Best Strategy Games - Axis & Allies Strategy

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Transport Math

Youíre playing Japan and have 1 usable transport, 3 infantry in Japan, and 27 IPCs. What should you buy?

Well, assuming that itís not round 16 and the US isnít about to invade with a huge army to win the game, this comes down to a simple calculation of transport efficiency.

You want to have one transport for every two infantry, and you have to buy now, knowing what your moves and intentions are this turn, likely responses by the Allies, and what position that will leave you at the beginning of your next turn.

Well, itís easy if you take it incrementally. First you have too many infantry for your existing transports, so you want to go ahead and get one more transport. That leaves you with 19 IPCs. You now donít have enough infantry, so pick up one more. That leaves you with 16. A set [one transport and two infantry] is 14, so that leaves you with 2.

But wait a second. You still have that one infantry on Okinawa and another one on Wake. You almost forgot to include those, and they are easy to pick up, since they are both just one space away from Japan.

That means that you can put back two infantry you had already mentally committed to, so you now have perfect transport/infantry sets and 8 IPCs left over. Go ahead and get one more transport. Itís not perfect optimization, but as close as you can get. Besides, if you continue to have too many transports, you can send one of them on a mission to pick up those useless infantry on those hard-to-get-to islands like the Solomons, Carolina, New Guinea, etc.

The net purchases you should make: 3 transports, 1 infantry.

Barring unforeseen circumstances, youíll start your next turn with four transports and six infantry that can be picked up and moved ashore this turn.

It may sound like a purchasing strategy that is very deterministic and that leaves little room for creativity - thatís because it is. Remember, most Axis & Allies games are not won by creativity, but are slugging matches won by the player with the most patience and biggest stack of infantry surviving at the end of the battle.

This transport/infantry mix should be your purchasing strategy for Japan, the UK, and the US. Russia and Germany have it much simpler Ė just buy infantry.