Allies: Jim Kramer Jr. (Bid: 1.5 POC)
Axis: Gregory Hultgren
Report by Gregory Hultgren
Kramer opened the game with the Barents on T2 strategy giving the Axis an two Barents points in exchange for additional help from the King George V, Prince of Wales and Formidable the next turn. Sadly, Turn 2 did not work out well for the Allies. The German navy with its bright shiny new Bismarck came out to challenge Allies first venture into the Barents. The Axis lost the Gneisenau, Scharnhorst and the Graf Spee, but the Allies lost far more. The Allies lost nine ships, including four battlewagons, four cruisers and the Ark Royal and when the dust settled, the Axis still held the Barents. While this result only increased the German POC to Axis +4 the Turn 2, the attrition of ships crippled the Allies for the rest of the game.
On T3, significantly weakened, the Allies played duck and cover leaving the Barents open again, but fortunately both Ruskies showed up to fight in the Baltic. Leaving two 225s to hold the Barents, the remaining German navy zeroed in on the Russians and blew them both out of the water. Even so, many a German mother wept who had a son on the Prinz Eugen as it went down in the fight. So at the end of T3, the Axis held the Med, Baltic and Barents again bouncing the POC to Axis +7 as subs stole an Allied point in the South Atlantic as well.
T4 the same result occurred without any significant fighting increasing the POC to Axis +10. Then on T5, the Allies returned to the Barents as they tried to push their first convoy through to Russia. The Convoy was sunk by a freakish hit by Axis LBA, but then the Allied Ships went to work, sinking four smaller Axis ships. Sadly, again for the Allies, the Axis still held the Barents, Baltic and Med at the end of the turn. POC remained at Axis +10.
On T6, the Allies were able to get their second convoy through reducing the POC to Axis +7 as the crossing was only opposed by Axis LBA, but Nazi subs had popped open the North Sea, leaving the entire board open for T7. Kramer’s Allies decided to go for the Med while pushing their 3rd convoy through the Barents. The convoy got through without opposition as Axis LBA was diverted to help in the Med, but the Allies failed to win the Med or the South Atlantic where German Subs, the Bismarck, Tirpitz and three Italian Cruisers claimed that area for the Reich. With the Axis remaining at Axis +7 (notwithstanding the third convoy’s arrival), Kramer’s Allies understandably called it quits. The end result was Axis +8.5 after application of the bid.
There is one other significant thing to note about the game. In rolling for Americans on T7 Jim rolled a Yahtzee of sixes bringing the entire remaining five Americans into play. Greg was thankful that this roll did not occur during any ship-to-ship combat. (I am sure Jim was thankful they weren't speed rolls!)
FINAL GAME RESULT: Allied victory - concession near the start of Turn 5 (Allied lead of 6.0 POC after the bid)