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Thread: Five for Fighting - How Hockey Saved the Allies - An FtM AAR

  1. #121
    Corporal TiFlo's Avatar
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    This is a really enjoyable read. Besides, as a newcomer to HOI, it's helping me a lot through my first game for which I chose Canada (pretty safe, somewhat easy going into the war, etc.). My first action of the war saw my troops perform a textbook landing in Sardinia in the Spring of 1940 followed by a proper seizing of the island last night. Ten divisions, a mixed bunch of infantry, mountain troops and fast armor (35000 men) against two Italian infantry divisions. Better safe than sorry, Eh?

  2. #122
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NapoleonComple View Post
    Now do it with Cuba.

    Dear Lord above, the casualties! At this rate you won't need the Russians to defeat the Axis; the Brits'll do it themselves!
    They have hockey in Cuba? I do hope the Axis advance into Russia is seriously harmed, though with the numbers on the eastern front it's tough to be sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by friget234 View Post
    It's over 9000!
    There's no way that can be right!

    Quote Originally Posted by croguy View Post
    Oh wow, that's absolutely devastating. This might just be the first proper victory for the Allies.
    I think you're right, not much that I have seen is going on elsewhere, except perhaps at sea.

    Quote Originally Posted by TiFlo View Post
    Subscribed.

    This is a really enjoyable read. Besides, as a newcomer to HOI, it's helping me a lot through my first game for which I chose Canada (pretty safe, somewhat easy going into the war, etc.). My first action of the war saw my troops perform a textbook landing in Sardinia in the Spring of 1940 followed by a proper seizing of the island last night. Ten divisions, a mixed bunch of infantry, mountain troops and fast armor (35000 men) against two Italian infantry divisions. Better safe than sorry, Eh?
    Thanks! Good work on Sardinia. If I was doing this again I'd definitely have grabbed that first.

    Update Tuesday.
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  3. #123
    Field Marshal sprites's Avatar
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    It's over one hundred thousands!
    ... or where you can see the AI at work!
    no more unfinished IN AAR's

  4. #124
    Corporal Adams's Avatar
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    Hilarious and devastating battle outcome.

    If you can hold them off until the U.S.A. joins the war, the real fun begins. You can make use of the objectives system.
    In my experience, in about 7 out of 10 times, the English and Americans do commit major numbers to the set objectives eventually. Both in attack and defence.
    They even capture ports and conduct amphibious landings.

    Good luck!

  5. #125
    General morningSIDEr's Avatar
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    Jaw dropping stuff. I was expecting heavy casualties but nothing like that. And to think if the Axis had simply sat around in Italy and allowed their air force to whittle down Canadian units they'd have been much better off!
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  6. #126
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sprites View Post
    It's over one hundred thousands!
    ... or where you can see the AI at work!
    The AI was brilliant, but I was even more brilliant!

    Quote Originally Posted by Adams View Post
    Hilarious and devastating battle outcome.

    If you can hold them off until the U.S.A. joins the war, the real fun begins. You can make use of the objectives system.
    In my experience, in about 7 out of 10 times, the English and Americans do commit major numbers to the set objectives eventually. Both in attack and defence.
    They even capture ports and conduct amphibious landings.

    Good luck!
    I do have to try the objectives system. Still working on an objective to shoot for though.

    Quote Originally Posted by morningSIDEr View Post
    Jaw dropping stuff. I was expecting heavy casualties but nothing like that. And to think if the Axis had simply sat around in Italy and allowed their air force to whittle down
    Canadian units they'd have been much better off!
    Same here, I was thinking 25,000 might have been overestimating. And very true on the air force, which I need to find a way to counter.

    NOTE - probably switching two a couple updates a week. I've written the Thursday update and I just have to finish the screenshots, and I've played some beyond that, but we're more or less caught up to where I am in the game. So probably Monday/Thursday schedule unless I get ahead by a fair distance.
    I follow Paradox on Twitter and have Johan's photo on my phone for Twitter messages. I also follow the Pope. When the Pontiff tweets, I see the picture and lately I wonder "yes, but is Johan speaking ex cathedra?"
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  7. #127
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Nineteen - And now for Something Completely Different

    Fighting a million-man-army across the Straits of Messina is fun and enjoyable, but eventually one must grow up and move on, mustn't one?

    It's nearly June, 1941, do you know where your Panzers are?



    Running in fear from the might of the Canadian army, that's where! Take the train, guys!

    Germany may have another engagement to head off to. May it all be strategic movement and their fuel supplies run out completely. I'm sure many units have recovered some, but it'll be some time before the later withdrawals have full Org. So I guess the Italians did cost Hitler his best Russian invasion dates, but in Sicily not in the Balkans.

    Son - "Dad, why do I have to grow up and stop fighting the enemy across the Straits of Messina, I like getting a 99% boost against them, when am I going to get that again?"
    Dad - "Okay, son, you can play with your friends again if you want."

    I withdraw my fleets from the straits: "let's try that again, from the top." A day later, and 80 men lost to air attacks, the battle with Croatia was over.



    "Next." Instead we lost another 150 men to air attacks, and tried bombing the enemy ourselves. That's what CAS is for, right? That could have gone better.



    Ouch. Note that 68% Strength. I was going to be seeing that for some time, unfortunately. On the third, the next wave comes.



    With a stacking penalty of 26%, I'm hoping I didn't make a mistake. Still, I want to fight the Axis, and if I can do it with modifiers, why not? I lose 200 men to air attacks, but after a short time, we add 3000 men to the total casualties inflicted.



    On the seventh and 8th, Germany and Croatia attack with 20,000, killing 135 Canadians in addition to the 200 we lose from air attacks, but we kill 1350.

    On the tenth, the Italians try with 20,000. We'd lost yet another 200 to air attacks between ground attacks, but this we quickly defeat, losing 25 killing 375. They keep sending guys in and we keep beating them, it's like that cage match in Spiderman, only no Bruce Campbell. We send our destroyers off to do Convoy raiding while the Mountain Corps holds their tupperware parties for the Axis. On the fifteenth, the Italians try again with 26,000 men.

    We're down to negative 9 manpower, so maybe this game isn't the best use of our troops or our time. Sure, we kill more than we lost, but we're not gonna bleed the Axis dry as fast as they will bleed us dry. We lose 175, and twice that from the air attacks which always accompany ground assaults, and kill 2400 Italians before the battle ends on the seventeenth. Later that same day a single Italian armored division attacks, quickly losing 1000 men to our losses of 26, but we lost another 100 to air attacks. On the 18th, the Italians attack with three armored divisions, still not realizing that iron doesn't float, and lose another 2250 men to my losses of 46 (plus 200 to air attacks) over two days.

    By June 20th, 1941 the Germans have apparently remembered that they have somewhere else to be.



    I lose 550 men to air attacks in the long battle which follows, and notice that my Org is down to low to mid 20s in the defending divisions. We decide to cancel the party and close the straits again.



    It's not just the mountain divisions which are hurting. My Hurricanes are nearing full Org, but haven't recovered any Strength at all.



    I briefly panicked, thinking that Licensed units could never recover strength or something. Silly, I know, but why would my ships repair and not my planes? Not long after I put them on priority and they began to recover Str pretty quickly. Note to self: if it rusts, give it priorty.

    On July 1 I sadly noted that I was now at -11 Manpower. Maybe the Messina Straits games were not my best idea ever. On the 9th, Mengkukuo joined Japan in their local Chinese wars. Somebody write that down before we all forget.

    On July 10th the Italians sent a single Destroyer flotilla to face the four Canadian units and were driven off. July drifted along, and on the 19th the Italians sent their battleship Littorio and a DD flotilla and were again driven off with no ships lost. One of my DDs was down to 43% and went off for repairs. By July 21st, my mountain troops had recovered, so more to spare the navy than anything else, I cleared the Straits again. To be honest, the realization that I might be stupidly losing manpower came more in writing this than when I was playing. I'd taken very few losses from air attacks during the time off, too.



    So, 80,000 against 25,000, but armor crossing the straits. This should not be so bad for us. Our commander is getting to be very good, though preparing a general who is good on defense might not be all we could hope for down the road. Something else I ought to have considered.

    Sure enough, we took 860 losses from air attack before the next event, another tech breakthrough. Mass Assault is now level 4, boosting moral 5% to +20% and Assault chance increased 3% to +12%. I lost another 560 men to air attack, that's 1400 just from this battle, when suddenly a thought occurred to me.



    Ignoring the list of negative modifiers below this graphic, an AA brigade would mean far more to Canada than an AT brigade or even artillery. Better late than never we order one for $35. We lose another 150 men, and the AA won't be done until November. We lose 275 more men, and notice that our ground troops are taking a beating.



    Yes, we're winning yet another fight, but if this keeps up somebody is going to lose an eye.
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  8. #128
    Lt. General eqqman's Avatar
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    Something interesting to note is that Germany has apparently stopped trying to supply those men in the toe and given them all to Italy.

  9. #129
    Field Marshal Baltasar's Avatar
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    I assume that the Red Army will just sweep into Europe with the Axis bleeding dry in Italy... :-/

  10. #130
    Maybe you should build some AAA to stop those evil stuka's, else there will be no one left for the opening of next seasons hockey.

  11. #131
    Lt. General NapoleonComple's Avatar
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    Can't you land on their flanks and cut those axis forces off? Maybe do a logistical bombing?

  12. #132
    General morningSIDEr's Avatar
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    Good and increasingly tense stuff. You are still holding your own but it is proving bloody work. Is there any hope of you defeating this Italian force before they could possibly bleed you dry?
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  13. #133
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eqqman View Post
    Something interesting to note is that Germany has apparently stopped trying to supply those men in the toe and given them all to Italy.
    Excellent point, I had not paid close attention to the little flags on the units. Barbarossa is down a few divisions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Baltasar View Post
    I assume that the Red Army will just sweep into Europe with the Axis bleeding dry in Italy... :-/
    I hope I'm gonna help, anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Surt View Post
    Maybe you should build some AAA to stop those evil stuka's, else there will be no one left for the opening of next seasons hockey.
    Yeah, too many "upper body" and "lower body" injuries. I wonder what a hockey coach would call death, "he's month-to-month with an upper and lower body injury"?

    As for AntiAircraft, I'm on it!

    Quote Originally Posted by NapoleonComple View Post
    Can't you land on their flanks and cut those axis forces off? Maybe do a logistical bombing?
    Flank attacks, I'd love to. Logistical bombing was something I thought of, but you need a bigger bomber than anything I own or am likely to own

    Quote Originally Posted by morningSIDEr View Post
    Good and increasingly tense stuff. You are still holding your own but it is proving bloody work. Is there any hope of you defeating this Italian force before they could possibly bleed you dry?
    Yeah, my manpower is seriously hurting. I think I'm ok holding the strait, but only because Italy fears the British fleet. If it were just Canada, they'd chase me off at sea, wear me down on land, and I'd probably have to flee Sicily.
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  14. #134
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Twenty - First Intermission (How to be Canada)

    Years ago my Dad took my son and I to a hockey game, courtesy of one of the pharmaceutical companies who are always looking for ways to get the attention of physicians. The thing I remember most about the game - other than "luxury boxes are cool!" - was the first intermission. I hadn't previously associated hockey with a fancy dessert tray. Now, of course, we sit down with real fans and practice the proper pronunciation of the first name of the other team's goalie.

    Here's our first intermission. No dessert tray for you guys, just a discussion of the war so far. Cue Hockey Music

    Before we begin I must point out that two of the six current captains on Original Six hockey teams were born and raised in my hometown, a (pretty big) suburb of Rochester, in upstate New York. They both still live here.


    Canada Overview.

    I'll probably repeat some things I've said already, and repeat them again when the game is over, but there are quite a few points which have been running through my mind lately that I want to discuss while they're still fresh. Mostly it's how I would do things differently, but some is an appreciation of the stuff that's gone right.


    What to Build

    - You get three or four Corps, and only if you build basic two brigade divisions. Add specialized brigades over time. You might squeeze a fifth corps out of your manpower later in the war, or I suppose if you manage to conquer enough manpower to matter, but count on a small army. Treat them well. Protect them. These troops are 90% of what you're going to be using to accomplish anything for the entire game. Canada has enough money and resources to run its IC, plus safe access to the US Auction House. All you can expect to run short of is manpower. Any apparent IC shortage is really just a temporary glut of manpower. It will pass.

    - Build Navy and Air Force. This one I'm still working on, but it seems to me that Canada has enough IC to build a decent Navy, meaning one which can protect transports and cause troubles for the enemy (not defeat a real navy). Canada also has enough IC to build a decent Air Force, meaning four squadrons or so. If you don't have a navy, don't expect to hold the Straits of Messina. If you don't have an Air Force, you suffer from ground attacks like I have. So I'd try for a navy similar to the one I have, and a larger air force early. We'll be testing this theory as the game progresses. What this means is that I wish I'd built 3-4 air units of different kinds and skipped industry and delayed some other builds.

    - Forget industry. My IC build was a mistake. I will get back the IC I put in by the end of the war, and a different schedule would have been less bad. As it is I maximized the punishment of starting with poor practicals. Also, if I'd built 1937 equipment and tried to use it through the war, that wouldn't have been as good as building 1941 equipment with my expanded IC. So, I did shift builds from the 30s to the 40s where units are better. Still, I'd skip industry builds altogether and pile up stuff that doesn't turn obsolete.

    - License Everything - This has to do with research, so I'll discuss it in depth there, but the short answer is that Canada should never research anything that rusts. This means you're stuck with non-capital ships, escorts only, but that's okay.

    - Special forces rule! I knew this going in, but I should have built 50-75% special forces instead of 25-30% special forces. Think value added. How much IC can I tack on to the backs of the Manpower I have? I don't mean you should build 1938-era tanks. Any armor you can't use right away will just get obsolete. I think special forces are the way to go. Perhaps license armor later in the war.

    - Have some way to prevent repeated air attacks on a single province [Ed - ya think?]. If you don't have air cover, make sure somebody brings an AA gun or five. If you cannot shoot them down in a dogfight, then making enemy CAS maximize time spent on R&R is critical. Tear them up with AA when they attack or they'll attack constantly.

    - Escorts and Convoys. Yes, everyone needs these, but Canada more than most. It starts off isolated, with most trades probably done over land with the USA. Once you conquer territory, the situation changes dramatically. So don't neglect Escorts and Convoys. It's tough to play catch up once the war starts. Don't know what to build 1936-1938? Escorts and Convoys don't become obsolete. 1936 Escorts and Convoys are just as good as 1946 Escorts and Convoys.

    - Also, pre-build bases and defenses. It would have been nice to have AA or fortress or whatnot for Messina, and I could certainly see the attacks coming. I've also played to a point where I really wish I had a pre-built airfield. The only downside of Naval Bases, Air Bases etc is that they keep the "you have units built" icon lit up, depriving you of a handy warning when real units become available.

    - Consider oddball units. I like Armored Cars. No, they don't have the punching power of real tanks, but they are fast. Speed kills (the enemy). There are going to be many occasions when you could outmaneuver an enemy if you had speed, cutting supply lines. This is especially true if you stay very active (see What to Do). Armored cars are meant for fast movement more than combat, so obsolescence is less of a worry.


    What to Research

    Infantry!



    - If it rusts, license it. Armor, Navy, Air Force, all that stuff. Just license it. Look at DD and CL. That's just escorts, but you're stuck researching 4-6 tech every level, and all Canada gets is 5-6 slots. There's no way to keep up here, or even stay respectable, without hurting your infantry techs. Same thing with specialized brigades like Artillery, Anti-Tank and Anti-Air. They're only a few slots, but you can't afford them. Before the war starts, the UK will require far too much money for licenses, if you ask me. Still, money you can trade for, leadership you cannot. After the war starts the UK still wants too much money, but worth trying three times to get a cheap offer for every deal, IMHO. Until the USA lets you have techs, I'd default to the UK. The things I got from France were cheaper but inferior. Not worth the trade off.

    - I'd also sign up for short-term deals, no more serial builds. Why? Well, correct me if I'm wrong, but licensed stuff won't upgrade (????), and you want the latest. So a deal which takes two years to build will spend half that time making units which aren't as good as you could be getting. You can get all the diplomats you need for this from around 0.10 Leadership.

    - The basic techs which everyone needs, industry, resources, infantry and a few odds and ends will consume all of Canada's Leadership. To stay up to date in infantry, IC, Agriculture and the like, you must abandon everything else. On the other hand, you CAN have top-notch Infantry if you abandon almost everything else. Since your primary active force will be infantry, this is a GOOD THING.





    LAND is where I am least confident, having recently discovered things which I ought to have researched long ago.



    Suffice it to say, however, that most things other than Infantry & Industry are best ignored by Canada. You'll put yourself behind in areas where you could have kept up with the big boys without gaining anything which will affect your real power in the game.


    What to Do

    - Send your transports out to die pointlessly as soon as hostilities begin! This is the key to victory. Heck, the USA spent all 1942 doing this with its Merchant Marine.

    - Do not defend Canada at all, ever. You're a part of the Commonwealth, your role in WW2 is to strip the home country bare.

    - Pick a few commanders and build them up. Canada has so few units that nothing is truly micromanagement. Granted, I have done poorly at this, but whatever, that's me, I play too fast. And I'm still learning. You will have enough combat that a few of your commanders can become very impressive. Pick the right ones.

    - Remember that you're human. Normally this would mean keeping your imperfections in mind, but here I mean remember that you can do all kinds of unexpected stuff. Whether you exploit the AI's inability to defend points of supply is up to you. You have such limited power that I'd say go ahead, make the most of what you've got. Regardless, jump around. Rensslaer's Portugal AAR is a great example of this, but a series of short operations with limited objectives seems to me the way to maximize your contribution to the war. I suppose I should have said Spoiler Alert.

    - Islands, Gandalf, I want to see islands! You're Canada, you can't really hold a perimeter against serious opposition. Islands, on the other hand, provide a natural barrier to the enemy that don't require a meat shield you cannot afford. In EU I hate owning islands because any rebellion requires manual suppression (I love the new "squash all rebels" button). Well, it's same thing here, except you are the rebels. Any enemy attempt to re-take an island requires a fairly serious AI effort. Even holding Sicily, with its land bridge to Italy, is far easier than holding bits of Italy proper.

    - Don't count enemy casualties. Okay, I'm doing that and I intend to keep doing it, but shouldn't. If the enemy loses 10,000 guys and you lose 5,000, or even 3000, that's a big win for the bad guys. The Axis have far more men than you. You need to shoot for a 5-1 or 10-1 advantage in losses. Canada needs to think like the Brit generals who saw the slaughter in WW1. Avoid casualties. I only count casualties because I need a way to keep score.

    - Feel free to go ahistorical. I probably won't, but I'd still suggest DoWing Portugal and other small states on any pretext. It's up to you, obviously, but my point is that if you have a choice between staring at Italy and Germany while doing nothing, trying your own personal D-Day all by yourself, or conquering bite-sized morsels, then dive into the hors d'ouvres tray! Eat up. They're all secretly Axis, trust me.

    - Hit and run. This is my plan for a bit down the road. We'll see how it works, but what I hope to do over the course of the war is to launch major raids, inflict real casualties (20,000+), then withdraw. There are many places which the Axis MUST defend. If I capture the garrisons then flee, the AI will still have to defend these territories. The net result will be that I reduce the number of troops the Axis have for their front lines by making them replace their garrisons over and over again. Heck, it would be cheesy, but I could capture the same city's garrison ten times. I won't, but that's the rough idea. The trick will be landing, surrounding, and capturing before reinforcements come. The fun will be hanging on long enough to draw off the inevitable AI reaction. My defensive general might just be the right guy for this kind of play. At first, he'll be attacking with overwhelming odds. Later he'll be defending with closer to even odds. I just hope my transports live to tell the tale. I should be able to do all my retreats from port. Hmmm, time to plan something.


    Who to Fight

    - Italy, certainly. It's big enough to matter, but weak enough to be in Canada's weight class. Take Sardinia first. Grab Sicily, sure, but Sardinia is more valuable yet less well defended. North Africa is harder but doable, obviously. Italy itself, well, we'll see.

    - Japan? I doubt I'll find out, in my Italy game the USA "Enforced Conquer" on Japan before doing much of anything else. We'll see. The trouble is that Japan has a serious navy, which might be impossible to avoid. Plus, Japanese held territory might have high a ratio of defense to strategic value. It certainly would be interesting to liberate, say, the Phillipines or Formosa or what have you. Hmm.

    - Germany? Um, I think not. You could conceivably grab Denmark or a bit of western France and try to defend. Giving the Allies an objective might get you the kind of help which changes everything. However, you risk fighting waves of German troops. A country with three or four understrength Corps can't really go toe to toe with a country with, what, ten times that? Plus, if you succeed, that's it. What you hold is likely to be all you get for the duration of the war. Let's say you take Brittany and keep it against repeated German counter attacks. Bo-ring. Holding Sicily - especially as I didn't know how it would turn out in the end, look how close the later fights got - holding Sicily for a few months with one Corps was fun. A few years of holding bits of the continent with everything you've got, not so much.

    - Germany? On the other hand, once the Germans have their hands full in the east, why not grab what you can. Denmark, Greece, can you say "Greater Canadian Co-Prosperity Sphere?"

    - Little Axis Wannabes - sure! Portugal, Persia, anything which is smallish and isolated looks good to me. Watch out for the Monroe Doctrine, though.
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  15. #135
    Lt. General eqqman's Avatar
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    I don't know if IC builds are a mistake, it depends on your strategy. The best way to do it is to go all out so you maximize your returns. Under this plan, then you need to be able to get some IC increases from conquests in order to be able to trickle out some units while you build up practical. If you're playing a "nice" Canada that isn't out for territorial gains, then this may be hard to do and you could be better off skipping it.

    I'm not sure if Canada can't take out Japan once the USA joins the Allies. You can use the US island bases to get yourself in range of the Home Islands and the American Navy will be engaging the IJN for you most of the time. As long as you can keep up your supply of Convoys it seems a challenge but possible to knock the Japanese out yourself. If Japan hasn't won in China by the time you are ready to attack, then I would say the odds are in your favor. It will certainly help to have plenty of Marines and Mountain troops on hand.

  16. #136
    Lt. General Jorlaan's Avatar
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    I've tried taking on Japan as Canada and it is HARD. The main problem is in fact the navy. The US will whittle down the Japanese navy over time but it happens slowly most of the time, and even a small Japanese navy is still better equipped than the Canadians most likely. This means they will still pose a challenge. They usually decimate my transport fleets during landings, and I have them as well protected as I can.
    I personally tend to stick to the Italian/small Axis country tactic. Sardinia, North Africa, Sicily are my obvious targets. Then I move up the boot once Germany has been busy in the Soviet Union for what I feel to be long enough, depends on the game and how well they did. My last game I hopped my troops in quickly and took Iraq and Iran when they joined Axis, before going on my Italian run. Took Greece and Bulgaria in that same game. I annexed Italy, Bulgaria, Greece and Iran, puppeted Iraq and Libya. It was my best Canadian achievement. It took practice. There are unique challenges for Canada in this game, as it does in fact have the strength to conquer and occupy as much territory as I just mentioned, and even more potentially. It does not help that in game the country is kind of weak compared to RL.

    This AAR has been a very well done Canadian game from someone who is obviously just leaning how this country must operate in this war. New strategies were made out of learned lessons and have been fairly sucessful. The Chapter 20 is a very interesting breakdown of what it takes to get Canada up and running as a true regional power in this war. I think if you were to do this again you could do twice as much with what you've learned.

    I look forward to the continuation.

  17. #137
    In my Mexico AAR I've pretty much done what you have. I managed to take Japan as Mexico, but that was only through the stupidity of the AI when it comes to Japan. I did it with 16 divisions built of 4 brigades of Inf. I agree entirely about the combat ratios and because of this I often find myself struggling to decide what nation in North America to play as. Mexico has a much larger pop allowing you to exploit their manpower to build and relatively large and efficient force. However it lacks IC and Leadership sorely. This is the exact opposite to Canada who has a fairly good IC and better leadership but lack manpower. I'm going to go through a test game with some of the things I have learnt in this AAR. It's very good and informative. I look forward to what happens next.

  18. #138
    Second Lieutenant Landris's Avatar
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    I noticed you're missing the tech Radios. Don't! It's a one-time 10% combat boost. Get it before fighting starts.

    This well-written, entertaining AAR inspired me to play Canada again, and I've had success in Sardinia, North Africa, and liberating Norway. I had limited success in Sicily but got booted off before the Brits re-invaded it.

    My OOB skipped Corps in favour of a slightly streamlined command structure (Theatre->Army Group->Army->Divisions). I was comfortable skipping Corps because I made sure I had Grand Battle Plan in the first half of 1940. The advantage of this is that Army has 400 km command range instead of 200 km for Corps. Each army had 5 divisions, 3 (2xInf+1xAA+1xArt) + 1 (3xMar) + 1 (3xMtn), and I managed three of these armies almost comfortably with my manpower. I licensed destroyers and planes, I went with Multi-roles but might go for Interceptors next time and try to skip the AA (save a bit of research). I skipped Radar. I built IC but also regret it.

    In your game you took the decision that lowers neutrality, but that is meant for people who want to war ahistorically early and I feel it is not a fair way to play. It is tougher without it, in fact I trained no officers until my laws could change in 1939, at which point I poured all leadership into it for a year or more.

    You are going to want Integrated Support and Special Forces techs if you are using special forces. Civil defence might be worthwhile if you have planes and destroyers needing lots of repair.

    I will have to try your suggestion of armoured cars. Do you find engineers worth the space in divisions and the research time as Canada?

  19. #139
    Lt. General eqqman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorlaan View Post
    I've tried taking on Japan as Canada and it is HARD...
    There is no strife, no prejudice, no national conflict in Japan itself as yet. Its hazards are hostile to us all. Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation many never come again. But why, some say, invade Japan? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

    We choose to invade Japan. We choose to invade Japan in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

  20. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by eqqman View Post
    I don't know if IC builds are a mistake, it depends on your strategy. The best way to do it is to go all out so you maximize your returns. Under this plan, then you need to be able to get some IC increases from conquests in order to be able to trickle out some units while you build up practical. If you're playing a "nice" Canada that isn't out for territorial gains, then this may be hard to do and you could be better off skipping it.

    I'm not sure if Canada can't take out Japan once the USA joins the Allies. You can use the US island bases to get yourself in range of the Home Islands and the American Navy will be engaging the IJN for you most of the time. As long as you can keep up your supply of Convoys it seems a challenge but possible to knock the Japanese out yourself. If Japan hasn't won in China by the time you are ready to attack, then I would say the odds are in your favor. It will certainly help to have plenty of Marines and Mountain troops on hand.
    IC could have been decent if I'd done it differently, but it's such a close question that I don't think I'd do it again. It also assumes a longer war than we might end up seeing if the US beats Japan first and the USSR beats back Germany too easily. A few island in the Pacific would be nice, we'll see how I do against easier prey, first, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorlaan View Post
    I've tried taking on Japan as Canada and it is HARD. The main problem is in fact the navy. The US will whittle down the Japanese navy over time but it happens slowly most of the time, and even a small Japanese navy is still better equipped than the Canadians most likely. This means they will still pose a challenge. They usually decimate my transport fleets during landings, and I have them as well protected as I can.

    I personally tend to stick to the Italian/small Axis country tactic. Sardinia, North Africa, Sicily are my obvious targets. Then I move up the boot once Germany has been busy in the Soviet Union for what I feel to be long enough, depends on the game and how well they did. My last game I hopped my troops in quickly and took Iraq and Iran when they joined Axis, before going on my Italian run. Took Greece and Bulgaria in that same game. I annexed Italy, Bulgaria, Greece and Iran, puppeted Iraq and Libya. It was my best Canadian achievement. It took practice. There are unique challenges for Canada in this game, as it does in fact have the strength to conquer and occupy as much territory as I just mentioned, and even more potentially. It does not help that in game the country is kind of weak compared to RL.

    This AAR has been a very well done Canadian game from someone who is obviously just leaning how this country must operate in this war. New strategies were made out of learned lessons and have been fairly sucessful. The Chapter 20 is a very interesting breakdown of what it takes to get Canada up and running as a true regional power in this war. I think if you were to do this again you could do twice as much with what you've learned.

    I look forward to the continuation.
    Thanks for the nice comments! Yes, things will definitely be different once the Axis have to fight more than just Canada. I might be able to do a good deal more, later. We'll see.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fire and Ash View Post
    In my Mexico AAR I've pretty much done what you have. I managed to take Japan as Mexico, but that was only through the stupidity of the AI when it comes to Japan. I did it with 16 divisions built of 4 brigades of Inf. I agree entirely about the combat ratios and because of this I often find myself struggling to decide what nation in North America to play as. Mexico has a much larger pop allowing you to exploit their manpower to build and relatively large and efficient force. However it lacks IC and Leadership sorely. This is the exact opposite to Canada who has a fairly good IC and better leadership but lack manpower. I'm going to go through a test game with some of the things I have learnt in this AAR. It's very good and informative. I look forward to what happens next.
    I'd give up some Leadership for manpower about now. Narrowing my research focus would be easier than just doing without any new units. Of course, if I were doing this again there'd be other changes and maybe I would not be so short on manpower.

    Quote Originally Posted by Landris View Post
    I noticed you're missing the tech Radios. Don't! It's a one-time 10% combat boost. Get it before fighting starts.

    This well-written, entertaining AAR inspired me to play Canada again, and I've had success in Sardinia, North Africa, and liberating Norway. I had limited success in Sicily but got booted off before the Brits re-invaded it.

    My OOB skipped Corps in favour of a slightly streamlined command structure (Theatre->Army Group->Army->Divisions). I was comfortable skipping Corps because I made sure I had Grand Battle Plan in the first half of 1940. The advantage of this is that Army has 400 km command range instead of 200 km for Corps. Each army had 5 divisions, 3 (2xInf+1xAA+1xArt) + 1 (3xMar) + 1 (3xMtn), and I managed three of these armies almost comfortably with my manpower. I licensed destroyers and planes, I went with Multi-roles but might go for Interceptors next time and try to skip the AA (save a bit of research). I skipped Radar. I built IC but also regret it.

    In your game you took the decision that lowers neutrality, but that is meant for people who want to war ahistorically early and I feel it is not a fair way to play. It is tougher without it, in fact I trained no officers until my laws could change in 1939, at which point I poured all leadership into it for a year or more.

    You are going to want Integrated Support and Special Forces techs if you are using special forces. Civil defence might be worthwhile if you have planes and destroyers needing lots of repair.

    I will have to try your suggestion of armoured cars. Do you find engineers worth the space in divisions and the research time as Canada?
    Good advice on Radio, added that as soon as I read this. On Neutrality, I'm taking every advantage I can get and proud of it! Engineers I'll have to try. I liked them as the USA to get combined arms, but that game was too much of a cakewalk to be a real test.

    Quote Originally Posted by eqqman View Post
    There is no strife, no prejudice, no national conflict in Japan itself as yet. Its hazards are hostile to us all. Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation many never come again. But why, some say, invade Japan? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

    We choose to invade Japan. We choose to invade Japan in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.
    I'd have to get there first! I'd also have to get there before the US takes everything, which I might not be able to do even if I try.
    I follow Paradox on Twitter and have Johan's photo on my phone for Twitter messages. I also follow the Pope. When the Pontiff tweets, I see the picture and lately I wonder "yes, but is Johan speaking ex cathedra?"
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