We wanted to update everyone on the status of I Shall Return. We are deep into the research phase of this very intriguing game and making very good progress toward wrapping things up. At this time the 1941/1942 scenario research covering the Japanese capture of the Philippines is complete and the only thing that remains is to build the actual scenario. This scenario will include optional Allied units delivered by the USS Pensacola convoy as well as early war weapons like the B-17C/D and the A6M2-11. The Japanese will have a lot to do in this scenario and will be under severe time constraints to finish things up so that their army and navy can be released for use elsewhere.
For the September 1944-September 1945 time period, the research for the Axis and Allied air orders of battle as well as the US Army, US Marine Corps and US Navy ground orders of battle has been completed. We are now deep into the Japanese ground order of battle research for this period and expect this to be completed over the next several months. The naval orders of battle for 1944/45 have been started and are approximately 50% complete. What that then leaves is the May, 1942 through September, 1944 Japanese order of battle (which will consist mainly of occupation and anti-partisan ground units) and the Philippine Army, Philippine Constabulary and guerilla forces order of battle. Late war weapons will include the B-29, the B-32 (one squadron equipped with this aircraft during the summer of 1945), Iowa and Yamamoto class battleships and US Navy aircraft carriers equipped for night fighting. Some interesting units that will appear in the game include the IJA 2nd Tank Division, the Alamo Scouts, the Takasago Volunteers and the Chinese Anti-Japanese Guerrilla Force. Depending on where we are counter wise, we may also cover the Love II operations which involved landing an Australian corps consisting of 3 infantry divisions and a reduced tank division in northern Luzon (despite MacArthur’s objections!).
We still need to build a final scenario list but the current thinking is as follows:
- The 1941/42 campaign scenario
- A December, 1941 one turn scenario covering the destruction of the Far East Air Force
- The 1944/45 campaign scenario
- A 1944 scenario covering ground/air operations on Leyte
- A 1945 scenario covering ground/air operations on Luzon
- A 1944 scenario covering the Battle of Leyte Gulf
- A 1945 scenario covering the capture of the Visayas and Mindanao
- A “what-if” scenario covering an assault on Formosa in early 1945
The Formosa scenario is based on a 1944 study conducted by Nimitz’s staff and assumes that Luzon was bypassed in favor of obtaining a strategic bomber base closer to Japan and to influence the ground war in China. We are looking forward to getting this game into your hands as soon as possible!
Dennis and John