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Dutch Cats Get Lucky

 
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Dutch Cats Get Lucky - 7/12/2010 3:39:24 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 18, 1942 -

Japanese TFs continue to offload at Manus. I'm not sure what is going on there because my opponent still hasn't captured it. I wonder if he forgot to send some combat troops and has been unloading Support Troops and supplies, with no one there to capture the empty base? Eventually, later on in the day phase, another TF showed up and started to unload combat troops, so maybe he will capture the base next turn. (However, some of the Japanese troops were lost in the surf on the way in. This may just be a Bad Luck landing for my opponent.)

More Japanese troops were also offloaded at Cebu, but there the Philippine troops happily shot back, causing some casualties. In addition, it was a “Surf's Up” day at Cebu too, so more Japanese troops were lost to unlucky landings. Despite the additional troops – there are now three Infantry Regiments and an Artillery Regiment at Cebu – there was no Japanese attack, nor any counterfire when the Philippine troops fired off their Artillery attack at the end of the day.

The Air War brought something new as 16 Zeros tried to sweep the skies over Lashio. However, 27 H81-A3s of the AVG were waiting for them. The Japanese lost three Zeros up front and another four were lost on the way home. The AVG wrote off a couple of planes afterwards but lost no pilots. I still have plenty of H81-A3s because I upgraded one of the AVG squadrons to P-40Es.

It appears that the Zero sweep was supposed to herald a Japanese offensive aimed at Lashio, because later on I spotted a column containing 5 Japanese LCUs on the road to Lashio. So I will finally get a chance to test out my Defense-in-Depth in the region, as I moved a number of bomber squadrons into postition to start to hit those Japanese troops. I also ordered my 4Es to go after those troops. Practice against Ground Troops ought to bring up everyone's experience fairly quickly.

I also have a half dozen good Fighter units in the region too – three of them being AVG and the other three being British Hurricane squadrons with good pilots. My opponent will have an interesting choice – he can try to cover his troops, or he can try to hit Lashio, or he can defend his airfields. If he tries all three at the same time I should be able to have some fun. BTW – I have my planes located in a half dozen different bases so the odds ought to be better that not everyone will be rained out on the same day.

There were also a couple of big Zero sweeps of the skies over Darwin. But I had pulled back the British Buffalos already and am resting them. I am also sending the one Buffalo unit in the region that can upgrade to Hurricanes back to a big enough base to allow the change. I hope to spring a reasonable surprise in the region within the week.

Other Japanese Air Attacks hit Bataan, Oosthaven, Medan, Tjepoe and Benkoelen. Japanese Recon planes flew over Cairns again for the first time in a while. But now I have some PT boats on patrol at Cairns and Townsville, so any incoming Bombardment TFs will have a less easy time of it. I've also almost finished pulling the last Australian unit out of PNG, so I ought to be able to put my Australian Catalinas back on Naval Search within a day or two.

Finally, my Dutch Catalinas were useful nuisances this turn as they attacked a number of Japaness ships around Sumatra and even put a bomb into a Tanker in Palembang Harbor. My opponent has another interesting choice here – put up some CAP over Palembang and other local bases, or put up Big Zero Sweeps over Darwin. I don't think that he can do both.

BTW – in addition to the Japanese ground thrust at Lashio it appears that my opponent is making another thrust at Ichang. It will be interesting to see if he can take it as easily as he did Nanyang as I've got much better Chinese units in Ichang. In any event, I brought my Chinese bombers out of training and set them to attack the incoming Japanese columns.

I've also started a different strategy in China as far as my LCUs go. Since my troops Starve in the Cities and Feast in the Countryside I've started to send Chinese troops to a number of Rough Ground crossroads and strategic positions, as well as starting some off to see if some of the Japanese bases that are behind the Front are being garrisoned or not. We'll see if I can distract my opponent a bit.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 151
The Biggest Allied Air Attack of the War - 7/13/2010 3:26:59 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 19, 1942 –

More Japanese TFs unloaded at Cebu and Manus. The Philippine troops at Cebu continued to fire at the landings, but with no success. Then a Japanese TF arrived at the empty base of Wyndham in Northern Australia and started to unload. So the Japanese Invasion of Australia has finally begun, after some mis-starts at Darwin.

Daylight brought the beginnings of the Battle of Lashio as a squadron of the AVG jumped some Oscars on LR CAP over the Japanese troops on the road to Lashio. The AVG squadron chased off the Oscars and shot down at least one. The main Air Battle took place later as the largest Allied Air Attack of the War arrived over the Japanese troops on the jungle road.

The Allied attack consisted of 6 Liberators, 5 B-17s, 7 Hudsons, 15 Blenheims, 11 Hurricanes, and 9 AVG H83s. Opposed to them were 1 Zero and a dozen Oscars. The Allied fighters blasted the Japanese Defenders out of the air, shooting down at least a half dozen with no Allied losses. No Japanese fighters reached the Allied bombers. But with the lousy weather the Allied aim was poor, even at 6000 feet, so the results of the air attack on the Japanese troops were relatively minor. But this served notice that Japanese advances in the region will be subject to non-trivial attacks.

Elsewhere, Japanese air attacks hit Darwin, Bataan, Oosthaven, Medan, Tjepoe and Benkoelen. Zeros and Oscars showed up on CAP over the Harbors at Palembang and Samarang. Dutch Catalinas attacked ships in both bases and hit an xAK hard in Samarang. So my plan to divert Japanese Air Power worked quite nicely.

I've now sat down all of my bombers in India and also the Dutch Catalinas. I'll let them rest and let the Japanese Air Units take some Operational losses. But, weather permitting, I'll send them out again in another turn or so.

The Japanese advance on Lashio is pretty serious. My bombers attacked the 33rd Division, 15th Army, 143rd Infantry Regiment and 55th Mountain Gun Regiment. I've got around 200 AV behind Level 3 Fortifications at Lashio, but they aren't likely to hold up too long aggainst the incoming attack. The only break may be if my opponent didn't send any Combat Engineers along. In any event, I hope to give my Bomber crews some good practice during the Battle.

Elsewhere, some Chinese bombers hit the Japanese troops on the road to Ichang, and Japanese bombers hit Chinese troops on the road away from Loyang. I wasn't really intending to abandon Loyang this turn, but I forgot to rescind the Marching Orders for the troops. Oh well, I didn't want to retreat under attack, so this will work out okay.

Japanese troops finally captured Manus. It appeared that my opponent did forget to send Combat troops at first. And at Cebu Japanese troops fired off a bombardment attack that did little. The Allied counter-fire actually did more damage to the Allied troops than the Japanese fire.

Finally, some Japanese troops arrived at Tjepoe on Java this turn. They should be able to capture the base easily since the only Dutch troops there have already been defeated once and retreated.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 152
Afrikakorps in Oz - 7/14/2010 1:54:54 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 20, 1942 -

The night phase was quiet except for Japanese landings at the empty base of Wyndham in northern Australia. A second Japanese TF joined the first one. This second TF had trouble with the surf and lost a number of armored vehicles.

Once the Japanese units eventually got their act together and attacked Wyndham it turned out that my opponent had landed an Infantry Battalion, a Recon Regiment, and two Armored Regiments. I expected my bombers to hit the Japanese units this turn, but they didn't. Later on when I checked, it turned out that I had positioned my Bombers in the right place, but simply forgot to give them orders to attack... (sigh.) Oh well, next turn will be different, particularly if my opponent takes his time landing a Air Support unit at Wyndham.

The usual Japanese Air Raids hit Bataan, Tjepoe, Benkoelen, Oosthaven, and Darwin. Japanese Recon planes flew over Katherine. I hope that my opponent sends bombers over Katherine, because I have plenty of British Fighter pilots there waiting for a few shots at the Japanese.

I set my Dutch Catalinas back to Naval attacks this turn. It will be interesting to see if any of them get through the Japanese CAP again. I also set even more Bombers in India this time to hit the Japanese column that is on its way to Lashio. And even more Bombers are moving into position to increase the air attacks from multiple bases.

There were three Allied bases captured this turn by the Japanese. Wyndham, of course, was a walk-in since there was no opposition. A Japanese Infantry Regiment captured Tjepoe easily and drove the already-defeated Dutch troops further down the road towards Soerabaja. And three Japanese Infantry Divisions captured the now-empty Loyang. Surprisingly, the Japanese troops in Cebu only tried an artillery attack again instead of a Deliberate attack.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 153
RE: Afrikakorps in Oz - 7/14/2010 8:05:59 AM   
Carny

 

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This AAR continues to be impressive. I'm still not really sure why Darwin and Port Moresby are such a magnet for players of the Japanese side, but clearly they are considered necessary.

I'm looking forward to seeing how things settle out, especially as your opponent becomes more proficient with using his various forces. AE does have quite a learning curve, as I am finding in my PBEM game. We are in August of '42, and while I think I've given him a roadbump or two, especially in Malaya, its very much been a matter of me building up forces and trying to reinforce key locations while he pretty much does as he likes.

How are you doing when it comes to shifting fuel and supply to Australia/NZ? Has your foe made much effort at New Caledonia/Noumea, or at taking Luganville?

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 154
RE: Afrikakorps in Oz - 7/14/2010 11:15:20 AM   
ADB123

 

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quote:

How are you doing when it comes to shifting fuel and supply to Australia/NZ? Has your foe made much effort at New Caledonia/Noumea, or at taking Luganville?


So far, except for one Pleasure Cruise by the KB early on that accomplished nothing except to use up fuel, my opponent has left the South Pacific alone. He has been very busy in the Solomons, but I don't know if he is simply building up a network of mutually-supporting bases or is setting up for a venture further south.

It doesn't matter much to me because I have ignored the central South Pacific Islands, other than to set up plenty of Naval Air Search bases. Instead I have been mainly focussed upon making all of the Hawaiian Islands a massive death trap in case the Japanese show up, and also the major stepping stone into the Central Pacific later on if I want. I have been building up way-station bases in the Far South Pacific. I'm moved minor US forces to New Zeeland and Australia, but for the most part both regions are still on their own.

As far as fuel and supply to Oz goes, I was moving a lot in from Cape Town for a while, but thanks to the Funny Game Mechanics, almost all of the Supply ended up at Sidney (where I currently have around 600,000 supply points) and almost all of the fuel ended up at Adelaide, where I happen to have most of the ships for the region. So it's a pain because I can't refuel subs at Brisbane because the fuel won't move there, because I don't have ships there, because I don't want the ships to be sitting ducks for a KB raid... and so on. So I'm now shipping a massive amount of fuel and supply to Hobart because all of my troops in Tasmania are there, and the fuel shouldn't move anywhere. I've also shipped a lot of fuel and supplies to New Zeeland. I've got most of the Australian and all of the New Zeeland cruisers there, and I have moved in one US P-40E squadron.

Thanks for the interest!

(in reply to Carny)
Post #: 155
RE: Afrikakorps in Oz - 7/15/2010 12:50:16 AM   
Carny

 

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Clearly my logistics skills are poor. I'm just now starting to build up significant supply and fuel in the South Pacific. My opponent has pretty much just taken the Solomons too, though he did grab New Guinea and Northern Oz. In any case, I do read your AAR, and at least from the number of hits it gets, I ain't the only one.

Fight on!

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 156
RE: Afrikakorps in Oz - 7/15/2010 1:32:43 AM   
ADB123

 

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quote:

Clearly my logistics skills are poor. I'm just now starting to build up significant supply and fuel in the South Pacific.


Right from the beginning I went through all of my ships from Australia to India and sent my long range freighters to Cape Town, my long range troop ships to Aden and my long range tankers to Abadan. I moved my shorter range ships to the Arabian Sea ports of India and the Tasmanian sea ports of Australia. Therefore I had plenty of ships available to send supplies and fuel to Australia and started to do so right from the arrival of the first Supply convoy at Cape Town.

I've sent a few big supply/fuel TFs to New Zeeland, but not as many as Oz. I'm not operating big fleets in the region right now so I don't need a lot.

I also have been regularly sending single-ship long range transport TFs with supplies and fuel from the Canal Zone bases to Tahiti and vacinity. This has allowed me to build up a small stock pile to supplement the AOs that I have down there.

But mainly I have been sending the occasional very big TF instead of multiple small TFs. I find that a 30 ship TF that contains plenty of escorts and an AMC or two tends to discourage almost all submarine attacks from even starting. And I'm moving too far away from the Front for my opponent to be able to send the KB raiding, particularly since the TFs are relatively infrequent. Anyway, most of my opponent's subs keep on patrolling the coast of Australia from Melbourne to Townsville. They give my LBA plenty of ASW practice, and I don't bother sending any TFs that way, so this essentially keeps the Japanese subs out of my hair.

So, so far, so good. This strategy won't work later on when I start to move big combat forces into the region, but for now its fine for me.

(in reply to Carny)
Post #: 157
The Lumberjack Song - 7/15/2010 3:45:30 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 21, 1942 -

The only activity during the night phase was yet more Japanese landings at Cebu. This time one of the incoming TFs got too close and the Shore Guns let loose, causing a number of casualties. Later on the Japanese troops, now consisting of two Infantry Regiments, an Armored Regiment, an Artillery Regiment, and and Engineer Regiment, fired off an Artillery attack that did no damage. I am totally puzzled why the Japanese don't just do a decent Banzai charge and get it over with, but I'm not complaining to my opponent. I'll just try to remember this as a lesson when I finally start to invade Japanese-held bases.

The Day Phase Air Attacks started out promisingly as a number of H83As jumped a handful of Oscars and a Zero in the hex down the road from Lashio. The AVG pilots shot up the Japanese nicely and didn't lose any planes or suffer any damage. Much later on the main Allied Air Attack came in to hit the Japanese troops in the jungle. There were 15 more A83s, 7 B-17s, 6 Liberators, 17 Blenheims, and 13 Hudsons. Four more Oscars and another Zero opposed them. The H83As had a good time with the Japanese fighters and then the bombers emptied out their bomb bays from 6000 feet.

The sole result was the damaging of one piece of field artillery, despite there being some 26,000 Japanese troops on the ground. My opponent got quite a kick out of the futility of the Allied attack. I thought about all of the trees that were hit instead of Japanese troops, and the Lumberjack Song came to mind. Oh well, I'll rest my Air Crews and try again in another turn or two.

I guess that I ought to be more realistic in my expectations, after all, the many and frequent Japanese Air Attacks on my troops haven't been doing a lot of damage either. So today, while Japanese planes hit Bataan, Oosthaven, Medan and the retreating troops in Java, only those retreating troops in the open took any serious damage.

Dutch Catalinas attempted to attack Japanese ships in Palembang Harbor again this turn, but the Cats were turned back by Zeros on CAP. Next turn I am going to try to spring a surprise on the Japanese bombers that have been hitting Oosthaven, and the Japanese troops that are closing in on Oosthaven.

BTW – the Australian bombers didn't fly against the Japanese troops in Wyndham again this turn. But this time it was due to Weather, and not my forgetfulness.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 158
Bataan Under Attack - 7/16/2010 3:27:43 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 22, 1942 -

This was a strange night – nothing at all happened.

Daylight brought Japanese Air Raids on Darwin, Bataan and the Dutch stragglers in Java. Then a couple of Japanese Bomber squadrons raided Oosthaven where they were met by 3 Dutch B 339s. The Dutch fighter pilots shot up the Japanese bombers until the fighters ran out of ammo. Several Japanese planes were shot down and a number damaged. Afterwards I moved the B 339s out of Batavia to a less obvious location while I wait for another opportunity. Unfortunately, the Dutch Bomber attack that was supposed to hit the Japanese troops on the road to Oosthaven didn't fly.

Four Chinese Bomber squadrons did fly this turn and hit the Japanese troops on the road to Ichang. The Chinese bombers didn't cause much damage, but they did leave notice that Japanese troops in China need to be protected too.

Then things got hot over northern Australia. First off a number of Buffalos swept Wyndham but the Hudsons were late. By the time the Hudsons got there Carrier Zeros arrived on LR CAP and roughed up the old Australian light bombers. Then the Japanese CV TF sent off a Zero sweep of Katherine which shot down several Buffalos on CAP. This was followed by a Kate attack that was escorted by Zeros. So it obviously wasn't just a CVL off shore.

In the face of this major raising of the stakes by my opponent I started to pull back my forces even further. Right now Tennant will be my First Line in the region, with Daly Waters as the next fallback position. I need to draw the Japanese forces far enough inland so that they can't receive air support from the Japanese Naval Air units.

Never-the-less, I still get the feeling that the Northern Australian action is a Diversion and that the main Japanese target is northeastern Australia. So I am continuing to build up strength along the East Coast, particularly at the inland bases that can't be hit by Naval bombardments.

Elsewhere, yet another Japanese amphibious TF unloaded more troops at Cebu. Once again the Defenders fired off a number of guns at the incoming Japanese troops and caused a fair number of casualties. Afterwards, despite the addition of a third Japanese Infantry Regiment, the Japanese forces only fired off an Artillery attack. If I could only get supplies into that base I might hold it forever.

Speaking of supplies and holding out, the first Japanese ground attack hit Bataan this turn. Two Japanese Infantry Divisions, along with dozens and dozens of other ground units, did a Deliberate attack. The attack lowered the Fortifications to Level 3 and achieved a 1:2 result. The Japanese took 6174 casualties while the Allied forces took 2388 casualties. Importantly, many of the Japanese casualties were destroyed squads. Considering that the Allied troops at Bataan have been out of supply and bombed daily for ages, this is a quite good result. Things won't continue in this manner for long, but it has been a good effort.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 159
BBs Back at Darwin - 7/19/2010 2:53:46 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 23, 1942 -

Yet another Japanese TF started to unload at Cebu this turn. This time the TF was a bit further offshore and only a couple of Allied shore guns fired at it.

Next, Dutch sub O21 shot 4 torpedoes at a Japanse DD near Wnydham, but missed. The Japanese ships missed O21 in turn. I'm not certain, but I think that this was the CV TF that had harassed Katherine a turn or two before.

Then came my opponent's Big Experiment of the Turn, as once again a Japanese Bombardment TF hit Darwin. The only Allied unit left at Darwin is the Emery Point Fort, and it fired back as before, hitting the Japanese ships quite nicely. In the end the results were as follows: BB Ise – 8 hits, BB Nagato – 4 hits, CA Hyguro – 15 hits, on fire, CA Myoka – 9 hits, on fire, and CL Izugu – 3 hits. The Naval Bombardment caused some damage to the Fort Unit, but not a lot, and not to its main guns. If I could get supply to Darwin that base might hold out for a long time regardless of the Naval Bombardments.

Daylight brought the first Japanese air attacks on Soerabaja in quite a while. Surprisingly enough the attacks were aimed at the Port. Is my opponent actually thinking of trying to send some TFs into Soerabaja? I'd love to see those CD guns get into action!

There were other Japanese air raids on Bataan, Medan and Benkoelen. Otherwise things were reasonably quiet.

The Japanese besiegers of Bataan tried out an Artillery bombardment this turn. It had very little effect. At Cebu the Japanese troops finally tried a Deliberate attack which worked out reasonably well for them as the Japanese achieved a 3:1 result and lowered the Fortifications to Level 2.

My opponent is not being quite as passive in Sumatra as appeared for a while as Japanese troops showed up at Benkoelen this turn. Although the Dutch troops at Benkoelen have been fortifying the base for months, there aren't many troops there so I don't expect the base to hold out too long.

In Java, some Japanese troops caught up to the retreating Dutch troops just outside of Soerabaja, but I think that my troops can reach the Relative Safety of Soerabaja before an attack can be launched. We'll see next turn.

Now that I've pulled all of the Australian troops out of PNG I've got my Australian Catalinas back on Naval Search and Recon missions. It appears that there are some ships in port at Port Moresby, so I am sending some B-17s to pay a visit next turn, just in case they can find some sitting ducks. I believe that there are some Zeros at Port Moresby, but I'm hoping that the Flying Fortresses can blast past them.

Speaking of Blasting Past, the weather has cleared up a bit in Burma so I am sending my bombers and fighters there to attack the Japanese troops that are just outside of Lashio again. I set an AVG squadron on LR CAP over the Japanese troops in the hopes of driving off some of the Japanese CAP. With any luck this ought to be a sizable attack. It will be interesting to see if the Bombers cause more damage than the last couple of times that they tried.

Elsewhere, the Airfields at Prince Rupert reached Level 6 this turn, so I am starting the process to send some of the troops at Prince Rupert on to bases in Alaska.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 160
More BBs at Darwin - 7/20/2010 2:48:56 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 24, 1942 -

There was another Japanese Naval Bombardment of Darwin this turn as BB Haruna and BB Kongo fired from outside of the range of the CD guns of Emery Fort. There was a fair amount of damage to the Port and Air Fields, but this is something that my opponent will eventually have to repair, so I don't care.

BTW – SIGINT told me that at least one part of the 21st Japanese Infantry Division is preparing to attack Darwin.

The only Japanese Amphibious Landing this turn showed up at Langsa in Sumatra. It was definitely “Surf's Up” as a number of Japanese troops and pieces of equipment were lost on the way in. My opponent is landing a fair number of units there, including a JNLF, a Guards unit, a Recon unit and an Engineering unit. All of my troops in the region are holed up in Medan so the Japanese forces will have to march to them.

BTW II – I had some Dutch Catalinas at Medan set for Naval Attack and they did attempt to attack the Japanese Amphibious TF at Langsa, but my opponent had a few Oscars on LR CAP over his TF and so my Cats couldn't get through to the targets.

The daytime weather was generally bad in most locations this turn, which translated into cancelled air missions and scattered air missions. So my Air Force in India (+Burma) sent a lot of planes over the Japanese troops on their way to Lashio, but my planes came in several waves. That wasn't too bad because my AVG squadrons flew a strong LR CAP over the hex and engaged the Japanese CAP quite effectively. By the end of the day the Japanese had lost 11 Oscars, half to Air-to-Air combat and half to Operational Damage, while the Allies took no losses at all.

This time my bombers, especially my 4Es, did more damage to the Japanese troops, but it still wasn't a Killer Blow by any means. Since the weather forecast is calling for even worse weather next turn I sat down most of my bomber units, set those that I didn't sit down to Recon, and cancelled all of my LR CAP flights in the region.

My B-17 attack on PM wasn't successful. The Forts ran into a few Zeros, which they got past, but the weather was horrendous and the bombadiers couldn't find any targets. Once again, I'm letting my Air Crews rest next turn and will try again once the weather clears up.

There were Japanese air attacks in the usual places, including very heavy attacks on Bataan and Benkoelen, and perfunctory attacks on Darwin, Soerabaja, and the retreating Dutch outside of Soerabaja.

BTW III – Those Dutch units did make it to Soerabaja before the Japanese pursuers could catch and attack them.

There were a number of Japanese land attacks this turn. First off, the Japanese besiegers of Bataan attempted a Deliberate attack. It turned out to be a Very Poor Idea, as they got a Bad Dice Roll and 1:55 results. The Japanese took 1551 casualties, including a lot of destroyed units, against 256 casualties for the Allies, most of which were simply disabled. That ought to cause my opponent to sit back and think about things for a bit.

There was also another Japanese Deliberate attack at Cebu. Here the Japanese troops did better, achieving a 2:1 result and reducing the Forts to Level 1. At the same time at Benkoelen, two Japanese Infantry Batallions did a Deliberate attack that got a 1:1 result and lowered the Forts also to Level 1.

Finally, enemy troops reached Oosthaven this turn. I don't think that my opponent has any large units, but he doesn't really need them because the Dutch forces at Oosthaven are neither large nor strong.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 161
Japanese Paratroops at Darwin - 7/21/2010 1:46:33 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 25, 1942 -

Much of the night phase consisted of Coast Watchers reporting Japanese ships in various ports in PNG and the Solomons. My opponent is certainly staying busy in that region. There was also a Japanese invasion of some empty island base in the Philippines called Dinagat. And Japanese TFs continued to unload at Langsa in Sumatra.

Daylight brought a lot of Japanese air action. Zeros swept over Darwin, Oosthaven and Katherine. I didn't have any fighters over any of those bases so all this achieved for my opponent was Operational losses for his Zeros. Japanese LBA hit Benkoelen, Darwin, Oosthaven, Bataan and Soerabaja.

But then, out of the clouds off of the northern Australian coast, came a HUGE KB strike against the Emery Fortress at Darwin. This was a full strike – Pearl Harbor-sized! Following this, the Mini-KB sent in its own air strike against the Port at Darwin.

I found the total overkill quite fascinating – it goes to show just what the Japanese can put together from their Carriers. There are only three places where my forces would stand a chance against such an attack, and Darwin definitely wasn't one of them. Oh well, this means that I can stop worrying about Japanese Carrier Air sneak attacks in the Pacific for a while.

In comparison, the Allied air attacks this turn were weak and misbegotten. The Chinese bombers hit the Japanese troops on the road to Ichang and caused a little bit of damage this turn, but not really a lot when you consider that those Japanese troops are out in the open. A couple of Oscars showed up during the second Chinese strike and caused a bit of damage to the Chinese bombers, so I set the Chinese planes to a different target for the next turn.

Then I watched in surprise and horror as the Liberators from India, along with some Hudsons, flew in unescorted against the Japanese troops on the road to Lashio. Urrrg – they weren't supposed to be flying but I forgot to set them to Rest last turn. That's the problem of having so many Air Units in the region now at so many different places – if I'm not extra careful a memory lapse can be costly. And this was costly as Oscars and Zeros showed up on LR CAP and shot down a half dozen Hudsons. Oh well, live and learn.

There was also a lot of Japanese Ground action this turn. The Japanese besiegers of Bataan fired off an Artillery Bombardment and caused light casualties. Then the Japanese troops at Cebu launched another Deliberate Attack and finally captured the base with a 3:1 result, destroying both Philippine units. Next the Japanese troops at Benkoelen launched their own deliberate attack but they only achieved a 1:2 result and the Forts were left at Level 1.

At Oosthaven, however, the Allied straggler troops there were easily kicked out by the attacking Japanese. The Allied troops will attempt to march to an empty dot base, but I doubt that they will make it. Speaking of stragglers, Dutch stragglers in Timor reached Dili and were attacked by the small Japanese units that were their supporting the Air Base. Although the Japanese achieved a 4:1 result the Dutch didn't retreat again.

The Japanese troops at Langsa captured the empty base this turn. I guess that they will start to march to Medan soon.

And finally, Japanese Paratroops landed at Darwin and easily captured the base from the battered troops at Emery Fortress. The rest of the Australian troops are already pulling back into the desert. If my opponent brings in an Infantry Division, as SIGINT suggested, I will pull back to the South. If not, I will play games with the Infantry and Armored Regiments that are now at Wyndham.

(in reply to ADB123)
Post #: 162
Surf's Up at Munda - 7/22/2010 3:21:43 AM   
ADB123

 

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March 26, 1942 -

This was another quiet night phase, other than Dutch sub KXII being chased away from Makassar by a Japanese PB. There were the usual Coast Watcher sightings in PNG and the Solomons, and the Coast Watchers of Darwin made their debut.

The day phase was unusually quiet. The only Japanese Bomber attacks were on Bataan. There were plenty of Japanese Recon flights, including flights over Derby and the Northeast Australian bases.

From the Allied side, Chinese bombers at Changsha hit some Japanese troops on the march in the open near Wenchow. I pulled the Chinese bombers back to Chungking afterwards for a rest and to keep them out of the way of Japanese retaliatory air raids.

A Japanese TF started to land troops at Munda this turn. The Japanese troops suffered a number of accidents in the surf. To a good extent, Surf is the major Allied weapon at this point in time.

There were a number of Japanese ground attacks. The Japanese besiegers of Bataan fired off another Artillery Bombardment but the Allied troops suffered only minor casualties. The Japanese Imperial Guard Division, along with an Engineering Regiment and an Armored Regiment arrived at Tjilatjap and launched a Deliberate Attack. Surprisingly, the attack only achieved a 1:1 result, although the Fortifications were reduced to Level 2. And Dinagat was captured by the Japanese.

Japanese subs have started to show up along the US West Coast again after an absence of some time. My West Coast Bombers got back into the groove of chasing Japanese submarines. Despite the Japanese subs, a Transport TF that included BB Maryland arrived safely at San Diego this turn. Maryland was sent into the Shipyards for repairs on the last bits of damage from the Pearl Harbor attack, as well as for the January BB upgrade. BB Tennesee will have its repairs complete within a few more days and then it will be sent back to Pearl Harbor.

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Post #: 163
The Zombies of Timor - 7/23/2010 3:48:59 AM   
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March 27, 1942 -

This was yet another night where nothing happened. I guess that isn't bad, because it means that my opponent isn't currently invading anywhere new.

Daylight brought Japanese bombing attacks as usual, but in some new regions. My opponent obviously got nervous over the swarming ant-like movement of Chinese troops all over the Front Lines and beyond, because he sent a number of bombers to hit one Chinese LCU that I mistakenly allowed to venture out into the open. Even a land-based Mabel got into the act.

The Allied troops at Bataan received the lion's share of Aerial Attention this turn, but Benkoelen and Tjilitjap also got their fair share of Death from Above.

Almost no Allied Air Missions flew this time. Even more of the Recon missions were rained out. Fortunately, some of the Naval Search Planes did notice the KB sailing in the middle of the Gulf of Carpenteria. This allowed me the opportunity to reposition a number of my own air units in Northeastern Oz to both get a better view of where the KB is headed, as well as to spread out the effects of any upcoming attack. I have no intention of throwing away my Air Forces in Australia at this time on any futile attempts to discomfort the KB.

Ground Combat was fairly busy again. The Japanese besiegers of Bataan fired off another Artillery Barrage, causing light casualties once again. The Japanese forces at Tjilitjap attempted another Deliberate attack, but they only achieved a 1:1 result although the Fortifications are now down to Level 1. The various troops at Dili attempted to dislodge the starving Dutch stragglers again, but despite getting a 15:1 result out of a deliberate attack the Dutch are still hanging on, with more coming Zombie-like. (There's a great B-Movie title: “The Zombies of Timor”! ) And undefended Munda was captured.

BTW – the first Japanese troops reached Lashio this turn, so I pulled out the AVG squadron that was there. I don't expect the Defense to hold very long, and I don't want to lose those planes and pilots to a Ground Attack.

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Post #: 164
Lashed at Lashio - 7/24/2010 4:25:44 AM   
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March 28, 1942 -

Baybay in the Philippines was occupied by the Japanese over night. The only other night action was Dutch sub KXV being run over by a big Japanese Surface Combat TF just off of Sampit. The Japanese TF contained 4 BBs, 2 CAs, a CL, and 9 DDs. The DDs hit KXV a couple of times but only caused light damage. Never-the-less, I am sending KXV to Colombo for repairs and eventual relocation into the Bay of Bengel.

The day phase started out with a 24 Zero sweep of the empty skies over Katherine. Seeing that, I assumed that the Baby-KB was out there in the Arafura Sea. Then a much more serious air attack flew in out of the northeast – 119 Vals escorted by plenty of Zeros. The Airbase at Katherine was hammered very hard. So the KB has stuck around to support the Japanese expansion in northern Australia. My opponent appears to be much more serious about this Front than I first thought, so I am accelerating my withdrawal from the region.

The Japanese Army Air flyers weren't going to be left out, so Bomber attacks hit Merak on the northern tip of Java. It appears that a Japanese invasion TF is coming along next turn. Bataan and Benkoelen were also hit by Japanese bombers this turn.

I was able to send out one tiny surprise this turn as three Dutch Mitchell medium bombers flew out of Batavia and hit the Japanese Infantry unit that is just outside of Oosthaven. Other than that almost all of my planned Air Operations were rained out, with the exception of the 4Es in India which flew broken up raids over Mandalay that did little damage.

Most of the Japanese Oscars that are usually at Mandalay ended up doing a big sweep over Lashio, but there were no Allied planes there to attempt to contest the skies.

The Ground Phase started out with another Japanese Artillery Bombardment of Bataan. The Allied casualties were still relatively light, but they are increasing all the time. Next came another Japanese Deliberate attack at Tjilatjap. The attacking Japanese achieved a 2:1 result and reduced the Forts down to Zero, so I expect Tjilatjap to fall next turn. And at Dili the Japanese hammered the Dutch Zombies again, but the Zombies kept on coming.

But the important story of this day was the shockingly easy fall of Lashio to the very first Japanese assault. The Japanese 33rd Division, the 143rd Infantry Regiment, the 55th Mountain Gun Regiment, and the 21st Medium Field Artillery Regiment launched a Deliberate attack that achieved a 4:1 result, reduced the Fortifications from 2 to 0, and kicked out the eight Allied defending units who started to retreat towards Bhamo.

Although the Allied units at Lashio weren't great, they weren't bad either. I had spent months carefully building up these units and had expected that they would bog down the Japanese in a manner similar to what the Dutch have been doing. Instead, the units are crushed and will be struggling through the jungle for months before they reach India.

In any event, this was a very sobering lesson for me. The units at Lashio had Supply, they hadn't been bombed, and they hadn't been bombarded either. They also had good leaders. But they just weren't up to the job. This now suggests strongly to me that my defensive line at the Burma-India border could collapse just as easily. So I will need to take some time to reconsider my strategy and to try to figure out how to do things better at the “next Lashio”.

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Post #: 165
Benkoelen Finally Falls - 7/24/2010 9:47:15 PM   
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March 29, 1942 -

The only news during the night phase was that the unoccupied base in the Philippines called Siagao was occupied.

Daylight brought Katherine being swept by a couple of squadrons of Zeros. I don't have any fighters on CAP there so it didn't matter. The only other Japanese air attacks were bombers hitting Bataan and Benkoelen.

Three Dutch Mitchells flew against the Imperial Guards Division at Tjilitjap, but three Oscars showed up on LR CAP and disrupted the Mitchells enough so that they bombers missed their target. Then some Dutch Catalinas attacked a Japanese Transport TF at Oosthaven. My opponent had a couple of Petes and a Jake on CAP. As one would expect, the floatplanes were useless in this role, even against the Dutch Cats. The Cats got through the CAP unscathed, but they missed the ships that they attacked.

The Ground War continued with yet another Japanese Artillery bombardment at Bataan. For whatever reason this attack had an even lesser effect on the Allied troops than the other recent bombardments. The Japanese at Tjilatjap then did yet another Deliberate attack and only got a 1:1 result, with the Forts at 0. The Dutch at Tjilatjap continue to be dogged in their defense. And the Dutch Zombies at Dili withstood yet another Deliberate attack.

However, at Benkoelen the Japanese brought in an armored Recon Regiment to join the two Infantry Battalions that were already there and they captured the base with a 4:1 result. Now the Dutch defenders have a long hike along the coast to the next Dutch base.

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Post #: 166
The End of the Line for Tjilatjap - 7/25/2010 1:20:49 PM   
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March 30, 1942 -

The only activity during the night phase was the occupation of Tagbilaran in the Philippines. Otherwise, it was just a matter of Coast Watchers reporting Japanese shipping in PNG, the Solomons and off of Northern Australia.

Daylight showed that my opponent had shipped Air Support into Oosthaven as a large number of Japanese bombers and fighters took off from that base to bomb the Dutch stragglers in the next hex. Japanese bombers also hit Bataan, Tjilatjap, and the Dutch stragglers that are retreating away from Benkoelen.

Allied Air action was limited to the few Dutch planes in Batavia and surroundings. Dutch Catalinas attacked a retiring AMc off of Batavia, but missed their target. Then a few T.IVa floatplanes joined a few other Cats to try to hit a Japanese TF that is moving into the Indian Ocean via the straights off of Oosthaven, but the Petes and Jakes on CAP were able to distrupt the attack and drive off the float bombers.

There was also a lot of Japanese Recon over the British bases along the Indo-Burmese border. It appears that my opponent is still considering an invasion of the Bay of Bengal, but who knows, this may all be a ruse while he moves elsewhere. Maybe he is planning a serious invasion of Australia instead. There have certainly been enough ships sailing to Wyndham and Darwin to suggest that he is building up strength at both bases. And, given the strength of the Japanese at this point, it's not beyond belief that he might attempt moves in both regions simultaneously.

Ground attacks continued at the existing sieges. There was another Japanese Artillery attack on Bataan, but the Allied casualties continued to drop. There was also a Shock Attack by the Japanese troops at Dili, but the Dutch Zombies continued to stagger towards the foe.

More importantly, the Imperial Guard finally captured Tjilatjap, driving the Dutch down the road towards Batavia. I've been fortunate that my opponent has not been attempting to cut off my retreat paths – this way my troops continue to cause him headaches instead of just surrendering.

The end of March brought a large number of Allied troops to the Pacific Rim. They don't change my strategic situation greatly, but they do allow me to plug more holes in my Defensive Plans. The other piece of good news was that US BB Tennesee came back into service this turn, fully upgraded and repaired.

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Post #: 167
Silly Sub Skipper - 7/27/2010 3:59:59 AM   
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March 31, 1942 –

The night phase was quiet for the most part other than the usual Coast Watcher reports out of the PNG/Solomons region, until the skipper of Dutch sub O20 decided to surface and attack a Japanese xAKL off of Singapore. Given the lightness of the guns on board that Dutch sub, this wasn't a very bright idea. The gunners on the xAKL hit the Dutch sub four times before the sub's skipper realized that he was in trouble and ordered the sub to submerge and sail away.

Speaking of subs, more Japanese subs showed up off of the West Coast of North America this turn. This is giving my LBA some useful practice.

Daylight brought Japanese air raids out of new bases such as Darwin, and Japanese planes based in other new locations such as Langsa. The planes out of Darwin bombed the Air Fields at Katherine with Zeros on Escort. I'm not attempting to defend Katherine, so the only thing bothering the Japanese bombers was flak.

Japanese bombers also hit Bataan and the Dutch stragglers outside of Oosthaven. Enough bombers hit the stragglers to wipe them out, despite some interference by Dutch B-339s out of Batavia. The 339s came back to escort the Dutch Mitchells when they flew against the Japanese troops that are also outside of Oosthaven. A few Oscars flew CAP, but the Mitchells got through and hit the Japanese troops nicely.

This raises a question – why isn't my opponent hammering the Air Fields at Batavia so that my handful of Dutch planes can't operate Irritation Attacks out of there?

In Ground Action, the Japanese troops at Bataan sent off another Artillery Attack, which once again didn't do a lot. Then Japanese troops captured Djambi, which wasn't defended.

I then got to set things up for the upcoming April 1, 1942 turn. There are a lot of US ships that will receive upgrades, including the very important upgrade of the Clemson Class DDs to DEs. And I'm upgrading my old subs to SSTs in order to be able to move supplies and troops around behind enemy lines.

So since a new month is starting I will post a series of screen captures of the current status of the key locations in this Match. If you compare against the March 1 screen captures you will be able to see what a month has done. To start it out, here is the Intel Screen:







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Post #: 168
Northern Oz - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:01:12 AM   
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Here's the current situation in Northern Australia:






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Post #: 169
Java - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:02:25 AM   
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Here's the situation in Java:






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Post #: 170
Sumatra - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:03:20 AM   
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Here's the situation in Sumatra:






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Post #: 171
Indo-Burma - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:04:31 AM   
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Here's the situation in the Indo-Burma region:




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Post #: 172
China - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:05:48 AM   
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Here's the situation in China:





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Post #: 173
Philippines - April 1 1942 - 7/27/2010 4:07:18 AM   
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And here is the situation in the Philippines. The rest of the Pacific hasn't changed in the last month or two so there is no good reason to post other map captures:





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Post #: 174
Smart Sub Skipper - 7/28/2010 3:36:45 AM   
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April 1, 1942 -

My opponent sent a note along with the turn, mentioning that “...at last i've found out where your merchant marine has been hiding - or some of them at least!”. My first reaction was – how did he get the KB so far south so quickly? But when I ran the turn it turned out to be something much simpler – sub I-122 torpedoed an xAK off of Perth. The xAK was in a Transport TF from Cape Town that is bringing supplies to Oz via Perth. Because of the distance involved I don't send Escorts along with the Cape Town TFs.

The other ships in the TF ought to make Perth and safety next turn, and I ordered a second TF that is further behind to sail to Adelaide instead, which will take it south of the usual Japanese sub hunting grounds off of Perth. Under other circumstances I would bring more Naval Search/ASW Air Units to Perth to chase off the Japanese subs, but I can't spare any right now because of the invasion of Northern Australia. So I'll just avoid the region around Perth instead.

The only other activities were the arrivals and departures of numerous Japanese ships at Darwin and at various bases in PNG and the Solomons. It looks as if my opponent is planning a serious and major drive down the desert road south from Darwin, so I am expediting the withdrawal of my forces from forward positions in the region. I'm going to use some Armored Units as blocking forces to allow my slower forces to get back to the Rail Line.

I'm also starting to pull back LCUs that don't contain CD guns from the Coastal bases of northeastern Australia. I'll keep the units as a mobile reserve where they can't be hammered by Naval Bombardments. I still expect Japanese landing in northeastern Oz.

The general level of action during the daylight hours was fairly low. Japanese bombers hit Bataan repeatedly, but the only other base that they hit was Medan, and that was in a rather half-hearted manner. More and more Japanese TFs are arriving at Langsa, so it appears that my opponent intends to attack Medan by land from the north.

The Dutch East Indies Airforce was active again this turn. If only they had been this active and effective a couple of months ago. Dutch Mitchells, accompanied by Dutch P-40s, blasted the Japanese LCUs that are just north of Oosthaven, causing substantial casualties to the Japanese forces. Since I've sent the Dutch to hit the same enemy unit twice in a row I have now ordered the Dutch Air Units to attack Tjilatjap instead. Sooner or later my opponent will sweep the Dutch from the skies again, but for now I'll let them get a little bit of revenge.

BTW – Japanese troops are now moving towards Soerabaja. Fortunately, the Forts at Soerabaja finally reached Level 4 this turn, so I'm hoping that my troops can delay the Japanese for a bit.

And finally, employment at Shipyards everywhere has skyrocketed as hoards of US ships are in for upgrades. I also ordered a number of xAKs changed into AKEs. I'm attempting to plan ahead and learn from my opponent's mistakes with his Empty Magazine naval bombardments.

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Post #: 175
Dutch and Chinese Heroes of the Day - 7/29/2010 4:14:34 AM   
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April 2, 1942 -

The night phase was quiet other than an undefended base named Rambutyo that was occupied by the Japanese. The only other item of note was that a damaged xAK in a large Allied Transport TF sprang a leak just as it arrived at Tahiti. One of the risks of making up very big TFs as I do, is that every so often a couple of ships in the TF collide, and that is what happened to this ship a couple of turns ago. So the rest of the TF has now refueled and is continuing its way to Hawaii, but the two damaged ships will sit in Tahiti. They won't repair there, even with the presence of an AR, but at least they shouldn't sink either.

Daylight brought some uninspired Japanese Aerial Bombing of Soerabaja and Medan. I'm not sure why my opponent had his bombers in the Philippines take a break from bombing Bataan.

Chinese bombers hit a Japanese column that is sitting on the road to Ichang. My opponent hasn't moved those troops in a while, but I thought that I would hit them anyway. My Chinese bombers got through a couple of Oscars on CAP and hit the Japanese troops quite nicely. Now I'm moved the bombers to Changsha to hit other Japanese troops that are moving in the region. My opponent is finally starting to react to my moves with my Chinese troops instead of me always reacting to his moves.

The Dutch Air Force continued to surprise me as a number of attacks flew against Japanese occupied Tjilatjap. The first attack, by Mitchells and P-40s, did the most damage and caught the Japanese CAP sleeping. Follow-on attacks by Patrol planes did less, but they will cause my opponent to decide to do something in Java.

My opponent continued his active Recon of northeastern Australia, as well as Katherine and Daly Waters. He also sent Recon flights over multiple bases in the Indo/Burma region. I am doing the same thing to him in that region, so the air is fairly full of Recon flights going both directions.

My opponent did try an Oscar Sweep of Kalemo where a few AVG P-40E pilots wandered over. Despite the altitude Jump of the Oscars the AVG pilots held out quite well against three times as many enemy planes. But I don't really want them being attrited over Kalemo so I removed their Drop Tanks, which ought to keep them at home futher behind the Lines.

BTW – at the end of the Air Phase some Dutch P-40s from Batavia returned the favor by sweeping Tjilatjap and shooting down an Oscar there. In this case the Dutch P-40s had the altitude advantage.

BTW II – I decided to try some tit-for-tat for next turn and I ordered my 4Es in India to hit the Airfields at Mandalay. In theory, the weather ought to be tolerable, so the Big Boys ought to fly.

The only Ground battle was another Japanese artillery attack at Bataan. This time the Allied casualties were even lighter than before.

The most interesting news of this turn was in Burma, where it appears that my opponent might be pulling out some of his troops instead of continuing on towards Myitkyina. I've increased the number of Recon planes in the region to check out Lashio as well as Mandalay and surrounding bases, just to get an idea of what is going on. If my opponent does pull out I won't try a counter attack at this time because a pull-back simply means that my opponent will go somewhere else, and from what I can tell from repeated Japanese Recon flights, that someplace else may well be a base in the Bay of Bengal.

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Post #: 176
The KB Hammers Java Again - 7/30/2010 2:58:34 AM   
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April 3, 1942 -

Every so often in this game I get the urge to just go off and do something, almost anything, with the forces that I have at hand. Then I get a turn like this one and the urge subsides as I realize that there is very little that I can do against any serious Japanese moves at this time.

The Night Phase saw a couple of Dutch subs get into action, but without success. Sub KX took a shot at an SC off of Soerabaja but missed. Fortunately for the Dutch skipper, the Japanese escorts gave up quickly on the hunt for the sub. It turned out that this was a very large and very heavily escorted Transport TF.

Then sub KXII was chased by a PB off of Makassar. Once again the sub got away, but this was also one of those cases where the sub's skipper elected not to fire off any torpedoes at the available targets.

Daylight brought a series of Japanese air attacks on an Australian Base Force that I have retiring from Katherine. First there were some Zeros sweeps at different altitudes. These sweeps caught a couple of RAF Buffalos flying LR CAP in the region. Then I got lucky and a squadron of Nells flew in unaccompanied by escorts. A half dozen RAF Buffalos took the opportunity to jump on the Japanese bombers and shot down six of them, however, some bombers still got through to hit the Base Force. Then more Zeros swept in and cleared the rest of the Buffalos away.

But the Big Hammer fell in Java where the KB showed up to blast the Air Fields at Bandoeng, shooting down a number of Dutch P-40s on the way in. Then Japanese Army bombers hit the airfields at Batavia and the Japanese escorts shot down more Dutch P-40s there. The runways at both bases were effectively closed, so afterwards I just Withdrew the Dutch planes once again rather than have them blown away by overwhelming odds.

However, thanks to the Game Mechanics, a few Dutch planes actually did fly this turn and hit the airfields at Tjilatjap again, albeit with much less effect than the previous turn. But that was a Last Hurrah for the Dutch for now.

In the meanwhile, despite the Weather Forecast, neither the 4Es in India nor the Chinese bombers in China flew this turn. Some of my Recon Planes did fly and so I could see that Japanese troops appear to still be retiring from Mandalay. And more surprisingly, it seems that Lashio might be empty of enemy troops too. I'm send in yet more Recon to check out the Lashio situation more carefully.

The only Ground Action this turn was the daily Japanese Artillery Bombardment at Bataan. The Allied casualties were even lighter this turn. I'm not sure what is happening, but I'm certainly happy with the result.

However, there will be more action next turn as the first Japanese LCUs moved in to besiege Soerabaja. And in China, Japanese troops showed up at Pingsiang. My opponent appears to almost be mirroring my moves with my Chinese troops and the situation in China is getting uglier with ever turn.

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Post #: 177
Soerabaja Under Attack - 7/31/2010 2:12:38 AM   
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April 4, 1942 -

This turn, the night phase was so quiet that there were even hardly any Coast Watcher reports. Daylight, however, was a different story.

The most important part of the story was at Soerabaja where the action started off with plenty of Japanese Air attacks. First came in Oscars on a Sweep. That was followed by Japanese Army Bombers. Then the Real Attack came as the KB sent in hundreds of planes to hammer the Dutch.

Manila also received multiple Japanese bomber attacks, as did Batavia which got Japanese Naval Air attacks from the Mini-KB which is sitting at Palembang, and then Japanese Army Air attacks. Medan received some light attacks, then Japanese Bombers in China appeared for the first time in a while to attack a Chinese Infantry Corps that happened to wander into clear ground.

But for a change the Japanese didn't have a monopoly on Air Attacks. The 4Es at Dacca finally flew and attacked the Air Fields at Mandalay. First off a Hurricane squadron swept in and fought with Zeros and Oscars, with roughly equal losses on both sides. Then the Liberator and B-17 squadrons flew in and blasted past the Japanese CAP. The Heavy bombers found their target and caused a bit of damage to the Air Base, Runways, Air Supply, and even a couple of Zeros on the ground.

Then the Chinese bombers from Changsha flew to hit Japanese troops nearby. But Oscars and Nates were on CAP so the Chinese had a tough time of it. Never-the-less they did get through to hit the Japanese troops.

But there are too many Japanese units on the move in China, and too few Chinese bombers, so the outlook is getting rather grim in that region. Two big Japanese Infantry Divisions captured the dot base of Pingsiang this turn, and more Japanese units are on the move everywhere along the Front. My attempts to interfere with the Japanese advance in China are likely to end up being too little and too late. I may end up having to move half of the Chinese up to Soviet territory.

The Japanese forces at Bataan fired off another Artillery Bombardment this turn. Once again the damage was slight, but my opponent has already informed me that he is shipping in more Ground Troops to turn the balance into his favor.

And at Soerabaja the Japanese amazingly assembled a sizable force in a very short time and staged an immediate Deliberate attack on the base. There were 4 Infantry Regiments, 2 Engineering Regiments, and 4 Artillery Regiments in the Japanese column. The attack achieved a 2:1 result and reduced the Fortifications from 4 to 3. So it appears that Soerabaja won't last very long. At the same time more Japanese troops are moving towards the other end of the island. Dutch rule on Java may well end before the end of April.

Finally, my opponent brought in fresh troops to Dili and they eliminated the Dutch Zombies. However, more Zombies are on the way, so stay tuned for “Return of the Zombies of Timor”.

However, that “return” may well take a while in Real Time because my opponent is taking his family off for a two week Summer vacation, and while he will have his PC with him, he won't be using it regularly.

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Post #: 178
Bataan & Soerabaja Under Attack - 8/2/2010 2:30:33 PM   
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April 5, 1942 -

This was yet another very quiet night, with hardly any Coast Watcher reports, let alone any action.

Daylight brought increased Japanese Recon flights over Katherine and Daly Waters. Katherine is empty and damaged – the Japanese can take it any time they like. Daly Waters had CAP and troops, although that is only temporary. Once I get my slower units out of the region I will pull back from Daly Waters too. It is too hard to supply and support.

Japanese bombers hit Bataan repeatedly, and also Soerabaja, Batavia, Medan, Merak, and some Chinese troops in the field in China. Then the KB came in to hit Soerabaja again. That is definitely overkill, but I won't complain – I am glad to see the KB being overused in the DEI because this means that I don't have to fear Naval Raids elsewhere.

I didn't send out any Allied bombing attacks this turn, only Recon flights. My Recon in India confirmed that my opponent did leave a couple of units in Lashio, although the Combat Division has left and appears to be back in Mandalay. Mandalay also contains more Japanese fighters, although no bombers. That's okay, I don't intend to attempt to bomb Mandalay at this time, instead I have my 4Es flying higher altitude Recon over Rangoon, just in case there are any opportunities there.

I am also implementing an idea that came to me a while ago – I am replacing the remaining A81s in the AVG squadrons with P-40Es, and using the A-81s to rebuild Chinese Fighter squadrons. I hope to surprise my opponent in China with the A-81s, and maybe confuse him too. Sure, the P-40Es lose altitude capability, but I have plenty of Hurricanes in India to provide that. Essentially, what I want to do at this time is to cover all of my railroad bases in the Indo-Burmese border region with fighters to prevent Paratroop drops and nuisance Japanese bomber raids. P-40Es are quite useful for that.

Japanese troops came back with a Deliberate Attack this time at Bataan after multiple days of Artillery Bombardments. The attack gave the Japanese a 2:1 advantage and reduced the Fortifications down to Level 1, but the Japanese took twice as many casualties as the Allies, including a lot of destroyed squads and equipment.

The Japanese also did another Deliberate Attack at Soerabaja. This time there were 5 Infantry Regiments, 2 Engineering Regiments and 4 Artillery Regiments in the attack. The Japanese achieved a 1:2 result but were still able to lower the Fortifications to Level 2. Once again, my opponent has not attempted to cut off the Retreat path of my units. He has plenty of Armored units in Java, so I don't understand why he doesn't. But I'll happily make use of his decision to continue to drag out the Defense of Java.

BTW – a second Dutch Zombie Unit moved into Dili this turn. This time there are a few Zombie Troops in the unit, so my opponent will once again have to deal with a nuisance. And to start to help out other isolated LCUs I have started to send out the occasional Transport Submarine with supplies.

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Post #: 179
Japanese Expansion in Northern Australia - 8/3/2010 4:18:37 AM   
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April 6, 1942 -

The night phase looked as if it would turn out to be a write-off again this turn when a Dutch sub caught a Japanese xAK just off of Makassar. Sub KXII put two torpedoes into the Japanese transport and then got away from the Escorts. But now, with its torpedo tubes almost empty, and Soerabaja teetering on the verge of capture by the Japanese, KXII has a long trip to Colombo ahead of it for replenishment.

Daylight brought scores of Japanese bombers hitting Bataan. Merak and Medan received fewer air attacks. And various Chinese LCUs in the Field in China were hit by Japanese bombers. More interesting, Japanese Recon planes flew over Tennant Creek in Northern Australia.

The Ground Phase started out with a Japanese attack in Central China. A Japanese Mixed Infantry Brigade and a Japanese Armored Regiment attacked a Japanese Corps in rough ground a couple of hexes from Changsha. The Chinese are no longer the pushovers that they once were, and the Japanese attack was rewarded with a 1:2 result and 5 times the Japanese casualties as Chinese casualties.

As I expected, the Allied Defenders at Bataan received an Artillery Bombardment this turn. Surprisingly, the Allied Defenders at Soerabaja also received an Artillery Bombardment. Both attacks resulted in light casualties for the Defenders.

On the other hand, in Dili the Japanese forces got rid of the Dutch Zombies with a strong Deliberate attack. So now Timor is clear of Dutch stragglers.

My opponent was also busy in Northern Australia. First, the Yokusoku 4th SNLF unit captured the empty dot base of Fenton, just south of Darwin. Then the Paratroops of the 1st Raider Regiment captured Broome against no opposition.

(in reply to ADB123)
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