From: Jerez, Spain, EU
After negotiating with my opponent to restart our game playing like japanese, we are both agree with a hard restricted home rules to avoid un-historicall situations.
Cantona2 is a reliable player with a large experience with WITP(Vanilla)/(AE), therefore I am very glad to test all these with him.
Any comment will be wellcomed.
House Rules agreed (with Historical Comments):
AE Historical Game Project
There are some players (myself included) who think that WitP AE is more than a game, actually closer to a simulation, but there are certain shortcomings, impossible to solve with the engine of this or any other game, and as a result, since its origins, WITP has been enriched by what has come to be known is as Home Rule (House Rules), mainly to avoid gameys.
This project aims at the implementation of a series of Home Rules to be used in our game (consisting in a set of rules that would prevent that certain conditions occur during the development of our game, or that the effects of certain strategic operations have some influence in the decisions that we will have to take (sometimes things are so absurd as to send Australian troops to New Guinea when the Japanese have landed in northern Australia).
Similarly, many players prefer a system of victory score untied to the arbitrary use the machine applies. The intention is also to provide a different perspective to the usual system of points to measure our performance under historical circumstances. We will play as military leaders but in the framework of the historical-political circumstances of the moment.
2 .- HISTORICAL CIRCUMSTANCES
Many of us know the historical circumstances which are beyond the scope of the game and which many prefer to avoid in order not to limit their capabilities during the game. The Japanese Army was deeply opposed to the Imperial Navy, this was a secular division between the two branches of the armed forces of the Empire, which forced to discard many potential measures available to the Japanese during the war. Since the very origins of the conflict the Imperial Army had as its first enemy, China and as potential enemy No. 1, the Soviets, with whom Japanese feared a confrontation after the clashes on the border of Manchuria in 1938-39.
The Imperial Army had always believed that its primary focus and the true interest of Japan lied in China and Manchuria in order to defend themselves against a feared Soviet invasion. This approach meant that support for the strategy "south" (the proposal by the Navy), which affected the conflict that would ensue from December 7, 1941 and that would be greatly influenced by the extent in which Japanese war power served the interests of the Army and its primary objective, the theater of China, and as a result the low number of divisions who were available to be used in support of these "strictly naval" operations in this new theater of war.
The senior officers of both branches of the Armed Forces professed a real animosity toward his colleagues, and this resulted in many problems (aircraft production, planning, etc....).
In January 1941 Captain Kuroshima from Planning Division of the Operations First Section proposed, during the deliberations on the planning committee chaired by Ugaki, the invasion of Ceylon, who accepted it on the condition that it would be carried out in the framework of a strategic partnership with a German offensive in the Middle East. In February, the war games were held aboard the HIJMS Yamato with the proposal of Kuroshima, which would eventually be accepted by the Naval General Staff as the naval official strategy for phase 2. Was introduced as such at the joint conference of IGHQ in mid-March and immediately rejected by the Army when it became clear that the operation depended on the supply of divisions to make the amphibious assault on Ceylon. The Navy looked for an alternative plan and returned to the first proposal of Ugaki to act in the Eastern Pacific, modified to include the possibility of a veto from the Army. I will not elaborate any further because my intention is not to teach history. After the attack of Doolittle, the final decision was the invasion of Midway along the diversionary operation in the Aleutians, which the Army had not been opposed to due to the small number of troops involved.
Also before Midway, Americans valued the opportunity to request support from a British carrier, which was immediately rejected by Admiral King due to issues of national prestige.
All this is impossible to simulate in WITP AE, however, we can use some proper tools in order to enable mechanics to allow us to represent the historical setting.
We may argue that many circumstances are already reflected by the political points cost imposed on us by WITP AE, but there are many other circumstances, as would be the case of a potential invasion of Australia, India and Ceylon by the Japanese (which should have a extra-high political cost, that is, the one necessary to overcome the opposition of high officials of the Army that dominated Japanese national politics), and the corresponding restrictions for the Allies (with an invasion of India or Ceylon would be ridiculous to send British troops outside of these scenarios already of such a great strategic importance for the United Kingdom; equally, an invasion of Australia would force the allies to take hard decisions to avoid the fatal consequences which could be represented by restrictions on the allocation of restricted units to other commands) .
Nobody should think that this is a homemade set of rules intended to maul the possibilities of the Japanese, in fact, the above is just one example among many that could be cited, so in the following section I will analyze each of the points, showing some historical details behind it.
It is not a "tunnel" through which one player is going be forced to pass, like any field commander the player will have to adapt to the circumstances of a full context. It is not logical or rational for Australian troops to be thrown into an offensive in New Guinea while the homeland is being invaded by enemy forces, as it wouldn´t be logical to spend any more political points to reallocate troops that are in Australia to other areas in the above circumstances (may redundancy serve in the above example).
3.- HOME RULES
The normal House rules to prevent anti-historical situations or gameys:
- KB will make a single attack on Pearl Harbor, and will return to Japan, if the first assault on Wake results in failure, you may transfer the returning units deemed necessary to complete a second operation.
- Americans cannot react to the landings at Tarawa, Wake and Miri (those initially planned by the Japanese) to avoid gameys (it's absurd to think that the Americans had been waiting for the Japanese in destinations unexpected). Once the first landings take place Americans are relieved from this rule (if not landings occur, by 14th of that month).
- Japanese submarines can only be equipped with the seaplane E14Y1 Glenn.
- No parachute unit portion deployments (one unit- one target)
- No submarine invasions (with one exception, Marine Rangers from SST submarines). Here it would be allowed the exceptional operation against Makin on board the USS Argonaut and USS Dolphin.
- All PT torpedo boats in a hexagon base must be in the same TF.
-Four-engine LBs cannot operate below 10,000 feet in naval attack missions.
-The selection of leaders for Naval Task Forces should be adjusted to its size (Admirals for forces of several battleships or even battle cruisers, vice admirals for very important operational forces with BB or CVs, no ASW groups with a leader other than Captain, CPT-LtCdr-Cdr)
-The Malacca Strait cannot be crossed by surface ships of the Imperial Navy until Singapore has fallen to the Japanese player.
- Tokyo cannot be bombarded with an atomic bomb.
3.1 Chinese Theater Home Rules
- It is not allowed to either side the bombardment of the industry in Chinese bases. Industry in China was mainly artisanal and any bombardment of the same does not faithfully reproduce the damage on it. The attacks against the "manpower" are allowed (if the damage causes damage to the Chinese industry is simply a reflection of the fact that the damage on the population and resources is serious enough to affect it).
- The airbases in China cannot operate with four-engine bombers. There will be a limit up to a maximum of 4 squadrons of four-engine non-Chinese (U.S.) LBs and may be operated only from aerodromes of level 6 or higher. The air support to the operational bases of these squads must be by American units.
- Chinese forces cannot go outside its borders except those assigned to the NCAC. These forces were created with the intention of re-opening the route to Burma once Rangoon fell. However, there will be restrictions to the total of Chinese forces the player may assign to this HQ (Stilwell had to suffer many tantrums due to the stubbornness of senior Chinese who only accepted receiving direct orders from his "Generalissimo" which nominally controlled the Chinese forces except those run by warlords, and with very little affinity with the American general).
The following rules must be taken into consideration:
- No Chinese troops may enter Burma until the fall of Rangoon.
- The maximum number of Chinese forces under NCAC in November 1942 must be 9 divisions. (A Chinese Corps = 3 infantry divisions)
In November 1942, Chinese and British came to an agreement for the project Anakim (an ambitious project to recover Burma and restore supply to China). At the Casablanca conference held in January 1943, U.S. strongly supported Anakim as a viable option eventually dismissed by British. From this date on all previous restrictions shall be suspended.
3.2 House Rules regarding Kwantung Army
By 1934, and following the deployment of soviet "superbombers" in the Maritime Province of Siberia, all the contingency plans in the event of a conflict with the Soviet Union underwent a major revision, which envisaged a significant growth of military forces on the border with the Soviet Union. From the 64.900 men deployed in 1931 there were 165,000 in 1935, and in 1938 incidents held at Nomonhan Changkufeng converted Soviet Union the main threat in the eyes of high-ranks in Imperial Army (the dropout rate of 28 % in 13 days of combat in Mukden deeply alarmed the Japanese military). The political main idea from that time was: "neither invade nor be invaded." The "Yamashita" commission sent to Germany in 1940 strongly recommended the motorization of the army (fact that did not suit to traditional Army leaders who relied on the infantry as a key element of combat and the Bushido code as the primary standard.) For 1941 there were 400,600 troops stationed in Manchuria that were tremendously increased to 700,000 by July the 2th!
The Imperial Conference of 2nd Of July , 1941, decided the following policy guidelines:
1. - Do not intervene in the Russo-German war.
2. - Proceed with cautious diplomatic negotiations while consolidating the secret preparations for war against the Soviet Union.
3. - If the result of the German-Soviet war was favorable to Japanese interests, the Army would opt for the "northern solution" (the invasion of neighboring areas of the Soviet Union).
The consequence of these decisions, the result of the outbreak of the war between Germany and Soviet Union would have the effect of suspending the operation "Chungking".
We're used to the idea that in WITP AE me must pay politic points to change the command of certain units before reassignment to other areas of command occurs, but this always results in the form of assault points, ignoring the artillery or planes or HQs, something totally unreal. I could continue to dwell on the topic of Japan's policy regarding the Soviet Union during the following years, but I will not elaborate any further so as not to bore you, and we will consider the following:
1. - Units should pay political points to get out of Kwantung.
2 .- Artillery units may leave up to a maximum of 1 artillery regiment or battalion regiments for every 3 regiments or equivalent units who have already paid the political price to exit Kwantung.
3. - No Kwantung HQs may leave until 1944 or until the invasion of the Mariana Islands (Operation A-Go), the occupation of Rangoon or the occupation of a base in DEI with an airfield with level 4 or higher occurs.
4.- As of June 1942 no air unit can be extracted from Kwangtung, and thereafter it can be done but up to a monthly Daitai but always keeping 4 Fighter Daitais and 8 bombers Daitais in Manchuria. This does not prevent any air operation from Manchuria to China.
Another possibility is to attack the Soviet Union, as many of you know the main Soviet spy (Richard Sorge) maintained an excellent relationship with Japanese diplomats (some of them secret supporters of the Communist Party), who provided invaluable information to Stalin (in the Battle Moscow he had “privileged” information that enabled him to know that the Japanese would not attack the Soviet Union as they had set their eyes on other interests), therefore:
1 .- If the Japanese player decides that he wants to attack the Soviet Union he will previously invade Soviet territory in any hexagon without provoking any attack, causing the activation of Soviet forces. The war may be caused but will not count on with the surprise factor.
2. - Once Soviets activated , no Japanese unit may get an HQ reassignment, except isolated units that can be evacuated by sea.
3.3 Home Rules regarding the D.E.I
1. - Dutch Air units cannot be disbanded nor can they be withdrawn.
2. - Dutch ships may operate in Indic Ocean waters or between Australia and New Guinea, but not in the Pacific.
3. - Dutch submarines can operate within the waters that lie between the South China Sea and northern Australia (the area of Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Celebes and Timor).
4. - The garrison requirements must be observed (you cannot ignore the garrison requirements for acts of sabotage before the Japanese occupation).
5.- During 1942-1943 the Allies may not conduct bombing operations against resources / oil / refineries in the DEI
6 .- The IJA Japanese units must have a minimum of 25 planning points to land in any of the enemy DEI bases.
3.4 Home Rules regarding the Philippines
1.-All American troops should have replacements OFF (It´s not logical that they receive replacements arriving from the United States).
3.5 Home Rules regarding Australia (including New Zealand)
The possibility of an invasion of Australia, taken into account by the Imperial Navy, was dismissed by the Army by the huge demand of logistics and forces (10 divisions) it required. The Japanese player may choose this option but not without paying a previous political price(time and will) , the price required should be evaluated as follows:
- The attack on Australia should wait until Timor, Ambon, Kendari, Mandanao, Batavia Soerabaja and are under Japanese control since the Japanese supply lines could have been attacked from these bases.
- The Japanese player can start landing in Australia once he has a reserve of 3000 political points. Once started, political points should be kept until the capture of all ports in northern Australia (Darwin, Wyndham-Broome-Port Hedland-Broome) (preemptive invasion option) or once Perth, or Sydney or Melbourne or Brisbane have fallen into Japanese hands (choice of long-range strategic operation). Once these goals achieved, the Japanese player will be relieved to spend those reserve political points in what he considers best.
- Additionally, IJA units to be landed on Australian territory must have a minimum of 80 preparation points (not needed for IJN ground units).
The dreaded invasion of Australia would have undoubtedly had an impact on the global war for the Allies, so consider the following:
-In case of a Japanese invasion of Australia, Allies will not be able to spend political points in any other option other than sending forces to Australia by any means or medium, whether land or air forces (with the exception of points to reassign leaders).
3.6 Home Rules regarding India
During 1942, the British authorities in India had to address the security of their main colony ("the jewel in the crown") that was a hotbed of rebellion, with an atmosphere poisoned by passive resistance and revolts. Gandhi had mobilized their followers of the Congress Party and the unwillingness of people to the British was growing. There was a fear in the British commanders that the Japanese would benefit from this circumstance (as they had effectively planned with the Indian National Army) and Wavell, commanding general of India had to dedicate 57 battalions only to maintain order. So critical was the situation that Slim had to find recruits for his reserve among venereal disease patients in hospitals in Calcutta and Barrackpore.
To be considered initially:
1 .- During 1942, no Restricted allied unit in India may change its command area.
2 .- If Japanese forces cross the border with India, all political points spent by units of the Commonwealth can only be made to send reinforcements units to India.
Now let´s consider the political price of a Japanese invasion of India.
Obviously, these rules will allow an easy conquest of Burma and the arrival to the Indian border, this is no reason to believe that the Japanese were to attempt an invasion of India that would be interpreted by Hindus as a "liberation" of their British oppressors, this idea was substantiated by the formation of the aforementioned "Indian National Army." If the Japanese player wants to take the decision to invade Indian borders before 1944 he must also have a stock of political points (just as in the case of Australia). This reserve will be of 4,000 political points and will be relieved from the obligation to maintain it at the time they fall into his hands either Calcutta or Bombay or Colombo and Trincomalee. Also, all units of the IJA that are to cross the border with India or land in Ceylon must have at least 80 preparation points.
3.7 Home Rules regarding Thailand
Thai forces collaborated in the occupation of the eastern areas of Burma, therefore let´s consider:
1. - Thai ground forces may carry out guarnition tasks stationed at bases in Burma no more than 3 hexes from the Thai border.
Under pressure from the Japanese, Phibun regime declared war on Great Britain and the United States in January 1942, but the Thai ambassador in Washington, Seni Pramoj, refused to hand over the declaration to the government of US, which in turn did not declare war on Thailand.
2. - The territory of Thailand shall not be violated in any way by the U.S. armed forces. British are exempt from this rule.
3.8 Restrictions on the Royal Navy
The Royal Navy was vigilant for the interests of the British Empire and its Condominium and its interests in the Pacific were almost nil.
1. - Until September 1942 no high-value (HV) units (consider CV, CVL, BB, BC) will operate in the Pacific (except for repairs, transit to ports in US and return from them).
2. - From January 1943 a single high-value naval unit could operate in the Pacific (as happened with HMS Victorious in the Solomon campaign, which operated alongside the USS Saratoga)
3. - From 1945 onwards the Royal Navy can operate freely in the Pacific (creation of the Pacific Fleet under U.S. command).
3.9 Restrictions on the US
1. - In case of a invasion in Hawaii, all reassignments of restricted troops will be to operate in Hawaii.
2. - The high-value vessels of the Pacific Fleet (BB, CV) will operate only between the West Coast and Hawaii until Hawaii islands are fully recovered.
It is hardly conceivable that American interests were to be set on another goal different from the recovery of their own territory before thinking about the interests of its allies.
Home Rule 3.10 relating to air warfare
No air night attacks with <50 moonlight before 1943
Night bombing can only be made at or above 3,000 feet.
Thanks to Aristoteles for a correct translate from spanish to english.
EDIT: New House Rule -3.10-
EDIT: New House Rules -See page 8, post 229- . Thanks to Seydlitz.
< Message edited by Fletcher -- 5/19/2010 5:15:50 PM >