USA - From the ashes

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USA - From the ashes

#1 Post by GIJoe597 » Jul 29 2017

Hello, I had not intended this to be an AAR. I was simply playing the game to see what is what. At any rate, 1914 start, Sandbox.

*some initial thoughts/surprises

I was surprised by the lack of facilities on the map, worldwide. The USA only has a few air bases/fields across the continent. So few that moving planes from production to other air fields can be problematic. I lost a few when they ran out of fuel.
The tiny range of almost everything.
I like the music

Game starts at Jun 28, 1914 *important Note: I do not use Merchant Marine for unit sales or moving my military.

Condensed first few years;

Right at game start I set max spending on Infrastructure and Research. I moved all others to recommended, with the exception of Social Assistance. I have left it at its starting value.

We start with a huge deficit of Electricity. We produce about 50% of what is needed. This slows/reduces output of other resources and commodities.

With only the following military production I embarked on a "modernization" of the military.

7/2/8/0 Land/Air/Naval/Missile

The units were all terrible in my opinion, but we did the best we could. Moving through research as quickly as possible. I concentrated on Society techs first, in order to get the improvements to build and infrastructure. Next was any tech which gives a research bonus, then Transportation techs, to unlock better units and capabilities. Anytime a better unit became available, and it was a demonstrable improvement, I researched it.

Our starting military was 133 units.

Ground units
85 Inf
10 Eng
31 Recon Cavalry
7 Arty

Air units
3 patrol/recon

Naval units
62 Capitals (9 Pre Century Monitors, 32 Pre Century Cruisers, 21 Battleships of the 20th Century, ).
52 Escorts/Destroyers (18 Pre Century Destroyers, 34 DD's of the 20th Century)
30 Subs
41 Pats (Pre Century Gunboats)

It is important to note, not a single surface ship has ASW capability.

We observe the world as we interact with it, trade deals here and there.


July 5th
Central Powers confirm friendship. Germany confirms support for Austria-Hungary and will join in any military action.

July 28th
Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia
Netherlands declares they are neutral
Germany offers neutrality to Great Britain, GB refuses, concerned about German ambition.

Aug 1st
Germany declares war on the Russian Empire.
Italy declares neutrality
Denmark declares neutral
Serbia and Russia Empire form an alliance

Aug 3rd
Germans invade Luxembourg
Lux falls
Germany DoWs France

WWI has started in earnest

Things proceed as normal, for some reason, I cannot form an alliance with Great Britain.

Germany is shelling the coasts of GB

****I posted the following in a Steam thread. Will cut and paste here instead of retyping.****

I have struggled to get adequate units to Great Britain. My best fighter has a range of 500kms. My best Strategic Bomber, 499kms.

None of my starting or easily researched Escorts (Destroyers), have anti sub capability. German subs are ranging along the coast of GB. The German surface fleet is moving at will along GB's coasts.

Not more than 1 hour ago, I finally managed to get a convoy through to England. We had to land in Aberdeen, after routing north around the German navy. I was excited to finally get some units there. I had 7 tactical bombers, 7 strategic bombers and 7 fighter/interceptors.

Along with the transport ships, I have brought 2 surface action groups. Each one consisted of;

2 x BB
1 x CA
4 x DD

Each SAG was lead by 4 of the best submarines I have available.

I positioned the tac's near the coast, moved both heavy fleets in, sat in ambush. Three engagements with the German navy, each one where I was sitting in ambush went badly. I only have 2 tac's left, I lost 18 of the 22 ships. Most of the time I never even saw the enemy subs until they opened fire.

Two battleships limped back to Bath Iron Works, in Maine, after again taking a large detour north around England and then to Newfoundland. They move so slow, top speed 22 kms.

At any rate, here I am with my tail between my legs, back in the continental US, trying to marshal more forces and do it all over again.

Each capital ship loss really hurts, in previous games. SR 2020 or SRU, I could shrug it off and order 20 more constructed. In this current game, I only have 8 Naval Production facilities. It will take me 560 days simply to replace the BB's, a year to replace the CA losses and six months to replace the DD's. Not even considering the subs lost.

The economy is so tight in 1914-1917 I cannot increase production capacity to counter losses. I am barely breaking even, money wise, for the last 3 years.

When it comes to land units, they are mostly leg infantry. I can produce 7 at a time across the USA. Then it takes them a month or more to walk across the country to get to a port. There are no Air Transports yet.

What I am getting at; I am fighting a huge war at home with logistics and I have yet to engage the Central Powers in land combat. There are no Allied forces on mainland Europe.

The Russian Empire is reeling, there was a revolution, Lenin took over. They do not seem to be able to stop Austria-Hungary or Germany. Moscow fell some time ago, the new Russian capital is Petrograd. It is surrounded on 2 sides by German forces.

The Central Powers have a production capacity of 21/5/9/0.

I, as the USA, only have 7/2/8/0.

***times passes as I watch Great Britain being slow hammered into submission by the German Naval. I am concentrating my research and production on DD's and Subs to counter the Germans.


May - Finally assemble a force and enough transport vessels to attempt a landing in Great Britain.

Well, I have no idea what happened. I finally landed in Great Britain 2 seconds after it fell. I landed about 150 units, a mix of Marines, (strongest unit) and Mounted Infantry. When we met the Germans, my units melted. There is no other way to describe it. They were in supply and fighting, but they just ... melted. According to stats, my units were better and I had max Pay and Training.

Nothing I could do but entrench and watch what on paper was an inferior German army annihilate me. Sorry Great Britain.

I cannot wait to see if I can get back to England to liberate them.

Older/retired gamers, who do not tolerate foolishness.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#2 Post by GIJoe597 » Jul 30 2017


May 1st - Since the last report in May of 1920 I have been trying to get both Subs and DD's with strong ASW capability as well as better capital ships.

I have researched every design currently available, which leaves me with the following vessels;

Capital (unfortunately, Cl's are classed as capital ships and not escorts)

BB - Colorado class - 1920 design, a fine replacement for the existing early century BB's.
CL - CL-40 Brooklyn - 1933 design, more than double the spotting range of any other vessel.
Sub - V-4 Argonaut - Range is 10,000 kms better than previous best sub, slightly slower, better Air Defense, Sub Attack and Surface Attack

We also have a new transport design, the AO.1 Kanawha. It is amphibious with a capacity of 5,000 tons. It has moderate air defense and less range but the increased capacity means less non combat ships per fleet and more fighting vessels.

There are 8 Colorado BB's ready to go with 8 more in production. It will be another 518 days till they are out.
8 CL Brooklyn's currently active.

Sadly, we have zero Argonauts. There is no capacity for them at this time.

On the land front, we are continuing to build Marines as they are the best unit we have. After losing 50 battalions in our failed attempt to liberate Great Britain our new goal is 150 battalions slated for Europe, and 100 for Asia/Pacific.

We now have the ability to manufacture a tank, the MK VIII. The problem is, it is not any better in any category, than our existing Marines and Mounted Infantry. Will not be ordering any, we need the production capacity for other things.

Basic Infantry are still being built, they will be used for garrison duties in the continental U.S. and key locations overseas.

Which brings us to colonies. We have 7 and I am concerned with their ability to defend themselves. Of particular concern is the Panama Canal Zone. If that falls into enemy hands, it will prevent us from "quickly" moving naval forces from the Atlantic to the Pacific. We cannot lose the canal.

Panama Canal was annexed. An Air Base, Sea Pier, Barracks, Fortification and Gun Emplacement were constructed. Fourteen brigades of infantry, 7 tactical bombers and a full detachment (3 brigades) of garrison units will be stationed here.

Anxious about the numerous former colonies, now defenseless, scattered around the Caribbean, we also annex Puerto Rico. Its proximity to our bases in the U.S. Virgin Islands worried us.

Germany has holdings in the South Pacific, German New Guinea. I can see the Kaiserliche Marine has been active in the area as they have captured some sea territory from Australian Papua New Guinea.

There are 5 colonies in the Pacific, one of which draws my attention for its Rubber resource, American Sulu. It only has one hex of Rubber, but we are already using all available resource locations and barely able to keep up with demand. I am undecided if we should dedicate forces and resources so far away from home at this time.

Somoa and Kiritimati are expendable in the short term. Guam, with its proximity to Wake, is a vital island on the air route from the mainland US to the Philippines and American Sulu. Guam also has Rubber reserves, which seals the deal. Guam annexed. A Barracks, an Air Field, and 2 Rubber Plantations are constructed.


Since the failed landing in Great Britain, we have been working on increasing Electrical output. As you may recall, we had a shortfall of about 50% of the power we needed. By adding Coal Power plants, we have been able to bring production up to a level that meets and slightly exceeds demand. This has come at a cost, we have been hovering at an Unemployment rate of 2.1% for about a year. There was not much choice, the World Market has been lacking excess Electricity for years now. The increase in power output has alleviated all issues of production where power was the lacking resource. In an attempt to offset the drain on our available workforce, we have created Industrial Parks in the central US. The majority of Power plants were moved here, where the supply is at 90% or higher. The Coal Power plants around the US which were in poor supply were scrapped. As we did this we also constructed the new plants at the Industrial Parks. With the higher supply levels we found that each individual plant we placed here would replace 2 or 3 others which were located elsewhere. Thus reducing the demand on our workforce somewhat.

While this was underway, we also noticed other facilities which were in areas of the country with poor local road/rail service. These facilities were scrapped and moved to better locations. Some Ore Mines were consolidated over one large area holding reserves, near Spokane, WA. Then Supply Depots were constructed to increase the level of supply.

Keeping our military in Reserve status as well as entertaining all trade requests and manually adjusting the price I will sale for has resulted in a slight surplus over this period.

Older/retired gamers, who do not tolerate foolishness.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#3 Post by ZEvans96 » Aug 07 2017

Wow! What a well written and thought out AAR! You need to keep going.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#4 Post by GIJoe597 » Aug 07 2017

Oh boy *holds head*. I know what you are doing! I was being facetious as this was with the pre-release version of the game. With the changes made recently they do not affect saved games. :(

That being typed, I did manage to add to this.

The last entry to this failed campaign.

I have advanced enough in game to land a sizeable force on Mainland Europe. It is 1925 and I landed with 250 Mounted Infantry(tech 1929), 21 Marines(tech 1925), 21 Tanks(tech 1918), 21 AA(tech 1918). The sea armada I had amassed consisted of the following;

73 subs (48 tech 1925)
12 Colorado BBs (tech 1920)
2 CA -45 Wichita (tech 1939)
4 Porter class DDs (tech 1933)
4 AO.1 Kanawha Amphibious Transports
8 AE civilian cargo ships

We rallied off the SE coast of Great Britain. Broke into individual Task Forces and sailed to the coast of Germany. Once all was in place, we declared war on Germany. The subs went in first to clear the way, followed by 2 fleets of BBs/CA/DDs. We moved the Kanawha to Emden and unloaded the Marines, all 21 battalions. We captured the port, moved out capturing nearby towns/facilities.

We were able to move approx 10 hexes before we were stopped cold. Stacks of Central Powers units swarmed us. Tactics, combined arms, air support, nothing mattered. Sheer numbers whittled us away and again, my units metlted. This is Normal Military difficulty. Once I saw it was a lost cause I even switched it to Easy. Even on easy with entrenched units and what on paper was better stats, we continued to melt.

So yes, masses of units will beat proper formations and combined arms in this WWI game. That is not always the case in previous titles. However, I guess this does represent, to some degree, the combat style back then.

I admit defeat here. One too many times have my units melted in combat, when they should be better based on stats. Great Britain will remain part of the Central Powers.

Older/retired gamers, who do not tolerate foolishness.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#5 Post by seathom » Aug 11 2017

I'm wondering if your forces were well supplied? Did you build supply sources once on the mainland? It seems surprising that your units could not progress.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#6 Post by GIJoe597 » Aug 11 2017

Welcome Seathom

I was in great supply, in defensive positions, entrenched with arty and plane support. Each hex has 5 Mounted Inf, 1 Tank and 1 AA. Hexes behind those had 7x Arty in them with supply trucks between each two hexes. The non dramatic version is the Germans had so much more experience and it was the first combat for my troops, they were green. Also, they outnumbered me approx 5 to 1.

This was a pre release version and I have since admitted defeat since the updates/patches do not affect save games. I started a new game with all patches/updates.

Older/retired gamers, who do not tolerate foolishness.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#7 Post by way2co0l » Aug 14 2017

Interesting how this played out. I'm hopeful that the allies can put up more of a fight with recent patches. That way you'd only need to provide a supplementary force rather than the whole army and likely see much different results.

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Re: USA - From the ashes

#8 Post by GIJoe597 » Aug 14 2017

I will be returning home in about 4 days. I plan on starting a new AAR with the most current version. I will play the USA again as I find it interesting to watch what the ai does around the world. Oddly enough I am playing a game right now in SRU with a 1936 start and I was never able to get an alliance with the allies. I defeated Germany and Japan and still the allies hated me. Now I have a situation with it being 1952, I have zero allies and the world hates me.

I think it may have been the nukes I researched and built, the Spheres of Influence, or a combination of both. I type this, because in the game I detailed in this thread, I also could never form an alliance with Great Britain.

Older/retired gamers, who do not tolerate foolishness.

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