O-I Heavy Tank

The O1 was a heavy Japanese tank prototype. A 100-ton and a 120 ton version were designed. The massive tank would have had a crew of 11 and a top speed of only 15 mph (25kts). The tank was designed in a number of configurations featuring 10cm or105mm main guns and secondary 37mm or 47mm anti-tank turrets and up to three 7.7mm machine guns. One version of the tank also featured two light rocket artillery canisters. A heavy tank of this caliber was initial designed to counter Soviet forces which proved superior in early war border conflicts in Manchuria.

Unit Attack Defense Move Cost
O1 9 8 1 9

 

Availability: After Japan develops Heavy Armor

Target Selection: 1-2 Armor-Class Units.

Super-Heavy: The O-1 cannot be the subject of target selection.

How might the Japanese player use the O-1 effectively?  Its move of one represents obviously its abysmally slow speed combined with its weight that would render it unfit for almost any small bridge in Asia – but the O-1 is as good in the game as it could have been in life – which is to say, it will make mincemeat out of Soviet tanks not to mention it will crush Chinese forces – It just won’t get anywhere very quickly.  An O-1 would be a nice addition to Japanese land forces in China.   Thus as a Japanese strategy investment in Heavy Armor is a good way to go – not only because it give you the Chi-To medium tank which brings your armor in line with the rest of the world but it also gives you access to this massive beast to crush all opposition.

 

 

The O-1 is available in the Amerika game from Historical Board Gaming.

Ha-To Artillery

The Type 4 Ha-To SP Artillery was a tracked self-propelled artillery gun developed by the Japanese army. The Ha-To carried a 300mm mortar firing a 374lb shell up to 1.9 miles. The unit represents self-propelled Advanced Artillery – which means that after you develop Advanced Artillery using the Global War-2nd Edition you can purchase this beauty!  Advanced Artillery supports infantry on a 1:1 basis, giving ATTACKING infantry a +1 combat bonus and artillery in Global War-2nd edition has first strike on the first round of combat – i.e. it fires and removes its casualties first.

Unit Attack Defense Move Cost
Ha-To 4 4 2 5

This unit is part of the Amerika game available at www.HBG.com

Chi-To Medium Tank

The Chi-To was a Japanese medium tank design. The 30-ton vehicle had a 75mm main gun and two light machine guns. Japanese material shortages in the war prevented this tank from entering full production.

Japan is one of the nations in the game that begins with expensive armor (8IPP). This cost reflects the overall poverty in Japanese armor quality both in terms of armor, gun size and reliability.   The Chi-To represents overall improvement in Japanese armor that reduces the cost to the same as other nations.

Unit Attack Defense Move Cost
Chi-To 6 5 2 6

 

Availability: After Japan develops Heavy Armor.

Blitz: The Chi-To may blitz.

The Chi-To is one of the units that comes in the newly released Amerika game at www.historicalboardgaming.com

Shinden Fighter

The Shinden Jet fighter is another Amerika unit that you will be able to use quite effectively in Global War-2nd edition with the rules here (or in the soon to be released Amerika Global War Companion.)  First, lets get to know the front from the back.   The right side of this image is the front and the back has a pusher-propellor and two stabilization fins.

The Kyushu J7W Shinden was a Japanese advanced interceptor with a rear pusher propeller. The Shinden was a land-based interceptor intended to counter the American B-29s which were causing significant damage to Japanese infrastructure. The Shinden had four 30mm cannons. The aircraft had excellent maneuverability but a range of only 530 miles. While only two prototypes were completed, the Japanese estimated that over a thousand could be produced between April 1946 and March 1947 to defend the home island.

Unit Attack Defense Move Cost
Shinden 7 7(6) 2 11

 Availability: January 1946 (if you are not using variable game end rules, make the Shinden available when Japan has Stage 3 Jet Aircraft.

Interceptor: The Shinden can only cause casualties to aircraft.

Land-Based: The Shinden cannot be placed on an Aircraft Carrier.

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Kyushu J7W Shinden

The finishing touches are on the GLOBAL WAR COMPANION for Amerika which means that it will not be too long – hopefully for ya’lls Christmas present you will be able to use all the base pieces from Amerika in Global War.  So lets start with one you are really going to want to use as Japan the Ki-91 bomber.

he Ki-91Ki-91 Bomber was a 4-engine long range bomber designed by the Japanese during World War II. The project was cancelled before reaching the prototype stage. The proposed bomber had a range of 5,592 miles. It would have carried eight 20mm cannons for self-defense and about 8,000lbs of bombs.

In order to get ahold of it you will need to develop long-range aircraft technology but this is much much more exciting – it has a range of 15 – which means it can support a whole lot of operations from Japan.  That puts this bad boy anywhere from Calcutta, to San Francisco to Novosibirsk.  There is a requirement for you to first build at least two other long-range aircraft but that’s a small price to pay for the impressive range the Ki-91 can provide.

 

 

Unit Attack Defense Move Cost
Ki-91 Strategic bombing 3(1) 15 15

 

 

WHY THE HS-293 IS A GAME CHANGER:   HBG’s new Ordnance set features a number of new weapons – including a few you can use to outfit your strategic and medium bombers for anti-shipping duty.  The development of the HS-293 requires Stage 3 Rockets and Stage 3 Radar – making the average availability of this weapon for Germany July of 1942 (if you roll in an average way).

The HS-293 is one of my favorite weapons because it really allows the Germans soIMG_7809me new possibilities.     Strategic Bombers can now be used to target convoy lines – giving them an added ability they would not have.

ORDA 4.0 convoy raiding by aircraft

4.0 Overview: Some aircraft from Global War expansions may engage in Convoy Raiding. The procedure is similar to a submarine raiding except as follows:

4.1 Combat Air Patrol: A raiding aircraft must be on combat air patrol and capable of raiding.

4.2 Escorts: Escorting surface warships get a single attack against the aircraft unless those aircraft have first strike.

4.3 Advanced ASW: Players who have developed Advanced ASW automatically get a single attack at “2” against each enemy raiding aircraft raiding the convoy line where they have IPP to lose.

The aircraft must be on combat air patrol – which gives it a range of only “1”- however a bomber could quickly make the trip down to somewhere on the African coast, or out to the Azores which would put it in good striking position for the convoy lines.    A great house rule to represent the FW Condor (and other) long-range anti-shipping aircraft would be to give bombers a patrol range of “2” which would put them out into the Atlantic (or elsewhere) enough to really be a menace.

– You might be wondering why exactly players with Advanced ASW get an attack at the aircraft – the reason for this is that Advanced ASW would include the use of CAM ships which could launch aircraft to defend the convoy.

 

Download the Ordnance Rules here for free

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Global War -2nd Edition Optional Rule

When Germany attempts to annex Slovakia the British and French player must decide jointly to allow or contest the annexation of Slovakia.  They do this after the German player’s Combat Movement Phase.  If they allow it, proceed as outlined in the Global War-2nd edition rules.  If they contest it combat occurs between Germany’s attacking forces and the forces in Slovakia.  If Germany wins, Britain’s income is reduced by 3 IPP and France’s by 1 IPP.  However, if Germany loses or retreats the British and French are empowered to resist and instead Britain gains 3 IPP and France 1 IPP in Peacetime Income increases.

2025 Development is proceeding much faster than I anticipated.   The coalition of China, Russia, and the Islamic Caliphate vs. the EU, US and Pacific Coalition (India, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Australia, South Africa) has gone through a couple spins and wound up being a load of fun each time.

We have 3D printed some test units and man are they fun to push around the board.   The fleet below:  Stealth super carrier with 2 F-14Ds (in your mind you can replace those with F-35s because that is what will be there) – next and LHD landing ship, a Zumwalt Class Stealth  destroyer, a CGX Guided Missile Cruiser and a next-generation guided missile submarine – Maybe the labels, and the sharpie borders lets you know this is of course not the final version but a vision of what will come to be.

No release date yet, but development is moving along quickly and I hope to get these rules perfected and for everyone to enjoy as fast as possible.

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JOINT DEFENSE OF A SEA ZONE – an uncommon problem that illustrates the conflict between Alliances – A question was posed to me recently that inspired this post.  As I work on rule clarifications for Global War, someone pointed out that while there are rules for members of the same Alliance sharing a land zone and defending jointly there isn’t clarify around what happens if the Soviets and Allies are attacked in the same sea zone.   I wanted to take a moment to explain, not just the mechanics but the point of the rule:

First, the rules – as amended – say that they could defend together – however, as with the rules for land zones state: “If player can’t agree on which casualties to select they may resolve the issue with a die roll.”   This is one thing when you have a US and British player with relatively similar victory conditions but another thing when you have a Soviet and British player who are just barely allies in the first place.   As you can imagine the Soviet player might be completely unwilling to cooperate, not because they “need” the fleet but because strengthening Britain will allow them to invade earlier and give the USSR less opportunity to gobble German owned territory.  On the other hand, you can imagine that if the USSR is on the ropes they might be desperate for Allied lend-lease and willing to cooperate!

People have been asking about the MOLOTOV-RIBBENTROP PACT so let me give it an explanation with some strategy notes here.  Here it the full text from the rules with some explanation….

Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact 

14.2 Molotov-Ribbentrop (Nazi-Soviet Pacts): The Nazi-Pacts include the Treaty of Non-Aggression Between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Molotov-Ribbentrop) and their secret additional protocol, as well as the German-Soviet Trade Agreement. This set of agreements may go into effect July 1939 (or later) if the German and Soviet players agree verbally.

Pact Provisions.

(a) Non-Aggression: Germany and the USSR agree not to declare war on the other.

(b) Sphere of Influence: 

a. The USSR may combat move units into each of the Baltic States and place a Soviet roundel there. No combat occurs.

b. The USSR may combat move into East Poland and Lubelskie and place a Soviet roundel in each after Germany occupies Warsaw.

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NOTE: This is important because if the Germans occupy East Poland and Lubelskie without the pact, Soviet income goes up, but see strategy note below

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c. The USSR may invade Vipuri (Finland). Germany may not Control/Align Finland until Germany is at war with the USSR. USSR may not attack other zones in Finland.

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NOTE: What happens here is important to understand.  Normally, if the Soviets attacked Finland Germany would control Finland if they were not at war with the USSR. That would mean that so long as there was a Finland to speak of – that Russia did not take the whole thing, then Germany would have control of Finland – not Alignment which is full incorporation but “Control” – which means it could basically run Finland, using Finnish income to build Militia, Germany might even lend-lease to Finland.   The Soviet could run over the rest of Finland but then they face the possibility of Swedish aligning with the Germans per table 4-6 – So this is a benefit to the Soviets, allowing them to get one of their Victory Conditions which is Vipuri.  

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d. The USSR may not attack Romania or Hungary.

(c) Trade: Germany and the USSR agree to mutually beneficial trade. As a result of the pact. The players do not actually exchange resources.

a. Germany gets 5 IPP per turn bonus income.   (NOTE: This is per turn, every turn even above their maximum and they don’t have to be at war to get it)

b. USSR gets 3 IPP bonus income and a free research roll.  (NOTE: This is ever turn, Russians get 3 IPP and a free roll on the technology chart)

(d) Basis Nord: Germany may build a submarine base in Murmansk. This base is eliminated immediately if USSR and Germany are at war. It may not be attacked by a nation that is not at war with the USSR.

(e) Baltic-White Sea Canal: Once per turn a German submarine may move to Leningrad (SZ16) during non-combat move and subsequently be placed in the White Sea (SZ6) for no additional movement costs.

(f) Northern Sea Route: Germany may move one naval unit per turn via the Northern Sea Route. This unit must begin its non-combat movement in SZ5 or SZ6 By expending its entire movement allowance (including Naval Bases bonus) it is placed in SZ7.25

NOTE: There really aren’t any great convoy targets in the North Pacific right away, your sub – if you send one – will have to scoot South to pick up some of the British lines once it gets there.   In an upcoming German set we are going to release a Merchant-Raider which is what the Germans really did send through the North Sea.  Another note – why in the world do you even need Soviet permission to use the North Sea Route? Good question – and the answer is that you need Soviet ice-breakers to get through as well as possible other help they can provide (weather reports, fuel, navigation charts etc..)

(g) Termination: Either player may declare the pact nullified at any point in time by announcing it. Once nullified the pact may not be signed again. The pact ends automatically if Germany and the USSR are at war.

STRATEGY NOTES

Here is a strategy I saw used in play testing that can be interesting.   As the Soviets – refuse the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.  Germany will roll into Poland but won’t take East Poland and Lubelskie to avoid a big Soviet income increase.  That leaves those territories in British hands.   While there won’t be much there guess what the British will do?  Start building Militia, maybe even a minor factory.  If they can tempt Germany to hit East Poland they help the Soviets….then again…do they want to?  The British have to fear a super strong Soviet Union and so…who knows what will happen – but it does provide an interesting twist.