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Keeping America out of the war


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So it appears that if the axis use diplomacy and avoid provoking the US to mobilize, that the axis can pretty much take out China and the USSR before the US and Britain can get a chance to turn the tide of the war.

I am playing a game right now where that is occurring. It is beginning of 1941 US mobilization is at 3% due to diplomacy hits and limiting declaration of wars till after a diplomacy hit. The game is still in progress, but right now the allies are in a deep strategic disadvantage.

Is there anything in the system that mobilizes the US automatically like the USSR?

So far it is looking like a brilliant strategy for the Axis, as the allies don't have the MPP's to challenge the diplomacy of the axis early in the war. Also, because of the low US mobilization value, the US has really no MPP's. So even when they come into the war, it will take at least a year to bring any combat power to bare. By that time, the USSR and China our pretty much toast even if you have a good defense established. Oh, and by limiting the aggression the Russian mobilization sucks too.

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The USA will incrementally increase their mobilization in 1941.

As of Jan 1, 1941 - Total mobilization of 1-2% per turn

As of Jun 22, 1941 - Total mobilization of 6-9% per turn

As of Aug 1, 1941 - Total mobilization of 7-11% per turn

As of Dec 7, 1941 - Total mobilization of 10-15% per turn

There might be other events that will assist in mobilization as well but these increases are automatic.

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- USSR will also gain mobilization % each turn in 1941 as historical Barbarossa approaches.

- The diplomacy against Allied Majors is a good strategy but has its downsides because of the costs (150 MPPs per chit).

- There are several ways to counter it:

1) defensive: use UK chits against Axis ones while investing in UK industry

2) "attack" first by investing at least 2 chits quickly on USA or USSR

(you'll have a decent chance to hit early despite the low 10% chance with 2 chits)

3) put 3 chits in industry for USA and USSR early to reduce the MPPs hit

4) keep Axis busy enough so they can't invest in diplomacy :D

- Remember that buying 3 axis diplo chits on a major equals 2 panzer units or a carrier and delays tech investment if done early. So it will weaken Barbarossa or the Pacific offensive.

- Also majors won't have big swings like minors (with sometimes 30% diplo hits ouch) so as long as you stay in the diplo race it's manageable. 1 UK chit vs 2 Axis chits (or 2 vs 3 and so on) will be only a 5% chance to hit for Axis.

- Of course there is a lot of mind game available there:

1) stock MPPs as axis to invest 4-5 chits the same turn so UK has to decide if it's worth catching up.

2) invest 2x75 on a minor to fool Allies thinking you used a 150 chit

3) invest with Japan early just to burn UK MPPs while preparing Sealion with Germany

4) and other devious evil plans ;)

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So far in 1941, there hasn't been any increase in US mobilization and it is June! This is despite Germany declaring war on Yugoslavia and advancing in Egypt. I am wondering if this version of the game kept the US mobilization in place as crispy131313 mentioned in an earlier reply. It doesn't appear to be the case so far.

Strategiclayabout's comments are good, but the problem is the allies can't match the axis MPP's to diplomacy early in the war. One of the bigger problems facing the allies if there is low US mobilization is:

1. No MPP lend-lease convoys.

2. US has little to put towards industry as MPPs are low.

3. No destroyers for bases. So this makes it tougher for the English to protect convoy lanes.

So far a great strategy.

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Actually I oversimplified my earlier percentages. The first 2 only trigger if USSR is Active, but their are USA jumps guaranteed beginning in August these relate to the USA Oil Embargo against Japan. Soon you will see jumps in USA activation, especially quicker if USSR is attacked.

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- It's true it's hard for UK to keep up the MPPs race. It seems that strategy is spreading lately as at least one hit is nearly guaranteed when Japs diplo USA first usually halving their mobilization %. For USA/UK/USSR you can disband some starting research chits to invest in industry early.

*

- Maybe it would be interesting to consider increasing diplo chits cost vs Majors for Japan. After all they pay 100 vs 75 for minors but 150 vs 150 for Majors. Not sure but if I remember well it was 200 at some point but nobody used jap diplomacy vs Majors then because it was too costly :P .

- Then perhaps make it 175 for Japan and/or 125 for UK. Would somehow make sense that Japs have more difficulties to "persuade" USSR and USA of their "pacifism" than UK given raltions between those countries :D .

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One update since I meet the exact same situation in the ladder. Was only thinking about japanese/german chits and forgot Italy as they start neutral ^^ .

- Japan invested chit after chit on USA (now 5-1=4) got 1 unlucky hit to bring USA mobilization down to 8% in March 40 (Benelux invaded, Denmark annexed, Norway neutral, Indochina invaded, Thailand neutral).

- I used counter diplomacy with UK (4 chits, industry 1) but always trailed behind and now Italy just invested 1 chit too (I kept Benito out of war as long as possible). USA got industry 1 this turn to reduce losses but I'm still starving.

*

- So maybe we have problem here as if Axis diplo USA from the start the probability they will fall to 0% mobilization is near 100% even if UK cancel all research chits on turn 1 to buy 2 diplo chits early.

- UK has 8 chits and can even out Japan+Italy (5+3) but Germany is still there to tip the scales. Furthermore that means no tech or unit investments for at least 6 monthes while Axis will always have the lead and a chance to hit.

- Of course there is a cost for Axis but I find it only gives bad choices to UK. If you play the diplo race you can't do anything else. If you don't USA won't produce any MPP for at least a year if not two with the late war entry and Axis will get this result for only 450MPPs.

Well at least USA won't go below 0% :D .

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So as a side note to the axis strategy to keep the US mobilization low with diplomacy. The Russian mobilization stays low too it seems. If the axis employ this strategy they usually won't invade and take out the Low Countries in Europe or advance in Egypt until the end of 1940 or if they get a US diplomacy hit. The side advantage of this is that the USSR doesn't see 20% mobilization or more until 1941. By that time the Russians are hard pressed to build anything but divisional units to slow down the German blitzkrieg. So even with a few less units in invade Russia, the axis are way better off to throw diplomacy chits at the US. Oh, and keep in mind if the alies do anything that hurts US mobilization, i.e. Invade Norway, declare war on any neutral country, or any of the other negative action items the Allies are toast.

So the US gets very little MPP's for pretty much two years. This of course is going to make it hard for the US to defend the west coast fleets from Attack.

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- One thing I forgot: you can try to use chinese or french diplo chits to help but it's very hard given the cost and the lower 3% chance.

- In my ladder game Axis did as you say waiting first diplo hit on USA to invade Holland.

And yes it makes it pretty impossible to defend Hawaï and the West Coast if USA fall at 0%.

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Another solution would be to try to enact the USA Lend Lease Agreement at it's historical date. In the latest mod I have up on the repository I included a mobilization script in March 1941 with a pop up of "Rosevelt Declaring USA to be the arsenal of democracy" and a big jump in mobilization (30%) to get them over the lend lease hump. I don't think any amount of diplomacy was going to stop the USA from getting involved at least to this extent.

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Hi again there :) ,

- Ah there is one thing UK can do against that strategy but it makes for an entirely different game: if USA mobilization is at 0% that means UK has more or less free hands to attack minors including those in the Pacific (think Ireland, North Africa, Brunei, DEI...).

- So it's a balance between investing in diplomacy to get a favorable "burn rate" for MPPs and/or trying to last enough to get those free destroyers. Axis need at least 2 diplo chits = 10% to have decent chances of a diplo hit then another chit to keep pressure going (that's 3 chits for 450 MPPs).

- So UK have 3 options I think:

1) invest nothing and focus on its own build up to attack high yield minors

2) invest 1-3 chits to delay hits/build US industry for later/burn more jap MPPs

3) invest at least 4 chits to force Italy or Germany in

Thanks for the strategic brainstorm 4th Bn 66th Reg and crispy131313 ;) .

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Hi

This is an interesting discussion and it does make me wonder if we should reduce Japan's diplomacy chits from 5 to 3 chits, and increase their cost for influencing a Major to 175.

I think this change would mean that this Axis strategy would still be possible, but a bit harder to do.

The Japanese weren't renowned for their diplomacy, so I think this should feel a bit more correct too.

How does that sound?

Bill

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- Update from my game: Axis stopped diplomacy vs US at 5 chits for Japan and 1 for Italy with 1 japanese hit (vs 5 chits for UK). USA mobilisation gained 6% to 14% thanks to Vichy allowing the destroyers for bases event to kick in (October 40).

- So it's possible to counter though it weakens UK for a good while. I invested in diplomacy as UK because I was quite convinced there wouldn't be any Sealion but otherwise...

@ Bill:

- The 175 MPPs would be nice I think but going from 5 to 3 chits may cause problem with axis diplomacy against minors. That would left only Italy to make a difference (UK = Germany + Japan = 8 chits). However China/France can still chip in taking some risks to cancel that.

- By stocking MPPs to invest in one go Axis can gain several turns of advantage though. 8 chits = 40% the first turn if UK counters right away that would decrease by 5% each turn vs Majors but 10% against Minors (assuming UK income is around 150 MPPs).

*

- So maybe:

1) reduce only by 1 chit from 5 to 4 (20% chance with all chits)

2) keep 5 chits but at 4% chance instead of 5% (20% chance as above)

4% would put them between USSR/China (3%) and UK/USA (5%)

- It would be 45% chance with all german chits so you would need at least 1 italian chit to get 50%.

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- One thing to consider in favor of only 3 chits though is Allies can only guess where Axis chits are invested before the first hit and even then there is no guarantee all chits are on the same country.

- Then even with only 8 chits for Germany + Japan Axis has a great diplomatic punch for first hit but the windows can close pretty fast against minors while 1 hit can be enough to cripple USA/USSR economy for a while.

Would be glad to hear other opinions on your proposal :cool: .

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I wouldnt worry too much. If the axis player has invested 600 or more mpps in diplomacy then yes: the USA will probably not enter until spring 1942 but your Red Army will have an easier time of it. This will especially be the case if the axis is pushing hard in Africa. If not, then put the UK onto the offensive in Africa and be prepared to fall a long way back in Russia. I dont think it is quite the game changer you put it as unless the axis has invested only one or two chits (up to 300mpps) and got very lucky.

Out of interest - who are you playing?

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Hi Catacol :) ,

(playing Isno if hat question was for me)

- Germany didn't invest in diplomacy and did nothing in Africa safe for a paradrop to grab Tunis (?). Vichy came late (Paris left open) but Hitler is going for the french gold so I'm not sure Russia (21% mobilization at the end of 1940) will have it that easy :P .

- UK already on the offensive in Africa but given the diplo cost to keep USA afloat (5 chits or 750MPPs...) I'm lacking everything. Axis also have subs lvl 2 already so not getting the free DDs would have been a disaster.

*

- That said I agree we can just wait to see how it goes in ongoing games. Still nice to brainstorm a bit about diplomacy strategies. One I forgot is UK can let USA go and use chits on USSR to try its luck or say a more affordable Turkey.

- Anyway the main concern was if Axis gets two hits on USA and takes it down to 0% mobilization early. There isn't much Allies can do to get out of this hole. I think creating Vichy raises it again (USA back to 14% but then only 15% with french gold event, no luck) but otherwise Yankees will mostly be sitting on their hands.

- UK can still go on a minor country rampage and grab Ireland and some others but dowing Thailand or Brunei will lead to war with Japs: very dangerous to do that early with USA bleeding MPPs.

EDIT:

A small update to say Isno got an italian GAR in Fort-de-France port raising USA mobilization to 18%.

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It's an interesting discussion - agreed. Diplomacy can be the big game changer as it is all down to chance...

I wonder whether the system could be overhauled and made to work like tech. I think it is difficult investing diplo chits on a cancel out basis - especially so for the axis from mid game onwards because they will always be outbid by the allies. Why not create a function where a chit invested creates a "hit" % like tech that once it is up over 40 has a chance of clicking and by the time it gets to 99 it will definitely click. Both sides could invest in the US - but both sides would be guaranteed some kind of activation swing in the long term in return for their investment. Currently diplo is only used sparingly early game - and yet it could add a lot to later game situations if countries like Sweden or Spain or Greece etc were brought in by a guaranteed return for investment rather than the aggregate % investment method currently on offer with never a guarantee of a return. Also - by putting a baseline % level that has to be reached before a diplo chit can click it will stop any dodgy players from doing a massive investment in mid 1940 and then replaying the turn over and over until they get the big hit that tips Spain or wherever their way. I am sure this has been done - unfortunately - and there is something slightly wrong with the concept that a diplomatic campaign against a country could produce a major swing instantly anyway.

A bit radical, but maybe worth a think...

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