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Subject: Best First Move for USSR When Playing U.S. +2 rss

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Ryan Hopkins
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At the outset, my apologies, as I'm sure that this question has been asked and answered somewhere in these forums. My powers of search are eluding me at the moment, but it is probably just as well, as I'd like to understand if the thinking has changed on this point over the years.

My question is this: if you are playing the variant with the U.S. at +2, and those +2 have been invested in Iran to bring it to 3/0, and assuming an otherwise standard U.S. set-up, what is your best first move as the USSR (also assuming no scoring cards held)?

The +2 really makes the USSR's AR1 pretty tricky. There are no good coup targets. Even with a 4 ops card, your chances of kicking out the U.S. in Iran or Italy is only 50/50. Even if you do decide to go this route, a weak coup in Iran means that not only have you wasted a 4 ops card, but you're very likely to be counter-couped.

The best that I can come up with is to forego the AR1 coup and move into Afghanistan to begin to make some headway in Asia. Of course, the U.S. could coup you on their AR1, but would be subject to counter-coup again. As the USSR, I hate not to drop Defcon on my AR1, but I hate even more waste a big ops card on a coin flip.

What do you think? All things being equal, what should I do?
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Ben Kyo
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Depends on your hand.

Assuming no way of jumping into Asia and a strong hand, I tend to open with an Iran or Italy coup. With no way of jumping into Asia and a weak hand, I tend to control Iraq and/or add influence into Afghanistan (preferring Iraq to Afghanistan, usually).

All totally situational and hand-dependent, of course, which is why you haven't found any "answers".
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Ryan Hopkins
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Benkyo wrote:
Depends on your hand.

Assuming no way of jumping into Asia and a strong hand, I tend to open with an Iran or Italy coup. With no way of jumping into Asia and a weak hand, I tend to control Iraq and/or add influence into Afghanistan (preferring Iraq to Afghanistan, usually).

All totally situational and hand-dependent, of course, which is why you haven't found any "answers".


Fair enough, what would you do with this hand:

Marshall Plan (4)
Indo-Pakistani War (2)
Independent Reds (2)
Defectors (2)
Captured Nazi Scientist (1)
Blockade (1)
Asia Scoring

and, of course, the China Card. He headlined Containment and I headlined Red Scare/Purge.
 
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Ben Kyo
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Very tricky. Hoping for luck with IP, Independent Reds to Afghanistan. If he doesn't coup Afghanistan or take Pakistan, play Asia scoring. He'll probably move into Pakistan though, which is when I'd gamble on IP war*.

Alternatively, a safer opening would probably be Independent Reds to Iraq, followed by Asia Scoring.

EDIT: I'm far from an expert though, and I don't doubt that many better players would come up with better alternatives.

EDIT2: *actually, yeah, the China Card for a coup gives better odds and is worth it here.
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Martin Jeffreys
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rhopkins wrote:
Fair enough, what would you do with this hand:

Marshall Plan (4)
Indo-Pakistani War (2)
Independent Reds (2)
Defectors (2)
Captured Nazi Scientist (1)
Blockade (1)
Asia Scoring

and, of course, the China Card. He headlined Containment and I headlined Red Scare/Purge.


With so few ops in your own hand, I'm unconvinced about your choice of headline.
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Ryan Hopkins
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Korhil_NZ wrote:
rhopkins wrote:
Fair enough, what would you do with this hand:

Marshall Plan (4)
Indo-Pakistani War (2)
Independent Reds (2)
Defectors (2)
Captured Nazi Scientist (1)
Blockade (1)
Asia Scoring

and, of course, the China Card. He headlined Containment and I headlined Red Scare/Purge.


With so few ops in your own hand, I'm unconvinced about your choice of headline.


Yeah, I don't disagree with you, and I considered not headlining it, but I think I may have been seduced by the prospect of the playing Blockade to wipe out West Germany, which was spoiled by his play of Containment.
 
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Matthew Miyares
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With that hand? Only 3 real HL options: Asia Scoring, Red Scare/Purge, and Captured Nazi Scientists.

Honestly, I myself probably would have Headlined CNS, and used RS/P for an Italy Coup. Next options would have relied on the outcome. If US Spread to Western Asia, I still have Indo-Pak in my pocket, along with China. 1st turn might be messy, but I think I'd be prepared to fight on two fronts. Plus, opening Italy might distract the US from Asia altogether; it certainly doesn't telegraph the scoring card you have, and bluffing is a key part of the game.

But then, I like to go for Europe in a US+2 game, which is probably not the wisest option, unless you headline Socialist Governments.

If I headline Suez or Arab-Israeli War, Iran coup is still a good option, even at the +2.
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Ryan Hopkins
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rhopkins wrote:
Korhil_NZ wrote:
rhopkins wrote:
Fair enough, what would you do with this hand:

Marshall Plan (4)
Indo-Pakistani War (2)
Independent Reds (2)
Defectors (2)
Captured Nazi Scientist (1)
Blockade (1)
Asia Scoring

and, of course, the China Card. He headlined Containment and I headlined Red Scare/Purge.


With so few ops in your own hand, I'm unconvinced about your choice of headline.


Yeah, I don't disagree with you, and I considered not headlining it, but I think I may have been seduced by the prospect of the playing Blockade to wipe out West Germany, which was spoiled by his play of Containment.


Also, I didn't have a great other headline. Although I probably should have headlined Asia scoring, now that I think about it.
 
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Ben Kyo
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I'm much more interested in the original question than the misplay of the headline, if anyone else wants to have a stab at it from the conditions given.
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King in Green
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One small correction. You have a 66% chance of getting Italy, assuming your influence in Austria/ Yugoslavia doesn't get Trumaned/EEUed out.
 
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Kris Wei
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rhopkins wrote:


Marshall Plan (4)
Indo-Pakistani War (2)
Independent Reds (2)
Defectors (2)
Captured Nazi Scientist (1)
Blockade (1)
Asia Scoring
Red Scare/Purge


Marshall - unavailable, except you give up Europe and/or Warsaw's out, good held card to wait UN
I-P War - good event, secure your China coup on Pakistan, 2op if you succeed
Ind Reds - 2op
Defectors - 2op, possible space option
CNS - event
Blockade - event
Asia - event
China - 5op

Calculating these op, I am doubt who's purged?

I'll HL Asia and coup Italy with RS/P on AR1.

But with your opening, you might put 2 in Afghanistan with IR (AR1), then coup Paki with China(AR2), Score Asia no matter the coup's success or not(AR3), event CNS(AR4), put 2 in Iraq with Defectors(AR5), and event Blockade(AR6).

This move only changes when your opponent coup Afghanistan(?!) or crawl into Colombia(??!), which both considered risky/rich/noob moves.

Edit: if Nassered, go Libya instead of Iraq.
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Michael Valentine

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After your opening, I'm couping Italy with Independent Reds. A 5 or 6, and follow up with control. A 1-4, and play Asia assuming he hasn't controlled Pakistan, taking 1 vp. Marshall is your hold. Don't play China (assuming he doesn't move into Pakistan at defcon 4; if he does, then coup with China). CNS for event as soon as practical. Defectors for ops, probably to control Iraq and get presence in Mideast before next turn. Blockade maybe event, maybe the op. IPW probably for the event if defcon later drops to 3 and he ventures into Pakistan; otherwise ops.

If going back to the set up, I think I like CNS for the headline, with RSP for the ar1 coup of Italy.
 
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ray donovan
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I headline Asia scoring for a safe way.
Ar1 independants reds 2 inf in Irak
During the round, Nazi for event, space defector, blocade 1 op in saoudi arabia, IP/war might be played as event if he puts at least 3 influences there and didnt control afganistan otherwise 2 inf in saoudi or SK. Ar6 coup Italy with redscare.
If he start to coup battleground my 1op from LG go in afga.

Its quite a secure play, giving you a small lead in VP early on, a good space race position and no good coup target for him.
 
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