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Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwain(A) No DSwain Pls

 
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Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwain(A)... - 3/7/2010 5:24:15 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
At long last I am starting my first AE PBEM. I've played WitP and AE for about a year and the time has come for a real opponent. This matchup pits Texas (me) vs. the UK (DSwain) and I'm very much looking forward to it.

Before jumping into the meat of the AAR, I want to acknowledge the debt I owe to Mike Solli, Cuttlefish, PzB, Castor Troy and jrcar. I've learned a lot from following their AARs and hopefully that knowledge will prevent me from making a total hash of this PBEM.

For years I have played the excellent tactical sim Combat Mission and became used to MTETT style analysis doing so (Mission/Terrain/Enemy/Troops/Time). As a result I will explain my planning using the discussion format you can find in jrcar's excellent AAR. That said, he is a professional intelligence officer, I am just a history geek who almost went to West Point, so I'm sure my efforts will pale in comparison. So, off we go to war. BANZAI!

Ground Rules

Scenario 1
Turn cycle: 1 day

Settings:
FoW: ON
Advanced Weather: ON
Allied Damage Control: ON
PDU: ON
Historical 1st Turn: OFF
Dec. 7th Surprise: ON
Realistic R&D: ON
No unit withdrawals: OFF
Reinforcements: Historical

House rules:

- Only one Port attack by Japan on Turn 1
- Only existing Allied TFs may be given orders on Turn 1
- No strat bombing in China by Japan
- No strat bombing in former Allied territories until 1/1/43
- Must pay PPs to cross borders (i.e. for Kwantung Army to enter China, Indian Army restricted units to enter Burma, etc.)


Situation

We have been tasked with sweeping the colonialist devils from the Pacific in order to bring the eight corners of the world under a single roof. While we are confident in our general wargaming mojo, having played numerous games since middle school in the 80s, Cribtop HQ is very aware that we lack experience in AE PBEMs, and that playing Japan ups the ante on this issue. I considered playing as Allies, but the Japanese strategic position is of greater interest to me, and if I'm going to put in several years at something, I might as well play the side I really prefer.

Thus, we plan to pursue a relatively conservative approach, taking the normal Phase I objectives with only limited plans for Phase II. The ultimate goal is to establish a defensible perimeter and to pay special attention to the possibility of an Allied thrust from NW Australia aimed at the eastern DEI (more on this later).

Enemy/Friendly

We have little intel on DSwain's playing style, but assume he will be a competent foe. Since he is from the UK, we will assume he will not ignore the C/B/I theater. I will not bore you with an assessment of the starting forces and positions as this is common knowledge on the board, other than to point out that my brain works in a top down manner and I would have strongly preferred to be able to set up the at start forces in a slightly different configuration. I have some concerns that the need to move quickly will conflict with these deficiencies in setup and must guard against both moving too slowly and getting invasions mauled by Allied SCTFs. Careful attention to escorts and covering forces is the only remedy to this problem and I anticipate escorts and surface fleet assets to be the limiting factors in the initial invasions.

Strategic Endstate

The desired endstate is hakko ichiu. Cribtop HQ has put a lot of thought into achieving the most stable and defensible perimeter for our new empire, drawing up a perimeter study listing anticipated major bases and outpost bases, with particular attention to deployment of naval assets and Air HQs. Study of numerous AARs shows that many Allied players are choosing to begin their counterattacks using the Darwin/Timor axis in the eastern DEI. While there is no guarantee that this is the route DSwain will choose, defense of the eastern DEI will figure prominently in our war plans.

Execution

Cribtop HQ has settled on a three prong approach to address the threat to the DEI. This plan in turn, when combined with the desire for a conservative approach, helps to set the broad strategic initiatives to be pursued. DEI defense will center on the following principles:
1) Seizure of Darwin and NW Australia. NW Australia will be considered a part of the DEI for operational planning and will be captured by elements of 16th Army and Southern Army. NW Australia will not become a Japanese PoW camp, however. After conquest, defense of NW Oz will be considered a delaying action rather than a decisive battle.
2) Integrated defense of the Timor area. Kendari will be the major base, with large buildups at Ambon and Lomblen and numerous other bases held as outposts. These three main bases have been selected because, when command or Air HQs are present there, numerous surrounding airfields will be "torpedo enabled" to allow LBA to contest Allied moves.
3) Advances into SOPAC & SWPAC theaters. Cribtop HQ sees numerous benefits to moving in SOPAC and SWPAC, with a lesser effort in CENPAC. Historically, the Allied High Command chose not to move in the DEI in part due to concern about the presence of Japanese forces on the Allied flank in NG and the Solomons. We believe seizure of PM, the Solomons, Tabiteuea and the New Hebrides is well within Japanese capabilities and will serve to threaten Allied convoys to Oz. Keeping the Allies focused here will prevent moves in the DEI while at the same time creating greater likelihood of a carrier duel with favorable conditions in the summer of '42. We are under no illusions that these actions will force DSwain to dance to our tune, but we believe it is likely we can keep the ball in this theater, and doing so does not require forces necessary for the defense of the DEI or Burma. Finally, if DSwain can be induced to begin his counterattack in the New Hebrides, this axis will force him to go "the long way" to the PI and Japan, thus creating delay, the greatest ally of Japan after the expansion stage.

Forces

The following forces will be detailed to the expansion of our empire in what is probably a pretty standard opening. The focus will be on Malaya and Luzon. SE Fleet will need some augmentation of force to quickly secure a perimeter running PM/Noumea/New Hebrides.

- 14th Army will seize Luzon, with 48 Div and 65 Bde invading in the north while 16 Div hits the southern peninsula. In addition, 21st Div will be loaded at Shanghai and committed to Luzon until we have pushed the Americans into a seige at Clark, Manila or Bataan. I agree with the analysis that in AE Clark/Bataan is the allies' best bet, but we'll see how DSwain plays it. 21st Div will be released asap to assist in Malaya.

- 16th Army, with elements of 14th Army beginning at Babeldoab, will descend on Mindanao and the eastern DEI. Ternate, Ambon, Manado and Davao will be early targets. We will work to get one of the Air HQs from Formosa down into this area to allow Netties to help sweep Allied naval forces from the seas. 16th Army will later be reinforced to seize NW Australia as per the war plan.

- 15th Army will move on Burma. Initial moves will be to seize the Burmese side of the long peninsula up to Tavoy. We will close up with the enemy at Moulmein after arrival of 33rd Div from Japan. Burma front will be substantially reinforced after conquest as we are well aware of the Allied ability to counterattack from India. Port Blair will be taken by air assault by 1st Raiding Regt as soon as practicable. This will allow domination of the Bay of Bengal by IJN air assets and hopefully will make it more difficult for Singapore based Allied planes to escape to India.

- 25th Army. We considered a Mersing invasion but in the end abandoned it for two reasons: 1) it does not fit with the war plan's low risk profile, especially due to initial lack of surface forces in the region; and 2) we must assume that DSwain is smart enough to position at least both Aussie brigades here asap. Instead, we will focus on pushing forces ashore at Pattani, Singora and Khota Baru. The main landings will be at Pattani as the road network to the western side of the Malay peninsula is better here (same number of hexes to be traversed as from Singora, but only one hex of trail to be crossed). 25th Army will supply forces to capture Palembang and Java once Singers is secured.

- Southern Army. Assets in Indochina will secure Miri, Brunei, Kuching and Sinkawang. Netties will move to Sinkawang asap. Goal is to isolate Singers and Palembang by having air power to dominate the approaches to these ports from both the Malacca Straits and the open sea between Sinkawang and Singapore.

- SE Fleet. The Guam invasion will be re-directed to Rabaul. 4th Div will be committed to this region to take PM. Shanghai SNLF will be bought out of China and used first to seize Guam and later as a component of moves into the Solomons, New Hebrides and New Caledonia. These latter two island groups will be developed to threaten Allied convoys in accordance with the overall war plan, but they will not be held in strength except for Luganville. It is here we hope to tempt the Allies into a CV duel later in '42. The initial invasions loaded up at Babeldoab will descend upon Aitape, Manus, Lae and Hollandia. These targets were chosen primarily due to airfield size.

- Marshalls/Gilberts. Wake, Makin, Tarawa, Nauru, Ocean and TB will be seized. TB will be built up as the main base in the Gilberts AO. Baker and Canton will be taken as well as outposts if possible. I like to take Canton due to the pre war fuel stockpiled at that base. Denying this fuel to the Allies hinders them a bit.

- China. In general, we will seek to clean up while seizing the northern plains, the coastal cities and the first row of bases in the south. There is a lot of work to do in the early weeks of the war to streamline garrisons and free up troops for offensive ops. Ichang will probably be abandoned as I have seen it retaken in several AARs, trashing the quality troops there.

- 5th Fleet. We will defend the Kuriles through positioning of Home Island air search and nav attack assets at Bihoru. Ground troops will be deployed to defend several islands. Picket vessels, both sub and surface, will be deployed to detect incoming allied raids.

Fleet dispositions.

KB - Cribtop doctrine will keep KB together unless we are fortunate enough to sink one or more US CVs in the early going (which we believe to be unlikely barring a lucky sub attack). After the initial PH raid, KB will cover the Wake invasion and then retire to Truk. KB will then adopt a two TF look with CarDiv 1 (we will refer to Cribtop fleet divisions rather than historical divisions) consisting of Shokaku, Zuikaku and Hiryu with CarDiv 2 made up of Akagi, Kaga and Soryu. The Kongo BCs will generally remain with KB, along with sufficient CAs. Doctrine will allow for detaching of the Kongos for bombardment missions but this will be done sparingly. KB is unlikely to spend a second day at PH, but we will evaluate the initial strikes before making this decision.

KBL - For whatever reason, my shorthand for Mini-KB is KBL. Zuiho and Hosho will move immediately to rendevous with Ryujo at the commencement of hostilities. KBL will generally assist with capture of the eastern DEI.

Combined Fleet - Most of the IJN BBs will sail for the DEI to support operations, probably divided into two BB TFs with support of CAs. Several BBs will probably be temporarily detached to SE Fleet to assist with the PM invasion.

CruDivs - We should end up with at least two independent CruDivs, probably Cribtop CruDivs 5 (Aoba, Kinugasa, Furutaka) and 6 (Ashigara, Kumano, Kako). They will support operations in the SE Fleet and CENPAC. Several of these vessels will have to be released from other Areas of Operation (AOs).

Subs - The initial PH subs will hang around for a few days in patrol zones near Hawaii in the hopes of catching US fleet units and then several subs will move to the hunting grounds off the West Coast. I have a more detailed sub ops plan, but this post is long enough already.

Convoys - We will follow a plan similar to that detailed by Mike Solli in his excellent AAR. Conversion of small AKLs to PBs has begun. Lima xAKs will be converted to AKEs and positioned initially at Babeldoab and Rabaul. Std-C class will be stashed or used in safe waters only until they are converted to TKs in June. We will focus initially on moving resources from Manchukuo/Korea to the HI. Initial plans are for port engineer units to move to Miri and Palembang to assist with loading the convoys.

Industry - Minimal changes are made at first. Shinano will be halted. The Zero factory is expanded, Val production is tweaked up from 12 to 24, Kate production is restarted. Other changes may be made but will generally wait until we have more detailed Tracker/Staff analysis and for the conquest of the DEI.

We will send the turn to our opponent this evening and hope for the best. Comments welcome.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/21/2010 6:44:56 AM >


_____________________________

Post #: 1
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/7/2010 9:32:03 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Here is (a very inexpertly drawn) map of the war plan's broad objectives. The Baker/Canton ops are labeled as Phase II targets, but more accurately should be conceived as outposts to be taken after the minimal Phase I objectives in the Gilberts & Wake are achieved. Perth is an option if things are going very well, but this offensive may never come to pass.






Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/7/2010 9:34:39 PM >

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 2
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/8/2010 8:57:32 AM   
d0mbo

 

Posts: 577
Joined: 8/21/2009
From: Holland
Status: offline
Informative read, nicely written, keep it up!


(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 3
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/9/2010 7:34:05 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Thanks! The first turn is in the books. Working on turn 2 now and will post a write up once it's off to my opponent.

A few quick hits before I post the real 12/7/41 entry:

Bases invaded: Laoag (sp?) and Aparri in Luzon. Davao in Mindanao. Khota Baru in Malaya. Numerous other invasions on the move.

KB: Headed toward Wake to cover that invasion. I have enhanced the Wake assault to two units to ensure success.

PH Strike results: We hit the airfield with the Vals, believing that losing planes for the privilege of bouncing 250kg bombs off of BBs is pointless.

Jap losses: 1 Zero, 7 Kate, 11 Val (lots of damaged/write offs though) per the reports. I suspect losses were a bit heavier if I check the squadrons due to write offs and crash landings.

US Airfield losses: 33 planes destroyed on ground, 7 damaged on ground, airfield trashed with 100 reported hits. The idea of the Val attack was to hit the Allies where it will hurt, given the lower rate of airframe replacements in AE. Seemed to work well with numerous B17, Bolo, PBY and P40B reported destroyed/damaged on the ground.

Confirmed USN losses: BBs W.Va. and Penn and DDs Cassin and Cummings confirmed sunk (confirmed meaning they showed up as sunk at the end of the replay with the "glug, glug" sound). 1 CA and 1 CL badly damaged.

Reported USN sinkings: Numbers in parens are bomb/torp hits from the replay. BBs W.Va (2/4), Penn. (4/3), CA (3/3), and OK (4/3) listed as sunk. BBs Maryland (5/3), Tenn (0/4) and Arizona (2/5) hammered as well. Only Nevada (1/3) got off lightly enough that I feel safe confirming she's afloat. All others are in danger. Some hits are probably FoW, but I think we hit them harder than average. All seemed legit except for a few of the torp hits on Maryland, which didn't have any secondary messages (i.e. no penetration, listing, explosion, fire messages after the torp hit message).

Humor: PT 23 had a very bad day, being obliterated by a torp. Must have hurled herself in front of a BB in a suicidal attempt to save the big ship.

Clark attacks: Swept with one Daitai and 4 Chutai of Zeros. Knocked the cap completely out of the skies with minimal Japanese losses (which was good because some Lillys and Sallys straggled in unescorted after the initial strikes). Bombing raids in AM & PM seemed effective.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/9/2010 7:37:16 AM >

(in reply to d0mbo)
Post #: 4
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/10/2010 6:53:59 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
12/7/41

Here is the first full day AAR. The format will analyze major events by region. I will perform a strategic analysis as needed, but will shoot for at least the 15th of each month beginning Jan. 15, 1942. In addition, I will review the state of the Japanese ecomony on the first of each month.

Pearl Harbor

The strike is detailed in the quickie post above. There is no new intelligence regarding enemy ships (although a piece of PT 23 was rumored to land near an IJN sub 120 miles away). However, review of the estimate of aircraft lost showed substantial enemy aircraft losses, with 20+ P40B, 20+ P40E and 20+ PBY all listed as destroyed, most on the ground. Even assuming FoW, it seems likely that the gambit of using the Vals against the airfield at PH was successful. IJN subs are mostly remaining in position for a few days in the hopes of picking off ships entering or leaving PH, but we hold out little hope as DSwain will probably anticipate this and is not likely to offer us any gifts. We will attempt to correct our failed mini sub attacks at PH (I issued orders incorrectly on 12/7 - I'm sure the crews appreciate being sent into a harbor with thousands of very pissed off USN personnel on full alert). KB is moving toward Wake as mentioned previously.

Marshalls/Gilberts

An SCTF with 2CL and 2DD has reached Jaluit to escort the Makin invasion to Makin. We considered moving this invasion to Tarawa, but have decided to hit Makin, lift the troops and move them to take Tarawa. Additional ships are inbound to Jaluit from Kwaj to embark the TB invasion. The enhanced Wake invasion will loiter near Bikini Atoll while KB approaches. Subs and search aircraft are alert for the possibility of Allied SCTFs coming up from Canton/Suva.

SE Fleet

The Guam invasion has been redirected to Rabaul. The 4 CAs of the original Rabaul Cover Force (Cribtop CruDiv 5) are moving ahead to allow them to escort planned invasions of Kavieng, Tulagi, Munda Pt and Shortlands. These are mostly small forces, but they will be followed up with BFs as these are the bases we intend to develop in the Solomons (although Lunga will probably be added to this list). General intention is to move troops to SE Fleet AO to allow for conquest and defense of NG, New Britain, the Solomons, New Hebrides and New Caledonia. Speed is important as Allied defenses are currently pitiful. This must be counterbalanced against the lack of troops and the danger of USN and ANZAC SCTFs. Invasions of Hollandia, Aitape, Manus and Madang have left Babelthingy. Fortunately, the land mass of NG helps to shield these TFs from the Allied navies for now, but CruDiv 5 will be busy. An SCTF centered on BBs Mutsu and Yamashiro is leaving Tokyo Bay for Truk to provide additional cover forces. Cribtop HQ is very paranoid regarding Allied SCTFs and estimates that SE Fleet AO is one of three areas most likely to receive the attention of DSwain's fleet.

PI

As mentioned previously, the sweeps and airfield attacks at Clark were deemed very successful. To keep our foe guessing, and because recon reveals an anchor symbol in Manila, we will sweep and escort a substantial port attack against Manila on the 8th. Landings at Aparri and Laoag were successful and are being covered by significant IJN surface assets, including 2 CA at Laoag. Enemy PT and sub attacks are expected on the 8th off the beachheads. 65th Bde and the strongest elements of 48th Div are loading at Takao and Pescadores. We received a report that Hong Kong's harbor was empty and a separate report that ships are headed East. Fearing a PT or DD raid, all surface combat assets (paltry except for a few TBs and PBs) are put into SCTFs at these ports just in case. Local IJN air assets are put on Nav attack/Port attack (Manila). The Legaspi invasion at Omami will be directed to Altimonan and is awaiting loading of the last regt of 16th Div and arrival of a powerful TF heading there from the Home Islands consisting of 4 BBs and escorts. These BBs will move down to Babelthingy (with AKEs following in their wakes) to support operations in the eastern DEI.

In the south, landings at Davao, covered by Ryujo, are successful and the town will fall on the 8th. Either Davao or Ambon will host an IJN air HQ asap to allow Netties to help deal with Allied warships.

Borneo

We used a majic move convoy to invade Miri, which should fall this turn. However, Cribtop HQ believes the coast of Borneo is another of the likely Allied SCTF hunting grounds. Because we are unsatisfied with our cover force of 1CA and 4DD, most of the invasion TF will retire on Cam Ranh Bay. A sacrificial TB and 2 xAKs are left to unload supplies. It is hoped they do not become shark bait, but better to lose 3 ships than 20. All Netties in Indochina continue to comb the seas for Allied warships.

Malaya

Landings at Khota Baru are ashore and Force Z is nowhere to be seen. Dec. 7th saw an airfield attack by IJAAF bombers here that was probably a mistake. We were paranoid that DSwain would move the dreaded stringbags here to prey on the Jap. invasion forces (a move I tried with success vs. the AI once). We pounded the airfield a bit too effectively, and our engineers are irritated that they will have to fix damage from our own bombs. Most of the Singora landings (other than a BF to support air ops) were re-directed to Pattani. As expected, these TFs have some unloading to do, but we believe this will be time well spent as the land move from Pattani inland has better roads. The amount of unloading on Dec. 8 will tell the tale here. Strong SCTFs cover both Khota Baru and Pattani in case Force Z puts in a late appearance, but Cribtop HQ believes it will most likely withdraw to Java or head toward the coast of Borneo. The Makassar Strait is another possibility but we believe the USN will gather here leaving the waters off Borneo to the Brits and Dutch.

Burma

Not much to report yet. 15th Army is moving by rail to Bangkok along with the Guards and 1st Tank. 15th will move on Tavoy first while the 25th Army assets will wait to rail down the peninsula to Alor Star once it falls.

China

A holy mess. We are optimizing garrions (a slow process). The troops in Ichang began to move out, and a good thing as recon indicates Chinese forces moving to both invest and cut off the town. A minor op out of Hankow will link up with the retreating Japanese. This manly retreat by the Ever Victorious Army will probably not be mentioned by Tokyo Rose in tonight's broadcasts. Intentions are to gather forces for offensives in the North first. Transports are moving to Shanghai to pick up 21st ID and the Shanghai SNLF (bought out to take Guam on the way to the SE Fleet AO). The Tojos were also bought out and will be used in the PI.

Home Islands

The new supply rules had me playing with the supply draw buttons for an hour. Hopefully we will have some supply in our medium to small bases on the 8th as it was drained on the 7th. Most merchies are heading to Pt. Arthur, Osaka or Tokyo to be formed into convoys.

Analysis

Overall a good start. There is much to be done and much that I still consider out of position, but we will push hard in Luzon and Malaya. SW Borneo will be attacked once surface assets are freed up from the Malaya landings. A move on Ambon, Kendari, Ternate and Manado is high on my list. Ultimate aim of these ops will be early capture of Timor to close the sea lanes and begin to create conditions necessary to hit Darwin.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/10/2010 7:02:21 AM >

(in reply to Cribtop)
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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/12/2010 3:18:12 PM   
topeverest

 

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Intersting choices to expand the empire. Seems pretty standard or at least a minor flavor of it. Your phase II targets of Perth and Funafuti / etc. are interesting. Of course there is no perfect Jap strategy, but let me offer some thoughts for your consideration.

Perth - The incremental committment of forces in considerable assuming you suffer the typical strong land counterattack at Darwin. Where will you draw the incremental divisions and how will you manage the withdrawal to minimize the loss at the end.

Pacific Islands - My experience has been that initiative is the key 'undisclosed' element of the game. The biggest part of that is utilizing the IJN and pushing. Considering your AUstralia heavy strategy, why would you not attempt to cut the entire link to Australia and force the Allies to do long haul tankers and transports with oilers. On its face, it will have synergistic effects in Australia. My calculations suggest you could effect an outright victory if you cut the link and then go for the valuable SW Australia assets. In any event, that is something to think about.

Aelution protection for possible northen approach. Considering your Australia heavy approach, I reccomend expending forces and taking as much of the Aelutions as feasible, even if you dont want to go for Dutch Harbor. You might even land behind the base and choke it out. This provides critical warning should the allies intend on the northern approach and confuses the allies as to your intensions for a time.

Enjoy, and of course... BANZAI!

_____________________________

Andy M

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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/13/2010 5:08:01 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Topeverest - Those are very good thoughts. At a minimum, I agree regarding the NORPAC defense of the Kuriles. Regarding that area, we are already making the following deployments. 1) Several RO subs as near shore pickets; 2) 2 I-boats as recon in the Aleutians (particularly Adak, the key Allied base IMHO); 3) Home Island Netties and search aircraft are deploying to Bihoro on Hokkaido to watch the approaches and be ready to respond; 4) LCUs will reinforce several key bases in the Kuriles. Your comments re SW Australia and cutting the supply line are well taken. Basically, my plan is to position to be able to do those things, then decide if it is really feasible. Even if not, we hope to force DSwain to attack via a longer axis than Darwin/Timor.

And now, on with the AAR:

Dec. 8, 1941

On the whole a quiet turn. This is because our first turn invasions have gone in mostly unopposed and DSwain has not committed surface assets to stop us.

Malaya

We are continuing to unload at Khota Baru (almost finished) and Pattani (estimate another two days, which is very good considering how much we are putting in here). No sign of any Allied SCTF. Recon indicates Alor Star is being abandoned and most Allied LCUs have movement indicators heading toward the south. Heavy JNAAF raids on Khota Baru and a deliberate attack almost take the place outright. 700 British casualties to less than 100 Japanese. Khota Baru should fall tomorrow.

Burma

Probing air raids on Tavoy produce a surprise - 6 AVG fighters on CAP! A few Sonias are lost but their Nate escorts do well. AVG presumably is flying LRCAP out of Moulmein. We shift a large Oscar formation to Bangkok and will sweep tomorrow in hopes of shooting down the flying tigers if they show up again.

PI

The first disappointment of the war! Although we knew they were coming and had 2 PC, 2 PB and 1 DMS in an SCTF defending the hex, a night attack by the HK MTBs sinks three transports that were loading 65 Bde at Takao. Fortunately, troop losses are minimal, but we unintentionally used a Lima class xAK for this Op (damn "add one ship" button!) which is lost. Fortunately, we have many more Limas and 6 are converting to AKEs for deployment to Rabaul, Babeldaob, and Kwaj. Still, as paranoid as I am about Allied attacks on my transports it frustrates me to lose 3 on the second day of the war when I anticipated the enemy's actions. Elsewhere, the news is better. Davao and Laoag fall and the initial invasion force at Laoag is fully unloaded except for supplies. USN PTs try to interfere, but our light cover force of 1 CL and 6 DD sink 3 PTs and drive them off. Nates are operating out of Laoag, Tojos and Babs out of Apparri. We are flying the shipping unit from Takao into Laoag to speed unloading of follow on forces coming from Pescadores and Takao. A port attack on Manila doesn't net many hits on shipping but does destroy P-40B & E at a 10:1 ratio. DSwain is probably already hurting for P-40s in this AO.

Interestingly, Ryujo's Kates attack Allied shipping in Cagayan harbor (nav attack mission gone awry). The combat replay shows her whole air group destroyed but actual losses are only 3 shot down and 1 damaged. This means DSwain will presume Ryujo is de-fanged when she is not. This could be useful tomorow.

Finally, 16th Div is loaded and headed for Altimonan in the company of a powerful SCTF centered on 4 BBs.

DEI & Future Naval deployments

Miri falls with industry intact (149/151 when it starts the game at 150/150). We will finish covering the initial Malay landings and then have the following IJN deployments:

Siam Squadron: 2BC, 4CA, 6DD will support follow on landings in Malaya

China Sea Squadron: 2BB, 3CA, 6DD will support invasions of Kuching & Sinkawang

Sulu Sea Squadron: 2 BB, 3CA, 6DD will support invasions of Jolo, Puerto Princesa, Manado, Ternate, Ambon, Kendari and Koepang after we finish the initial Luzon landings at Laoag and Altimonan.

As stated, the initial AKE is headed toward Babelthingy with 2 Lima AKEs following as soon as they finish conversions. In addition, Zuiho & Hosho are headed to the area to join with Ryujo to form a true KBL.

Pacific

KB heads toward Wake, the Wake invasion loiters near Bikini until KB is in position. Makin falls and we begin re-loading the unit for Ocean, then Nauru, finally Tarawa. The TB invasion force is at Jaluit and will move out once Tarawa is secure. 4th Fleet HQ will move to Kwaj to "torpedo enable" Kwaj and Roi Namur once the Air HQ at Kwaj relocates to TB.

CruDiv 5 is passing the Marianas and will support invasions of NG, Kavieng and Rabaul. The Solomons will be next.

Subs

Saved the best for last. I-122 drops mines 1 hex off Singers (dropping in the port hex itself risked losing a precious minelayer sub to Allied mines). She encounters Allied ships fleeing Singapore and puts a total of 5 torps into two targets, sinking two big xAKs. Better, shortly after these attacks the "mine klaxon" sounded, which I assume means the Allied TF blundered into her minefield after the torp attack. I-122 has killed two ships and at least damaged another in one night!

Hong Kong/China

In China, our troops continue to gather. Chinese forces appear to be moving on Foochow, we are sending a regt to reinforce this base. Our limited air assets pound HK and the troops advancing on Foochow. Netties out of Takao find Allied transports loading at HK and sink at least one with torps.

Ichang is abadoned and probably just in time as recon shows large Chinese forces moving toward the city from all sides.





< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/13/2010 5:15:01 AM >

(in reply to topeverest)
Post #: 7
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/13/2010 9:43:45 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
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Dec. 9, 1941

A quiet turn, but this is good for us. What few highlights are below:

Celebes Sea

We panick at seeing multiple Allied TFs in Davao with our landing forces during the night phase. Must have been subs or FoW, however, as nothing happens. The Ryujo TF runs into a USN DMS in the night, both TFs avoid combat. When the sun rises, our Kates sink the DMS and two xAKs in a small TF SW of Dadjangas. Ryujo is out of torps, so she will return to Babeldaob escorted by 1CA and several DDs. The remaining 2CA & 4DD will hunt in the Celebes Sea (although not for long as we fear those ships from Idaho and Texas may be lurking).

Malaya

Khota Baru falls and the invasion TF finishes unloading all but a few supplies. The transports withdraw and we re-organize our SCTFs as stated in the last post. The Pattani TFs are almost fully unloaded. The second wave invasions for Pattani and Khota Baru (just construction and support here) are passing Saigon and receiving augmentation to their escorts for the final run. Fighters and Recon aircraft relocate to Khota Baru. Just to scare DSwain we will recon Mersing for a few days. Recon shows that DSwain is pulling a full bore Sir Robin to Singapore.

Burma

15th Army troops are unloaded and/or railed up to Bangkok. Despite the pleas of the troops to stay for a few days in the fleshpots, they are chivvied along toward their targets. Vicky Pt should come under the guns not later than the 12th, while the bulk of 15th Army marches on Tavoy. We move 30 Oscars to Bangkok and will sweep Tavoy with Oscars and Nates. Hopefully the AVG will still be on LRCAP. The dive bombers take the day off until the hated Americans are shot down.

Borneo

We are loading new invasions at Cam Ranh Bay to be escorted to Brunei, Kuching and Sinkawang by the newly christened China Sea Squadron. At Samah, further reinforcements for Malaya are loading.

PI

The Altimonan invasion has linked up with the BBs and is on the way. Most of 65th Bde will begin unloading at Laoag tomorrow (assisted by about 1/2 of the shipping eng regt we flew in, with the rest flying in tomorrow from Formosa). The remainder of 65th Bde has unloaded from ships damaged by the MTB attack (nothing serious, miraculously, considering they were torp hits) and is re-loading on new vessels. DDs and PBs have reinforced SCTF guardians there. Much of the infantry of 48th Div departs Pescadores for Laoag. We will sweep and raid the Manila port on the 10th as recon shows numerous enemy ships.

Unfortunately, our Netties mount only a feeble 6 plane attack against the large amount of shipping at HK. However, sub laid mines at Bataan claim the xAP President Madison, a juicy target to hit.

Pacific

Invasions and support vessels approach their targets unmolested (so far). Reinforcement & re-supply TFs for Babeldaob and Truk are loading in Japan. Numerous auxiliary ships (AG, AKE, etc) will join these TFs. 1st Fleet and several BFs will head to Babeldoab while Combined Fleet and more BFs move to Truk.

Intel indicates that 20 PBY have been destroyed in the first few days of the war. Given the limitations on production in AE, this will hamper DSwain's nav search efforts significantly.

China

As our troops move toward their jump off points, our plans for China shape up as follows:

1st Army gathers a powerful force at Chengting. They will move across the rivers south of Chengchow and then attack the city.

Forces in Hankow gather for a thrust toward Nanchang. Because there are lots of Chinese in the area, and because any move on Nanchang from here would have its LoC easily cut off, this move is a feint designed to pin the strong enemy forces in the region and prevent reinforcement of Chengchow.

Forces in the Shanghai region prepare to take Chusien (evacuated by the enemy). Wenchow will be next.

Our overall goal in China is to seize the northern plains first, then clean up the coastal regions. After that we will decide how far we wish to advance in the south before allowing a static front to develop.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/13/2010 10:07:37 PM >

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 8
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/13/2010 10:37:04 PM   
PzB


Posts: 5060
Joined: 10/3/2000
From: No(r)way
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Good luck, should be an interesting read 

Remember to convert your tiny AKL's to ACMs and PBs - got over 50 of these and they will boost your asw / escort ability.
ACMs also maintains minefields you lay, very important since mines doesn't grow in geisha gardens anymore...
A few early AKE conversions is also handy.


_____________________________



"The problem in defense is how far you can go without destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without"
- Dwight D. Eisenhower

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 9
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/13/2010 11:17:04 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
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Thanks, PzB. We have 21 xAKLs converting to PBs and about 20 converting to ACMs.

(in reply to PzB)
Post #: 10
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/14/2010 10:39:57 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Dec. 10, 1941

Subs and PTs

We DC several Allied subs near Takao and Cam Ranh Bay. Our captains claim hits but Cribtop HQ is skeptical. However, the subs are all prevented from making attacks, so the escorts do their jobs. I-175 torpedoes and sinks the ACM Planter off Pearl Harbor. In the most satisfying action of the war to date, CA Chokai and 4DDs, moving to reinforce the covering SCTF for Laoag, run into the Honk Kong MTBs. The carnage is frigtful, with all but two of the 10 or so MTBs obliterated by shell fire. Revenge is oh so sweet!

Marshalls/Gilberts

The Makin invasion loads for Nauru Is. The Wake invasion continues to await KB, which is about 2 days East of Wake.

SE Fleet

At last some action. Invasions of northern NG will go in tomorrow. Meanwhile, CruDiv 5 arrives at Truk and will escort invasions of Kavieng and the Solomons. The Rabaul invasion and the 2BBs cross the Marianas. A Re-supply convoy containing 2 ARs and other goodies leaves Tokyo Bay for Truk, while a convoy containing 4th ID and Combined Fleet HQ leave Osaka for the same destination.

16th Army AO

The cruisers we split off from Ryujo find and sink an Allied xAKL. The rest of KBL is fast approaching Babeldaob. Troops are prepping for Ambon, Kendari and Lautem.

PI

Troops continue to pour into Laoag, aided by the airlifted 6th Shipping Engineers. The first troops move off the beachhead towards targets further south. Transports arrive at Shanghai to take 21st ID and Shanghai SNLF to their destinations. Betties hammer ships in port at Manila, putting at least 6 merchies in sinking condition. The combat report shows that troops were being loaded. We will return tomorrow. Again, our Netties fail to fly from Takao against the ships at HK. We will make some adjustments in the hope of hitting these targets. On a related note, we move some Betties from Saigon to Samah and set them to Nav Attack as ships were spotted in Kwangchowan and the Chinese port to the west. They won't carry torps but it looks like DSwain is trying to hide ships from the PI here and we want to get at them. There is no opposition to our fighters in Luzon. The enemy appears to have gathered ships and planes at Cagayan. KBL and a BB TF will visit this port after the Altimonan invasion (currently about 2-3 days out).

Borneo

We are gathering ships for invasions of Brunei, Kuching & Sinkawang. A small JAAF Coy is being flown into Miri from Cam Ranh Bay.

Malaya

Unloading of the first wave at Pattani is complete, with the second waves for Pattani and Khota Baru on the way. Armor moves out for Alor Star and Taiping. The infantry will follow soon. Imp. Guards and 1st Tank are about half way to Singora on the rails. The only disturbing development on this front is a co-ordinated strike on Khota Baru's airfield by Blenheims out of Kuantan and B-17s () out Singers. The airfield is trashed and this is a concern. We will smash Kuantan airfield tomorrow but for the moment have little answer for the B-17s, which no doubt came from the PI. Nates will LRCAP tomorrow and we will reinforce and build up Singora. Eventually we need a good airfield in range of Singers to try to deal with this threat.

China

Our spoiling attack out of Hangkow is just about ready to move. Troops for the northern army move to Chengting from all points East. So far, other than marching toward the evacuated Ichang and his move toward Foochow, DSwain isn't doing much on this front. Of course, I know from playing as Allies vs the AI that their armies are initially more disorganized than the Japanese!

Other

Tomorrow we will put together our local convoys to pull resources and oil from Sakhalin, Hokkaido & Port Arthur to Honshu. Use of the supply buttons seems to have stabilized things in the HI bases.

On 12/15 we will publish a short analysis of our strategic situation and goals.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/14/2010 10:43:33 PM >

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 11
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/18/2010 4:29:46 AM   
Cribtop


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From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec 11, 1941

Apologies for the delay in posting this week. I have been busy with RL, and decided getting turns back to my opponent took precedence over the AAR. There have been some interesting events, including my first major error.

Subs

Our subs have pulled back from PH. Most of the fleet boats head for patrol zones off the West Coast. Others patrol between PH and San Francisco while still more lurk near the Line Islands. I-175 is DC'd while trying to leave the vicinity of Pearl and suffers enough damage to need a return to port.

Pacific

Co-ordinated invasions of Manus, Hollandia and Aitape occur. All will fall on the 12th. Kavieng and Nauru will be invaded on the 12th, Wake not later than the 14th.

China

Air raids on Hong Kong are socked in by weather. Despite this, our first attack achieves a 2:1 and reduces the forts. After noticing in other AARs that the Japs. have trouble taking HK, we add a regimental unit from Canton to the normal attacking forces. This appears to pay off so far. Elsewhere, our armies slog into position. We should be ready to begin major offensive ops in northern and central China not later than 17th Dec. DSWain's troops that we thought were headed for Foochow instead take a right turn and appear to be headed either to reinforce south China or to try for Amoy. Our regiment that reinforced Foochow about faces to shadow them.

Malaya/Borneo

Our retaliation against Kuantan is fearsome. All IJAAF bombers of 3rd Air Div hit the airfield for 198 runway, 19 airbase and 15 supply hits. That should move the Blenheims back to Singers. The B-17s do not return to Khota Baru. Allied DDs snoop at Miri but the invasion fleet is long gone. The DDs bombard Miri as a consolation prize.

PI

Mavis out of Babeldaob observe a powerful Allied SCTF of at least 11 ships headed northeast out of the Makassar Straight. They are headed for Davao. Our 2CA SCTF is insufficient to stop them. The first instinct is for the invasion force, still unloading supplies, to flee Davao at full speed. However, the peninsulas around the harbor force us to move toward the enemy before turning East. This fact, plus the proximity of the Allies to Davao, makes us fear that we will be caught before we can escape. Worse, Zuiho and Hosho, racing from the Home Islands to join Ryujo, are one day too far East to intervene.

These facts and perceptions cause Cribtop HQ to commit a blunder. Thinking that the enemy will move to Davao at full speed, we choose to disband into port. More on this little disaster tomorrow.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/18/2010 4:31:35 AM >

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Post #: 12
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/18/2010 4:54:24 AM   
Cribtop


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Dec. 12, 1941

A few highlights before we discuss "the incident."

We rest at HK and will deliberate attack tomorrow. Bombers and arty keep the defenders awake. Manus, Hollandia and Aitape fall according to plan. A port raid on Manila sinks and damages several Allied ships stubbornly trying to move in supplies or evac troops or both.

And now...

Thinking themselves clever, our Davao invasion fleet sits in port. Sadly, DSwain sets his ships to a bombardment mission. Houston, Boise, the Dutch CLs, and most of the USN and KNIL DDs hammer us. The slaughter is frightful. 3 older DDs are sunk outright and a fourth is doomed. Several small xAKs are sunk, many more damaged.

Worse, I forgot that the first turn Legaspi invasion, which I diverted to Davao, starts with CS Mizuho & Chitose attached!

The Brass at Criptop HQ is forced to watch a long replay with such cheery references as 8" shell hits CS Chitose, internal explosion, etc, etc, etc . Fortunately, neither ship sinks, but if DSwain returns tomorrow they will. Their ability to return to Babel is not a sure thing.

After the nightmarish replay ends, and after breaking various household items, this mess forces us to consider the reasons for this debacle, and calm returns. Obviously, I was optimistic that DSwain would sail into the hex with retirement allowed and that the next day KBL would be around to cover a retreat. This thinking was fatally flawed. Remember the DDs that bombarded Miri on the 11th? That should have told us that DSwain likes to set for bombardment so he gets something out of the mission if no one is home. This alone invalidates our decision at Davao. We grabbed Davao early, ironically, to provide a good airbase for Netties and a port for emergency repairs when 16th Army moves on the eastern DEI in later planned ops (how's that working out for ya', Cribtop?). In the end, the invasion of Davao occurred too soon to provide proper air or naval cover. We must admit Cribtop HQ was seduced by the "*" on the Legaspi invasion TF. Since 16th Div was going in at Altimonan under our war plan, the Legaspi invasion seemed superfluous. We then cast about for employment of these troops and committed the one mistake we knew was likely, namely an uncovered invasion being mauled by Allied surface assets. We had a doctrine in place mentally to prevent this, but thought "well, the first wave invasions are a bit disorganized but the second wave will be properly covered."

The response is to more firmly and immediately enact our doctrine, which I refer to as "chain invasions." Basically, we assemble sufficien IJN surface assets to deal with likely opposition to any invasion. In this case, we anticipate the USN/KNIL TF described above will roam the eastern DEI while a reinforced RN TF centered on Force Z lurks near Singers/Palembang/Batavia/Kuching. Our 3 squadrons are sufficient, but can't be everywhere. Escorting every invasion individually to its target results in too much delay, and KBL can't be relied upon to drive everything off. Chain invasions will be the answer. For example, four Amphib TFs depart Samah, covered by the Sulu Sea Sqdn (2BB, 3CA, 6DD). These TFs are sheparded to four targets, with each dropping troops and then fleeing before the remainder move on to the next target (Ex. Puerto Princesa, Jolo, Manado, Ternate). We won't do more than 3 or 4 targets for fear that even more enemy forces will swarm to the area, but this is believed to be the best compromise between operational speed and security requirements. We shall see. On with the AAR.

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 13
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/18/2010 5:17:22 AM   
Cribtop


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Dec. 13, 1941

A good day, and morale at Cribtop HQ rises.

Subs

I-17 sinks AVP Pelican in the first sub attack of the war in US Coastal waters. Hopefully the first of many.

PI

Several TFs, assembled based on speed of the survivors, depart Davao. All make for Babeldaob. We hold our breath during the replay, but no Allied ships interfere. The doomed DD Kawakaze was put into a suicidal SCTF and left in the Davao hex in the hope of distracting bombardment forces that never appear. No guarantees, but I think the two CS and the CL will make it. A few hopeless cases are left in port and are bombed by Allied fighters based at Cagayan. Many enemy transports are seen at Cagayan. We will visit here with BBs and try to return the favor. KBL (2CVL, 1CVE, 2CA, 2CL, 8DD) is in position to cover. In the absence of enemy warships, we sink an AK and a TK fleeing the PI.

Our troops are moving off the beach at Laoag in force. In the south, Altimonan is invaded and all troops come ashore safely. Manila is in our crosshairs. DSwain appears to be falling back on either Clark Field or Bataan. Another port attack on Manila claims more Allied victims. We are happy to play this particular game for as long as DSwain is. Our raids are heavily escorted but unopposed and the Netties enjoy the live fire training.

SE Fleet

Kavieng is invaded and should fall tomorrow. Shipping for a chain invasion, sheparded by 2BBs, waits SE of Truk. CruDiv 5 will rendevous with the BBs and then we will "chain invade" Tulagi, Munda Pt. and Shortlands. Follow on forces at Truk will move to Shortlands soon thereafter. Meanwhile, the Rabaul invasion is one day north of Truk and will be sent in soon. 4th ID and a big re-supply convoy are also bound for Truk. This theater, at least, is actually ahead of schedule.

Wake

KB Zeroes sweep Wake and splash several Wildcats for no loss. The planned port attacks by Kates are scrapped due to weather. The Wake TF is 1 hex SW of Wake and we will invade tomorrow. Nauru is invaded and taken by shock attack.

China

Storms hold up all air raids on the enemy's defenses at HK. We are disappointed to only achieve a 1:1 with approximately even casualties (althouth British losses are squads destroyed, ours are disablements). Disruption is low and we may try another Deliberate attack tomorrow. HK's days are numbered.

Malaya

Our troops are off the beaches and closing in on Alor Star.

Burma

15th Army is 1 hex east of Tavoy and will move on the base starting tomorrow. Forgot to mention we took Vicky Point yesterday. Vast reinforcements are headed for the Malaya/Burma theaters (2nd ID, 33rd ID, 1st Raiding regt plus transport planes, etc). They will be covered during the approach by the China Sea Sqdn (2BB, 3CA, 6DD).

We have moved the Royal Thai army a bit. One of the IDs split to garrison the three eastern cities. This freed up 2IDs and the Cav Div to rail to the various bases in the NW, including Rahaeng and Chiang Mai. We hope to confuse DSwain as to the real avenue of approach of 15th Army. It's not much, but what else can you do with the buggers? They are not permitted to leave Thailand without paying PPs, so this is strictly a feint.

Convoys

Our local convoy system is up and humming along nicely (Thanks to Mike Solli for the system set out in his AAR). Pilot training will be fully set up next and should be up by the 15th.



< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/18/2010 5:18:34 AM >

(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 14
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/19/2010 9:30:38 PM   
Cribtop


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From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec. 14, 1941

We are one week into the war. For the most part, so far so good. We have been re-organizing and moving things around but the pace will dramatically accelerate in the next week as shipping is almost in place for the following: 1) Reinforcement of 15th & 25th Armies; 2) Invasions of the West (or north) coast of Borneo (PS - I tend to use real world directions rather than AE directions, thus Kuching is on the West coast of Borneo in my mind); 3) Chain invasions of the east DEI; and 4) chain invasions of the Solomons.

Subs

The USN shoots but no bang near Takao. I-10, near Raoul Is in the Tongas, sinks TK William Sunoco. Sinking TKs is always appreciated.

Marshalls/Gilberts

The Nauru invasion loads up for Ocean Is. Last stop Tarawa. The TB invasion will meet up. We are a little concerned about USN CAs in this area, but have a RO boat screen in place and the Netties/Mavis are combing the oceans. So far, we are clear. Wake is invaded and things don't go well. First, for the second day in a row, KB's Kates refuse to port attack. Second, we must get a bad die roll as despite a 2:1 and taking down the forts to zero, the second of the Nav Gd unit (the original Tarawa invasion) is thoroughly mauled. Literally all of her SNLF and support squads are disabled. The other Nav Gd, 100% prepped, fairs much better. Has this invasion failed despite the reinforcement? Probably not, but Cribtop HQ is concerned. KB and the Netties in Roi Namur will be set to Nav Attack/Ground Attack(Wake). The 2 Kongos and 2 CAs from KB will detach and bombard. The ground units have 8.5 times the supply required and will rest for a day or two then re-evaluate. If necessary, the TB invasion can be diverted. Odd, as most Japanese players take Wake without much trouble if both units we deployed are used. The invasion had all day to unload, too, so I don't think it's that.

SE Fleet AO

CruDiv 5 meets the Madang invasion and they should hit the beaches tomorrow. CruDiv 5 will then join the Solomons chain invasion, loitering under the watchful eye of 2BB, 1CL and numerous DD SE of Truk. The Rabaual invasion reaches Truk and re-fuels. Kavieng has been abandoned and falls without incident.

16th Army

The Davao survivors are about 60% of the way to Babel and look like they will make it. KBL shepherds them home.

14th Army

Vigan and Atimonan fall. Surprised Japanese intelligence officers learn that the latter base was apparently misspelled on our maps as "Altimonan." An inquest is launched to determine how the L escaped, and seppuku for certain officers is likely. Our armies are unloaded and on the move, with still more reinforcements loading at Pescadores and Takao. We have SCTF and ASW TFs watching over both harbors. Unortunately, stormy weather over Manila gives DSwain's doomed ships a respite from our air force. Analysis of extensive aerial recon indicates that the enemy is preparing to hold at Clark with a final redoubt in Bataan.

Malaya

Our armies pour over the northern border into Malaya. Alor Star has been abadoned and will fall in 1-2 days, allowing reinforcements to arrive via rail. All combat elements of 5th, 18th and IG Divisions are ashore and/or in position. DSwain has several units at Taiping and it appears he will make his first stand here. IJNAAF bombers sting these troops daily. The most heartening news occurs in the skies over Khota Baru. 1st Sentai, still in Nates, was moved in and put on 70% CAP. This was a risk, but it was time to start attriting the hated B-17s, who had not been seen since the initial raid. Right on cue the 4E monsters show up, with 25 B-17 attacked by 40 Nate. We are very pleased with the resulting battle. No IJNAAF planes are lost, either on the ground or in the air. However, 14 B-17 are damaged, and their raid only results in 2 Airbase and 15 runway hits. The runway is left with only 10 dmg after the replay. This is a good success. It will take several more such battles to do enough damage to put a stop to these raids, but this is a good start and gives DSwain something to think about. Further, once Georgetown and Taiping fall, we will have more bases than he has bombers.

China

The Hong Kong assault goes pretty well, although we nursed hopes that we would take the base with a good die roll. Still, a 1:1 is achieved, the forts drop to zero, and casualties are heavily in our favor (590+ to 300ish; DSwain loses 59 destroyed squads to only 3 for the Ever Victorious Army). The handwriting is truly on the wall.

Elsewhere, we push off for Chusien and order and attack at Puching. The Chengchow forces are quickly marshalling at Kaifeng. To assist this offensive, we buy out 2 Sentai of Sally and 1 of Lilly from Kwantung Army and they are re-deployed toward the theater.

Industry

Things seem to be doing well, per observation and tracker. We consider increasing Betty production at Nagoya but will hold off for now (any advice on this?). The accelerated Junyo is due in Feb. '42. I need to deal with pilot training & reserve pools but will handle that next turn as if I hurry the turn back to DSwain we have a shot at getting two turns done today.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/19/2010 9:37:11 PM >

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Post #: 15
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/20/2010 6:01:07 AM   
Cribtop


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From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec. 15, 1941

This is the turn re-cap. The promised analysis will occur tomorrow am.

Not much to report on 12/15.

Subs

I-164 obliterates an HDML in the Malacca Strait. Sad really.

Wake

STILL no ground attack from KB or Roi Namur. The beatings will be fierce. Weather was good, and escorts were plentiful. Why we don't bomb the Marines is beyond me. Wake was the "Alamo of the Pacific" and I am from San Antonio, TX. Coincidence? Perhaps my pixeltruppen refuse to bomb the Alamo out of an excess of Texas patriotism? The 2 BB & 2 CA from KB split off and bombard, however, and we get a good shoot. The Marines are plastered with over 198 casualties. We will shock attack on 12/16 and reinforce if we fail.

Malaya

The story today is the furball over Khota Baru. DSwain sweeps, first with AVG & Buffaloes and then with Blenheim fighters. 1st Sentai rises to battle and fights with the spirit of bushido! 1 Nate and 1 Buffalo are reported lost, but 3 HKs from AVG "spin away on fire" which are probable kills or at least op losses. Then the B-17s return. Despite the sweep, there are still 21 Nates in the air. Banzai! Of 24 B-17s, 17 are damaged. We suffer only 11 runway hits and no planes are lost on the ground. 1st Sentai is fast becoming our favorite air unit. Tomorrow, they will be reinforced by 40 Nates on LRCAP from Singora. Also, we have moved the miscellaneous Sonias from Indochina to Singora. They are watching the Malacca Strait on Nav Attack in case DSwain gets lazy with evacuations.

China

Pengpu falls easily. Our armies continue to march on their objectives.

The Day Ahead

Shock attacks are ordered for HK and Wake. Hopes are high for HK, low for Wake. We shall see.


(in reply to Cribtop)
Post #: 16
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/20/2010 4:01:48 PM   
Cribtop


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Dec. 15, 1941 - Strategic Analysis

There is a shuffling of papers as the brass at Cribtop HQ convenes for its first strategic analysis. These meetings will be held on the 15th of each game month (or more often as needed for special ops or critical situations).

Friendly Situation

Despite the error at Davao, things are proceeding mostly according to plan. IJN assets are becoming more organized and the chain invasion doctrine will receive its first test in the Solomons soon. The slightly early fall of HK (see the AAR entry below for Dec. 16, 1941) frees up 38ID, while on the whole our forces in Malaya are in position to begin real offensive ops towards Singapore after only 8 days of war. It is believed that the decision to land mostly at Pattani, with its better road access, was a success. Shipping Eng regts at Pattani and Laoag were worth their weight in gold as they helped to quickly unload huge volumes of men and material into tiny level 1 ports. Air assets need to be rebased to provide coverage of the Sulu & Celebes Seas and to close the western entrance to the Java Sea (the latter requires that we capture Kuching & Sinkawang). Netties are not the vacuum cleaners they were in WitP, but they will be one element of keeping the enemy SCTFs at bay. We need more infantry and base forces in SE Fleet AO yesterday or the pace of ops will falter.

Enemy Situation & Intentions

Neither side has lost significant naval or air assets so far. DSwain is generally withdrawing where sensible in Luzon and abandoned Kavieng in SE Fleet. Will he attempt to reinforce PM? Where is Force Z? Where are the ANZAC cruisers? Finally, where are his carriers?

Analysis of what little intel is available indicates that DSwain prefers to strongly concentrate his naval forces rather than pursue hit and run or raiding tactics with small, semi-suicidal TFs. For example the strong USN/KNIL force, apparently based at Manado or Kendari, includes Houston, Boise, Tromp, Java, Sumatra and at least eight DDs. This is nothing to be trifled with. Criptop HQ believes an augmented Force Z is probably lurking near Batavia. Enemy intentions with these forces appear to be to carry out in force the surface attacks on invasions that many allied players carry out in penny packets.

As predicted, it appears that DSwain is putting a lot of effort into UK forces, in particular the defense of Malaya. At least one sqdn of the AVG is present, as are the PI B-17s. Further, the large concentration of enemy forces at Taiping, far from withdrawing, is being reinforced. This indicates an intention to fight a tough delaying action here, utilizing air assets from Singers, Kuala Lumpur and Malacca (where recon indicates enemy airfields are occupied).

The Pacific & NG so far are very quiet, although some intel indicates that enemy TFs are calling on PM. Is this a retreat or an effort to reinforce? We must assume the latter but believe 4th ID will be up to the task.

We have no intel on enemy carrier forces, but given DSwain's apparent preference for mass, it is quite possible he will await the arrival of Yorktown before his CVs sortie. Frankly, I would pursue a similar policy. KB will be divided into two CVTF, but these elements will always be kept in the same hex. KBL must be cautiously employed as Cribtop HQ believes that enemy CVs will likely first appear in either the DEI or the Solomons/NG region.

We must assume that DSwain will move his initial British reinforcements to Burma, Java, Timor or Malaya. But which? His strong posture in Malaya might argue for deployment there, but in the end we can bring 6 divisions to bear if needed and thus he would be sacrificing these troops to a fight we can reinforce without need of amphib operations. Burma presents some interesting options for him, and troops sent here can be extracted to India if necessary. This option is considered somewhat likely, although there is not much to do in Burma other than delay the IJA. Java presents similar advantages and disadvantages as does Malaya. However, Java requires that we launch relatively dangerous and harder to reinforce amphibious invasions and the enemy may be trying to hold out long enough for the Dutch March reinforcements. Timor is also an option, as this could delay our move into Darwin. The truth is that all of these are possibilities and we have insufficient intel to posit more than a guess as of yet.

Strategic Endstate

The desired endstate varies by theater, but in general Cribtop HQ is determined to maintain a high operational tempo and continue to expand while enemy resistance is weak. This desire must be balanced by force protection needs, as Davao so clearly showed. Thus, conditions necessary for continued advance are: 1) Sufficient SCTF cover, 2) LBA cover by Netties and 3) carrier fleet intervention as appropriate/available.

Forces & Doctrine

As mentioned previously, the intention of creating 4 SCTFs with at least 2BB, 3CA & 6DD each is to have sufficient force to counter the anticipated maximum size/capability of known enemy SCTF assets. Enemy concentrations of Force Z and USN/KNIL cruisers have been discussed above. In addition, the possibility of an ANZAC cruiser force consisting of 2CA & 3CL could be used in SE Fleet AO. In the Gilberts AO, there are sufficient enemy forces available to assemble multiple CAs, with two beginning the game in theater and several more CA & CL at Pearl. The fear of this force has kept KB near Wake and will move her briefly to the Gilberts since there are insufficient IJN surface forces present to deal with the USN if it comes out to play.

Criptop HQ doctrine will utilize the large IJN SCTF (Siam Sqdn, China Sea Sqdn, Sulu Sea Sqdn & SE Fleet) to cover multiple invasion TFs in "chain invasions." This doctrine is perceived as the best compromise between force protection and maintaining operational speed.

Execution

SE Fleet is already escorting the Tulagi, Munda Pt & Shortlands invasions to their targets. Rabaul and then PM will be next. The Rabaul & PM ops will be supported by KB.

Sulu Sea Sqdn will redeploy to Babeldoab to escort reinforcements & an Air HQ to Davao. Netties & Zeros will re-base here in preparation for future ops in 16th Army AO. Sulu Sea Sqdn will then hunt down Manila survivors clustered at Cagayan. KBL is currently upgrading her figthers but will soon be available for this AO as well.

China Sea Sqdn is escorting major reinforcements to Malaya and Burma. She will take them as far as Cam Ranh Bay and then hand off to Siam Sqdn. China Sea Sqdn will then escort a major chain invasion to hit the following bases in order: Puerto Princesa, Jolo, Manado and Ternate.

Siam Sqdn is currently overseeing the unloading of the last Malaya invasion TF, which is bringing in support troops and AA. It will then take the handoff of reinforcements described above and escort them to debarkation point at Bangkok. Siam Sqdn will then escort a chain invasion of: Kudat, Brunei, Kuching & Sinkawang. These latter bases will be dangerous moves. Netties are covering the area already, and Siam Sqdn (2 Kongo class BBs, 4CA & 6DD) is our strongest SCTF. Still, we estimate that a reinforced Force Z is waiting in these waters to spring a trap. This op will have to be planned with care as carrier support is unavailable. If there is to be a big gun battle in 1941, Cribtop HQ predicts that the waters off Kuching or Sinkawang is the most likely flashpoint.

After these ops, Sulu Sea Sqdn will rearm at Babel (the large AKE that starts the war in Tokyo is about 3 days out from Babel now with 40K supplies) and then escort chain invasions of Ambon and Kendari. Timor and Lautem are theoretically part of this chain but we will need to pause for recon. Also, Cribtop HQ is toying with bringing in KB for this stage of the proceedings as KB will have to be around for the later invasions of Java and Darwin anyway.

Thoughts, critiques or comments welcome!





< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/21/2010 12:51:36 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/20/2010 11:15:59 PM   
Cribtop


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Dec. 16, 1941

A very good day for the Empire.

Wake & Gilberts

In the pre-dawn darkness exhausted US & Japanese marines prepare for another bloody clash. The silence is shattered by the thunder of IJN aircraft. At long last both Roi Namur's Nells and KB's Kates deign to bomb the island (2 days on port attack to hit the coastal guns and no launch, they come at last on ground attack orders. Weather appeared to be a factor on the first day, but the failure to launch on the second is a mystery.). A lone F4F sorties, shooting down 1 Nell before being annihilated by 52 Zeros escorting the Kates. As the Wildcat falls to earth the elite carrier aviators wag their wings in salute of such bravery. The bombs fall with devastating effect; Japanese hopes rise while the Americans know the jig is up. By sundown all US forces are prisoners or casualties of war. KB will move south to provide distant cover for invasions of Tarawa & TB (still worried about the location of CA Pensacola), then move into the SE Fleet AO.

Elsewhere, Ocean Is. falls. Ships are gathering for the Tarawa and TB invasions, the last of the Phase I expansion in this region. Baker and Canton will be seized soon thereafter in a short Phase II operation, although we will need to recon Canton to be sure it has not been reinforced.

SE Fleet

Madang falls. CruDiv 5 will link up with the BBs and the Solomons invasions, proceeding first to Tulagi via a path that runs East of Ontong Java. We considered sending in the Rabaul invasion first but opt against it because: 1) it is safe in Truk while the other 3 TFs are already at sea, 2) if DSwain is sending the ANZAC cruisers to hunt, they are more likely to go to Rabaul, which is the next logical invasion site, and 3) Delaying Rabaul by a few days means that KB can join the party as distant cover. 4th ID draws ever closer to its date with PM.

16th Army

A major victory of sorts is won when the damaged CS Mizuho and Chitose, together with the damaged CL and most of the transports, make port at Babeldoab. They will be in repair yards at Babel and in the Home Islands for 3 months, but all in all the price of our defeat at Davao is much reduced from what we expected. Good weather and dumb luck kept the temporary flotation repairs from failing, and thus we have not lost two future CVLs. Banzai!

The Sulu Sea Sqdn has completed its escort duties near Luzon and has fully formed up (2BB, 3CA, 6DD). It will return to Babel to support a resumption of ops in 16th Army AO. First, we will escort reinforcements to Davao sufficient to begin the siege at Cagayan. This same convoy will include 23rd Air Flotilla, which will allow deployment of Zeros & Netties to help scare away the Allied SCTF bogeyman. Next, the Sulu Sea Sqdn will perhaps pay a visit to Cagayan harbor, where recon indicates a concentration of Manila escapee transports are sheltering under cover of P-40s. Airfields at both Babel and Davao are expanding.

Luzon

San Fernando and the hex West of Atimonan fall. 21st ID, a tank regt, and various engineers are the last units needing to land at Laoag, and that process begins today. The weather clears enough to allow Netties to raid the port of Manila, but only one ship seems to remain in the harbor (and after this raid it will probably be a permanent fixture). China Sea Sqdn is fully constituted (2BB, 3CA, 6DD). She heads out to escort 33rd ID, 2nd ID, & 1st Raiding Regt to Indochina. Things are starting to get organized and the pace of offensive ops will go up dramatically in the DEI in the next week.

China

Our decision to shock attack at Hong Kong pays off. We get the necessary 3:1 odds by 50 AV and the proud bastion of the British Empire in China joins the Co-prosperity Sphere. Without the shock attack we would not have prevailed. Minesweepers will clear the harbor and 38th Div will prep for its next targets. Tokyo Rose makes her first broadcast of this PBEM.

We chase the Chinese out of Pengpu. Our offensive at Kaifeng is almost ready to move. We will bring approx 2300AV or more to the party. Our spoiling attack continues to slog into position near Ichang. DSwain's Chinese are making some aggressive moves in this region as well, with 3 units moving on Sinyang. A Mixed Bde is more than halfway down the road to reinforce the town, which has 4 forts.

25th Army

Our tanks roll into Alor Star and this base will fall tomorrow, allowing major reinforcements in by rail. We will also move in fighters & AA in case DSwain is planning to try to bomb us while our troops are unpacking. Most of the troops that unloaded at Pattani have reached the hex NE of Taiping. This will be the first major battle of the campaign, as intel shows 21,000 Indian & Brit troops in position.

At Khota, we continue Nate CAP and LRCAP, and we shift an Oscar Sentai into the base from Indochina. These fresh arrivals will hopefully put even more hurt on the enemy's fighters & B-17s if they choose to bomb for a third day. Given the lack of headway and a sketchy weather report, DSwain may not show, but we are ready if he does. As another deterrent, AA has railed into Khota and unpacked. Not that Japanese AA is effective, but it improves the morale of the bombed.

15th Army

This front is quiet but proceeding according to plan. All that remains is for 15th Div to slog into Tavoy through the jungle and for 33rd Div to arrive.

Subs

I-154 reacts into Singers and takes a mine hit that is probably fatal. No other sub attacks by either side today.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/21/2010 6:47:25 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/21/2010 6:57:20 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
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From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec. 17, 1941

There are three kinds of quiet turns: 1) You're just screwing around or don't have the initiative; 2) You're relieved that nothing happened because your ass was hanging out and the enemy didn't bite it; or 3) You are re-orienting for future offensives after significant victories. Type 3) is the best kind of quiet day, and today is one of those turns.

While our fleets and invasion TFs move toward their objectives as described in the last two posts, only a few events are worthy of noting. Alor Star in Malaya falls as expected. AA and base forces are railing in first. This will allow fighter cover when Imp. Gds move in later. The enemy does not darken the skies over Khota Baru - is this air battle won?

In the PI, San Fernando is taken and Mauban is occupied. Our troops continue to move south from Laoag and north from Atimonan.

In China, Kweiteh falls. This opens the rail line SE from Kaifeng to the coast. The division that took Kweiteh divides, its three brigades will each secure a hex along the river running SE from Chengchow. This will protect the flank of 12th Army's advance. A Chinese collaborationist (err, an enlightened Chinese force) will garrison Kweiteh itself. The spoiling attack is in position and will bombard the first turn to confirm what we are up against, which appears to be 1 Chinese corps. Things will really move in China and elsewhere over the next 10 days.

Recon over Rangoon reveals numerous TFs, containing numerous xAPs. Is this where DSwain sent his early war UK/Indian reinforcements (see discussion in 12/15 Strategic Analysis post)? Are these ships loading or unloading? Interesting.

We went through the double clicking hell of moving all experienced pilots in Home Island air units into the General Reserve. These units, set to train, are re-filled with rookies.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/21/2010 5:10:30 PM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/21/2010 2:26:31 PM   
Blackhorse


Posts: 1926
Joined: 8/20/2000
From: Eastern US
Status: offline
quote:

Perhaps my pixeltruppen refuse to bomb the Alamo out of an excess of Texas patriotism?


Nice AAR. I will follow the adventures of your pixeltruppen with interest.

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WitP-AE -- US LCU & AI Stuff

Oddball: Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here? Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
Moriarty: Crap!

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Post #: 20
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/21/2010 3:18:39 PM   
Rondo

 

Posts: 23
Joined: 7/10/2009
Status: online
Keep it up. I like your format and look forward to comparing your results to your your plans. Banzai!

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Post #: 21
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/21/2010 5:08:04 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Thanks Blackhorse & Rondo. DSwain and I cranked a lot of turns so far this weekend (we both had Friday off) and there are more to come!

I have to say some good things about my opponent. He seems a very stand up guy so far - quick with the turns and no gamey moves (but too many clever moves for my taste ). In his e-mail sending the first turn he said: "Good luck on the war... see you in about four years in Tokyo Bay. Bring a pen." Ahh, dry British wit and all.

Dec. 18, 1941

An action packed replay with something to like for both sides. We gain vital intel in the DEI.

Subs

I-155 sinks xAK Ellenga near Palembang. I-3, harrassed twice by escorts in the night phase, lines up a shot on xAP President Taylor in the afternoon but it's a misfire! Looks like she stumbled on a big troop convoy headed from San Diego to San Fran. S-36 misses a DD near Laoag. SS Shark gets a hit but no bang on a troopship ferrying forces to Samah for the upcoming chain invasions. Whew! The escorts claim 4 hits with DCs but only one seems real.

And now, the news of the day! I-153, cruising in the Java Sea near Bandjarmisen (I'm sure my Dutch spelling leaves much to be desired), gets the dreaded Boise in her sights and scores a hit! . Unfortunately, the combat report does not indicate heavy damage so it may have been a minor hit or outright FoW. Still, hopefully we stung her. Most importantly, we know the USN/KNIL SCTF has left the eastern DEI headed for the Singapore area (there were enough Dutch DDs that attacked I-153 without success that we are pretty convinced this is the full Davao TF). This is valuable intel indeed. Analysis in the Malaya AO section below.

4th Fleet

With the fall of Wake, our command is altered in accordance with pre-war planning. 4th Fleet will be moved to Kwaj. As a command HQ, even with a 1 hex range, it will torp enable Roi Namur & Kwaj. This will allow 24th Air Flotilla to redeploy to TB once it is taken. 6th Fleet & Combined Fleet HQs will move to Truk. SE Fleet will move to Rabaul to torp enable numerous bases.

We now have 4CL & 4DD escorting the Tarawa and TB invasions, plus organic escorts in the invasion TFs. We breathe a little easier. KB is one day north and will shadow the rapid fire capture of these undefended islands. KB will then jaunt over to SE Fleet AO as mentioned.

SE Fleet

The Madang Invasion TF hightailed it out of town 2 days ago, leaving 1xAKL and 2 PBs to finish unloading needed supplies. Unfortunately, as this smaller TF leaves for Truk, they are intercepted near Manus by the ANZAC cruisers, plus USN CA Louisville. The inevitable outcome is the loss of our 3 ships, but they were considered expendable and on the whole we feel we kept one step ahead of DSwain in the early, shoestring op to capture four bases in NG. Fortunately, it takes a lot of shells to sink our vessels, so perhaps the enemy will need to re-arm, although we will not count on this. Most importantly, Cribtop HQ can now answer questions regarding the location of the ANZACs. Furthermore, Louisville's presence reduces the likelihood that a USN CA Sqdn with Pensacola and Pearl CAs is prowling the Gilberts. Best of all, our decision to hold the Rabaul attack until KB arrives is vindicated. The ANZACs are out of position to intercept our attack on Tulagi. However, we may hold off on hitting Munda or Shortlands until KB gets in the neighborhood. Frankly, it would be nice to bag some of these ships if we can.

16th Army

Quiet, but reinforcement and re-supply TFs are within a day of Babel. We should be able to get an Air HQ into Davao very soon, which will alter the local balance of forces.

14th Army

Troops unload, troops march on abandoned bases, US forces gather at Clark and Bataan for a last stand. Film at 11. We decide to give the Nettis & Zeros a rest from bombing Manila's port as there is little left afloat and the weather is bad.

China

Numerous DMS appear to clear all mines from HK's harbor. Curious that the "DMS-xx clears 26 mines at Hong Kong!!!" messages require THREE exclamation points. Really? Unfortunately, DMS-20 clears one mine with her keel and now graces the harbor as an artificial reef. We will stick around one more day to make sure we got all the mines, but the little yellow allied mine symbol is gone. 38th Div will be shipped out. The main issue is - use her for Java or hit bases in the Makassar Strait before using her for Java. We will decide soon.

Elsewhere, our Nanchang spoiling attack army had arrived in the first enemy occupied hex. We set all to deliberate attack but then got cautious and set all to bombard to see what we were up against. Unfortunately, two small armored units can't bombard and were left on deliberate attack orders. Fortunately, these overexuberant units alone were sufficient to get a 2:1, force the enemy's 130th Corps to retreat, and thoroughly trashed it with hundreds of squads destroyed! I had heard that officers of the Kwantung Army and China Exp. Force sometimes took matters into their own hands without waiting for orders. Fortunately, this little screw up has a happy ending. We caught the enemy in move op mode, which helped. Other Chinese units in the area appear to be moving defensively, which is welcome news. The timing is perfect as it will draw DSwain's eye right as the 12th Army gets ready to move on Chengchow. We can't move much farther towards Nanchang with the spoiling attack, however, as the enemy is already reconning Hankow and Wuchang. DSwain is probably watching for a chance to attack if we stray too far away.

Malaya/Borneo

Analysis of the Boise intel. What is the enemy doing moving the USN/KNIL TF west through the Java Sea? Falling for our Maskirovka, perhaps? We have moved a small Babs Chutai to Miri and have been aggressively reconning Kuching & Sinkawang. We don't plan to invade until Siam Sqdn is ready, but hope to keep the enemy focused where we aren't. Cribtop HQ thinks it likely that DSwain believes invasion of Kuching is imminent and that he knows the size of Siam Sqdn from aerial recon. He may have decided to commit both Force Z AND the USN/KNIL forces to a big gun fight. This seems most likely as the B-17s & several Hudsons bomb the airfield at Miri today. The B-17s appear to have shifted to Batavia. Interesting.

Elsewhere, the AA and BFs have railed into Alor Star. Fighters & Imp. Gd over the next few days. Then we attack Taiping.

Burma

15th Army machetes its way closer to Tavoy. Otherwise, , except that a second recon to Rangoon shows the enemy TFs have fled and the port now has a big airfield symbol. Maybe we spooked the enemy yesterday. This bug out slightly increases the odds that the TFs were troopships, which in turn slightly favors the "DSwain reinforced Burma" theory from the 12/15 Strat Analysis. PS - While preparing the next turn, I looked at the intel again and it shows no less than 9 xAPs in one convoy. Pretty sure the enemy is either reinforcing or evacuating troops.

Overall a good day with great intel. If only we'd put more fish into Boise.



< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/21/2010 10:31:35 PM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/22/2010 1:45:20 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec. 19, 1941

We planned to post a screenshot, but will have to do it later as we are getting too close to air time for Episode 2 of "The Pacific."

Subs

We sortie an ASW TF from Takao as this is the turn our big reinforcements, watched over by China Sea Sqdn, are clearing the straits. The TF attacks both S-39 and Seadragon. No hits, but the big transports sail past unharmed, so the little SCs did their job. Recall we sent two I-boats to keep tabs of any moves in the NORPAC area. I-160 encounters and guns down xAKL Columbian sailing unescorted near Dutch Harbor. This was probably an unescorted re-supply. Hopefully it will make DSwain paranoid about escorts and stretch his convoys thin. Sealion attacks our last cripple from Davao, an xAK limping home to Babel. Somehow Sealion misses despite the fact the ship can only make 7 knots. Shame on the USN skipper!

Elsewhere there is little action, although our many invasion TFs close in on the Gilberts and Solomons. A few highlights:

- At Babel, 23rd Air Flotilla and other reinforcements for Davao rendezvous. In addition, the re-supply TF containing the big AKE arrives at Babel. Sulu Sea Sqdn is one day north. We are ready to change the game in the Sulu and Celebes seas.

- Naga is undefended and falls to 16th Recon Regt. Legaspi is next.

- Most of 21st Div is ashore at Laoag.

- Guam is invaded by Shanghai SNLF. Is her next target in the New Hebrides?

- We attack and defeat Chinese 88th Corps 1 hex SW of Hangchow. The enemy retreats with 1237 casualties and the way to Chusien is open.

- 12th Army begins its march to envelop and invest Chengchow. This should be the main event in China for a while.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/22/2010 2:52:40 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/27/2010 3:13:21 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
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From: Lone Star Nation
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Dec 20, 1941

Had to travel a few days for work, so no turns since Tuesday. As we resume, the storm begins to break as our attacks are getting organized and co-ordinated in China, the DEI and the SE Fleet AO. Important decisions are made and the next few turns will be very interesting.

Subs

SS Pike is attacked by convoy escorts near Pt. Arthur. Some Allied players fail to send subs into the resource rich Yellow Sea. Unfortunately, DSwain is not one of them.

SS Stingray launches torps at the I-154, still limping home after her crippling encounter with a mine at Singapore. The enemy gets a hit but no bang. With 92 FLT dmg, it's a wonder even the impact of a dud on the ruined hull didn't sink the IJN sub, but she lumbers on at 1 knot. I'd scuttle her, but the office pool at Saigon is up to Yen 50,000 and I've got the over.

4th Fleet & SE Fleet AOs

The invasion of Tarawa goes in tomorrow. KB is in distant cover, and originally planned to stay. However, we mull a few things over: Intel in the Gilberts from numerous subs, Mavis and Nell running overlapping search patterns into the Baker/Canton area pick up nothing. Presence of CA Louisville with the ANZAC squadron lowers the likelihood of a USN cruiser force lurking here. Finally, if the TB force moves full speed they will hit TB on the 22nd, covered by the 4CL & 4DD of the temporary Gilberts Sqdn. Both the Tarawa and TB attacks should unload and take their objectives quickly.

Bottom line, Cribtop HQ considers the risk in the Gilberts low, while the local force of 4CL and 27 Nell provide backstops in case the Americans intervene. Elsewhere, we estimate the ANZAC cruisers are in Rabaul expecting that we will invade here next. As noted previously, we are in fact approacing Tulagi, with follow on invasions of Munda Pt and Shortlands in tow. It is likely the ANZACs will move against Tulagi. While the 2BB, 4CA and 6DD of SE Fleet are considered equal to the threat, KB is only 2 days' sail from Tulagi. If KB were to leave the Gilberts one day early, we just might bag the ANZACs from the air. After much thought, the low risk in the Gilberts is deemed not to warrant KB's presence. She steams west to sweep up the NE side of the Solomons, hunting for prey while covering these invasions.

Elsewhere, Shanghai SNLF attacks at Guam but the enemy has had time to build up two forts. We take one down but don't quite get the needed odds. Only a matter of time, but we will take the 21st off to recover a little disruption.

16th Army

We continue to approach Davao with an air HQ. After that, we will hit numerous bases here. Sulu Sea Sqdn, after covering the landings at Davao, will pay a night time visit to Cagayan, still occupied by enemy fighters.

China

Our forces are in position and begin the move over the river with 2300AV. The battle for Chengchow begins. Tomorrow our hidden Sallys and Nates will forward deploy to Kaifeng and begin round the clock bombing. Organizing time is over. It's on.

Malaya

Imp Guards have railed into Alor Star and begin the march south. We are ready to attack Georgetown and Taiping. It's on, the sequel.

Burma

Recon reveals that Rangoon has gone up to 14 units present. This is close to confirmation that at least a good chunk of DSwain's reinforcements are landing here. Fortress Burma is the likely effort of the enemy. Should be interesting.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/27/2010 3:15:23 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/27/2010 5:07:23 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
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From: Lone Star Nation
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Cribtop HQ has improved its screen shot technology! Below is the situation in China. We move on Chenchow with flank cover while the enemy moves into Sinyang. He is not there in sufficient force to eject us from level 4 forts, but we will reinforce and drive him out anyway. The stack to the West of Sinyang is our spoiling attack. Enemy moves in this area indicate we have kept their interest here, which is all we were trying to achieve.






Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/27/2010 5:08:22 PM >


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Post #: 25
RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/27/2010 9:23:52 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Dec. 21, 1941

Subs

Our sub captains seem to miss today. I-10 misses DMS Elliot near Raoul Is., I-26 hits no bang on AM Chignecto near the W. Coast, and I-169 misses AM Robin off Pearl. I-162 is DC'd to no effect near Singers.

4th Fleet

4th Fleet is packing to move to her new home. Tarawa falls and the much traveled 51st Nav Gd, which took Makin, Nauru, Ocean and Tarawa, can finally settle in to a more permanent home. TB invasion will hit tomorrow as planned.

SE Fleet

Tulagi is invaded. KB is in position to cover. Operation TS, the chain invasion from Tulagi to Shortlands with KB & SE Fleet in support, looks good so far. KB should be in position tomorrow to fully cover the next invasions and attack anything in Rabaul or the Solomons Sea. We cross our fingers that the ANZAC cruisers fall into our trap.

16th Army

Reinforcements and an Air HQ approach Davao. A Zero Hikotai from Takao moves to Aparri so they can make the jump to Davao next turn. We should have an air battle for the skies over Mindanao soon. Enemy ships are sighted at Manado - a lurking SCTF? Recon says it's two small mine ships, but you never know. KBL, having upgraded to Zeros & B5N1 Kates, is returing to the area to provide additional firepower. Recon shows Tarakan empty. Hmm. We will recon again from Miri to confirm. Many TFs converge on Samah and Camn Ranh Bay. Operation PPT, the chain invasions of Pt. Princesa, Jolo, Manado & Ternate, will ship out tomorrow, escorted by the China Sea Sqdn, a light cover force of CL & DD and an ASW TF. We are concerned that Manado's defenses may require more assets and have an extra SNLF ready to reinforce from Babel if needed. If Tarakan is really empty, we may move up the attack there too.

14th Army

We march on undefended bases. Manila & Legaspi should fall in a few days' time. DSwain is passively waiting in Clark & Bataan. We prepare to move paras, base forces, Zeros, Netties and an Air HQ to SE Fleet AO.

Borneo

Siam Sqdn will take the handoff of major reinforcements tomorrow. Once these forces are safely unloading in Bangkok, Siam Sqdn will be free to begin the dangerous chain invasion of Borneo's west coast.

Malaya

We order IJNAAF bombers into Khota and Alor Star. They will establish air superiority, escorted by Oscars & Nates. Numerous AA and BF forces are in position. 5th Div marches on Georgetown, Imp Gds marches towards the main army. Intel indicates 6 LCUs and 22K enemy troops in Taiping.

Burma

Marching on Tavoy. Enemy troops reconned in Pegu and Rangoon in large numbers, along with 40 fighters & 40 bombers. DSwain is ready for us here.

China

We messed up our river crossing orders near Chengchow and 15th Tank Regt shock attacks 90th Corps alone. Despite this, the attack goes well. Tomorrow should see the rest of the army smash this unit. Our Kwantung bombers shift up to Kaifeng and launch attacks on enemy units near Chengchow marching to the 90th's aid. They will be too late. Did we catch the enemy napping a little here? Perhaps.

Industry

Our new PBs and several ACMs (all conversions started on Dec. 7) will be ready tomorrow. Resources pour into the Home Islands. Production looks good so far.

Below: Screenie of Operation TS in the Solomons (PS - Can anyone tell me why the text on these is low res?):





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/27/2010 9:33:34 PM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/27/2010 9:58:39 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Dec. 22, 1941

Subs

The reverse of Dec. 21 as we rack up kills! I-166 sinks xAK Itria near Toboali, then shells and torpedoes xAKL De Klerk under the waves. I-165 sinks xAK Kiangsu near Singapore. Our ASW TF near Pescadores attacks Tarpon and claims 5 hits (doubt it). The Salmon gets a hit no bang on a resource convoy near Korea. The only bad news is that I-154 finally sinks.

4th Fleet

TB invaded and is taken by shock attack. The IJN TFs will get north fast just in case there are things that go bang in the night nearby. Phase I in this AO is complete. We need to get BFs & supplies in position and identify forces for Phase II, namely Baker and Canton.

SE Fleet

Tulagi falls. Our forces move toward Munda the long way east of the Slot. KB lurks and will end the turn within 7 hexes (torp range) of Rabaul. At Truk, auxiliary ships, including two ARs, arrive from Japan. We have over 160K supply in place. 4th Div has unloaded and waits to attack PM. 144th Rgt. will load for Rabaul very soon, as that is the next op after Shortlands falls. At Guam, we knock forts to 0 with a 2:1 attack. Shock attack tomorrow should finish this charade.

16th Army

We begin to unload 23rd Air Flotilla at Davao. 45 Zeros jump in from Aparri. Several are damaged but no planes or pilots are lost. We set at 80% cap and await DSwain's daily raid on the airfield. This time he will be opposed! KBL approaches from the NE but is still several days out. The Operation PPT TFs move SE.

14th Army

Some excitement! The enemy laid a sub minefield at Takao. By good luck, the first TF to enter the harbor are the DMS returning from HK. Two ports cleared for the price of one! We leave local MSW TFs in place at Takao and at other key ports to counter this in the future.

Elsewhere, we arrive at Lingayen and will take the base soon. Armor is moving down the northern Luzon valley from Aparri to make sure there are no guerillas in the mountains. 16th Div arrives at Batangas. Manila is next.

Borneo

More recon of Tarakan, still no enemy sighted. Are our pilots blind or has DSwain abandoned the base? Why do this when he may be able to damage the facilities if he leaves a BF?

Malaya

Unfortunately, weather over Kuala Lumpur spares it our bombing raid. We'll try again tomorrow.

Burma



China

Our bombers hit the enemy again, their reinforcements don't make hex 87,45 (1 hex SW of Chengchow). Most of 12th Army moves over the river and shock attacks 90th Corps. The corps is absolutely shattered with a 1650:1 attack. Supplies must be low. We lose 1250 casualties with only 2 squads destroyed, while the enemy suffers 11,036 casualties with over 650 squads destroyed ! Banzai!. The enemy in Chengchow is in danger of being encircled and destroyed.

In the south, 38th ID's transports are moving to HK to lift them to the DEI. Other units prepare to march on Kwangchowan.


< Message edited by Cribtop -- 3/27/2010 10:00:26 PM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 3/28/2010 10:43:26 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Dec. 23, 1941

Subs

I-155 attacks xAKL Lemantang with guns and 8 torps near Pontianak. Needless to say, the little merchie sinks under a hail of wasted lead.

4th Fleet

Our invasion fleets retire to the north unmolested. A base force loads at Kwaj for Wake. We have 8 SSX loitering at Kwaj and decide to deploy them as mine fields at TB, Tarawa, Wake, Nauru and Ocean.

SE Fleet

Invasion forces move for Munda with KB sheparding. No sign of ANZACs yet. If they are still at Rabaul they are running out of time to leave. At Takao and Babel, various base forces and small SNLF (including two small para units) load for transfer to the SE Fleet AO. Netties, Zeros and Tinas are headed towards Truk. UPDATE: Forgot to mention that Guam falls today. Tokyo Rose did not forget to crow about it in her nightly broadcast, however.

16th Army

DSwain's P-40s sweep the now occupied Davao airfield (no airfield bombers this turn - can the Allies still see the airfield symbol while preparing their turn? I thought that was fixed). Numerous Zeros meet them for a dog fight in four parts. Hard to tell the exact losses but it looks to be about 4:3 in shoot downs in our favor. The entire 23rd Air Flotilla HQ unloads in one turn, which is very important. KBL is enroute and Sulu Sea Sqdn will bombard Cagayan once we have finished unloading troops. The second big Zero Hikotai will stop by Davao on its way to SE Fleet AO tomorrow and fight the P-40s for a while. We are unloading enough ground force to clean up the island and besiege Cagayan, but may not have enough to actually take the place. Enemy planes, ships and troops are all huddled there - cleaning up this viper's nest will be a high priority over the next two weeks. Elsewhere, the Engineers and Arty that assisted with taking Hong Kong load for a move to the Malaya front, while 38th ID is prepping for targets in Celebes and Timor. The Operation PPT fleet sails towards its first objective - Puerto Princesa.

14th Army

An FT TF unloads a few heavy items from a construction battalion flown into Laoag on Dec. 8. We mention this because it is the last unit that will be sent to Luzon until the fall of Bataan (unless reinforcements are needed). Lingayan and Batangas fall. 16th Div marches on Manila itself. It won't be long at all until we back the Amis into Clark and begin the siege in earnest.

Borneo

Still no enemy seen in Tarakan. More recon.

Malaya

Our Kuala Lumpur airstrike goes in with middling results. No one was home anyway. The enemy B-17s revisit Alor Star to face Oscars, Nates and four flak units. Results: 10 B-17 damaged for 9 runway hits and 1 Nate destroyed on the ground. 5th Div, assisted by our Sallys, will attack Georgetown tomorrow. The rest of 25th Army lumbers towards Georgetown and then Taiping. 2nd ID and various other elements from Japan should be unloading in Bangkok in 3-4 days. Large numbers of base forces and AA units continue to rail into Alor Star and Khota Baru each day.

Burma

The agony of moving 1 hex continues. 15th Army is 30 of 46 miles to Tavoy, long ago abandoned by the enemy. Recon shows large forces in Rangoon and Pegu, but Moulmein is empty. 33rd ID will arrive soon, as will 1st Raiding Regt.

China

We bomb the enemy near Chengchow and are jumped by 10 planes of the AVG! Our 10 Nates actually give good account, and although 5 are lost, only 2 bombers are shot down and we consider ourselves fortunate. Further aerial offensives will have to await the arrival of the Tojos and a Sentai of Oscars, both of which were already en route. One of our probing Tank regts. manages to blunder into an enemy corps moving up from Nanyang. We will retire in combat op mode - so far the Chinese lack the supplies and experience to scare me much even at these odds. The main force moves on Chengchow itself.

In an interesting development, the enemy is falling back from Sinyang and positions partially surrounding the city. Our spoiling attack, plus two strong units advanding toward Sinyang's flank from the Nanking area, have apparently convinced DSwain to withdraw. We can't move too much farther here for fear of a counterattack on Wuhan/Hankow from Central China. However, we probably have enough force to roll up the plains closer to Nanyang from the eastern side of Sinyang, keeping the pressure on and hopefully preventing wholesale reinforcements of the main fight at Chengchow.

Home Front

Not much to report except that we have rationalized production of airframes and engines a bit and that all categories (HI, resources, supplies, etc) continue to go up. So far, so good. 5th Fleet air defenses and picket ships are in place. Would love to reinforce the Kuriles and will soon, but currently have neither the transport planes nor the PPs to make it happen.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 4/1/2010 1:24:52 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 4/1/2010 1:40:14 AM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
RL issues have prevented posting to the AAR for awhile, but we have still been cranking turns. Let's catch up!

Dec. 24, 1941

A holiday for the Imperialists but not for the brave airmen, soldiers and sailors of the Co-Prosperity Sphere!

Subs

I-162 is DC'd near Singers by a USN 4-stacker DD, but no hits are scored. Other DDs noted in the summary indicate this may be the main USN/KNIL squadron. An IJA DB out of Takao bombs an enemy SS. No hit, but we are encouraged to see these attacks happening more often. Perhaps our pilots are already getting better at ASW.

4th Fleet & SE Fleet

Operation TS ships invade Munda Point, covered by KB and SE Fleet, otherwise

16th Army

Furball over Davao! For the second day, our Zeros fight off determined enemy sweeps by P-40E, P-40B and even a few P-35As. Results are very encouraging, as losses in this battle are 7:1 in our favor. The fighting spirit of our pilots rises when Saburo Sakai, injured on the first day of the war over Clark Field, returns to the lists. Total air losses in all theaters today are 22:9 in our favor. The air superiority battle is turning our way. More Zeros will move to Davao tomorrow, with Bettys moving in to sweep the Celebes and Sulu Seas in time for the arrival of the Operation PPT fleets. Cribtop HQ is pleased with progress in the 16th Army AO for the first time in the war.

We are slightly concerned with sightings of an enemy "float fighter" and "torpedo bomber" reconning the port. Enemy CVs? These reports are discounted because: 1) Our unloading troops are covered in Davao by both Sulu Sea Sqdn and, tomorrow, over 80 Zeros (both big Hikotai from Takao), 2) KBL is moving at speed back into these waters with fully upgraded aircraft, and 3) Cribtop HQ thinks it very unlikely DSwain's CVs are in the area due to distance, exposure to risk and the fact that Yorktown isn't in the war yet. We assume these are planes from Cagayan.

14th Army

We march on Clark.

Borneo

DSwain abandoned Brunei and we occupy it for free.

Malaya

Georgetown falls and Penang Fort surrenders. 25th Army is in position to reduce Taiping and begin the race to Singapore. Banzai!

China

We attack and force Chinese 88th Corps to retreat into Chusien. The enemey suffers 1569 casualties and approx 100 squads destroyed.




< Message edited by Cribtop -- 4/1/2010 1:42:05 AM >


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RE: Basejumping the Learning Cliff - Cribtop(J) v DSwai... - 4/2/2010 4:33:10 PM   
Cribtop


Posts: 3731
Joined: 8/10/2008
From: Lone Star Nation
Status: offline
Dec. 25, 1941

Merry (virtual) Christmas!

Subs

Off the US West Coast, AM Chignecto continues its vendetta against I-3 to no effect. We move I-3's patrol route a little to try to throw this ASW unit off. I-158 fires on a Dutch DD near Lingga but misses. More evidence the USN/KNIL squadron is lurking here. I-166 sinks xAK Edward Luckenbach near Oosthaven. Yummy. A Betty out of Saigon reports a hit on an enemy sub. Very encouraging for this early in the war.

SE Fleet

Munda falls. Shortlands next.

16th Army

Our planes from Davao move over to the offensive. A sweep of Cagayan is very effective, with 4 enemy fighters downed to no losses on our side. It looks like DSwain is evacuating his planes as there are no P-40E in the fight. Next, in a bit of a surprise, KBL returns to these waters with upgraded aircraft and raids the xAKLs that have stubbornly (indeed inexplicably) loitered in Cagayan harbor. The one plane CAP is swept aside and Kates sink xAKLs Saragami, Taurus, Escalante and Elcano. Only the Dos Hermanos survives. What were these ships doing here? I assumed hiding under fighter cover to facilitate making a break for it, but they stayed until the bitter end as air superiority went our way in the last two days. No troops shown as casualties in the replay so I doubt they were pulling fragments. Well, whatever they were up to they are now artificial reefs.

Tomorrow we will move one of the Zero Hikotais out of Davao toward SE Fleet, while Bettys will fly in. This will make the surrounding waters more dangerous for DSwain's ships and provide additional cover for the fast approaching ships of Operation PPT. Two enemy ships are spotted at Tarakan, so the Bettys may help neutralize any threat from that direction. This is a significant development in the conquest of the DEI, and justifies the invasion of Davao, despite all its difficulties.

14th Army

Bayombong falls.

Malaya

97 Sallys pound Taiping. Few casualties, but we are working on disrupting the enemy in case he makes a stand here. That said, the little arrow has appeared and I believe DSwain will rail out some or all of these forces. The B-17s (I hate those guys) bomb recently liberated and unoccupied Georgetown airfield. Leaking CAP from Alor Star damages 15 bombers, they get 28 runway hits.

Logistics

Camn Ranh Bay makes port lvl 6. We will take her to 7.

< Message edited by Cribtop -- 4/2/2010 4:35:15 PM >


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