WIFCON 2007, Lansing,
Seeking Group Picture
M/J '42 Imminent Invasion: After building up through the winter, the CW prepares to land on the continent once more.
M/J '42 Japanese High Water Mark: Japanese at it's maximum extent in China.
M/J '42 Backhand Blow... In Reverse: Guderian is blown off the map by a Russian offensive west of the Dnepr.
J/A '42 Crisis in the East: At the end of J/A the Germans have almost completely withdrawn from Russia, note the almost complete absence of troops in the center.
S/O '42 Invasion of Portugal: The CW prepares it's major landing in the north of Portugal.
M/A '43 Rabaul Dogfight: US Marines and Japanese reinforcements struggle for control of New Britain. Soon the Aussies will arrive to save the day!
J/A '43 Trench Warfare: The Soviets beat upon the German line which just one year before had seemed almost non-existent.
J/A '43 In the Footsteps of Wellington: Madrid and Gibraltar are threatened with liberation as the Germans high-tail it.
S/O '44 China Flexes: China's counteroffensive operations secure Hanoi and Sian.
M/A '45 Barbarians at the Gates: Soviet forces reach the outskirts of Berlin as the western Allies shred the Seine defences.
M/J '45 All but Over: The writing is on the wall now as the German defence loses cohesion.
J/A '45 The Fall of Finland: The Allies invade the new German home country from all directions.
Germany: Bill Duncan
Japan/Italy: Tom Beadle
USA: Ken Clark
CW: Paul Rae
USSR: Steve Balk
NOTE: This game report tends to be very Western Allies/Europe biased since that's where I spent most of my time. Pacific map colour provided by Ken and Tom.
Germany declares war on Poland, quickly rolling up the Polish defences and shooting down the Polish air force in flames. Lodz falls at the cost of a German infantry corps, but Warsaw hangs tough as the weather worsens. Britain and France declare war on Germany, and Britain's Force H consisting of 4 carriers and 3 battleships sorties to the Western Mediterranean, soon followed by Britain and France declaring war on Italy. A surprise port strike on the Italian Navy sinks half of Italy's transport shipping, and sinks or damages several other major combat units. The four speed three range Italian transport was sailed out of port away from the Allied fleet, as a result this unit was spared from the port strike. British troops invade Sardinia, taking the capital of Cagliari, while French take the northern port. Italy takes out French Somaliland, gaining a Vichy chit. The Lybian camel corps advance into Tunis is blocked by a British Infantry Corps.
Warsaw falls to the Axis and the German army redeploys west. British troops go to France in increasing numbers, led by Gort and Wavell. Italy lands an infantry division in Sardinia to annoy the Allies, but it is hemmed in by French and British troops. Germany begins work on the half-completed Graf Zeppelin.
Denmark falls to a lightning German assault. Britain continues to threaten port strikes on the Italian fleet, moving Force H to the Italian coast while the battlewagons patrol the Western Mediteranean. The Italian navy sorties under an ineffectual umbrella of naval air and engages the British battleships only to take heavy losses once again. Only 6 combat ships remain operational in the Italian Navy.
Noticing that the British transports are otherwise occupied, Germany invades Netherlands in uncommonly fair weather, conquering the country in short order.
British forces in Sardinia finish off the Italians which rashly landed there. Little activity occurs and the US elects to rebase the fleet to Pearl Harbour.
A conservative Chinese setup gives up Sian and several other Chinese cities without a fight, as well as the southern resources. The Japanese make some progress in the south, taking Kwei-Yang, but for the most part the front remains quite static for most of the game, punctuated by the occasional Japanese assault and frequent strategic bombing.
In fair weather Germany storms into Belgium, taking Antwerp and Liege and isolating Brussels. The Anglo-French armies advance into Belgium to meet the Germans, anchoring their line on the Ardennes. Germany attacks the allied line, pushing them back into France, but follow up attacks on both British and French sectors both stall badly with several losses. Italy attacks into southern France with a risky but successful attack through the alpine passes lead by Graziani (Allies call blitz, Graziani would have been the mandatory loss).
Germany throws an o-chit on Rundstedt and punches a hole in the French line, pushing closer to Paris. The BEF starts to withdraw, abandoning a mech corps and an artillery flipped in Belgium and heading for the channel ports. French troops move to hamper the Axis advance and Paris prepares for a siege as Italian troops ooze into southern France. The Allies commit to defending Paris to the last, and refuse to contemplate declaring the city open.
The German army systematically destroys the French army while the BEF completes its evacuation in good order. By the end of the turn the Germans have invested Paris, while the Italians get as far as Toulouse and Bordeaux and surround Marseilles. British troops occupy Tunis, Algeirs, and Rabat in preparation for the inevitable French collapse, but the turn ends fortuitously before Paris can be taken.
Paris falls in short order and France negotiates peace. Throughout the rest of the turn German forces roll, unimpeded, south towards the Pyrenees. Bad weather sets in as the German Army reaches the Spanish border. The French Navy engages the remains of the Italian navy, now reinforced by two Roma-class battleships. Heavy and repeated actions ensue, seeing several ships on both sides sunk, The Italian navy has practically ceased to exist, with the Roma damaged and all but three heavy cruisers sunk.
Level 4 Vichy France is established with the Italian taking the rump. North Africa and Syria stay Vichy, Senegal, declared the new French home country, and much of Africa goes free, along with Indochina and the Asian/Pacific minors.
USA Gears up.
British troops build up in England in preparation for Germany's next move. The Kriegsmarine sorties inconclusively to the Faeroes Gap and then rebases to Bordeaux.
The Kriegsmarine comes out again to raid the convoy lines but is instead found by the main strength of the British fleet. The Graf Zeppelin is sunk along with the Scharnhorst and several cruisers. Only 4 German ships make it back to port in good shape, while British losses are trifling.
Italian subs ravage the Cape St. Vincent convoy lines forcing a late turn convoy reorganization that costs considerable CW production, but similarly represents the zenith of anaemic Axis efforts to sink allied convoys. Few new subs have been built and no more are due to arrive, from this point on Axis sub strength dwindles to negligibility.
An unfortunate footnote to the turns action, the Queens were intercepted by Italian subs in Cape St. Vincent and sunk with a motorized corp aboard. It is the most significant naval loss the CW has yet suffered.
With bad weather in Europe further delaying the Axis hordes at the Spanish border, the British navy air arm and Axis naval air battle it out in the Western Med resulting in much of British carrier air power being shot from the sky and one carrier damaged. The British Navy perseveres however, aborting the Axis naval air, and although the carrier fleet is withdrawn to England at the end of the turn, the British navy reigns supreme in the Western Med.
Germany declares war on Spain, which aligns to CW. The Spanish army sets up heavily on the border, with just a single garrison in Madrid and another covering possible landing sites in Er Rif. British control of the Western Med prevents Axis amphibious forces form landing in the rough terrain around Tangiers, however the transports evade the British pickets and land several small forces on the long Spanish Mediteranean coast. Cartagena and Almeira fall as the Germans expend their 2nd o-chit to breach the Pyrenees defensive line. Tactical air disorganizes Spanish defenders all along the line, but despite this advantage the Spaniards manage to repulse the German attack in the central Pyrenees passes, while the German advance on the Biscay coast proceeds with some difficulty.
Commonwealth reinforcements rush to Er Rif and southern Spain, but as the German army reorganizes and pushes forward it's clear the Spanish defence line is irrevocably pierced. By the end of turn, Bilbao has fallen and the Pyrenees defenders are mopped up. The Wehrmacht advances on Madrid in overwhelming force as German marines enter Malaga, two hexes from Gibraltar. British Battleships find the Italian transports at sea in the western Med and sink the Italian amphib.
CW reinforcements, all too few, only have time to execute a short delaying action while slowly withdrawing through Gibraltar to Tangiers. Overwhelming German air power rebases into southern Spain. Sardinia is evacuated as Er Rif is reinforced. The remnants of the Kriegsmarine sorties into the bay of biscay, sinking an empty CW amphib and damaging the Spanish transport.
Spain is conquered and the Italians gain a windfall in the form of the damaged Spanish transport and several cruisers which are quickly repaired. At the end of each turn the Italians have been demanding ships from Vichy, through the course of the game two slow battleships will be taken and six convoy points. Two battleships (the Richelieu and one older one will be scuttled by the French).
In fine Mediterranean weather, air battles rage over Gibraltar as the Germans send ground strikes to disorganize the rock's defenders. Marines in assault boats cross under fire from the Costa del Sol and the sky blooms with German and Italian paratroops. Gibraltar falls to a +7 assault, sealing the western end of the Mediterranean. Commonwealth troops hold firm in Er Rif however. Axis troops quickly overrun Portugal to complete their conquest of the Iberian peninsula. Von Bock lands in Algeria as the Axis make a feint for Er Rif.
Japan declares war on CW. Captures Singapore, Batavia, Rabaul, and Hong Kong in a land offensive after taking naval. Japanese marines land at Trincomalee in Ceylon but a CW mechanized corps, the only available reserve in the area, is rushed into Columbo, temporarily preventing Japanese conquest of Ceylon.
Italian and German paratroops take Malta after the garrison is disorganized and put out of supply. Italian divisions retake Sardinia. An Italian expeditionary force presses eastward into poorly defended Egypt from Libya, Balbo, an anti-tank gun and a mechanized corps have been on the Boarder with Egypt since the initial setup phase. The German army redeploys its armoured forces eastward from Spain towards the Russian border, leaving strong garrisons in Spain and France.
The US passes up a 30% chance to DoW Japan in order to pass war appropriations at turn end.
Axis win initiative, and Japan declares war on USA. On a supercombined impulse, Japanese troops invade and captures Manilla, overrunning the US sub fleet, killing 1 sub and capturing another (forcing 2 to rebase). Japan from this time forward will never fail an attack on a red hex. Yamashita invades and captures Pearl Harbour after flipping all three units in the hex (2x WP infantry, 3-factor AT gun) and rolling a 14 on a +8 attack. Two US carriers are sunk in the overrun, along with a cruiser and a BB. One BB, the Arizona, is captured, renamed the Arizona-son by the Japanese and becomes the flagship of the Japanese Imperio-capitalist Navy. Later that turn, US marines based on the hex next to Pearl with an infantry invasion + MacArthur based in Midway counter-attack Pearl harbour on a +4 attack and fail (Reserve US marine was re-organized on the West coast and brought in for the attack). The Marines (hex next to Pearl) and Nimitz (based in Midway) remain pinned for the next year and a half, but also pin invasion force to Pearl. Dutch Harbour and Pago Pago remain American for the rest of the war. America successfully declares war on GE/Italy and goes to total war.
Italy declares war on Greece and invades the west coast of that country, working their way across the Peloponnesus towards Athens. Germany lines up on the border of Russian East Poland, its intentions obvious. Von Bock returns to Europe from North Africa. No attempt by the Axis to clear Er Rif will be forthcoming.
Athens falls after the two units in the hex are flipped with the Italian stuka, and the Italian and German paratroops drop one more time from the sky. Subsequently, Yugoslavia aligns to Italy and Rumania aligns to Germany. In clear weather, Germany declares war on the USSR, which has set up a strong defence on the Dneiper in the south and around Vitebsk and the forest line in the North. Germany chews up the speed bumps in Poland while the Rumanians clear Bessarabia.
Graziani rushes from Athens to join with Balbo to press on Cairo and Suez. An American motorized corps and an Indian infantry corps arrives in Suez only to be overrun by Italian tanks. Suez falls. Commonwealth troops invade Vichy Morocco, Vichy France remains inactive. The Moroccan coastal ports are quickly captured for future use as an Allied staging area.
Defence of Ceylon is taken over by the Free French MTN corp as the CW mechanized corps is sent to Europe around the Cape of Good Hope. The US fast battleships and carriers base in East Polynesia as the slow battleships, formed into Task Force 58, steam to Europe.
Commonwealth troops build up in Morocco and England. The port of Tangiers is expanded with American help and more fighters are brought to the theatre to counter Axis port strikes, which have damaged a couple of transports.
In the east, Stalin detects a weakness in the armoured spearheads approaching the Dnieper and throws his o-chit on Zhukov. Russian armour rolls out from their defensive positions, attacking the leading German columns, shattering Guderian and putting the Germans on their back foot. The first Guard Banner armies are nominated. Germany elects to retreat, pulling back over the course of the turn to the Dneister and the Polish border.
Ceylon is cut out of supply and the black print French mountain corps is flipped, Japan then takes Ceylon in a +14 attack with a roll of 11.
Commonwealth troops invade and take Lisbon, while a 2nd landing south of Lisbon is destroyed by a German counterattack. Over the course of the turn, the invasion force in Lisbon is replaced by Wavell and mechanized forces, preparing for a breakout.
Soviet troops assault the Dneister line, pressing the Germans hard. The German front is badly stretched as holes start to appear. A huge gap yawns south of the Pripets which the Germans struggle to fill.
Commonwealth troops land in northern Portugal as Wavell breaks out of Lisbon, accompanied by more seaborne invasions and naval gunfire. The Allied presence in Portugal expands as troops move inland and more follow on corps land at Lisbon and Porto. Americans join the CW troops in increasing numbers. The Axis are barely able to contain the beachheads.
In Eastern Europe the weather goes bad, giving Germany a much needed respite during which the major holes in the line are plugged.
The US Fleet, attempting to rebase to Perth, is caught in the 1-box in East Polynesia by the Japanese fast carrier fleet. In the ensuing Battle of East Polynesia, the US fleet manages to get 7 surprise points but excellent air-to-air dice by the Japanese turn the battle into a US rout, with the loss of 2 carriers to no Japanese losses. Prior to the battle the US battleship North Carolina intercepted the Japanese fleet with surprise points but due to defective armour plating sank (failed two "D" results with 2 armour).
The US carrier fleet rebases to the Atlantic to help with operations in Spain as it waits to regain some strength. Allied troops expand the Porto beachhead in bad weather, advancing on Ferrol and Vigo.
The East front starts to take on the characteristics of trench warfare. The Soviets advance hex by hex against a stubbornly resisting enemy.
Ferrol is taken by the Allies and further reinforcements join the fray through that port. A lone Hungarian corps defends Vigo. The Allies are operating in the Western Med in strength again thanks to the port of Tangiers and Free French troops advance to liberate Algeria.
Soviet troops push into Romania and fight hex by hex into Eastern Poland. In the Pacific, Japanese forces seem to be massing for a possible invasion of Australia, so the US carrier fleet departs the Atlantic. The Japanese consolidate their gains.
Vigo falls to the Allies as Wavell blitzes out of the Lisbon pocket in concert with Allied paradrops and invasions in southern Spain. The Axis defenders in Spain start to withdraw as the situation is beyond their ability to contain. Western Allied air power is building steadily and starts to take its toll on the Axis.
The US fleets' arrival in Australia forestalls any invasion attempt. With the US fleet basing in Brisbane, increasing numbers of US troops arrive in Auckland. The US marines are rescued from Hawaii and sent south to prepare for operations there.
The Americans pick a strategic target and focuses on Rabaul, which the Japanese player has lightly defended by a corps and a MTN div. The hex next to Rabaul is taken by US marines who storm onto New Britain unopposed. Nimitz joins the marines however they are all flipped due tot he terrain. The US fleet sorties into the Coral Sea but is soundly thrashed by the Japanese fleet, losing 3 more carriers sunk, as hot Japanese air dice make themselves felt once more. Cut out of supply, Nimitz is killed by the Japanese counter-attack but the Marine unit manages to retreat to New Guinea (Blitz is chosen by the defender with a poor roll by the Japanese netting an "18" result). A mountain div now holds the west portion of New Britain with Yamashita and one other corps holding Rabaul. A subsequent counter-attack by the Australian infantry and garrison retakes the hex, destroying the mountain div.
Allied troops advance in Spain, killing disorganized corps left to their fate by the retreating Germans. Allied paratroops are dropped north of Madrid in an effort to hamper the Axis withdrawal. A Free French consisting of the Algerian MTN corps and the Senegalese MIL land next to an undefended Barcelona, occupying that city on a subsequent impulse, though flipped and out of supply. Allied troops press on Cadiz in an effort to clear the approaches to Gibraltar for the necessary ground assault.
With the weather shifting to storm in the South Monsoon zone, the US decides to strategically redeploy to take Kwajelein or Pearl harbour and moves the fleet. Suddenly, with a weather roll of "1", it is only rain in the South Monsoon zone. The Brazilian fighter (of doom) ground strikes Rabaul on 2s and manages to flip the entire hex. The Marines decide that now is their chance and in the rain, with the assistance of the adjacent Australians, decide to attack. Luck favours the ignorant as the attack is determined (even with full ground support) to be only a +3 in the rain. A "19" is rolled (much to the consternation of the Japanese player), killing Yamashita plus a corps and a gun, and the giddily victorious Marines storm ashore.
The Allies approach Madrid as Allied troops isolate Gibraltar. The paratroopers are positioned ready to drop on the rock, but a short turn nips the plan in the bud. It has been a miserable summer of rain and storms, which does much to strengthen the German line. The Soviets launch a two pronged offensive vs German army group center just west of the Pripets, their spearheads threatening to cut off significant German forces. German counterattacks beat back the advancing Russians however and the salient is evacuated, restoring cohesion on the front.
Gibraltar is retaken in fine Meditarranean weather, airstrikes, paratroops, naval blockade and gunfire making the assault almost trivial. French troops enter Tunisia as the Axis troops in Spain are pressed back to the line of the Pyrenees. An amphibious assault on Bilbao fails with heavy loss of life and the access corridor of escape from Spain is kept just barely open. Madrid is liberated as the Germans abandon its garrison to its inevitable fate.
The Germans pull back slowly towards the Vistula under constant Soviet pressure. The Luftwaffe has been wildly successful against the Red air force, taking much credit in allowing the Germans to withdraw in good order. Soviet troops battle around the outskirts of Ploesti in Rumania.
In remarkably good weather, Allied forces invade the south coast of France in force, taking Toulon and the Riveria. Axis counterattacks do some damage but overall the beachhead is quickly consolidated and expanded, the lone Italian division defending Marseilles quickly dispatched. This new landing causes the last Axis forces to evacuate Spain.
Konigsberg falls and Russian troops reach the Vistula. In the south, the Ploesti oilfields in Romania fall and German resistance there starts to disintegrate.
Tom sweats over the map as Ken flexes manfully.
The British carrier fleet sorties to the Italian Coast, clearing it. The Allies stage several landings, taking Sardinia and Corsica which are now out of supply. Tunis falls and Free French forces advance south to Tripoli. Axis pressure compresses the Marseilles beachhead a little, but there are bigger fish to fry. Cagliari is expanded and becomes the new base for the slow battleships of TF-58. Italy uses the captured Spanish transport to sail into the teeth of the British carrier fleet and extract the Milan militia, which has been stranded in Malaga since the recapture of Gibraltar, redeploying the unit for the defence of Italy.
Bucharest falls, Russian troops cross the Carpathians and enter Hungary while the southern wing swings through Bulgaria and to the Yugoslav border.
The Allies land in northern Italy, taking La Spezia by assault and landing south of Venice on the Adriatic coast. Reinforcements to southern Italy are abruptly cut off, only one German militia corps has made it south of the Po river, and Italian strength in southern Italy is also quite weak. The turn ends before German armoured reinforcements can counterattack the vulnerable Po river landing.
Soviet troops cross the Vistula as the Germans fight for every inch of soil on the central front.
Basing from Rabaul, the US invades Kwajalein with an all-infantry assault on the island held by anti-tank weaponry. The invading American motorized corps storm ashore with a fine roll of something like 15 on a +7 attack or so. A major surface action ensues between the Japanese and American fleets, with the US fleet coming off somewhat worse, losing several heavy cruisers to only 2 Japanese sub losses.
The Allies gain initiative and a double turn. The line on the Po is strengthened as US armour reinforcements attack southwards towards Rome. Tripoli falls to the French and preparations are made to send them even further east. Russia is over the Vistula in strength now, but the German lines are still solid.
Truk is captured by the US in a daring assault led by the US Marine armour funny division which is tragically destroyed in the fighting. Chinese forces, building steadily over years of relative quiet on the front, start to go on the offensive but the front won't move too far.
Sicily is invaded, Messina taken by paradrop and Syracuse by amphibious invasion, however the rolls are bad and the paratroopers flip, as do the British troops clearing a weak Italian garrison from central Sardinia. The liberation of Malta is also achieved, again with heavy allied losses. O-chits are used to reflip HQs and Palermo falls before the end of the turn. More bad rolls as the American armour bogs down one hex from Rome after clearing away Italian mechanized corps covering the approaches. Hopes for an August surrender of Italy are dashed.
The Free French army commences landing in Egypt and presses towards Suez and Cairo. Russian troops conquer Bulgaria and enter Yugoslavia, reaching Belgrade. O-chit after o-chit drops on the central front but progress is still slow.
Pearl Harbour is recaptured from the Japanese after only flipping 2 of the defenders with yet another joint Australian/Marine operation. This time the US engineers die a glorious death after rolling a net "20" on something like a +4.5 attack. US fighter rebasing becomes much easier, especially with the United States' advanced fighter building program kicking into gear. China liberates French Indochina by taking Hanoi and bloodily repulsing a Japanese counterattack.
After the July/August disappointments, September/October proceeds smoothly. In a long, mostly fair weather turn, new invasions and paradrops are effected on either side of Naples, and Eisenhower's tanks blitz towards Rome once more with renewed Vigour. British troops land on the Biscay coast, denuded of Axis garrisons due to the crises in Italy and southern France, at St. Nazaire and La Rochelle. Canadian armour comes ashore at St. Nazaire in the follow on waves and crushes Model, who has been hastily railed to block this new incursion. Nantes falls without a fight, although German counterattacks crush the La Rochelle landing.
Rome and Naples both fall as the turn continues, sealing Italy's doom. Suez and Cairo fall, and Tirana in Albania is taken by a late turn invasion/paradrop. Axis troops flee out of Southern France, heading for the Seine. The Spanish, Southern France, and Northern France allied armies soon link up as more Allied armour pours into newly captured Brest and Nantes. Force H, the British carrier fleet, 8 carriers strong, is withdrawn to England for reorganization and redesignated Force Z.
Italy is incompletely conquered, and with Yugoslavia about to fall to the Soviets, Eritrea becomes the new home country.
Japan is marshalling its forces to retake Truk, and the US fights to maintain supply to the embattled island. A major naval battle between the US and Japan in the Solomans ensues, resulting in 3 sunk US carriers to a single Japanese carrier sunk, the only one lost all game. The US tenuously maintains supply at the end of the turn. Chinese Communists retake Sian, but after further bitter fighting the front does not move any further east.
The western Allies pursue the Germans to the river Seine, isolating Lyon and Vichy. British armour oozes through the gap between the Seine and the Saone as a beefy 4-2 French Partisan occupies Lille. A late turn attack on Lyon kills 2/3rd of the defenders but the Allies fail to take the city. In Italy, Venice and Trieste fall as the Allies blitz north across the Po Valley and up to the Swiss border, cutting off 7 or 8 German corps in northern Italy.
TF 58 and the British slow battleships steam eastward through the Suez canal, the British battleships stopping briefly in the Red Sea to lend assistance to France-British landings in Ethiopia and Sudan in preparation for the assault on Eritrea.
Japan takes a supercombined and launches the expected assault on Truk, succeeding in a +8 attack. A 2nd naval battle in Solomans results in 3 more sunk US carriers bringing to 11 total the number of US carriers lost in the Pacific. The flipped US land-based air is cut off, out of supply in the Carolinas.
Eritrea falls by the end of the turn, and with Yugoslavia also conquered, Italy is removed from the war. The British land in Fredrickshavn in Denmark, and British cruisers start operating in the Baltic, helping the Soviet Navy clear out the German ore convoys.
Japanese troops overrun 6 Allied FTR2s in the Carolinas, but despite this setback the US is planning a fresh offensive.
The disappearance of Italian units from German defensive lines coupled with unseasonably good weather and Allied initiative leads to the collapse of the Seine defence. US armour charges over the river north of Paris, blitzing to the doorstep of Lille. Allied paratroops gain purchase on the east bank of the Seine south of Paris. Rouen and Lyon fall in follow on attacks. The Germans leave one corp to hold Paris and the rest of the army flees for the Rhine.
Allied troops invade the low countries, taking Rotterdam and landing north of Amsterdam, cutting off the 10-5 SS Panzer Corps in Amsterdam. American troops invade Bremen. An attempt to take an out-of-supply Milan fails. The German navy sorties to try and re-establish the Baltic convoys but in a series of engagements vs a British Swordfish unit, the remaining combat ships of the Kriegsmarine are sunk or damaged and never sail again.
The Russians push boldly to the outskirts of Berlin and Prague, with some Soviet units entering southern Germany.
Paris falls before the end of the turn and France is liberated.
In the Pacific, The US takes advantage of initiative to retake Truk on a +9 assault, it will remain henceforth in US hands, defended by a full stack of American armour. USSR declares war on Japan and sends forces south into Manchuria.
Fresh Allied troops flood into Western Europe as the Germans are pushed back towards the Rhine. The skies blacken with Allied aircraft as dozens of ground strikes go in all across Germany. The Luftwaffe, outclassed badly now, takes the worst of it. The Soviets push to Munich in the south and take Berlin in the north as the western Allies capture Hanover, Essen, Saarbrucken, Metz and Aachen, also liberating Denmark. However late turn assaults on Hamburg, Munich (Soviets), Dusseldorf (Allies) fail, and, out of steam for the turn, the Allies are forced to concede that Germany will survive in some form into the last turn of the game.
In the Pacific, French forces, fresh from conquest of Eritrea and morale buoyed by liberation manage to retake Ceylon from the Japanese. The Japanese fleet bases in Tokyo.
Bill Duncan points dramatically and Steve mugs for the camera as Germany crumbles...
The final German enclaves around Hamburg, Munich, and Stuttgart fall to Soviet assaults and Dusseldorf is taken by the western Allies. Finland, a quiet sector throughout the war, now becomes the focus of Allied & Soviet effort. Soviet paratroopers reposition to threaten Helsinki and Soviet spearheads take Petsamo and flood into southern Finland. A British force under Alexsander lands at Hango but takes losses and is disorganized by fierce Finnish resistance. More British and Americans land, but the Soviets need no further assistance to take Helsinki, which falls well before turn end. Germany is completely conquered!
French, British, and American forces vy for control of Saigon, but multiple assaults over multiple impulses, with both attacker and defender reinforcing see Saigon still in Japanese hands at game end. An American grab for Shanghai is initially successful but its defence is stymied by Japanese domination of the China Sea, and much unrecorded carnage occurred there (generally the suicide of the remaining US carrier force), but the brave sacrifice of these ships did prevent Japanese reinforcements from reaching Korea for the planning o-chit assault on Vladivostok.
With all sides exhausted, July/August and the game as a whole grinds to a close, a narrowly won Allied victory.
Final Wifcon Score: Allies 36, Axis -2
Ok maybe not THAT narrowly won... it sure seemed a lot closer when we were playing it out though. I'll never understand WiFFE scoring!