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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari, please.

 
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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 8:27:07 PM   
FatR

 

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Turn of The Year

The game slowed down somewhat as Bigred struggled with RL misfortunes, and I was overworked... but we finally got to 1943!

The last weeks of December were quiet... even Allied sub force demonstrated very little activity, probably waiting until their torpedoes heal. I continue to pound on China, but progress has been slower than I hoped. No major offensive activities by the Allies anywhere, although their forces seem to be slowly building up in northern Australia. Save for persistent Allied raids against my troops advancing across the Burma Road without close fighter cover, and regular pounding of Oahu and Chinese troops, aviation on both sides restricts itself to night operations.

However, the action is about to pick the pace, as I've decided to soften Little Andaman with repeated naval bombardments in the preparation for invasion, and to discourage Bigred from trying to sneak small convoys there.

The victory screen below shows that Japanese aviation still might claim domination, as far as bomb tonnage, unloaded on the enemy is concerned... I don't think, though, that I can ever again suppress a major Allied airbase, unless open to naval bombardments, at this point. Their fighter reserves should be pretty deep by now, and growing in quality, with advent of Spitfires and coming of Corsairs. I still have three months of relatively easy life in the air, though, before Allies get their first really numerous third-generation fighter, namely Hellcat. Soon you'll see what my industry prepares to greet the future Allied air offensive.





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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 8:31:18 PM   
FatR

 

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Japanese Industry Screen

I'm producing very little armaments because you only lose any significant number guns when you're suffering defeats. So, war successes are reinforcing itself here. Vehicles, on the other hand, are lost at prodigious rate even in offensive operations, as Japanese tank regiments are pretty fragile and motorized support often gets blown up as well. So I'm making lots of them.




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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 8:38:59 PM   
FatR

 

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Japanese Economic Statistics

I'm in pretty good shape everywhere (including current stockpiles at Home Islands), save for continuing reduction in oil reserves. As Magwe is going to be blown up by Allied aviation probably sooner than later (I'm loading it with massive piles of AAA and fighters, but considering the power of 4Es, this just means delaying the inevitable), I hardly have any improvements to look forward.

HI levels will most likely stabilize at 400k now that the number of pilots in the training program is going to increase. I wanted at least 600k for late-war, but, well, such is life. At least I hope that my intensive air and naval building programs will be enough to keep Allies far away from Japanese shipping lanes for another 1.5 years at least.




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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 8:48:07 PM   
FatR

 

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Ship Production

A deceptively bad balance... Katsuragi is already accelerated to December of 1943, and by decelerating her I'll be able to hold until completion of subs will free enough Naval points for everything else.

However, I was forces to stop the construction of new subs. I'm going to finish all subs, except for KS class, that started building before December of 1942, but after that I intent to keep only Seiran carriers and C2 class large subs in production.

I'm building all merchantmen, except for Std-C xAKs, and Std xAKLs which have rather bad fuel consuption/cargo tonnage ratio. At the moment resource delivery to Home Islands is not a problem, as conquests in China provided large amounts them close to home. Even with Yusen and Husimi xAK classes entirely converted to AKs and not used for resourse hauling, I'm able to suck resources from SRA as fast as they stockpile too. But I want both a reserve of xAKs for the future and more fuel-efficient xAKs of Std-A and Std-B classes. So, merchant building will continue as the same pace, as long as my stockpile of Merchant points allows.




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< Message edited by FatR -- 5/5/2011 8:55:41 PM >

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 9:11:35 PM   
FatR

 

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Air Production

As you can see, my aircraft research program bore significant fruits already. I'm going to build Tonies mostly for protecting my bases at Burma, primarily oil fields of Magwe. They have better chances of surviving Allied heavies. And I believe that armor increases chances of pilot survival. They might prove handy when Home Islands will be temporarily threatened from Soviet airbases as well.

Air losses have been low lately, and I even started to replace Nates in training squadrons with Oscars and Tojos. I also continue to build Ki-45-KAIa, because they won't be replaced until the middle of 1944, and because a couple of bomber squadrons can be converted to fighter bombers in the spring of 1943.

I thought long and hard about my production plans for naval fighters. And I've decided to go the expensive route of getting the best planes possible. This means that A6M5/b production will convert to A6M8, as soon as its available, requring further expansion of Mitsubishi Ha-33 engine production, and that Georges will be built en masse instead of A6M4-J/A6M8-J. A6M4 will remain in production for 1943-44, as differences between it and A6M8 are pretty minimal. I want to do everything I can to preserve my current frontline elite of naval aviators, and this means doing everything in my power to keep the rates of exchange as favorable as possible. I think I'll test A6M4-J by building them in small numbers on one of the auxilary factories, though.




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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 9:19:44 PM   
FatR

 

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Air Research

As you can see, I'm advancing Ki-44-IIc at a brisk pace, and some other planes (B6N2, Ki-43-IIb), have accelerated already too. B6N2 research facilities will convert to production on its availability date 3-4 months from now. B6N2a only differs by having a radar, and its radar is not going to be available earlier than late 1944 anyway.

I'm also pleased that a couple of minor types, with only one research factory, likely will accelerate by a month.




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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/5/2011 9:28:43 PM   
FatR

 

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Engine Production

No shortages of anything, except for Nakajima Ha-34... I'm stockpiling engines that will be of use later in the war - they are not going to rust away in warehouses, so it's better to save a large pile now, who knows what might happen later.




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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/6/2011 9:33:34 AM   
FatR

 

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New Year's Turkey Shoot

1943 opened with a burst of action. Allies are once again moving ships and planes to relieve Little Andaman. Before even knowing of it, I thought to give them some 16-inch New Year's present, and moved two TFs, including IJN's main battleline TF, with both Nagatos, to bombard Little Andaman. On January 1st they sortied - but, for some reason, failed to bombard, despite moving into hex...

They retreated to Trinkat, and Allied aviation from Little Andaman had reacted to them. The most one-sided air combat I've ever seen in AE ensued, as Tojos, Oscars and A6M2s from Hiryu's airgroup, placed on Trinkat to give my capital ships a heavier armed air cover, feasted on escorting Allied fighters.



I wonder, if Allied pilots' training was lacking. Even escorts usually do better than that.

Only 6 Blenheims actually were in the attack. They placed a bomb into Nagato and Mutsu each, but these bombs failed to penetrate even the paint.

Expect heavier action tomorrow, as I'll try to hit the Allied convoy with everything I have. Unfortunately, I don't have KB-1. Zuiho just started her 1/43 upgrade, Akagi, Kaga and Shokaku are still in repair.



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< Message edited by FatR -- 5/6/2011 9:35:10 AM >

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/7/2011 10:11:04 AM   
FatR

 

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January 2, 1943: Second Naval Battle of Little Andaman

Well, for a loose definition of "naval battle". Not that action wasn't grand, but capital ships on both sides failed to fire a single shot at each other.

First, Japanese taskforces went in, brushed aside some PT boats, and then my cruiser group ran into the minefield CA Suzuya and DD Asakaze rammed mines, and fell into an escort TF, which wasn't able to move out of the hex until daytime.

However, my battleships were able to proceed with naval bombardment unmolested, and caused damage that proved to be decisive:

Night Naval bombardment of Little Andaman at 44,59

Allied aircraft
no flights

Allied aircraft losses
SBD-3 Dauntless: 5 destroyed on ground
P-38G Lightning: 4 destroyed on ground
Hurricane XIIb: 6 destroyed on ground
A-24 Banshee: 2 destroyed on ground
Hurricane IIc Trop: 2 destroyed on ground
F4F-4 Wildcat: 1 destroyed on ground

Japanese Ships
BB Mutsu
BB Nagato
CL Jintsu

Allied ground losses:
279 casualties reported
Squads: 0 destroyed, 8 disabled
Non Combat: 25 destroyed, 8 disabled
Engineers: 3 destroyed, 4 disabled
Guns lost 6 (2 destroyed, 4 disabled)
Vehicles lost 14 (10 destroyed, 4 disabled)

Airbase hits 11
Airbase supply hits 2
Runway hits 47
Port hits 7

E13A1 Jake acting as spotter for BB Mutsu
BB Mutsu firing at 18th British Division
E13A1 Jake acting as spotter for BB Nagato
BB Nagato firing at Little Andaman
E13A1 Jake acting as spotter for CL Jintsu
CL Jintsu firing at RAF 222 Group Base Force


At morning, the Allied convoy moved into Little Andaman, weathering a few subs attacks (only one xAK got damaged), and somehow not engaging my cripples, while not being engaged by other surface forces, which fell back to Trinkat. Vals and Kates from Port Blair, and Betties from Victoria Point attacked Allied ships in both phases. Japanese sweeps came after raids, and escort fighters suffered significant losses, particularly hapless 13th Sentai from Victoria Point, as its Nicks proved to be useless in dogfight. But due to damage suffered by Allied aviation on the previous day and on ground, they were able to ensure clear airspace for bombers. Results of attacks:

BB Prince of Wales, Torpedo hits 4, and is sunk
BB Ramillies, Bomb hits 2, Torpedo hits 3, heavy damage
CL Leander, Bomb hits 1, on fire
xAK El Madina, Torpedo hits 2, and is sunk
xAK Jalaganga, Torpedo hits 1, and is sunk
xAK Jalayamuna, Torpedo hits 1, on fire
xAK Jalaputra, Torpedo hits 1, heavy damage
xAK Wing Sang, Bomb hits 3, heavy fires, heavy damage

9 Kates (which did all of the torpedo runs on battleships) and 2 Vals were shot down by flak, or written off after return, despite flying from 2 hexes... And Helen skipbombers from Victoria Point did not sortie, only their escort flew (including above-menioned 13th Sentai) flew.


Unfortunately, Dauntlesses from Little Andamn flew too this day. LRCAPs and leaking CAPs shot down a lot of them, but the raid in the morning phase numbered 56 bombers, and many got through. As they faced a slowed-down taskforce with pretty puny AA armament, results were predictable:

Morning Air attack on TF, near Little Andaman at 44,59
Weather in hex: Clear sky
Raid spotted at 43 NM, estimated altitude 16,000 feet.
Estimated time to target is 16 minutes

Japanese aircraft
A6M2 Zero x 13
A6M3b Zero x 10
Ki-43-Ic Oscar x 3
Ki-43-IIa Oscar x 13

Allied aircraft
A-24 Banshee x 20
SBD-3 Dauntless x 36

No Japanese losses

Allied aircraft losses
A-24 Banshee: 3 destroyed
SBD-3 Dauntless: 11 destroyed, 10 damaged

Japanese Ships
DD Matsukaze, Bomb hits 1, heavy fires, heavy damage
CA Suzuya, Bomb hits 5, heavy fires
CL Yahagi, Bomb hits 2, on fire

Suzuya sank later in the day. Yahagi and Matsukaze might be able to escape, unless Allied ships crush them on the next night. Asakaze barely holds above the water and must be scuttled.

Air losses for the day:





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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/18/2011 4:13:30 PM   
FatR

 

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Naval Battle of Little Andaman: Aftermath

Mopping-up action continued for several days. Unfortunately, CL Yahagi failed to avoid Allied ships on the way out and took damage that eventually proved fatal. DDs Murasame and Asakaze were lost to Allied mines.

In return, as much as 14 medium xAKs were sunk by air (LBA and KB-1), surface and sub attacks. DD Foxhound was eliminated in surface combat. BB Ramillies survives, unfortunately, but was bombed hard in the harbor of Little Andaman and most likely can't be moved anymore.

Overall, this can be considered a Pyrrhic victory, particularly as Bigred managed to deliver newer flak guns to Little Andaman, and these inflicted heavy damage on my bombers, including Kaga's TB squadron (almost a dozen of Kates went down, despite attacking at 25k in an attempt to kill Allied ships caught in the port). Allied xAK losses don't matter. Bigred doesn't even use any of the newer and more valuable types for his suicide convoys. If Ramillies can be finished, though, the final outcome will look more favorable

Meanwhile, on the other side of the SRA, near Sydney, I-7 sank a ship that her captain identified as CL De Ruyter, and the fleet intelligence as CL Achilles.



China

Advance from Burma is stymied at Kunming by Allied troops airlifted here. Their number stopped increasing recently, though, so I believe I'll be eventually able to attrit the Allied force and take the city. Allied bomber aviation, primarily heavies flying from India, constantly pounds my troops, but in the jungle their raids are ineffective. My closest airbase is Ledo (there is an overall shortage of air support in Burma), so I cannot provide constant air cover (of course, action at Andamans distracted Japanese aviation as well).

In Central China my main force had seized Kweilin and turned north, seeing the opportunity to cross the river north of this city (the last major geographical obstacle, after which I'll be able to establish an overland connection with Southern Army forces from Burma) against only a token force. Bigred moves reinforcements to stop me, but hopefully air attacks will delay them,

< Message edited by FatR -- 5/18/2011 4:14:42 PM >

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/18/2011 6:10:18 PM   
John 3rd


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Just caught up reading the AAR. We're within a month of each other as Lew and I are in mid-Dec 42. Interesting reading the similarities and differences within the games.

I have been creaming my opponent's airpower--particularly fighters--over the last couple of months and have come to the conclusion that pilot experience must be terrible. Couple those pilots losses with extreme airframe attrition, forcing older plane types to stay on the front line, and one can understand the high Allied losses.

What do you think of the M4?


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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/18/2011 7:13:00 PM   
FatR

 

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Had little chance to test them so far. Bigred avoids directly engaging Japanese aviation at the moment. As a result my air losses remain higher, due to ops losses. I'm rarely taking fight to the Allies now, to preserve veteran Japanese pilots and because limited range of my current top-of-the-line fighters (A6M3b/4, Ki-44-IIa, Ki-61-Ia) is too low for deep attacks. A6M5 and Ki-43-IIa have good range, but A6M5s mostly go to carrier airgroups, and I have no confidence in Ki-43s.

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/18/2011 7:47:05 PM   
John 3rd


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Understand that. I just had seven CVs upgrade to the M5 last turn. My stockpile of 200 pretty much went POOF!


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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/20/2011 1:59:51 PM   
FatR

 

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The Himalayan Campaign Is Won

Kunming was finally overrun on January 19th:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ground combat at Kunming (69,48)
Japanese Deliberate attack
Attacking force 55834 troops, 881 guns, 1049 vehicles, Assault Value = 1773
Defending force 23692 troops, 328 guns, 0 vehicles, Assault Value = 596
Japanese adjusted assault: 1755
Allied adjusted defense: 838
Japanese assault odds: 2 to 1 (fort level 0)
Japanese forces CAPTURE Kunming !!!

Allied aircraft
no flights

Allied aircraft losses
No Allied losses

Combat modifiers
Defender: terrain(+), leaders(+)
Attacker:

Japanese ground losses:
1346 casualties reported
Squads: 0 destroyed, 80 disabled
Non Combat: 1 destroyed, 72 disabled
Engineers: 0 destroyed, 11 disabled


Allied ground losses:
7858 casualties reported
Squads: 356 destroyed, 17 disabled
Non Combat: 420 destroyed, 13 disabled
Engineers: 109 destroyed, 3 disabled
Guns lost 57 (55 destroyed, 2 disabled)
Units retreated 10


Assaulting units:
55th Division
33rd Division
12th Division
Imperial Guards Division
2nd Tank Division
2nd Ind.Art.Mortar Battalion
2nd Mortar Battalion
18th Medium Field Artillery Regiment
14th Army
1st Medium Field Artillery Regiment
9th Ind.Hvy.Art. Battalion
2nd Ind.Hvy.Art. Battalion
8th Medium Field Artillery Regiment
15th Ind.Art.Mortar Battalion
3rd Medium Field Artillery Regiment
2nd Field Artillery Regiment
21st Medium Field Artillery Battalion
17th Medium Field Artillery Regiment

Defending units:
1st Chinese Corps
147th(Sep) Infantry Rgt /1
54th Chinese Corps
60th Chinese/C Corps
111th Chindit Brigade
26th Indian Div /1
NCAC
4th Chinese Base Force
5th Group Army
16th Chinese Base Force

Bigred paused his airlift operations for a week after I bombed his Skytrain fleet at Chungking (although I'm not sure this was the reason, not too many planes were actually destroyed), and this allowed me to take the base. Take note, that all non-Chinese troops there were lifted by air.

About time as well, because Chinese reinforcements were near the city. Of my troops 12th Division and ImpGuards are heavily disabled, other units are in decent shape, but most of them are scheduled for the assault on Little Andaman. 2nd Tank Division will exploit this victory for now.

As you can see, with Kunming's garrizon retreating to the south and my main body moving north (although air operations aren't going in my favor there, and I'm not confident my forces will be able to cross the river before the main Chinese force is in place to meet them), it just might be sufficient for this task:





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< Message edited by FatR -- 5/20/2011 2:03:16 PM >

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Post #: 554
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/22/2011 7:52:52 PM   
FatR

 

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Air War - The Balance Is Shifting

Recently Bigred delivered a few significant blows to my bomber force, by laying strong traps. But this threat was present in the game since beginning. What worries me more is his increased focus. Allied bombers now repeatedly visit the airfield of Magwe in large numbers by night, inflicting small by steady losses at practically no cost, despite two Sentais of Nicks on night patrol and the massive concentration of flak. While air-to-ground results of the night bombing are OK, the problem is in air-to-air results. Bombers apparently get as much chances to fire at the interceptors as ever, if not more, while the later often fail to press attacks, so 4Es just shoot the opposition down without taking losses.

By contrast, Japanese night bombing is practically ineffective against any protected Allied airfield, because Ki-49-IIa is too undergunned to shoot down any Allied fighter, dies to flak much more easily, and so on.

I tried to stop the Allied offensive by mounting a day raid on weakly defended Chittagong airfield. Indeed, there was only one squadron on CAP, but this squadron consisted of Spitfires and they scored 19:2 against my Zeros with elite pilots. While the airfield was bombed with no loss to my Helens and about a dozen of planes destroyed on ground, this did not really soften such a huge blow. Well, and reminder that A6M2 and A6M3b must be withdrawn from the frontline ASAP. I hope A6M4 and A6M5 will do better. In the meanwhile, I guess just taking punches and trying to minimize the hurt is in order...

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/28/2011 2:25:55 PM   
FatR

 

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More on the Air War

Bigred decided to redo the turn mentioned in the last post, so the Zero massacre never happened. Still, Allied air pressure remains considerable. Even in China I no longer have free reign.

Industry night bombing to which Bigred temporarily shifted in Burma proved to be largely ineffectual, though. Just one hit on Magwe refinery in three days. I guess Nicks and flak guns do something good for me, after all.

Allied flak grows ever-stronger. I don't know what the heck Allies have at Little Andaman, but even against no CAP I'm losing almost as many bombers to flak as I destroy planes on ground. Against night raids it seems to be almost is effective, unlike Japanese flak, which rarely can hit anything at night, unless Allied bombers come at low altitude.

The only bright spot is Allied aviation still being afraid to attack Japanese airbases in daylight.

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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/28/2011 3:28:28 PM   
Cannonfodder


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Fighters on escort duty are weak: period. I use Oscars IIAs and soon IIbs for that duty with mediocre pilots. If I need to take down the opposition I fly sweeps with Zero's or Tojo's. Try mixing sweeps and escort fighters.

I have to say that we use a houserule (max. man. band, so in 1943 we almost never go above 20k in setting) so that might be a factor too!

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Post #: 557
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 5/29/2011 1:10:55 AM   
John 3rd


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I've got an increasing High Altitude house rule as the war progresses. Seems to be working so far...


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RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/10/2011 10:50:56 AM   
FatR

 

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Well, we're playing with no HR. I find that as long as you ignore exact altitude numbers and treat the bands as abstract representations of altitude performance it all works just fine (except for extreme altitude intercepts, which don't seem to incur penalties against bombers).

Since the last post I've seen A6M4s in combat, they are good, but not amazing. In fact, recent air battles over Schwebo, which was overtaken by Allied troops in early February and which bigred tries to turn into a forward base, saw more success by older planes like A6M2 and P-40K than by A6M4 and Spitfires. Undoubtely, what squadron gets a lucky break and what doesn't plays a big role. Overall, thanks to Japanese numerical superiority over the cluster of their airbases, I've achieved about 2:1 kill ratio, which I'm willing to take.

However, otherwise the last week were full of...


Foiled Plans

It is February 6th, and China is proving to be a harder nut to crack than I hoped. In point (1) my main force failed to achieve a breakthrough. Initial river crossing by an armored spearhead met only support Chinese units and routed them, but this did not preclude a river-crossing attack by my infantry against Chinese infantry that still moved in the hex. I've failed to dislodge them. Two deliberate attacks later resulted in hugely disproportional losses.

This doesn't mean that my plans are entirely foiled. I'm about to drive about 1700 AV into Liuchow at point (2), leaving the Chinese roadblock isolated behind. As the main Chinese army there tried (and failed) to retake Kweilin, still sitting there, I'm confident of success.

But this is not enough to finish China off. So, I was forced to move Southern Army's divisions that started marching back to Burma to point (3), where 2nd Tank has failed to overrun the Chinese roadblock. They will march on Kweyang and overrun the Chinese MRL from behind. This means that the operation against Little Andaman is postponed, which I don't like at all. But China is a far more important strategic goal.

Note that various Chinese units behind my line are only remnants and battered units. They cannot hope to take any base, I believe.

Meanwhile, IJN went to take Cocos Island. KB barely missed the Allied reiforcement convoy for it, with only one troop-loaded transport sunk by long-ranging flying boats. And the warning that I might be bringing too few guys proved correct. Allies have 100th Indian Brigade there and enough flak to make ground attacks even by massed Betties from Batavia and Oosthafen, costly and ineffective. Due to my bombardment TFs not doing what they were ordered to do in most strange ways, my hope of nuking the defenders did not come true. With only a brigade and a regiment, I don't have enough guys, and a big Allied fleet including battleships was just spotted moving around southwestern corner of Australia. Might be an accident or a decoy, even most likely, as I-15 sank two xAPs and neither carried troops. But this makes me uneasy anyway, and in combination with factors above I'm not going to waste my naval aviation in a probably futile task of softening Allied troops on Cocos. Allies can keep it for a moment. I'm not giving up on it, though, even an isolated 4E-capable Allied base in 20 hexes from Palembang is a bad thing. And it is too far away to isolated with LBA. Not preparing a division for Cocos was a really, really big mistake on my part, and one that is probably going to bite me in the ass hard, because I see no real opportunity to strangle the defenders and with 30k troop limit this island will be impossible to retake once Bigred lands more troops.




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< Message edited by FatR -- 6/10/2011 10:52:03 AM >

(in reply to John 3rd)
Post #: 559
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/10/2011 11:06:13 AM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Heroic CA Takao

During my most recent attempt to naval bombard Little Andaman, DD Naganami struck a mine and was cripped. To my big surprise, CA Takao broke off from the main TF to escort her. In following phases two short ranged American subs took shot at Takao (after she already expended her DCs pounding yet another sub at Little Andaman) and scored three torpedo hits. I was expecting to see the cruiser go under before the end of replay... but when the replay was over, I found that damage did not exceed 50 in any category. Three cheers for the damage control crews! As Takao is probably the most accomplished surface combatant in IJN, hero of battles of Car Nicobar and Southern Andamans, where she sank CA Salt Lake City and heavily contributed to sinking of BB Royal Sovereign, CA Cornwall and CL Enterprise, seeing this ship destroyed would have been demoralizing. Now Takao is under repair at Singapore and hopefully will return to action soon, to kick more Allied ass.




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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 560
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/18/2011 2:03:55 PM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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It's unfortunate that I lack time for regular report, because things are getting interesting lately.


China, early February of 1942

Japanese forces have left two significant Chinese armies marked as (1) and (2) on the map to rot in pockets and took Liuchow on February 10. Industry was completely obliterated, which is bad, as my Chinese supply tends to pool in Shanghai, instead of flowing to the front. But at least Chinese no longer can use it. I intend to pocket the Chinese army in Kweilin (that should have been defending Liuchow...) as well.

In addition, Southern Army detachment is about to leave the mountains and to arrive at the back of Chinese MRL. Forces detached to Bigred to stop it were defeated or failed to arrive (there is a six-unit group on the road to Chungking, but it failed to march the last hex it needed to march to bottle up my column).

Bigred tries to annoy me to death by regularly interdicting roads with remnant units, but this does not accomplish much.

Chinese also attempted to storm Sian with over 3000 AV in two groups. Both failed to scratch level 6 forts in river-crossing shock attacks. I don't have enough AV to counterattack in Sian or on the road to it, but without big Chinese reinforcements the region is pretty safe.




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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 561
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/18/2011 2:31:26 PM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Allied Attempts to Save China

Besides airlifting a fair number of troops into China proper (although I believe I've demolished most of them in the battle for Kungming, Bigred goes for Burma again. I made a mistake not placing any forward guard, and a significant Allied force have crossed Irrawaddy between Magwe and Mandalay. I mistook their vanguard for a whole force, and three of my tank regiment were smashed as a result, while an Allied motorized brigade entered Magwe and got soundly defeated in return. The biggest problems are lack of supply and lack of air support for the expanded Japanese air force in Burma. I'm transporting more airfield units to Burma, but they are still on the way from Home Islands.

Still, preliminary count shows no more than 1400 Allied AV in Burma. This is most likely not enough to overrun my current force. Moreover, I have 5 elite divisions preparing for Little Andaman at Georgetown. As the Little Andaman operation is delayed. I'm going to sealift them into Burma and smash the Allied forces yet again.

Meanwhile, Allies are apparently attempting to land on Ramree Island, although this is suspicious, as recon does not report any troops on the ground and when one of Allied xAPs was damaged by Helens, there were no troop losses. Speaking of air attacks, they were quite costly, as landing was covered by Lightnings and Corsairs, and several of my groups were flying without cover. Besides the above-mentioned xAP, my aviators managed to mildly damage CLs Sent Loius (1 torp) and Hawkins (1 bomb). In case the landing is true, after all, tomorrow I'm hitting Ramree as hard as my LBA can. One of IJN battle squadrons is also on the way.






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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 562
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/18/2011 2:40:22 PM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Suspicious Activity Around Perth

I'm not sending KB-1 to Andamans, as Allied activity along the western coast of Australia, as reported by my subs, remains ominous. Subs also reap their share of victims. I-15 had missed CL Cleveland, but I-166 hit CVE Prince William, causing an ammo explosion. She's still afloat (there were no plane losses on ground), but hopefully will sink before making Perth. I was inclined to write off these conspicous movements as as diversion, but CVE sighting indicates a serious effort on Allied part. They still don't have carrier air to spare at the moment, although by the end of the month they should have enough to make KB separation unwise. Although if Bigred knows what he's doing, he'll abandon it now.

Also, I find his lack of attention to Air ASW incomprehensible. My subs have free reign almost everywhere.




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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 563
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/19/2011 10:47:15 AM   
FatR

 

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Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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February 11th, 1942: LBA Battle and 7000th Plane Loss

Large air raids against Allied convoys took place across Arakan coast at Broome and at Cocos Island today. Only at Cocos Allied fighters (I hoped the airfield was still nonfunctional, it wasn't) managed to repel the attackers entirely, but everywhere the cost was heavy. At Broome the entire Allied convoy of 1 AM and 4 xAKs was sunk by Netties. Around Arakan, Allies left only a couple small ships at Ramree, with most of their TFs retreating to Akyab and Cox's Bazaar, so half of sweeps hit the air. Yet, a 60-plane Helen raid on Akyab got through without losses... and ran into thunderstorm weather. Only CL Caradoc (2 bombs) and one xAK were damaged. Later smaller Helen groups attacked Allied ships at Cox's Bazaar, and, at significant cost to themselves, sank a xAKL and damaged two large xAPs, one heavily, with troop losses.

Meanwhile Allied heavies tried to attack Magwe from high altitide, but there were only 22 of them, so Nicks and Tonies left on CAP managed to mostly repel the attack, shooting down between 5 and 8 of them. The bombing was mostly innacurate.

Losses for the day:




Can't say I'm happy (Allies have so many xAKs, that sinking a few won't make a difference, and alot of xAPs too), but could have been worse. My airgroups in Burma need rest, so I'm not sure if I should continue raids tomorrow.



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< Message edited by FatR -- 6/19/2011 10:50:52 AM >

(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 564
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/22/2011 5:55:27 PM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Aftermath of Allied Landings at Arakan

Bad weather continued to foil my air operations against Allied landing fleets. Overall, I believe, combined air and sub action resulted in destruction of 3 xAPs, 2 xAKs and 1 xAKL, light-to-moderate damage to 3 CLs and some other ships, plus some troop losses on board. My SCTF based around Haruna tried to hunt for Allied ships on the night of February 14th, but only 2 xAKLs failed to retreat in time. Considering loss of about 60 planes in these operations, this result is rather underwhelming. Allies also succeeded of landing troops to Ramree.

On the bright side, Allies have failed to interfere with my major convoys to Rangoon during the same days. Only one bomber raid was successfully launched from Little Andaman, and only succeeded at lightly damaging a single AK. Allied fighters were busy at Arakan and I used this to partially suppress Little Andaman's airfield. Two divisions and an air flotilla are about to unload at Rangoon, and an Allied air attack on port was repelled with significant losses to both Liberator and sweeping Corsairs/Lightnings.

(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 565
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/26/2011 2:18:51 PM   
FatR

 

Posts: 2516
Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
Status: offline
February 17, 1943: Attack of the Light Brigade(s) at Magwe

On 17th Allied attempted a shock attack supplemented by a paradrop at Magwe. But despite their sweeping efforts Japanese CAP remained up by the paradrop phase (maybe Bigred expected that my planes will be on attack, like in previous days, but on 17th I decided to give them a breather, particularly as my strike aviation was bled dry already), and you can see below how many AAA units I have there. Supple also apparently failed them. Almost 30 Skytrains went down, and the attack was absolutely shredded:

Ground combat at Magwe (57,47)
Allied Shock attack
Attacking force 19810 troops, 248 guns, 860 vehicles, Assault Value = 975
Defending force 27229 troops, 545 guns, 619 vehicles, Assault Value = 602
Allied adjusted assault: 140
Japanese adjusted defense: 805
Allied assault odds: 1 to 5 (fort level 5)

Combat modifiers
Defender: forts(+)
Attacker: shock(+), disruption(-), supply(-)

Japanese ground losses:
190 casualties reported
Squads: 0 destroyed, 8 disabled
Non Combat: 15 destroyed, 50 disabled
Engineers: 0 destroyed, 14 disabled
Vehicles lost 36 (16 destroyed, 20 disabled)

Allied ground losses:
3019 casualties reported
Squads: 116 destroyed, 161 disabled
Non Combat: 171 destroyed, 158 disabled
Engineers: 16 destroyed, 26 disabled
Guns lost 53 (28 destroyed, 25 disabled)
Vehicles lost 288 (164 destroyed, 124 disabled)

Assaulting units:
73rd Motorised Brigade
19th Indian Division
50th Tank Brigade
84th Indian Brigade
254th Armoured Brigade
77th Chindit Bde /2
25th Indian Mountain Gun Regiment
86th Coast AA Regiment
21st Indian Mountain Gun Regiment
14th Indian Light AA Regiment

Defending units:
8th Tank Regiment
4th Tank Regiment
14th Tank Regiment
78th Infantry Regiment
20th Recon Regiment
2nd RTA Division
7th Field AF Construction Battalion
60th JNAF AF Unit
9th Ind. Engineer Regiment
17th JAAF AF Bn
49th Field AA Battalion
36th JAAF AF Bn
16th Field AA Machinecannon Company
20th AA Regiment
31st Road Const Co
22nd Field AA Machinecannon Company
28th Field AA Machinecannon Company
31st Field AA Battalion
26th Fld AA Machinecannon Company
Southern Army
25th Air Defense AA Regiment
88th JAAF AF Bn
11th RF Gun Battalion
23rd Field AA Machinecannon Company
25th JAAF AF Bn
42nd Ind.AA Gun Co
26th Air Defense AA Regiment
20th Ind. Mtn Gun Battalion
15th JAAF Base Force
26th Field Artillery Regiment
11th Air Defense AA Regiment
3rd Ind. Mountain Gun Regiment
45th Road Const Co
44th Field AA Battalion
19th Field AA Machinecannon Company
22nd Air Defense AA Regiment
25th Field AA Machinecannon Company
11th JAAF AF Bn

Well, with that the commitment of my entire 5-division reserve to Burma seems like an overkill, but what's done is done, the last contingent is unloading already.


Air Slaughter

In air operations against Allied TFs still hanging around Arakan I wasn't so lucky, though. Weather repeatedly undermined my efforts, with lesser contingents from Mandalay flying and getting slaughtered, and my main air force at Magwe staying home. Two Helen sentai and much-suffering Saeki Kokutai (on Kates) were practically annihilated. And fighter battles over Cox's Bazaar also weren't in my favor. Moreover, Bigred has figured out my habit of trying to achieve local air superiority over a hex, rather than escorting bombers, and laid some traps using expendable TFs and LRCAP, which cost me not a few Betties, Emilies and Vals. Overall I might have lost over 200 planes in recent battles in this theatre. This resembles the operation I-Go - while I managed to sink some ships (although nothing valuable, just xAKs and slow xAPs), my losses are prohibitive...


Suspicious Moves Near the Perimeter and Japanese Reaction - Naval Battles of Townsville and Ndeni

Meanwhile Allied light forces moved into action in SWPac, transporting troops to Ndeni, and my subs detected what appeared to be a large troop convoy moving along the coast of Northern Australia. KB-1 moved into action from Soerabaja in hopes of intercepting the latter, and the convoy was destroyed, but not only it proved to be small (although indeed troop-loaded), KB planes refused to attack it. However, torpedo bombers from Timor and Waingapoe sank the large xAP Republic and xAK Marpeesa, that formed the convoy, sending a couple hundreds of squads under, and detached cruisers intercepted and sank PG Charleston and 2 Australian AMs, that escorted it.

Meanwhile, my cruiser squadron based on Marshalls moved to investigate what Allies are up to at Ndeni. The outcome of the two-part battle was satisfying.

Day Time Surface Combat, near Ndeni at 120,143, Range 25,000 Yards

Japanese Ships
CA Aoba
CA Kinugasa, Shell hits 1
CL Natori, Shell hits 1
DD Shigure, Shell hits 2
DD Uranami
DD Amagiri
DD Ushio, Shell hits 1

Allied Ships
APD Colhoun, Shell hits 14, and is sunk
APD McKean, Shell hits 16, and is sunk
APD Stringham, Shell hits 10, and is sunk
APD Waters, Shell hits 2
DD Humphreys, Shell hits 19, and is sunk
DD Rathburne, Shell hits 18, and is sunk

These APDs actually are pretty useful for Allies... I'm happy seeing them take their forward bases at cost like this. A number of empty LCTs and LCMs also was sunk by gunfire and Betties flying from Tulagi, but these are replenishable.

Unfortunately, commander of my SCTF was too engrossed with chasing down Allied ships to retreat by daytime. Fortunately, no Allied bombers apparently covered this operation, so it remained unharmed.

(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 566
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/26/2011 4:47:09 PM   
FatR

 

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Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
Status: offline
Although were not at end of a game month, I have some time right now, so, let's explore the current stare of Japanese production at the moment.

Industry Screen on February 18th

To my big surprise, pilot training requirements did not incease significantly in 1943, so I'm still slowly accumulating HI. This is a living in debth, though, as oil/fuel situation continues to deteriorate, with over 100k loss over the last month, due to increase in fleet operations. Bigred commits a big mistake by using his aviation for tactical ground support, instead of committing everything to attempt taking out Magwe oilfields. Even then, and even with perpective of taking 140 more oil production in Northern China in a few months, the economic situation fundamentally remains unsolvable at the current level of expenditure. I just hope I'll be able to keep things in a state of slow decline until late autumn of 1943, when most of my naval program will be completed and I'll be able to start shutting down naval shipyards and HI centers.

As about current availability to the industry, Home Islands have fuel for 59 days, oil for 81 days and resources for 105 days.

The resource situation is great, on the other hand. I already have enough excess to not expend fuel by transporting resources from Ocean/Nauru. I hope that eventual total conquest of China will greatly reduce the need to haul resources from DEI as well.






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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 567
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/26/2011 5:02:18 PM   
FatR

 

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Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Aircraft Production

As you can see, I'm not strict about streamlining production to a single type of plane in each category. This is not only a way of reducing expenses related to factory conversions or to use engines that are already present in stockpiles or relatively readily avaiable (although these are relevant factors a well). IMO, Japanese can't cover all necessary combat roles with a single fighter at this stage. Looking at Army fighters, Shoki is the best overall, but Hien can fly over Spitfires and Corsairs and get the initial bounce, while Shoki can't. And both of them lack range for escort missions, unlike Ki-43. I also deploy Ki-43s in lower echelons of my layered air formations, so that they draw enemy low, while being relatively able to survive dives, due to their high maneurability.

Scen 70 adds a similar situation to IJN side as well. A6M4 has superior stats overall, but A6M5 can fly higher, escort to longer distances and is carrier-capable. I'm concentrating more on A6M5, because its factories will later upgrade to A6M8.

I'm not buiding that many Jills because the first model is not radically better than Kate. Once B6N2 reaches production in about two more months, I intend to build over a hundred per month. However, I'm putting effort into bringing Judies to the frontline earlier. A 500-kg bomb instead of a 250-kg one is a big deal.






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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 568
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/26/2011 5:19:17 PM   
John 3rd


Posts: 11037
Joined: 9/8/2005
From: La Salle, Colorado
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Lew and I are in mid-January 1943 and I've already got my Judies producing. I'm using the first model of Jill but really look forward to the second model!

As for fighters:
Army--Tojo (180), Tony (just started 130), and Oscar IIa (52)
Navy--A6M5 (200) and A6M4 (130). George is not too far away...


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(in reply to FatR)
Post #: 569
RE: Ocean of Blood. FatR (J) vs. yubari (A) - no yubari... - 6/26/2011 5:19:41 PM   
FatR

 

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Joined: 10/23/2009
From: St.Petersburg, Russia
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Engine Production

I have a slight deficit of Mitsubishi Ha-33 engines, that will become huge once A6M8 hits the production lines, so I intend to add another 100 units or so right now. Nakajima Ha-45 also needs radical expanding, George is not far away now, and I intend to build it in large quantities. I still don't have enough Nakajima Ha-34 to build as many Helens as I need. Otherwise everything is fine. I'm allowing Mitsubishi Ha-32 to pile up because, as I mentioned before, it is carried by Jills, Francices, and Emily transports late in the war, and I will want more Betties too, once G4M2 becomes available.




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Post #: 570
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