Posts Tagged ‘wargaming

19
Apr
08

Storm of Steel; The Fall of Berlin; Allied Victory

“Zero is not a lot.”~Michael Rozos

 

It all came down to Britain’s strike at the German heartland. Could I take it before Russia was defeated?

I attacked with everything I had, holding to Clausewitz’s’ maxim of concentration of forces at the point of determination. Seven tanks, two bombers, two fighters and several infantry. Germany still boasted a formidable stack of infantry, but my hope was to at least weaken Mike enough so that America could finish the job on it’s turn. America would later invade Southern Europe and handily defeat what amounted to the last of the Hitler Youth.

To the battleboard we went, and when the dust settled, and the blood had clotted, Britain found herself the victor, with a single tank holding Germany. Mike looked at Germany’s IPC count, which sat at zero. “Zero’s not a lot.” he said. Nope. sure isn’t, Mike.

The game would be decided in Russia. Japan mustered all her available forces and pushed into the Soviet capital, which finally fell before the Imperials. But the victory was to be short-lived.

The next turn I was able to build 10 (!) tanks in Germany with Britain, as well as land amphibious troops in Karelia for a possible counter-assault on Moscow. There was no need for British intervention, however. The last five remaining Russian infantry attacked a single Japanese tank, and liberated the Motherland.

With America building stacks of armor and Infantry, Britain’s supreme world-power looming, and Russia still in the game, Mike unconditionally surrendered.

All and all it was a great game. It could have gone either way up until the next-to-last turn.

 

19
Apr
08

Sinking Ships, Rising Sun

This game of Axis and Allies has turned out to be one of the strangest that either Mike or I have ever played.

The two Island-nations, Japan and Britain, are the prime powers in the world, Japan having swept through east Russia with little or no resistance and Britain invading France twice and finally establishing a firm bulwark, reinforced with American infantry and armor.

Russia continues to stave off any attempts at her subjugation. The Germans were never at any point able to capture vital Leningrad, and because of the resources needed to maintain momentum after several defeats, they were unable to hold Africa, which remains in complete Allied control. A mere two territories remain in German control: Southern Europe and the Rhineland herself. Only a stack of Wehrmacht remain, while Britain, the most powerful nation in the game now, coils for a final strike. But will it be in time?

Perched and panting at the gates of Moscow, a growing Japanese horde is preparing for a killing blow. The victory is in the balance. Should Moscow fall before Berlin, it may give Japan the IPC boost and land-based industrial complex it needs to push through the rest of Europe.

If Berlin falls first, the Brits can probably reinforce Moscow before she falls.

Japan gained complete control of the Pacific when Mike launched a huge sea-attack on my fleet. I’d built four subs, had two American battleships, an aircraft carrier with one plane and two transports. Mike’s fleet was just as formidable, perhaps more so, but I expected to at least momentarily cripple his ability to ship troops over to Russia.

Instead, the American fleet was vaporized with only two Japanese transports going down. I lost well over 100 IPCs in that battle. America is now relegated to using a few transports to reinforce the Western Front. Mike rolled something like six one’s out of eight die rolls in the first round of the battle, sending the Americans to Davy Jones’ Locker.

The battle of wills continues. It will be decided today, though it’s unclear who has the advantage at the moment. A few bad die rolls will probably decide the thing.
May the best man win…

 

18
Apr
08

Operation: Hun-Slayer

 

Current Location: Coffee Underground, Greenville South Carolina

Concerning: Operations to destroy Axis Powers, in the control of expert Axis+Allies player, Michael Rozos.

My opponent, Michael, is a very good player. He honed his skills against an old roommate of his: Jeff. Right after Mike got out of the army in the 90’s, he moved in with Jeff who’d also just mustered out. Jeff, while in the army got himself into a bit of trouble it seems, and ended up at Ft. Leavenworth military prison. During his stint, he played A+A virtually everyday, refining most aspects of the game down to a science. It was a religion of sorts. You couldn’t touch Jeff’s dice, every move was choreographed, knowing the outcome that one could expect from attacks on certain territories. In that sense, it became much like chess is to the highest level players: A battle of will in which both players grind it out, in hopes their opponent will make the slightest mistake.  

This reminds me of something that I read by Kurt Vonnegut. He was a POW in WWII. Through an error in paperwork, the British troops held captive were allotted more food and coffee from the Red Cross then the other prisoners, so they were able to build their bodies up, doing hundreds of pushups and pullups everyday. Also, they became card-sharks and masters of chess. What man can do when he has no distractions…

I digress. Japan made some major encroachments on Russian soil. Almost all of my army is of course fighting Germany, so Japan is chomping up the IPC’s. Mike made a bold attack on Alaska, landing Japanese troops there and momentarily taking the territory. I would soon remedy that…

On America’s turn, I moved my newly reinforced navy north, settling just south of the Japanese force near Alaska. I attacked his troops with my battleship’s off-shore bombardment as well as two fighters and an infantry. Soon, Alaska was back in my hands. I finally managed to strike a painful blow on Japan when I sent two submarines on sneak-attacks to his fleet. They both managed a hit on the first turn, sinking two transports, before withdrawing to fight another day.

Now, the Russian front. That’s where the game is always decided. The Russians must slow the German tempo down, while the Germans must gain IPCs almost every turn. Karelia is key, and I had already repulsed the first attack there. Building all infantry at the beginning of Russia’s turn, I decided to move west, pushing into Eastern Europe with a titanic force of infantry (Over 20 units) as well as several tanks and fighters. I sought cripple any attempts by the Germans to mount a counter-attack on Karelia. The problem I faced, was that Germany still had a transport and Battleship in the Mediterranean, allowing them to wing troops behind my front lines and into the Caucasus.

I decidedly won the battle, and still retained a huge force in Eastern Europe. Things were looking up. Actually, I’d never seen Russia this strong at this point in the game. But can they hold out against the fast-rolling Japanese?

Mike did counter-attack with the Germans, and he did manage to take back eastern Europe, but all that remains there are four German tanks. He also destroyed three British Transports in the North Sea. I’m having a tough time bringing British power to bear. The German airforce had destroyed my amphibious ability, but now the Reich only has one bomber.

I decided to build another bomber for Britain, so that I could do a little damage until I had control of the seas. I built several American transports and infantry. With those, and the American bomber, two British Bombers, I’ll begin the slow process of an IPC-bleed on Germany. IPC bombing and the liberation of Africa should deny the resources Germany needs to maintain its Blitzkrieg.

 

 

 

17
Apr
08

Summer, 1942

Well, last night’s game was cut a little short because of set-up time and the fact that Mike’s phone kept ringing.

We completed the first turn and now are in the middle of Japan’s turn. We’ll continue the struggle tonight. Mike will get drunk and lose. Badly.

The first turn of an A+A game is critical. For experienced players the first turn is comprised of standard troop purchases and maneuvers, but can be severely effected by unlucky die rolling.

Playing Russia, I stayed with the only plan that gives her any fighting-chance to survive past the first few turns: I purchased eight infantry and placed them all in Karelia, expecting a large German force to make a push there in an attempt to gain the factory and the strategic position to assault Moscow.

I further reinforced Caucasus with infantry and a fighter plane. Then I moved a couple troops east to help against the predictable though unhistorical fight against Japan.

In Russia’s battle sequence, things turned out quite well. I destroyed Germany’s transport and Submarine in the Atlantic with a sneak attack from my own sub.

Next, it was the German war machine’s turn. Mike made his purchases, then proceeded with a massive invasion of Karelia, using an armored force comprised of at least eight tanks and a large stack of infantry and one aircraft. I knew it would be a tough fight, but here, Russian conscripts proved worthy. I repulsed the German attack, forcing them to retreat back to Eastern Europe, and leaving the Ukraine defended by a single German infantry unit. The normal quandary applied here:  One tries to adhere to the military maxim of troop mass, but is tempted to defend all his territories for fear of losing IPCs.

In other parts of the world, I didn’t fair so well against German might. My British battleship was destroyed, and German Panzers roared across the Suez Canal into Anglo-Egypt Sudan, easily defeating the British garrison there. Britain only retains a single troop in South Africa. Not good.

Japan managed to take China and the Soviet Far East. Hopefully America can soon place enough pressure on the Imperials to make her pay the ultimate price…

I’ll make sure to employ Suzie’s mathmatical theorem’s–the one’s I stole off the comments section. It was kind of like decoding the Enigma machine.

16
Apr
08

Spring, 1942

My friend Mike and I just started a game of Axis and Allies. A+A is a WWII “simulation game”, the term being used rather loosely here. We’ve been playing since junior high.

I’m playing the Allies, Mike’s playing the Axis. He’s already started his trash-talk, asking me if I wanted to surrender before we began the game. Yeah. Ok, Mike. Hope you don’t mind seeing Berlin and Tokyo made into parking lots. Nuremberg trials anyone?

It may take us a few days to finish the game. I’ll keep you updated on how it goes.




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