One of my A&A friends gets frustrated by the randomness of attacks… H.R. help?

  • As the title says, one of my friends who I play Global 1940 with gets frustrated when his perfectly-orchestrated strategy falls apart due to bad luck (and to be fair, he can often be a pretty unlucky roller).

    I was wondering if there are any house rules that might reduce the randomness somehow. The only thing is that my friend would prefer not to play with house rules unless they really improve the play experience or are commonly used.

    One method I’ve been thinking about, for example, is having “Supply” / “Zeal” tokens that a player can spend, mid-battle, to turn any die roll into a “1” (after seeing the roll).  That way my friend can feel like he’s at least making a calculated decision about countering bad luck.

    I was thinking that nations accumulate these tokens during the Income phase, gaining perhaps 1 token for every 10 IPC of income… or something like that.  I haven’t thought of a great method for acquiring these tokens.

    What do you think?  Any input or ideas would be very appreciated!!!

  • Have you looked into using “low luck”?
    Or something I have used from time to time, called “less luck”

    Low Luck is widely used by the community and it is basically this.
    Treat the combat values of your units as points, and each time it adds up to 6, you get an automatic hit.
    The attack power of infantry is 1, therefore 6 infantry generate an automatic hit.
    Tanks hit at 3. Therefore 2 tanks generate an automatic hit.
    You total up all units together. So if you had 11 infantry, 1 artillery, 5 tanks, 2 fighters, and 2 bombers you would have:
    (10@1=10) (2@2=4) (7@3=21) (2@4=8)
    10+4+21+8 = 43

    Divide that number by 6 and that is how many automatic hits those units generate.
    43/6= 7 (remainder of 1)
    And you roll the remainder as if it was just one unit. (so you roll just one shot at one)
    Getting 7 automatic hits, and 1 roll of 1. So you either get 7 or 8 hits.

    That is low luck. It takes a lot of the randomness out of the game.

    Something similar, that I have tinkered with is called “less luck”. The community didn’t really take to it, but it is a twist on low luck.

    Calculate your low luck value just like before, however you subtract one of your automatic hits, and convert it back to units that you have in your force.
    For instance, with the example above of 11 INF, 1 ART, 5 TNK, 2 FGT, 2 BOM = 43
    One of your 7 automatic hits is subtracted (so now you only have 6 auto hits)
    And you convert that lost hit to any combination of rolls you could make that equals 6 (and your remainder)

    So you can roll your two fighters to replace the converted hit (3+3=6)
    You can roll a bomber and an artillery (2+4=6)
    Or 6 infantry (1x6=6)
    Or 3 infantry and a tank (1+1+1+3=6)

    “less luck” still gives automatic hits. But increases the spread of hits/misses possible.
    With Low Luck, you are either getting 7 or 8 hits.
    With Less Luck, that same force can get as few as 6, and as many as 13 hits (if you choose to roll all infantry for your converted hit, and roll to hit on your remainder roll, which is extremely unlikely)

    Less Luck just increases the spread of possible hits. You will never get all hits or all misses. You will hover around the middle.

  • Very interesting!!!  I’ll suggest it to my friend and see what he thinks.  Thanks!

  • You know, how about instead of totaling up all of the attack points, what if you total up each “column”?

    This would be splitting the difference between normal and Low Luck, so to speak.

    What I mean is, say I’m attacking with…
    5 infantry @ 1
    3 tanks + 2 fighters @ 3
    2 bombers @4

    The 5 infantry would have to roll as normal. The @3’s have a combined power of 15, so they could choose to do 2 automatic hits or roll normally. Then the bombers have a combined power of 8, so they could do 1 automatic hit or roll normally.

    What do you think?

  • Another option I’ve heard about, but never tried, is that all units need a 1 to hit, but they get a number of rolls equal to their attack/defense value.  For instance, when attacking, infantry would roll one die each, unless paired with an artillery, in which case it would roll two dice.  Tanks would roll 3 dice, bombers and battleships would roll 4 dice, etc.

    The only issue is that, occasionally, you could end up with a single bomber or battleship killing 4 units.  Unless, of course, you say that no unit can have more than one hit produce a casualty in each round.  But that would require you to roll each unit one at a time, in order to keep track, which could be tedious in large battles.  I suppose you could solve this by using different colored dice.  For instance, if you have 3 tanks attacking, you could roll 3 red dice, 3 blue dice, and 3 white dice.  But if you roll three 1’s with the red dice, and no 1’s with the blue and white dice, you only score one hit.

  • Large battles would take 15 minutes if you rolled like that.
    Or you would need 100 dice.

  • Yeah, it would be a bit tedious.  I have an old game in my closet called Air and Armor, which I haven’t played in probably 20 years.  It has a combat system where the dice won’t really decide the winner or loser in a battle, if one side has a large firepower advantage.  In such a case, the dice will only determine the severity of the drubbing.  If both sides are more or less evenly matched, neither side is likely to take overwhelming losses.  I’ll dig it out and look at it when I get home.  I don’t think it could really be converted to A&A, but it might give me some ideas.

  • Customizer

    I’ve tried low luck and I didn’t like it. I actually the random chance of rolling dice. Yeah, I know it kind of puts a crimp in your strategy when you plan things out just right then get beaten by a lousy roll of the dice, but doesn’t that kind of happen in real war sometimes?
    Plus, it just seems a little more exciting to me. One time I rolled in an attack which included 5 infantry and I got FIVE 1s. I couldn’t believe that. However, I have seen times where I roll for 4 defending fighters and get a bunch of 5s and 6s. That sucks, unless you are the attacker.

  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    The best method I’ve ever used is MEDIUM Luck.

    Every time you have a chance to roll, you also have the right to decide.

    1.Do I want to Roll and go for chance? 
    2. OR Do I want the statistical average + a roll at whatever the remainder is?

    Both the defender and the attacker get to choose on/off throughout a battle, before each rolling round, and it makes things REALLY interesting.

    No one gets to whine about dice, because they had a CHOICE for the average, and if they got bad dice - they chose to gamble!

  • @AlphaKappa:

    As the title says, one of my friends who I play Global 1940 with gets frustrated when his perfectly-orchestrated strategy falls apart due to bad luck (and to be fair, he can often be a pretty unlucky roller).

    If his strategy is so perfectly orchestrated. why can’t he win with poor dice rolls?.. I mean it’s not like he’s only rolling 5’s and 6’s. I’ve been playing A&A since 93, and I can tell you that dice rolling is about attitude. In the past, I would throw my dice across the room and curse with an unsportsmanlike temper… needless to say, my attitude about luck has matured with an enlightened perspective. I now see bad luck as a challenge rather than a handicap.

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