AA 1914- WW1 ANNOUNCED!!!


  • Right from the man himself.  This is very cool.  Just when I thought it couldn’t get better!!! 😄

    http://www.harrisgamedesign.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=10635

  • Moderator 2022 2021 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 '13 '12

    Well spotted Questioneer. I have not been on his site for 2 weeks, as my phone has logged me off for the 3rd time and I have forgotten my password again!
    No details yet, I see. Does Larry usually announce things like that?


  • Yes, he’s done it before.  I’ve been very busy lately with my new job and now its starting to level off…so I just happened to log on and there it was.

    He did this for the several of his games.  When he announces on his site then that means that WOTC has given him the permission to talk about it.  He may not be able to give out pics for a while yet though.  Sounds like the product is finished already so I would expect this game to come out around May 2013 in that case.

    People have wanted this for a long time and he has taken suggestions for the game for over 3-4 years I believe, so its a good thing to see it happen.  Very cool.

  • Moderator 2022 2021 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 '13 '12

    I see. He gets people talking about it(slobbering over it) and then releases details later. Good idea! I am going to have to start swatting up  on WW1 now.
    Just as my interest in WW2 has been piqued again since being on here(Jan this year), I have to learn more about another conflict!
    Life’s hard.
    Hope you find time to play and  post more here again.

  • '17 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Axis & Allies 1914

    Designer Notes
    This is not World War II. Progress is/was measured by yards, not miles. The Italians were on the Allies side. Turkey, then at the center of the Ottoman Empire, was one of the members of what was known as the Central Powers. Imperial Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire were the two other main Central Powers. The major Allies, sometimes referred to as the Entente, but which I prefer to simply call the Allies, consisted of the British Empire, France, Italy, the United States, and Imperial Russia. There were other historical members of the alliance, but they more or less fell under the command and control of one of these great powers. Had General Pershing not insisted that its integrity be maintained, even the American army would have found itself as simply being replacements for French and British.

    I’m a World War II buff…always have been and always will be. World War I was something that was somehow not as interesting or exciting as World War II. It was, if anything, only the prelude to the “real” war that followed some 20 short years later. Other than rumors of my mother’s father – so he’d be my Grandfather – being gassed while “over there”, I had no real personal attachments to the war. It seemed to me that all the main historical characters walked around with swords and feathers on their really fancy hats and helmets. The political relationships between the various countries seemed confusing and complicated. The idea of trench warfare was interesting, but frankly it seemed that the commanders must simply have been inept and lacking any imagination on how to conduct a war. It seemed that the entire thing was conducted by lesser men than could be found during the Second World War. Later, as I became more informed, I developed a new appreciation and better understanding of what this war was really about and why it happened as it did. I became intrigued by the strength of the demonstrated human spirit that manifested itself on the many battlefields of this war that was to be called “the war to end all wars”.

    I communicate to others by way of games – it’s what I do. My task was to design a game that captured the magnitude and feel of this unique struggle. It was with that in mind that I designed this game. We are indeed high up in the air looking down. The words “gas attack” or “trench foot” are nowhere to be found in the rules. Such specific details had to be passed over if the greater aspects of the war were to be incorporated into the game. The core unit types in this game are infantry and artillery units. Tanks and aircraft, new to war, are also represented, but in a reduced way when compared to other Axis & Allies games. As I became more aware of the history of this war, it became clear to me that it was above all else a war of infantry and artillery – thousands of infantry and artillery. I leave it to you to imagine the use of poison gases and cavalry units that eventually had to get off their horses and man the trenches, the primitive form of aerial bombardment made by Zeppelins, and even the impact of machine guns that killed by the thousands. They are all there, but you can’t see them from your vantage point. You don’t have to in order to understand this tragedy of human history.

    I’ve visited many of the battlefields of Europe. Although all of them were fascinating in their ways, the two that linger in my mind are the beaches of Normandy where the D-Day invasion occurred in World War II and the World War I battlefield of Verdun. Normandy conjures up thoughts of bravery and the triumph over tyranny. It was the opening of the door that eventually led to the liberation of Europe. My memories of my visit are those of a beautiful coastline that quickly becomes the most beautiful collection of rolling hills and lush farm lands. Just off the coast is the American cemetery. As tragic as it is to see some 10,000 graves, it remains somehow possible to walk among the perfectly aligned tombstones and still be able to assign colors and even light to the memories of the visit. You can’t help but to be proud of your country and the soldiers, sailors, and airmen that made the ultimate sacrifice on this very spot. They lift you up - and being lifted up in this way feels good.

    Verdun is different. It’s dark and dreary. No positive emotions are derived from this place. It was part of a meat grinder that eliminated a generation of European youth. This battle alone entailed the deaths of almost a million, primarily French and German, soldiers. Meat grinder? What else could you call something or some place that experienced 40 million exploding artillery shells that churned up the earth and continues to scar it until this day, almost a hundred years later. That’s when it dawns on you. Verdun, as large a battle as it was, is but one of many World War I battlefields throughout Europe, Africa, and the Middle-East. To mention but one other, I suggest you read up on The Battle of the Somme, where the British army alone suffered 60,000 casualties in one day These were places where men found themselves exposed to the full impact of monstrous machines of war which no one, especially the generals, understood. The world was out of whack. The weapons of modern warfare were being introduced during each passing day. All too often, new and frighteningly efficient ways of killing were finding their way to the battlefields, but standard military strategy and tactics couldn’t keep up with the new technologies. This resulted in staggering casualty counts on both sides.

    It is my hope that while playing this game you develop a better idea and insight into this particularly nasty war. I hope it helps you better grasp the amazing range and scope of the nations, the alliances, and the problems experienced by commanders of the time. I hope you get a feel for what it must have been like to move hundreds of thousands of troops into vital strategic locations only to again move hundreds of thousands more into the same contested battlefield to replace the staggering number of casualties.

    While playing this game you will quickly realize that this is not World War II. There are no massive sweeps across continents with blitzing armored divisions and aircraft. Instead, there are a series of determined offensives resisted by equally determined armies dedicated to holding the line. You will find that your depleting resources of men and artillery must be deployed with great thought and efficiency. You will be fighting pretty much the way man has been fighting with each other for thousands of years… only this time the ability to kill your enemy, and for him to kill you, has become intolerably efficient. If you want to better understand World War II, you have to totally understand the war that set the stage for it. I love this game. I like the way it plays. For a game that has no sweeping conquest of vast territories, it sure moves fast and easy. It helped me to better understand what so many went through during what seems a short hundred years ago.

    Larry Harris

  • '10

    Excellent News!

  • Customizer

    Wow… this is exciting!

  • TripleA '12

    Fantastic stuff, I’ll be buying this!  🙂


  • :woot:


  • I want my toys-in-a-box. I hope they have little plastic toys for this game. I would really like to have seen little Zeppelins. Sounds like no-go.

    Not sure why they would remove things like gas attack from gameplay. I can understand the extremity of it, but it was such an integral part of the warfare.


  • Well this is basically the single greatest news ever. I am freaking out. Except now I have to wait  😢


  • I have spent the last year and a half working on a board game based around The Great War. I have a map drawn up, rules typed up, and have spent hours play testing the setup and various other rules.  I was hoping to get this game published with in the next year or so. Seeing this announcement brings that dream to an end. The Great War had always been an intensely interesting period of history for me and I have read a mountain of historical works on the subject. I hope that Mr. Harris dose a good job and doesn’t rely to heavily on his WW2 infatuation to create this game. I will more then likely buy a copy but will also likely be its harshest critic.


  • I’m going to ask Santa for this, … hopefully for 2012!!  Heh. :evil:


  • @Clyde85:

    I have spent the last year and a half working on a board game based around The Great War. I have a map drawn up, rules typed up, and have spent hours play testing the setup and various other rules.  I was hoping to get this game published with in the next year or so. Seeing this announcement brings that dream to an end. The Great War had always been an intensely interesting period of history for me and I have read a mountain of historical works on the subject. I hope that Mr. Harris dose a good job and doesn’t rely to heavily on his WW2 infatuation to create this game. I will more then likely buy a copy but will also likely be its harshest critic.

    Lol hey I’ve been tinkering with my own WW1 board game as well, yeah I understand, I’m kinda saddened by this lol. I mean I’m sure it will be fun, but I don’t think this game is going to fully satisfy my expectations…especially the “no gas” thing.


  • @Clyde85:

    I have spent the last year and a half working on a board game based around The Great War. I have a map drawn up, rules typed up, and have spent hours play testing the setup and various other rules.  I was hoping to get this game published with in the next year or so. Seeing this announcement brings that dream to an end. The Great War had always been an intensely interesting period of history for me and I have read a mountain of historical works on the subject. I hope that Mr. Harris dose a good job and doesn’t rely to heavily on his WW2 infatuation to create this game. I will more then likely buy a copy but will also likely be its harshest critic.

    There is room in the market for more than one game set in WW1. Look at the large amount of WW2 games there are out there. If something’s good - it’s good. Don’t go giving up; you may have done something quite different (or even better) than what Larry does…

    I don’t think this game is going to fully satisfy my expectations…especially the “no gas” thing.

    This is just one way in which your game might be different.


  • I have to agree.  I fear that without some of the features that made WWI a truly unique and devastating affair this has the potential to be a fairly bland experience.  One can only hope for the best.


  • Well, those of you who have strong opinions on the matter can always use the forums at Harris Game Design to talk to Larry.  He really loves the games and really likes the community involvement in these games.  Offer to play-test, send him ideas, and see if you can lend a hand to the man whose ideas and games have brought us so many late nights of triumph or defeat.  I’m looking forward to this.

  • '17 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    From Larry Harris

    What units are included???
    Infantry, artillery, tanks, fighters, submarines, battleships, cruisers, transports.

    D6 or D12?
    D6, but lots of them

    I suspect the usual suspects in the game:
    Germany
    Austria-Hungary
    Ottomans
    Russians
    UK
    France
    Italy
    USA
    Yes, and many minor powers

    Map size?
    I think it’s the same size as Europe 40

    Are the sculpts all the same except infantry, or you got two sets of sculpts one for allies and one for central powers?
    Each major power (eight of them) have their own infantry sculpts. Other sculpts are either allied or Central Power’s artillery, tanks or fight aircraft… and of course the naval lineup.

    Special rules for Russian Revolution and American entry?
    There are special Russian Revolution rules, as well as special American entry rules.

    Convoy zones?
    Not exactly… but there is an unrestricted submarine warfare moment during the Collect Income phase.

    Tech tree with at least 12 choices?
    No tech tree…

    will it be to AA42, AA41 or AA40 scale and complexity?
    If I understand this question correctly I’d say it’s just left (meaning easier than) of AA42.

    How many players will it be for and how many nations will be playable?
    This can be a 2 or 8 player game or any number in between.

    How will the Western Front be simulated in the game?
    I don’t want to get too deep into this. I will say, that there is only one round of combat dice rolling per turn per battle. The game, IMHO, feels very Western Front as you play it. It’s very cool and interesting how this system works and plays out. I like how it feels.

    And since this starts in 1914, I wonder how the nations that opted to stay neutral in the beginning will be played. Many minor powers are neutral initially, including the US, which if not attacked by the Central Powers will enter the war on turn 4.

    I also wonder what the nation colors will be…
    Particularly Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire.
    I think you will like the colors. Some of them are your standard colors and others are brand new. Germany will be grey.

    What’s the release date?
    March or April 2013

    The Map, will it be fully global or 2/3 global covering from Eastern US into the Middle East or maybe India. Will Anzac and India be represented as UK units entering the war through Egypt, or will there be a commonwealth unit? Will the map stretch to E US (US needs transports etc…), or will American units just enter through England, or embattled territories in Western Europe.

    The map will range from Calcutta to NYC and from the top of Norway to South Africa

    Having Turkey (Ottoman Empire) as one of the Central powers and not neutral is going to be very different, looking forward to that.

    Yeah… it’s a fun power to manage, but then again… they all are! Of course, as usual, its’ hard to resist the desire to play an aggressive Germany!


  • I see Cavalry is to to be out of the mix interesting as it played a big role on the Eastern front and in the Middle East. :?

  • '17 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    I know, and no rail-guns or Zeppelins. That sucks.


  • Yeah, no Cavalry, especailly if the game is supposed to start in 1914, is a little odd. I like how they function in the Triple A Great War mod, same attack and less defense stats as Inf. but a way to creat break throughs. I shall miss them. Also, still don’t understand the lack of gas. Zepplins and Rail-Guns i can live without but they would have been fun.

    Oh well, I’m just glad there will finally be a WW1 board game

  • 2021 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @Army:

    There is room in the market for more than one game set in WW1. Look at the large amount of WW2 games there are out there. If something’s good - it’s good. Don’t go giving up; you may have done something quite different (or even better) than what Larry does…

    I agree.  No game is ever definitive.  If Larry’s game isn’t as good as it could be, this creates an opportunity for someone else to create a better one.  If Larry’s game is as good as we all hope it will be, this creates an opportunity for someone else to create a “differently good” game that uses another approach.  WWI was a huge and complicated conflict, so there is a vast range of methods that can be used to translate it into a game.


  • Yeah, I would have loved to get Zeppelin units but I guess their role in World War I was so minor it doesn’t really fit the scale of the game.  Cavalry would have made sense… I wonder why it was left out.


  • Yeah, cavalry wouldn’t really make much sense on the Western front.  Even on the Eastern front, while they were tactically useful for scouting, raids, and cutting rail lines, it would be hard to represent them on the strategic level.  If they don’t move faster than infantry, then what’s the point?  If they do move faster than infantry, there is a danger players will build more of them than would be historically accurate, and they might become defacto blitzkrieg machines.

    The combat system that involves only one round of combat is interesting.  Given how it would tend to have the effect of preventing territories from changing hands quickly, it must somehow generate massive casualties.  Either that or the cost of new units must be relatively high compared the income available on the map.  If not, you’d end up with massive stacks of units in some of the key territories after a couple of turns.


  • @almashir:

    The combat system that involves only one round of combat is interesting.  Given how it would tend to have the effect of preventing territories from changing hands quickly, it must somehow generate massive casualties.

    I think that’s what Larry’s going for.

    At first I was imagining that the static nature of World War I would make for a somewhat uninteresting game… but on second thought, it might be a really tense if both sides are losing massive numbers all over the place. Although the battle fronts might not move very much, it sounds like they will be highly unstable.

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