I love that photo of the Abraham Crijnssen. For a modern view, pull up Google Maps and go to the Dutch Navy Museum in Den Helder. Switch to Street View just south of the museum and you can see her today, sans foliage.
The Pripet Martian
@The Pripet Martian
Posts made by The Pripet Martian
True History or Monty Python Sketch?
I stumbled upon this recently. The following is a true story, but could just as easily be a Monty Python sketch:
The HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen was a Dutch minesweeper in WWII. Based at Surabaya (Java) when the Japanese attacked, she was ordered to head to Australia along with other Dutch ships in March 1942. Finding herself alone, and with a top speed of 15 knots, odds of escape seemed slim…until the crew decided to disguise their ship. Using assorted jungle foliage and paint, the crew turned the Abraham Crijnssen into an island.
Sailing by night and anchoring close to real islands by day, the Abraham Crijnssen avoided detection and arrived in Australia 20 March 1942, the last Allied ship to escape Java. She served the rest of the war in the Royal Australian Navy, and is today docked at the Dutch Navy Museum.
This story puts a smile on my face every time it crosses my mind. And when I imagine John Cleese as the Abraham Crijnssen’s captain…
RE: USA into the Middle East
As I see it, the absolute best the US could do is 1 Armor + 1 INF from Eastern/Central US and 2 INF from Hawaii into Persia on US4, and that’s assuming the European Axis declare war on the US in Round 1. There are just so many potential obstacles there: the presence of Axis warships or aircraft in the Med, U-boats remaining in the Atlantic, Japanese movements in the South Pacific.
In terms of distance from the US, Persia is almost the most remote territory on the board. With that in mind, I think the best way America can help her allies - the best way to defend Cairo/India - is to force the Axis to defend elsewhere. Trite though it may be, “the best defense is a good offense” applies here. American landings in Norway or Southern France, for example, can occur much faster than a Persian Expeditionary Force, draw Axis attention away from Cairo and potentially aid the Soviets.
RE: Barbarossa in Europe only?
Destroying the UK Home Fleet on G1 is sound strategy. Once accomplished, maintaining even a small Luftwaffe presence in Western Germany/France forces the UK to buy warships before they can buy transports and invade the mainland. If you’re bombing London every turn, the UK shouldn’t have a sufficient invasion force assembled before the Americans arrive on the scene.
When I invade the USSR, Phase One is a two-pronged attack, aimed directly at Leningrad and Ukraine. If you take those ICs, there’s no need to build one in Romania. Up until the turn in which I capture those two territories, I SBR them.
At that point, Phase Two kicks in: I shift the bombing to Moscow and Volgograd and advance on those territories. If the opportunity presents itself, you can ignore Volgograd and drive straight for Moscow, but I usually find the additional IC in Stalingrad really comes in handy. And yes, taking the more valuable southern Soviet territories should have higher priority than, say, Vologda or Smolensk. Caucasus is the northern gateway to the Middle East. Never forget that, while Iraq, Persia and NW Persia are worth 4 IPCs to the Allies, they’re worth 10 to the Axis.
Don’t forget to park a U-boat in sz 125 to deny the Soviets those 5 IPCs. Also, once Leningrad is yours, it should be fairly easy to send a small force blitzing through the northern territories to Novosibirsk and cut off that 9 IPC per turn flow.
RE: Barbarossa in Europe only?
I prefer a G2 Barbarossa. From G1 until Moscow falls (G5-7), I have three primary purchases:
- Armor - Allows for rapid movement from Germany to the front, and from captured ICs to Moscow.
- Mech Infantry - Same as above. 1 Armor + 1 Mech Inf = 1 Inf + 1 Art, in terms of attack power, but moves twice as fast.
- Strategic Bombers - Use for SBR on London, Leningrad, Volgograd and Moscow. Force UK and USSR to spend as much as possible on repairs, instead of new units. Bombers based in France also project force into the Atlantic, forcing US to spend more on warships and thus delaying the inevitable invasion.
On the defensive side, I like to keep token forces in Normandy and Southern France, while slowly building forces in France and Western Germany for counterattacks. If there aren’t many Allied destroyers about, I buy 2-3 U-boats and place them off Normandy to further slow the Americans. And if the Italians can take Gibraltar and place significant forces there, so much the better.
As for taking Washington or Ottawa…I’ve done a Sea Lion feint and taken Quebec instead. It’s fairly easy to get a landing force to Canada, but a semi-competent American player will just push it right back into the sea. Likewise, the Americans would have to make a mistake of epic proportions for you to take Washington.
RE: Global 2nd edition Q+A ( AAG40.2)
Japan can land on German/Italian territories and doesn’t appear to need to declare war on Russia or even UK/ANZAC (Pg 35 names them as part of the Axis and Pg 20 specifies 'Units on the same side can share a territory or sea zone)
That’s correct, in theory. In practice, however, Japan can’t get a bomber to Ukraine without declaring war on someone, as the Japanese bomber wouldn’t be allowed to fly over Russian or UK Pacific territory and land in Ukraine without a DoW. The Soviet Union political situation (p.36-37) and Powers Not at War with One Another (p.15) shed light on the subject.
RE: Research and Development
I think the biggest issue with R&D in the OOB rules is the randomness. As many have pointed out, how disappointing is it for the Soviet Union to achieve a research breakthrough, only to end up with improved shipyards, for example? With good house rules for directed research, R&D has great potential to upend existing strategies and allow for the creation of new ones (I’m playtesting house rules for R&D right now, and will release them when they’re ready).
The flawed OOB R&D rules have led many to avoid that element of the game, and it’s a shame. Considering the role technology played in World War II, a conflict which began with many countries utilizing biplanes and horse cavalry and ended with jets and the atomic bomb, playing A&A without it is almost criminal.
[G40] Expanded Scrambling?
This isn’t my house rule (yet), but it just occurred to me that the OOB rule for scrambling air units is a bit odd. Specifically, why is scrambling restricted to adjacent sea zones? Why not adjacent territories, as well?
While I haven’t playtested it yet, I’m just curious as to whether anyone has tried this and if so, what they thought of the rule.