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Imperialism 1885-A&A Global variant setup?



  • I, being fascinated by the age of Imperialism am working on a variant setup for the 1940 boards (IPC will be adjusted) that allows the Colonial Empires of the world to fight it out to make their empire the finest.

    Empires of this time period who were considered were:

    Asian: Japan, Ottoman, Russian
    European: UK, France, Belgium, Dutch, Austrian, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
    America: USA

    China was ignored and I will decide control based on the spheres of influence.

    This was far too many to have any game, and also, The Spanish player would be severely bummed. So my plan now is to combine some down to preferably 7-8 players, I immediately combined Belgium and the the Netherlands

    AS A NOTE: I very much want weak and strong powers, for the sake of wheeling and dealing, alliance and betrtayal, etc.
                      I also want Japan and the Benelux to keep their sovereignty

    To do list:
    Combine Nations
    Revalue Territories
    Design Unit Changes
    Devise Setup
    Test

    All help appreciated



  • What do you think of combining Portugal and Spain



  • I agree with that, but is it enough?

    Side note-To make the game more exciting, I plan on using mainly 1885, with minor changes such as accelerating the Japanese to 1910, when they were touting an strong and growing empire.



  • @Croesus:

    I agree with that, but is it enough?

    Side note-To make the game more exciting, I plan on using mainly 1885, with minor changes such as accelerating the Japanese to 1910, when they were touting an strong and growing empire.

    I know it isn’t enought but I don’t know which nations to combine more


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    This is just a rough idea, not a fully-developed concept, but one thing which you could consider when deciding how to divide the imperial powers among the players is the type of empire each power was.  For instance, you could consider the powers as falling into these three or four categories:

    • Imperial powers (like Britain and France) having large overseas colonial holdings.

    • [Optional category] Imperial powers having an intermediate level of overseas colonial holdings, in terms of both number and size (which would depend on the time period in which the game is set).

    • Imperial powers having relatively minor overseas colonial holdings, in terms of both number and size (which would depend on the time period in which the game is set).

    • Imperial powers which don’t actually have overseas colonial holdings, but rather which consist of a large contiguous area of territory encompassing many national / ethnic regions under the control of a single ruler.  Off the top of my head, I think Ottoman Turkey, Russia and Austria-Hungary would fall into that category (and possibly even China, depending on how you interpret its situation).

    One effect of using such a division is that it would reflect how much importance a given power should allocate to developing its navy as opposed to its army, or vice-versa.

    Another way of dividing the imperial powers might be to contrast the ones which were on the rise at the time in which your game is set, those that were coasting along, and those that were in decline.  This could help determine what the national objective of each power is.  Paul Kennedy’s book The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict From 1500 to 2000 might give you some ideas along those lines.



  • My Current Empire Combos Are

    Southern Europe: Ottoman, Austrian, Spanish, Portuguese
    German: German
    Benelux: Belgium, Netherlands
    Russia: Russia (1860 Empire)
    Franco-Italian: France, Italian
    Japanese: Japan (1910 Empire)
    America: USA (No Alaska)
    British:British



  • @Croesus:

    My Current Empire Combos Are

    Southern Europe: Ottoman, Austrian, Spanish, Portuguese
    German: German
    Benelux: Belgium, Netherlands
    Russia: Russia (1860 Empire)
    Franco-Italian: France, Italian
    Japanese: Japan (1910 Empire)
    America: USA (No Alaska)
    British:British

    Looks good for me



  • In an effort to beef the Dutch up  at home, I’m thinking about adding in the Danish Empire, which consisted of  Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and Greenland.



  • @Croesus:

    In an effort to beef the Dutch up  at home, I’m thinking about adding in the Danish Empire, which consisted of  Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and Greenland.

    Great idea, so how many nations we have now ?



  • I don’t understand some of the combos you made, the Belgians+ the Dutch okay but Italy ottoman Portugal Austria and Spain wtf they have nothing incomin and are far apart opposite sides of the med.



  • @i:

    I don’t understand some of the combos you made, the Belgians+ the Dutch okay but Italy ottoman Portugal Austria and Spain wtf they have nothing incomin and are far apart opposite sides of the med.

    I agree but we are making way too many nations



  • At best I would say “south Europe” nation should be split into
    Faction 1 Spain/Portugal
    Faction 2 Italy
    Faction 3 ottoman empire.
    And add Austria to Germany



  • @i:

    At best I would say “south Europe” nation should be split into
    Faction 1 Spain/Portugal
    Faction 2 Italy
    Faction 3 ottoman empire.
    And add Austria to Germany

    Austria to Germany is a great idea



  • Now that I think about it maybe putting Italy with Germany and Austria could be a good idea and call them the central powers. Now theottomans though I have no idea on what to do with them.


  • Sponsor 2017 TripleA '11 '10

    How about:

    Southern Europe: Ottoman
    Austro-German: Germany, Austria
    Italy:
    Russia: Russia (1860 Empire)
    Franco-Belgian: France, Belgium, Netherlands
    Japanese: Japan (1910 Empire)
    America: USA (No Alaska)
    British:British

    I don’t really see the Spanish and Portuguese as options for this time period. Their empires had been decimated from the Napoleonic Wars, right?



  • The Spanish fought in the Spanish American war so some how I think they should be In. But unless they get an ipc bump Spain would only make 6 ipcs (2 for Spain 3 for the philippines  and 1 for the west indies). So I gave them Portugal cause that would give 3 more ipcs (1 for each Portugal angola and Mozambique).



  • here is a pic of the major powers 1898 couldnt find one earler.

    1898_map_world_empires_colonies_territory[1].png



  • @Croesus:

    My Current Empire Combos Are

    Southern Europe: Ottoman, Austrian, Spanish, Portuguese
    German: German
    Benelux: Belgium, Netherlands
    Russia: Russia (1860 Empire)
    Franco-Italian: France, Italian
    Japanese: Japan (1910 Empire)
    America: USA (No Alaska)
    British:British

    OK, to start with, I think this is an awesome idea.  One existing but oop game you should try to pick up as a source of inspiration and to mine for pieces/ components is the Eagle game War! Age of Imperialism  It has a beautiful board, mediocre (sculpting-wise) pieces that include pretty much everything you’d need, and some ideas.  It’s combat system needs work, though.  (I always thought that the biggest mistake Eagle made was departing too much from the basic A&A combat system) but it has an interesting exploration/ resources system that could at least be mined for ideas and components.  (Lots of turn-over resource pieces…)

    I think you’re best off deciding right off from the start whether you’re going “roughly historical” or “alternate reality.”  If you go AH you could maybe create a built-in balance that reality doesn’t give as an option, and you could have something like a “Central Reich” (Austria+Germany) a Tsarist Empire, an Islamic caliphate (or 2), and 1 or 2 “oriental empires” along with a limited # of Western powers all finely balanced.  Once you go all the way to an AH approach, you don’t have to worry so much about your various contenders being ahistorical, and build them however you want, with game balance a key concern… but you should then make sure to rename the contenders to make clear that you’re going AH to head off criticism of being too ahistorical.

    If you go historical, I think you’re better off going all the way in that direction and not messing too much with the basic list of “players” in terms of core territories, but allow the colonial situation in places like Africa and South Asia to be wide open.  (This is the basic approach taken by the Eagle Games W!AoI  This allows for a completely different kind of balance:  core territories are set and basically historical, but the historical “Scramble” for colonies could happen without limitations, much like how A&A starts with one of several sets of start dates, after which “all bets are off.”  (Remember, many of these “traditional” colonial empires were not at all traditional if you go back to 1885… and the further back you go, the less such boundaries actually existed…")  If you go with a more historical “Scramble Redux” approach, the lesser powers could be folded into the “neutrals” and/or “minors” category, along the lines of how the advanced A&A variants discussed in other threads of this forum are done.

    But say, combining Germany and Austria or the Benelux countries would cause you to lose historical flavor, so do it only if you’re going to rename them and be fully AH in approach.

    I’d also say that combining Catholic Monarchies with Orthodox Tsardoms and/ or Islamic Sultanates in the East or Republics and/or monarchies (e.g. Italy + France) that include radically different nationalities in the West would just not work well, so if you really feel the need to do this sort of radical combining, take the full-fledged AH route.



  • Oh, btw, you should go with red as the British color and the “Tsar’s Green” (dark green) for Russia (these were their traditional uniform colors until subdued colors became the fashion in the decade before WW1)  Blue is good for France, Black works for Germany (since France should stay blue), and probably grey or white for Austria and tan for the Ottomans.  The US was also blue and Italy tended toward white, blue or green, so if they are included… I’m not sure.  Japan also did the typical European thing after the 1867 Meiji Restoration, with white “summer” and blue “winter” uniforms, so I’m not sure about them either…  There’s a good argument for excluding the US and/or Japan (W!AoI only included the Eastern Hemisphere on its map, so if you start with Eagle components you’d start without the US anyway for a variety of reasons you can find in their game manual.)

    If you do the roughly historical “Scramble Redux” approach and start a little earlier, you could make a good case for making Japan, like China, a somewhat passive actor… with a potential to become a player if they get their act together quickly as they did.  (Japan’s almost miraculous rise from a nation of swashbuckling samurai to rival colonial power is often unappreciated and taken for granted in the West; if you go back to 1858, Japan has little obvious advantage in this regard over China aside from being smaller and more isolated.  On the other hand, if you go back that far, there’s no such thing as Germany or Italy…  Maybe a post-Franco-Prussian War 1871 would be an ideal starting point; it has the additional advantage of giving you the all-time simplest map of Europe to play with.)

    But, yeah, I agree that an Austrian/ Ottoman/ Iberian combo would be an absurdity and not even that great of a game combo, as Iberia is so widely separated from the others.  Combining Catholic and Islamic archrivals doesn’t work, either, and even merging the houses of Boubon (Spain), Braganza (Portugal, a traditional British ally), and Hapsburg (Austria) would be very odd, historically.  Benelux plus Denmark is also odd (and discontiguous)… bettery to combine the Nordic countries, who had their differencences, but at least are a coherent group geographically…  Finand/ Karelia/ Estonia could be an interesting Nordic/ Russian buffer zone, and Poland/Lithuania/Latvia could be an interesting Germany/ Russian buffer zone.  With Germany/Nordic empire/ Russia in the north and Austria/ Russia/ Ottomans in the south you could have two interesting and overlapping triangular rivalries going on at the same time.



  • @i:

    Now that I think about it maybe putting Italy with Germany and Austria could be a good idea and call them the central powers.

    Italy was neutral until 1915, when they joined the Allies



  • Eagle Games basically did this with their War: Age of Imperialism game, which is not longer available.  They still sell the miniatures for the game however, and there is a computer version that they still might have available.  I have to see how many of the computer games I still have.

    For the basic game, they have the British, France, Germany, Japan, and Russia.  I have added what I call the Lesser European states: Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, and Italy as one group for simplicity of play.  You could have Spain and Portugal together, the Netherlands with it East Indies colonies, and the Italians with a desire to expand into Africa as separate powers as well. The main problem is right now, they have only 6 colors for units, so that limits the game to 6 players.  Pieces are nice and you also get native infantry modeled after the Zulus and native cavalry modeled after the Central Asia mounted fighters.  Building are city modeled after the Great Zimbawea, a factory, school, nice steam engine, and a fort.

    I have a copy of the game, and I am thinking about expanding it to the New World by using the combined Attack and Attack Expansion boards.  They do not have either the resource or native level markers available, which is unfortunate, as I have already checked.  It was a nice game, and it would be good to get back into production.  We have a lot of fun with it in our summer game program.  The students really like it.



  • I’m starting setup with the following nations

    RUSSIA Capitol: Moscow

    TRIPLE ALLIANCE (Italy, Germany, und Austria) Capitol: Berlin

    OTTOMAN Capitol: Ankara, Turkey

    IBERIAN ALLIANCE (Spain i Portugal) Capitol: Madrid, Spain

    BRITAIN Capitol:London

    USA Capitol: Washington

    JAPAN Capitol:Tokyo

    BENELUX ALLIANCE (France, Netherlands, and Belgium) Capitol: Paris



  • i like those picks, also how would china be implemented, would they be in like global 1940 or would they have the ability to get better weapons?



  • China will be divivded among great powers as it was under the “spheres of influence” before the open door policy


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