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Salvatore Vasta
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- A face-to-face game between Richard Sheridan (the Axis) and Sal Vasta (the Allies). Richard is new to the game, but a veteran gamer.

France - German panzer and infantry proved deadlier in June/July than April/May. Die rolls swung in the Axis favor so combat results tended to disrupt and eliminate French armies rather than just cause retreats. With holes appearing in the front line, German armies moved through the gaps capturing cities along the way. It proved too much for France which was conquered. France's National Will dropped to zero.

The aftermath resulted in the Alsace-Lorraine Disputed Area being ceded to Germany, a Political Success event causing Romania to join the Axis, and the independent and neutral countries of Vichy, French North Africa, and Syria being formed. Though historically all part of Vichy, the control of those regions was very local so the game treats them as separate countries.

The bulk of German forces then began to move back into Germany and toward Hungary and Yugoslavia. Germany must maintain a minimum garrison of three field armies and two air units on the Western Front. This is to prevent the Axis player from withdrawing an unrealistic number of units from the West to attack other areas of the map.

Mediterranean - Axis and Western forces remained in positions for the summer. As Germany launched offensives in the Balkans, it withdrew the Germany 5 Luftwaffe from Sicily in late summer. This was the move Churchill was waiting for to put the British on the offensive. A new UK RAF unit was shipped down to Egypt. And despite the presence of an Italian air unit and surface warship unit in Sicily, the UK Force H carrier unit shipped to Malta to threaten Italian convoys tracing supply across the Central Med. In addition, the UK Western Desert Force (supported by the arrived RAF unit) struck at the Italian 8 army protected by the fortifications of Tobruk.

The British offensive did not go according to plan. Bad weather proved to be a benefit to the Italian air and naval forces. Though it affected the Italian forces more severely, it also hampered carrier operations. Initial interception combats and subsequent air strikes against Force H in Malta resulted in heavy casualties (that is added Sorties to the units) on both sides. This proved favorable to the Axis due to the limited actions Force H could perform.

The combat die roll modifiers in bad weather, coupled with some initial bad combat rolls for Force H resulted in both sides adding relatively equal Sorties. Typically, the UK naval forces cause much more to the Italians forces than they suffer. This being the case and with two Italian units to the UK one, the combats caused all units to reach 6 Sorties each. This works in the Axis favor as an air or naval unit can only remove 2 Sorties per turn. That leaves Force H with only two possible actions each turn, assuming the Axis do not engage it in combat.

On land, the Tobruk fortress held out against the British assaults. In USE, the only type of attack allowed against a unit occupying a fort is an Assault. Unlike Mobile attacks which can occur more than once per unit activation, only one Assault per activation is allowed.

Balkans - Romania joined the Axis after France fell. Romania had a Pro-Axis marker in it as a result of Bessarabia being ceded to the USSR. One of the events that occurs when France is conquered is the Axis get a free Political Success (rather than put a Pro-Axis marker in the Diplomacy Cup.) Richard used it to activate Romania. In addition, a pull of a Political Success marker from the Diplomacy Cup put a Pro-Axis marker in Turkey. With Greece and Romania in the Axis camp and Turkey seemingly not far behind. German forces released from France proceeded to overrun Hungary, Yugoslavia, and Bulgaria in the late summer and autumn months.

Turkey - Turkey continued to be the hot bed of diplomatic activity. A Political Success event caused it to lean Pro-Axis for several months after the fall of France. However, the sight of a large German army overrunning the Balkans gave the West the proof they needed to show Axis intentions were not friendly and so their own Political Success event caused the Pro-Axis marker to be removed from Turkey. But the constant power struggle between pro-Axis and Western forces in Turkey opened the door for the communist party to make ground and now Turkey leans Pro-Soviet. Despite me putting No Event markers back in the Diplomacy Cup to try to slow down diplomatic events, both Richard and I picked political markers against the odds.

USSR - Stalin continued to lean on its neighbors resulting its borders now growing to their full potential. Area Seized markers were pulled and so the few remaining Disputed Areas were ceded to the USSR.
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Mark Dey
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And now for the winter - it'll be interesting to see what happens in the Med during that time.
 
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Very Stout
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Sal, is there any chance this might be coupled with a Pacific sister game?
 
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Salvatore Vasta
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Mycroft Stout wrote:
Sal, is there any chance this might be coupled with a Pacific sister game?


From nearly the start of when I began designing this I've thought about a Pacific version as well. It's one reason why I use the acronym USE for Unconditional Surrender Europe. A Pacific version would be USP.

While I have a little data saved for it, I have not done any serious work on it. My efforts have focused on Europe for the simple reason that if I can't even get the Europe version published, I'm not going to lose more years of my life designing a Pacific version.

Some Pacific design thoughts I've had are:
- Most "armies" would be reduced strength garrison units. This works well on the Pacific islands as they won't need to trace a supply line.

- Air and naval units would still be handled as in USE. That is, it would be "fleet" level and use Sorties; it would not track individual ships.

- Japan's production would not be anywhere near enough to maintain a high level of activity for all its combat forces. Japan's GDP was not much higher than Italy's. If one has had any experience playing USE, imagine trying to manage the UK's air, ground, and naval forces with Italy's production points.

- USP will probably only have two factions.

Sal
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