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Russia Strategy for Axis & Allies 3rd Edition

Russia Turn One

The more things change, the more they stay the same: buy 8 infantry.

Attack Belorussia with 2 planes and 3 infantry

Attack Western Russia with everything else that can reach, except for 3 infantry in Caucuses.

Move 3 infantry in Caucuses and 2 infantry in Kazakh into Persia

Move Novosibirsk infantry to Kazakh, Evenki and Yakut to Novosibirsk, Buryatia and SFE to Yakut.

Land fighters back in Russia.

Build 4 infantry in Caucuses and 4 infantry in Russia.

Russia Overall Strategy

Keys to winning:

1. Stay alive

2. Minimize casualties

3. Reinforce Sinkiang and India

4. Maximize income

Caught on the Eurasian landmass between both Axis players, Russia’s #1 priority is to simply stay alive, which may be easier said than done.

Both Axis players would love to trade infantry for infantry with Russia, because they have such an economic edge compared to Russia individually. Russia wants to minimize their casualties and only fight smart battles that are worth the cost and can’t afford to let the Axis bleed them dry.

That said, some of the best uses for Russia’s troops are to contribute to defensive positions in India or Sinkiang, where the Western Allied troops can provide the first line of defense, and Russia doesn’t actually risk losing any units. Since Japan can produce and field more troops in Asia than a factory in Sinkiang and India could produce, Russia’s contributions become the “x” factor. Russia must constantly monitor the pipeline of reinforcements to make sure they are sending an appropriate amount of infantry to defend those territories, which results in a constant awareness of how many units Japan could conceivably field against either territory two turns in advance. It can be difficult to maintain the mental discipline to calculate each turn what Japan could field two turns later against India, but it must be done to efficiently defend against the Japanese threat.

Just as every infantry means more to Russia than it does any other player, so to does every IPC. Russia, more than any other player, must maximize their income coming in each turn in order to remain viable. This involves fighting constant back and forth battles with both Germany and Japan to retake territories such as Ukraine, Belorussia, Karelia, and Yakut for starters.

With the added territories as a buffer zone between Germany and Russia, Russia now has much more time for advance warning if Germany is moving up their main army. That breather space must be taken advantage of by sending Russian troops east to reinforce Western Allied holdouts like India and Sinkiang. Russia must maintain an aggressive stance against Japan to keep them from growing like a cancer that threatens to consume all of Asia.

Just as there is a gap between the IPCs Germany would need to take Russia and what it takes to defend Germany, which allows Germany to spend IPCs on technology or Africa, so to there is a gap between what Russia would need to take Germany and what it takes to defend Russia. Unlike Germany, Russia should spend those IPCs on units to fight Japan rather than technology.

Losing Buryatia and Soviet Far East should not concern the Russian player. The eastern territories are only worth half of what they once were and are vulnerable to battleship bombards. The true Russian line of defense should be considered extending from Yakut, through Sinkiang, and into India. A game that goes completely for the Russian player will see those three territories never fall into Japanese hands.

It’s critical for Russia to defend territories wisely. Territories that could be lost with the result of equal casualties for both sides should NOT be defended at all. Territories that might be lost with greater casualties for the Axis should be defended heavily. For instance, if Germany can attack Caucuses and probably take it (by using air support), but at a heavy cost to tanks and planes, then Russia should defend it heavily. If Germany could attack Caucuses and the net result is each side would lose equal numbers of infantry, then Russia should abandon it. The key is to not abandon territories needlessly, and not defend territories needlessly. Embedded in this decision is the position that the Axis player would be in after taking the territory. If defending Caucuses strongly with infantry means that the Germans could still take it, but would then only be defending with tanks that could be easily counterattacked – Russia should definitely defend Caucuses heavily. The calculation of expected losses for both sides should also take into account the subsequent counterattack and what might likely happen in that situation.