From: Fairbanks, Alaska
I started this mod a few days ago with a friend and we are having a lot of fun, although I had a very rude awakening as the Japanese player. Sending KB to Pearl was a huge mistake, at least for me, with all those new Allied Air units scattered around the Philippines, and the DEI, and those damn French at Kwangchowan. I'm curious as to what others do with KB now the the Allies have so many more aircraft all over the map.
Having the Soviets active on turn one is also a nice twist. It is so rare that I play deep enough into a game where they join and I was always the Allies in those games. Now playing as an inexperienced Japanese player I have a whole additional front to contend with. We set up some house rules though that the Soviets must stay on defense until Nov '42 to reflect conditions in Europe and no Japanese advance passed Ulan Bator & Chita since Japan had to desire or benefit to conquering deep into Russia.
I'm not sure how far we'll make it into the game due to time constraints, but it certainly is a nice twist on an old game. I just wanted to thank everyone for their contributions to this mod. Since we'll probably never get a new War in the Pacific, or at least one this complex, these mods keep the game alive and add new fun.
Some Focus Pacific specific tips:
Don't be afraid to reorganize your day 1 Japanese strikes. Both Manilla and Pearl are still vulnerable on day 1 if you commit strikes to them, as the Skyrockets don't show up until day 2.
Kwangchowan is annoying but is also incredibly vulnerable to naval bombardment. The shore guns there are strong, but nothing that a couple of battleships can't handle. Damaging the airfields here will make the base much less of a thorn in your side. You'll want to take out Kwangchowan quickly, as the French have some small aircraft production facilities here that will continue to crank out aircraft unless you take it out. Luckily, you will have lots of troops in the area from your invasion of Hong Kong.
The Soviets are both very strong and very vulnerable at the same time. Their tank divisions and mechanized divisions can be very hard to take on, and their artillery is beastly, but the rail line that connects their ports to the central Soviet Union is hard to defend along its entire length. Also check out the oil production of the Soviet Union. You can pick up nearly as much oil production by isolating Sakhalin and taking the Soviet bases there as you can by taking Palembang. This carries little risk, as the Soviet Navy is not only tiny, but is also nearly defenseless against your Betties and Nells.
You also have a lot more naval airpower at Truk and Tininan. While the allies have more and better fighters than in stock - the P-50 and Morane MS.410 both being capable early-war airframes - you have enough Zeroes with top notch pilots that you can still gain early air superiority over any theater you'd like, even if, unlike stock, you can't be strong in the air everywhere.
Despite the additional allied aircraft, nothing can touch a 6-carrier KB, even in Focus Pacific. With all of the new carriers that you get in Focus Pacific as the Japanese, you can support more invasions more aggressively, but keep an eye on both the aircraft you see from the allied carriers and their upgrades. The allied CAVs and CLVs are not a threat, even to your escort carriers, whose CAP will take their strikes apart with ease. However, once those flight-deck cruisers upgrade to CVLs, you'll probably want to be a bit more cautious.
As General Patton mentioned, I'm very close to a new update, with just some final art assets, and you may want to start over with that. While it doesn't throw a lot of new toys your way as a Japanese player, the new update improves Japanese aircraft upgrade paths and makes a lot of quality of life improvements when it comes to aviation support, especially in Manchuko.