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RE: No fleet, no problem...

 
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RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/24/2013 3:55:13 AM   
Nemo121


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I'm going to go into my plans for each theatre in series over the next few days and posts. I'll post the updates for a theatre as I look at the theatre and finish giving my orders. Since that'll take several days the updates will take several days. At the end of that time a full account of the plan should be present and the turn should be ready to send to Damian.

Basic strategic plan:
1. Hold the Kuriles if at all possible through aggressive, resupply efforts utilising the majority of the SS fleet and whatever heavy bombers, medium bombers, floatplanes and transports are available. Expand the landings if at all possible through invading additional islands and provide a focus for Japanese efforts which would be sub-optimal strategically. Build up the Aleutians. Only Dutch Harbour and Attu are occupied. Right now the correct Japanese counter to the invasions of the Kuriles is to ignore the efforts I make to supply the Kuriles from Attu and, instead, mount amphibious invasions of the Aleutians ( which are unoccupied save for Attu). It'd be the far, far cheaper option, it would gain strategic depth and it would isolate Attu --- and if you isolate the base feeding your isolated bases you, in the end, win back the isolated bases for certain. I'm rushing troops to the Aleutians as a result so that I can garrison all these islands. They are undeveloped so to speed unloading and fortification I'm shipping my troops to my own bases in amphibious TFs. I'll lose troops unloading but I'll get them ashore quicker ( given the lack of ports ).

In the longer term I'd like to push in to threaten Hokkaido, pin ground forces and attrit his air force obviously.


2. Pacific
The Pacific is a ghost theatre. There are only about 3 islands ( including Midway ) between Hawaii and New Zealand which have any reasonable garrison on them. The IJN could push through and take everything short of Hawaii with ease if it wanted. Ideally I'd like them to try since any fight in this region would be at the end of a hugely long and expensive to maintain supply line.

I think Damian hasn't taken whatever is left to me because he doesn't want it. I'll wait a fortnight and if he isn't probing aggressively forward in this region it'll be a sign that he's taken what he wants and is either:
a) settling in to fortify or
b) pulling back to spare his logistics and leaving some islands as a buffer zone - if this is the case then I'll advance aggressively ASAP.


3. Oz
Well I don't have the navy to make the leap to Port Moresby or Noumea/Guadalcanal so I'm stuck with trying the western side of PNG via Darwin. The Japanese currently still own Darwin but are in the process of being pushed out by Australian ground forces. By the time they are pushed out I plan to have the naval forces in theatre to push north-eastward through the small island chains towards Davao, closing off the Celebes sea route for oil etc to Japan.

The threat to strategic oil assets will pin major IJA, IJAAF and IJNAF assets in place along Java, southern Borneo etc and allow me access to attrit them under favourable conditions. The requirement to garrison the Phillipines will also act to pin major IJA formations in place in the southern and northern Phillipines.


4. Burma
Ramree seems like a pretty nice place to jump to from Akyab ( I can benefit from LRCAP while I'm establishing a base ) and if I can move rapidly out from Ramree, across the swamps into the Burma mainland proper I can pose a significant threat of cutting off all IJA formations north of Ramree.

I expect that a combination of forces at Ramree pushing on Rangoon and threatening to unleash tanks across the good tank country in central Burma, behind the northern Burma IJA lines should cause Damian to pull back from Northern Burma, opening the road to China at relatively little cost.

From this position I'll just continue to threaten a littoral amphibious campaign down the Western flank of Thailand/Malaysia or the eastern flank of northern Java modeled very much along the lines of what the Soviets were planning along the Norwegian coast if the cold war ever turned hot.

Ideally over time I'll be able to push through into Thailand, attriting his army and cutting off overland routes from Singapore to China. Long term goals will be:
1. to capture Singapore and enable the RN to gain access to the Oil routes to Japan - as well as allowing the RN to continue its littoral amphibious campaign through Thailand and along the southern Chinese coast to Hengchow.
2. to push east from Thailand into China(supported by the RN in the littoral amphibious role as outlined above ), creating improved overland access into China which will allow sufficient supply to flow to enable the basing of Allied bombers into the Hengchow region ( basically, anything coastal in southern or eastern China ).
3. utilising bombers to interdict the oil routes flowing north of the Phillipines.


Overall the moves from Oz and from Burma will aim to create two semi-envelopments.
1. The short pincers at the capital of Thailand projecting airpower into the seas north of Borneo and whatever bases I take which project air power into the seas south of Borneo. This will discomfit but not stop oil flow.
2. The long pincers will project into the Hengchow region cutting off the oil flow north of the Phillipines and into the Davao region, cutting off oil flow south of the Phillipines.


5. China
The Chinese will simply make as much trouble as their supplies allow in an effort to pin and attrit the Japanese while building experience and AV. The only absolutely crucial areas will be:
a. Keeping Hengchow in Chinese hands ( which will be difficult if it appears to be a threat, which is why I won't use it for pinprick raids... I don't want to draw attention to it until it can host significant aerial forces )
b) Keeping Chinese troops on the Vietnamese border so as to help the British in their push eastwards from Thailand.

In the long term the Chinese and British would be seeking to push into Kwantung and down into Korea in order to provide two directions from which the final amphibious invasion could be launched.... I don't expect it to come to that though as I'm aiming at his economy mainly with the various efforts to prevent oil being transported home combined with efforts to attrit his forces such that he cannot meet all his commitments.


I think that it'll take 12 to 18 months to push through to Shanghai from the current positions on the Indian border so that's the current maximum duration I see before it is clear this game is over competitively. Economic collapse etc may hasten this date significantly and obviously I'll be trying for that also.


I'm considering whether or not I'll set myself the task of playing the game without using CVs for combat operations at all. That would mean using them to transport planes was fine but they couldn't fly any missions at all. I may compromise and just allow them to fly defensive missions ( CAP ). That would allow them to cover amphibious invasions in 1943... I'm undecided though, it seems like a bit of an easy option to allow myself the use of CVs defensively. It'd be more of a challenge to just forbid their offensive or defensive use at all and focus on winning this one without the use of any CVs in a combat role from this moment forward. I'll think about it.... Obviously I wouldn't say this to Damian as he is dangerous enough as it is. It'd just be something to increase the challenge for myself.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to witpqs)
Post #: 31
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/24/2013 4:10:28 AM   
Nemo121


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witpqs,

Ah, thanks, that clarifies a lot. As far as I know we're using the latest beta + some experimental beta. I just agreed with whatever Damian wanted to use since I'm comfortable he just wants to test at the bleeding edge and not gain one-sided advantage.

Olorin,
I don't think Damian will switch to the defensive. The last time he gave me 1 week's grace when I took over a PBEM I invaded Burma and started a chain reaction which moved him from thinking about how he would capture India to bemoaning his broken air force within about 3 months of gametime.

No, he will keep the pressure on everywhere possible - except maybe in the Pacific where his SLOCs are just too extended IMO.

He can TRY to impose his will here and a simple accounting of assets would convince you that he should succeed in whatever he tries. My view, however, is that initiative is often a matter of opinion and less to do with what is than what we fear to be. I'm willing to bet that in a test of wills Damian will blink first irrespective of the objective reality of the situation.

It'll be interesting, to me, to see whether he bases his decisions on actual assessed risk and situation or on his fears and projections.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to witpqs)
Post #: 32
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/24/2013 7:05:40 PM   
Nemo121


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Well I lost the will to live after sorting out CONUSA and the north Pacific ( and a little bit of India ) so I just sent the turn off.

Actions:
1. Forces in the north pacific are running like hell. My CVs are within 8 hexes of his so I figure if I run for Dutch Harbour he'll sprint east also and nail me. Fuel is also low so my CVs at sprint have a max range of about 20 hexes and Dutch Harbour is exactly 20 hexes away. So if I sprinted east my CVs would be stuck with no fuel at Dutch Harbour and easy pickings. Sooooo I can't run away. Instead I'm sending a few things east to make it look like I'm heading that way and sending all my most valuable shipping at cruise speed north towards the Pole. My plan is to hide out there around Nome in the bad weather for a few days before cruising south-eastwards once KB retires.

I don't have strength, speed won't work, I don't have endurance but I do have guile. Let's see if that's enough to save the 2 CVs and pretty much the rest of the surviving USN which Damian has trapped in the north.


2. Some ground attacks in Oz to see what I'm facing as well as some recon to get a sense of what lies in my path on the way to Darwin.

3. Lots of loading of amphibious TFs in India. I've also spent 4,000 PPs buying units out of India so that I can have some mass behind this initial punch.

4. Bombardment attacks and bombing raids in China to try to get a sense of the enemy's strengths. Once i know where he's strong I can focus on hitting him where he isn't and threatening to dislocate his strength.


So tomorrow should see heavy USN losses either way (Far too many damaged and out of fuel ships litter the seas in the north) but a better sense of the land war situation elsewhere.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to Nemo121)
Post #: 33
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/24/2013 7:15:01 PM   
JocMeister

 

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I´ll keep my fingers crossed for the CVs!

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Post #: 34
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/28/2013 1:25:56 PM   
Nemo121


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Well the CVs survived as did most of the other shipping. I lost a CA and DD to flooding from previous damage but everything else survived. Some of my SAG TFs managed to intercept some of KB's TFs in night-time surface action but while the USN DDs traded shots with IJN BBs, CAs, DDs and even CV surface armament neither side hit the other. I'm happy though since I feel that these surface actions will help prevent Damian from sprinting eastward towards Dutch Harbour.

I thought Damian would attack Attu Island so I moved every fighter I had in range into the island ( all 66 of them ) and waited. Sure enough a nice manageable strike of about 75 IJNAAF aircraft ( 30+ zeroes and 20+ Kates plus 20 or so Vals ) came in. My fighters were a mix of (mostly) P-40Es, a dozen P-38Es, F4F3s and F4F4s and even some Kittyhawks from Canada and due to superior positioning and the fact that the Zeroes were escorting managed to down 40 enemy planes, comprising about 18 Zeroes and 10 or so each of Kates and Vals. The remaining Vals and Kates hit nothing.

I lost 1 P40E in return. So 40:1, not a bad exchange rate, especially as I'm killing the IJNAFs best aviators.


Attu is currently only a Level 2 airfield held by 1 Regt of troops. There are NO troops at all ( not even construction troops ) anywhere between Attu Island and Dutch Harbour and I'm intensely worried Damian will just land on those and isolate Attu. Therefore I've ordered a lot of emergency loading of convoys in CONUSA and PH in spite of the fact that I have VERY few xAPs and relatively few xAKs left. Altogether I currently have about 25,000 men and slightly over 90,000 tons of supplies heading for the Aleutians. My plan is to occupy each of the islands there and build them up to support supply airlift and SLOC protection missions. Attu will be built up to support as many transports as possible flying supplies in plus APDs and DDs operating in FT TFs.

I've also gone through CONUSA creating a pilot training programme. The USAAF, USN and USMC reserves comprised less than 100 properly trained pilots in total. I've graduated the trained ones into frontline squadrons and rotated the partly trained ones into training squadrons. I've also designated every squadron not on the front lines for training purposes. This hadn't previously been done.

E.g. In the Eastern US there were 2 P-39 squadrons and 4 squadrons of B-18s with 2 planes each. Each of the B-18 squadrons had just two pilots and those pilots weren't training. I filled each squadron with replacements up to the max of 25 pilots and began training. End result, in 2 months time I'll have 100 fully trained bomber pilots with ground bombing skill of 70 to send to the front. This was repeated in every city in CONUSA. I don't think there was a single squadron filled out with pilots and training. I've filled them all out with hundreds of pilots and set them all to training.

Any squadrons which weren't restricted are making their way to the Aleutians via Canada. I'm using several Stranraer and Kingfisher units to provide heavy ASW protection along the portion of coast from Vancouver to Prince Rupert as I'm planning to ship all the supplies, troops etc to the Aleutians via Prince Rupert ( as that's the shortest SLOC there ). Ground units are already making their way north using the railways. Escorts, support ships etc are all making for Vancouver and Prince Rupert so that I can match escorts with transports and get a more rational escort system than was previously apparent.

Today I will begin flying supplies into the Kuriles. I only have 30 planes tasked to the mission now but that'll rise to 300+ per day over the next week. Today these planes should fly 66 tons of supplies in. SST Argonaut is one day away with some 72 tons of supplies and the first of my fleet boats is loading up on supplies ( 24 tons per fleet boat with 25 boats tasked to the mission should yield a total of 600 tons per submarine supply run... not all the subs are currently in place but they're on their way to the theatre and will be in action soon enough.

My plan is to create a sea bridge delivering 600 tons per week and an air bridge delivering 3,600 tons per week. In total that should allow me to support both of the islands taken in the Kuriles.

I sent a DD into Hakodate overnight where it bagged a PB and several LBs. This was a DD which was some 500 miles west of KB and so didn't have the option of sprinting east to escape. Since its death was assured I tried to gain something for its loss. It survived without a scratch and so will return to my holdings in the Kuriles from where it will raid again once fuel and targets appear.


Central and Southern Pacific:
Well there's very little here and likely to be very little here until I actually stabilise the situation in the north, which is critical. If Damian pushes he'll take whatever he wants and I'll have to use the


Oz:
LOTS of troops are just sitting around in the south and east guarding against invasion. My preference is to use them offensively to make Damian fear invasion. Consequently they are all marching north to Darwin to push the Japanese out. They will then form the nucleus of my forces pushing into northern PNG and the soft underbelly of the Phillipines.


China:
I thin I've found a weak spot at the junction of the Japanese northern and southern forces. The position here appears largely stalemated but by accepting weakness through reducing my defences along two major axes below the level that can hold I can concentrate sufficient mass to be able to act offensively. If Damian notices and exploits the weakness before I strike then I'll have to waste this offensive force in holding his attacks - but will lose ground and position. If Damian doesn't notice in time and I land my blow first then he'll have to fritter away his concentration of mass in reacting to mine. It is a risk but not a gamble.


Burma:
Approximately 40,000 men are currently loaded on ships and making their way to a jumping off point near Akyab. I plan to land them at Ramree ASAP and then bring in as large a force as possible as rapidly as possible by shuttling my forces back and forth to Calcutta and Akyab where, again, there appear to be huge concentrations of force deployed into defensive positions. I count some 4,000 AV available in India. Much of this is restricted but I believe 2,000 AV can be freed for offensive work fairly rapidly. The vast majority will go via Ramree while a smaller portion will move across the land border from India I'll post a map of Burma to show just how I plan to do this but basically my concept is to land at Ramree and make a major show of pushing along the trails from Ramree inland whilst also making a show of pushing south from Akyab along the trails to link up with Ramree. This will draw a strong Japanese response with, ideally, two or more divisions opposing this thrust. Then I'll land at the non-base hex 46 miles south of Ramree with infantry to guard the lines of supply into the NEXT hex south--- a lovely open terrain hex just ideal for the amphibious landing and unleashing of a rapid Operational Manoeuvre Group comprised of 600+ AV of tanks and mechanised troops into the enemy's operational depth, seeking to move inland to take the Japanese base 138 miles away.

The beauty of this is that it doesn't rely on my ground forces to blow a hole in the IJA land in Burma ( which can be difficult in jungle terrain ) whilst also solving the problem of how to supply a non-base hex landing. It also allows me to salvage an operational victory if the Operational Manoeuvre Group is defeated in its strategic objective ( the drive on Prome ). How? Simple, if it cannot take Prome by itself it will simply move north-eastward instead, cutting off whatever IJA divisions are facing off against my Ramree invasion. This will force them to retreat out of the jungle due to the dislocation of their lines of supply and will force Japan to cede me coastal Burma, creating a new defensive line along the north-south river running through Central Burma.

That new defensive line will lie in open terrain, the sort of terrain a tank-heavy army with superior artillery support dreams of. So, even the OMG's strategic failure ( in acute terms ) gains an operational victory which sets the stage for a slightly slower but still decisive strategic victory ( cutting across the river and racing eastward to isolate any IJA forces in northern Burma - since Damian is too good a player to risk that he will withdraw from northern Burma instead. If he does this I win back 210 Oil centres and deliver a crippling blow to the Japanese economy.

So, really, so long as the Ramree landing holds it is a win/win/win position for me where even failure should be able to be turned into the foundation of longer term victory. Plus its a nice plan which utilises manoeuvre to draw the enemy into a position whereby they expose their flank and allow an OMG to be launched into their operational depth. Its a nice, simple plan which relies on cunning more than force and that's always more satisfying.

We'll soon see how it works out. I'd say it'll be about a week before all of my forces are ready.

< Message edited by Nemo121 -- 4/28/2013 1:27:13 PM >


_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to JocMeister)
Post #: 35
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/28/2013 1:54:10 PM   
Nemo121


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I should also mention that in order to protect Attu from him getting overly frisky I took every ACM in the place as well as a few CMs which were being used to escort supply convoys etc and have dumped their mines at Attu. Right now Attu has about 280 mines protecting it. It should be up to 400-500 mines in a week. If he tries to bombard or invade it that should help significantly. Well, that and the fact that I used my entire allocation of PT boats to create about 20 of them at Attu last turn ... it is, after all, the crucial spot on the entire map right now.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to Nemo121)
Post #: 36
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/28/2013 2:23:46 PM   
Captain Cruft


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A map or two would be nice ...

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Post #: 37
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/28/2013 4:48:38 PM   
Nemo121


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Swept Magwe today to highlight the need for Damian to pin fighters there whenever I go for Ramree. We lost a roughly even number of planes, about 13 or 14 each.

A nice attack went in against an IJA division holding the line south of Darwin. I trashed about 1 Regt and will try again tomorrow. It'll break in 2, perhaps 3 days.

Elsewhere there was very little action except for a naval bombardment of Attu by BBs and CAs detached from KB. Unfortunately it seems that as part of a slightly chaotic upgrade process whereby Damian upgraded to J1 and I ran the turn under J2 the PTs which I created under J2 disappeared. The end result was that my PT ambush never happened as the PTs vanished into the thin air of the computer gremlins ;-). I lost about 40 planes on the ground but it cost Damian the SAG escorting KB as that will have to head back to Japan for resupply.

This does mean though that KB won't be pushing all the way to Dutch Harbour as he cannot risk pushing that far east without significant surface combat assets. I've rerouted my forces directly to Dutch Harbour accordingly.

Right now Damian is on the cusp of sticking around Attu too long. He is too good a player to do that just to chase a few cripples so if he's staying around Attu it is either with a view to:
1. preventing its use to support the Kuriles ( meaning he is rushing a counter-invasion force there ).
2. preventing reinforcement of Attu ( meaning he is rushing to invade Attu )
3. isolating Attu and supporting invasions of the other unoccupied Aleutians.

Either way it looks to me as though there's a high likelihood that amphibious TFs will appear somewhere in the Aleutians soon. I'm therefore going to keep my surface combat assets at Dutch Harbour in order to be able to commit them to surface combat once any amphibious TFs show up.

Nothing much else to report. A sub bounced a non-detonating torpedo off Kongo and a few other near misses but nothing significant. Elsewhere the flow of forces to my weak points and attempts to find his continue.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to Captain Cruft)
Post #: 38
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 2:19:29 AM   
Nemo121


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Another day down and some progress in Oz....

I cleared and took Daly Waters which now gives me an airbase within range of Darwin to begin interdicting whatever evacuation Damian puts in place. My forces have also attrited the IJA division there down to about 1/3rd of its size. Land warfare appears to be working better than ever in this latest version.

On the Carnarvon front enemy BBs and CVs have appeared. I wasn't expecting them at all, imagining that most of them must be up north with KB. I'm assuming these are CVLs and suchlike but they are escorted by fast BBs and enough CAs to level the airfield. In return I'll send in some cruisers, try to interdict any efforts to rescue the IJA division I have trapped here and generally just invite him to waste fuel, sorties and effort in rescuing the unrescuable.


On the Burma front forces are moving into staging positions. I'm about a week away from launching.


In the Aleutians KB sticks around for yet another day. It seems more and more likely he is making a move for the Aleutians themselves. I have no option but to accept his initial thrust and seek to riposte as I don't have sufficient power to make a hit of my own.

In China I'm gathering more and more force for my schwerpunkt. It looks like I might be able to mass about 3,000 AV in open terrain vs 7 IJA units. I'm hopeful that this will allow me to break those units and create a gap in his lines.

In other news a Dutch sub planted a torpedo into an enemy CL which is a nice little bonus.


Overall I'm still trying to mobilise all the shipping sitting around in bases behind the lines in Oz and India so that they can contribute whilst trying desperately to get enough shipping into the US side of the Pacific. I'm sending xAPs and TKs from India to the US since losses to US shipping have been so cataclysmic. I've never seen the USN and its transport fleet as badly damaged as I found them in this game.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Nemo121 -- 4/30/2013 2:20:05 AM >


_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to Nemo121)
Post #: 39
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 3:10:41 AM   
princep01

 

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Admiral Nemo, might I humbly request that you game date label your postings? 

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Post #: 40
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 5:09:30 AM   
Capt. Harlock


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quote:

I've never seen the USN and its transport fleet as badly damaged as I found them in this game.


From your previous post, I'm assuming that most of the transports are damaged rather than sunk. Have you an estimate of how much yard time your fleet is going to need?

_____________________________

Civil war? What does that mean? Is there any foreign war? Isn't every war fought between men, between brothers?

--Victor Hugo

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Post #: 41
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 8:23:35 AM   
Galahad78

 

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Glad to see you back, Nemo.

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Post #: 42
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 1:26:05 PM   
Nemo121


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Harlock,

Would 'twere so. No, the APs and xAPs are almost all sunk and a good portion of the xAKs are sunk also. Someone should ask Damian for an account of the losses in his thread since he has Tracker. It'd take too long to count the hundreds of xAKs lost. My point was that I've never seen a transport fleet so damaged ( through the sinking of so many ships ) at this stage of the war.


So, August 21st.

I sent a Cruiser TF into Carnarvon since I thought Damian might be trying to use his CVs to cover the extraction of troops. They found nothing and were hit the next day by Kates flying from CVs about 200 miles off the Australian coast. So, I'm tentatively identifying the CV TF off Oz as comprising CVLs and maybe some CVEs due to the lack of Vals.

Elsewhere KB is STILL hanging around Attu. I'm going to begin flying reinforcements into Attu itself now as he is obviously looking at invading it and the surrounding islands. One couldn't justify the commitment of KB to this area for this long otherwise.

In other news 60 Zeroes swept Shumishiri-Jima and faced approximately 30 Allied fighters ( mostly P-40Es ). I believe Japanese losses exceeded Allied losses which is good to see. I'll rotate another squadron in to replace the P40-E unit once Attu island opens for business again.


Elsewhere: China should be ready to see a relatively significant land campaign open up in 2 to 3 days. Before that I plan to push the Japanese out of Myitkina and then at the turn of the month I'll land at Ramree.

The landings at Ramree will probably coincide with the Japanese attempt to invade the Aleutians/Attu island which should make for a few exciting days.

When I get the orders turn I'll post a map of Burma highlighting proposed landing sites, OMG objectives etc and the predicted IJA defensive line along the river to which, I believe, they will withdraw if the OMG is successful.

In other news: You know the coast from Rangoon down to northern Malaysia really does bear a striking resemblance to the norwegian coast.

_____________________________

John Dillworth: "I had GreyJoy check my spelling and he said it was fine."
Well, that's that settled then.

(in reply to Galahad78)
Post #: 43
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 2:40:45 PM   
Nemo121


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I got curious so here's a full accounting of my ship losses.

Total Allied ships lost: 543.
Total IJN ships lost: 60

Sunk Allied ships vs left ( in brackets )
4 CVs (2)
1 CVL (0)
0 CVE (2)
5 BBs (10 incl 6 USN)
11 CAs (10, incl 8 USN)
19 CLs (11 incl 8 USN)
2 CLAAs (3 incl 2 USN)
63 DDs ( 86 incl 40 USN)
1 DE (1)
3 APD (4 USN)
82 xAP ( 92 incl approx 20 USN )
22 AP ( 4, none USN )
39 xAKL
94 xAK
2 AKV (3 AKV, none USN)
6 AK ( 10 AK all USN)
9 AO ( 15 incl 7 USN)
19 TK ( 74 incl 20 USN)
5 SS
5 CM (5 all in India)
7 DM ( 1 USN)
9 DMS (4 USN)

So, basically, the USN ability to conduct amphibious landings with infantry is reduced by over 80%. Right now I can land a bit over 1 division of troops amphibiously using xAPs and APs in the eastern pacific. I have about 40 DDs which is insufficient to provide escorts for the BBs, CA TFs, CV TFs and for surface action groups. The losses in CMs, DMs ( about 90%) and DMS ( over 70% ) are particularly grievous and, as can be seen, the tankers and AOs have also taken a massive beating. Losses of xAKs are well over 200, I didn't bother counting them.

What's left is sufficient but the problem is that about 2/3rds of the tankers, 3/4 of the xAPs and a similar portion of the xAKs are in Oz or India where they simply aren't of any use to the US forces. I can fix this given three months to sail them around Africa and south America into the Pacific but during those three months I have 4 divisions of troops trapped in the north, no garrisons in most of the Central and Southern Pacific island bases and a very limited ability to rectify either situation with the troops in hand.

Ah well, I wanted a challenge, I shouldn't complain that I've got one



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Post #: 44
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 5:15:19 PM   
Wirraway_Ace


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Nemo121


In China I'm gathering more and more force for my schwerpunkt. It looks like I might be able to mass about 3,000 AV in open terrain vs 7 IJA units. I'm hopeful that this will allow me to break those units and create a gap in his lines.


Nemo,

I just wanted to give you a hard time for using "schwerpunkt". How would describe the planned operations within the rubric of Deep Battle. :-)

< Message edited by Wirraway_Ace -- 4/30/2013 5:40:55 PM >

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Post #: 45
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 5:40:16 PM   
LoBaron


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Love the AAR title! Wreck some, Nemo!

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Post #: 46
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 6:32:18 PM   
witpqs


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quote:

Someone should ask Damian for an account of the losses in his thread since he has Tracker. It'd take too long to count the hundreds of xAKs lost.

Sorry - why is it you don't have Tracker?

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Post #: 47
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 10:52:31 PM   
Nemo121


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Wirraway_Ace,
LOL! Yeah, Triandafilov is turning in his grave as we speak ;-). What can I say, I'm just the craaazzzzyyy sort of guy who likes to mix and match my nomenclature


witpqs,
Well, it is a philosophical issue really. I think Tracker is an excellent tool for presenting data as is the sunk ships tool and various other utilities. However I believe that since the tactical is subordinate to the operational and the operational to the strategic the KEY layer to keep an eye on is the strategic layer (or national policy objective layer if you have a meta-narrative in which that layer is active ). I don't believe in getting down into the nitty gritty. E.g. I don't have any idea about the main gun layouts of USN CAs or CLs or which DDs have 4 inch guns vs 5 inch guns or what the FlAK values of the various ships are. I just generally assume that a CA is a CA is a CA, a CL is a CL is a CL and so on and so forth.

My focus is all about manoeuvre and fire creating dislocation which results in strategically important outcomes. Tracker focuses on the technical-tactical characteristics of units, the minutiae of tracking sigint across the map and the specifics of convoys plowing certain routes. I tend to view all of that as irrelevant detail at the strategic level. I tend to concern myself with whether a base has "enough or not enough" supply/AV support/naval support etc. I also don't bother with intel reports from subsidiary theatres most of the time. I view them as potential distractions from the theatre of decision ( in most of my games I don't even bother to read sigint etc ).


E.g. for the Ramree operation I don't have any tabulation of what forces I'm sending. I know I'm sending "enough" infantry ( about 1.5 to 2.5 divisions, I'm not sure precisely how much since 1.5 is enough to take the empty base and so is 2.5 divisions and their role after Ramree is taken is to demonstrate a threat which must be countered. Again 1.5 divisions is enough for this, 2.5 divisions would simply be a bonus. ), "enough" AV support and "enough" engineers ( about 300 engineer equivalents). I'm also sending "enough" AAA - 2 to 4 units, I forget how many and "enough" coastal defence (1 to 2 units ).

Once "enough" is available I'm happy to launch the invasion. I don't need to know precisely how much is present. Given this viewpoint I feel that Tracker would simply add lots of data but little information which would impact on my decision-making so I don't use it.

E.g. 2@ How many planes will I commit to resupplying Shimushiri-jima? Well, I don't know. I've decided I'm going to commit the uSAAF heavy bombers and medium bombers to the mission as well as my PBY-4/5s. I'm simply going to look through my air units and commit 100% of the heavy and medium bombers and 66% of the PBYs, whatever that number is. This is a major decision point and warrants that commitment. Of course I will assess how much 100% of the heavy and medium bombers and PBYs is. I want to deliver about 600 tons a day by air so if that commitment won't do it then I'll have to bring in additional planes but I won't clutter my planning by doing a count. My sense is that what I have available is "enough" and that's good enough for my planning purposes.

I do understand that that sort of approach would strike some as slapdash and horrify them but I view it as concentrating on the bigger picture and leaving the unimportant details to my staff .

My view is that if you can't describe all of your plans across the entire map in a 5 or 6 sentence paragraph in sufficient detail to pick up the game again after 6 months away then you're probably getting bogged down at layers below the strategic and are unlikely to have the laser-sharp focus on the strategic layer necessary for truly good play, IMO.

For example, my paragraph would be:
Try to hold the Kuriles islands while building up the Aleutians in preparation for a push into Hokkaido next spring. Hold him by the belt buckly in the rest of the Pacific pushing forward opportunistically if he retreats from his far-flung holdings. Conduct littoral amphibious ops a la Warsaw Pact vs Norway along the Burmese and Malaysian coastline. Clear Oz and push north to Davao using FT Tfs and LBA to cover hops. In China pin his forces in place and keep Hengchow in my hands ready for transformation into a major bomber base once UK forces create a proper overland route into China via Thailand. Cut off the Japanese economy's supply of oil via a Cannae-like double-envelopment with the short pincer being Singapore to Southern Borneo and the long pincer being Hengchow to the Davao.

At that stage I expect Damian to surrender. If he doesn't then I'd add another two lines. "Continue the land push along the island chain from Formosa to Japan while also clearing Korea via land campaign. Once both prongs are in position threaten landings from Korea, the island chain leading from Formosa and Hokkaido and, if he doesn't surrender then, actually follow through with the landings."


So, nothing against Tracker at all. I just think it tends to distract people from what's important.

< Message edited by Nemo121 -- 4/30/2013 11:02:31 PM >


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Post #: 48
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 4/30/2013 11:09:18 PM   
witpqs


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That's cool. My perspective is that Tracker saves me time to do things I would do anyway. Some things are necessary actions for any strategy to execute well; I mean simple things like know when the troops arrive where I've sent them, know when new troops/ships/air groups arrive in-game, coordinating getting squads upgraded, etc. I look first at SigInt for that day only to see if anything of significance has popped up ("Kaga is right there!"), then go to Alerts and look at just that day's alerts sorted by alert type. That way I can catch all the arrivals, reached destinations, finished repairs and so in minimum time. There is loads of other 'good stuff' in Tracker that I only rarely look at.

That ships sunk tool is for the AAR (and only occasionally used), not a planning tool for me.

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Post #: 49
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 2:29:51 AM   
crsutton


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Good luck, you are picking up quite a mess but as long as auto-victory is not looming you should be fine-in a while...Basically, you are really in a similar position that the Allies were in 12/41, just a bit later. But the flood of reinforcements will come. If your opponent is as good as he looks on paper then you will have a good chance to play into 1946. That appeals to me.

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Post #: 50
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 7:09:13 AM   
obvert


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Although the plan to hold the Kuriles outposts is bold, isn't it a bit optimistic? Where will you base 100% of the Allied 4E bomber force to resupply it? What happens when he just builds up the bases nearby and throws 200 fighters over those islands daily on LR CAP?

This is 42 so I presume the Japanese can force their will should they choose to do so, especially so close to home. Naval bombardments will suck more supply out than you can throw in and eventually wreck the troops there, especially mixed with daily milkruns from the air. If he wants to ruin those bases he can. The question is whether he will.



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Post #: 51
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 9:44:01 PM   
Nemo121


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Well it is optimistic but surely it is better to try to do something difficult than to throw one's hands in the air and claim it to be impossible without even trying.

Basing bombers: I'll build up the Aleutian islands.

What happens when he commits 200 fighters a day? Simple, I'll take advantage of this in Burma, China and Oz.

Naval bombardments: Great, he'll run into mines, attrit his navy and all the while I'll be advancing in safety using my littoral amphibious campaigns free from being troubled by the ships committed here.

Some serve by being victorious. Some serve by dieing but taking a lot of killing. If all the Kuriles units can do is take a lot of killing then so be it. That outcome is acceptable to me so long as I can take advantage elsewhere.


In other news I've assembled a Chinese force which I think might have a chance of attriting an IJA stack. My force comprises some 87,000 men ( the stacking limit in an open hex is about 90,000 according to Damian ) and I've launched an attack today to test out the IJA defences. My force masses about 2,400 AV. He has about 900 AV but about 400 of that is tanks which makes me nervous. I have another 800 AV on the way to replace worn out units following the first attack. We'll see how it goes. If he shifts forces to counter this I plan to sidestep him and move the stack elsewhere to attack other weak points in the northern regions. I've spent about 60 PP buying new leaders for the largest units on the Chinese side so with 60 PP I figure I've boosted my adjusted AV by about 10% in total. Now we'll see if that was worth it.

Around Burma I am sending the first TFs into Akyab under heavy LRCAP from Akyab and Calcutta. Let's begin attriting his Netty force in the region. If they don't fly then I can gather my forces under the CAP of Akyab, see about sending an FT TF from Akyab into Ramree and then land the rest of the troops once Ramree is taken. I've tried creating FT TFs in this game but I'm having no luck in them being able to pick up troops. I have a CL and DD at Akyab but they won't pick up troops. I also have the ML Abdiel which, historically, acted as a fast transport. Does anyone know if that'll work in-game?

Elsewhere he is trying to take Carnarvon, I'm trying to push forces up to resist him and I'm generally just trying to organise my forces. I have 2 CL and 1 DD available throughout all of India while Oz - which is a backwater - is absolutely awash in BBs and DDs. It is all rather confusing but will be sorted out soon enough.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Nemo121 -- 5/1/2013 9:49:13 PM >


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Post #: 52
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 10:10:50 PM   
jeffk3510


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Glad to see you back and active. Looking forward, as always, to reading anything you put together here.



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Post #: 53
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 10:18:55 PM   
Canoerebel


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Unlike WitP, Allied destroyers and light cruisers don't have any cargo capacity to carry cargo or troops. For fast transport missions, you need APD (some other classes might be able to participate - perhaps some of the CM and AMC, though I'm not positive). Of course, cruisers and destroyers can act as escorts in FT TFs.

Edited to add "Allied." I have no idea if Japanese DDs or CLs have cargo capacity.

< Message edited by Canoerebel -- 5/1/2013 10:19:49 PM >

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Post #: 54
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 10:39:09 PM   
Cribtop


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Most IJN CL, DD and even bigger stuff has capacity and can join FT TF. Allies require APDs in most cases.

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Post #: 55
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 10:52:00 PM   
Nemo121


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Well I have a grand total of about 4 APD and they're on the wrong side of the ocean. I think I'll try the CM Abdiel for the Ramree run and use the 100+ xAKs as bait in the meantime.

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Post #: 56
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 11:15:24 PM   
DW

 

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quote:

LOL! Yeah, Triandafilov is turning in his grave as we speak ;-).



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Post #: 57
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 11:29:35 PM   
Cribtop


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As CR states, I think a few other Allied classes are capable. Some AMCs, maybe Abdiel, etc. Check for a cargo capacity stat.

Also, I think some DDs can be converted to APD.

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Post #: 58
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/1/2013 11:42:39 PM   
Nemo121


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Aye, some of the AMCs have cargo capacity but they're too slow and will go in with the main fleet as torpedo sumps.

As to DD conversions... If I wait even 1 more week Damian will close off the Ramree option. I've taught him to anticipate aggressive exploitation of even the slightest opening and so I am certain he is currently in the midst of converting his position from one where openings were allowed since Floyd was on the back foot to one where he is using every means at his disposal ( including air transportation of fragments ) to garrison bases in his rear and to take bases he's bypassed.

I need to strike before he can close off the opportunity and that means going now... even though that means my total RN covering force comprises 2 CLs and a DD . It is challenging but fun though as this really must be what it is like to take over mid-war when the previous commander in a theatre eats his own revolver.... admittedly usually at the behest his zampolit and the not so friendly men from the NKVD.

Also... a word of appreciation for what may be the only forum on the planet where Triandafilov gets to be the recognised punchline of a joke

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Post #: 59
RE: No fleet, no problem... - 5/2/2013 12:45:28 AM   
obvert


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quote:

Well it is optimistic but surely it is better to try to do something difficult than to throw one's hands in the air and claim it to be impossible without even trying.

Basing bombers: I'll build up the Aleutian islands.

What happens when he commits 200 fighters a day? Simple, I'll take advantage of this in Burma, China and Oz.

Naval bombardments: Great, he'll run into mines, attrit his navy and all the while I'll be advancing in safety using my littoral amphibious campaigns free from being troubled by the ships committed here.

Some serve by being victorious. Some serve by dieing but taking a lot of killing. If all the Kuriles units can do is take a lot of killing then so be it. That outcome is acceptable to me so long as I can take advantage elsewhere.


It all sounds like a no-lose situation for the Allies. Oh, wait, I forgot, it is! Sorry.

Aside from the irony, you've taken on a bad position, and no amount of work will save the Aleutians if he wants them. Sure, you can do some things elsewhere during the same timeframe he is retaking those islands, but you won't take advantage of 200 fighters in the Kuriles because those are all restricted units he wouldn't use in another theater. Mines aren't going to stop bombardments, but they may injure a DD or two, very close to his shipyards. It only takes one TF to run bombardments, and that means the rest of the IJN can make sure your 'littoral' invasions are not quite as safe as you'd like.

The propaganda seems like most of the plan here, when in fact it's most likely that if your opponent plays well, this should be a tough year and you'll really have to build slowly toward an eventual superiority of force in 44. It's great to have a plan, but really, not every move will offer you a brilliant counter.

If you were taking up the other side, you'd most likely be pretty confident you could give the Allies a good fight to the end, right? So what are your opponents best counters to the strategies you've proposed?



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