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Japan vs. the World

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iHaving failed to defeat the most populous nation on earth, Japan declared war on the world’s largest empire and the world’s richest nation in 1941. They also attacked the Dutch. Things went about as well as you would expect: Japan lost its colonies and had to accept occupation by the Americans. In this game, you play Japan, and you win by avoiding total defeat. If you can keep the Soviets out of Manchuria, the Americans out of the home islands, and the Emperor on his throne, then you will have pulled off a major victory.

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japan vs the world

africacrossgames responds:

Glad you liked it!

Thanks for the rating. Not many strategy games on modern Japanese history out there.

There are some crucial tips that weren't mentioned in the games:
1. If you capture "Enemy supply source" of a faction, that faction's attack card won't do anything anymore and essentially becomes a waste of the enemy's turn. (ie. If I captured India then all "Chindits" in the future can be "pass" without any cost or any ground lost.)

2. Having a 0 support tile not only means the tile itself becomes useless, EVERY tile that needs the said tile to connect Tokyo will also become useless, no matter their support. Once I almost ruined my total victory by letting Okinawa drop to 0 and temporarily lost half of my empire.

As a fan of military history, I find this game quite informative and interesting. I managed to win total victory on my first try. Just as others had mentioned it's quite dependent on luck. But as long as the enemy didn't use "Island-hop" a lot in early games and if you know how to conserve military & resources until the time is right for offensive, you'll be fine most of the time.

I'm fine without music because I understand not everyone can commission a good music composer, especially for a short game like this. Although adding good music if possible definitely will be a big plus.

Also, if it's not too controversial, perhaps you can use a similar structure to make "Germany vs the World"? Their late-war situation is quite similar so I think it could be interesting.

Edit: To prevent the game from being too dependent on luck, I've come up with some ideas:
1. Add one or two more tiles to the pacific (like Midway island or Marshall island) to reduce the impact if you get unlucky and got too many "island-hopping" early on.
2. Make it impossible for the enemy to invade (T) tile if support is high enough (let's say 5+) to represent the region is too fortified to invade. So now you have an option to focus on turtling around Tokyo to al least prevent total defeat.
3. Add (T) and support level to Mariana island as well. (Just look at Battle of Saipan) This will make "Island fortification" more useful since now you could raise support on Mariana to prevent "Island hopping" spam from taking your crucial airfields. But it'll be harder than Okinawa since it can't be raised with "Kamikazes".
4. To balance things out, change the cost of "Island fortification" to 2 Army so you'll have to choose whether you spend Army on expanding or turtling.
5. Add a new card "Colonial draft", costs 4 food, gets 2 Army per (C). Basically the Army version of "Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere".

Well, it's not a bad game, but I feel there's a lot of room for improvement. Besides the obvious (and harming) fact that the graphics are unappealing and that there's no real explanation for the lack of sound or music, I feel that the game gives you little chance to recover within each game, so you depend heavily on luck. I think that having discarding cards consume a turn is an added difficulty, but combining it with the impossibility of recovering from certain events (guerrillas, farmers' uprising, etc.) is too much. There should be a way to recover from that, because, if not, you control the territories, you gain less resources (which are always scarce) and it's an uphill battle that you're doomed to lose.

I won, conquering the three boxes I was supposed to, but after some tries and because I had a lucky roll, overall.

africacrossgames responds:

Hi! Wow. Thanks for the really detailed feedback. Honestly, this is a really great review from my perspective. I was trying to create a game that illustrated the near hopelessness of Japan's situation in WWII. Thanks for playing.

Nice! This one really requires to keep half a dozen things in sight, balancing them and developing a handful of strategies to balance out bad luck and still succeed.
But taking San Francisco finally feels very rewarding!

Credits & Info

3.12 / 5.00

Nov 22, 2020
10:25 AM EST