I don’t have a problem winning with the axis. Most of my wins come from Germany taking Russia G5, G6, or G7.
Why? If you strafe yugoslavia g1 and retreat into Romania and lose 2 inf only. You get a decent stack that is ready to hit Russia G5 assuming you move it towards Russia each round. If you hit too much, that is okay, the G6 attack has better odds because you add in the bulgaria stack and the norway/finland stack as well.
There are concessions you have to make. You have to give up norway/finland, usually empty west germany and hold Germany the round before you attack Russia (you buy bombers to max your odds of winning Russia so you aren’t buying inf the round before a major battle).
I have had to give up france to take Russia many times. Retaking france is much easier than taking Russia, but it can take 2-4 rounds (Germany’s income goes really high from Russia, volgograd, and caucasus… and if you are pushing into the middle east for the VC win (which you should be doing) it goes even higher.
G7 Russia sometimes happens when things are going so well that 80% chances at Russia is stupid when waiting a round yields 99%. Like those blow out games happen sometimes in dice where you get to buy mech/armor g4 on germany (g5 mech/armor placements on germany are silly because they simply don’t hit Russia on g7).
Typically G4 you buy inf to hodlgang and bombers because that is what reaches russia for the final attack (armor on novgorod/ukraine if you got it).
I do not dow Russia g3 so I can’t comment on later attacks of Russia. I always dow russia G1 or G2 (fast game or standard play depending on how much time I have).
So that is that.
In the Pacific I go into every game with the high hopes of winning in the Pacific. It happens sometimes. Crush india J3 or J4 and hope things are going well enough to take Hawaii someday. Sometimes it happens, sometimes I bust, sometimes I am forced to just have Japan, India, SEA, and all my ships air died, but hey I gave it a go!