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AI for MWiF - USA

 
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AI for MWiF - USA - 11/25/2005 8:12:37 AM   
composer99


Posts: 2319
Joined: 6/6/2005
From: Ottawa, Canada
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Over Friday & the weekend I'll be giving some thought to the USA's AIO requirements.

The first thing I would say is "watch Bill Cobourn [sic?] play the USA and have the AI mimic whatever he does", since he basically ran a flawless US game at the last WiFCon (I had the distinct misfortune of being the Japanese player trying to do battle with him). Unfortunately, last I heard, his regular WiF pals don't let him go anywhere near the US.

Anyway, aside from the regular requirements of the US AIO, there is also US entry to be taken into account, and I'll post something on that tomorrow when I get home from my practicum.

Post #: 1
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/25/2005 6:50:05 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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I would be delighted to hear your ideas on the USA strategic plan. It is the one major power whose strateigc options are quite diverse for which nothing has been posted here (yet).

You mentioned US Entry Choices which I have made a preliminary pass at. Here is what I have so far. Any and all comments, criticism, and suggestions are welcome.
=========================


1.2 Make all decisions regarding US entry actions and choices; s. 9.4, 13.3 (3)
Only the AIO for the USA player needs to decide about US entry choices. US Entry choices are grouped here into 7 categories. The first four of these are handled by the USA Foreign Liaison, the next two by the USA Commander in Chief, and the seventh by the USA Manufacturing Council. The categories are:
(1) China: US Entry options 1, 9, 17, and 24 - FL
(2) Commonwealth and France: 4, 15, 16, 25, and 27 - FL
(3) Atlantic convoys: 7, 11, 20, 29, 32, 38, 44, and 50 - FL
(4) USSR: 19 and 30 - FL
(5) Japan: 13, 23, 26, 31, 36, 40, 41, and 43 - CC
(6) Americas: 33 and 48 - CC
(7) Production: 22, 28, 34, and 46 - MC.

The assignment of most of these US Entry options to their respective categories are pretty obvious. The only odd ducks are # 4 (the Bearn) and the two for the Americas. I do not see a lot of use for options # 33 (closing the Panama canal) and # 48 (declaring war on minors). I guess they might be important if countries in Central or South America were to align with the Axis or if the US entry in one of the theaters of war were delayed a long time.

The USA Foreign Liaison needs to perform an assessment of how well the war is going for the other major powers: China versus Japan, USSR versus Japan, France and Commonwealth versus Japan, France & Commonwealth versus Germany and/or Italy, and USSR versus Germany/Italy. In some cases the respective major powers will not be at war yet, so the assessment will be hypothetical (if war is declared). In either case the Foreign Liaison needs to measure the value (in CVs for the Allies) of providing assistance, choosing a US entry option in the corresponding category. Note that for most categories the options need to be taken in ascending numerical order.

The measured value of taking the entry choice and the criticality of the allied major power’s need are passed to the Grand Strategist which makes the trade off decision between helping an ally (or allies) versus increasing production versus entering the war earlier. The last is usually expedited by taking as few US entry options as possible. The value of increased production is determined by the Manufacturing Council with input from the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It is measured in CVs by multiplying the increase in build points by the average CVs per build point and that product by any delay (in turns). In some cases the delay has a ripple effect for the out lying years.

As an example, if China were being hammered by Japan, then the US might want to choose option # 1 (Chinese build aircraft) and follow that as soon as possible with # 9 (resources to China). If things are still going badly for China, then more help might be provided indirectly by hindering Japan with # 13 (embargo on strategic materials). Of course, some of these options cannot be taken if the US Entry Pool level is too low, which brings up the point that helping China might mean not choosing other options which could potentially decrease the US Entry Pool level. This is all very tricky stuff but the AIO should be able to quantify it and make a more reasoned decision than most players do over the board. It is primarily a decision tree problem whose goal is to maximize an outcome using expected payoffs for the various choices (decision branches).

3.5.2 Manufacturing Council
Strategic
2.1 Evaluate and recommend US Entry options regarding production; s. 13.3.2 (1)

Any of these options may be chosen to increase the tension level. They should never be chosen such that they endanger the USA being denied the ability to declare war on any of the axis major powers.

The US should push strongly for achieving 11 in both the tension pools, so option #22 can be chosen to double US production. The same applies to achieving 17 for option #34. The other production options, #28 (Strategic bombers) and #46 (Advance build units) should only be taken towards achieving the goal of taking options #22 and #34.

3.5.3 Commander in Chief
Strategic
3.1 Evaluate and recommend US entry options regarding Japan and Americas

Any of these options may be chosen to increase the tension level. They should never be chosen such that they endanger the USA being denied the ability to declare war on any of the axis major powers.

The options #13, (Embargo on strategic materials, -1 RP), #23, (Freeze Japanese assets, -1 RP), and #31, (Oil embargo, -2 oil and -NEI oil ) are taken as soon as reasonably possible. Option #26, (Relocate fleet to Pearl Harbor), should be taken but only after the choices #13, #23, and #31 have been made. #26 can be delayed until 1941 Jul/Aug.

The options #36, (Commonwealth reinforces the Pacific), #40, (US reinforces Guam), #41, (US reinforces the Philippines), and #43, (Commonwealth reinforces NEI), can be taken if the entry pool level permits. These can be delayed and are much less important than the Manufacturing Council’s options.

The America’s options #33, (Close the Panama Canal), and #48, (US may declare war on minors), should only be taken if more tension is needed. Though #48 might be needed if the USA’s entry into the European conflict is delayed overly long.

3.5.4 Foreign Liaison
Strategic
4.1 Evaluate and recommend US entry options regarding China, the Commonwealth and France, the USSR, and Atlantic convoys

Any of these options may be chosen to increase the tension level. They should never be chosen such that they endanger the USA being denied the ability to declare war on any of the axis major powers.

All of the Chinese options (#1, #9, #17, and #24) should be chosen, in order, if China is losing CVs, resources, or territory to the Japanese. They can also be used to increase the Japanese tension pool.

Option #4, (Intern French Carrier Bearn), is chosen when the first hex of France is taken by Germany. The unit is converted to a TRS because that is an immediately useful unit that costs nothing extra to build and because the USA carriers are vastly superior to the Bearn. Option #15, (Resources to the western allies), is only chosen if the Commonwealth needs resources and convoys are available for shipping them. This increases in importance if the Commonwealth is transporting resources to the USSR and the USA has to replenish them for the Commonwealth factories to remain at maximum production. Option #16, (Gift of destroyers to the Commonwealth), is taken as soon as reasonably possible. Option #25, (Repair western Allies ships), is only taken if the Commonwealth or France is suffering horrendous damage to ships. Option #27, (Lend lease to western Allies), is taken if (1) the Commonwealth is in danger of being invaded, (2) is unable to maintain respectable production levels, or (3) is losing control of the Mediterranean. If France is looking like it might not be conquered, this option becomes very attractive for building all the French non-naval units.

Option #19, (Resources to the USSR), is only chosen after: (1) Germany and the USSR are at war, and (2) the USSR needs resources, and (3) resources and convoys to transport them are available. Option #30, Lend lease to the USSR, is similar to option #19. It is much more attractive if optional rule #49 (which lets the USSR save markers as build points) is being used.

Option #7, (Occupy Greenland and Iceland), is taken to increase the tension level. Option #11, (US east coast escorts), is taken if the Commonwealth is having trouble protecting its convoys. It is a good option for increasing the tension level. The same is true for options: #20, (US land-based air escorts), #29, (North Atlantic escorts), #32, (US refutes Naval War Zones), #38, (Arm merchantmen), and #50, (Unrestricted naval warfare). Option #44, (US occupies Northern Ireland), is used in preparation for invading Europe, or retaking Great Britain. Until then, this entry choice is of little value.



_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to composer99)
Post #: 2
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 1:18:10 AM   
Froonp


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I'd firstly add that US Entry Option choice for the USA (pre gear up & war appropriation bill) is more guided by the need to achieve a certain Tension level to be able to take the Gear Up & War app Bill Options, than by the consequences of the Options themselves.

quote:

The assignment of most of these US Entry options to their respective categories are pretty obvious. The only odd ducks are # 4 (the Bearn)

For me this one belongs to the USA Manufacturing Council. The Bearn is transformed either into a TRS of a new CV, this is the Manufacturing council area.

quote:

The USA Foreign Liaison needs to perform an assessment of how well the war is going for the other major powers: China versus Japan, USSR versus Japan, France and Commonwealth versus Japan, France & Commonwealth versus Germany and/or Italy, and USSR versus Germany/Italy. In some cases the respective major powers will not be at war yet, so the assessment will be hypothetical (if war is declared). In either case the Foreign Liaison needs to measure the value (in CVs for the Allies) of providing assistance, choosing a US entry option in the corresponding category. Note that for most categories the options need to be taken in ascending numerical order.

The measured value of taking the entry choice and the criticality of the allied major power’s need are passed to the Grand Strategist which makes the trade off decision between helping an ally (or allies) versus increasing production versus entering the war earlier. The last is usually expedited by taking as few US entry options as possible. The value of increased production is determined by the Manufacturing Council with input from the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It is measured in CVs by multiplying the increase in build points by the average CVs per build point and that product by any delay (in turns). In some cases the delay has a ripple effect for the out lying years.

As an example, if China were being hammered by Japan, then the US might want to choose option # 1 (Chinese build aircraft) and follow that as soon as possible with # 9 (resources to China). If things are still going badly for China, then more help might be provided indirectly by hindering Japan with # 13 (embargo on strategic materials). Of course, some of these options cannot be taken if the US Entry Pool level is too low, which brings up the point that helping China might mean not choosing other options which could potentially decrease the US Entry Pool level. This is all very tricky stuff but the AIO should be able to quantify it and make a more reasoned decision than most players do over the board. It is primarily a decision tree problem whose goal is to maximize an outcome using expected payoffs for the various choices (decision branches).

I see things differently here.
As I said first, I think that the US Entry options are chosen more to augment the tention to achieve the right tension for the gear up and WAB.
For me, the whole objective of the US Entry Options for the USA is to get the most BP possible, and to enter war the sooner possible. Helping the Allies with the said options is fine, but this is not the main point.
In the example you gave for China, my USA would choose option 1 all the time, even if China is doing well, and same for Option 9. The only parameter I would consider is "Do I have enough non zero chits in the given Entry Pool to have them go into the Tension Pool or not". If I have the chits, I take the Option.
The only exception are the options that lower the RP & Oil given to the Japanese, as when I chose them my production will lower. So I tend to wait to choose the first of these options untill I can chose all 3 of them nearly at once. The opbjective with those 3 options is to try to keep the Japanese BP as long as possible, and cut the Oil to the Japanese as soon as possible. So I tend to try to make those moments match.

quote:


3.5.3 Commander in Chief
(...)
The options #13, (Embargo on strategic materials, -1 RP), #23, (Freeze Japanese assets, -1 RP), and #31, (Oil embargo, -2 oil and -NEI oil ) are taken as soon as reasonably possible. Option #26, (Relocate fleet to Pearl Harbor), should be taken but only after the choices #13, #23, and #31 have been made. #26 can be delayed until 1941 Jul/Aug.

I think that Option 26 must be chosen as soon as available, because it has a psychologic effect on the Japanese. When this Option is chosen, the Japanese normaly knows he only have a couple of turns in front of him (after the fleet has really relocated) before the USA can have serious chances of entering the war (any chance of 4+ of entering the war is serious to me). This may disturb the Japanese in his preparation plans, and even force him to attack when he is not ready.

quote:


3.5.4 Foreign Liaison
(...)
Option #15, (Resources to the western allies), is only chosen if the Commonwealth needs resources and convoys are available for shipping them.

Do not forget that the USA can give Oil to the CW into Canada. This need no CP.

quote:

This increases in importance if the Commonwealth is transporting resources to the USSR and the USA has to replenish them for the Commonwealth factories to remain at maximum production.

This can't be done, because the CW can't receive RP when it is lending RP.

quote:

Option #19, (Resources to the USSR), is only chosen after: (1) Germany and the USSR are at war, and (2) the USSR needs resources, and (3) resources and convoys to transport them are available. Option #30, Lend lease to the USSR, is similar to option #19. It is much more attractive if optional rule #49 (which lets the USSR save markers as build points) is being used.

It can also be chosen only for the tension, and no RP being leased. RP will be leased in the future, if it becomes possible, and if it is needed (and if it is wanted, which often is the blocking part).

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 3
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 3:34:37 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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Beran to Manufacturing Council is ok. I said it was an odd duck.

No argument with getting the US production numbers up ASAP - and declaration of war.

Timing the Japanese resource cut off is an interesting idea. I like taking things away from them as soon as possible though. Less for the Japanese is more importnat than more for the USA.

I don't usually play for psychological effects. Not taking the option also leaves the Japanese the opporunity to go off on some campaign in China or Russia that leaves him overcommitted when the fleet does sail out to Honolulu. Doesn't the Japanese player always wonder what is going on anyway? Isn't it his fate to worry?

If you give resources to Canada, then they have an extra resource to send to Britain and that needs a convoy.

Right: "Neither a borrower and a lender be." To paraphase Shakespeare.

_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to Froonp)
Post #: 4
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 3:36:17 AM   
composer99


Posts: 2319
Joined: 6/6/2005
From: Ottawa, Canada
Status: online
There's a lot to go over before I even mention my own analysis of the US entry conundrums, so I'll just get started.

quote:

Option #19, (Resources to the USSR), is only chosen after: (1) Germany and the USSR are at war, and (2) the USSR needs resources, and (3) resources and convoys to transport them are available. Option #30, Lend lease to the USSR, is similar to option #19. It is much more attractive if optional rule #49 (which lets the USSR save markers as build points) is being used.


A Soviet-German war is not a necessary pre-requisite for choosing these options under the current rules, and there is some advantage to choosing them before such a war breaks out, usually the ability to give the USSR a small production boost before it faces the rampaging hordes of the Wehrmacht.

quote:

quote:

quote:
This increases in importance if the Commonwealth is transporting resources to the USSR and the USA has to replenish them for the Commonwealth factories to remain at maximum production.

This can't be done, because the CW can't receive RP when it is lending RP.


Actually, it can be done: in 5. Lending Stage, it is written, "you can give resources to a major power in the same turn as another major power gives resources to you." (pp. 9)

The CW can lend resources and/or build points to USSR while being lent resources and/or build points by the USA; but it can't lend resources to a major power that is lending it resources, nor can it lend build points to a major power that is lending it build points.

Anyway, on with my own analysis, which I hope informs the decision making of the AIO.

The Highest-Priority US Entry Option

This is, without a doubt, Entry Option 34, Pass War Appropriations Bill; for which the US needs entry levels of 34 in both pools, tension levels of 17 in both pools, and it must also have previously passed the Gear Up Production option. Every effort must be made to make this option pass as early as possible. In my analysis, I picked Nov/Dec 1941 as the "standard" date by which the US picks this option, whether it does so because of US entry or because it ends up at war with all the Axis. This means that every option chosen must be done so in accordance with its ability to reach option 34.

Each turn's delay in Option 34's passage represents a 40 build-point production penalty for the United States over the rest of the game. I don't know about you but that's a pretty steep penalty, even if it is spread over four years of war, given that it represents a single turn's production that only two other powers (Germany & the USSR) can achieve only by 1943.

The corollary is that every turn ahead of Nov/Dec 1941 that the US picks up Option 34 is a 40 build point bonus. But the US would have to be extremely lucky to get there.

So, having determined how important Option 34 is, how do we get there?

There are two ways: (1) Accumulate enough entry & tension in the two pools to pass the option. This is certainly possible, though rather difficult if the good US entry chits have all been gobbled up by border pact draws; and (2) arrange for as early a war as is possible against Japan.

More in the next post!

(in reply to Froonp)
Post #: 5
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 5:12:18 AM   
composer99


Posts: 2319
Joined: 6/6/2005
From: Ottawa, Canada
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So, if our two main options are to go straight for Option 34 or to get it by going about war with Japan, how would we work through those options to get what we want? Initially (that is, through to S/O 1940 or thereabouts), they are remarkably similar, because in either case we will want enough entry and tension in the Ge/It pools, and also because we need to get the pre-requisite Option 22.

Early War US Entry

S/O 1939 - M/A 1940
In the first few turns of the war, especially since US entry chits are higher-valued in 1939 than in 1940, the US is better off accumulating entry and not picking many (if any) options. Why is this?

Simple. It gives the US flexibility. Picking options all the time in the early stages may reduce your option-selecting capabilities later, especially if key large-value chits are drained away to tension. Plus when you've got 16 entry in a pool there's usually an option you can pick in the 12-15 range this turn that will usually generate tension AND an option in the 7-11 range that you can take next turn that will also generate tension in the event that your entry does not increase over the turn.

In general, the US should probably only pick options if things are getting really bad for the Allies right away, which shouldn't really be happening until the fall of France. For the sake of generating some early tension, especially if Germany is aggressively attacking minors, it may want to select one option for each pool that is likely to generate tension. Interning the Bearn is probably a must during this period as well. Resources to Western Allies is not a bad idea either, since you can give the CW a leg up on shortening its convoy lines before German U-boats are operating off the Atlantic seaboard.

M/J 1940 - S/O 1940
This is a pretty good period for collecting US entry: France will get Vichied; the Germans will attack numerous minors (if they haven't already), and Japan will probably take not a few Chinese cities and maybe even have a war with the USSR.

Options during this period must be selected both for their tension generating properties and for their ability to help the CW fight the Battle of the Atlantic. The only option which I would not suggest selecting during this period is 13 (Embargo on Strategic Materials) as the trade-off is still in your favour economically speaking.

Also, by September/October 1940, given average chit values, you should be in a position to select option 22 (Gear Up Production).

N/D 1940 - S/O 1941
This is also a pretty good period for US entry, as the entry values of chits begin to shoot up again, especially if most of the '0' value chits have been locked up (and even more so if most of them are in Germany's border chits, since that increases the success chance of Russia's border stuffing, which in turn further increases the amount of time those worthless 0 chits will remain locked away).

At this point, you have three major pathways of possibility:

(1) You are going for Option 34 by way of balanced entry/tension. Continue to pick options according to their ability to generate tension, and once you have the requisite tension stop picking options until you can pick 34 or you are forced to pick an option to help bail your Allies out of a tough spot.

(2) Operation Sealion is impending or underway. Ratchet up the entry in the Ge/It pool and get the tension you need to go to war, as fast as you can! The fact that the Axis will have accrued US entry for invading the UK, conquering Gibraltar (likely as not) and conquering Suez will help in this regard, since you will be dealing with a substantial penalty owing to the fact that you haven't picked option 34.

(3) You are trying to gun for Japan. In this case your sole focus in the Ge/It pool is to pass lending options to the USSR if you haven't done so already. In the meantime, you'll pile on the entry in the Japan pool and put the fleet in Pearl Harbour; this will allow you to manipulate tension rolls so you can select consecutive options against Japan with greater ease. Your ultimate objective is to pick up option 31 (Oil embargo) as soon as you can, and be in a position to threaten Japan with CW reinforces Pacific by S/O or N/D 1941.

November/December 1941 - THE Turn
Ideally, under the three circumstances above you will have accumulated enough entry to pass the War Appropriations Act by this point; it is quite likely that you will be able to do so if Japan declares war on you by/on this turn, so it's a pretty good pathway to take. A great way to make sure the Japanese get the hint is to build out your submarine force pools and base them in Midway and (once you can) Honolulu such that you can maximize the number of subs that can strike at the Japanese convoy lines in a surprise impulse. Between the oil embargo and the subs, the Japanese player should be sweating bullets.

More to come after I get some dinner.

(in reply to composer99)
Post #: 6
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 5:14:03 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:


There are two ways: (1) Accumulate enough entry & tension in the two pools to pass the option. This is certainly possible, though rather difficult if the good US entry chits have all been gobbled up by border pact draws; and (2) arrange for as early a war as is possible against Japan.


Now about those entry chits ...

At the request of Harry Rowland, Chris Marinacci set up a probaility distribution instead of a limited number of chits. Therefore, there are an infinite number of chits available. What this means is that the probabilities for what chit you draw doesn't change as you draw chits. You could draw 7 (lucky) straight 6s or 13 (unlucky)straight 0s. It does change every year, the same way it does in WIF FE.

I am going to stay with that decision for MWIF.

Which leads to no one "gobbling up" the entry chits. I had this discussion with Patrice several months back before I had gotten to reading the code about randomly selecting chits. Since then, I have gone over it all with Chris, who brought me up to date with Harry's involvement. I did revise the probabilities from CWIF so MWIF' probabilities now match those of the most recent counter mix.

_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to composer99)
Post #: 7
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 5:26:54 AM   
composer99


Posts: 2319
Joined: 6/6/2005
From: Ottawa, Canada
Status: online
quote:

At the request of Harry Rowland, Chris Marinacci set up a probaility distribution instead of a limited number of chits. Therefore, there are an infinite number of chits available. What this means is that the probabilities for what chit you draw doesn't change as you draw chits. You could draw 7 (lucky) straight 6s or 13 (unlucky)straight 0s. It does change every year, the same way it does in WIF FE.

I am going to stay with that decision for MWIF.


This, on balance, is good news for the US, somewhat good news for Germany, and probably not so good news for the USSR. Zeroes make up 13.3% of the chit pool in 1939 and 22.6% of the chit pool in 1940, so the US is unlikely to suffer having zeroes in its chit pool in 1939, and even when it has a 1 in 5 chance of getting them in 1940, well, it also has a 1 in 5 chance of getting 1s and 2s, and just about a 1 in 5 chance of gettings 3s, so no real worries there. I've generally found that my US entry values are often substantially higher playing CWiF than WiF:FE.

I don't think this alters my number crunching too much since it was based on the average chit values, which in a probability distribution model are blissfully not affected by chit draws.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 8
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/26/2005 9:21:09 AM   
composer99


Posts: 2319
Joined: 6/6/2005
From: Ottawa, Canada
Status: online
Now, having determined that the option of options is War Appropriations Act, what are the next-ranked options in terms of priorities?

2. Option 22: Gear up Production
If War Appropriations is the principal objective of the US' entry manipulation, then this, as its direct prerequisite, is the next most important option.

3. Lending Options to European Powers
Namely, options 15, 19, 27, and 30. Being able to lend resources to the CW and to the USSR, the two other Big Three Allied powers, is pretty key, and probably among the most important options the US will play after seeing to its own production.

4. Screwing Japan Over
Options 13, 23, 26, 31, 36 (if you can get away with it), and maybe 40, 41, 43. Since one of the easiest ways to get into the war is to make Japan declare war on you (either to port strike your fleet & invade Manila or at the very least avoid having your subs run rampant through their convoys in your own surprise impulse), then these are pretty key. Just not necessarily as key as your own production options and helping the other Allies out.

5. Battle of Atlantic
Options 11, 16, 20, 25, 29, 32, maybe 38, and even more maybe 50. It's an unfortunate fact that in order to ship your lend-lease around, keep the troops in North Africa & the Med in supply, and in general make sure that the sea lanes of communication from the US to Europe are secure that you'll have to do something about the dreaded submarine. Helping the CW deal with the U-boat menace by taking part of the burden off its shoulders helps it defend the key sea areas around Britain proper, as well as the sea routes of lend-lease to the USSR.

6. Assisting China
Options 1, 9, 17, 24. You'll probably pick many of these options despite their relatively low priority because of their reasonable entry requirements and their 40-50% tension ratios (especially when you can jack up the tension with the fleet in Pearl Harbour). But unless Japan is threatening to get multiple hexes on Chungking it's not particularly urgent.

7. Everything Else
Options 4, 7, 28, and maybe 33, 44, 46, 48. Granted, you'll almost always pick 4 (Intern Bearn) because you'll get a free TRS out of the deal, and you'll generally pick 7 because of the whopping tension roll it gets, but the others are pretty low priority, either because they're in the neighbourhood of other, more critical options (such as 27 or 30) or you're not likely to need them before you go to war, or the chances of you playing them before you go to war are basically nil.

(in reply to composer99)
Post #: 9
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/28/2005 2:29:10 PM   
Froonp


Posts: 7899
Joined: 10/21/2003
From: Marseilles, France
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quote:

If you give resources to Canada, then they have an extra resource to send to Britain and that needs a convoy.

I was rather talking about lending OIL to the CW into Canada, thus saving the Tankers to ship to UK, no need of them. The Oil is stored in Canada, and then (next turn) units can reorg on this oil using regular CP (supply lines).

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 10
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/28/2005 6:50:57 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 18411
Joined: 5/19/2005
From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: composer99
Now, having determined that the option of options is War Appropriations Act, what are the next-ranked options in terms of priorities?

2. Option 22: Gear up Production
If War Appropriations is the principal objective of the US' entry manipulation, then this, as its direct prerequisite, is the next most important option.

3. Lending Options to European Powers
Namely, options 15, 19, 27, and 30. Being able to lend resources to the CW and to the USSR, the two other Big Three Allied powers, is pretty key, and probably among the most important options the US will play after seeing to its own production.

4. Screwing Japan Over
Options 13, 23, 26, 31, 36 (if you can get away with it), and maybe 40, 41, 43. Since one of the easiest ways to get into the war is to make Japan declare war on you (either to port strike your fleet & invade Manila or at the very least avoid having your subs run rampant through their convoys in your own surprise impulse), then these are pretty key. Just not necessarily as key as your own production options and helping the other Allies out.

5. Battle of Atlantic
Options 11, 16, 20, 25, 29, 32, maybe 38, and even more maybe 50. It's an unfortunate fact that in order to ship your lend-lease around, keep the troops in North Africa & the Med in supply, and in general make sure that the sea lanes of communication from the US to Europe are secure that you'll have to do something about the dreaded submarine. Helping the CW deal with the U-boat menace by taking part of the burden off its shoulders helps it defend the key sea areas around Britain proper, as well as the sea routes of lend-lease to the USSR.

6. Assisting China
Options 1, 9, 17, 24. You'll probably pick many of these options despite their relatively low priority because of their reasonable entry requirements and their 40-50% tension ratios (especially when you can jack up the tension with the fleet in Pearl Harbour). But unless Japan is threatening to get multiple hexes on Chungking it's not particularly urgent.

7. Everything Else
Options 4, 7, 28, and maybe 33, 44, 46, 48. Granted, you'll almost always pick 4 (Intern Bearn) because you'll get a free TRS out of the deal, and you'll generally pick 7 because of the whopping tension roll it gets, but the others are pretty low priority, either because they're in the neighbourhood of other, more critical options (such as 27 or 30) or you're not likely to need them before you go to war, or the chances of you playing them before you go to war are basically nil.


I have no particular argument with your priorities here. It does depend on the quality of your opponents though. If the USSR player (or Chinese, or Commonwealth) is having no troubles because of inept play by the German (or Japanese or Italian) then the various assistance packages the USA can put together may not be needed. To put this another way, if the Chinese player is a novice (trying to learn the game), the Chinese support options might become a very high priority indeed. Priority items #1 and #2 are locked in place, regardless. There is actually a priority 0 item, which is to never risk being denied the right to declare war because you have emptied the entry pool - and beyond.

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Post #: 11
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/28/2005 6:51:26 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Froonp

quote:

If you give resources to Canada, then they have an extra resource to send to Britain and that needs a convoy.

I was rather talking about lending OIL to the CW into Canada, thus saving the Tankers to ship to UK, no need of them. The Oil is stored in Canada, and then (next turn) units can reorg on this oil using regular CP (supply lines).


Good point.

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Post #: 12
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 4:08:49 AM   
composer99


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quote:

I have no particular argument with your priorities here. It does depend on the quality of your opponents though. If the USSR player (or Chinese, or Commonwealth) is having no troubles because of inept play by the German (or Japanese or Italian) then the various assistance packages the USA can put together may not be needed. To put this another way, if the Chinese player is a novice (trying to learn the game), the Chinese support options might become a very high priority indeed. Priority items #1 and #2 are locked in place, regardless. There is actually a priority 0 item, which is to never risk being denied the right to declare war because you have emptied the entry pool - and beyond.


So far, so good. Of course, we are trying to work here from the standpoint of the US AIO, so I guess the AIO would need to calculate the needs of its allies. Hopefully a novice Chinese player won't be much of a problem, though. I can't imagine too many humans wanting to play China and leave the US as a computer-controlled ally; nor will the Chinese AIO simulate a novice player (we hope).

Supposing the priorities 0, 1, and 2 are pretty much inviolate, the US AIO should take into account the following things when choosing options:

(1) Does this option help the US get to its gear ups or going to war?
(2) How many bps of losses has each of the US' allies taken this past turn?
(3) How many objective hexes has each of the US' allies lost this past turn (2 or more in a turn (1 for China) is a major crisis and something should be done to shore them up pdq)?
(4) Will this option help the Allies press the attack or defend against Axis threats?

So, the US should generally only choose an option in a given turn if it assists in (1). The highest priority is to choose options that assist Allies who are facing situation (2), or that hinder the Axis forces responsible for that situation. If that situation has not occured, the US should choose an option that will help the ally who has lost the most build points this turn (3); finally, the option should be chosen based on its general boosting of Allied military flexibility & capability (4).

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Post #: 13
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 8:49:38 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: composer99

quote:

I have no particular argument with your priorities here. It does depend on the quality of your opponents though. If the USSR player (or Chinese, or Commonwealth) is having no troubles because of inept play by the German (or Japanese or Italian) then the various assistance packages the USA can put together may not be needed. To put this another way, if the Chinese player is a novice (trying to learn the game), the Chinese support options might become a very high priority indeed. Priority items #1 and #2 are locked in place, regardless. There is actually a priority 0 item, which is to never risk being denied the right to declare war because you have emptied the entry pool - and beyond.


So far, so good. Of course, we are trying to work here from the standpoint of the US AIO, so I guess the AIO would need to calculate the needs of its allies. Hopefully a novice Chinese player won't be much of a problem, though. I can't imagine too many humans wanting to play China and leave the US as a computer-controlled ally; nor will the Chinese AIO simulate a novice player (we hope).

Supposing the priorities 0, 1, and 2 are pretty much inviolate, the US AIO should take into account the following things when choosing options:

(1) Does this option help the US get to its gear ups or going to war?
(2) How many bps of losses has each of the US' allies taken this past turn?
(3) How many objective hexes has each of the US' allies lost this past turn (2 or more in a turn (1 for China) is a major crisis and something should be done to shore them up pdq)?
(4) Will this option help the Allies press the attack or defend against Axis threats?

So, the US should generally only choose an option in a given turn if it assists in (1). The highest priority is to choose options that assist Allies who are facing situation (2), or that hinder the Axis forces responsible for that situation. If that situation has not occured, the US should choose an option that will help the ally who has lost the most build points this turn (3); finally, the option should be chosen based on its general boosting of Allied military flexibility & capability (4).


Yep.

I would do all the calculations for comparisons in CVs. That includes threats to objective hexes as well as the objective hexes themselves. So, if the Japanese were positioned to take out a Chinese resource that would be evaluated as very close to having taken the resource already. I would be looking for some threshold number (in CVs) that pushes a US entry option into the "take the option now" category.

I have to think about how to measure in CVs the amount of assistance each USE option would provide. I might have to write a special routine for each option.

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Post #: 14
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 3:12:18 PM   
c92nichj


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quote:

There is actually a priority 0 item, which is to never risk being denied the right to declare war because you have emptied the entry pool - and beyond.


There was a strategy done in WIFCon one year which pretty much ignored US-Entry US was unable to decalre war against the EuroAxis. was succesfully done and the allies won a big victory.

< Message edited by c92nichj -- 11/30/2005 4:04:49 PM >

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Post #: 15
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 3:54:51 PM   
hakon

 

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In fact, we tried to tempt Germany into the same mistake in our last game, but after a long consideration, they didnt take the bait.

As long as the western allies are in a position to take belgium and the netherlands and russia is in a position to conquer Rumania and ally Bulgaria, denying Bessarrabia is very dangerous for Germany, even if it means that the US can never dow the western Axis.

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Post #: 16
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 5:58:29 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: c92nichj

quote:

There is actually a priority 0 item, which is to never risk being denied the right to declare war because you have emptied the entry pool - and beyond.


There was a strategy done in WIFCon one year which pretty much ignored US-Entry US was unable to decalre war against the EuroAxis. was succesfully done and the allies won a big victory.


Sorry, I don't follow what you are saying here. Allies won a big victory how?

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Post #: 17
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 6:00:41 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: hakon

In fact, we tried to tempt Germany into the same mistake in our last game, but after a long consideration, they didnt take the bait.

As long as the western allies are in a position to take belgium and the netherlands and russia is in a position to conquer Rumania and ally Bulgaria, denying Bessarrabia is very dangerous for Germany, even if it means that the US can never dow the western Axis.


I still don't understand.

What are the circumstances when the question about denying Bessarabia is put to Germany? That is, when does it occur and who holds what territory? Why is it dangerous to Germany?

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Post #: 18
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 6:49:12 PM   
c92nichj


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quote:

Allies won a big victory how?


This was combined with a weak setup against france.

Russian troops went in and conquered Rumania burining the oilfields. Hungary will be DOWed as well by for example CW, forcing the Germans to align it, meaning less lendlease from USSR.

CW and france DOW Belgium and setup a strong defensive position along the Dyle.

A very much weakened Germany(no oil from rumania less resources from USSR) will have a hard time to take out the French and the CW who will be well dug in behind the Dyle.

USSR will build more than usual and in a strong position to stuff the border during '41, france might even survive until '41.

There are still alot of things for US to do even if they cannot declare war on Germanu/Italy. They can focus their effort on Japan, take out neutrals like Norway to open up the Baltic, they still can transport French and CW units, they can take part of a frontline even if they are unable to attack. Lendlease to USSR, CW and Free France can be maximised.

With this setup USSR, CW and Free France will be able to take on Germany and Italy alone.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 19
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 11/30/2005 7:20:19 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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Very nice.

Another alternate strategic plan (or set of plans, since most of the Allies are involved).

Thanks.

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Post #: 20
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/1/2005 2:55:12 PM   
hakon

 

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Of course, as this strategy is getting better known, it should be relatively easy to counter for the axis. The first indication that the allies are going for this, is that the US puts only 1 initial chit in the german/italian pool, and the other 2 in the japanese pool.

If this is done, Germany can do 1 out of 2 things to stop the bessarabia claim:
- DOW yugoslavia in impulse 3 of S/O, and align Rumania at once (my favourite in any case).
- Set up strong enough againt belgium/france to threaten an early conquest of france in the case that france attacks belgium/holland, ie stop tem before they can set up behind the dyle or even the rhein. The best thing would be to knock out belgium in impulse 3 of s/o in this case.

In the last case, Germany must be willing to spend both of her offensive chits against france to ensure a quick and painless conquest of france in 1940, as german production can become very small without those resources.

Garmany should probably also build 1-2 synth plants when this happens.

If france is in a position to hold the dyle or even the rhein, Germany should not risk loosing the rumanian oil (unless, of course, you dont play with oil).

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 21
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/1/2005 11:45:15 PM   
composer99


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quote:

If this is done, Germany can do 1 out of 2 things to stop the bessarabia claim:
- DOW yugoslavia in impulse 3 of S/O, and align Rumania at once (my favourite in any case).
- Set up strong enough againt belgium/france to threaten an early conquest of france in the case that france attacks belgium/holland, ie stop tem before they can set up behind the dyle or even the rhein. The best thing would be to knock out belgium in impulse 3 of s/o in this case.


They can also accept the Soviet border claim and hand over Bessarabia, which does not have any US entry effect whatsoever.

In any case, the "all-out Allied aggression in Europe" strategy is not strictly under the US' AIO purview only: from the US' point of view we are concerned with the US entry situation that this imposes upon us and how that will funnel our own military & production strategies.

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Post #: 22
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/2/2005 12:00:17 AM   
c92nichj


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A decent counter is to setup a force in western germany, happily let the wallies DOW Belgium and rush in with Germans defending Brussels.
You're across the dyle allready in '39, have Belgium as an aligned minor and didn't have to take a USE hit for a DOW on Belgium. Pretty good result for Germany.

As germany sets up lasts it should be possible to see if the wallies are setup for this strategy.

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Post #: 23
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/2/2005 1:14:42 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: c92nichj
As germany sets up lasts it should be possible to see if the wallies are setup for this strategy.


Oooooh !

Look at the enemy set ups for gathering intelligence on their intentions.

Now why don't I have that written down somewhere! I can see a ton of other places to do that sort of analysis. Or at least I can now that you have mentioned it.

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Post #: 24
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 1:36:34 AM   
composer99


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After a long and not entirely welcome break from thinking about the US AIO, I've come up with a more or less comprehensive list of the US' strategic/tactical "objectives", that is, sites on the map that it wants some kind of control over. For ease of consideration I've split them up into PTO and ETO (Pacific and European Theatres of Operation). I've also tried to split them up into "bite-size" groups if that will help the AIO work.

Pacific Theatre of Operations Master List of "Objectives"

Sea Areas/Sea Area Groups
- Eastern Pacific (the collection of sea areas east of the Dutch Harbour - Honolulu - Pago Pago line stretching back to the US, incl. Polynesia)
- Hawaiian Perimeter (Central Pacific Ocean, The Marshalls, Hawaiian Islands, Christmas Islands)
- North Pacific (Bering Sea & Okhostk Sea)
- South Pacific (New Zealand Coast, Tasman Sea, Coral Sea)
- Central Pacific (The Solomons, Bismarck Sea, Marianas)
- Japanese Perimeter (Timor Sea, South China Sea, China Sea, Sea of Japan, Japanese Coast)

Land Regions
- Hawaii/Midway
- Dutch Harbour/Pago Pago
- Australia/New Zealand
- Fiji/New Hebrides
- Solomon Islands/Rabaul
- New Guinea
- NEI
- Philippines
- Marshall Islands
- Caroline Islands
- Guam/Marianas/Palau Islands
- Bonin Islands
- Taiwan
- Japan
- Mainland Asia South (Indochina, Thailand, Malaya, Canton, Hong Kong)
- Mainland Asia North (Korea, Manchuria, China north of the coastal mountains)

Special
- Japanese Supply Lines
- Japanese Convoy Lines
- Japan's Airspace

European Theatre of Operations Master List of "Objectives"

Sea Areas/Sea Area Groups
- The Atlantic (all the Atlantic sea areas that are on the printed America map)
- UK Perimeter (North Sea, Faeroes' Gap, Bay of Biscay)
- African Coast (Cape St. Vincent, Cape Verde Basin, Gulf of Guinea)
- The Meditteranean (E. Med, W. Med, Italian Coast)
- Baltic Sea (The Baltic Sea)

Land Regions
- UK/Ireland
- Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden, Denmark)
- French North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia)
- North Africa (Libya, Egypt)
- The Levant (Palestine, Syria)
- Turkey
- The Balkans (Greece, Albania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia)
- Sardinia/Sicily
- Italy
- Iberia (Portugal/Spain)
- France/Low Countries
- Germany

Special
- Allied Convoy Lines
- Allied Supply Lines
- Axis Supply Lines
- Axis Convoy Lines
- European Airspace

To keep the length of my posts shorter, I'll just stop here and keep going on a different post.

< Message edited by composer99 -- 12/10/2005 11:24:48 PM >


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Post #: 25
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 1:44:52 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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At first perusal, it looks good to me. Busy lttle country that US of A.

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Post #: 26
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 1:52:07 AM   
composer99


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In an effort to save some typing time, when I do a by-year breakdown of what the US wants to be doing in terms of attaining objectives, I'm going to resort to the following labels:

Defence - The US wants to hold on to this objective in the face of potential or actual enemy attacks. The US does not have numerical superiority in combat values (CVs) in this theatre.

Ignore - The US either has or can bring superior CVs into this theatre, but has better uses for them and will not allocate forces to secure it.

Probing Attack - A step up from Defence, this is where the US does not have superiority in this theatre, but will launch raids to secure airbases, attempt to sever enemy supply lines, and generally engage in low-risk attacks to get better position.

Conflict - When the CVs of both sides in this theatre are about equal. The US will be more aggressive than when in Probing Attack mode, but will not compromise its basic defences in the theatre.

Superiority - The US has a slight but telling edge in CVs in the theatre. At this point the US should begin attempting to acquire the theatre's primary objective. Defensive garrisons can be stripped down at this point.

Supremacy - The US has a substantial advantage in CVs in the theatre. Defensive garrisons should be limited to holding objective hexes and key staging grounds/resource hexes. The US will use its advantage to acquire all objectives in this theatre and press on to further theatres.

Dominance - No enemy forces of any significance remain in this theatre. The US has acquired all worthwhile objectives in this theatre, and it is primarily a staging area for advancement into further theatres.

When I add the tag "Allied" to any of those above descriptors, that means that the US coordinates with the Allies it cooperates with (CW and France/Free France) and to a lesser extent with USSR and China to achieve the desired result in each theatre.

So, once again, I'll split the post up. On to the next one.

< Message edited by composer99 -- 12/11/2005 12:20:25 AM >


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Post #: 27
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 1:53:39 AM   
composer99


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Correction: Off to a Christmas party, THEN when I get back on to the actual objective break-downs.

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Post #: 28
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 4:06:29 AM   
Greyshaft


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quote:

ORIGINAL: composer99
Correction: Off to a Christmas party, THEN when I get back on to the actual objective break-downs.
You're planning to go to a Christmas Party and THEN work on writing a strategy? Don't drink too much Eggnog or your name might be Husband E. Kimmel


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Post #: 29
RE: AI for MWiF - USA - 12/10/2005 9:22:16 AM   
composer99


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quote:

You're planning to go to a Christmas Party and THEN work on writing a strategy? Don't drink too much Eggnog or your name might be Husband E. Kimmel


No worries there - since I ended up staying long after to watch the hockey game between the Ottawa Senators (my team) and the Vancouver Canucks (which, having been played in Vancouver ended at 0h15 local time) and then sat around watching TV with the hosts' son (a friend of mine) and some attractive women friends of his, I've decided that some sleep must intercede between the party and the strategic write-ups.

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