A few things to help new players get started: I end up talking to a lot of folks about the rules and autopsying games that went awry – the following points will help you learn the rules and have a good first game.
Read the National Reference Sheets – The biggest mistake new players make is reading the rules and not reading each nation’s national reference sheet which contains the special rules the govern each nation. If you don’t read these sheets you’ll be constantly surprised by your enemies actions! You don’t want that do you? Encourage all your players to read all the sheets so everyone knows how each nation behaves.
Understand the 1936-1939 Starting Strategy: Simply put, everyone begins at peace. Most nations don’t start with their full income level – this simulates their economies not being geared for military production and their governments’ historical levels of military spending. Axis players must read very carefully the British, French, U.S. and Soviet Reference Sheets to avoid actions (mainly attacking neutrals and major powers until you are ready to strike decisively. If the pre-war gamesmanship isn’t exciting to your game group start with the 1939 scenario.
Victory Conditions: The game is won and lost on victory conditions. Play to them. They balance out force inequalities: For example: Its easier for Italy to win their victory conditions than the USA.
Convoy Lines: The convoy lines are what your submarines use for raiding. Read the submarine raiding and escort rules very carefully. The Convoy Lines are not used for tracing of lend-lease or supply paths. Don’t’ confuse the two.