We brought back return fire because of the increase in lob shot power that came about by the introduction of cruisers in AA50.
But we also saw there needed to be another modification to amphibs. That is where the matching land unit to lob shot came in.
My group pushed for these changes since the Revised rules would have made amphibs (with the added lob shot power) a better attack than a regular land battle. The attacker gets the lob shots added to their normal attack numbers and some of the defenders would have been removed before they even get to fire.
Plus, one of the players in my group is nicknamed “Mr. Loophole” because he always works all the rules to the max. He is the type that loves to amphib with a ton of lob shots and one infantry unit so as to kill a crap load of defenders at the cost of one guy. That would have been exaggerated in AA50 if we didn’t find a way to change it.
Thanks for sharing that. Your comments about the ease of amphibious assaults compared to land battles in AAR games are very true. The original AAP with marines also comes to mind. US amphibious assaults were just devastating, and given their wealth in that game, the US never built standard infantry.
I remember swapping a few emails with Rob Daviau after AAE about the idea of no more ships supporting than units landed. He had told me it was close to making it into AAE but was decided against (I don’t recall why). The reduced shore bombardment of destroyers was used instead for the 2nd ed rules. But yeah, the land one inf with 6 lob shots is exactly the type of sleaze tactic I didn’t like (no offense to “Mr. Loophole”, who actually sounds like an ideal playtester to help find and close these type of things).