GIJoe597: Oh no, what have I gotten myself into?
... The way I play this game probably doesn't fit well with an AAR. I try to create my own equilibrium with interesting AI wars and I am happy just to sit back and do some stuff once in a while. I am yet to play a game alone - I played a couple with my friend when he came over with his computer. He has only played one game himself, where he took over the world as UK, and I got to see his last marches to victory before we cut the game short. But he had difficulty on easy, which I heavily criticized him for, and it also completely messed up economy, with him having 100 trillion from capturing capitals and most other nations somehow being capped at 8,7 trillion in treasury. So, we took all difficulties on the highest, as it would seem reasonable to do for an experienced gamer (found out how they worked later and adjusted all except military to normal), and played a few games (listed in chronological order):
- One where we were Saudi Arabia, where we found out that the game was terrible because we set difficulty to very hard, meaning that none of the AIs would declare war against each other. Instead, the all declared war on Saudi Arabia, but with military superiority, we easily took over the entire middle east, and when we were finally running dry on units, facing Israel (having the scare of Egypt declaring on us, with us managing to broker peace), with evenly matches armies, my friend did a lot of guerilla warfare until suddenly surprisingly we won, despite them having almost the army size that we did. After that we didn't care to continue the game as it was very one-sided, the same thing happening repeatedly.
- Japan: We played a game first where everything went to hell because my friend expanded the industry too quickly, and we really couldn't be bothered, especially when we saw the military was gone (tought it was because we weren't paying any maintenance) - had only the ships yet that I had been using to defend from Chinese invasion. So, we restarted as Japan and I micro-managed the economy a bit and we were slowing paying off all debt that the Japanese had. North Korea declared on us - no worries, they will never come. Then suddenly China declared on us. To our horror, we discovered that we had apparantly accidentally sold our entire military, with no units left at all (that must be what had happened the last time) ... yes, I had done a bit of unit-design selling in the beginning, but only to rich friendly-minded countries with limited use for them
... Chinese troops landed, and since we were still starting off in the game, we didn't really want to try to fight this war without any military, so we called it quits.
- Netherlands: Definitely the best game so far. We got our economy going incredibly well and were making great profits, starting to make plans for the future. We were number one in tech and were allying with most of Europe. My friend had noticed that Germany would ally with us and he was often talking about how they would be the European aggressor (Germany or France, normally, igniting an all-European was against them), which wouldn't be good since we were right next to them. It quickly turned out that France would be the first to do that, though, and they declared on Belgium. First, no one reacted, and we were hestitant to do anything, waiting to see how it would turn out. It was excredibly exciting to watch the fights, but it become obvious was France was getting the upper hand. We want the Belgians to take the brute of the French force, knowing we were next, but it made sense to attack while the Belgians still had a few troops to shiled us with. The landscape meant that the French wouldn't have any straight access to our areas, despite having captures the Belgian city/complex on the norther coast. We declared and started using our airplanes to help the Belgians. Small skirmishes, and the excitement level rose. Suddenly, Italy declare on France, and this was a big turning point. France couldn't hold back, and now the Swedes (and eventually the Danes) declared on them as well. Suddenly, freed up from the advancing French units, the Belgians were doing better, and started pushing the French back. Actually, they seemed to be doing really well, and were continuing all the way to Paris. My friend really wanted us to expand our country (mostly because we had gotten messages about labour shortages) and knew this was our chance. We arrived late with our army, but managed to take Paris, losing 20-30 units, with the Belgians driving around in the area with a fairly big force (30-40 units), only sometimes shooting. Shortly after, France collapsed, with Italy now being by far the biggest European country. Spain had gotten a bit of lad as well, declaring late. The Beglians had gotten most of northern France, whereas we only had a little area near Paris, and the Begians has the city right next to Paris and shared the easter land with Denmark and Sweden (Sweden had driven 10-20 units all the way down through Denmark). To our surprise, we had an island and some land in South America as well. Venezuela attack a small island of ours with a ship, so we had to bring the three ships we had captured from the French down there to destroy it. The small bit of land we had in South America was somehow out of supply (cannot remember how), so we couldn't build anything down there. We were pondering sending transport ships down there, but found it too expensive. A shame, sincce our big expansion plan was now to get even richer and build 10-15 land fabrications in South American and try to take over one or two countries down there. We thought that transporting our army would take way too long and be too expensive. In the midst of all of these thoughts about the future, Germany declared war on us. We had thought about this earlier, but had forgotten about it a bit, thinking the entire Europe was allied and peaceful for dealing with the French agressors. We were in awe as the Germans right away fired land-missiles at us from Berlin, and since they had been peaceful since they start, they deployed a humongous amount of tanks, completely overwhelming us. We were still a bit weakened from taking over Paris, with our army not fully recovered, not back to its original numbers and wiith only 2-3 airplanes left. We knew right away we were doomed, but stayed around a bit to watch the Germans overwhelm us, despite our decent defensive positions. It really sucked, because I always cheer for the Germans and want them to win, so it didn't really feel good fighting them. But it was still awesome to get overwhelmed in this way. By far the best game, but I don't want to start next to the Germans again as I don't want to fight feelings of wanting to support them with feelings of wanting them weakened to eliminate the threat they pose.
- Algeria: We wanted to play an oil-rich nation which didn't have as good miliary as Saudi Arabia but had good potential. It turns out that Algeria was perhaps a bit too good of a country, but we didn't manage it properly and quickly ended up in a good deal of wars. First, it seemed easy, taking a few countries (even though we were very nervous when Lybia declared war, even though they were slow to come at us), but when we found Morocco, they used good Abrams tanks (I found myself thinking that US sold them some) and suddenly, without me noticing why, most of our military was gone. They really didn't seem to have that many units. I just think I had lost overview and mishandled many units, for instance getting them out of supply (often I had advanced too quickly before the supply could spread, and my friend was cautioning me), accidentally putting some in a bunker in the middle of a fight (thinking that was how garrisons worked), keeping the planes in the air and having them crash. My mishandling of the army meant that where we looked quite superior against Morocco, suddenly they were advancing on all fronts and we had no way to stop them. It was quite exciting actually, and I was conviced that the AI had done well (suddenly turning the battle with few men, deploying intelligently), but I guess as a perfectionist it frustrated me a bit to have lost everything and we never persued the end of the fight (having already decided that Algeria was much bigger than we had thought and we could be bothered defending such a big country, which is why we picked Norway afterwards, still wanting to use the rich lazy oil strategy).
- Norway: We played as Norway, with me playing through the night as my friend was sleeping. Managed to stabilize their economy and pay off all debt, becoming the biggest exporter of both military and industrial goods, although with a little too high taxes (75%, I think), but keeping inflation in control. The oil market was deteriorating, which meant that our economy wasn't as stable anymore. So, when we played the next day I started selling off our units to help the rich Mexico survive against the bankrupt US. I had also started a good deal of land-fabrications and a few air-fabrications, which might also be a reason why it was suddenly harder to stay in the black. Still, we wouldn't sell the Leopard 2A6 tanks we were making as they were to make up our army, just other excess units. However, my friend started selling off all our units - couldn't help himself as he liked the money and wanted to help Mexico. Then he also started selling oil to everyone units manual deals, making great profits, which I was complaining to him about abusing. In the end, our economy was doing quite well, with 50-60 billion in plus. However, the game was getting repetitive as nothing was happening in the world, more AI nations were getting bankrupt and it all seemed kind of pointless to wait for. We had also bought a Nighthawk II (as I recall - they were stealth bombers), which we were eager to try out. Since he had sold a few Leopold tanks and some interceptor airplanes to the Mexicans (he hoped it could help them battle the rediculous US airforce that was keeping the stagnant defencive lines in place), we had to wait to build up more army. In the end my friend obviously wanted to quit, so he just declared war pre-maturely against Sweden and started fighting them with our three air units and 18 tanks. I asked him to garrison our unprotected northern towns to see how that would hold up, but one didn't garrison in time and the Swedes took it, despite advancing very slowly. Our three air units were killing all the advancing Swedish tanks, especially when we loaded them with missiles (the first time we tried this). The war was fairly stagnant, even though most of our tanks had died, and in the end we might well have won it, but we really didn't care to pursue it as we had already decided on quitting (and he was going back home).
When I get back home to my stationary computer in February I plan to play a game with Israel and hopefully get a good feel of combat, paying attention to some of all the things I now know and seeing how well I can hold out against the 3-4 nations that will probably declare on me (I love to see it when Syria attacks with their huge amount of tanks). If I do too well in the Israel game, I might abandon it as some point, although I do have some plans for things a few other things I want to do in that game: take over as the US (saving and loading game as multiplayer) and selling all their units to Australia to avoid the US from bankrupting themselves (will probably also try starting with high resources and no debt for once to help the AIs) and to see how Australia will use the units (Australia never seem to engage in any wars, strangely, but always become quite rich), take over Brazil and build bridges over the amazon river, take over as Grenadines once they are rich (they had 26 billion in another game after 1,5 years) and buy and army (perhaps take over US to sell that army to them). Still, my main game that I have planned will be with Czech Republic (edit: no, with Hungary, since CZ neighbour Germany), who I liked to watch when my friend was taking over Europe with UK. My only plans so far are to build a few military good fabrications to gain on the expected rise in their prices and to saturate the market to make sure it doesn't bankrupt the little nations. Other than that, I just intend to build up some army with the current unit designs and see what happens. Maybe I will write an AAR about that, even though I'll have to get a good screenshot software that saves automatically, since I cannot be bothered alt+tabbing the game all the time to save screenshots.
grat2112: You're right, I just checked it out and it was hilarious to read. So casual about starting a world was, so careless and oblivious to his own demise, obviously using the mindset of a crazy senile dictator. For the first time I was rooting for a human player since reading GIJoe's attempt to conquer the world with the Grenadines.