A&A 2004 A.H. Revised edition

Axis & Allies Revised by Avalon Hill. Released in 2004.
Axis & Allies is a classic game of war, economics, and global strategy. Victory goes not only to the team that conquers its opponents on the field of battle, but also to the individual player who seizes the most enemy territory.
Larry
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Post by Larry » Wed Feb 16, 2005 12:19 pm

Griffey -Excellent presentation of your out-of-the-box thinking on the subject(s). I’m not focused in these areas at the moment. I will file these two post under artillery and blitzkrieg. You have been doing some serious thinking here. Thanks a lot. At the moment I’m comfortable with artillery supplementing infantry (pairing-up) but your proposal is very dynamic and deserves some consideration and testing. What has been you experience using artillery the way you describe above (attrition enemy infantry)? By the way… Welcome to the site.

Griffey
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Artillery attrition varinat

Post by Griffey » Fri Feb 18, 2005 9:46 am

Dear Larry,

A friend and I playtested my artillery attrition variant on my home-made more "realistic" map. He was the Axis, I the Allies. I adopted a "Germany first" strategy, he a "Russia first" strategy. However, he, as Japan, quickly realized that Siberian defenses were too tough and Siberia not valuable enough, and so he switched to a southerm strategy against the British & Dutch colonies. His reasoning and choices followed Japan's historical reasoning in these respects.

We used different production rules, in which the production by one power of only one type of unit was discouraged by increasing the unit cost of each successive build, like this:

Fort: attack 0, defend 2, move 0, cost 1,2,3 . . .
Infantry: attack 1, defend 2, move 1, cost 1,2,3 . . .
Artillery: attrition @ 1, move 1, cost 6, 8, 10 . . .
Tank: attack 3, defend 3, move 2, cost 4,6,8 . . .
Fighter: attack 3, defend 4, move 4, cost 8, 10, 12 . . .
Bomber: attack 4, defend 2, move 6, cost 12, 15, 18 . . .
2-hit Battleship: attack 3, defend 3, move 2, cost 16, 24 . . .
Carrier: attack 3, defend 3, move 2, cost 12, 15, 18 . . .
Destroyer: attack 2, defend 3, move 2, cost 8, 10, 12 . . .
Sub: attack 2, defend 2, move 2, cost 6,9, 12 . . .
Transport: attack 0, defend 1, move 2, cost 12, 18, 24 . . .
Industrial Complex: cost 10, 20, 30 . . .

For example, 3 forts cost 1+2+3 = 6. Three infantry cost 1+2+3 = 6.
Two tanks cost 4+ 6 = 10. Etc. Under this production rule, players tended to buy varied unit types each turn.

Also, I allowed naval units to non-combat move 6 spaces.

The resulting war resembled the actual war, with the German making way aganst the Russians, only to be stopped by stout Russian defenses, then ground down by the Russians and Allies. The German played more cautiously than historically. When he realized he couldn't beat Russia, he forted up. The Japanese ran wild, as the American didn't have rsources both the stop Japan and to crush Germany. (In hindsight, I should have shifted more Allied weight to contain Japan, as soon as Germany was contained by the liberation of France, Scandinavia, Italy, and Eastern Europe. But fighting the Japanese fleet was high-risk and high-expense, whereas beating Germany was slow, but certain.) The game ended with Germany destroyed, and a huge Japanese armada about to enter the East Mediterranean. Japan was doomed, but it would have taken some time to catch up to Japan in naval might, with Britain stripped of most of its colonies and unable to build much. Japan crushed China in about 5 moves. In my version China relied on its own building and resource base, and got some extra IPC from the West as long as Burma-Bengal (between Indochina & India on my map) remained froendly. But the Russians stopped Japan's Siberian progress with a wall of forts and infantry. The Russians also had a small but annoying "Red China" territory and army in Yenan, adjacent to Mongolia. Japan couldn't afford to attack Siberia and Red China and at the same time sweep Australia, South Asia, and East Africa. About fourteen turns had elapsed when we ended the game. In my game time, that's seven years.

The artillery fought by rolling one die for every enemy fort and infantry in the adjacent territory. The hit receiver removed forts first to satisfy the hits. Only one artillery attack was permitted against a territory per turn. This limitation on artillery attrition slowed the ground game down. So, in my next play test, I will not limit the number of artillery which may fire at one territory.

Larry
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Post by Larry » Fri Feb 18, 2005 12:33 pm

Griffey – thanks for that blow by blow. Off the top, and this could be just me, but I don’t like the progressive cost formula you have there. My instincts tell me that it feels contrived and designed to force players to spread out their purchase. I’d much rather encourage such spread out purchases by increasing the impact and power of “combined arms”.

I’m intrigued with increased naval movement. At the same time I’m having problems with differencing range for aircraft and ships based on what movement phase it is – combat and noncomat. I think they should be the same.

I love how, in you game, Japan followed its historic path.

I’m not sure what you conclude with the artillery – seems like you conclude nothing yet. I’m not comfortable with the system. It seems to make artillery too powerful. You know more about this than I do.

Regards

Griffey
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Location: Houston

Artillery; Unit costs

Post by Griffey » Sat Feb 19, 2005 3:43 am

Dear Larry,

Artillery
The only objection we had to my simulation with artllery attrition and progressive unit costs was that it was TOO realistic. The only note of unreality was that Japanese fleet approaching the Mediterranean. But after 7 game years, who knows what's possible?

Artillery, as it was used, with each power limited to one artillery attrition of an enemy territory per turn, was not too strong. Actually, I was thinking it was too weak. Example:

The Hun had 20 IPC income in Germany, and used it to build 4 Forts (1 + 2 +3+4 IPC) and 4 Infantry (1 +2 +3 +4 IPC) each turn. Each turn, his stack of about 24 Forts and 24 Infantry was hit by three successive artillery attritions, Russian, British, and American. Each attrition took away about 1/6 of the Hun's units. So his stack of units each turn went from about 24 Forts and 24 Infantry to 16 Forts & 24 Infantry after the first artillery fired, to 9 Forts and 24 Infantry after the second fired, to 4 Forts and 24 Infantry after the third. Finally, after a year and a half of this softening up, the Allies brought up enough tanks and infantry to crush the 30-odd units the Hun had piled. 30 units would represent about 3 million Hun infantry, which is about what they had on hand at the end.

Production
The progressive unit cost rule is also realistic, not a contrivance. At the end of the war, there were millions of enemy infantry in Germany and Japan. Almost no matter how badly they were battered by bombing, they always managed to scrape up more fortifications and infantry. It was the fancy stuff they couldn't afford at the end. But these inexpensive infantry units also wilted quickly under fire, and this my artillery attrition models nicely. Artillery attrition prevents a power from stacking beyond a certain number of infantry units.

The economic principle of increasing unit cost is familiar to all of us college dudes. In my production scheme, even the poorest country can afford a couple of infantry. But most countries cannot produce everything they want. There were, e.g., only so many dry docks and ship yards. If a power wanted more ships immediately, it would need to build more facilities and and pay more for raw materials. The more scarce the means and materials, the steeper the rise in unit cost per unit built. That's why the increase for infantry is low, and for battleships, high. Human material is (sadly) cheap in this war, and high grade steel and skilled workers are scarce.

The production scheme also realistically prevents powers from wildly shifting production from weapon type to weapon type, e.g., from all infantry to all submarines builds.

In the game, only America could afford to produce one of almost every unit type. The other powers had to concentrate on building land units, or air units, or naval units. But the lower first unit costs in my progressive unit cost scheme puts things like subs in reach even of strapped powers, like USSR.

Griffey
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Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:00 pm
Location: Houston

Movement

Post by Griffey » Sat Feb 19, 2005 4:52 am

Dear Larry, one might want to remove the double move in Phase 2.


AXIS (or Allies) POWER TURN SEQUENCE

1. Aircraft and Surface Naval Units May Non-Combat Move

2. All Units May Combat Move* or Non-Combat Move. Non-Combat Moving Naval Units (including subs) May Move Double Their Normal Movement Allowance.

3. Combat.

4. All Units May Non-Combat Move.


* Except AAA and artillery, which have no Combat Movement Allowance, and fight by attrition.

--In this scheme, all aircraft & surface naval units can use all three movement phases. Subs and ground units use two of the three movement phases, and AAA and artillery can use one movement phase. Points of movement allowance which a unit does not need to use in a movement phase are simply lost and are never carried over to any subsequent movement phase.

UNIT MOVES (PHASE 1 + PHASE 2 + PHASE 3) = MAX MOVE PER CALENDAR TURN (MM)

Infantry 0+1+1 = MM 2.
Elite Infantry 0+1+1 = MM 2.
Artillery 0 +0+1 = MM 1.
AAA 0+0+1 = MM 1.
Tank 0+2+2 = MM 4.
Fighter 1+1+1 = MM3.
Bomber 2 +2+2 = MM 6.
Battleship 2+4+2 = MM 8.
Carrier 2+4+2 = MM 8.
Destroyer 2+4+2 = MM 8.
Transport 2+4+2 = MM 8.
Submarine 0 +4 +2 = MM 6.

The addends above are the unit's maximum movement allowance in Phase 1, Phase 2, and Phase 4, in the POWER TURN SEQUENCE above.

Example: a Transport, in Phase 1, non-combat moves two spaces. In Phase 2, it non-combat moves four spaces or combat moves two spaces. In Phase 4, it non-combat moves 2 spaces. All together, it can non-combat move eight spaces in one Calendar Turn. If it combat moved, it could only move six spaces in one Calendar turn. 2+2+2.

Note: Transports (cost 12): may carry three (3) IPC, infantry, tank, AAA, artillery, or fighters in non-combat movement, but only one (1) infantry or tank in combat movement. Exception: a Transport may carry two (2) elite infantry (attack @ 2) in combat movement. Transports may not end a movement phase loaded with infantry.

Here, naval units may non-combat move great distances, but may not combat movement great distances.

This also reduces the combat movement range of fighters and bombers to more realistic distances, while giving them a preliminary non-combat move to surpise the enemy. I would redesign Western Europe and Germany, eliminating the snakey coastal stand of Western Europe, to keep Germany in bomber range.

I would redesign the map to make sea zones more equal-area. E.g., about 1000 miles wide, so Japan and USA have about six sea zones separating them.

Battleship hits should be repairable only when a Battleship is adjacent to a same-nationality IC at the end of the Calendar Turn. Thus, fleets fighting far from home face greater risks than those at home.

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adlertag
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Post by adlertag » Sat Feb 19, 2005 7:09 am

Griffy, I am totally with you.
I actually think in the same lines myselves.
But you are posting in wrong forum, Revised are already out on the marked, its rules will never be changed, not in a hundred years.

Please post your ideas in 2th stage Advanced forum, I'll probaply back you up.

But first you really should have a look into 3th stage How to win forum. This game is turning into an ahistorical "Build an Empire" game, where all players have the same winning conditions. Germany need to occupie x territories to win, and USA need to occupie x territories to win. Telling the players that there really was no difference between Hitler and FDR, since they both win the same way.

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Post by elbowmaster » Sat Feb 19, 2005 2:09 pm

good stuff griffey 8)

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adlertag
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Post by adlertag » Sun Feb 20, 2005 7:28 am

Griffy, I have started playtesting your system, and love it.
(Except, I use Larrys new sub-system with ENR and Sub-Strike , that system rules.)

Question:
During Blitz-krieg Combat, what are the targeting ?

Can fighters or tanks pick their targets ?
Is it the killed units owner that pick his casualties ?
Can you pick units in the same line as casualties, like fighters can pick other fighters as casualties, and tanks can pick other tanks as casualties ?

One tank attack a territory with 5 defending artillery. Can this lonely tank just overrun 5 artilleries, with no possiblilty to be hit itselves ?

Why dont you want battleships to shore-bombard ?
Battleships did shore-bombard land units, both as independet operations and as pre-landing softening, both in ww1, ww2 and modern wars like Vietnam and Iraq.

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