From: Alberta, Canada
The question is how much will I lose if I stick my neck out to early?
Less then if you let him build up?
In my second PBEM, I'm now playing the Allies. My opponent suggested I try the Allies to get a sense of how weak they are at start, he thought it would make me a better Japanese player. I tend to agree. In my own experience, I wouldn't sweat the Allied strength in the DEI too much. Really the only force that can cause you trouble are the American CV's. You'll take your lumps in surface engagements in the DEI, but I'm sure that establishing your perimeter as quickly as possible will offset this and your CV losses. Since it's unlikely you'll be going out too far now, I'd risk more to prevent any chance of an Allied buildup he can support with his CV's too close to anything important.
I agree about Billiton, no airfield yet, but I'd get started on it right away. If he ends up concerned over it, it could prevent him hitting you where you don't want him to? I'm trying to put myself in your shoes, losing three CV's early how would I react? I think I'd be aggressive, because he'll probably expect you to be a little timid now and that may lead to overconfidence on his part. You may catch him trying to get cute and if you support yourself adequately I see him getting whacked a few times. You're surface forces are a real strength, I'd use them now while I can and welcome any chance of nailing his inferior forces.
I just believe now is not the time to get conservative, it does nothing but help your opponent turn a tactical victory at PH into a strategic one by slowing you down even further by being risk adverse.
Luck is the residue of design - John Milton
Don't mistake lack of talent for genius - Peter Steele (Type O Negative)