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When it is your turn to send a VASSAL move, the wait is excruciating. When it's my turn, well, I've been busy.
Playing my second full campaign game, and I can't shake the feeling that the campaign is tough for the Axis.
There are two ways to get victory points: killing blocks and seizing objective hexes.
The German may be able to counterattack and kill an Allied block or two if an Allied attack goes poorly, or if the Allies leave a weak point poorly protected. On the other hand, The Axis is going to be hard-pressed to protect 100% of his Italian blocks from getting killed in the defence, especially with the Allied ability to rain down massive assets in a single battle when desired. So to me this is pretty much a wash at best. The Axis can't count on racking up victory points from "kills" against a cautious Allied player.
That leaves the objective hexes. Let's assume that the Allies don't get anywhere near Messina. That leaves the five Mutual VP spaces (Val di Catania, Cantania, Niscemi, Caltanissetta, and Termini Imerese), and the three German-only VP spaces (ports of Syracuse, Palerma, and Marsala). That's a total of 8 VPs.
I would say that the Brit should be able to clear Syracuse, Catania and Val di Catania by the end of turn 9 or he is really messing up. That knocks the German VP total down to 3 (drop two relative VPs for the mutual spaces and one for the port).
At that point all the American needs to accomplish is two of the other mutual objectives, or one of those and the other two ports, by the end of the game and the Axis will lose.
Even against a dogged Axis defence, I think the Allies can count on that much progress, especially as Italian morale starts to crumble, and the German panzergrenadiers start to whither.
Am I missing something?
Soli Deo Gloria!
My advice to the Axis is to be very aggressive early on - before the Allied air power comes into play. Try to smash a beachhead with your panzers on turn 1, then on future turns follow up your attack if possible, or else pull back and play defense. But you need to rack up a kill or two to win - and since the Allies will tend to grow stronger and the Axis weaker, turns 1 and 2 are the time to find them! Don't be afraid to scratch the paint on your panzers; they're there to attack!
One thing that I appreciate about this series, that's different from many other wargames, is that you can't cause heavy casualties when defending. If you get six hits, the attacker will just cancel the attack and try again next turn. So you need to hold the line with your Italians and keep your Germans back to smash any weak point in the Allied line.
The lands around my dwelling are more beautiful from the day when it is given to me to see faces I have never seen before. All is more beautiful, all is more beautiful and life is thankfulness. These guests of mine make my house grand.
The axis can get VP's by capturing beach heads as well.