Chickenboy: I hear you. Believe me, I hear you. Sumatra will be tough for many reasons, as we discussed previously at some length perhaps six months ago game time. I also agree Brad might not be giving this the attention it deserves, though that might change at any moment, or he may be fooling me. I'm continuing to prepare to be prepared to strike, if that makes sense. I want to be ready to go if I think the opportunity is there. But whether or not it will be there, and when, is still up for debate.
Wake Island: BB Ise paid a visit, doing some damage, mainly to my Marine regiment. My CD and Combat Engineers are in good shape, with a combined AV of about 70, so they'll try a deliberate attack tomorrow. A lone Allied xAK is about two days out on a suicide run. I'm still trying to draw that inside straight, though the odds are very, very, very long now.
Oz: Allied units are busy as bees in an around Daly Waters as I try to configure some things while Brad seems to be snoozing. The Allied carriers are a day or two out of Hobart for refueling. From there they go west, probably stopping momentarily at Albany, before providing cover for the "snap" invasion of Exmouth.
India: The Allies take an almost-vacant Akyab. Recon didn't show anything there, but there was a very small remnant unit that gave way under an assault by Chindits. The last Allied base in the southern part of India will fall to para assault tomorrow. That leaves just Calcutta and a few other bases on the mainland. Recon of Male Island will begin in a day or two. I expect to find it vacant; if not, that will be a targte of invasion within two weeks.
Points: The Allied recapture of so many bases in India, especially Madras, has dropped the IJ score from 34k to 33k. The Allies have 12k. The japanese will lsoe another 2.5k in India within weeks - mainly at Calcutta, Colombo, and Trincomalee. So the score will be something like 31k to perhaps 13k before the end of the year (barring a big naval battle swinging things wildly). What an immense difference 2.5 months has made in this game. If you don't believe me, check out where the Japanese were in early September in this AAR.
It does not matter where. Sooner or later you have to stick your foot into the tar baby. Wherever you attack in early to mid 43 is going to draw a hornets nest of response. You gotta do it somewhere just to draw the Japanese player into an attritional campaign. However, it has to be a place where you can support it with land bases. The Japanese fleet is just too strong until you get your flood of new carriers around 7/43. Sumatra proper is risky as there is no nearby land bases to support your beacheads. A major defeat of you fleet (even trading ships) will act to cut you off from supply. The only viable choices that I see are the most obvious, north from Darwin, the Solomon's chain or perhaps an advance in the North Pacific.
I suppose it depends on how well your opponent manages production but I am amazed at the strenght of the Japanese air force in 9/43 in my game.
I am the Holy Roman Emperor and am above grammar.
Sigismund of Luxemburg