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  #1  
Old August 12th, 2010, 01:14 PM
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Default Oh how I hate the Aleutians

Been here before & its always hard work, thought I would have a go with an infantry formation fool that I am & see how hard it is to stop the Jap infantry
So USA vs Japan went with
3 Infantry Co each with a platoon of Engineers attached.
Batalion Weapons Co consisting of
FOO
4 HMGs
4 37mm ATGs
3 81mm MTRSs
1 Jeep
12 Trucks.
Other units
3 Offmap 105s (12 tubes)
6 AA Guns/MGs & trucks
Expected this to be tricky Jap infantry are tenacious but boy did I get a surprise.
Things opened with 4 Jap planes sweeping in caused minimal damage & I got one but my trucks are vulnerable need to use with care.
Moving ATGs with wheeled vehicles in this terrain is not easy & now have to worry about planes targeting them.
Should have worried more we have spotted 5 tanks by the time the next airstrike comes in consisting of 6 planes, half my AA is gone & a few trucks perish. More worryingly everyones fast moving bet the AI got a nice snapshot so decide to mount a reverse slope defence where I expect the tanks to appear.
Thats not good the tanks are dragging there heels & I can now see several squads right behind them then 8 tanks crest the hill I can see the other 2 thats a full Company. Oh heck the one time I go full infantry the Japs decide to break out the armour. Some 105s rounds drop on them with no effect & the ATGs get 2 of them then it all goes a bit Pete Tong.
Jap arty opens up smoke takes 2 ATGs out of the game for the moment & drops a few bothersome rounds then the planes come back big style 11 I think ouch were they effective. I have 1 AA gun left its routed most of the trucks are burning 1 ATG is destroyed & 3 squads lost over 8 men a piece, ouch.
Worse those pilots were on the ball the tanks can see me, I am now well & trully pinned down & there infantry will appear next go the only good thing is there cant be that many.
Score one to the Jap Airforce I feel at least they should be out of bombs.
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Old January 10th, 2012, 02:47 PM

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Default Re: Oh how I hate the Aleutians

Hi.

I'm not a very experienced WinSPWW2 player. I've had a few periods where I've been playing fairly much. Every time I also went with US Army and wound up in the Aleutians. I never got past them either, because the IJA is such a pain in the rear hull. So I stopped playing for a while until i felt like giving it another go. Not wanting to admit defeat i pick US Army again, and lately I've been winning meeting engagements (before it was only defence I could manage if anything) with or without armor.

The Aleutians are not good for vehicles as we all now. But on almost every map (bar the ones crossed by a stream) you are able to find small paths of 'clear' ground that goes through all those -1 swamp abysses of tank death. So, finding these and planning your approach well can get your armor where you want it in time. Also the US armor is vastly superior to the Japanese in the beginning of the campaign (and probably for the rest I guess), so it can really make a difference. The ATG's is another option, but moving them into position is tedious work even with trucks. And their vulnerability to air attacks doesn't tip the scale in their favour.

Whenever I see Jap tanks I think "Oh thank god they bought some tanks instead of more infantry". Because the Japs always seem to bring so much infantry. So many of these insanely battle-hardened madmen that my own infantry do little else then spot and soak up op-fire. When first playing the Japs I quickly realized that I could not win if I relied on my grunts to do the main work. So I bought machineguns. Alot of them. And I'd like to argue that machinegun teams are one of the best weapons you can employ in the Aelutians. With good visibility, a platoon of HMG's can pin down a couple of companies worth of Japanese (since they always blob up and try to mass their way through my lines) and allow my armor or even infantry to advance and keep pushing them back.

Secondly, I buy alot of 81 mm mortars, locate the main body or bodies of the enemy and keep pouring on them until I'm out of tubes. Hopefully by then, they are depleted enough so that they cannot sucesfully advance anymore (but don't think for a second that they won't try).

So to summarize: Move quickly to favourable terrain and outgun the Japanese army, wich is not so difficult since they love putting their faith in riflemen and tin cans.

I am very much a novice at this game but I hope my post gave someone some inspiration for fighting in the Aleutians.

Spoon
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Old January 10th, 2012, 06:30 PM
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Default Re: Oh how I hate the Aleutians

I have a couple of threads related to this topic. I even started a new campaign with the U.S. to make a small AAR include some battles in the Aleutian Islands and Guadalcanal.
http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=48136

I remember in the first campaigns I bought Team Co 42. Then I saw that Sherman was stuck in the ground and tried buying companies of infantry supported by light tanks M3. In the early battles made ​​the difference. It is true that the guns are very important. But more important are the antiaircraft because in the first battles swarms of Japanese planes sent.
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Old October 3rd, 2012, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: Oh how I hate the Aleutians

Admittedly, the Aleutians were a very minor side show and also any USA operations in the pacific were also side shows to the main Marine campaign happening in Guadalcanal.

And both sets of terrain are really nasty, especially for somewhat green troops. They also penalise anyone who wanted an armoured or vehicle based core, in other words a typical US Army organisation aimed at Europe eventually.

So after a quick try of the nasty Aleutian terrain, I've decided to advance the start clock for the USA WW2 Long Campaign to 11/42.

Thus you get to choose European terrain or Pacific. And the 11/42 European battles are a minor scuffle with the Vichy French. First battle therefore is an opposed beach landing against them. Or advance the start one month and meet the Germans with your new boys - your choice.

Admittedly any armoured core user could have advanced to 11/42 anyway but that seems beyond the grasp of many newbies, and also I found a bug in the code regarding the end of 1942 opponents and battle locations in Europe (now fixed of course).

The early 42 US Army batlocs against the Japanese (Aleutian, South Pacific etc) are now only of use in one-off battle generator games - for those of a masochistic bent !.

The Japanese LC player may well meet the US Army there - but anyone opting for Japan in the LC has already opted for an infantry-heavy slog.

Andy
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Old October 19th, 2012, 12:05 AM

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Default Re: Oh how I hate the Aleutians

So I decided to look into this a bit. I'm playing the the first battle of the US long campaign, Aleutian Islands, and it ain't been too bad so far. I may be getting lucky though; they're sending hordes of those little things they call tanks at me, which must mean fewer points for infantry, and I haven't seen any enemy airplanes despite buying up some pretty significant anti-air assets (eight .50 Cal AAMGs, two 40mm AAs, one .30 Cal AAMGs).

Apart from those. My core is a force of two "Co Team 42" companies, one "Co Team 42 (2)" company, one "Bn Wpns Co 30", four snipers, an engineer platoon, a patrol of two scout teems. I generally picked the cheapest/worst units available (M6 Fargo tank destroyers) and I chopped out their off-map artillery batteries in favour of on-map M1897 field guns.

For support, I took a spotter plane and four P-40 Warhawks, two T-16 light tanks, five halftracks, a "Cav team 42" (motor recce), a Dsmtd Cav Pl+ (horse cavalry) and a Cav Transport team (so a short company of semi-motorized cavalry). That many horses in Alaska is probably unrealistic (mules somewhat less so), but they make excellent transport in that kind of terrain and are nice to have when the MG teams start falling behind. Also good for typical cavalry stuff: following those little creeks and ravines and sneaking a force of dismounts into the back with the artillery park.

The Aleutian Island Campaign really was pretty hellish: 5,537 casualties out of 144,000 participants. Over three hundred died at Kiska and they didn't even fight anyone. Attu had the worst casualty ratio of any US battle except Iwo Jima if you include the weather-related ones. So in that regard, it seems the biggest problem might be that the game's being too realistic.
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