Global 1940 2nd Edition OOB - The Beginner’s Learning Guide
Let’s move from talking about general Warfare Principles to Global 1940 itself. Oh, by the way I am not going to be talking about gambits or odd play. What we want to achieve is consistent play to win as many games as possible. Gambits do not fall into that category because either a) they require the opponent to not have seen the gambit before or react poorly to it to be successful or b) have low overall odds of success. We want to win every time! Not some of the time. In addition, this general overarching discussion is regarding strategy, not tactics.
So, open the Global 1940 Board and what do we see? As usual the Axis have centralized position. The Axis have greater firepower to begin the game. The Axis have the initiative; they will be the ones to determine the overall battlegrounds of the game. The Allies have more territory and money initially. What this means is the Axis will be trying to win the game and the Allies will be doing their best to slow them down, then hopefully stop them, and then push them back for an ultimate Allied victory.
WINNING THE GAME:
There is no argument that the Axis has the advantage in Global 1940 2nd Edition OOB. This is due to two factors.
The Axis only need to win on one side of the board to win the game. If we want a balanced game where either faction wins half of the time then the Axis can only have one third of a chance of winning the game on either side of the board. NOTE: It is easier for the Axis to win on the Europe side of the board than on the Pacific side of the board.
The Axis have five scenarios that can lead to winning.
• Germany takes Moscow.
• Germany takes London.
• Italy gets big in the Mediterranean.
• Japan wins in the Pacific.
• The game develops into a long-term money game and the Axis prevail due to collecting the same or more money than the Allies.
For the Allies to win they must stop the Axis on both sides of the board by stopping all five of their scenarios. Just one is enough for the Axis to win but it takes all five to make the Allies happy.
The key for the Allies is to put more pressure on one side of the board to gain an advantage while stalling the other side of the board. This balancing act is easier said than done. As one of my gaming group members once said, “Axis and Allies is like a balloon; if you push too hard in one area it bulges in another.”
GERMANY GOES FOR MOSCOW
Germany starts with enough units on the board, and quickly gains enough money to buy additional units, that Germany can take down Moscow. Once Moscow falls the Germans push to Egypt and the game is over. Unfortunately, there is no way to stop the Germans from taking Moscow without giving the game to the Axis elsewhere. The key issues for the Allies are a) how long does it take and b) how much does it cost. Losing Moscow does not lose the Allies the game. Losing Moscow too cheaply or too quickly does as it makes the fall of Cairo inevitable. The Allied defense is fourfold. 1) Knowing it is a main target Russia builds and acts accordingly; buying tons of infantry and harboring every unit for the final Moscow battle. 2) Assistance in the form of UK units come to Moscow via the Middle East to delay the inevitable. 3) An Allied fleet reduces German reinforcements aimed for Moscow by attacking the Atlantic Wall. 4) The Allies prepare a defense of the Middle East and Egypt so that once Moscow falls the Axis still cannot win the game. This is the most difficult winning scenario the Allies face.
GERMANY GOES FOR LONDON
Personally, this is the one scenario I love to see the Axis try as the Allies. The reasons being are it is a) a lot easier for the Allies to come back from the fall of London than it is the fall of Moscow and b) unlike Moscow once the Allies see the Germans going for London the Germans have a limited window of Opportunity to take London. Also, it is easier to defend London than Moscow because the Germans need to build and protect their transport fleet to be able to move their ground units against London. The key for the Allies here is not to lose London on the cheap. It must cost the Germans a ton of money and units so even once it falls the Germans are in a weak position because the Bear of Russia is going to come knocking on the door. Surprisingly, once Russia gets into German territory they collect more money than Germany does. Ouch. As long as the Allies do not leave London weak this is not the scenario to worry about.
ITALY GETS THE MEDITERRANEAN
If Italy gains control of the Mediterranean then the Axis will be collecting too much money and will overpower the Allies. This is the easiest way for the Axis to win but luckily it is also the easiest scenario for the Allies to stop. Once UK blows up the Italian fleet in the Med, kills the Italian ground troops in Africa and convoy disrupts SZ97 the Italians are basically removed from the game.
JAPAN WINS IN THE PACIFIC
Though Japan is surrounded by four enemies and has far less income than the four combined Japan can become a monster if left unchecked. For Japan taking India and China is not that difficult. And, as before, the Allied strategy is forcing Japan to spend time and cash accomplishing those goals so that by the time they turn to go for Sydney or Hawaii they are now contained by a large US Fleet.
AXIS COLLECTS ENOUGH MONEY TO WIN LONG-TERM
The final scenario for the Axis comes about when the Allies have performed admirably and have stopped the previous four game winning scenarios. However, the Axis was still able to take enough territory to be close to or even with or, heaven forbid, ahead of the money the Allies are collecting. That is bad news for the Allies. Due to their centralized position and for the most part more efficient use of Land Units and Air Units versus Naval units the Axis do not need to be collecting the same or more than the Allies to win. The Allies need to be ahead by about $10 a Round. If that is the case they are winning a long-term money game and if not, they are losing.
ROLES OF THE POWERS
So, what does each Nation or Power have to do to be successful? What is their role in the game?
AXIS: Win the game by achieving one of their five scenarios…
GERMANY is the main antagonist on the Europe side of the board. It is up to them to win the game. As a land centric Power, with lots of money available to them in the east, typically their goal is to take Moscow and then drive for Egypt. They must defend their coastline from Allied Landings to maintain their income and to deprive the Allies of the opportunity of getting France back into the game. Or even worse losing Berlin.
JAPAN all by herself in the Pacific, will either try to win the game, if the US ignores it too much, or be a constant irritant forcing the US to spend monies in the Pacific that they desperately want to be spending in the Atlantic. While outnumberd Japan can knock out one or two of its weaker opponents and become sizable if the Allies are not careful.
ITALY is the weak sister of Germany. In fact, every true German wishes Italy was just more German territory to feed more income to German Factories and remove the dreaded possibility of Rome falling to the Allies. Normally Italy’s role is reduced to defending German and Italian territory and producing some limited can openers for the march to Moscow and Cairo. It is not unusual for Italy to be doing everything it can just not to be taken. Played correctly by the British Italy should be a non-factor in the game.
ALLIES: Win the game by pressuring one side of the board more than the other to gain an advantage on one side while stalling on the other side…
RUSSIA is the main target of the Axis. Thus, they need to play defensively unless the Germans go for Sealion. The longer Russia lasts, and the more money it collects and puts down in troops, gives the Allies time to gain advantages elsewhere on the board and be ready to repel the Germans once Moscow finally falls.
USA is the key to the game for the Allies. How and where the US spends their money is the difference maker. The US will collect more money than any other Allied Power and unlike every other Allied power its capital is safe from the Axis. Depending on Allied strategy the US will either a) go all out in the Atlantic for a few Turns then turn its full attention towards the Pacific, b) go 100% into the Pacific for many Turns to rout the Japanese and then turn towards Europe or c) have some balance between the two sides of the board.
CHINA is one of the minor Powers that has a lot of importance in the game. Its role is to kill Japanese ground troops. While it cannot stand against a concerted Japanese effort the more troops it kills the harder it is for Japan in the Pacific.
UK EUROPE has the toughest job in the game as it is the closest Power to Germany, is immediately at war with the Axis, and has the most critical initial missions. UK must protect its Capital, knock Italy out of the game, assist Russia in the defense of Moscow, distract Germany and protect the Middle East from Germany after Moscow falls or is turtled. Simple right? Job one, after defending London, is taking Italy out of the game by taking control of the Med, Middle East and Africa. Once that is accomplished it can move on to reinforcing Moscow and start landings on the Atlantic Wall. But Italy comes first! The benefit of playing UK is at least you know what you need to do.
UK PACIFIC Like China there is not a lot India can do to stay alive if Japan focuses on capturing it. India’s mission is to stay alive as long as possible and make any capture of Calcutta a Pyrrhic victory.
ANZAC is the other minor Power that plays a big role. ANZAC is the death by a thousand cuts for Japan. Making them trade the Money Islands and acting as US Fleet blockers. ANZAC’s job is to force Japan to spend money on them so the US can concentrate on getting a superior fleet versus Japan’s.
FRANCE is, well, ummm… does not really have a role in this game except to die on G1.
Remember as the Allies all you are trying to do is slow the Axis down, kill as many of their units as you can, so that when they come for the final push your money advantage overwhelms them.
GERMANY 1 (G1)
As I mentioned earlier it is important for the Allies to recognize what the Axis is doing to be able to counter it. Since Germany is the main antagonist here are some prime examples of G1 options:
• 100% ground unit buy for Germany. The Germans are going to go for Moscow on G6, G7 or G8.
• Major IC in Romania. The Germans are going for Moscow on G6.
• Carrier and two transports in SZ112 or SZ113. The Germans are going for Sealion.
• Submarine, destroyer and carrier in SZ112. The Germans may be going for Sealion though more likely they are building a fleet to contest the British and fight for the Med. This is more a long-term strategy than a short-term strategy.
TAKING YOUR TURN
Here are the four steps to consider when you prepare to take your Turn:
- First and foremost, always look to see if your capital is safe. What can the enemy do to you this Turn and the next Turn? No matter how important some other objective is if you fail to protect your capital you just messed up.
- Are there one or more VIP areas that must be taken or protected to protect my capital down the road or to achieve my main objective?
- As part of my main objective what can I do to the enemy and what do I need to buy to accomplish it?
- Are there any attacks of opportunity that, while not part of my main objective, assist me in accomplishing my main objective? As tempting as it may be, any attack that does not assist in accomplishing your main objective, should be ignored.
As discussed, the Axis has the advantage in Global 1940 2nd Edition OOB; significantly. How much of a bid the Allies receive is up to each Player’s desire to be the Axis or the Allies. Whatever amount the bid is, it should be used to accomplish the Allied goals of slowing the Axis down and making life more difficult for the Axis and to assist the Allies in accomplishing their own goals. Bids should be used to:
- Protect the British Fleet – as I already said ships cost a lot and saving ships means not having to buy them later. Protecting the UK fleet not only makes it easier for the British to fight for the Med and make Atlantic Wall landings later it also protects London. Any bid placement should include a fighter for Scotland and a submarine for either SZ 111 or SZ 110. (Mandatory)
- Taking Italy out of the game is job #1 and a submarine in SZ 98 to maximize Taranto assists in that. (Mandatory)
- Ground troops for taking out Italian units in Africa or a transport in SZ 71 to do the same.
- Submarine or destroyer in SZ 91 to defend the UK cruiser and assist in the attack on SZ 96.
- Submarine in SZ 106 to defend the UK destroyer and transport.
- Infantry in India/West India/Burma to bolster defense. Or a mechanized infantry in Burma to threaten FIC on UK1 if the Japanese do a J1 declaration of war.
- Submarine in SZ 62 to protect the transport.
- Infantry in Russia to defend Moscow.
- An artillery in Amur to pin more Japanese troops in Manchuria.
I hope you learned something reading this paper. The goal was to highlight key points regarding how to play Global 1940 that will help you win more games.