I think I agree with both of you. I think Japan should just about ignore China on turn #1. That’s to say use everything you can on the other allies as they defend on a 1 on the first round, anything that can’t be used elsewhere should be used against China but nothing really risky.
Japan sooner or later will need that extra 1 or 2 IPCs to get that extra victory point. Often in latter rounds that is the China territories so China should keep that in mind.
I’d agree that it always seems to take ‘just one more round’ for the India invasion. Since Japan must push outwards for 3-4 rounds a good Australia threat might cause resources to be diverted there, then as you fall back perhaps you fall back really fast right into India.
I plan on VPs for Japan so I spend 80% on navy, mostly subs, the odd transport to get units of Japan. I thought I’d never need more transports as Japan but I usually end up build 1-2.
I haven’t played AAP in some time so I am still trying to figure out how to beat Japan. It ain’t gonna happen with the VPs at 22.