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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy

 
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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 8/12/2009 5:09:21 AM   
Zorachus99


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets


quote:

ORIGINAL: Orm

quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets


quote:

ORIGINAL: morgil

Just read through this old thread and got a few pointers...

In the start of the game, Italy should focus on defending against a French or CW DOW, that would enable them to put 4 corps into Italy or Albania.
This is easily done with a unit in Tirana, Palermo/Syracuse and stuffing the rest on the French border.
Imagine youre going for an early Greece with Italy, only to have the french walk across the border, align Yougoslavia, and then knock out Vienna, Bratislava and Trieste just for fun.
Heavily on the French border will also divert French units from the front against Germany.
Watching the US entry, should give you a good inclination on when its "safe" to send a TRS to pick up your units i Ethiopia, but only send one at the time, as the brits are known to gamble over such a sweet prize.

As Italy you would want to join the fun asap, for the brotherly love from Germany, but you would want to delay it as much as possible to avoid the tougher "love" of the CW fleet, and US entry. If the WAllies make obvious mistakes, like undefended french border, Malta and/or Gibraltar, you hop to it regardless of the Senates mumblings.

You would also very much like to align Yougoslavia youreself, by taking out Greece, but I'm not sure that the benefits to that outweighs the downsides.
Consider US entering the war, and going for a quick kill of Italy, they will accieve it. Then they look at the map, all the invasion forces available is in Italian Coast, and umm the dragon has more soft underbelly, that leads to Bulgaria, and 3 more hexes to the oilfields in Romania.
It is usually better to just kill of Price Paul right away.



As the German player there is nothing I would rather see than France committing 6 or so land units to the Italian front. If things got desperate for Italy, I'd just rail move a garrison (or two) into Milan and let France chew on those for a while.

I had this discussion recently with Peter about setting up the French units, and I am quite firm in my opinion that France should look to its own defenses first. Once Paris falls, all those French units in Italy will go away. Now if Germany attacks the USSR in 1939, that's another story, ...


As Germany I have on a few occasions when France lightly defended the Italian border ordered Italy to attack into France. Germany then reinforces the attack. With the mountain line breached you can begin the move towards Paris from the south. I have even captured Paris from the south when the German main offencive was stopped.

If the mountain line is breached early Germany/Italy has alot easier to conquer France if they prefer than over Vichy.

Oh, I agree that France has to defend the Italian border.

What I do not agree with is putting sufficient French troops along the border to attack in the mountains on, say, 2 Italian corps defending the passes. The farther the French go into Italy, the farther they are from supporting the very serious attack by Germany through Belgium.


The Classic Italian blunder hasn't been discussed in this case.

Allow 4 CW or French units into Italy, and if they are not ZOC, the Allies align Yugo. This should be an AI consideration. Otherwise, Italy doesn't need to garrison the France border at all.

Secondarily, the chance to run the cav into Turin / Genoa to blow up factories is mighty satisfying; though less useful.

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Post #: 241
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 8/12/2009 9:27:30 AM   
Froonp


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Zorachus99
Secondarily, the chance to run the cav into Turin / Genoa to blow up factories is mighty satisfying; though less useful.

There is also 1 italian resource here, which represents 25% of all what Italy have access to. This is a tough loss for Italy if France denies access to this resource.

So I would garrison the Alps as an non insane Italian.

(in reply to Zorachus99)
Post #: 242
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 8/12/2009 10:17:59 AM   
BallyJ

 

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Speaking about the French border. It might be worth including the option of deploying the mountain unit alongside the alpine hex side. IF Italy can flip the right unit and put it out of supply.Then an early attack on France can break the mountain defence in southern France. Then the Italian oze can comence.

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Post #: 243
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 8/12/2009 9:58:33 PM   
brian brian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Orm

quote:

ORIGINAL: brian brian

note that on the first two turns, Italy might not actually need the resource from Sardinia. 50% of 3 Production Points creates 2 Build Points just the same as 50% of 4 Production Points. One more excellent detail I would have never realized if Patrice hadn't pointed that out on here once. Now that is assuming Italy will save the Rumanian oil on the first two turns. If Italy wants to use that in production to get 5 Production Points and 3 Build Points on the first turn for interesting builds like laying down a new AMPH, then they will need the Sardinian resource.

I think the AI should pick out Italy's first turn strategy, and THEN select a convoy deployment to match.


As I get it the strategy will modify the probability of the convoy route picked.

If the strategy only decided on the convoy route used you would know what strategy the Italian AI would use just by looking at its convoy setup.


Orm brings up a very good point, and I hope this is something that can somehow be programmed in to the AI. With no fog-of-war at all at such a high strategic level, it is up to a player to do what they can to deceive the enemy. One way to do that is by wasting a few BPs here and there...on the first turn the Euro-Axis each lay down an AMPH? What does this mean for the CW? Maybe a Sea Lion is coming. Or maybe the Axis feels that spending 6 BPs to maybe keep the CW conservative for a little while is worth while.

Another albeit tiny way to do that might be this convoy set-up. For me though, I wouldn't waste any of the 7 Italian CPs because I don't want to build any new ones. So if Italy is planning on invading Algeria on the third impulse of the game, it would be completely pointless to put a CP in the Red Sea to supply East Africa. But if the random selection picks this, the Italian AI would be stuck with it.

For me, if I was invading Algeria right off the bat, the last place I would put a CP would be in the Western Med. I'd bring out supply later in the turn when a TRS (possibly with FTR cover) attempts to land an HQ, or maybe just send out a CP late in the turn. Until then I wouldn't want the extra -1 on the Allied search dice for the probably large naval battle about to occur. I'm not sure that would be very much telegraphing one way or the other with or without a CP in that zone. So I hope the CP set-up options flow from the initial strategy, with a little room for variability, but I don't see them being all that much of an intelligence give-away. The AI could always put one in a zone and return it to base on the first impulse...but the Allies will be taking their cues from other Italian set-up decisions anyway.



It sounds nice to have France attack Italy and activate Yugoslavia. Until the Italian reserves are set up right in front of the French. Any two Italian units in the two non-city border hexes, one each, pretty much stop the whole idea. I might even just leave one empty to try and further entice the Allies to subtract one of their 1939 US entry chits.

(in reply to Orm)
Post #: 244
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/1/2009 7:37:01 PM   
composer99


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Italian Fleet Basing

I would like to do an in-depth analysis of the manner in which the Italian fleet can be divided up and the locations in which it can be based.

Italian Fleet Dispositions

Italian naval assets can be thought to be divided into the following groupings:

Naval Air: Comprised of naval bombers and supporting fighters who are tasked with deployment to sea areas. Naval air assets can accomplish the following tasks:
- Deterrence of enemy deployments by virtue of their presence, either based on land or at sea;
- Destruction enemy naval assets either via air combat or via air-to-sea bombing (naval combat or port attacks);
- Delivery of supplies (when not playing with limited overseas supply);
- Protectection of Italian/allied fleet assets from enemy fleet assets and naval air power.

Operational Fleet: Comprised of Italian fleet assets, in particular BBs and CVs, with supporting CAs and CLs. By virtue of the properties of all ships, the operational fleet(s) can accomplish tasks listed under the escort and picket entries (below); however operational fleets tend to be designated to the following tasks:
- Deterrence of enemy deployments by virtue of their presence, either in port or at sea;
- Destruction of enemy naval assets via surface naval combat, naval air combat or port attacks (the latter two if Italy builds/captures CVs);
- Protection of Italian/allied sealift assets;
- Supporting land campaigns via the delivery of shore bombardment.

Escort Forces: Comprised of fleet assets, usually CAs and CLs, but also ASWs if Italy builds any. Escort forces' tasks are:
- Defence of Italian convoy lines when these are deployed from enemy fleet and submarine assets;
- Delivery of supplies (when not playing with limited overseas supply);
- Protection of Italian/allied sealift assets (unless a robust enemy attack on same is expected, in which case operational fleets are better suited).

Picket Forces: Comprised of fleet assets, usually CAs and CLs. Picket forces' tasks are:
- Establishing of presence in a sea area and/or denial of same to the enemy (when playing with In the Presence of the Enemy);
- Interdiction of sea areas to deter 'casual' use by enemy forces (e.g. unescorted sealift/CV travel into or through the area, unescorted convoy lines) and interception of such targets if they attempt to pass through picketed areas;
- 'Slowing' up enemy forces, via presence or interception, attempting to enter to accomplish enemy operational/strategic objectives;
- Delivery of supplies (when not playing with limited overseas supply);
- Protection of Italian/allied sealift assets (unless a robust enemy attack on same is expected; in which case operational fleets are better suited).

Submarine Forces: Comprised of SUB units. Submarine forces' tasks are:
- Destruction of enemy convoy lines to cut supply (limited overseas supply) or reduce enemy production/lending;
- Interdiction of sea areas to deter 'casual' use by enemy forces (unescorted lift, CVs, convoys) and interception of such 'soft-shelled' targets;
- 'Spotting' for naval air assets (e.g. the sub initiates, naval air flies out via interception, sub is not committed).

Frogman Forces: Comprised of frogman units. Frogman forces' tasks are:
- Deterrence, by their presence in port, of enemy deployment (especially of CVs & sealift) within range of their attack;
- Destruction of enemy fleet assets (especially CVs and sealift);

Sealift: AMPH and TRS. Sealift is used for:
- Delivery of supplies (when playing with limited overseas supply):
- Reorganization;
- Delivery of air units to overseas theatres (note that due to the relative ease of air unit redeployment from Italy to the Meditteranean land theatres where Italy operates this is rarely necessary);
- Delivery of land units to overseas theatres;
- Invasions.

Shipping: Convoy and tanker units. Shipping is used for:
- Delivery of resources/oil to Italy for production/saving;
- Delivery of oil to overseas locations for saving;
- Delivery of sea-borne lending (in the unlikely event, say, of the 'Axis handshake' in the Middle East/Indian Ocean);
- Delivery of supplies (when playing with limited overseas supply).

If anyone else has any suggestions as to how to define sub-groups of Italian fleet assets, please post them.

More to follow in later posts. Anyone else should feel free to chime in with how and where to base Italian fleet assets as divided into the above groups, both when Italy is neutral (Global War and Fascist Tide setups) or active (during play or all other scenario setups featuring Italy). Some of that info can be culled from this thread, I am sure.

< Message edited by composer99 -- 10/6/2009 6:59:50 PM >


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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/2/2009 4:55:10 AM   
brian brian

 

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I just put it all in La Spezia. Until I take Malta of course. But really I use La Spezia for almost everything all through the war and occasionally maybe a few units in Tripoli if combat is heavy in the Eastern Med. Sometimes I I like to rail the Frogmen to France to take a swing at any British AMPHs in England.

At set up I like to put the two TRS and the nine best AA ships (not all of the BB) together in one port and everything else in another major port. This lowers the target profile without costing you much AA when it is halved on the surprise impulse anyway.

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Post #: 246
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/2/2009 10:24:14 PM   
christo

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: brian brian

I just put it all in La Spezia. Until I take Malta of course. But really I use La Spezia for almost everything all through the war and occasionally maybe a few units in Tripoli if combat is heavy in the Eastern Med. Sometimes I I like to rail the Frogmen to France to take a swing at any British AMPHs in England.

At set up I like to put the two TRS and the nine best AA ships (not all of the BB) together in one port and everything else in another major port. This lowers the target profile without costing you much AA when it is halved on the surprise impulse anyway.


Is this not a GOWP (ghost of WIF past). I do not have the rules in front of me but I was of the understanding that the fact that you get 0 surprise points to spend allowed your opponent to reduce AA/ increase air to sea points etc etc thus achieving much the same effect.

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Post #: 247
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/2/2009 10:51:50 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: christo


quote:

ORIGINAL: brian brian

I just put it all in La Spezia. Until I take Malta of course. But really I use La Spezia for almost everything all through the war and occasionally maybe a few units in Tripoli if combat is heavy in the Eastern Med. Sometimes I I like to rail the Frogmen to France to take a swing at any British AMPHs in England.

At set up I like to put the two TRS and the nine best AA ships (not all of the BB) together in one port and everything else in another major port. This lowers the target profile without costing you much AA when it is halved on the surprise impulse anyway.


Is this not a GOWP (ghost of WIF past). I do not have the rules in front of me but I was of the understanding that the fact that you get 0 surprise points to spend allowed your opponent to reduce AA/ increase air to sea points etc etc thus achieving much the same effect.

But those surprise points can be used for many purposes. Keeping the AA as a threat might force the attacker to 'waste' them on the AA instead of getting column shifts on the naval combat results table.

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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/2/2009 10:57:30 PM   
morgil


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At startup, I have found that Trieste is a good place to start the fleet, with Subs in La Spezia. Reasoning is that the fleet is now one additional sea area away from agressive Allied action, reducing the likelyhood of a DOW / Portstrike, but its no further away from its operating area.




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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/3/2009 4:11:28 PM   
brian brian

 

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Trieste would be an interesting choice if I want the Axis to sit and hide but I usually play them a little differently. If the Italian fleet isn't in La Spezia or Genoa at start there is a lot less pressure on the Allies and the French can more easily decide to take one of their African units back home rather than defending Algeria.

As for how to survive the initial CW port strike, don't forget that an option there is to take your own 50% shot of a surprise strike on the CW fleet. Sinking the Ark Royal and damaging the Glorious can certainly speed up the invasion of Algeria, giving your navy the initiative for several turns. Losing the Ark Royal also impacts the CW front-line air-to-air strength in a naval air battle for almost a year until the first Beaufort FTR3 can reach the Med. If the CW doesn't give me a shot at it in the Western Med on the first turn I will still take the lower odds chances on it in the North Sea as many times as I can. The Axis have to attack to win this game and the Ark Royal is one of the best Allied assets at start.

So it all comes back to your strategic plan for Italy. If you are just going to build airplanes to help add Turkey to the Axis side a couple years after the game starts (a valid Italian strategy, imo), hiding the fleet would be a good choice. If your target is Egypt then an Italian Coast port is OK too but then the Allies don't have to worry about the Western Med as much either, freeing up a little bit more for the Eastern Med.

And if you want to just bluff an early active Italy and an actual threat to Algeria, also a valid choice, you have to take the port strike. Picking the AA table and the target profile seems like an idea exercise for one of those small picture heavy math players that tend to lose anyway and still waste everyone's gaming time counting factors constantly re-designing their task forces and waffling over whether to launch an attack or not. Ugh; Lord help you playing one of those gamers without fractional odds in play. Anyway, 11 ships in a port costs you only one column of AA (again, halved on surprise, and after surprise the CW probably won't risk their Nimrods and Gladiators against real fighter planes and serious AA totals and you can put the whole fleet together again) but gains you potentially two columns of results. This might be the difference between your TRS taking an extra X or D result. But all that is a quick and simple calculation from looking at the charts and the Italian ships some.

These days too I like to play with Cruisers in Flames and the new Cruiser Damage optional to help get more naval units off the map, and when you do that massing your cruisers is like massing all three squads in your platoon right in front of a heavy machine-gun, but I don't think this will be a concern in MWiF 1.

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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/4/2009 5:41:14 PM   
morgil


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Please dont talk about fooling the opponent into a false sense of security by putting the fleet in Trieste, and then frogsinking the Ark Royal at port in Gibraltar.
Guess who fell for it....:(
And oddly enough, the Italian fleet still got to the 4 box in both east and west Med. but luckily they found nada.


< Message edited by morgil -- 10/4/2009 5:43:17 PM >


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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 10/5/2009 5:42:03 PM   
brian brian

 

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ouch. I like that angle for the Italians though, but I don't generally expect to get a good shot like that with the Frogmen on surprise. I set up the Ark Royal in Plymouth and send it to either the North Sea or the Western Med, where it can meet up with the Glorious coming from Aden in the 3 box. This surrenders a surprise point so you may want to skip the Glorious part. But I would never suggest the CW leave CVs in Gibraltar while Italy is still neutral. I use Mogador/Casablanca for that until war starts in the Med. And without a target like that, I keep the Italian frogmen for the day the first Allied AMPHs appear as a potential target.

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Post #: 252
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 4/12/2011 2:45:13 AM   
Red Prince


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Could a single thread be created with the "final" conclusions from each of the national AI threads? I read the first 80 or so posts in the Italy discussion, and as a new member, I don't have the patience to read over 5000 posts (assuming 250 per thread) JUST to catch up on current thinking or actual application of all ideas mentioned in all the threads.

My own 2 cents, which may be out of date, is simple: If the human player can take a certain action, there should be at least some chance that the AI can take the same action.


Reasoning: In other strategy games I've found that using unorthodox/non-historical strategic decisions can render the AI inert, unable to defend. This either means easy victory for the player or a self-imposed prohibition on certain types of experimentation. This limits both fun and replayability.

I should add that while the discussion was quite interesting, it's just too much non-functional information for a newbie to try to absorb at once. It would be useful to see the "final" results and then be able to explore the process at a later time.

< Message edited by Red Prince -- 4/12/2011 8:10:08 AM >


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Post #: 253
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 4/12/2011 5:48:00 PM   
gridley

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

Reasoning: In other strategy games I've found that using unorthodox/non-historical strategic decisions can render the AI inert, unable to defend. This either means easy victory for the player or a self-imposed prohibition on certain types of experimentation. This limits both fun and replayability.



Self imposed prohibition of certian strategies is a fact of life playing against any AI. I don't see this game being any different. That being said I'm hoping that WiF rules, counter limits, etc will make this games AI decisions easier, which will hopefully lead to what appears to be a more challenging AI. I guess we'll see.

Either way Netplay is what I'm really waiting for. My group still gets together once a week now but I can't wait to be able to play other groups from around the world.

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Post #: 254
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 4/12/2011 5:59:06 PM   
Red Prince


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quote:

Either way Netplay is what I'm really waiting for. My group still gets together once a week now but I can't wait to be able to play other groups from around the world.


I am unfortunately one of those who has never had a group. Bought the game back in '95, set up exactly one game with some college buddies, but never started a single impulse. After discovering I'd lost some markers, I bought the Final Edition in 2002 along with the Millenium Annual. Still never found a group, as I live in a fairly remote locale and have moved numerous times to other states.

Netplay would be great, but I first need to refine my understanding of certain aspects (all) of the game. It would be good to have an AI that can counter ludicrous moves, so that I'll know they are dumb.

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RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 4/14/2011 3:28:21 PM   
Extraneous

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

Could a single thread be created with the "final" conclusions from each of the national AI threads? I read the first 80 or so posts in the Italy discussion, and as a new member, I don't have the patience to read over 5000 posts (assuming 250 per thread) JUST to catch up on current thinking or actual application of all ideas mentioned in all the threads.

My own 2 cents, which may be out of date, is simple: If the human player can take a certain action, there should be at least some chance that the AI can take the same action.


Reasoning: In other strategy games I've found that using unorthodox/non-historical strategic decisions can render the AI inert, unable to defend. This either means easy victory for the player or a self-imposed prohibition on certain types of experimentation. This limits both fun and replayability.

I should add that while the discussion was quite interesting, it's just too much non-functional information for a newbie to try to absorb at once. It would be useful to see the "final" results and then be able to explore the process at a later time.




It is not feasible here is a summary that just covers the first 5 pages of the AI for MWiF-Italy thread. There are no conclusions as people are still posting ideas for the AI.

Historical vs. RAW

Post # 32 through Post # 61 (wosung, ptey, Shannon V. Okeets, and etc.)



Italy AI strategic planning

1939 (Cheesehead)

1939 - 1945 (Greyshaft)

1940 - 1941 Yugoslavia as an Italian minor (c92nichj)

Operation Sphinx - Gibraltar and the Western Mediterranean (SeaMonkey)

Algeria after Vichy

Action in the Mediterranean Post # 21 through Post # 27 (a string of posts by lomyrin, trees, Froonp, and SamuraiProgrammer)

Italians in Operation Barbarossa (composer99)

Germany not campaigning in the Mediterranean (hakon)

Multiple variants (Froonp and wosung)

kaikunze Yahoo WiF Italian builds



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Post #: 256
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/5/2011 8:47:30 PM   
Centuur


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Italy should hit the opponent when and where they are vulnerable. So a DoW by the Italians in 1939 should always be done when the CW or the French leave a major area so weak, that you will be able to get a very good chance of a result on. Any large fleet in an undefended large port to capture naval units, Malta (which I only know as a minor port. As an Italian player, I'm not amused to see a major Port bordering my sea area. It just became a very important place to grab and garrison...), Gibraltar, Egypt with a very weak defense or a French player who thinks that Italy will not DoW in 1939 and leaves no bordergarrison - such surprises may occur...) will do for that. However, good CW and French play don't allow this to happen. Personally I think any other DoW by Italy in 1939 is:
If such an opportunity isn't available and the weather in the Med is good in J/F 1940 I always declare war on France. An Italian sitzkrieg is not one of my favourites (I need resources, build points, etc. etc. and I need a little space to breathe). I am a little impatient (when can I buy the product... ) and there are a lot of possibilities by going for Algeria or Syria. Damascus is one of the key cities to capture before war with the CW starts, especially when I have convinced Adolph to go for a close the Med strategy (and as an Italian player I always want to stress to Germany how many resources there are in the Middle East, how nice it is to have an Italian Navy in the Atlantic how many more Italian planes and troops I can give as assistance for garrisons and in Russia in 1942 and the Turks are liable to fight against the Soviets if we attack from the Caucasus etc. etc.). Damascus is not as important as Suez, Malta or Gibraltar, but IMO it is a very important city to have, before Vichy is created. It otherwise could become a very dangerous place if the Allies capture it from Persia/ Iraq and use it as a forward base towards Egypt in 1943 - 1944. I've seen it used that way (at the costs of an active Vichy in 1943) in a game where the Med was closed. It's amazing to see how fast the CW player can get units from India and SA in Syria...
The MAR is therefore the first unit to build (to use against the CW. I want to try to capture Gibraltar so I need it), since it takes a lot of time to build. I like the analysis of how the Italian should defend his homeland. The Italians should try to defend in the Mountains in North Africa and on Sardinia. Both places are far to important to ignore. North Africa buys the Italian player time, which he need to buy all units available for defence.
It is very satisfying to slowly gobble up France (slowly please, do not create Vichy to early, have patience) and during that we kept putting pressure on the CW by capturing Algeria, Tunesia and Syria, while the Germans seriously threatened Britain with a sealion. I expected that the CW would DoW Italy while we were doing so, but that didn't happen. Perhaps the German MAR and PARA stacked ready for attack had something to do with that. So I had to DoW the CW end 1940, since I didn't want to go neutral again.
Our side didn't win the game, essentially due to some very disappointing results in an 1942 Barbarossa (I've never seen a German Player rolling only 1,2 and 3's in a combat phase during the summer of 1942...).
Regarding LL, I did ask the German player what unit he would like me to build, provided he gave me the resources. Needless to say I build the unit he asked for. I was happy enough with the "Close the Med" strategy...

Personally I would never go for a "throw the kitchen sink" type Barbarossa. It is highly dangerous and if it doesn't succeed the Italians are the first ones to get into serious trouble. The CW player is going to slowly gobble up Lybia (even if he did lose Malta, which any Italian player should conquer, now that it is a major port) and very slowly will come closer and closer to the Italian homeland. No way I am going to sit idle for that. Victory hexes for me or not: als an Italian player I want to be able to play well into 1944 and an Barbarossa 1941 which includes my airforce in exchange for a possible conquest of Italy in 1942? No way...
I did play the Russian player once against such an assault and was very happy to notice that if the soviets still got the MECH/ARM saved, together with a good chunck of airforce, you can always come back, even if it is a lot more ground you have to cover. There is only one way of reacting against such an attack for the soviets: Run away with your best units and run faster than the enemy can advance. Besides: a good Russian player sees what's going to happen and reacts accordingly by getting the key units out of the danger zone...

(in reply to Extraneous)
Post #: 257
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/5/2011 10:08:59 PM   
michaelbaldur


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Centuur

Italy should hit the opponent when and where they are vulnerable. So a DoW by the Italians in 1939 should always be done when the CW or the French leave a major area so weak, that you will be able to get a very good chance of a result on. Any large fleet in an undefended large port to capture naval units, Malta (which I only know as a minor port. As an Italian player, I'm not amused to see a major Port bordering my sea area. It just became a very important place to grab and garrison...), Gibraltar, Egypt with a very weak defense or a French player who thinks that Italy will not DoW in 1939 and leaves no bordergarrison - such surprises may occur...) will do for that. However, good CW and French play don't allow this to happen. Personally I think any other DoW by Italy in 1939 is:
If such an opportunity isn't available and the weather in the Med is good in J/F 1940 I always declare war on France. An Italian sitzkrieg is not one of my favourites (I need resources, build points, etc. etc. and I need a little space to breathe). I am a little impatient (when can I buy the product... ) and there are a lot of possibilities by going for Algeria or Syria. Damascus is one of the key cities to capture before war with the CW starts, especially when I have convinced Adolph to go for a close the Med strategy (and as an Italian player I always want to stress to Germany how many resources there are in the Middle East, how nice it is to have an Italian Navy in the Atlantic how many more Italian planes and troops I can give as assistance for garrisons and in Russia in 1942 and the Turks are liable to fight against the Soviets if we attack from the Caucasus etc. etc.). Damascus is not as important as Suez, Malta or Gibraltar, but IMO it is a very important city to have, before Vichy is created. It otherwise could become a very dangerous place if the Allies capture it from Persia/ Iraq and use it as a forward base towards Egypt in 1943 - 1944. I've seen it used that way (at the costs of an active Vichy in 1943) in a game where the Med was closed. It's amazing to see how fast the CW player can get units from India and SA in Syria...
The MAR is therefore the first unit to build (to use against the CW. I want to try to capture Gibraltar so I need it), since it takes a lot of time to build. I like the analysis of how the Italian should defend his homeland. The Italians should try to defend in the Mountains in North Africa and on Sardinia. Both places are far to important to ignore. North Africa buys the Italian player time, which he need to buy all units available for defence.
It is very satisfying to slowly gobble up France (slowly please, do not create Vichy to early, have patience) and during that we kept putting pressure on the CW by capturing Algeria, Tunesia and Syria, while the Germans seriously threatened Britain with a sealion. I expected that the CW would DoW Italy while we were doing so, but that didn't happen. Perhaps the German MAR and PARA stacked ready for attack had something to do with that. So I had to DoW the CW end 1940, since I didn't want to go neutral again.
Our side didn't win the game, essentially due to some very disappointing results in an 1942 Barbarossa (I've never seen a German Player rolling only 1,2 and 3's in a combat phase during the summer of 1942...).
Regarding LL, I did ask the German player what unit he would like me to build, provided he gave me the resources. Needless to say I build the unit he asked for. I was happy enough with the "Close the Med" strategy...

Personally I would never go for a "throw the kitchen sink" type Barbarossa. It is highly dangerous and if it doesn't succeed the Italians are the first ones to get into serious trouble. The CW player is going to slowly gobble up Lybia (even if he did lose Malta, which any Italian player should conquer, now that it is a major port) and very slowly will come closer and closer to the Italian homeland. No way I am going to sit idle for that. Victory hexes for me or not: als an Italian player I want to be able to play well into 1944 and an Barbarossa 1941 which includes my airforce in exchange for a possible conquest of Italy in 1942? No way...
I did play the Russian player once against such an assault and was very happy to notice that if the soviets still got the MECH/ARM saved, together with a good chunck of airforce, you can always come back, even if it is a lot more ground you have to cover. There is only one way of reacting against such an attack for the soviets: Run away with your best units and run faster than the enemy can advance. Besides: a good Russian player sees what's going to happen and reacts accordingly by getting the key units out of the danger zone...



first of: in 39 Italy can only use a few divisions to invade with ..

secondly: Italy simple donīt have production to start itīs marine corps or division, before it gets lend lease from Germany .. so first after they are active ...

they only have 2 BP in 39 ... if they save oil .as they should

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(in reply to Centuur)
Post #: 258
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/5/2011 11:24:46 PM   
Red Prince


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quote:

first of: in 39 Italy can only use a few divisions to invade with ..

secondly: Italy simple donīt have production to start itīs marine corps or division, before it gets lend lease from Germany .. so first after they are active ...

they only have 2 BP in 39 ... if they save oil .as they should


With Unlimited Breakdown they can invade with up to 5 or 6 divisions.

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(in reply to michaelbaldur)
Post #: 259
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 3:37:29 AM   
michaelbaldur


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

quote:

first of: in 39 Italy can only use a few divisions to invade with ..

secondly: Italy simple donīt have production to start itīs marine corps or division, before it gets lend lease from Germany .. so first after they are active ...

they only have 2 BP in 39 ... if they save oil .as they should


With Unlimited Breakdown they can invade with up to 5 or 6 divisions.


still you will need to be active ... there is no way to make invasions with 6 divisions in a combined ..

you simply donīt have enough impulses to get the fleet out .. 1 ship at a time ..

_____________________________

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I work hard, not smart.

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(in reply to Red Prince)
Post #: 260
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 10:17:26 AM   
Red Prince


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quote:

ORIGINAL: michaelbaldur


quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

quote:

first of: in 39 Italy can only use a few divisions to invade with ..

secondly: Italy simple donīt have production to start itīs marine corps or division, before it gets lend lease from Germany .. so first after they are active ...

they only have 2 BP in 39 ... if they save oil .as they should


With Unlimited Breakdown they can invade with up to 5 or 6 divisions.


still you will need to be active ... there is no way to make invasions with 6 divisions in a combined ..

you simply donīt have enough impulses to get the fleet out .. 1 ship at a time ..

No, the best you could do would be 4 on 2 TRS . . . In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.

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Post #: 261
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 6:30:52 PM   
Ur_Vile_WEdge

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince
No, the best you could do would be 4 on 2 TRS . . . In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.



Question. How, if at all, did you tweak the enormous U.S. entry for such an action?

(in reply to Red Prince)
Post #: 262
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 6:35:59 PM   
michaelbaldur


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ur_Vile_WEdge


quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince
No, the best you could do would be 4 on 2 TRS . . . In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.



Question. How, if at all, did you tweak the enormous U.S. entry for such an action?


you can choose dice roll when you test ... so we can basic do everything ... as we should

_____________________________

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I work hard, not smart.

beta tester and Mwif expert

(in reply to Ur_Vile_WEdge)
Post #: 263
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 9:07:38 PM   
paulderynck


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.

You mean you DoW'd China so as not to be restricted to only Combined actions? You'd have to DoW both CW and France to get Surprise effects on those two.

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(in reply to Red Prince)
Post #: 264
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 9:09:30 PM   
Centuur


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We didn't use AMPH in the game in those days (it was an extension I think that came later on), so we invaded with INF on TRS. Together with SB against a notional unit, then a good result is possible to get on Gibraltar, if the CW didn't garrison it in SO 1939. Even if I loose one INF and get disrupted in Gibraltar, it is not easy to throw me out of there for the CW in SO 1939. Now that Malta is a major port, he also has to garrison it (I would probably go for Malta first, since with some land based air it is possible to get even better odds there if it isn't garrisoned. The way I look at it is, if the Allies make a mistake during set up or the first turn, I sure am going to make them pay for it. US entry is of course something which isn't really nice in this case for the Axis, however the opportunity is simply to important to pass on. The same goes by a nice DoW on France if he is really, really careless. It doesn't happen often though. Normal Allied play is to garrison Gibraltar, Marseilles, the French-Italian border and Egypt to prevent any early Italian DoW (I would also garrison Malta, now it is a Major Port). However, if the CW thinks to hurry US entry, he can of course gamble on this...
Concerning the Italian MAR as my first Italian build: I don't build anything the first turn and save my BP for the next turn and than it goes on the spiral (even if it costs me a little oil in ND 1939).

(in reply to michaelbaldur)
Post #: 265
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 9:50:49 PM   
Red Prince


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quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck


quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.

You mean you DoW'd China so as not to be restricted to only Combined actions? You'd have to DoW both CW and France to get Surprise effects on those two.

Correct. I DoW'd China so I could get my full fleet out to sea an impulse before I DoW'd both CW and France.

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(in reply to paulderynck)
Post #: 266
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/6/2011 10:42:15 PM   
Orm


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince


quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck


quote:

ORIGINAL: Red Prince

In my test game I "cheated" by having Italy DOW China to get surprise on both CW and France. Wouldn't recommend that for the AI.

You mean you DoW'd China so as not to be restricted to only Combined actions? You'd have to DoW both CW and France to get Surprise effects on those two.

Correct. I DoW'd China so I could get my full fleet out to sea an impulse before I DoW'd both CW and France.

Next time I suggest CW and France DOW Italy and sink the Italian fleet.

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(in reply to Red Prince)
Post #: 267
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/7/2011 5:31:21 PM   
composer99


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quote:

We didn't use AMPH in the game in those days (it was an extension I think that came later on), so we invaded with INF on TRS


Centuur brings up a point which the AI will need to take into consideration (not just Italy's AI, of course). Playing with AMPH is an optional rule.

Any game which does not include AMPH vastly improves invasion capabilities of all powers.


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Post #: 268
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/7/2011 6:20:02 PM   
Red Prince


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quote:

ORIGINAL: composer99

quote:

We didn't use AMPH in the game in those days (it was an extension I think that came later on), so we invaded with INF on TRS


Centuur brings up a point which the AI will need to take into consideration (not just Italy's AI, of course). Playing with AMPH is an optional rule.

Any game which does not include AMPH vastly improves invasion capabilities of all powers.


Likewise with Unlimited Breakdown.

_____________________________

Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it!
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Post #: 269
RE: AI for MWiF-Italy - 6/24/2011 7:10:53 AM   
brian brian

 

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Malta is so important I send the London MIL there ASAP as the CW, eventually backed by a Territorial, plus the gun that I probably set up there. Good luck getting ashore Benito!

Sometimes I send the 7-3 UK INF instead...

(in reply to Red Prince)
Post #: 270
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