Daedwartin

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I'm curious, you seem to build a lot of Multi-role planes can I ask why you prefer them over other planes? I've always felt that if I need Air superiority I'll build fighters and if I need to bomb something I'll build CAS or Bombers
Fighters are Multi-Role. Are you thinking of interceptors, which are good only for intercepting planes?

And he does so because There is this thing called the Pacific Ocean. It's Big. Very, Very big. New Zeeland doesn't seem that far away from Australia on a map, but's over 2 thousand miles away from it.
 

misterbean

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Interceptors have more firepower, but M/R have better defense and the ability to carry small bombloads. In a fight, interceptors generally come out on top, but like Daedwartin said, they have far better range, which is necessary in any theater where airbases are few and far between. To give you an idea, interceptors stationed in Cornwall reach Brest in France. M/R can reach the Bay of Biscay.
I use them as CAS with less bombing ability but with more durability and range.
 
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misterbean

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Generally speaking, you can build an airforce out of only M/R and Tac. They can perform any mission except transporting suplies and dropping paras. INT are better at dogfights, CAS are better against tanks, and so on, but those two give you the broadest base possible with only 2 types of plane needed. Like Daedwartin said, jack of all trades, master of none. Add droptanks to the M/R, and they have amazing range.
 

Forster

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Nice going misterbean. I about fell out of my chair when I read your statement that you could strat bomb Japan if you had the strats. :rolleyes:
How long is it going to take to have some?
 

misterbean

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My practical is in the basement, so it will take forever, but I am building 2 transport planes and 1 strategic bomber, so once those are done, I would be able to build up fast.
 

misterbean

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9zS3zrE.png


Chapter 23: Home For Christmas?


After last chapter, I feel quite confident that there is no way that Japan can win anymore, even with the loss of 4 battleships. Besides, I would really like to end Japan this year, leaving the US free to fully devote all of its attention to the liberation of Europe.


I rebase 2 of my spend CAGs to Guam and fly 2 CAGs, who by now are all but fully organised, over to take their place.


Throughout this chapter I keep sinking the occasional Italian or Japanese convoy in the Carribean or south of Ireland. Anything to bring the enemy’s NU down, helps in the long run.


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I am going to have to wait just a bit longer, though, until my reinforcements (read: ship repairs) go down. Note that, in the worst possible scenario, I still have 3 carriers in production, along with a couple of light cruisers and destroyers.

Another thing that is worth keeping in mind, is the way that the AI uses your supply slider. It can calculate pretty accurately how long you can last with the current amount of supplies, and is quite willing to go months without putting any points in that slider. The 0.03 IC you see there is probably a rounding error.

Under normal situations, this is fine, as it leaves more IC for other things. The only time you really have to keep a very close watch on it, is during Barbarossa, when you will sometimes lose almost 1000 supplies per day. As Germany, try to keep production and upgrades to a bare minimum, so that you can put all of it in reinforcements and supply production.


The 2nd Marine Division is ready for action. I deploy them in San Diego, where they will be on standby in case of an emergency, like a surprise landing on Honolulu. Of course, for them to be of any use, I will need a fleet to carry them. It’s only a matter of days until the Assault Ships are ready. When they are, I add 3 of them to the queu.

They have exactly the same stats as Landing Craft, but they offer more protection to the crew and passengers in exchange for just a small increase in IC.


The transport planes are also ready. They too will be stationed in San Diego, along with the paratroopers, so that I can fly them anywhere in the Pacific in no time. I add another armour divison (my 6th) and 1 M/R to the mix.


Since the Japanese are just as busy repairing as I am, it is relatively safe to transfer 1 garrison from Guam to Saipan. At this point, losing Guam is no longer a big deal. I have my final stepping stone for Japan. Iwo Jima must be held until I have successfully landed on Japanese soil. After that, who cares?


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In preparations for the final push, I reorganise my surface fleets. 1st Fleet will carry all the ships that are (almost) fully repaired, while 5th Fleet will carry all the damaged surface ships, heading for Midway for safety.


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Here is the invasion plan. The Assault Fleet and 1st Fleet will take up position in the bay, while both carrier task forces will protect the flanks. From this bay, I have easy access to at least 4 level-10 ports, while 1st Fleet's big guns will allow me to bombard the coast on a large scale. I will need these ports, as I plan to unload the entire army. As soon as I have provinces with airfields, I will rebase my fighters and tactical bombers to Japan, so that they can get to work as well. Remember that planes lose some of their Org when rebased, so it is vital that I can do this early.


CTF 2 runs into a lone CVL the moment they get into position. Needless to say that it is hopelessly outgunned.

I could use the CAGs to support the land battles, but I want them protecting my navies. Besides, if they run into land-based fighters, they’re toast anyway.


e9oJwNW.png


The Assault Fleet is in place and debarkation begins. Can you see how I’m doing this? 1 Corps will take care of the island in the south, while another one will take the island in the middle of the bay. The rest will each take 1 port. I am landing on either side of the port so that it becomes much harder to defend against. If they have troops guarding the ports, they will have to choose whether to turn left or right. However they do it, I can outflank them. If they don’t move, I can attack from both sides at once. It’s a win/win situation, unless the enemy has other units stationed nearby.

Now, I have never played multiplayer HOI 3 in my life, but I can imagine that there is a very real danger here against a competent human player. This will become evident once the troops are actually on land, but it bears mentioning now. My army will be spread out in small groups all over the southern part of Japan. If there are a lot of defenders in the area, they could cut them off and take them down one at a time. The AI, however, is usually not very adept at protecting large islands, such as the UK or Japan, so I am not worried. All I have to do, is move fast enough.


30kxv0v.png


The fall of Singapore is a really bad event for UK, which I believe costs them 10% NU (I believe; correct me if I'm wrong). In this case, however, it is not all that significant since an invasion of the British Isles is highly unlikely at this point. The important piece of information is that Japan has a lot of troops that are too far away to intervene here.


sKucOpX.png


Osaka will be the center of my advance. Failing to grab it ASAP, means that my army will be split in two and that could prove fatal. It has to be taken and held until I can grab the ports further south and bring everyone north. Together with Sasebo, Nagasaki, Hiroshima and the other ports, I have more than enough capacity to feed the army and airforce.


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Nagoya is another port, but there is a secondary objective here. I have to keep these guys on the defensive so that they can’t interfere with the attack on Osaka.


HeQpuuQ.png


Mountaineers are excellent on defense, and they are in Urban terrain behind a river, so my men will have their work cut out for them. The point here is not to take the city, but to pin them down long enough for the rest of the corps to make their way north.


dQuQBj9.png


Osaka falls after less than a day, so I can anchor the Assault Fleet in port, where they will be less at risk. It also has a large airfield, so I will be bringing in the first couple of fighter groups from around the Pacific islands shortly.


cYKrjNT.png


First, though, I need to take care of something else. Rather than dragging the Pacific Theater HQ along with me, why don’t I simply create a new one? It will be very fragile at first, so I will have to protect it carefully, but it’s an HQ. They’re not meant to fight anyway. Doing this will allow me to add every unit, ship and plane in the vicinity to the 1st Army Group for reduced supply needs.


Oh, and like I said before, notice how divided I am right now. This is the most precarious moment of the invasion. Thankfully, with Osaka in my hands, I have a strong defensive center to fall back on in case things go wrong.


LMHkd8c.png


I am not going to bore you with every single ship that the Japanese threw at me, because they mostly come in small groups. I mean, really, AI. I know about Banzai charges, but that was supposed to be the IJA, not the IJN. Squadrons of between 1 and 4 ships? Often just a couple of LC? What did you hope that would accomplish?

Suffice it to say, it is a turkey shoot for the most part. Only at one point do they manage to assemble anything resembling a decent fleet. Of course, by that time, they only have a couple of capital ships left, so I don’t even have to bring in both CTFs at that point.


Susaki falls on the 5th. Another level-10 port with a level-10 airfield. Good. Now I can bring the rest of the planes over, keeping 1st Fleet under cover of land-based interceptors at all times. Very handy indeed. By 7 PM that same day, Kyoto is mine. This is an urban province, which makes it easy to defend, and it is right next to Osaka, helping to protect the flank of my main port.


ltwWDGm.png


Remember when I said that the AI could be damn stubborn? I am invading their home island, and am halfway toTokyo already.
“Never mind that, we’re going to attack Guam with 4 frontline divisions!”
Ok, have fun!

My only response is to move the reserve CAGs to Midway for safekeeping. Sorry about the garrison, but it is expendable at this point.


By the 6th, if becomes painfully obvious that attacking Nagoya with 2 infantry divisions across a river is not a good idea and I end the attack, losing 1432 men versus their 171. I will have to wait until I can get things organised. They did their job, however, allowing me to secure Osaka and Kyoto with ease.


Hiroshima falls on the 7th. Level 10 port. Level 10 airfield. Nice. That will keep the supplies coming in!


yU3ul7s.png


When the going gets tough, use flanking attacks and the “support attack” mission. Works like a charm, even against such stubborn defense.


CU1ydHI.png


Then, when the attackers take control of the province, turn things around. Now they will use “Support Attack”, while the other ones will attack. Fighting in Japan is like a knife fight in a phone booth because of how narrow the island is, but the skills you need are exactly the same as for Barbarossa. Multiple axes of attack and flanking attacks whenever you can.

In this particular case, I can spoil the Japanese counterattack by coming in from the flank before they can get any traction.


It takes me until the 14th to remember that I have Tac bombing Nagoya. By that time, they’re in urgent need of some R&R, but they have done their job, reducing the Org of the defenders to zero. By 11that evening, the defenders give up and make a run for it. This second attack cost me 2446 men versus their 2343. Mountaineers in a city behind a river. Hell on earth!


6oSUdkF.png


By this time, I can cover every frontline province with a single fighter or interceptor group, leaving the Japanese airforce unable to gain the upper hand.

Watch the combat modifiers, though. Their nighttime combat modifier is -46 versus my -25. That means that Japan has not been keeping their radar techs up-to-date.


Gruw2T2.png


It takes me until the 22nd of October to fully protect my rear. Once I get those men to the frontline, I will enjoy a numerical superiority and then, it’s just a matter of time, though I do keep 6 divisions guarding the various ports in the south. After all, Japan does have an army elsewhere, in China, Malaysia, the Phillipines and who knows where else.


eXDkrJD.png


By the 1st of November, I am finally starting to get things organised, and Japan really is doomed now. Oh, they try to use fighters and bombers to supplement their lack of troops, but I have more of those as well, and they’re all within range.


GFZlajk.png


The Phillipines fall on the 4th, when I am on the outskirts of Tokyo. In this reality, the occupation of Manilla will not last very long.


G40TPdp.png


I had not expected that I would be able to pull off an encirclement, but Tokyo is surrounded. At least for a while. They manage to break through (my fault; I only put 1 division in Hitachi) and run, but it takes them a long time, and all the while, they are being hammered from the south. Tokyo falls on the 3rd of December.


Nkw6pVl.png


Japan surrenders and becomes my puppet on the 22nd of December. I made it with 3 days to spare!

Japan becomes a member of the allies. By now, their naval Banzai charges have cost them dearly. They have 1 BB, 1 CV, 4 DD, 3 LC, 2 CL, 2 SS and 4 TP. A grand total of 17 ships is all that is left of the Imperial Japanese Navy.

On the other hand, they have the third largest airforce (2 CAGs, 19 bombers and 7 fighters) of the allies and the largest army (!!) with 296 brigades, mostly infantry-based.


huY2KVZ.png


Germany is on the backfoot in Soviet Russia, and Italy is slowly being kicked out of Palestine by the British. If I were to keep this campaing going, this would have been the perfect time to start transferring everything to the UK.


So, that was it for my USA. I hope you had fun and learned how to maximize the potential of the most powerful nation on earth (with the possible exception of the SU). I mean, really, the power kick you get from going to war with 600 IC is one of the biggest highs that the game can offer for me. It is great, and what’s even better, is that there is so little risk of an actual invasion that you can’t lose. So new players, once you get used to naval combat, give the USA a try. You’ll love it, but don’t underestimate the IJN.

Despite my remarks, they are without a doubt the most advanced navy on earth at the start of the game, and they have a couple of awesome admirals. When used correctly (AI, I’m looking at you!), they can be a real powerhouse on the high seas.


When I come back, I will be playing another nation. See you then!
 
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Stuyvesant

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Not that the final outcome was ever in doubt, but still nicely done. The Pacific Theatre has been pacified before 1942 is out!

The way you managed to swamp the Japanese Home Islands was impressive and shows just how much your superiority in IC paid off. Looking forward to your next excursion!

PS: From the penultimate update: KMS Tirpitz was a beast!
 

misterbean

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<cheers and applause>

Well done! Japan puppeted before Christmas '42 is a fine accomplishment. :)

Thank you. Getting my army back together after the landings took longer than I had anticipated, but once they did, the outcome was never in doubt. I'm quite happy with it, and, theoretically, I would still be able to start Torch about on time, if I wanted to.

Not that the final outcome was ever in doubt, but still nicely done. The Pacific Theatre has been pacified before 1942 is out!

The way you managed to swamp the Japanese Home Islands was impressive and shows just how much your superiority in IC paid off. Looking forward to your next excursion!

PS: From the penultimate update: KMS Tirpitz was a beast!

Yeah, it all boiled down to getting close enough to land safely. And you have to take into account that, basically, it was the starting US Army, only strengthened with modern artillery and a single marine division, that won in the end.

As for Tirpitz, I agree. She did a real number on me. If I had continued, I would have made sure to get even for the loss of my ships.

Next up, we return to Germany. I will play out the early parts of the war and give a quick "war journal" kind of update before heading into Soviet Russia in greater detail.
 

justleroy

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Yeah, the AI's penchant for weenie fleets is a bummer when you're looking for a naval challenge. Though, I thought it was hilarious when I sunk a "fleet" of 2 dd's and 3 tp's commanded by Yamamoto.
 

misterbean

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Yeah, the AI's penchant for weenie fleets is a bummer when you're looking for a naval challenge. Though, I thought it was hilarious when I sunk a "fleet" of 2 dd's and 3 tp's commanded by Yamamoto.

I have a sinking feeling that they've programmed it that way to balance the battle strength of the Royal Navy. They too will come at you with small squadrons, when you're Germany. And more. And more. And more, until you have the whole Home Fleet bearing down on you. The only way for a human Kriegsmarine with a standard German build to survive that, is to pick your fights. Hit 'em fast and hard and run back to port and hope that you sink something valuable.
Besides that, they have never been able to properly balance the Pacific. Not in HOI 2. Not in HOI 3.
 

Nicegil

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Speaking of small fleets, it's also a more "realistic" way to do things. During WWII, a naval squadron of 10-12 ships, including DDs, was considered as "huge" (considering the logistical strain to make them operate in the same place at the same time).
Taking this in account, the way the AI choose to run its naval forces is, IMHO, quite interesting and you don't need a "super-mega-strong" fleet to face them but rather a good anticipation (Intel, Recon, Planning), a greater tactical flexibility and coordination between your different naval groups and/or air support.
One exception though... The USN !!! It's not unusual to see stacks of 20-30 US ships sightseeing the coast of Denmark ; a real pain in the b... to deal with !!! As German player, it takes forever to get rid of the swarm of CAGs with your own fighters and once it's done and your NAVs start to scratch paints, the US ships just leave the area... and everything starts all over again a few weeks later. Very frustrating !!! :mad:

Anyway... You made a great demonstration of a clean and quick execution of the Japanese Empire. I keep that in the recesses of my mind...
Well done ! I'm eager to follow your German (!!! :cool: ) and Soviet games.
 

misterbean

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Excellent display for using the USA. I may have to give it a try.

Thank you.

Speaking of small fleets, it's also a more "realistic" way to do things. During WWII, a naval squadron of 10-12 ships, including DDs, was considered as "huge" (considering the logistical strain to make them operate in the same place at the same time).
Taking this in account, the way the AI choose to run its naval forces is, IMHO, quite interesting and you don't need a "super-mega-strong" fleet to face them but rather a good anticipation (Intel, Recon, Planning), a greater tactical flexibility and coordination between your different naval groups and/or air support.
One exception though... The USN !!! It's not unusual to see stacks of 20-30 US ships sightseeing the coast of Denmark ; a real pain in the b... to deal with !!! As German player, it takes forever to get rid of the swarm of CAGs with your own fighters and once it's done and your NAVs start to scratch paints, the US ships just leave the area... and everything starts all over again a few weeks later. Very frustrating !!! :mad:

Anyway... You made a great demonstration of a clean and quick execution of the Japanese Empire. I keep that in the recesses of my mind...
Well done ! I'm eager to follow your German (!!! :cool: ) and Soviet games.

It's strange, but I have never been that bothered by the USN. Maybe because I usually don't go for Norway?

As for the composition of the USN, I still have a tendency to go for Iowa-class BB and so on. I'm sure you can relate how RL and the game differ in a big way sometimes.
 

KyrionMyrthar

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I always want the Iowa-class, too. I've been known to go upwards of 30 carriers, too, simply because I have the IC to do it, along with escorts. Manpower limits can be rough on the USA in vanilla.
 

Nicegil

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When I'm playing the USA, I'd rather follow the historical build-up (I even scuttle the 3 BBs totally destroyed at Pearl Harbour ; can't change myself...). It's quite tedious with regards to naval units (proper techs to get the proper ship-classes) but it works fine, thanks to the IC available. Depending on the war progress in the Pacific, I sometimes even go for the Montana-class SHBB... just for fun.

Surprisingly, speaking of land warfare, game and RL don't differ that much ; even the logistical part, despite some flaws, is quite realistic. I never read a single line about game mechanic, soft or hard attack, combined arms bonus, aso... and it still works fine for me.
Air and sea warfare, on the other hand, not that much. The repair rate of main naval units, as an example of major difference, is ridiculously high : you can have an aircraft carrier almost destroyed (1% left) and not even 4 months later, it's fully repaired...! It forces you to change your strategy a lot.