!!!NEVER INVADE WHERE THEY ARE STRONGEST OR WHERE THEY EXPECT!!!
1. First check and see how many troop ships you have on your production screen. You should have over 200 troop ships and 1000's of cargo ships.
2. Once the ground phase starts move your Apmphib. HQ's to the ports where your going to launch them from. Make sure commando units are taken back with your transports and reloaded. Preferably you will want larger ports so that you accrue more prep points each turn. Make sure these ports are not damaged, because just a little damage can cause a huge delay in prep points. Make sure your Amphibs are curing their damage
if they have any.
3. Now the hard part. RECON first! Where ever you decide to invade, try to make it as open of terrain as you can. You don't get a free lvl 2 airfield invading certain types of terrain, so choose carefully. Don't invade a port, because it will not become a Temp. port like a non-port hex will. You won't be able to unload troops nearly as fast because the ports capacity doesn't change when you invade it. Normally I will pick small ports close by to invade near as if the amphib hq is next to a small port, and it's not enemy occupied it will automatically repair all damage. Make sure you survey your area well and see where your problems could come from, or how to outflank defensible terrain.
4. Once you've chosen where to invade you have to decide what your invading with. In Italy and France I will use 5-6 amphibs minimum. When you do choose where to invade, try to make it where one TF can supply two or three different beaches, and move the other TF's back to a friendly port. This will help you maintain a higher troop lift capacity since they aren't tied up.
5. When I choose the hexes, I try to place my beaches so that they can't be attacked by more than one or two stacks at once, 3 at the most (best troops go here), and use your airborne units (as divisions, not brigades/regiments unless really necessary) to block the paths to the beaches themselves. They can buy you a turn or two to get enough boots on the beach to keep them.
6. Depending on the port size and how many and what size units will determine how many prep points you can get a turn. There's a chart someone made that tell you how many prep points you get with the port size and unit size factored in. Roughly, if you going to do a proper invasion, your going to need 8-10 weeks of prep (shorter times for bigger ports) time before I will launch. (just a note here, once you don't need amphibs take them back to a port, don't let them just sit in the open) You can also juggle your amphibs from port to port each turn to even out their prep point gains. This helps your smaller ports keep up, but make sure your amphib is in a port at the end of the turn or you lose all the prep points. Same goes for the combat units. Make sure they are with the units you want them to be with the turn before you invade.
7. Set all the ports priorities to 4, set the units to refit, and set their HQ's to priority 4.
8. Your most important hexes your going to want two divisions on your anchors for the invasion. These will probably be beat up the most so make sure they are the best. I usually pull the Canadian Army from England on turn 1 so that as soon as Sicily, Sardinia, and Corsica are being supplied, I move the amphibs back to Africa to prep at non-damaged ports instead of waiting for Sicily ports. Make sure you take those assault engineers from Home Forces Command, and some su's in Canadian 1st Army.
9. In my middle hexes of the invasion site, I like to break down an armored division and use their brigade/regiments with one division. Put SU's in the brigade/regt, normally I like to put one of each type in all three, but that's my preference.
10. Place your airborne targets and if you don't have enough transport in theater move it from England. There's no reason not to borrow planes from England. Place their targets so that they can block axis forces racing to the beach. They can buy you a turn or two and by then you should have enough crap to stay on. Re-combine your airborne divisions (take out su's). They fight better and they can retreat when attacked on the first turn of the invasion if they have a hex to retreat to. Brigades/regiments can't retreat, period. If you use them, use them to slow him down, but expect them to be in Ireland the next turn.
11. Before you think about hitting the launch button you need to have your logistical crap-in-one-sock. Before you invade anywhere, you need to be able to project your air power. If your flying more than 10 hexes to reach a patrol area, and the Luftwaffe travels only 5, then that almost multiplies the amount of planes you need to keep naval coverage by double what he has. He can have 500 planes in the area to your 1000, and if he can patrol twice a day (distance) opposed to your one patrol a day, that means it will be close to parity. You can have all the planes in the world, but if they can't make it where they're needed, your going to fail. VERY IMPORTANT: Don't use naval interdiction unless you need it. If you start projecting higher numbers in an area it's kind of a give away, but I also use naval patrols to spoof the axis player, keep him guessing (my version of Operation Fortitude).
12. Hopefully it didn't take too long to take Sicily, Sardinia, and Corsica because you really need their airfields to cover your invasion of Italy. As soon as you take them, upgrade all the airfields, set them to priority 4, and make sure you have a HQ on the islands with construction units. Takes about a month to a month and a half to get the airfields in shape. Also start running Air superiority missions over Corsica and Sardinia so any recon planes sneaking over will get shot down.
13. As your airfields grow make sure you continue to move your air assets into place. Move airborne troops to Corsica and or Sardinia to be close to their transports and move the transports over when you have room so they are in easy range.
14. Hopefully during all the previous steps you have been conducting your recon flights, but don't hit the area your going to invade too heavily as this may give it away also. I can usually tell from player airstrikes, when and where they will land, but a lot of that can't be helped.
15. Also you don't need to push 8th Army and take vp casualties. Just use them to hold his units down in the toe. One they can't be used against you on your invasion turn, and if he tarries too long they will be toast after I describe how to stop their escape.
16. Once you can start taking out every port and rail yard from Rome south. Start doing just rail way interdiction and rail yards with tactical air and let the bombers take out the ports/rail yards. Make sure you check the actual air doctrine setup for each HQ to be sure they are bombing what you want bombed. Don't leave it to the ai.
17. The easiest way to destroy those rail yards and ports is to set a bombing mission for two or three days on high intensity. If you do one every 2 days, you can hit 3 ports a turn with 15th AF, and about two ports with tactical air if you want along with rails (You can't fly everyplane everyday is why you need to stagger them and you don't need to bomb small targets everyday). The goal here is to start chocking his rail system up, forcing his supply to
dry up south of where you hit at. Make the target area on size 0 for maximum damage to that hex. The larger the area, the less bombs fall per square football field.
18. If he has any planes in the area (don't waste strategic bombers unless you feel it's necessary) and in tactical strike range, you need to clean out the infestation. The further you make him fly to interdict you, the better off you will be. France isn't so bad, but in Italy it is imperative to have air and sea control over the beaches.
19. Slowly you can strangle his rail supply, and you can slowly walk your air directives towards your actual invasion sites so that they converge where you want them the turn you invade.
20. On the turn you invade your air setup is the most important thing that you can do, so don't leave it to a computer, and don't waste but one air directive hitting units. You just need some disruption, the prize is making sure you've locked the area down so he can't get off an concentrated attack at any one place on the turn you invade.
< Message edited by meklore61 -- 1/14/2015 6:10:54 PM >