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Where are all the troops?

 
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Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 5:39:06 AM   
mantrain

 

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Why is the continental USA based with so few troops and a good percentage of them are engineers in Dec '41? The draft began in 1940. Where are all the troops? Are we to fight the Nipponse with engineer units?
Also, there seem to be a lot of Canadians. Did the USA draw so many Canadians to fight in the Pacific. OVeral I thought they were part of the UK command and slated for european theatre.
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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 5:59:10 AM   
Rainer

 

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The game tries to re-create what happened.
US troops available are based on very detailled research.
If you think you need a different setup you may have chosen the wrong game.
War in the Pacific/AE gives you what was available to the commanders at that time.
Have a look at what is in the pipeline. Soon you will be looking for sufficient transports to bring them all to the front.
Well, in 1943 that is.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 6:53:21 AM   
Shellshock


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain

Why is the continental USA based with so few troops and a good percentage of them are engineers in Dec '41? The draft began in 1940. Where are all the troops? Are we to fight the Nipponse with engineer units?
Also, there seem to be a lot of Canadians. Did the USA draw so many Canadians to fight in the Pacific. OVeral I thought they were part of the UK command and slated for european theatre.


The vast majority of the US Army was sent to fight in Europe. The game only gives you land units that were stationed on the West Coast, or were slated by the Joint Chiefs for the fight against Japan. That means that (as happened historically) you'll be outnumbered by the Japanese in divisional strength for most of the game. Most of the Canadian units in the game are restricted to continental Canada. It's when the US Navy so breaks down the Imperial Navy that the US (and Allies) can decide at it what weak point where it's divisions will fight that you gain the advantage. The idea is to so break Japan's ability to move it's army around the Pacific to meet all the threats, that it's advantage in ground pounders is nullified. Not to mention that most of the Imperial Japanese Army will be stuck in China for the entire game.

Besides, you get the WHOLE Marine Corps eventually.

< Message edited by Shellshock -- 5/18/2013 6:57:17 AM >

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 6:58:59 AM   
jmalter

 

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Germany First!

Those engr LCUs are essential, you've got to build bases & establish supply-lines in advance of the arrival of more land- & air-combat power. You're fighting the same war that confronted the Allies - 'orrid initial defeats, & not nearly enough of anything with which to stem the tide.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:05:36 AM   
mantrain

 

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Well the Marine Corp seems small now. But I did not know that US troops were fewer in number than the Japanese in that theatre. I just thought that the USA was so large. I knew about "europe first." Looking at the first land campaign between the USA and Japan, Guadalcanal, I would think the Japanese were having problems with numbers of troops too, otherwise why didn't they just take it outright with 50,000 + troops. If the Japanese had committed that many men they would have defeated the USA there (presuming they would supply them). Seems like the USA struggled so much in that campaign with numbers too -- marines barely hanging on until the Army arrived. I dont quite understand. If you look at the european theatre, how many US troops were committed to Operation Torch? Probably 150,000 USA troops,and there were the Brits and French too, on one relative place on the map. It doesn't seem the same numbers were there at all in the Pacific. I doubt there were ever in excess of 75,000 US ground troops involved in any one campaign in the Pacific. Didn't the USA lose that many troops in the BAttle of the Bulge alone?

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:25:44 AM   
Shellshock


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain

Well the Marine Corp seems small now. But I did not know that US troops were fewer in number than the Japanese in that theatre. I just thought that the USA was so large. I knew about "europe first." Looking at the first land campaign between the USA and Japan, Guadalcanal, I would think the Japanese were having problems with numbers of troops too, otherwise why didn't they just take it outright with 50,000 + troops. If the Japanese had committed that many men they would have defeated the USA there (presuming they would supply them). Seems like the USA struggled so much in that campaign with numbers too -- marines barely hanging on until the Army arrived. I dont quite understand. If you look at the european theatre, how many US troops were committed to Operation Torch? Probably 150,000 USA troops,and there were the Brits and French too, on one relative place on the map. It doesn't seem the same numbers were there at all in the Pacific. I doubt there were ever in excess of 75,000 US ground troops involved in any one campaign in the Pacific. Didn't the USA lose that many troops in the BAttle of the Bulge alone?


The Japanese defeat at Guadalcanal was more about Japanese perceptions and logistics than numbers. The Japanese didn't take the threat there seriously enough at first and they were preoccupied with the drive on Port Moresby at the time and so committed forces there piecemeal. Logistics were a hampering factor as well. There was only so much sealift on hand to move Japanese troops to Guadalcanal which was at the extreme end of a long supply tether. If Japan could have tapped every division in Asia to counter the Marines on the Solomons, they could have won, but logistically (and politically) that was not possible. Eventually,with time the US Marine Corps will grow into a formidable force of five divisions. But you begin the war understrength with just a few Marine regiments, plus Marine garrison troops. Even with the draft passed in 1940, the US was still way behind the curve in terms of gearing for war up by the time of Pearl Harbor.

The Allied Powers agreed that Germany was the greatest threat and had to be defeated first. Eventually a formula was settled on in which 30% of Allied resources would go to the Pacific and 70% to Europe until Germany was defeated. The U.S. Air Force was scrupulous about this agreement, allocating almost precisely 30% of its squadrons to the Pacific. However, the latest model aircraft almost always went to Europe first. The U.S. Army was a little more flexible; in the early days of the war, when Japan was on the rampage in the Pacific, more Army troops went to the Pacific than to Europe. Later the allocation of divisions switched to the 70/30 ratio. The U.S. Navy never took the 70/30 formula very seriously, partly because the Army adamantly refused to accept Marine divisions for service in Europe, and partly because the Pacific was a naval theater while Europe was a continental theater. At some point the US Navy advantage in numbers becomes so crushing that you can pretty much land your division wherever Japan is weakest.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:29:04 AM   
JeffK


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Can I suggest you read a good history of the campaign.

The book thread should have some good suggestions.

Much better than asking questions which might not garner good answers.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:36:06 AM   
mantrain

 

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Interesting points. But what political capital do the Japanese have to expend by drawing troops from elsewhere? As a military dictatorship how is political capital for the Japanese lost? Hell, when they lost four carriers at Midway, no one bothered to care because the dictatorship kept it hush hush. And USA ground troops only grew to five Divisions? A Marine division must be large because all of Belgium in WW2 had 10 divisions. Didn't hitler attack Russia with 3 million men, some 100 divisions?

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:45:51 AM   
wdolson

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shellshock
The Japanese defeat at Guadalcanal was more about Japanese perceptions and logistics than numbers. The Japanese didn't take the threat there seriously enough at first and they were preoccupied with the drive on Port Moresby at the time and so committed forces there piecemeal. Logistics were a hampering factor as well. There was only so much sealift on hand to move Japanese troops to Guadalcanal which was at the extreme end of a long supply tether. If Japan could have tapped every division in Asia to counter the Marines on the Solomons, they could have won, but logistically (and politically) that was not possible. Eventually,with time the US Marine Corps will grow into a formidable force of five divisions. But you begin the war understrength with just a few Marine regiments, plus Marine garrison troops. Even with the draft passed in 1940, the US was still way behind the curve in terms of gearing for war up by the time of Pearl Harbor.

The Allied Powers agreed that Germany was the greatest threat and had to be defeated first. Eventually a formula was settled on in which 30% of Allied resources would go to the Pacific and 70% to Europe until Germany was defeated. The U.S. Air Force was scrupulous about this agreement, allocating almost precisely 30% of its squadrons to the Pacific. However, the latest model aircraft almost always went to Europe first. The U.S. Army was a little more flexible; in the early days of the war, when Japan was on the rampage in the Pacific, more Army troops went to the Pacific than to Europe. Later the allocation of divisions switched to the 70/30 ratio. The U.S. Navy never took the 70/30 formula very seriously, partly because the Army adamantly refused to accept Marine divisions for service in Europe, and partly because the Pacific was a naval theater while Europe was a continental theater. At some point the US Navy advantage in numbers becomes so crushing that you can pretty much land your division wherever Japan is weakest.


The nature of the war in Europe meant the USN was going to play a secondary role there for the most part. The USN could also make a significant difference in the Pacific.

The agreement worked out in the early days of the war was that more resources would go to the Pacific in the early going until the Japanese advance was pretty much checked, then resources would shift to Europe and the Med. Up until Midway, the US did send a lot more to the Pacific than to fight Germany. After Midway, it was clear the Japanese had been dealt a crippling blow to their most potent offensive weapon. Especially for long range invasions. The losses at Midway pretty much guaranteed the safety of the Hawaiian Islands.

Back to the original question, the game only depicts forces that were on map during the game. Any forces that were never on the part of the map of the US shown and were never deployed anywhere on the map do not exist. I believe some units that trained in the west, but were always dedicated for fighting Germany are also not represented.

Canada has forces on map at the start, but they were fully mobilized in December 41. As someone else pointed out, very few Canadian units can ever leave North America.

The various engineering units are necessary to build up bases for training air units and filling out land units. If you ship out all the engineering units that can be "bought out" with PP, you will find you don't have enough support in the continental US to train up air units by the time the flood starts. By 1943, you will probably have 1/2 to 2/3 of US air units training for deployment unless you want to be reckless and deploy untrained units.

AE is a long haul game. The slogan for the Allied player is "it gets better". You start off with horrid resources to fight with, but over time, you can build a massive force that is unbeatable.

Bill

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 7:59:59 AM   
Bo Rearguard


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain

Interesting points. But what political capital do the Japanese have to expend by drawing troops from elsewhere? As a military dictatorship how is political capital for the Japanese lost? Hell, when they lost four carriers at Midway, no one bothered to care because the dictatorship kept it hush hush. And USA ground troops only grew to five Divisions? A Marine division must be large because all of Belgium in WW2 had 10 divisions. Didn't hitler attack Russia with 3 million men, some 100 divisions?


Japan may have been a dictatorship, but it was one with some deep flaws. None greater than the one between the Army and Navy. Each service claimed its own share of the shipping pool, with no effort to coordinate shipping, until it was much too late. Each service planned its own operations, and extensive negotiations were required to secure any assistance from one service for the operations carried out by the other. Aircraft and weapons factories were often divided into Army and Navy sections, with the doors between the two literally locked and barred. Each hid their failures and defeats from the other. It was almost as if the war was fought by two uneasy and distrustful allies rather than sister services of a single nation. The reason that a Japanese 1942 invasion of Australia was out of the question was because the Army felt the war in China was more important and didn't wish to allocate resources. Not much the Imperial Navy could do about that. If anything the game glosses over these differences.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 8:23:33 AM   
mantrain

 

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Fascinating the rift between the two services. And wasn't it said that Yamamoto had to fear for his life due to Army threats? Still, they had to work together. Again, Guadalcanal was the perfect example.There was the Imperial Navy, giving hell down the slot, and landing/supporting the Japanese army on the island.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 11:55:54 AM   
Bo Rearguard


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain

It doesn't seem the same numbers were there at all in the Pacific. I doubt there were ever in excess of 75,000 US ground troops involved in any one campaign in the Pacific. Didn't the USA lose that many troops in the BAttle of the Bulge alone?


The US landings by the Sixth Army on Luzon involved 175,000 men. The subsequent land campaign, involving ten divisions, against a Japanese Army of 260,000 serving under General Yamashita, was the second largest conducted by the US Army in the Second World War, after the one in Northwestern Europe.

Of course, that's in 1944 and '45. You won't be seeing most of those divisions for a long while.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 3:37:02 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Bo Rearguard

Japan may have been a dictatorship, but it was one with some deep flaws. None greater than the one between the Army and Navy. Each service claimed its own share of the shipping pool, with no effort to coordinate shipping, until it was much too late. Each service planned its own operations, and extensive negotiations were required to secure any assistance from one service for the operations carried out by the other. Aircraft and weapons factories were often divided into Army and Navy sections, with the doors between the two literally locked and barred. Each hid their failures and defeats from the other ...


On top of all of the above, the two services hated one another.

According to Shattered Sword, the Imperial Army considered the Imperial Navy to be arrogant elitists and the Navy thought the Army were uneducated bumpkins.

"Both parties were largely correct in their mutual assesements." (p. 439).

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 4:01:34 PM   
Justus2


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joe D.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Bo Rearguard

Japan may have been a dictatorship, but it was one with some deep flaws. None greater than the one between the Army and Navy. Each service claimed its own share of the shipping pool, with no effort to coordinate shipping, until it was much too late. Each service planned its own operations, and extensive negotiations were required to secure any assistance from one service for the operations carried out by the other. Aircraft and weapons factories were often divided into Army and Navy sections, with the doors between the two literally locked and barred. Each hid their failures and defeats from the other ...


On top of all of the above, the two services hated one another.

According to Shattered Sword, the Imperial Army considered the Imperial Navy to be arrogant elitists and the Navy thought the Army were uneducated bumpkins.

"Both parties were largely correct in their mutual assesements." (p. 439).


Additionally, they approached the war with very different strategic perspectives. The Army, naturally, was focused on continental powers, and most feared the USSR. They had been deeply embroiled in the 'China Problem' for a decade, and wanted to focus on subduing China, and defending against the USSR (or possibly even invading when they could sense vulnerability). They saw the resources of Manchuria, and eventually Siberia, as the answer to Japan's economic needs.

The Navy, meanwhile, had 'grown up' as proteges of the British, their allies from WWI (several of the IJN BBs were British designed or even built), and therefore focused on control of the sea. They were focused control of the seas (the IJN academy was a big proponent of Mahan), and their main fear was the US. They felt the dependence on oil in a more visceral way than the Army did, and so they were focused on the "Go South" strategy to seize the resources from the DEI. The Army didn't like the strategy to begin with, and allocated only the minimum forces needed, and in some ways the IJN's early victories justified the IJA with saying they didn't need to provide any more...



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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 4:07:26 PM   
steverodgers80

 

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Remember that you have to include all of the air force and navy for both sides of the US when looking at manpower and the size of the US army. In 1941 the US had only just begun to mobilize and it took time to train and equip all of those men, besides the need to build up all the infrastructure to do those tasks. Bases had to be built, factories had to be started, leaders had to be trained before they could start training recruits. A great book on the subject is " A war to be won"

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 8:54:57 PM   
mantrain

 

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quote:

Home of the Chance-Vought Corsair, F4U
The best fighter-bomber of World War II


I beg to differ. There was the P 51 mustang, which I have no doubt you have given much thought to in your selection of the Corsair, which is maybe a step above in elegance.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 11:35:04 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain


quote:

Home of the Chance-Vought Corsair, F4U
The best fighter-bomber of World War II


I beg to differ. There was the P 51 mustang, which I have no doubt you have given much thought to in your selection of the Corsair, which is maybe a step above in elegance.


Sure, the sleek P-51 was a more graceful looking bird than the inverted gull-winged Corsair, but the liquid-cooled Merlin engine of the Mustang made it very vulnerable to ground fire, whereas the air-cooled twin Wasps of the Corsair made it -- and its closest competition, the Thunderbolt -- more survivable in the fighter-bomber role.

Further, the Corsair was (eventually) carrier-capable.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/18/2013 11:46:38 PM   
JeffK


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And the Corsair carried a lot more ordnance than the P51, maybe the Mustang would be in the running for the best long range escort fighter.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/19/2013 12:18:19 AM   
wdolson

 

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For ground attack the P-47 and Corsair were probably about tied. Both carried similar loads. As a low altitude fighter, the Corsair had the edge on the P-47. At higher altitudes the P-47 with the turbo supercharger had much better performance. The P-47 also had two extra guns, though the P-47 should have been upgunned to 20mm. The 20mm was better suited to Europe's air environment. 0.50 cal were sufficient for the Pacific.

The Corsair was carrier capable, but the Hellcat initially won out for carrier use because it had much better low speed characteristics and was easier to land on a carrier. Performance-wise the Hellcat was about 95% of the Corsair, which was enough for most of the Pacific war. When the kamikaze threat pushed the Navy to put even more fighters on carriers, the supply of Hellcats started to run out and they had to turn to Marine Corsairs on carriers.

Even with carrier training the accident rate for carrier based Corsairs was much higher than with Hellcats. They had a higher stall speed which required a hotter approach and the extra energy had to be absorbed by something. Blown tires on landing were common with Corsairs on carriers, even in the Korean war. Airframe damage from hard landings wasn't unknown either. This meant carrier based Hellcat squadrons could put more planes aloft every day.

In the ground attack role Corsairs and Hellcats carried equal loads and performed about the same.

When evaluating a fighter, you always need to also discuss the role. The Allies had many fighters during the war because different planes fulfilled different missions in different ways. Corsairs were not good at high altitude nor did that have long range. Neither were severe drawbacks in the role they filled, but they would have been horrible 8th AF bomber escorts.

As a point defense, low altitude interceptor the Corsair was excellent. In ground attack, it was one of the better fighters, though there were others that were pretty much equal in that role.

Bill

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/19/2013 5:51:18 PM   
mantrain

 

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wdolson, certainly put things into the proper perspective. I have loved both planes since I was a kid, P51/F4u. As a kid I looked at the stats -- which seemed to provide the edge to the P51 in terms of speed especially, combined with range. I think those are the top two stats of a plane, speed and range.
What would happen though if the P51 and F4u were in a dog-fight, given two equally trained pilots? perhaps the results would depend on altitude.
Oh, and when Goering was asked when he knew the war was over his response was 'when I saw the first P 51's over Germany.' Does that not say volumes?
Clearly no other nation in WWll had aircraft to equal either craft. There were the latter day jet and rocket fighters, and if a M 262 happened to have a dog-fight with a P51, the latter may have met its doom. Those aircraft were hardly relevant in their time though.

< Message edited by mantrain -- 5/19/2013 5:52:11 PM >

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/19/2013 10:25:58 PM   
Blackhorse


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mantrain

Well the Marine Corp seems small now. But I did not know that US troops were fewer in number than the Japanese in that theatre. I just thought that the USA was so large. I knew about "europe first." Looking at the first land campaign between the USA and Japan, Guadalcanal, I would think the Japanese were having problems with numbers of troops too, otherwise why didn't they just take it outright with 50,000 + troops. If the Japanese had committed that many men they would have defeated the USA there (presuming they would supply them). Seems like the USA struggled so much in that campaign with numbers too -- marines barely hanging on until the Army arrived. I dont quite understand. If you look at the european theatre, how many US troops were committed to Operation Torch? Probably 150,000 USA troops,and there were the Brits and French too, on one relative place on the map. It doesn't seem the same numbers were there at all in the Pacific. I doubt there were ever in excess of 75,000 US ground troops involved in any one campaign in the Pacific. Didn't the USA lose that many troops in the BAttle of the Bulge alone?


The Marine Corps is small. At the beginning of the war it consisted of only two understrength divisions -- each recently expanded from a brigade. By 1944 it expanded to 6 divisions, but only by eliminating the separate ranger and parachute units, and shutting down every small post, depot, ROTC detachment and recruiting office they could, to scrape together enough men to create the 5th and 6th divisions.

The plan at the start of the war was for the US Army to field 200 divisions. In the event, 98 was the most it ever activated. During the Battle of the Bulge, the last two divisions being trained in the US were shipped to Europe (including one being trained for jungle warfare that had been slated for the Pacific). After that, there was nothing left in the pipeline.

There were many reasons the US Army ended up smaller than planned. One of the most significant, IMHO, is that planners consistently underestimated how many servicemen were needed in "service and support" for an army to deploy and fight across the world's two greatest oceans. The Organization of Ground Combat Troops (1947; Greenfield, Palmer & Wiley) does an excellent job of chronicling the Army's challenge.

Every US Army & Marine Corps formation, battalion-sized or larger, that deployed in the Pacific is included in game. In addition, every US Army division and regiment, and most of the battalions, that trained on the West Coast before shipping off to Europe are also included. What you see on the map is what was actually there.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/19/2013 10:58:57 PM   
Terminus


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The US Army also underestimated how many riflemen they'd need.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/20/2013 12:27:08 AM   
wdolson

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Terminus

The US Army also underestimated how many riflemen they'd need.


And how many replacements they would need. In the latter stages of the Battle of the Bulge Eisenhower authorized feeding black troops into the line which caused a lot of controversy. Those troops served with distinction though. Like the Japanese American RCT, those soldiers had something to prove.

Planners usually start off planning based on past experience. The only other times the US had mobilized in any large scale were the Civil War and WW I. The Civil War was another era and supply lines were short. WW I was the first large scale overseas war for the US, but it had the advantage of plugging into the existing logistical support system for the French and British armies on the continent.

In WW II the US had to build or rebuild logistical systems from scratch to support the pointy end of the spear. Conditions in the Pacific were often very primitive. Noumea was the most built up place in the South Pacific, but it was a back water outpost by the standards of the rest of the world.

Even in Europe that had to contend with infrastructure that was largely destroyed before the Allies got there. It had to be rebuilt or bypassed.

I think one of the strengths of WitP and AE is it gives the player some feel for the logistical support necessary to conduct a war in the Pacific. It's not perfect in that regard, but it does a better job that any other game I've seen.

Bill

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/20/2013 2:47:30 PM   
Terminus


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Yah.

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RE: Where are all the troops? - 5/20/2013 8:58:45 PM   
Symon


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At its peak in March 1945

8,157,400 Total US Army
2,753,500 Army Ground Forces: 1,252,000 divisional, 1,501,500 non-divisional.
2,993,000 Army Services Forces
2,410,900 Army Air Forces: 1,224,000 combat, 1,187,000 support/training/supply


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Yippy Ki Yay

(in reply to Terminus)
Post #: 25
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All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition >> Where are all the troops? Page: [1]
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