Imperial Japanese Orbats

Imperial Japanese Orbats

Japanese Infantry Battalion from Graham Evans' collection

Japanese Infantry Battalion from Graham Evans’ collection

Infantry Division (Standard type B)

Army of Manchuria

The Regimental Tank Companies -Proper  Type 97 models this time

The Regimental Tank Companies -Proper Type 97 models this time

Tank Regiment

JApanese Infantry Regimental HQ

Japanese Infantry Regimental HQ

Special (Garrison) Division 

Naval Landing Forces storm ashore through the early morning mists

Naval Landing Forces storm ashore through the early morning mists

Special (Naval) Landing Force 

Independent Brigade

 
Mitsubishi Ki-46 'Dinah'. (1941), [ Strategic Reconnaisance]. IJA

Mitsubishi Ki-46 ‘Dinah’. (1941), [ Strategic Reconnaisance]. IJA

Air Forces and Supporting Troops

For Japan, the war began with the invasion of Manchuria, and a large part of the Army was tied up throughout the war on mainland China. The Japanese perspective divides the Pacific Campaign into the initial invasion, and a long second stage where the Japanese reacted to the Allies.

The war in the Far East lends itself particularly well to the NQM approach, with one player controlling the Japanese and umpiring, and the remaining players taking the part of the Allies. 

Do not be put off, or think that this game can only be played using masses of toys. It works well with smaller numbers of troops too, and lends itself well to using cheap toys or card mock-up models to fill in the gaps in your army’s inventory. I use 15mm due to space constraints. 20mm plastic stuff is cheaper, and 25-28mm stuff looks grander.

Making do is a time-honoured wargames tradition. The Japanese threw troops together as necessity dictated, which means that you can justify almost any combination of troops EXCEPT MASSES OF TANKS. The British 14th Army made effective use of Armour in the Plains of Burma, so the Far East was not entirely a tank-free Zone.

Politics

No-one who wargames in a period should be blind to the politics of the age. Peoples’ political views are, quite rightly, of importance to them. These views are often passionately held and overwhelmingly expressed. For that reason, they should not interfere with a hobby that brings people together socially. It is equally important not to dismiss or belittle someone’s viewpoint or experience just because it does not accord with your own. I believe that we should try to understand the past without being obsessed by it. The world moves on. 

For a long time, the British and Chinese felt, and feel, about the Japanese treatment of Prisoners of War, much the same as the Russians felt about the Germans. This has made the study of, and depiction of the war in Asia much less popular than Western Europe.

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