 BB 3 CA 3 loaded AC  in the med plus jap ICs in India , FIC, possibly burma or eastindies scares me. why? UK income will be at 12 + whats left of africa which wont be much with japan in the med. so you are basically setting up a huge 1-2 punch ( france/ germany)?. this should get playtested :D.

    Yes, you should be able to close the canal in rds 2, 3 and beyond.  From Per you can close it in rds 2 and 3 with the UK and then from rd 4 on, you can close it from Lib to Egy with UK/US.  Typically the Italian fleet is sunk in rds 3 or 4 at the latest.  In a KG(I)F the UK’s income should rarely if ever be below 22-23.  Reclaiming Afr is a top priority, and the Axis never gain full control, it is just to hard to compete with multiple heavy Allied landings in Alg.  I also do not think it is that easy to get a massive Japanese fleet into the Med.
    You’d almost have to bee-line directly for it and that leaves no defense in Sz 62.  Remember the US does have a DD and AC in the Pac to start and 3-4 ftrs, 2 boms, so it is not that hard to fake an Atlantic move then come back to Sz 56 on US 2 or 3.  The point here is the Japanese player cannot assume the US won’t do anything in the Pac.

    @Pin:

    So far we are pretty confident that the US must go Pacific mainly, the goal of this is not to kill the japanese fleet, but force it to stay together so they cant scatter all around the pacific, play cat and mouse, spread out subs in a lot of different sea zones etc, maintain the pacific NO of USA. while this is ongoing UK starts off making sure his fleet can sustain and start moving troops for africa + killing the Italian fleet as fast as possible, the US uses the 2 transports of EUS to shuffle 4 units ECAN to Marocco every turn. This combined with clever use of the the US pacific fleet (and the transport 41) keeps japan and Italy from totally breaking the UK economy.

    This lite shuck (4 US inf per turn) while putting the rest of your resources into the Pac does work quite nicely.  I’ve used this as well.

    @Unknown:

    Japan’s income in this game may be proportional to what it was in previous editions, as you demonstrated, but how long will it enjoy 60-70+ IPC cashouts? Each turn Germany and Italy can hold out is another turn that Japan rakes in the big bucks. So how does this compare to previous editions? I’m not sure, but my guess is that the european axis can hold out longer in this game. Also consider that Japan’s income explodes much quicker in this game than previous ones due to the increase in IPCs in the pacific and of course, NOs. All those turns of high cash outs translate into more and more Jap units on the board, units which the Allies will have to deal with at some point.

    But Japan also starts out weaker with 17 ipc in turn 1 and has to travel farther to get to Mos.  Yes, Japan’s income of 60-65 is a lot of units, but those units won’t hit the front lines for another 4-5 turns.  So if Japan earns 60 in rd 3-4, the Allies don’t need to worry about those units until rd 7-8.  That is a ton of time for the Allies to cripple Italy and help Mos against Germany.
    Off the top of my head I would say if the Allies have crippled Italy (only 9-12 ipc) and are able to land heavy in Kar via trns by rd 6 and Germany doesn’t have Cauc you are in great shape b/c the Allies can drop 16 units per turn into Kar from then on.  They can also be used to help against Japan in an emergency, like having your tanks move to Mos for extra defense.

    @Funcioneta:

    I think KGF is not even possible of do if Japan launchs a massive attack against America. They start with 5 trannies, can buy 2 more round 1 and probably more round 2. With so much trannies, after taking Pacific islands, Japan can send all of them loaded to a combo of sea zones (Hawaii sz and others) threatening Alaska, Wcan and WUSA in such manner USA cannot defend the three and possibily only WUSA, deadzoning wcan. Then, all Japan have to do is land the massive stack in Alaska and trading Wcan, setting a 4 x 4 chain of trannies and maybe a Alaska IC. This will, at least, halt USA in their continent, unable of aiding Africa or Europe (and Africa will be lost to italians in many KGF games were UK fails to build saf IC).

    By the time this occurs Afr and the Italian fleet should be in the process of being cleared, so at this point the US can freely go after or defend against Japan.  A proper US shuck starts in Wus on turn 1 anyway and slowly builds up to 8-10 units (for 4-5 trns to go to Alg).  I just don’t think that it is an inviting target for Japan, to see 8 inf, 2 arm in Ecan, 8 inf, 2 arm in Wcan, 8 inf, 2 arm in Wus.  So the US pulls back one turn and stacks 2 inf, 2 arm in Ecan, 14 inf in Wcan, 8 inf, 4 arm in Wus.  Is this a good target for Japan?

    @Funcioneta:

    The bad news are that it was possible in Revised were Japan had much less income (after round 3) and much less starting trannies

    The worst news are that in AA50 soviets cannot annoy Japan with token forces (as they did in Revised) because of larger distances and because Japan has so much income that they can still, while doing the Polar Express, send more guys to soviets and Africa than in Revised

    But supply lines are longer in AA50.
    The Soviets can annoy Japan you just wait until Novo or the last China territory, where you can threaten with your stack of Russian armor in Mos and Cauc.  Russia has about 10 inf out East that can be reatreated and it is definitely possible to get Russia near 10 tanks by round 6-7.  Sometimes the threat of attack is all you need.

    @Funcioneta:

    The horrible news are that western axis can easily beat by economy the UK+USSR combo even without Japan’s aid or at the very least equal them, leading anyway to axis economic victory in long run because Japan colects more than USA

    This is not true.  Remember the US is aiding UK and Russia early.  Russia routinely earns 30+ for the first 3-4 rds at least.  UK will earn between 24-30 and US can contribute 12-24 ipc (4 to 8 inf per turn).  In a KGF, Italy only gets 1-3 turns of a good income after that they are stuck at ~9-12.  UK and Russia most definitely can compete with Germany and Italy.

    @Lynxes:

    So, the two major strats for the Allies I think will be:
    KIF= all of US resources and most of UK goes vs. Africa and Italy, and UK devotes enough to ward off the fall of Karelia. UK builds Saf IC.
    Balanced KIF= US resources are divided between the above objective and building up a fleet in the Pacific that offensively distracts Japan and buys the Allies time to more effectively put the KIF strategy into place. UK as above.

    I agree with this.  I think the Allies can throw everything they have at Afr and the Italian fleet early with the intiention to kill the fleet and cripple Italy by rd 4.  After this the US has the freedom to confront Japan in the Pac if it wishes or just continue and try to actually take Rome or Berlin.

    @Lynxes:

    /bugoo

    In the '41 scenario, UK helps against Japan by sending troops over the Middle East to protect Caucasus, by landings in Algeria, builds in South Africa IC, or both.

    YES!!!
    Units that land in Alg (UK and/or US) in Rd 2, 3, 4 reach Trj in rds 5, 6, 7.  Meaning you can cut off Japan’s Southern route.  UK attacks/US finishes off.


  • Japan starts with atleast a 260+ army/ navy on the board…. its a moster. Were as the US after a good J1 should only have like 108+ IPC that can effect the Pacific.

    3 CV    14=42                  1 CV  =14             
    1 BB      20=20                  1  BB  =20
    1 CA      12=12                  4 Fit  = 40
    9 Fit      10= 90                3 DD  =24
    1 DD      8=8                    2 tran =14 
    4 Tran    7=28                  2 Bom =24

    18 Inf    3=54                    6 Inf  =18
    2  Art    4=8                      1 art  =4
    1  Arm  5=5

    = Monster  About 267          About  158
    Pacific theather.

    Yah, Japan is out of hand.
    They can make up the IPC income gap with the US by J2.
    And two transpots in J1 would help that alot because they could get their whole home force to china russia in J2
    Have fun stoppin this whale Ahab!!!


  • I think the Allies can throw everything they have at Afr and the Italian fleet early with the intiention to kill the fleet and cripple Italy by rd 4.  After this the US has the freedom to confront Japan in the Pac if it wishes or just continue and try to actually take Rome or Berlin.

    One caveat though: if Japan deploys its fleet aggressively vs. the West Coast, you really can’t wait since once your Pacific fleet is sunk it’s almost impossible to rebuild. You’ll be forced to build at least enough to defend yourself vs. a Jap carrier strike, but that doesn’t mean the basic strategy changes. You need a carrier and some auxiliary ships afloat off the West coast as a kernel of your Pacific fleet to have any chance of challenging Japan. (All this assuming abandoning the Pacific ocean is not your strategy.)


  • I still don’t see that Japan can be seriously challenged in the -41 map, NOs or no NOs doesn’t make any difference either.

  • Moderator

    @Lynxes:

    You need a carrier and some auxiliary ships afloat off the West coast as a kernel of your Pacific fleet to have any chance of challenging Japan. (All this assuming abandoning the Pacific ocean is not your strategy.)

    I will abandon, or at least make it look that way.  On US 1 the AC/DD either cover the UK trn (1 inf, 1 rt) and dd fleeing Aus or go to Sz 20 if it is safe from J air.

    I try to buy lots of ftrs so if I do have to go Pac I can just buy 1-2 AC with DD cover b/c I already have the ftrs available to land.

    A good counter (or deterent) to an early aggressive J fleet move toward the US is the early UK stack in Per.  Ind can be taken on J2, but UK has the ability to counter for 1-3 turns if Japan is only moving 1-2 inf there.  This usually forces Japan to make the full commitment and at least project strength with its AC/ftrs, buying the US the time it needs to set up in the Atlantic (rds 1-3).

    It is not that easy for Japan to get significant ground forces to Northern Russia, thru China, to India, and to Aus early on.  So you are usually only dealing with stacks of 2-3 inf for any particular area.  These can be countered by consolidated UK stacks in Per and a Russian stack in Novo (could move into China as needed).


  • Yes, Japan’s income of 60-65 is a lot of units, but those units won’t hit the front lines for another 4-5 turns.  So if Japan earns 60 in rd 3-4, the Allies don’t need to worry about those units until rd 7-8.  That is a ton of time for the Allies to cripple Italy and help Mos against Germany.

    I’m not saying that Japan can necessarily stop the Allies from crushing Germany and Italy because they’re cashing out high. What I’m saying is that, even though you’re right that Japan’s per turn income is comparable to previous versions, they will be in a stronger position to take on the Allies themselves by the time Germany and Italy fall. Its possible that the Japs could still be in a position to win even after Berlin falls. The “cost” of playing KGF, if you like, is higher in this edition; not because Japan makes relatively more per turn now, but because they accumulate more money/units over time while the Allies are in Europe.

    To be clear, I’m not advocating a KJF strategy. But, it may be more effective for the Allies (the US in particular) to not ignore Japan completely. Even a token force in the Pacific can work wonders at slowing down the Jap cash machine. There seems to be a sort of “diminishing returns” aspect in my view, where a couple extra units in Europe will help a little, but a couple extra units in the Pacific/Asia can help a lot.

    So I think a more balanced approach (one which still focuses on Europe) could be more effective than a pure KGF.


  • I have a similar experience as a previous poster; games where I’ve seen the Allies win were KGF.

    ~However~ in the games that were decisive Allied victories the US did not ignore Japan, they spent a portion of their IPC’s to harass Japan in the Pacific. How do you best do this as the US?

    Subs.

    and later in the game… subs + bombers.

    Just building 3 subs off the US west coast for the low price of $18 on US1 causes a serious headache for Japan. First, if Japan went for a US aggressive strategy on J1 that left their carriers deep in the Pacific, placing subs off the US west coast forces an immediate retreat. Aside from that scenario a couple of subs per turn changes the tactical situation in the Pacific dramatically. Japan can’t send transports around the pacific theater willy-nilly unescorted (unless they’re OK with sacrificing the transport… but this results in a net positive IPC trade for the US). Otherwise Japan has to keep their fleet consolidated into 2 (maybe 3) groups; meaning much less flexibility and slower expansion. Japan is also forced to build destroyers to counter subs, and destroyers cost more than subs so again this is a net IPC gain against Japan.

    In the end subs in the Pacific become a money-grinder for Japan. They have to spend $IPC to replace lost transports and build otherwise useless destroyers. Every $IPC spent by Japan to counter a US sub is an $IPC not being spent on land units into China/Russia. Meanwhile, the US still has plenty of $IPC leftover to send troops into the European theater and take down Germany.

    US subs seem like the most “bang for the buck” way to slow down Japan while the Allies methodically take Germany apart… my .02 😉

  • '18 '17 '16 '11 Moderator

    I wouldn’t really know if Japan can be challenged in 1941 without NOs.

    With NO’s, America can easily close the financial gap with Japan and even surpass Japan production wise with minimal effort from England and Russia. I’ve done it a number of times.

    The trick is to realize submarines for a useless unit in naval combat.  You might have a good offensive force with those 12-20 submarines, but the other guy with 9-15 Destroyers (same cost) has a better defense and has units to block your attack with so he can move into range of your fleet forcing you to retreat or go on the defense (making those 12-20 submarines almost completely useless.)

    I love nothing more as Japan or America than seeing my opponent putting submarines in the water because I know I can manipulate the situation to give me the edge no matter what happens.  You can’t block with submarines, so I can ignore any submarines you have and you cannot run submarines past my destroyers on picket duty, so I can block your fleet to my advantage.

    Of course, this assumes both sides have battleship(s), carrier(s) and fighters, maybe even a cruiser or cruisers as well. (Though, I find Cruisers of limited utility.  They seem good for England who is strapped for cash early on, but not so good for America and Japan who either want the two hit ability of battleships or the multiple units of Destroyers.)

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