Changes still needed to the game, IMHO

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator



    Says another guy who doesn’t play online. Though, I did miss that he was refering to a post two pages back, so my bad there, I was wrong, feel free to start up a forum game as the Axis so you can school me, though, I don’t think it’s going to happen.

    This really has nothing to do with seeing who is better, it’s about Cmdr Jenneifers (IMO ludicrous) statement that the allies can afford for USA  to go 100% pacific. I might actually be interested in playing a game where we test that theory.

    At the same time, we could test whether or not it’t child’s play to keep japan below 40 IPCs.

    @Jen. Why are the DEI not an option in alpha+.2?

    The only time I ever see the Japanese get the DEI or any of the strong point NOs is when America dutifully sends stuff to Europe/Africa.  I suspect you play with more “honest” players and less “power” players.  Honest players use America to try and win the war in Europe and in the Pacific by putting some money into the Atlantic.  They generally land troops in Africa or put warships out to help England rebuild a fleet.  Then take what is left and try to contain Japan.  Power players generally put 90% or more of their income into the Pacific, crush Japan like a bug, smack them around a bit, and giggle when the Axis finally conceed because Japan has no chance, never had a chance.

    It is specifically this second group of players we are attempting to rebalance.

    Further, it should be noted that Russia and England do not need help in stopping Germany/Italy from winning.  They have adequate to more than adequate income and firepower to prevent a VC win until Japan has been isolated on it’s little island.  It is rare indeed to see German equipment in Stalingrad, let alone within walking distance of Moscow (adjacent territories.)  It is common to see Japan reduced to Japan, a scattering of islands around Japan and part of China, with no further incursion.  This is why DEI is impossible to attain against a dedicated America.  The earliest you can hope to attain it is Round 4 (since pre-emptively attacking America is even worse than waiting for them to come out later, or at least, that’s how it seems to most and Krieghund’s made mention that the play testers have yet to find a viable pre-emptive Japanese attack strategy) and that’s the same as giving England/Australia those IPC un-opposed.  After they take it, then you have to kill what’s on it and take it, that requires transports.  If you want all 4, then you need at a minimum 4 transports, but realistically, you need ships to defend them, you need planes to support them, you need to get into position, etc, etc, etc…

    Simple fact of the matter is, by round 6 at the latest, a dedicated American objective agianst Japan will have succeeded and Japan will be on a permanently downward slope from that point on.  There’s absolutely nothing you can do about it as Japan.  Germany and Italy don’t have a prayer of getting the VCs needed to win on the Atlantic by round 6, they don’t have a prayer by round 8!  By round 13 they will be next to Stalingrad, maybe have part of the Middle East and Japan will be reduced to a smoldering cinder (Japan and SZ 6 only, maybe not even SZ 6) and America will be landing in N. Africa and preparing D-Day and S. Italy invasions. (After about 8 rounds of play, America no longer has to invest anything into the Pacifc, there is nothing left to kill, all they need is to move what htey have around to collect stragglers and sink anything that wasn’t defending SZ 6.)

    I submit, Mantlefan, that you have played nothing but weak and/or unimaginative players and that is why you find it hard to agree with, what seems like, the majority of the gaming community in that Japan needs a boost or the allies need a nerf to balance the game.  Until you play some of the good players, I recommend reading and keeping your insults to yourself.  If you have something constructive to say, by all means, pipe up.

  • I think you"all should set up a board or two and let the dice do talking.      In the 8 or so games we’ve sat down to everybody seems to think that the money USA gets when it goes to war is big a game changer, as far as the split on the spending only once did I see a USA dump on one side or the other , it was in the Atlantic and Japan had a free realm in its hands. Otherwise we spend some in the east and some in the west with the Lions share going to the west.       What if   The only way to increase your income is to take Territory the USA would have to cross an Ocean.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator


    I think you"all should set up a board or two and let the dice do talking.

    Love to set up a board or 17 with various “house” rules to test which option for the Pacific Theater works the best in balancing the game.

  • My group has played 3 games of alpha +2 now and we have all found it pretty balanced.  Some of the arguments (most are descended into chest thumping) make no sense in my opinion.  I’ve never seen Russia out produce Germany until the late game, Japan always does well in the games I’ve played (of course it can’t crush China, India, Russia, ANZAC, and US at once, but it really doesn’t need to…), and when the US in one of our games decided to go all in Pacific, the game ended in disaster since the Japanese refused to engage their navy and simply consolidated and kept building his fleet as the US fleet moved closer, resulting in the US wasting tons of IPC on a naval attack it never even attempted because it never was able to get odds.  Maybe Japan could have 3 or so more infantry on Asia, but it really does not need another NO (when does Japan declare war on the Allies in these games that have gone so badly, it gets money for sitting it out for a while) and definitely not all those planes again for OOB.  The US needs to make the money it does, it has to build at least 2 solid fleets and every land unit costs 3.5 IPC to move and takes about 1-2 turns to get where it needs to go.  I have to agree with the people who have said the Axis opponents must not have been up to par, or maybe they just werent being creative enough.

  • I’m curious as to where the Japanese fleet sat, and why the US couldn’t pick them off and get them to engage. To me that sounds like uninspired US play. I’m playing a similiar game to that now, where the Japanese tried to sit in the Phillipines and from the Carolines the US fleet can hit to many ares, I’ve been able to deny Japan all NO bonuses and even with a horribly unlucky attack I took out a good chunk of the Japanese fleet in Japan and still feel I have the advantage in the game. All you really have to do is deny the Axis one or two victory cities and eventually you’ll steam roll the Axis.

    In Europe the USA has been aiding the Brits with minimal IPC’s invested, and though Germany is starting to threaten Russia a bit more, Russia will not be falling before the Brits are landing in Europe. Once again, I’m not saying the game is unwinable for the Axis, but, I think it is slanted towards the Allies.

  • The Jap fleet sat in 6 and simply got bigger and bigger.  The Americans were based in Hawaii and couldn’t leave it because it would split their fleet that they kept building in 10.  It was pretty uninspired, but that’s my point.  If the US goes all in on one board the Axis should be able to take advantage.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I agree with Geist in-so-much as it was unimaginative American play, probably.

    Dadler, 3 games are not enough to really judge the balance of a game.  Especially this game, since this is the first ever in a long line of global games where KJF isnt only a good strategy, its really the only strategy that makes sense, given just how easy it is.

    Try having your team go full pacific with America.  Couple that with a Russian turtle and English assaults in Africa/Med to stop Italy from getting those NOs.  I think you’ll quickly discover one simple fact:  Russia and England can easily prevent Germany and Italy from getting out of hand.  Yes, you will have to give up some of your land, but since you are not playing to win in Europe, that’s a non-starter anyway.  England and Russia only have one objective:  Prevent an Axis Victory City Win.  Anything else can be yielded in the short term. (Short defined as less than 15 rounds of play.)

    Along with that, you will quick discover that you can roll the Japanese back to Japan in relatively short order, using what remnants of the American fleet you have left to keep them on Japan only.  IF you do not win by VCs now, it shouldn’t take long before you do.

    Hints:  Destroyers are an AWESOME build for America.  America does not need more than 15 submarines.  7 Aircraft Carriers = “I Win Button” for America.  Stage from Hawaii (you can hit Japan, Carolines, Australia.)  Later stage from Philippines (You can hit EVERYTHING, except Hawaii/Alaska).

    Hints:  China can be conservative.

    Hints:  England does not have to wait til round 4 to attack Japan, but Japan pretty much has to wait until round 4 to attack England. (Or you lose the 10 IPC NO, bring America in early and essentially remove your foot with a chainsaw for no apparent reason.)

    That should get your team going in such a way that the Allies win 9 out of 10 games.  Report back what you find.

  • @eudemonist:

    If it is your opinion that Russia and England can overpower Germany and Italy without any help from the Americans (which I strongly disagree with), it seems like Europe must necessarily be imbalanced, does it not?

    I agree, I personally see the European Axis in need of a boost. Italy usually gets shut down either from India moving over troops and amphibious assaulting or South Africa pumping out mechanized infantry, depending on what Germany does. and then once they begin retreating in Africa/middle east is about the time the US comes in to play, and then in another couple turns they have 8 American subs convoying them out of cash. Meanwhile if Germany goes Sea Lion, Russia is probably bearing down on Poland and Romania, and America is gearing up to liberate London. Or if Germany goes all out on Russia than Italy gets shut down even faster, meaning the UK and US are building up transports on Gibraltar or England where they can hit much of Europe.

    Honestly, Japan doesn’t have a chance if US goes all out Pacific, but then it should be a cakewalk for Germany and Italy. All they need is Cairo, London, Leningrad, and Stalingrad. Without US pressure, thats not far fetched.


    I agree with Geist in-so-much as it was unimaginative American play, probably.

    Dadler, 3 games are not enough to really judge the balance of a game.  Especially this game, since this is the first ever in a long line of global games where KJF isnt only a good strategy, its really the only strategy that makes sense, given just how easy it is.

    Try having your team go full pacific with America.  Couple that with a Russian turtle and English assaults in Africa/Med to stop Italy from getting those NOs.  I think you’ll quickly discover one simple fact:  Russia and England can easily prevent Germany and Italy from getting out of hand.  Yes, you will have to give up some of your land, but since you are not playing to win in Europe, that’s a non-starter anyway.  England and Russia only have one objective:  Prevent an Axis Victory City Win.  Anything else can be yielded in the short term. (Short defined as less than 15 rounds of play.)

    Honestly Jennifer, I can’t see a Japanese player not being able to block the US for at least 3 turns once war is on if US goes all-out Pacific. By this time, Japan might only be 10 or so IPCs behind, and while ANZAC and UKP are minor issues, Japan should have pushed through much of China and can probably take the DEI before the Americans attack. While Japan will lose eventually, Germany could take UKE out by turn 3 or 4 and if Russia is all that stands in the way of Italy and Germany, Germany’s transports should be enough to quickly take Leningrad and their army in one or two turns should be pushing through eastern Europe. If Japan actually gets taken, by the time the US shifts to Europe Moscow is probably besieged.

    Now I’m not as experienced as you for sure, but I think Japan has it all right. The Allies cant afford to only fight in one theater.

  • Thanks for the hints but I’ve been playing axis and allies for over 10 years now.  Don’t be condescending because based on my experience I disagree with you.

    _Hints:  Destroyers are an AWESOME build for America.  America does not need more than 15 submarines.  7 Aircraft Carriers = “I Win Button” for America.  Stage from Hawaii (you can hit Japan, Carolines, Australia.)  Later stage from Philippines (You can hit EVERYTHING, except Hawaii/Alaska).  _

    A smart Japanese player will position their fleet to wipe America’s out when it moves out of 10, I know I can and have.  If America has spent that much money on aircraft carriers and air, Germany should have London and be at the gates of Moscow.  Not to mention an Italian Africa.

    Hints:  China can be conservative.

    China should be wiped by round 4 barring bad dice, you can’t do it all as Japan obviously, but killing China going for Russia after usually works well for me.

    Hints:  England does not have to wait til round 4 to attack Japan, but Japan pretty much has to wait until round 4 to attack England. (Or you lose the 10 IPC NO, bring America in early and essentially remove your foot with a chainsaw for no apparent reason.)

    Exactly, so how is China not dead and Russia panicking about Japan’s position on the mainland…

  • Jen:
    I have not seen one game where russia takes scandinavia early, nor understand how russia can afford to when they need every last soldier to hold off the main attack.  Usually I see germ with 8-10 infantry in scandinavia.  You would need your starting airforce plus a similar amount if infantry for an effective attack(assuming germ does not see it coming and does not land airforce there), when germany is barreling down on u with italian can openers and 8-10 arm 7-8 mech,and 18+ rtl and 20+ inf, its very difficult to divide your forces. Also, the allies were nerfed just as much as Japan was in Alpha 2 vs oob if not more, they lost the same amount of air, and US NO’s are easier to mess up.  Also the change in turn order prevents uk/anzac can openers followed by a massive US attack.  Japan should easily be able to destroyer block the main US fleet, while picking off the DEI, locking down india, crippling the chinese resistance, and potentially steal moneys from russia.  It seems that the axis players in your games are not quite as skilled as the allies if axis have it that bad. Maybe balance the teams better.
    I can understand your claim that axis needs a buff or allies need a nerf, but you seem do be exagerating the imbalance a little.

  • @dadler12:

    The Jap fleet sat in 6 and simply got bigger and bigger.  The Americans were based in Hawaii and couldn’t leave it because it would split their fleet that they kept building in 10.  It was pretty uninspired, but that’s my point.  If the US goes all in on one board the Axis should be able to take advantage.

    I don’t really see how a poor USA player proves that the Axis is up to par. I think you may be mistaking when people say US goes all out on Japan for not buying a single units in Europe. USA can spend a very minimal amount in Europe while 90% to 95% of their production beats Japan down. I think at heart we all want G40 to be a great game, some of us just think it’s not quite there yet. It seems like there were very similiar arguements when people said the J1 attack in Pac40 was broken, granted this isn’t as huge as the J1 was, but the Allies just seem like they do not get pressured like they should.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator


    Your quote from eudemonist (#60) is erronious because eudemonist was sorely mistaken in what was being said.

    No one said that England and Russia can TAKE Europe.  What is being said is that England and Russia can withstand the awesome might of the Germans and Italians, with tactical redeployments as necessary, and last until Japan has been neutrallized and America can build an Atlantic fleet and move it’s armies over through Russia and over the Atlantic.

    The thing is, England and Russia are more than capable in preventing a Victory City win by Germany/Italy until America is free to help, allowing America full, uncontested, sway in the Pacific because Japan just CANNOT stop them.


    Any Japanese attack on the American fleet will result in mutual destruction at best. (Mutual destruction is defined as the Americans will have enough firepower to sink anything you have left.)

    This is HORRIBLE!  Japan cannot possibly rebuild, but America can drop 2 loaded carriers and some destroyers/submarines every round!

    China will NOT be wiped out, barring ATTROCIOUS dice for China…who are you playing?  They really need to work on their England/China skills!

    But I think you answered yourself in your last line of Reply #61.


    Russian owned Scandinavia seems to be a pretty standard event these days.  If Germany went for England, then they sapped their strength on the RUssian front allowing more Russians to be free to campaign up north, if Germany is going against Russia, then they have no fleet because England sank it and Russia can send minimal forces to Scandinavia.

    The change in turn order only makes life boring for all the players, IMHO.  Why is England can-opening for America anyway?  England needs to be reinforcing China while America pummels the shit out of Japan in the water and ANZAC makes strikes of opportunity through the American lines to pick up islands.

    Again, I’m going to have to agree with Geist #63.  Just because the allies you play with at home do not know how to stop you as the Axis does not mean the game is balanced.  I used to win all the time without bids in classic and revised, it did not mean the games were balanced, it just meant my skill was superior enough to win despite the balance being off.  (I also lost with bids against superior players, don’t take this to mean I think I am Larry’s gift to Axis and Allies, I just want to demonstrate a point that just because something CAN be done, does not mean it is NORMAL.)

  • I think part of your problem commander is that you wait till round 4 to attack with Japan.  The FIC NO is really only worth 8ipcs, while the DEI is worth 20!!!  If you wait until Round 4, then each island is defended by 2 ground units and ANZAC and UKP are both raking in the dough.  If however you attack earlier, then you usually can hit unguarded allied trns in the DEI while grabbing Phillipines.  I believe you should be more willing to attack the allies earlier.

    I also have noticed that as Japan, your fate goes with your fleet.  So why risk it?  I have no problem plopping down a carrier and a few destroyers if it means my fleet survives.  Asia is great, but without a fleet you cannot reach the mainland.

    Also, destroyers /are/ the best purchase for the pacific.  Good at aa, also keeps pesky subs outta convoy zones.  I purchase mostly subs and dds in my games and seem to do quite well.

  • Japan is capable of plenty as is.  If the US goes all in the Pacific the first six turns then Germany and Italy are also very capable of winning the victory cities in Europe.  Germany is capable of killing Russia if left to its own and US does not show up in Europe.  Germany starts with a very large unit advantage against Russia especially after it activates the pro axis infantry in the area G1.  If Russia just builds a wall of Infantry than Germany can advance faster and eat their economy.  If they buy too many offensive units and US has not dropped a cent in the Atlantic by turn 6 they better be very careful against an Axis player who is skilled at attacking Russia.  Russia is big but it is very doable to take their capital if US is not around.  If Russia falls then goodbye bye IPC advantage the allies had and hello Big Daddy Germany.
    Italy can also grow quite large and it very capable of recovering from the UK1 fleet attack with no US showing up.

    And I just don’t see how a US player could break the back of a skilled Japan player in the Pacific in six turns if the Japan player is conservative with it’s Navy and keeps the Air Force in tact.  Japan can out maneuver the US Navy once it leaves Hawaii and will always be two turns of production ahead of it.  Then if the US Navy trys to come out too far Japan can send it to Davy Jone’s Locker with a one two punch from their Navy and Air Force.

    I have read the arguments on here that Japan is too weak but I disagree. I believe Larry Harris came darn close to balancing this game with the research he put into Alpha +2.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I have attempted Japan attacks at all phases of the game with multiple attempts against multiple players.  The best return for Japan, against players over average or greater skill than I, is to attack either on Round 4 or on Round 3. (Either way, that makes it the latest for America to collect their NOs and thus, puts America at the weakest possible part of the game.)

    The DEI is worth a great sum of money.  If you can entire England to violate the neutrality with you, it would be easier to get DEI (since you are now permitted to bombard the limies right off the map.)  If they do not, the fallout from attacking early far out-weighs the gain.  Hence, as most Brits won’t attack you, the earliest you can possibly get DEI is round 4, and only if you have yourself set up for an immediate attack on those four nations.  Granted, America is most likely piled into Hawaii/Aleutians ready to nail Japan/Korea by this point, so you have minimal transport defenses at best if you are down there.  Hence, it’s very hard if not impossible to get DEI and hold it for any period of time. (American players seem to enjoy Hawaii/Aleutians, and with good reason, you have to keep ships up by Japan which means less down by Australia so in effect, you’re being stretched too thin.)

    I also build with about half my income at the very least in naval units.  If you don’t put ground units in, you won’t be able to keep China/England ground forces subdued, so it’s really a catch-22.

    As for your assertion Frank, to break the back of Japan means to stop any expansion  by Japan and be in a position to start sniping away Japanese NOs.  Generally speaking, GOOD players are at this point by round 4 (start of Round 4) average to mediocre players are at this point by round 6, bad players may get to this point by round 8, but who cares what bad players do?

    Here’s how most games go down, from what I have seen and participated in:

    1)  Russia and England turtle and eliminate the Italian pressence in Africa.  This is actually pretty easy since the British fleet is in prime position to sink over half the Italians with inconsequential losses - it is even better if you can get a German plane or two while you’re at it.  Russia lines the German border with mass units.  As Germany gets stronger, Russia retreats into their reinforcements and steals into Scandinavia.  Italy, being unable to add reinforcements, is gone from Africa.  A simple shuffle of troops from S. Africa to Egypt should handle that, more so if Germany does not look to be setting up for an attack on London, since you can then put down a complex in Egypt and kick them out faster.  Fighters from India may assist if needed as they can easily fly back to India.

    2)  Japan invades deeper into China, but since England cannot really be attacked (it can, but it’s suicide) they cannot get any of their NOs except the FIC one.

    3)  America puts out huge hordes of ships every round (6 a round can go directly into the Pacific with a minor complex in Mexico - the rest off the coast of E. USA to sail to W. USA which is a short trip.)  Eventually, by round 4, America’s fleet is too massive to be sunk, not strong enough to sink the Japanese one.  By round 6, the American fleet is not only too massive to sink, but can swat the Japanese fleet aside crushing it and keeping all of their capitol warships at a minimum.  By round 8, Japan is land-locked, essentially, with what ships they have in SZ 6 protecting against invasion while Australia and India pick off islands reducing Japanese income.

    4)  America starts building in the Atlantic.  Now that Japan is no longer any kind of threat, America can focus on saving Russia.  Now Germany faces the ungodly income of the Americans and are stalematted in Russia.  It is only a matter of time now, with English forces pooring in through S. Africa, American forces transport trained into Scandinavia and down through North Russia and/or Landing in Europe directly, the game is over.

    How did it all come about?  Because America is way too strong at this point in time.  Japan either needs a buff so that they can counter a full American investment in the Pacific or America needs a penalty for investing too heavily in either theater.  Remember, Russia and England do not have to win, they just have to stop the allies from losing, that is significantly more easy!  With 52 IPC * 3 Rounds + 72 IPC for 2 rounds + 80 IPC for one round (gets you to end, round 6) America will have invested an extra 380 IPC into naval units to crush Japan.  Add to that the 129 in naval units they start with and the 83 IPC in air power they start with, you have a combined attack force worth 592 IPC.  Against that, you have Japan with 177 IPC in naval units at the start + 212 in Air power and only (given the benefit of the doubt here) 44 IPC a round income, the MOST you can have against America is 653 IPC in navy.  That may sound like enough, after all, one generally budgets to have 150% the attack punch of the defender, right?  But here’s the kicker, that Japanese number assumes no losses to your ships or aircraft and assumes no investment of ground units into China.  Essentially, that assumes China rolls over and plays dead, not attacking or building to counter you, and that just isn’t going to happen.  More realistically, Japan is going to have to invest about half their pay into destroying China, so drop that 44 IPC a round (best possible income, remember) to a more realistic 22 IPC a round and you get a more accurate picture: 521 IPC in units and most of those are planes so you will have to buy a lot of carriers to hold them all, or they no longer count and carriers have no attack value, so your punch goes down from there.  It is probably safe to say 3 aircraft from scrambling, and you probably have 4-6 in China helping there, so let’s drop 3 fighters and 2 tactical bombers from that list of Japanese units to defend against America, reducing Japan further to 469 IPC, including the strategic bombers which you won’t have on defense, so that goes down to 445 IPC defense vs 653 IPC offense.

    So you have 653 IPC in gear attacking Japan (less transports 3x = 21 IPC, reducing to 632 IPC) vs 521 IPC in gear defending (includes scrambled fighters from one Airbase).  That is 1.21 to 1 in America’s favor.  America would GLADLY take that any day of the week.  Even if you assume America loses the battle, there cannot be much of anything left of the Japanese fleet, certainly not enough to counter the Australians who are coming in for a second raid with a few destroyers and a cruiser if all there are for Japan are a scattering of damaged battleships.

    Now you are left with Japan earning 44 IPC and America earning 80 IPC.  Who is going to rebuild faster?  Yea.  Even assuming you got great dice and were able to sink all the Americans (and that just isn’t really going to happen, not often anyway, it might on an off day with the dice) you’ll never be able to press it for an advantage and America will.  Either way, your days are numbered.  Most likely, you are now taking CRD to Japan, England and Australia are landing reinforcements into China on a regular basis, Russia may start sending some tanks in as well to push the Japanese off the mainland faster (so you give them 12 IPC, they are unable to use it effectively anyway!) and America starts building carriers and transports to land troops in England/N. Africa and start threatening Germany’s soft under belly.

  • Not seeing what the OP’s talking about after a good 30 games of alpha .2.  The time it takes for the US to marginalize Japan with 100% Pacific builds roughly coincides with the time it takes Germany to pressure Russia back into turtling in Moscow, and with no US involvement whatsoever in the Atlantic there is no excuse for the Italians not to be sitting in Cairo around that time too, at which point the EuroAxis is poised to win the game.  I’m not even sold on the fact that the US push the Japs back to their homeland within any sort of reasonable time frame at all if the Japs deny the US the decisive naval battle they’re looking for as long as possible while using its starting land and air to pick off the minor allies one at a time.  I will agree that things get very dicey for Japan in the face of a full court press from the Allies possibly including UK/ANZAC turn 1 DOW’s plus simultaneous pressure from the Russian inf and whatever forces the Chinese can mount, but Japan starts off with an incredible amount of mobile firepower which can neutralize several of these threats if used wisely (i.e always with land to soak up hits).  Yeah Japan will never come close to its 6 VC’s and is ultimately doomed, but that doesn’t mean it rolls over and dies T6.  It has been my experience so far that the game’s ever so slightly tilted towards the Allies, but nowhere near to the degree that the suggested changes are in any way justified.  A smattering of extra land units in Asia are all that are really needed, 12-15 IPC’s in total IMHO, and Europe is near perfect.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Then you agree, Chompers, Japan needs a boost or America needs a deficit.  You just differ on degree and implementation.

    Personally, I think the issue is that England and Russia can last long enough for America to kill Japan and get over to save them.  If Japan was increased just enough that Germany and Italy would have a little more time and thus negate America’s ability to build in time to save Russia and England, the game would balance itself out because America would then feel compelled to spend something in the Atlantic to prevent Russia from falling. (England falling may or may not be moot, given it could fall prior to America entering the war in the first place, but then, American submarines can negate much of the benefit of that.)

    Honestly, that’s all I want.  I want it to be relatively assured that if America does not invest in one theater or the other, then the allies will lose the game.  I would be happy if America only had to invest 16 IPC in the Atlantic theater and the rest in the Pacific, that’s enough to reduce the speed in which America becomes unbeatable by Japan.  America will still have plenty of equipment that they can work against Japan, but won’t have that 121% strength as early.

    16 IPC per round, 6 rounds = 96 IPC. 
    We determined that America starts with 129 IPC in naval units (less 3 transports so 108 IPC in warships) and 83 IPC in Aircraft.
    We determined that Japan starts iwth 177 IPC in warships (less 3 transports so 156 IPC in warships) and has an effective air force of 160 (including strategic bombers and less aircraft set aside for use in China).

    That means, if Japan only invests 22 IPC a round, on average, to naval / air for naval power, they have a total of 448 IPC.
    That means, if America puts 16 IPC a round into the Atlantic and invests the rest into naval / air for naval power in the Pacific, they have a total of 419 IPC.

    Given the rate at which money is spent into the Pacific, if these levels continue, it only takes one extra round for America to exceed Japan’s naval / air for naval power.  But it might take 4 or 5 rounds longer to have the same surety of sinking the Japanese navy and that is enough time for Germany to break the stalemate with Russia if America does not intervene.

  • Yes, I do agree that some minor changes might be needed, but I think you would agree there’s a pretty large disparity between our suggestions.  IMHO the scale of some of the changes you’ve suggested are pretty game-breaking.  I’d like to add that I believe your analysis of the Pacific theater to be pretty spot-on, but I think you’re underestimating the detrimental effect of zero US investment early in Europe.  Frankly, if you (as the axis player) could go into every game in your group knowing that the US was going to dump 80-100% in the Pacific early on, what would hold you back from a G2 Barbarossa with the intent to have the Russians penned into Moscow by turn 6 or 7?  You’re a 60-70 point Germany by then, with the ability to sit in Bryansk thumbing your nose at a primarily defensive oriented Russian stack while trickling enough units via the Leningrad and Ukraine minors to (at worst) maintain parity with the Russians or ( more likely) gradually begin to outnumber them as a small group of mobile German units do doughnuts in the interior of Russia gobbling up the rest of its provinces.  Heck, I’d see no reason as Japan to not head on down and blow up India J3 or J4 depending on whether the Allied player blocked effectively after a J1 Hainan naval base build, and then follow that up by heading straight for Cairo 2 turns later, dispatching its surviving air to either suicide on Moscow when the time is right or sit in Europe watching the coast (I shudder to think how much more effective this would be if the Japs got their OOB planes back).  It could even churn out a batch of tanks or 3 from India to help with Moscow or Cairo, respectively.  The US needs to spend in both theaters simply in order to keep the Axis players honest, and prevent them from teaming up in their theater of choice.

    My 2 cents.

  • '10

    Personally, I think waiting until round four to attack with Japan is a terrible mistake, and almost certainly will lead to the Japs getting beat down, as by that time India and Anzac are pulling in serious money.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator


    Personally, I think waiting until round four to attack with Japan is a terrible mistake, and almost certainly will lead to the Japs getting beat down, as by that time India and Anzac are pulling in serious money.

    I agree that waiting until round 4 will result in the Japs getting beat down, as you so eloquently put it, but then, I also know from experience and witness that it’s worse if they attack before round 4.  Damned if you do, damned a little less if you dont.

    Chompers, you recommended an immediate influx of 18 IPC into the China front. The position of those units, as well as the units themselves, would have a more significant impact on the game than many of my original suggestions would.  Think about it, those infantry can put 4 rounds closer to their targets (Build, Move, Land, Attack = 4 moves).  However, asking America to put some units in the Atlantic Ocean before moving them to the Pacific Ocean adds nothing, takes nothing away and only delays them 1 turn.

  • I could deal with some more infantry in Asia for Japan, pretty sure I mentioned that idea in a previous post, what I was saying was that the proposed changes Cmdr Jennifer was making were outrageous game breakers that were not needed.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    And I submit that adding a bunch of infantry to the board is a greater change to the game than merely requiring America to spend money on both maps.

    We are talking infantry that start on mainland Asia for sure, probably on the front lines with the Chinese forces (which is where I suspect they would be placed) meaning you need less transports to move units, you don’t have to buy these units, and they are at best 4 rounds into the game at the start of the game since normally you would have to buy them, load them onto transports and unload them, move them inland and then they are available to attack.  Also, these infantry units are immune from the Chinese, Americans, British and Australians on the first round of play (because Japan gets to use them before any of those nations anyway) thus, they would significantly change the game’s make up.  In effect, you’re allowing a restricted bid of 18 IPC, give or take (which is what was talked about.)

    My preferred fix is to require America to spend money on both sides of the board.  It adds no new units, adds no new costs, does not significantly change any aspect of the game at all, since America can still move all those units to one side or the other.

    You want to talk game breaking, adding units will get you a lot closer, a lot faster than just having America build its fighters in E. USA and fly them to W. USA on their next turn ever will!

    And if you feel the reverse, tell us how negative is the opportunity cost, how many rounds are added or lost, what new units are added or removed, how does it significantly change the game, etc, etc.  I, personally, do not think anyone can make the argument that requiring America to build on both sides of the board could be in any way, fashion or form game breaking nor could it do more harm than good in regards to the balance of the game.  At least, no where near as strong an argument as can be made against adding or removing units from the board due, primarily, to the fact that adding units, or removing units to the board add strength in forward positions or reduces strength in forward positions.  Remember, you are not just “adding” an infantry unit, you are adding the unit which effects offensive and defensive ability, you are artificailly moving the unit from manufacturing, transport and movement into a position it would not normally be at if it was just built prior to round 1 and you are making significant alterations to game board tactics.  None of this occurs if you just require America to spend some cash on both sides of the board.

    And for the record, those of you who think America has to build on both sides of the board, then what are you complaining about?  Requiring them to do what they should be doing changes nothing from your viewpoint, right?  After all, if you think they HAVE to build on both sides, then REQUIRING them to do so does not harm them one iota.

    (I suspect many of you do not really believe your argument, hence you are using it as a strawman.  If you truly believed in your aguement, you would only be posting in agreement to the rule change.  Further, I suspect those who claim it is “game breaking” to require America to build on both sides of the board are weaker players and do not feel they could recover the minutia of alteration such a rule would require.  Many stronger players have, for years, built in the West and moved to the East to shield against Japan, now that Russia is a powerhouse, they do not have to do so anymore, so build directly into the Pacific, knowing it to be the over-powered strategy.  Thus, the rule change, in effect, would have America building fighters and tactical bombers in C. USA, Aircraft Carriers in W. USA and moving them all down to Hawaii on the next round.)

  • 12-15 IPC’s, not 18.  And I’m not even convinced it’s necessary, that’s just what my gut is telling me.  The US, as the primary force of the Allied side, needs to be unrestricted in it’s ability to deploy on either front as necessary in response to whatever the Axis’s opening moves are.  To me, restricting that is a far more drastic change than an extra 4 inf for Japan, whose presence would only really be felt if the US was spending heavily in the Pacific anyway, as otherwise they would just be making an overwhelming Japanese starting advantage in Asia slightly more overwhelming.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Fine, even 15 IPC is 5 infantry being added, up front, with a massive head start. (they get to start where they would have ended up on round 4…)

    America is not too restricted to respond to what is happening.  Just because they spend a minimum of 16 IPC on the other side of the board does not mean suddenly they are going to lose every game!  Let’s call it what it is:  A minor adjustment to build placement.  It’s less impactful than a bid, it’s of just enough adjustment that it balances things out (namely, they cannot scramble over the W. USA fleet or E. USA fleet if they are built on the other map, but they can still get to the front of their choice that next round, just as if they had been built on that front the previous round.)

    From E. USA to can get through the Panama canal, boom, you’re on the map you wanted!
    From W. USA you can get to the Gulf of Mexico, boom, you’re on the map you wanted!
    From C. W. or E. USA you can get to the carriers built after 1 full carrier movement (less bonus from NB) and, boom, you are on the front you want.

    To get 5 infantry where Japan wants them they would have to:
    a)  Purchase them and place them.
    b)  Transport them to the mainland/move them one space on the mainland)
    c)  Move them one space on the mainland
    d)  Move into a defensive position on the mainland
    e)  Attack with them on the mainland.

    Seriously, requiring America to build 16 IPC on the otherside of the board, ONE MOVEMENT ORDER AWAY FROM THE OTHER is more unbalancing than tossing half a dozen extra infantry on the board for Japan?

    Instead of just arguing out of rote, perhaps think about what you are suggesting in contrast.  Many of you have claimed the allies will lose if America focuses on one side of the board, I count you all as supporters of the restricted American placement rule, as you obviously think it would be good for new players to have to abide by.  Those of you who have made suggestions such as adding more units to the game or increasing Japan’s income in some way I view as supporters as well, as my suggestion is significantly less game altering than any of those, however, in addition to supporting the change, you wish it would go further.

    Therefore, we have two camps:

    1)  Those who want no change and do not recommend that America ever split it’s build order until such time as one side is defeated.
    2)  Those who support splitting the American build in such a manner as they can still get their units to either side of the board, it just requires an itsy-bitsy bit more time to do so.

    Which camp are you in?  There are no 3rd options.

  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    For the record, I don’t mean to be accusatory, I literally want to find out if you are in the:

    1)  “Absolutely nothing should be done to the game camp”, or
    2)  “There exists a bias in the game that makes it harder for Japan to win than for America to win”, camp.

    Once we have a consensus on one or the other camps, we can look at the minutia of what to do.  I still hold that the option with the most insignificant impact on the game, that may work, is to require some of America’s builds to go on both halves of the map.  It’s the most insignificant because it is the most correctable by the American player.  It alters the base of the game because it gives Japan 1 or half a round’s head start.

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