Two years ago, I really wasn't looking for a new game. Work/Home life was pretty busy for me and finding an opponent whose schedule matches is difficult to do. A person usually doesn't find out that their opponent's schedule isn't real compatible until after the game is started, and by then it is usually too late. Also, there is always the problem of an opponent "disappearing" when the game starts getting into 1943.
When I saw that Cuttlefish was looking for a game, I decided to send him an offer. I knew from his reputation that "disappearing" tricks were not his style, and since he was a fellow Oregonian, I couldn't resist the opportunity. There was never a moment where I regretted my decision!
We soon found that our scheduled meshed fairly well. We were usually able to get in 2 turns on weekdays and multiple turns on weekend. This makes for a game with a very nice pace. The game is more interesting and easier to manage when the pace is decent. Also, given the fact that Cuttlefish is a very honorable, friendly, and fair opponent, I found this game to be the most enjoyable game of WITP I have played.
At the start of the game, I decided to be aggressive from the start. I wanted to hold Guadalcanal earlier and to try and hold Burma. My thinking was that if I didn't have to spend time retaking areas, that I could work towards Japan sooner and maybe take bases before they were garrisoned and their forts built up.
The Guadalcanal buildup had some unintended ramifications that I believe became the turning point of the war. I was using Suva as a "jump off point" for my buildup in the Solomons. About the time I expected Cuttlefish to start his push through the Solomons, I received a intel report that one of his divisions was prepping for Suva. After I saw the report, I couldn't get troops to Suva fast enough. Needless to say, when he tried landing at Suva he was met with a very large garrison and coastal guns. The Suva battle ended up spreading north into the Gilbert/Marshall islands where the Saratoga and the Lexington took on the KB.....and won. I lost the Lex, but sunk or damage a lot of his CVs. It wasn't an intentional battle on my part, I was just trying to get out of his way as I knew the KB was in the area. Cuttlefish zigged when I expected him to zag and our CVTFs ended up within range of each other.
The Burma gambit worked, but only because Cuttlefish wasn't very aggressive towards taking Burma. As he was moving north of Moulmein towards Rangoon, I landed a couple of Divisions at Moulmein, cutting off his main attack force. This forced him to pullback and regroup and allowed me time to garrison Burma. From there, it became a stalemate until I was strong enough to push southward. It is not a tactic that I think I could get away with a second time.
I did very little buildup in Alaska, and wish I had. Some pressure on Japan from the east late in the war would have help a lot.
Overall, I stayed ahead of historic timeline, however, in early '44 (I believe) I had stopped advancing on all fronts for about 6 months as I was regrouping and juggling troops so that the troops I needed were where they were suppose to be. This delay ended up hurting me in the long run. The delay was a direct result of poor advance planning on my part.
Somethings I learned:
- Allied Battleships have "targets" painted on this hulls.
- Allied CVEs also have "targets" painted on their hulls and it doesn't take much to sink them.
- Two allied CVs CAN take on KB and win, but I suspect they would not win very often.
- Prepping for targets is VERY important to minimize losses, especially if they will be doing amphib landings....even on an lightly garrisoned base.
Quite often, during the game, Cuttlefish was able to get a SFTF within the same hex of my CVTF, but each time, my CVTF was able to disengage.
I would post some data pictures, but they wouldn't tell much more of the story differently then the ones Cuttlefish posted, other then my top ace. My top ace was G. Boyington with 19 kills.
To Cuttlefish: Excellent game my friend! Looking forward to the rematch.
"When I said I would run, I meant 'away' ". - Orange