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Author Topic: Vietnam Revolts opening  (Read 7418 times)

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blitzgordon

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Vietnam Revolts opening
« on: October 10, 2013, 09:37:20 am »
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Hi!
I'm wondering about the Vietnam Revolts Turn 1 HL opening. I've read Rikus' notes at
http://twilightstrategy.com/2011/12/16/vietnam-revolt
but I still feel a bit unsure about it. Have you guys used it? What kinds of starting hands warrants the opening? If used successfully, how do the first couple of ARs turn out?
Basically, how and when and why would you open the game by HL:ing Vietnam Revolts.

Help yourselves help me!

Thanks in advance,
from Blitz
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pietshaq

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2013, 04:49:21 pm »
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My consideration is that Vietnam Revolts opening as a T1HL is generally wrong. USSR is ahead in tit-for-tat coups in the Southern Asia due to VR boost but even this makes the opening favorable for US when US gets to coup back and forth. The key factor is that USSR threats to streamroll US in the Early War. When you coup back and forth for, say, half a turn, you effectively reduce the time of Early War to 2.5 turns... and wait for the Mid War cards to happen.

This is, by the way, why I like to go to Colombia early as US (even in turn 1), and, as USSR, I sometimes delay the first coups not to give US the sensible targets. The latter is true especially if US has 3/0 in Iran at start.

The worst scenario is when your VR HL is responded by US RS/P headline (which throws your SA advantage away) or US CIA headline (which gives initiative into US hands and give them one extra roll).

The main exception is when you don't get CIA headline and combine VR headline with couping Iran using Duck And Cover. If you have Vietnam Revolts, Duck and Cover, and CIA Created, VR headline is probably very strong (even if Purged).
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Chimista

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2013, 05:11:26 am »
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I agree that T1 VR HL is normally not a great idea for the USSR as it provides the US a coupable target and can lead to a string of coups and a waste of time. It's only a really good opening in the situations mentioned by Piestaq (And by Theory, in the strategy blog).
However a deeper, statistical analysis could be interesting and it might turn out that this is a better opening than it seems. Probabily when the USSR has a low ops hand (i.e. no 4ops cards and only on 3 ops) and not holding Decol and Destal (so playing China in T1 is a bad idea). This HL can open "a new front", so even if the Iran coup is weak USSR still has the posibility to take Thailand and both Koreas, evening out Asia.

« Last Edit: October 11, 2013, 05:14:18 am by Chimista »
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blitzgordon

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2013, 06:01:17 am »
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It seems to me, like Pietshaq said, VR is an excellent HL under the following conditions, and very vulnerable is not these exact criteria are met (exaggerated slightly):
USSR holds the following cards:
CIA Created -  horrible HL to be countered with
RS/P - It might be a complete disaster if you're purged
Duck & Cover - for couping

+ you also have to coup well in Iran using D&C, not to mention that you're giving up the last coup of the turn, ie the US counter-coup. The exception could be if
USSR1 - coup Iran using 4ops
US1 - coup Vietnam
USSR2 - counter-coup Vietnam using D&C (turns it into a 4ops)
This still means, however, that the US has the last coup, and might well have a prime target in Iran. If US coups well, you've essentially given up Pakistan and India for Thailand. Right?
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Jack Rudd

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2013, 03:39:44 pm »
+1

RS/P is a horrible headline to be countered with whatever you've headlined. (Edge case for USA: Defectors.)
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Riku Riekkinen

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2013, 03:51:09 pm »
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Yes and CIA headline from US is a sacrifice which gives it quite sure staying in iron triangle. Now on the other hand US has advantage towards Thailand (from Australia). So if US decides to sacrifice CIA (this is rarely seen as a great move on itself) and then goes for Vietnam, he is also deciding to leave Iran area more vulnerable.

I don't agree that USSR's best chance for winning the game is early steamroll. Sometimes US has better hands during early war. Half turn coup counter coups result about 3IPs. USSR can later use its excess with Destal. US doesn't do much with its, if US rolls really high. Also Vietnam kind of helps to early USSR roll overs as it makes Asia scoring bad for US from very beginning.
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DC-Chaos

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2013, 10:03:14 pm »
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I don't think there are any real weaknesses to playing Vietnam Revolts as a turn 1 headline. It gets you into one of the most important areas of the board at the earliest possible point and gives you extra fire power to protect that presence and/or begin a SE Asia take over. The only thing you have to worry about is if the US wipes you out with a lucky coup that leaves no IPs left for you to coup back but there's not much you can do about that and really you're not much worse off than you'd normally be.

I'd be very happy to see the US throw away CIA on their first turn headline but I'm pretty sure that would almost never happen therefore I would never worry about it. If it does, whatever, be happy they got rid of it for you.

Being purged always sucks but (since you have the +1 for SE Asia ops, start with 2 IPs in Vietnam and the China Card in hand) I don't see this as a great cause for concern because you should still be ahead in OP's in the region.

If the US really wants to start a coup war, great, because I'd be very confident of winning it as they will start off at a considerable disadvantage. Since Europe is tough to make ground in and American inclined and the Middle East isn't usually a high priority the Early war usually boils down to a fight for Asia. If you can start this fight with access to a region normally unavailable to you and with extra OP's to fight there then I say go for it. Also I totally agree with Rikus point about any excess influence left over from big USSR coups can be spread around with Destal where as for the US it's just dead weight. Another reason to be happy when the coup war starts.

If you can secure Afghanistan, Thailand, Vietnam and South Korea  in the first turn with this advantage then you'll be looking very healthy in the far east and force the US into risky and wasteful plays to try and stop you scoring.

Vietnam revolts is one of those cards that you want to make sure you play as if the opponents gets it it'll end up being useless. That being said I'm not sure how high it would be in the headliner priority list. I'm sure with a better hand there might be some more powerful openings in the first turn.
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blitzgordon

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2013, 06:54:40 am »
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This is all very interesting! And, perhaps worthy of a new thread altogether.
I never imagined people valued CIA Created so highly Mid game. I mean, sure, it's a bad card for USSR to be stuck with, but to me a Turn 1 headline of CIA followed by a move into Afghanistan is just... I don't know, such a game changer.
I agree that on consecutive turns in the Earl War, HLing it does not reap such obvious benefits.

So just to be clear, in the choice between A) a Turn 1 HL of CIA Created, and
 B) the possibility of it showing up in Reds' hand Mid War,
most seasoned players choose B?
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budzo

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2013, 08:04:31 am »
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From my experience:

Its very good but u have to combine it with duck and cover coup Iran ar1.

If not like someone said it stops ur journey in asia and if bad luck it gives vietnam to usa wchich is horrible. With d&c its great no disadvantages
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DC-Chaos

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2013, 07:49:28 am »
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The reason people won't play CIA early is that you want the USSR to draw it as it will be a very problematic suicide card for them to have to deal with. It could win you the game. The only time you should play CIA for it's event would be a turn 7 headline as by then it has no chance to get back into the deck. I'm pretty sure most people would agree.
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pietshaq

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2013, 08:11:35 am »
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The reason people won't play CIA early is that you want the USSR to draw it as it will be a very problematic suicide card for them to have to deal with. It could win you the game. The only time you should play CIA for it's event would be a turn 7 headline as by then it has no chance to get back into the deck. I'm pretty sure most people would agree.

I agree if you have the initiative but CIA played as a headline, even earlier, can be a pretty good defensive card. By giving US and Early War battleground coup it's a 3VPs swing (USSR will likely lose 1VP instead of US losing 2VPs unless saved by war card) and combined with opponent's hand knowledge it may save you from being streamrolled. It's especially true when you have a really poor hand in turn 3 and have to see which regions to defend against the second scoring since you can't afford defending everywhere. I also headline CIA as US in turn 1 if my hand is a problematic one (usually below 12 Ops and/or containing two or three scoring cards).
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Chimista

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2013, 09:06:24 am »
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If you have 2 or 3 scoring cards you better hl one!
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budzo

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2013, 09:49:41 am »
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The reason people won't play CIA early is that you want the USSR to draw it as it will be a very problematic suicide card for them to have to deal with. It could win you the game. The only time you should play CIA for it's event would be a turn 7 headline as by then it has no chance to get back into the deck. I'm pretty sure most people would agree.

What is better:

A chance for USSR player to draw cia later and not have brezhniev (wchich allows to space CIA) end even then it gives u ar1 coup but if played good ar7 previous turn ussr player will not coup anyways?

or

Headlining cia and knowing all ussr cards in turn 1 wchich is the most important turn and being able to play into afghanistan or iraq (if for example sues crisis was headlined by ussr) and having a major adv while playing for iran/pakistan/india ?
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Chimista

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #13 on: October 22, 2013, 11:04:32 am »
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I don't think CIA in T1 is such a great advantage. If I have to HL CIA I'd rather do it T3 or after, so I can do a meaningful coup in Africa.

1ip in Afghanistan in T1 is not such a threat to the USSR, not since the standard is +2ip for USA, making harder for the opening Iran coup to succeed.
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budzo

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2013, 05:26:05 pm »
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well i personally play wo +2 iran
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Chimista

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2013, 04:25:54 am »
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well i personally play wo +2 iran

US +2 is standard TSL rules now, so I guess we should go with the flow, or else we could discuss Chaturanga strategy :P
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DC-Chaos

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2013, 09:51:47 am »
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Sorry to keep discussing off topic but...

If the US played 1 IP into Afghanistan I'd happily coup there and with a good roll I could do major damage to the US chances in that region and set up a nice realignment modifier for Iran. I don't see the great advantage in playing 1 IP into Iraq compared with keeping CIA in the game. You can still freely play it for 1 op in your turn which isn't a lot but you won't suffer any nasty enemy events from it. Besides negating the obvious suicide threat in the mid war you are also removing the threat of winning the game with the early war nuclear war combo of T3 Five Year Plan and CIA. Being able to see your opponents hand in turn 1 or at any stage in the early war isn't very advantageous as you should have a pretty good idea of what they might have and which scoring regions to worry about. There's just not that many cards in the deck and you should be worried about all of them anyway.

To sum up my general opinion of a T1 HL CIA is that it is an ok play but keeping it in the deck is almost always better.

A T1 HL Vietnam revolts for the USSR however? I can see no drawbacks to that play
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budzo

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #17 on: November 04, 2013, 05:00:31 pm »
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well... if u play wo +2 iran the case is that u can play afghanistan and then ussr player has to think twice before couping iran because for example he doesnt succed or lets say remove usa inf and not place his he can be in bad shape cause usa can just lower defcon to 3 by couping iraq and take pakistan. Id say it depends of many factors beacuse its dangerous to lower defcon to 3 beacuse of the danger of decol/destal/vietnam, but on the other hand if u played cia u have the knowledge about his hand.

U can put 1 inf in iraq wchich in case of sues crisis headline gives u presence in me after succesful iran coup.

I will soon play in polish nationals and the rules are taken from the rulerbook, so u can have additional points but u may not have it.
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Bad Apple

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2014, 09:48:09 am »
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VR is an awsome headline in my opinion, although it doesn't seem that at first glance. The USSR headlines VR, then play a 3  ops card to place 2 in thailand and 1 in afghanistan. Alternatively, if the USSR has a 4 op card other than China, then 3 thailand, 1 afghanstan . Yes, you'd be giving up the +1 bonus but it's worth it.
Now the US has several options, all of them bad:

1. Coup thailand - USSR can coup back at +1 or +2 (with china). Even if US "succeeds" in emptying Thailand that is actually the worst possible outcome because then USSR will coup iran and Asia is basically won. (US will never get to thailand on time).

2. Us can play into Pakistan (play into afghanistan is now basically pointless because the US will need 3 to control it, so they cant take both at once) - USSR can coup Pakistan with the china card, or if they have another 4 ops card coup with it instead. Us can coup back, but unless the outcome is at least 3 US inf, USSR can flip pakistan back with the china card (because of the 1 inf in afghanistan).

3. All other plays will allow USSR to take Pakistan. Again if US coups pakistan, USSR can coup back at +1 with china. Barring Indo-Pakistan war there is virtually no chance for US of easily gaining it back. If USSR takes both Pakistan and Afghanistan in 1 move (3 ops) then they may mitigate even that risk.

While of course there is allways a small chance that US ends up with Pakistan and India due to bad rolls by the reds, USSR will CERTAINLY hold Thailnad. Plus the moment they feel the western front is lost they can easily play into S/E Asia with the +1 VR ops. At worst Asia will be contested, and USSR will hold the majority of the S/E asian countries which are traditionally controlled by the US. 
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lukiluk

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Re: Vietnam Revolts opening
« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2014, 06:15:04 pm »
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In this scenario what USA can do is coup Thailand and after a Soviet successful counter-coup put 3 points into Pakistan. Short of a lucky I-P War USA ends up with 3 or 4 battlegrounds in Asia.
In my opinion, what the Soviets need to do is make US Thailand coup more likely to end with no US influence in Thailand, which requires putting 3 or even 4 points there - but which costs 1 OP less due to the Vietnam event. You only have the event for this one turn, make it count. If US responds with taking Afghanistan, no problem, Asia can wait. Just put 2 IP in South Korea, in the next round 1 in Afghanistan (yes, paying extra) and focus on other regions. Possibly taking Malaysia on the way, to utilize the bonus.
As a Soviet, if only I have Defectors in my hand, I'm quite happy to play this opening.
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