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Subject: The US player strategy question rss

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Jon M
Canada
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What do you find are the best combination of units to put in the cities for the US player on their initial set up? Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks!
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Pete Belli
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Florida
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When setting up, put a couple of hovertanks and helicopters in coastal city areas where they can fight hard and then die. You'll need them to get reinforcements in the early turns, and they can destroy valuable enemy units.

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Jon M
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Thanks!!
 
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Robert Stetler
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In the old game, my typical deploy (with some variations) was:

Bombers (6):
2 - Cleveland
1 - Detroit
2 - Indianapolis
1 - St. Louis

Helicopters (9):
2 - Boston
1 - Washington, D.C.
2 - Buffalo
2 - Memphis
2 - Milwaukee

Hovertanks (12):
1 - Detroit
2 - New York
2 - Pittsburgh
2 - Chicago
1 - New Orleans
1 - St. Louis
1 - Houston
1 - Dallas
1 - Los Angeles

Mobile Units (9):
1 - Tampa
2 - Minneapolis
1 - Kansas City
2 - Denver
1 - San Antonio
1 - San Francisco
1 - Portland

Infantry (24):
2 - Philadelphia
1 - Washington, D.C.
2 - Miami
1 - Tampa
2 - Atlanta
1 - New Orleans
1 - Houston
1 - Dallas
1 - San Antonio
1 - Kansas City
2 - Phoenix
2 - Salt Lake City
2 - Seattle
1 - Portland
2 - San Diego
1 - Los Angeles
1 - San Francisco

The above is intended to put a few hitters on the front line, but primarily provide strong retake opportunities (for partisan card gain) on the two primary first turn targets - Houston and Washington, D.C. A strike of 5 bombers is possible on either target, with the air force able to group up afterwards at a central area like north-west of Atlanta. Obviously savvy invaders may simply decline to take those two targets - indeed may avoid actually taking any cities (what we used to refer to as "tourism", as you visit but don't stay), or even the more controversial/debatable tactic of not attacking occupied areas at all until late game. In those cases, at least the above deployment allows quick deployment of strong, unit balanced forces where they're needed quickly.

Units outside immediate first turn use are deployed so that their mobility is considered - faster units further back, slower units closer to the action. The western side of the map utilizes infantry and mobile units as speed bumps, little direct opposition is deployed there initially.

The new game throws a pair of considerations into the above deployment.

First is the mobile unit transport ability. Frankly I don't think this is important enough to strongly reconsider the deployment, as defensively they're more likely to come into play in the west and most of the units there are either in immediate danger (and thus likely to be eliminated before use) or can evade and redeploy quickly enough without help. The Minneapolis and Denver mobile units can instead pick up any infantry provided by partisan cards in the west, as they go about their usual role of deploying the initial speed bump line.

Second is the city substitutions. Kansas City and Buffalo are gone, Las Vegas and Colorado Springs are in. The loss of Buffalo causes some serious concern for the defense of the east, but little can be done about it. Kansas City and Colorado Springs are close substitutes for initial deployment, but rather dire changes for mid-late game defense. Again, not much can be done for it, except grin and bear having a city 1-2 turns closer to danger and no longer able to provide cover for 2 other cities. So for changing the above, IMO swap the deployment of Kansas City with Las Vegas - the infantry and mobile will serve a similar thin wall defense role, deploying into the Rockies instead of the plains. That would leave swapping Buffalo for Colorado Springs, but here I think the deployment of helicopters into the latter would not be well advised. Instead I'd consider swapping the two mobiles in Minneapolis into Colorado Springs, and then the two helicopters from Buffalo into Minneapolis. The mobiles will serve well in being able to sprinkle possible partisan card infantry into the Rockies, south, or plains. While the helicopters will have almost enough mobility to swing east where they were needed to be in the first place.

So changing the above deployment for the new version would result in:

Helicopters:
0 - Buffalo
2 - Minneapolis

Mobile Units:
0 - Kansas City
0 - Minneapolis
2 - Colorado Springs
1 - Las Vegas

Infantry:
0 - Kansas City
1 - Las Vegas
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Jon M
Canada
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I will definitely be taking this into consideration the next game! thanks!
 
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Marcel van der pol
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In general, you want to have fast-moving troops further in the back while having plenty of hovertanks and infantry on the front lines.

I generally try to create several good "pockets" with the ability to strike and good defense.

- Colorado Springs & Denver
There will be plenty of partisans arriving in the west and the Rocky Mountain sector as well as a decent amount in the south. However, Partisans need some support in order to generate a good threat on a city. I usually align my forces in such a way that I have two Bombers and Two helicopters as well as one or two hovertanks in Colorado Springs and Denver area. These can threaten both the Southern Sector as well as the southern part of the Western sector, making good use of partisans that spring up in these area's.

- St Louis, Memphis and Atlanta
Partisans are much rarer in the east. Reinforcements in the east arrive in the form of more quality troops like hovertanks and mobile units. Nevertheless, I usually form another pocket in Atlanta which will rapidly redeploy to Memphis and St Louis once the eastern invader starts to seriously threaten Atlanta. From there, the pocket can threaten both the Southern Sector as well as the south part of the eastern sector. However, should the Eastern invader want to grnid through Washington and further north, you will need at least 3 or 4 bombers further north than Memphis and St Louis as they cannot reach Washington from there.

Most of these "defense pockets" should be setup at the end of US turn one; depending what you want to do in turn one you can choose to have the bombers further back OR have them closer to the front lines where they will be able to do something in turn one.
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Jack Schneider
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Quote:
- Colorado Springs & Denver
There will be plenty of partisans arriving in the west and the Rocky Mountain sector as well as a decent amount in the south. However, Partisans need some support in order to generate a good threat on a city. I usually align my forces in such a way that I have two Bombers and Two helicopters as well as one or two hovertanks in Colorado Springs and Denver area. These can threaten both the Southern Sector as well as the southern part of the Western sector, making good use of partisans that spring up in these area's.
Quote:


Yeah agree generally here since to me the greatest first turn invader threats are these what I called "air spearheads". These consist of a group of three helos and two bombers that at the end of Invasion movement end up in either and often both the zone just north of San Antonio and Coconino Plateau. The immediate threat to Colorado Springs is obvious from the South and I am not particularly pleased to see the Asians too quickly moving through the LA highway to that same Colorado Springs either. To try and prevent this I am seriously considering defending both LA and San Antonio with a couple of helos as part of the American setup. The hope is that if either the Southerner or the Westerner try to utilize these air spearhead ideas in those key zones he will either be unable to fully garrison these locales with five air units because he/she lost one or two bombers each to the attacks on LA and San Antonio or actually lost the attacks on those cities because he elected to not use his bombers and thus will lose any scouting helos to supply. I think the invaders must use their bombers on those cities because I believe that just a 5 on 2 attack without bombers against two helos would be too risky. A lucky American might bag both these bombers or a cautious invader won't try to helo scout these areas at all in which case you've accomplished your mission. He could still do a weaker garrison in the scouted territories but that's why I'm also strenghtening forces in Las Vegas for a possible 1st turn counterattack especially if a good partisan card comes up. Dallas and Colorado Springs both get a pair of tanks for action against the Southern player's air spearhead which is the more dangerous one IMHO.

Naturally US helo losses on turn 1 could be heavy but so might Invader bombers and of course retreat rolls could be rolled too. Also US rear mobilization will likely be slowed a bit especially since I'm seriously considering three Bombers divided up between Denver and St. Louis and maybe even 4. Gotta work out the full ramifications of that part on what happens in and near Washington in the East. When I try a few games solo with these ideas will try to report back.
 
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James Jenkins
Thailand
San Patong
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As the US I pretty much always played by the above setup the rear guys are the fastest, with some teeth on the beach so that they give the enemy problems, and are set up to be replced via partisan cards.

You don't want to have a partisan card pop up with tanks and mobile units and none are dead yet.

Despite the above, I am not going to put helos into a defense situation where the enemy can get a 2 or three to one attack.

I also try to set things up so that I am maximizing my potential to counterattack a city or mountain with combined arms, and minimizing theirs similar where possible.

The west key as US is to give ground and more. It leads to the enemy either being too spread out and thus easy to hit and knock off one by one, or they are too bunched up in garrison on the coast in which case you defend the rocky mtns.

South is a mobile battle for the oil fields and the terain is weird enough that sometimes it takes the invaders multiple turns to surround key cities.

East is of course a meat grinder, where the US should really try to hold the line of the appalachians, keeping and denying combined arms as above. Once the Invaders cross over, they are hard to stop.

Finally, I am not sure a lot of people do this, but mentally envision the liast final line of defense where you will hold your cities so the enemy doesn't get the victory.

If you look at the map, the Invaders need a LOT of cities, and pretty much need to get into the midwest solidly, and take all the NE seaboard, most of the west, and the battle hinges on the central plains.

Many many games it comes down to one last die roll, unless the invaders are clueless, or the US fumbles and tries to attack too much instead of falling back, giving ground where they can or need to.

I am always impressed with how well balanced this game is.

I'm glad they got a re-release going.



 
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Xelto G
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Ohio
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My priorities:

* Be able to counterattack D.C. if they take it with a full force.
* Get a defensive line set up in front of the main attack corridors. Don't attack with this line without good reason! Keep moving back one move per turn. You're using it mostly to prevent helicopters from being able to advance the invaders two spaces in a turn, especially from the west.
* Make them pay seriously for some cities. In general, if they can attack a city from only one adjacent territory, if you can get five units in there, do so. Just make sure you can also get those units out safely once they get multiple territories around it. Even-odds fights are fine when you're the defender. Stacked-against-you-odds aren't.
* Be able to gang up on and pick off stray units. (Though this is rarely something you can plan for: usually, you're trusting in the luck of the cards and grabbing attacks of opportunity.)
* Have a couple hovertanks and choppers in the important cities. You'll want them for reinforcements, and this forces the invaders to risk high-value pieces because they'll need to clear the cities quickly.

Now, note that I won't always attempt to retake D.C., especially if they used chopper movement to grab the territory between D.C. and Pitt. But you want to blunt the red-side rush and prevent them from getting up to New England easily, so setting it up so that you can counter-attack is a good way to go. I'll put infantry right next to DC, and hovertanks/choppers in spaces that can get to it. If they do the advance momement grab, kill the chopper and reclaim that territory, with enough force that they can't easily retake it.

On a similar note, make sure that you can do the same with San Antonio or Houston if the invaders take them but don't defend properly, OR if you get a good southern card that gives you an advantage-on attack to retake either of them. However, the decision to counter-attack in those cities is more of a thing that you need to decide on only if the cards and/or the defender's placements allow you a good, odds-in-your-favor attack.

For the south and west, you mostly want to slow them down so that they're a serious threat only after you've put the east through the meat grinder. So mechanized or hovertanks in places that can move quickly to create a defensive line. Placing a few choppers in high value cities (San Antonio, LA, Portland, and/or D.C) creates the needed replacements, and forces them to either risk bombers to take those cities, or risk not getting them at all.

Once you've done the basic stuff around the edges, then you want to place pieces where they can get to the fight in a single turn if possible. So mech/hovertanks in Vegas, for instance, can threaten SanFran, LA, or Phoenix. I'll put two bombers in SLC, and they can threaten the entire west and southwest. Two bombers in Indy and two in Chicago can threaten both D.C. and Houston (though they can only do an overflight on D.C.)

Now, I haven't played with the new board yet, but I suspect I would adjust things so that I can get a few extra units moving east-- the place is always a bloody mess, and you usually get enough cards for the west and plains to get replacement units fast enough, especially since you have two extra units starting there.
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Tod Hostetler
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California
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I found this thread while looking for some basic setups for the classic version of FA.

I'm wanting to introduce some friends of mine to FA via VASSAL. I personally haven't played the game in many, many years. One thing I note is that at least in VASSAL, setup takes a long time. I intend to shortcut that process by loading in a saved game that has all the figure placements pre-set. The idea is to get my friends right into the action, so they can see quickly if they like the game or not.

I'm going to use Robert Stetler's suggested setup (from this thread) for USA. If anyone is willing to post their Invader setups for West, South or East, I'll use them as well.

I understand that some cities have moved between classic and modern FA, but honestly if you are only familiar with modern, feel free to post your setup anyways. I'm looking for a decent starting setup, not a perfect one.

Thanks in advance,

- t


 
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Kevin Bertram
United States
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Except the re-release has NO SOUL!!!!
 
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Jak Mac Ewen
United States
Ohio
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keviny wrote:
Except the re-release has NO SOUL!!!!



why?is the re-lease a "ginger"whistle
 
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