• I am trying to build my understanding of the game by reading Don’s A&A Strategic Essays. I am also reading some of the answers to various questions posed here.

    Doesn’t all this micro-mangement take away from the spontaneity and “fun” of the game? All these “you have to do this 1st turn and that 2nd turn” seem a bit much. I know the some answers will be, “Do you want to win or not?” But is the game that flawed that there is only one way for each nation to effectively play and any deviation from it, while it may not cost you the game, will not be as effective as it should be?

  • I disagree. It’s like chess, there are a whack of opening moves and strategies. This for a game that is trivial when comparing the number of possible moves. There is no perfect move, rather you collect a repertoire of moves and directions you can go.

    You’re dead if you pick a strategy and stick to it at all costs. After the dice start to dictate the game your plans MUST change. It’s the player who is the most flexible who will have the best winning percentage. Usually that player has a big tool box. Pick a tool and slightly modify it for the task at hand. Be the river the seeks the path of least resistance grasshopper… 🙂


  • Moderator

    I agree with BB. There is no perfect move or perfect strategy. You must be able to adapt. And sometimes an unexpected move on your part could give you the advantage. Now your opponent must adapt to you.

    A general “have to” is to sink all allied ships on rd1 as Ger. Well, one game I didn’t and went all out for Russia. I took Kar and eventually surrounded Moscow and I think I eventually won by getting to 84 IPC. Of course the allies pounded WE and took it early and held it, but were never able to put a large enough force there the threaten Ger ( I moved my gun and was able to strafe), so once Rus was crippled, I concentrated on WE and took it back, helping me get to 84. It also kept the allies out of Afr, cause they kept dumping small forces to WE instead.

  • Sorry, wrong thread. Moved to
    Have settled on some rules……

  • Darth Maximus is right on the money once again. Another example is you can throw everything you have at the North Sea T1 & watch all your FTRs blow up in your face due to lousy dice rolls. There’s no one way to do anything.

    A lot of the strategies you see online are of the nature of “here’s how you win”. That is because many of the players online PLAY online–vs. strangers/ in tournaments w/ others etc. In these instances what you want to know is “What set of game moves gives me the best chance of victory vs. a generic opponent”–you don’t always know what your opponent will play like online, so you want a good, reliable strategy. Unfortunately many of these are a tad boring. The simple fact of the matter is that’s ok “as long as they win”…

    Now if you (like me) play on the board w/ your buddies, then you know the people you play against. You can tailor your strategy to your opponent and you may find you use vastly different strategies as, say Germany vs. USSR player “A”, than UK vs. Japan player “B” and so on. In this case, it’s STILL extremely useful to read some of the tried & true strategies & principles & get advice from more experienced players to help you win/ make the game more interesting. But your individual game will be more flexible. You won’t get to be as brutally expert at winning games as the players who play 3000+ games vs. all manner of opponents online (trust me, you won’t), but that doesn’t matter–your games will be lively & interesting & different every time.

    Just please always do 1 thing: rotate players often! Don’t have the same people play the same powers over & over. That’s one great way to prevent “inflexibility”…


  • there are a number of openings near the beginning, but what i have seen is that the game ususally gets interesting after the first few turns. It is at this point that you can do more interesting things that are less likely to be the same for every game. Plus it can get intense (who wants to lose a game they have been playing for 5 hours or so?)

  • or more importantly if ur playing the board game, another3 hrs just to set the dern thing up

  • “There you go again!” - my reponse to d_r_'s witty remark.
    “There you go again!” - Ronald Reagan’s reponse
    to his debate opponent’s stupid statements.

  • This is a long range problem that you won’t have to worry about until you’ve played that way a few years. Once you and your opponent have really mastered the game in the long run, A&A does get pretty repetitive. At that point you either enjoy it in it’s new form, (more like chess with dice) - or you get tired of it. Some of my friends won’t play A&A any more - they smirk and say “I’ve already played that game.”

  • Plus you can’t anticipate what your opponents do.

    First turns can be choreographed because the starting situation is always the same

    But once you get to third or fourth turns, you have no idea what has happened and thus have to adapt to your opponent.

  • Actually, I agree with Don in his strategic essays. For example, there’s NOTHING Germany can do to stop a large allied fleet in the North Sea. Such absurd luck would be required to break a carrier, 2 fighters, and 4 transports. The losses incurred if they were to beat the north sea fleet would lose the eastern front. Also, people forget that the best way to use America is through attacking Germany. Japan takes way too much IPCs and travel time to effectively counter. Plus, by dropping units near Germany every turn, it forces them to keep units in Western Europe and algeria, taking pressure off of Russia. Perhaps the greatest contribution the essay makes is England’s strategy. To be effective, UK MUST stall Japan by building a factory in India. They will hold it with 4 inf and a fighter. Japan cannot take India and must instead focus on taking China the first turn, lest US buil a complex on Sinkaing. I have played many games with both the same and random opponents, and Don’s right in how the game plays out. If there is a deviance from EITHER axis or allies in the purchasing strategies, that side will lose.

  • Don is right on most stuff, but not everything. The India factory, for instance … how is England supposed to build a factory there and a CV too? Besides, an Indian IC is not really needed - a good R player can hold off J till turn 5 at least, and by then UK/USA forces should be flowing in abundance in the Finland / Karelia / Moscow pipeline.

  • England is always effective when I play and I never build a factory in India. One can debate the merits of the India factory ploy. However, to say that ploy is the only way for England to be effective against Japan is silly. Dropping off 6-8 infantry per round into Karelia then into moscow is a pretty effective way to fight Japan.

    I’m not a fan of splitting up my countries combat force into 2 largish forces, I much prefer to have ‘scouts and feelers’ with one large battering ram. When England builds a factory in India it effectively forces England into a major forces split in my opinion, and for me, that is reason alone to shy away from the IC in India ploy. It may be effective for the playing styles of others I’ll admit.


  • I also don’t like to build the India IC… Depending on G1 in Africa, I’ll usually pull all UK troops from India over to Africa, moving the Syria Iraq INF to Persia. Force Japan to spread out to take both North and South Asia… Lots of Units, but only usually 1 large “attack force” to deal with Russia until J4. It’s hard to look past turn 4 in terms of “genral strategy”, since so many different things can happen during the course of the game.

    I’ve built the India IC about 5 times, all with disastrous results. Japan is not slowed down to any significant degree, Germany is easily able to take most of Africa early. The the UK is forced to spend $15 on tanks for India each turn until it falls (You’re not going to hold it for long, so why go with INF? Try to take out as many expensive Jap pieces as you can)… About the only reason I can see to build the India IC is to build bombers and force Japan to guard thier Sea of Japan TRNs… And the UK can’t afford to do that, reinforce Kariella, and land troops in WEu or Spain… They lose too much of thier income too quickly, especialy giving up Africa. An average German player can have the UK down to about $22 by T3 (E and W Canada, UK, India (if you’re building the IC), Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Madagascar, and Persia/Syria Iraq) , and if you’re buying 3 tanks a turn, that’s only 2 INF that you can drop in Europe…Never mind the fact that buying the IC precluded purchasing ANY transports until UK2…

    I find that its much better to pull out of India, either to Sinkiang or Anglo-Egypt Sudan, and concentrate on holding parts of Africa (or at least making it expensive for Germany to take it) and landing troops in Kariella, WEu, or Spain…

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