Grog Jones
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Part 3 of the latest sessions report.

To recap. This is a combined DOD3/WIFFE game, previous sessions reports submitted by Nailsworthnobby. Everyone is now at war, although the US has only just declared war on Japan, and Italy is not yet at war with Russia (cowards!)).

World leaders (with geek names)
Greg (Jes Nogger) – Russia and Communist Chinese
Simon (Nailsworthnobby) – Germany
Laurence aka Lax - Italy and Japan
Andy W (aka ‘Swiss’ or ‘Classic’ Andy) – Commonwealth
Andy P (aka ‘new’) – US, France, Nationalist China



Nov / Dec 42

Germany allies with Finland. The US passed war appropriations in the previous US entry phase and now gear up. The Russians, worried by the new found pallyness of Finland and Germany attempts a coup, but countercoups instead. Finland is now adjacent to Germany on the political display and in danger of being aligned/activated – this leeches several Russian reinforcements off to garrison the Finnish border.

Democrats win initiative and the USA surprises no one by doing a combined, sailing some ships, reinforcing Honolulu and then a Mar Div on walkabout from Kwalajein sends 2 Jap subs, a FTR and a NAV fleeing from liberated Eniwetok (but not for long – read below). CW do a Naval and consolidates the remains of the Med fleet in Alexandria.

An Italian ENG has restored the harbour facilities and leisure complex in Gib so the fleet (now mainly conscripted Fr and CW ships) moves out into the Cape, IT subs hit Bay of Biscay and destroy CW convoys (5 sunk 1 aborted). Germans move boys forward but do nothing. Jap and US dance around the Marshalls and the Jap MAR corps remaining in the Marshalls kills the lone US MAR div – a short range US FTR is shot down in the preceeding dog fight.

Russia positions in the rain and no attacks go in – waiting for friendly snow, which as it happens is falling in large quantities outside in real life but refuses to materialise on the Eastern front.

Democrats now have the chance to move it all along. The French try to clear the one of the Japanese fleets blockading their troops in Madagascar but get cuffed for their efforts. The US port strike the Japanese boats in Sydney (long journey) but the surprise is worth it as they sink the amphib. More sea battles erupt as the USN cleans the IJN out of the Tasman sea, then engages with the IJN in the Marianas with TF-58 (Battle of the Marianas part 1). The IJN get surprise and choose surface. The BB Mutso sinks when rammed by the Indianapolis (which means that in 45 they’ll need to find another ship for Robert Shaw to sink on). The Hyuga (BB) aborts and the Mogami is damaged in exchange for the Chester and Louisville both damaged. Next round the IJN get surprise and avoid combat. Chicken.

Fascists get up and get busy with the Italians moving out of Gib to position for the next phase, in the Eastern Med the Italians move out of Greece and into Egypt with 3 more corps on transports now that the CW naval threat is a dim memory. In the Pacific the Japanese again hit the CW in the Azanian sea sinking the Glasgow, and trying to hit the US incursions across the Indian ocean. No search rolls work against US, that’s been a while now and is beginning to become a bit of a worry for Lax. Nonetheless, Tojo scrapes together everything afloat and comes out into the Marianas en masse as the Pacific Grand Fleet (7-8 CVs, lots of heavy metal), but search rolls go as expected and he fails to find TF-58.

The weather all turns out nice again, fine everywhere and the Democrats are about to go very large. Various uninteresting side shows as the USN moves stuff around on a naval, but the main act is arrival of the entirety of the Pacific fleet into the already stacked Marianas.

The main event (cue the Rocky fanfare) – Marianas part 2. In the red corner, the entirity of the IJN Pacific fleet, in the red, white and blue corner, every US carrier and floating asset in the Pacific. Andy P considers the roll critical and spends intel to reduce the roll, then rolls – 10! And Laxy rolls 3. The IJN is all in, the US is surprised. Andy P ponders (briefly) and then spends the rest of his intel (yes, he’d built up that much) to reroll his search dice – 10 again. Cue a collapse in a heap of Simon like proportions.

Marianas 2 match report: 10 vs 10 aircraft. Lots of planes fly as FTR. Air combat – round 1: US CV ftr aborted, IJN CVP bomber shot down. Round 2: US bomber cleared through and (19) IJN front CVP fighter shot down. Round 3: US aborts a bomber and IJN aborts a land based bomber. Round 4: US no effect and IJN lose a CVP ftr. (Going well so far Mr P). Round 5: US clears a bomber, IJN clears a bomber (finally). Round 6: US gets a bomber aborted, IJN bomber shot down. Round 6: US gets an aborted CV ftr, and in return clears through the last IJN bomber. Two bombers get through on either side.

Now AA. Lax uses the remaining surprise to equalise AA rolls (the US navy is covered in guns), the rolls are worst on 2 dice – Andy P rolls 9/10, Lax rolls 2/10 – one jap plane shot down and no points pressing, USN 6 points get through vs 14 ships. X, 2D. The CV Hiryu is sunk, the CA Kikami is aborted and the CV Soryu is damaged. “Scratch one flat top” says Andy P. Laurence reels away from the table in shock. The grand fleet flees and aborts to Truk – a bit of an error in judgement as we shall see. We also see the effect of land based air, a lone (rather mediocre) US land based FTR was giving Andy P a +1 edge to the entire air combat sitting at the back of the FTR stream. Lax's land based FTR had been shot down or neutralised in previous impulses and turns.

Side note: at about this point, as some of us hail from north of the border, we press Greg’s newly cleaned oven into service to celebrate Burns Night with a mid afternoon haggis supper. Haggis (some vegetarian), tatties and neeps, washed down with good malt whisky, the ode to the haggis read by Lax and Greg imitating bagpipes. You may need to check wiki for some of that or seek advice from a Scottish friend).

Reinvigorated by haggis, and affronted by developments in the Pacific, the Fascists decide someone has to pay and for Lax that means Swiss Andy, the Japs fire off the naval in the Azanian Sea again and clear it down to 1 remaining lone CV but again fail to close the deal.

Italy DoWs Portugal and storms in smashing Lisbon with a combined invasion and encirclement ignoring the rivers in the surprise turn - this is a trick the Italians have history with, but usually involving forgetting the river was there and trying to invade with cavalry. Portugal goes whilst the IT Territorials continue their slow march down the East Coast of Africa taking Tangynika or somewhere and pressing onto the Mozambique border.

Finally the Americans spot the Mexican force moving towards Galveston carrying their Alamo flags and amazingly the US public still seem happy with losing Homeland cities to the Mexican liberators.

Then the Russians get a go with the unseasonable fine weather and launch a Christmas offensive with Zhukov swallowing another O chit.

OK, this didn’t go too well. Three Russian o-chit attacks go in against toughish but do-able targets – the attacks are either across the Vistula or are under the (by now massive) umbrella of Luftwaffe ground support which now means that all defending stacks can be doubled in factors if the planes get through. The +10 shot rolls a 5, the +7 shot rolls a 7 and the slightly dodgy +5 shot rolls a 3. Damn. No advances made at all. What a waste (as Ian Dury would put it).

Democrats back in and the weather finally turns to snow in Europe. If it gets to the Germans it will preclude any counter attack rubbish – possibly. If it gets to the Russians, all those white print units are frothing at the mouth. But how likely is that? The US uses the opportunity to eliminate the bold Mexican incursion into the homeland – questions are asked in congress about illegal immigrants.

The USN then proceeds to inflict an absolutely crippling blow. First up, port strike on Truk – Shokaku sunk and a cruiser sunk, many others damaged or aborted. Then – much thinking and girding of loins – the Marines storm ashore on a 2:1 attack against the 7-3INF garrison, roll the 17 and and catch the grand fleet in port and flipped. Sunk in harbour: Zuikaku and three heavy cruisers (Myoko, Atago and Chokai), captured in port the BB Hyuga (need to find a new name for that one then) and the CA Kitakami. In one blow, the US Navy has ripped the heart out of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Shock and awe or what?

Then the turn ends. A turn that was a bit of a set back for the Russian's progress towards Berlin, but an absolute kick in the groin for the Japs, who will now have to rethink their entire Pacific/Indian ocean balance. Especially as a formidable US task force (2 Essex class and a number of fast BB) have rebased into Bombay.

Jan/Feb 1943

Politics before bedtime. Russia bids high and gears up (now producing at 48, to Simon's lasting distress), the CW respond by also increasing production of tea cosies and Gibraltar commemorative plates - they will also be getting large amounts of lend lease BP from the US. Japan pre-empts a treaty offer from Adolf (plays 0f) and Italy plays its owed DOW against Portugal, and ends politics with a 1. Simon is now beyond disgust with the vagaries of the dice and resorts to the sofa and end of night whisky, as do the rest of the world leaders.

Back to the table in a bright and not snowy morning, and we start a short session before closing the weekend. Democrats get initiative and do navals to shore up supply and convoy lines. The US sinks a Jap picket cruiser and then once again demonstrates the art of island hopping by taking Saipan. Andy P briefly considered an all out raid on Tokyo with a MAR stack but postpones it till later.

Side Note: we have noted a preference for what we like to call the dreadnought strategy in Andy P - pile eveything into one huge heap and plow it forward over anything that gets in the way. It's not subtle but it has a certain je ne sais quos.

The commies sit glumly in the mud (rain weather) waiting for the promised big freeze. The Fascists also use the bad weather to bring subs out, but to no great effect – US convoys are now shipping the resources to Britain and the subs need to eliminate the escorts in order to do a search and seizure. The Italians are as usual shipping people all over the Med – forces are building up in Egypt ready for the attack across the Nile, and are also massing in the Spanish Canaries and South Morocco. They also once more clean the clocks of the French outside Dakar. The Japs however are not so lucky – first battle of the Solomons, a small USN task force (only two carriers) is ambushed by Mobile, but the US planes handle the Japs somewhat roughly, shooting down both CVPs. The CVL Chiyoda is damaged and Mobile runs for it. More of the remaining IJN has come out into the Marianas to try to catch the US TRS invasion fleet (still there after taking Saipan). The covering US land based air finds the top box IJN carriers, protecting the transport fleet from involvement, but the Japanese manage to shoot down a land based NAV at the cost of an aborted CVP. The US then abort their transport fleet, leaving the remaining Japs ready for the counter from Pearl.

We roll weather (still no snow for the Russians to play with) then decide there isn’t enough time left to complete another turn so end the session. Goodnight campers.
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Colin Raitt
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A battleship captured!
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Andrew Pleass
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polate wrote:
A battleship captured!


Am thinking of renaming it the 'USS Robbie Burns'
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Laurence Williams
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Yes and it still stings, reading this is not good for the soul it had all been going so well too but alas for Japan the jig is up. Good job it will be many weeks before I have to face it all again.
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