The Let's Play Archive

Pacific General

by Kangra

Part 7: Southeast China: September 11, 1939

We became bogged down in China this summer, and just as the situation seemed to be improving, we embroiled ourselves in a war with the Europeans. Although we can only hope that they'll be too distracted by their own concerns at home to care about our campaign out here.

The plan is to strike as quickly as possible (once we take Hengyang) westward with the main force. The rest of our troops will form a defensive line to fend off any attackers at Canton, and if necessary fight to guard the flank of the advancing troops. With luck we can at least control the bulk of China before the end of the year.

Axis Turn 20: September 11, 1939
Night, Fair (Dry)

We don't want to attack on this turn, but instead set up for a serious assault on Hengyang.

Skirmishing continues in the hillsides.

Allied (China) Turn 20: September 11, 1939
Night, Fair (Dry)

The only activity from the Chinese is to shell our infantry near Hengyang.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 20 : September 11, 1939
Night, Fair (Dry)

French warships spot the light cruiser Katori in the dim moonlight, but are unable to land any hits.

Chiu-Chang is secured for the British forces as they drive back the Engineers.

Axis Turn 21: September 18, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Days of air raids and a series of bombardments from Cherry Blossoms Float causes Hengyang to surrender with hardly a fight.

After a whole summer of fighting, one of the key objectives is finally in our hands. The real question is whether we have any hope of taking any more territory before the year is out.

The Nagato takes up a position to guard our fleet. We will not sink any more of the enemy ships unless they seriously threaten us.

I also learned an important lesson about night turns -- the increased fuel consumption also applies to planes (meaning that any with low fuel will not make it safely to an airbase if they are moved at night). The 13th is lost.

Allied (China) Turn 21: September 18, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Kweilin wakes up to our advancing army and probes the lines. Casualties are minimal on either side.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 21 : September 18, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The Katori takes a few more hits. We may need to take action now.

Axis Turn 22: September 25, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Our parachute troops (the Teishin Shudan) seized control of an airfield near Liping, and hit Kweilin from an unexpected side.

As the core rolls forward, it becomes critical that we pacify the Chinese forces in the hills; they'll be awfully close to what's about to be our rear area.

The Nagato leaves the La Galissonniere crippled as our ships makes it out of there safely.

Allied (China) Turn 22: September 25, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

No action

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 22 : September 25, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The Europeans are far more active in this region now, oddly enough. But their attacks are only hurting them the more. We have not made any sort of offensive combat (although the Japonies captured an undefended Hong Kong airfield as a distraction), and we're still winning easily.

But there are now French troops on the way northward.

Axis Turn 23: October 2, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

With no enemy armor to oppose them, our tanks are unbeatable.

Although speak of the devil... with luck, we can get control of enough of China that the Europeans will finally leave us alone.

Allied (China) Turn 23: October 2, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Much as we feared, the Chinese are trying to halt our advance by raiding us in the weak rear so that we simply can't risk pushing our forces forward.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 23 : October 2, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Another bunch of Allied soldiers bash their heads against Canton ineffectually.

Axis Turn 24: October 9, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

While we are running short of airbases to resupply at, air power is ensuring that the advance can come down the road at lightning speed. Liuchewhsien falls easily.

We're also managing to gain control of the dwindling Chinese troops in the hills.

The only chance we have to salvage our reputation from this debacle is to somehow finish this off in style, and we take some risks by letting the transports roll out in front of the scout units.

Score right now is us leading 757 - 437, but this is still a Defeat.

Allied (China) Turn 24: October 9, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)


Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 24: October 9, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The Portuguese simply do not learn. Perhaps they think they can bleed our supplies?

Axis Turn 25: October 16, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

We're clearing out any Chinese forces. The European-backed forces will be halted at the river.

The cities ahead of us are entirely empty; if things continue like this we'll be able to move forward and have a chance to secure the majority of China on schedule, if just barely.

Allied (China) Turn 25: October 16, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

A half-hearted attack is made out of the hills near Guigang. Elsewhere along the front, it is quiet.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 25: October 16, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The French seem unperturbed by the pastings they've been given by our capital ships, and a second cruiser makes so bold as to go after the Kaga.

Axis Turn 26: October 23, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The scout tanks sweep in to hit the Chinese rocket units, and Bombing raids reduce them some more. It should be possible to capture Kweiyang before the end of the month.

Kwangnan looks to be a bit tougher; they have anti-air guns set up to keep our planes from hitting them quite so hard, and there are more troops along the road to defend it.

Combat at Canton is dying down. The foreign powers have worn themselves out, and with the current situation in Europe, it's unlikely that they'll be interested in sending more troops to the other side of the world.

Allied (China) Turn 26: October 23, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Thanks to our first attack, the rockets prove unable to drive back the Type 92 from Kweiyang.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 26: October 23, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Canton is quiet, but the French seem to be spoiling for a fight now. They've sent guns and infantry northward, and finally engage us.

Axis Turn 27: October 30, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Kweiyang puts up a tough fight, and repels the attack of the HW infantry.

Then the Type 92 proves to be too much for them to handle, and they pull out of the city.

We have reached Kwangnan; rather than hit the city with our relatively weak tanks, we try to get rid of the air defenses, as they form an easier target. But the days are getting shorter and this campaign cannot be sustained for very much longer.

Perhaps we were mistaken about the determination of the Europeans. Yet they cannot keep up the flow of troops for much longer either. We are barricading their ports now.

Allied (China) Turn 27: October 30, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The Anti-Air guns at Kwangnan actually prove to be fairly ineffective. Our planes had little to fear.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 27: October 30, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

The French continue to push northward, although they don't seem to have a sizable force here.

The other foreign troops don't make much of an effort elsewhere.

Axis Turn 28: November 6, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

We do as much as we can with the bombers and artillery, but the defenses of Kwangnan are quite strong.

In a desperate final battle, the Engineers finally emerge victorious.

Growing restless, Hirohito's Hieneys make some strafing runs against the French ground troops.

The key cities of southern China are ours, but we do need to ensure that the foreign powers aren't going to keep pressing the attack.

Allied (China) Turn 28: November 6, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

China is out of the fight.

Allied (Hong Kong) Turn 28: November 6, 1939
Day, Fair (Dry)

Combat continues around Liuchewhsien. This is about the last of the fighting, as they have nothing more behind it. After a few days, a ceasefire is negotiated with the European powers, and they all stand down around Canton, and move back south of the Pearl River.

A few more potshots are taken by the French against the Kaga before the news of the ceasefire reaches them, or so they claim.

The question that remains, however, is this: Have we pleased the emperor?

Just barely, the answer is a yes. China is done for, and we might end up better off with a chance to build up the military for another year before engaging the foreign powers again.

Later reconnaissance shows that the French really only had a few guns rolling northward. The Chinese had almost nothing remaining of their army.

Victory Level: 1106 - 137
Ending Prestige: 194 (Victory Award +600)

That really was by the skin of our teeth. I wasn't intending for that to work, and I really did forget that you're actually expected to take the other Allied objectives. In fact I thought it was an automatic loss for getting them involved!


Type 92 'Heavy Armored Car'
PG Name: Type 92 Type: Recon
Effective Date: 7/36
Value:9 Cost:108 Spot:3 Move:7 MM:All-Terrain Trans:Naval Fuel: 40
Init:7 SA:4 HA:5 AA:0 NA:0 GD:7 AD:2 CD:2 TT:Hard Ammo:4

Although the official designation of this was as an armored car, it was actually just a light tank. The name was used because this tank was used by the Cavalry and intended for reconnaissance. Early models were armed with two light machine guns, one in the hull and one in the turret; eventually a heavier 13.5mm hull-mounted machine gun was used. This 'car' did see some action in the early 1930s in China, but suffered from manufacturing problems and never saw widespread adoption.

In-game analysis: This is a pretty decent vehicle, all told. Ammunition and fuel capacity could stand to be higher, but the high move rate is a definite plus and the ATV movement type is nice to have. Especially valuable for combat is the high initiative, making this a very capable light tank in all but name, much like in real life. Indeed, those attack values (which seem a bit high given it's real-life armament) make it superior to contemporaneous actual 'tanks' for fighting enemy armor.

Since the in-game difference between recon and tanks is minimal (tanks get an initiative bonus against AT), the biggest downside of adding this to the core is [spoilers] that there are no models to upgrade to. Still, it may be worth keeping one around, because with some time to gain experience it's arguably the best light tank on the Japanese roster.

Mitsubishi A5M4 [Type 96] (Claude)
PG Name: A5M Claude Type:Fighter
Effective Date: 7/36
Value:12 Cost:144 Spot:3 Move:9 MM:Air Trans:Naval Fuel: 76
Init:6 SA:2 HA:1 AA:6 NA:0 DA:0 GD:6 AD:6 Ammo:6

As the new era of carrier warfare dawned, it became apparent that the Navy needed a carrier-launched fighter that could escort the carrier-launched bombers to the target. In the 1930s, the A5M was the latest design, and proved to be quite a capable aircraft in China. It was soon to be superseded by a far more famous airplane, however. Many of these that were still around by the end of the war were converted for use as kamikaze aircraft.

In-game analysis: Coming in at the same price, this is a slightly better fighter than the Nate. It has a greater fuel capacity, higher initiative, and only gives up a little speed and ammunition. It's really not a bad fighter for how cheap it is (makes for a great way to train up a unit), but beyond the early stages of the war there are likely to be more and more enemies that it may have real trouble getting past.