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How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 1:36:45 AM   
mdsmall

 

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I am playing through my first game of War in Europe as the Axis and am at a loss to figure out how to capture Malta from the British (as strongly recommended in the Game Manual). There is a 10 strength British anti-aircraft unit on the island, currently at supply level 1. I have suppressed both ports on the island to 0 a couple of turns ago and the supply of the town is zero, so I am not sure where the AA unit is getting 1 supply. Bombardment by Italian ships only makes sound effects and results in the occasional point loss to my ships. Bombing with planes from an Italian aircraft carrier had no effect. I then tried bombing with a medium bomber unit and only succeeded in losing one strength point from my planes. I brought up a tactical bomber as well, but because the AA unit still has an entrenchment strength of 2, the combat prediction shows no effect. I even tried amphibious assaults by two land units to no effect - both had to return to port (with the MPPs spent to load them on transports down the tubes). What do I have to do get the enemy supply to 0 and start inflicting permanent losses on the AA unit?
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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 3:57:56 AM   
Platoonist


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To effectively reduce Malta, you are probably going to have to bring in all the starting German bombers as well and a HQ to boost them. You will have to use air power to kill the AA unit posted there, even if you take losses in return. If you use naval bombardment, it'd better be exclusively battleships as the other types aren't too effective. It does require quite a commitment of German air forces. which may (or may not) impact other fronts these planes may be needed at. Which is why the Axis in the real deal decided against taking it over.

It will take 2-4 turns. The unit won't take alot of damage until the supply is at 0. Then the unit will go down bit by bit.

That is also why you need to maintain a blockade on the hex near the two ports: that prevents the unit from re-supplying and reinforcing through the ports. You don't have to bomb the ports to zero, just make sure there is a unit next to both ports at the end of each of your turn.



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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 6:41:31 AM   
El_Condoro

 

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As well, it might be worth starting Ground Attack 2 tech ASAP in preparation.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 6:45:49 AM   
mdsmall

 

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Thanks for the very fast and helpful reply. I have a couple of follow-up questions.

1) Do you have any idea why the supply for the AA unit would be 1 when the ports and the town are at zero? Perhaps there is a lag time, but anywhere else on the board, once a unit has no access to a supply source, it immediately goes to zero.

2) Are medium bombers and tactical bombers sufficient for the task? Or does it require building heavy bombers as well?

3) The only way I could find to get eyes on the British unit there was to attempt an amphibious assault. Until then, I could see that there was an AA unit on the hex when I tried to bomb it, but had no idea about its strength or its supply status. Is there any other way to carry out recon against this unit short of attempting another amphibious assault?

I have a couple more general questions about amphibious and airborne assaults but I will put those in another post.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 6:51:06 AM   
El_Condoro

 

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1) Not sure on that one
2) TBs best in my experience but the MB (and even fighters if you're desperate) can reduce the AA shots (2) so that the TBs can do their thing.
3) This is a frustrating side effect of not allowing naval units to spot ground units. Best you can do is spot it with a bomber and count the explosions to get some idea of its remaining strength.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 7:27:17 AM   
The Land

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: mdsmall

Thanks for the very fast and helpful reply. I have a couple of follow-up questions.

1) Do you have any idea why the supply for the AA unit would be 1 when the ports and the town are at zero? Perhaps there is a lag time, but anywhere else on the board, once a unit has no access to a supply source, it immediately goes to zero.

2) Are medium bombers and tactical bombers sufficient for the task? Or does it require building heavy bombers as well?

3) The only way I could find to get eyes on the British unit there was to attempt an amphibious assault. Until then, I could see that there was an AA unit on the hex when I tried to bomb it, but had no idea about its strength or its supply status. Is there any other way to carry out recon against this unit short of attempting another amphibious assault?




Re 1: It's getting the supply from somewhere - are you completely sure Malta isn't at Supply 1?

2: Yes, though you do need battleships to reduce Malta's supply. T

3: Yup, that's correct - air units give limited recon and ships none at all on land. You are in a sense flying blind. But 2-3 turns of intensive bombardment will do the trick, and your casualties will only be high on the first turn. Blockade the ports and bombard the land hex with BBs. Then Do 2 'attacks' with fighters to soak the AA fire, then medium bombers to de-entrench and reduce readiness, then tactical bombers to inflict damage.


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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 8:12:48 AM   
Platoonist


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I always thought it would be sweet that if you had one of those massive rail guns (range three) available that was teched-up a bit, you could maybe use it to lob shells at Malta from Syracuse in Sicily. But, unfortunately those monsters only operate on railroads and you can't rail move them over the Straits of Messina to Sicily.




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< Message edited by Platoonist -- 8/11/2020 8:45:49 AM >


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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 9:51:35 AM   
Torplexed


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In SC 2 World at War, with the different map scale you can use heavy or rocket artillery to shell Malta from Syracuse. They're only two hexes apart in that game. I suppose air recon would have to spot the target first.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 7:45:10 PM   
Taxman66


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FYI, Malta has 1 supply because it (or rather the town... presumably Valletta) regenerates/repairs 1 point between turns. You can't stop it as you can't put land units next to it.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 7:50:10 PM   
Elessar2


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Medium bombers (at lower tech levels) have the advantage of de-entrenching enemies (tho tacs will catch up w/ increasing tech). Hit it with those first; if the Germans bought one for the Battle of France with the one Italy gets that will be 4 fort levels lost.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 8:35:28 PM   
mdsmall

 

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Using a rail gun would solve a lot of problems. Can you transport a rail gun by sea? If so, you could ship it from a mainland Italian port and disembark it in Syracuse. However, I don't feel like spending the MPPs to buy one and then discover I can't get it to the one hex where I need it - so if anyone knows the answer, please share!

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 8:38:17 PM   
The Land

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: mdsmall

Using a rail gun would solve a lot of problems. Can you transport a rail gun by sea? If so, you could ship it from a mainland Italian port and disembark it in Syracuse. However, I don't feel like spending the MPPs to buy one and then discover I can't get it to the one hex where I need it - so if anyone knows the answer, please share!



You just need to bombard it by air and sea. Ignore the rail gun, the correct method has been explained several times now.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 8:44:59 PM   
Will952

 

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Taking Malta is relatively straightforward; no rail gun required. You will however need 2-3 Tac bombers, 1-2 Medium bombers and an HQ to support them, plus your choice of Paratroopers (cheaper) or an Amphib corps (with the ability to attack it might save you a turn of bombing and get you a quicker capture). Don't bring any Maritime or Strat Bombers - they won't do much.

1) Use the Italian navy to reduce Malta fortress supply to 0 (only Battleships can do this so don't bother using Cruisers, they'll just take losses for nothing)
2) Place 1 naval unit (sub is often convenient) adjacent to both ports. You don't need to bomb the ports; just having 1 naval unit adjacent to the ports will prevent the land unit being able to gain supply from either port.
3) Spend 2, or if unlucky, 3, turns bombing Malta in the order of Medium bombers first, then Tacs. Repeat until AA unit destroyed. Thanks to your actions in step (2) above, it won't be able to reinforce.
4) Float your Paratroopers daintily into their new home. Or if you prefer, send your amphib.

If you want to be extra fancy, if you bring a Maritime Bomber, you can use this first to trigger both of the AA unit's 2 intercepts. Your Tacs and Medium bombers will then be free to unleash unmolested, reducing their losses significantly. The Maritime Bomber is very cheap to reinforce by comparison.

If you plan for a relatively swift capture of Malta (i.e. in 1940) then it's recommended to invest in Ground Attack ASAP as Tacs don't de-entrench without some tech upgrades, and this will slow things down considerably.

< Message edited by Will952 -- 8/11/2020 8:45:36 PM >

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/11/2020 8:56:50 PM   
mdsmall

 

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Thanks to all for this very precise advice. It is an interesting tactical problem, as it requires the co-ordination of so many different elements of the game - supply, entrenchment, spotting, naval bombardment, air attacks (preferably by three different kinds of air units), tech levels and command. Now I just have to spend the MPPs and move the units into position to make it all work!




< Message edited by mdsmall -- 8/11/2020 9:13:54 PM >

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/13/2020 5:17:31 AM   
Tanaka


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Will952

Taking Malta is relatively straightforward; no rail gun required. You will however need 2-3 Tac bombers, 1-2 Medium bombers and an HQ to support them, plus your choice of Paratroopers (cheaper) or an Amphib corps (with the ability to attack it might save you a turn of bombing and get you a quicker capture). Don't bring any Maritime or Strat Bombers - they won't do much.

1) Use the Italian navy to reduce Malta fortress supply to 0 (only Battleships can do this so don't bother using Cruisers, they'll just take losses for nothing)
2) Place 1 naval unit (sub is often convenient) adjacent to both ports. You don't need to bomb the ports; just having 1 naval unit adjacent to the ports will prevent the land unit being able to gain supply from either port.
3) Spend 2, or if unlucky, 3, turns bombing Malta in the order of Medium bombers first, then Tacs. Repeat until AA unit destroyed. Thanks to your actions in step (2) above, it won't be able to reinforce.
4) Float your Paratroopers daintily into their new home. Or if you prefer, send your amphib.

If you want to be extra fancy, if you bring a Maritime Bomber, you can use this first to trigger both of the AA unit's 2 intercepts. Your Tacs and Medium bombers will then be free to unleash unmolested, reducing their losses significantly. The Maritime Bomber is very cheap to reinforce by comparison.

If you plan for a relatively swift capture of Malta (i.e. in 1940) then it's recommended to invest in Ground Attack ASAP as Tacs don't de-entrench without some tech upgrades, and this will slow things down considerably.


I could have sworn you had to have two naval units to blockade a port? Or is this different in WAW vs WIE?

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/13/2020 5:29:43 AM   
Torplexed


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tanaka




I could have sworn you had to have two naval units to blockade a port? Or is this different in WAW vs WIE?


Two different concepts close to each other in the manual on page 79 .

Having two naval units adjacent to a port will reduce its strength by one point per turn---7.15 Besieging Resources

Any port that has an enemy naval unit to it will not provide supply to friendly land units in its supply range---7.16 Port Supply to Land Forces.


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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/13/2020 5:19:54 PM   
mdsmall

 

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Hi - I followed the playbook as spelled out by Will952 and others and it worked like a charm. The British AA unit was destroyed during the third turn of bombardment by three Italian battleships, two German medium bombers, two German tactical bombers and one Italian maritime bomber. My only casualties were a couple of strength points on the battleships from shore bombardment against the town of Valetta. The maritime bomber was ideal for using up the British AA flak - It managed to evade any damage every time.

The only footnote of advice I would add is to remember that once you seize Malta as the Axis, it will be four turns before the ports there are back up to 5 point strength, enabling you to transport out whatever unit you used to take it.



< Message edited by mdsmall -- 8/18/2020 2:47:02 PM >

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/13/2020 6:28:02 PM   
FOARP

 

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Anyone know why land bombardments by battleships aren't modelled as artillery attacks?

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/13/2020 7:16:22 PM   
The Land

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: FOARP

Anyone know why land bombardments by battleships aren't modelled as artillery attacks?


Do you mean in terms of the mechanism (lobbing individually-counted shells without fear of taking damage), or the effects (dealing de-entrenchment), or both?

Either way I think the answer is because it would be easy to make battleship attack overpowered. The Allies have a lot of battleships, and anything that increased their performance would easy to exploit...

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/14/2020 10:48:48 AM   
FOARP

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: The Land


quote:

ORIGINAL: FOARP

Anyone know why land bombardments by battleships aren't modelled as artillery attacks?


Do you mean in terms of the mechanism (lobbing individually-counted shells without fear of taking damage), or the effects (dealing de-entrenchment), or both?

Either way I think the answer is because it would be easy to make battleship attack overpowered. The Allies have a lot of battleships, and anything that increased their performance would easy to exploit...


Both/either. Yeah I think there's a risk that this might just lead to players parking their battleships off the coast of any particular combat and just shelling non-stop BUT this is not exactly ahistorical either (Soviet battleships in the defence of Leningrad/Crimea, German battleships off the Baltic coast, UK/US battleships in the Med and Normandy etc.), and the risk of air-attack leading to the loss of a valuable unit and a boost to enemy morale is a counter to that.

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RE: How do you capture Malta? - 8/15/2020 5:55:36 AM   
Tanaka


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Torplexed


quote:

ORIGINAL: Tanaka




I could have sworn you had to have two naval units to blockade a port? Or is this different in WAW vs WIE?


Two different concepts close to each other in the manual on page 79 .

Having two naval units adjacent to a port will reduce its strength by one point per turn---7.15 Besieging Resources

Any port that has an enemy naval unit to it will not provide supply to friendly land units in its supply range---7.16 Port Supply to Land Forces.



Ah gotcha thanks!

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