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DC-Chaos

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USA Turn1 AR1
« on: April 24, 2013, 09:00:12 am »
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Hey,

The USSR generally accepted first move of the game is to coup Iran and coup it hard. Tactically there is almost never any reason to deviate from this which is a great comfort and advantage for all USSR players in knowing what they should do to open the game up.

Although it's very dependant on what headlines were played on what's in your hand, I'm wondering what people think are the best plays a US player can do in response, especially if the Iran coup was a good one (ie rolled 4+ with 4op's making couping back not a good option). Given that buying influence at this stage is very important and having the last coup of the turn is better than the second last, the 2 best options I can see are

-Buy influence in Malaysia and take control of Thailand. this counters your recently cut off access to Asia and can start controlled the SE countries which will net points in the Mid War and help to stop domination by superior country count
-Buy influence in Lebanon, Egypt and Libya to protect Israel and contest the Middle East

You would ideally be using a 4 OPs card so you could do one plan with 1 influence left over to grab a country from the other plan (eg contest middle east and put 1 in Malaysia). With the former if he hits Thailand with his second coup he can use the China card making couping it back near impossible, really cripple your chances in Asia and leave you with no real targets for your own coup. Therefore I tend to prefer the latter as it means the USSR must choose which one of your new influenced battlegrounds to coup and when he does you can hopefully effectively coup it back with the last coup of the turn. After which you can probably make a much safer play into Thailand. Of course if you have one of the 3 scoring cards then this will affect your decision and if you have Europe then a third option would be to grab France and put 1 influence in Malaysia or Lebanon.

To conclude, and I'm a pretty new player, as long as you don't have Europe or Asia scoring I think that your best possible play would be

"US Turn1 AR1 - 4 OP's to Buy Influence -1 Malaysia/1 Lebanon/1 Egypt/1 Libya"

Your thoughts are much appreciated
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pietshaq

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2013, 09:50:57 am »
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First of all, you can't buy influence in Libya because you have no influence in Libya nor in any country adjacent to Libya before starting placing influence.

Malaysia at DEFCON=4 is also not a very good option.

On AR1 I like playing into Lebanon and Jordan or Egypt to protect against Arab-Israeli War, and this is done best with an exactly 3 Ops card. I won't wait till the end of turn just to have the last coup because I don't want to end up at DEFCON 4 with no Mil-Ops. Moreover, I want to lower DEFCON ASAP to make USSR's player's life harder due to CIA Created (if Fidel is triggered or USSR has decol/destal).

Malaysia is to be taken at DEFCON 3 or lower. Apart from that, the main priority for the USA's first turn is taking 2-stability Mediterranean countries to make USSR's Europe domination harder. When DEFCON gets to 2, Algieria is always a good option (so you need to have any influence in France first). One IP from the AR6 should usually go to Colombia if DEFCON is at 2. One IP, when there are no better places for it, can go to Canada to threaten NORAD after Marshall Plan. All of the above are at least enough compared to your possibilities throughout one Early War turn. You only have 6 rounds, only about 12-13 Ops (not containing headline), statistically half of Scoring Card that you have to play, and most of the time Early War is about USSR creating threats and USA responding directly to them without a significant margin for own play.
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DC-Chaos

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2013, 12:38:32 pm »
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First of all, you can't buy influence in Libya because you have no influence in Libya nor in any country adjacent to Libya before starting placing influence.

OH! this I didn't know. Seems me and my friends have been playing incorrectly. As I said we are new players :(

Well this calls for a serious rethink then. I get your point about not taking Malaysia while at DEFCON 4, a powerful coup there from the USSR could do serious harm to your mission in SE Asia especially with Iran already blocked off.

Turn1 AR1 - Egypt 2/Lebanon 1 (+ Greece 1 if you have 4 OP's)

...sounds like a pretty solid opener with plans in the next few ARs to move into Malaysia/Libya and coup somewhere in the Middle East or Asia depending on what the Russians have been up to and where DEFCON is

If you do take the second battleground coup of the turn what would your likely target be though? It seems Iran is the only thing viable and if your opponents coup roll was high then even this seems pointless to attempt, unless of course you really are only doing it for Mil-Ops and Defcon. Perhaps waiting for the USSR to coup 2nd is the best option as you can retaliate if he takes Egypt or Libya from you?
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SnowFire

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2013, 02:54:26 pm »
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theory's article on the US's goals on Turn 1 basically all apply to US AR1, too:

http://twilightstrategy.com/2011/12/12/general-strategy-turn-1/

So yeah.  Get in the Middle East from Israel if you got coup'd out of Iran, maybe grab Greece if you have time, and at some point make a play for Thailand via Malaysia.

You CAN go to Malaysia at DEFCON 4, you just better stick 2 ops in and be ready to fight (and this is in fact very flavorful and historically accurate - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malayan_Emergency ).  I'd usually take Egypt first by default, but if DEFCON is still 4 on AR3 or so, it might be time to just smash in.  You should have some 3 or 4 ops cards ready though in case the USSR decides to do a coup war over Malaysia, since you are in horrible shape if you just let the USSR win said coup war.  The other problem is that the Soviets have China guaranteed on turn 1 - so even if they let you into Malaysia, it's entirely possible to then place 3 ops into Thailand, and be coup'd back by a 5ops China card that you can't counter-coup.  Risky.  But totally reasonable.  If the USSR seems to have a weak hand and you have a strong one - perhaps because you played Purge, or perhaps because the Soviets did the Iran coup with China already and have since played underwhelming cards - by all means, bulldoze into SE Asia at DEFCON 4 on turn 1, better than stalling and letting the USSR maybe get a better hand on turn 2 with Vietnam Revolts / Decolonization/ De-stalinization to steal Thailand from you.
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pietshaq

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2013, 03:09:47 pm »
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OH! this I didn't know. Seems me and my friends have been playing incorrectly. As I said we are new players :(

So did I in my very first game, relax :) Just keep in mind that changing the rule into one that allows putting IPs if you just have adjacency at any moment, including part of an action round, the game tends to be in favor for the USA. Drop DEFCON to 2 and you can make a route: Angola, Zaire, Cameroon, Nigeria in one action round.

If you do take the second battleground coup of the turn what would your likely target be though? It seems Iran is the only thing viable and if your opponents coup roll was high then even this seems pointless to attempt, unless of course you really are only doing it for Mil-Ops and Defcon. Perhaps waiting for the USSR to coup 2nd is the best option as you can retaliate if he takes Egypt or Libya from you?

You need Mil-Ops but you don't necessarily need to drop DEFCON. I sometimes coup Syria. First: it prevents USSR from scoring Middle East against no presence (although I've probably taken Lebanon). Second: it provides me Mil-Ops but does not drop DEFCON so usually I use less than 4 Mil-Ops and USSR has dilemma: re-coup (and give me re-coup after which I have enough Mil-Ops) or leave alone. Last but not least: it grabs USSR adjacency to Turkey, a considerable target for USSR-played Marshall Plan.
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Riku Riekkinen

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2013, 03:15:44 pm »
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2 to Egypt
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discomute

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2013, 12:23:07 am »
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How many ops need to be in Iran before it accepted the USA will not counter-coup? 2 or 3?
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sspiker

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2013, 10:34:34 am »
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Depends entirely on what cards the US has. Even at 3 IPs, a 4-ops coup has a 67% chance of wiping out all USSR influence, a 50% chance of adding their own, and a 33% chance of control. Those are the same odds for a 3-ops coup with 2 IPs. All other things being pretty standard, I would say many USA players would take those odds.

If you have 3 IPs and the USA has no 4-ops left, then they'll probably pass.
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Tbody

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Re: USA Turn1 AR1
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2013, 02:18:13 pm »
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Your hand will really determine what threats you can make on US AR1.  Here is what I normally consider:

1 in Lebanon/2 in Jordan
1 in Lebanon/2 in Egypt (if I have Nasser)
1 in Costa Rica (guard against Panama coup)
Coup against Iraq (ops heavy hand and 3 beers in me) <- not advised

*I honestly like to play defense HEAVILY at the beginning of the game, which means saving my high ops cards for the end of the turn.  Identify their scoring threats first before committing heavily, and after those threats are passed, wait until AR6 to either make a AR6 play or to throw heavy influence into a region that hasn't been scored to neutralize scoring threats in the next turn.


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