How often are the Central Powers winning?



  • We played 2 games.  The first was wholly instructive (as in “Oh crap, this is REALLY not like the WWII A&A games” - we knew it wasn’t theoretically but only after actually playing a game did it sink in), so I won’t count that, but the CPs lost that one ignominiously.  The second game had to end early (time constraints - you can only play for so many hours), but even though Russia fell to revolution, the CPs had achieved it at a terrible cost (Austria had something like 6 pieces left total, including chips, Germany’s front was shattered and the French and British were charging into the heart of Germany, and the Ottomans only held Constantinople of their original territory).  The point is that the CPs lost both games.

    This leads me to ask how often they are winning in other games, i.e., is this game balanced?


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    You’ve played two games.

    I suggest playing a few more before asking the “is it balanced” question.



  • It looks to me that a German attack on the UK fleet round 1 is mandatory to set their economy back a little.



  • I feel like the Allies SHOULD win most games anyway given their geographic positions and (overall) stronger economies  (in the real war Germany used the term “Shackled to a Corpse” in

    describing its relationship with Austria-Hungary). The Central Powers should be more difficult to play as with victory coming primarily from early, overwhelming forces, some high risk operations

    and some lucky dice rolls. Once you lose momentum with the CP as with the Axis in Global 1940, you lose the war whereas the Allies can take a beating and recover from it. I once more

    matches are played and more war stories are told there will be a clearer picture as to whether the game is balance or not, but in my personal opinion it shouldn’t be a 50/50 win:lose ratio

    between the Allies and CP.



  • Balancing the game based on chances in the real war would be terrible game design. It’s a game first and a historical simulation second, both players should have as close to an even chance as possible.


  • Customizer

    I’ll say it again - the Central Powers are crippled by the unhistorically slow movement over land to reinforce their fronts when they get close to Paris and Rome.

    If the Allies are clever enough to use a UK transport fleet to shuck troops into Picardy/Belgium and Karelia alternately even Russia shouldn’t fall.

    I suspect that the majority of CP victories were resignations by Allied players who did not appreciate how difficult it is for the CPs to press home an advantage and actually take western capitals when the Americans start sending over troops.



  • @Flashman:

    I’ll say it again - the Central Powers are crippled by the unhistorically slow movement over land to reinforce their fronts when they get close to Paris and Rome.

    I don’t really follow this.  The initial setup has troops in every territory between Berlin and the western front.  The Germans will have new troops entering the front every turn.  You may have a gap if you redirect troops east rather than west, so the real disadvantage is that Germany and Austria are both fighting two fronts.



  • @Texas:

    @Flashman:

    I’ll say it again - the Central Powers are crippled by the unhistorically slow movement over land to reinforce their fronts when they get close to Paris and Rome.

    I don’t really follow this.  The initial setup has troops in every territory between Berlin and the western front.  The Germans will have new troops entering the front every turn.  You may have a gap if you redirect troops east rather than west, so the real disadvantage is that Germany and Austria are both fighting two fronts.

    Flashman wants to bring 90% of the CP forces to the front in one turn so he can get land superiority wherever/whenever he wants.  I tend to agree with you, each front theoretically gets reinforcements each turn.



  • @Gargantua:

    You’ve played two games.

    I suggest playing a few more before asking the “is it balanced” question.

    No, the whole point was to ask other people to get an idea - if you don’t want to answer, that’s fine, but I am going to ask the questions I want to.



  • @Flashman:

    I’ll say it again - the Central Powers are crippled by the unhistorically slow movement over land to reinforce their fronts when they get close to Paris and Rome.

    If the Allies are clever enough to use a UK transport fleet to shuck troops into Picardy/Belgium and Karelia alternately even Russia shouldn’t fall.

    I suspect that the majority of CP victories were resignations by Allied players who did not appreciate how difficult it is for the CPs to press home an advantage and actually take western capitals when the Americans start sending over troops.

    That is exactly what I found.  I played the CPs in the first game and tried to be ultra-aggressive to see what I could do to take 2 capitals.  The Austrians took Venice and Romania flat out and only 1 troop was left in Serbia, the Ottomans attacked into Sevastopol, the Germans hit Poland and all along the West Front (including Switzerland) and destroyed the British Navy completely, but we ran out of reinforcements.  Ultimately, the Russians ended up taking Galicia with a huge force of about 20 infantry and 8 artillery and two airplanes, and the Austrians had nothing capable of stopping them, and the French ripped a hole in the German front.


  • Customizer

    G & A are left with a perpetual dilemma; attack now, or wait a turn for the next batch of reinforcement to march in; then wait another turn for the next batch and so on.
    Because the Allies can usually reinforce by sea they can do so much faster and build up a decisive advantage before the CPs ever can. It is a race the Allies should always win.



  • I think to speed up German troop movements, and rather then try to introduce a new set of rules for rail movement (because if Germany is allowed to do it then all nations must be allowed to do it and that could make things even worse), treat the Munich territory as a second capitol with deployment limited to 4 units (as it is worth 4IPC) or treat it like a minor neutral and allow it to mobilize double it’s IPC value, so 8 units or something simple like that.

    I’m inclined to think (and willing to test out first) allowing Munich to mobilize 4 units a turn as this small infusion of troops each turn would be enough to hold up any allied advance and allow Germany greater hitting power when the bigger troop concentrations from Berlin finally get into play. I hesitate making it 8 units as I feel that would be over powering and render Berlin kinda redundant.



  • Why are so many players here so obsessed with Munich? You realize it’s WWI we are talking here, right? 😉
    If new rules allowed Germany a second production option it ought to be Ruhr! Krupp was located there.
    In fact, Germany could even be allowed to build more units there than in Berlin!
    Munich, ridiculous!



  • Flashman is right. I am currently at the gates of Paris. Have troops in Picardy, and burgundy. However the bulk of my men are in Munich and Ruhr. It will be 2 turns until I get them there. Meanwhile the USA is going to land a solid 12 troops into Picardy, Belgium or Piedmont.



  • What do you guys think solves the problem more? Another entry point for German units? More German naval units? More German land units?



  • Not  necessarily so!
    It is ONE suggestion, no more, no less.
    Personally I doubt that solution to be implemented officially as it is far from existing A&A rules and A&A 1914 even is a very streamlined release.
    Rails on the other hand would be a totally new feaure.
    Thus, I assume, if it can be handled more (existing)A&A-like, it would be done that way.

    If you would have been allowed to produce in Ruhr from R1 as well, situation might be different already!


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13 Moderator

    @GoSanchez6:

    What do you guys think solves the problem more? Another entry point for German units? More German naval units? More German land units?

    i would say another entry point. Ruhr is my choice(sorry Munchen fans).



  • @xxstefanx:

    Why are so many players here so obsessed with Munich? You realize it’s WWI we are talking here, right? 😉
    If new rules allowed Germany a second production option it ought to be Ruhr! Krupp was located there.
    In fact, Germany could even be allowed to build more units there than in Berlin!
    Munich, ridiculous!

    Yes, I am well aware of the history, but sometimes history has to take a back seat to functionality of game play.

    Here is the problem I keep running into as Germany, by turn 4 my armies have battered their way into France, but then I run out of Troops at the front. It’s not that I don’t have them, but their slow march towards the front hinders progress. Troops moved from Berlin will take 3 turns to reach Belgium and 4 turns to get into France proper and given that Germany is fighting under the sword of Damocles that is the US entry into the war this seems like a needless and unfair disadvantage.

    If we are to attempt to redress this issue then it needs to be done in a way that will help Germany but not be so over powered as to make the game un-winnable (and therefore un-fun) for the allies. Allowing the Germans unlimited production in the Ruhr creates an insurmountable problem for the allies as troops produced here can be in Belgium in one turn and France proper in two. Germany would be able to steamroll France before America could get into the game.

    Allowing a limited production in Munich allows Germany to keep a steady flow of troops into France in a more timely manor and truly bog things down. Munich will also still allow for a slight delay in these troops arrival to front that the Ruhr would not afford and still allow the allies time to attempt to counter them.

    I more then understand the historical imperative of allowing the Germans to produce troops in the Ruhr but I believe that it will unbalance the game to an unplayable degree. Understand that I am a huge fan of the history this game is representing (I was the guy willing to decry the game for historical inaccuracies when I first heard about it) and 90% of the time would be part of the “must be historically accurate” chorus, but this time I believe it must take a back seat to functionality.



  • What if you simply delay American entry into the war, to say turn 6?  Would that help the CP cause enough?



  • We’re starting turn 7 (I think) and are using the Russian Rev rules. As the CP I pushed pretty hard at the Russian front with all 3 CPs, as I attempted to dig in on French & Italian soil (def stand). By the 3rd turn it was evident I would be giving up ground to the western allies, so I started to fall back one territory at a time on that front (just about backed up to Berlin now).

    The Russians kept backing up as they typically do, to where Germany controlled Belarus w32 units+3 ftrs (w/2 more in range). The A/H controlled Ukraine w/35 units+2 ftrs. The Russians not fully understanding how the Rus Rev Rules worked, along with not being able to launch attacks from contested land into enemy controlled territories (we all were somewhat confused here in our first game) had 60units+4ftrs on Moscow. He gave up just about everything else.

    As the CP on the start of the 4th turn I attempted to contest Moscow by smashing my A/H’s (36 units) into the wall of Russians (64 units) in Moscow. If I could survive with just one unit he would be forced into revolution because w/Moscow contested he wouldn’t be able to launch attacks into the 3-4 adjacent Russian territories that I was in full control of. It wouldn’t really matter how many hits I got (although I rolled pretty good and killed 20 units including 2 of his ftrs), it was all about if he could kill all 36 of my units in the one round battle.  Well he obviously got air support (4 vs 2 in dog fight), and the battle I figured out w/Russian air support to be 50/50 for him to kill all my units if he rolled for average, so what the hell I went for it. Needless to say he rolled a bit better then average (killed all my A/H units), and being Moscow didn’t end up contested he was able to then hit my German stack in Belarus and reduced it to like 12 units. I had some more A/H units that had just moved up though and was able to force the revolution fillally on turn 5 (same situation), but the damage was done by that point, and the western front is now collapsing back to Berlin.

    My German navy (2 bb, 2 crusers, 3 subs) is no match to the combined French/UK navy (4 bb’s 3-4 cruisers etc….plus the US is on their way). I have placed my navy off Kiel to make him smash through it though (one allied navy at a time). Well he took Kiel by land w/30+ french dudes, so now he can move UK in w/o worrying about mines, and doesn’t have to fight my navy if he doesn’t want to (can just share the sea zone). I’m not sure but I think he may be able to reinforce by sea now w/UK or France as the French hold Kiel w/o fighting through my navy (will need to look that up lol).

    Edit: Looked it up when I got home, he does have to clear the sea zone before he can reinforce Kiel via transports (rewind). That’s what happens when you’re playing at 4 AM 😮

    I’m not tossing in the towel just yet, I’ll have over 60units +6 ftrs in Berlin by time he attacks it (I’ll probably get air support vs France if he mans up and attacks me) Maybe I can start pushing him back at some point if he doesn’t, but it doesn’t look to good. The Uk spent a lot of income turn 5-6 in India to get my Turks under control (they are an unruly bunch), but still hold most of ntheir income (but it will start to fall quickly now). Whats left of A/H are in a death mach w/Italy on my land, and the US is getting into the Med. Yeah we’ll see what happens in the next two turns, then may call it.

    This was our fist game though, and many mistakes were maid, plus some of the rules are changing so I can’t say the CP are doomed. We will switch sides/partners now and see what happens now that we kinda have a grasp on how the game plays. Still seems like an uphill battle for the CP not getting units where they need to, and the naval dominance the allies have is hard to over come when they can move units by sea pretty easily. I will say that forcing the revolution wasn’t easy (cost me a lot of units). If I had to take Moscow though it would have cost more because he still had 20 units trapped once the revolution happened. The def rolling all 3’s really hurts lol.



  • I’m starting to think the best plan is to hold Poland, Galacia, and Romania in the East and push west first before the British and Americans can get significant forces in France/Italy.

    Essentially, Germany supports Poland/Galicia, Austria supports Galacia/Romania and Ottoman supports Romania.  Have Ottoman defend as best it can to force British purchases in India (Not much the Ottoman can do).  How many forces per turn would you need to supply the three eastern territories (keep them contested) probably depends on where Russia focuses, but shouldn’t be more than a couple Inf/turn.  Especially so if Russia retreats early thinking he will be ganged up on only to find out he’s just being penned in.  Perhaps the Ottoman can stack Mesopotamia early to force Russian defenses in Sevastopol.

    If by doing this the CP’s still cannot take Paris then I think some balancing is required- I mean the full thrust of the CP’s are going towards France/Italy at this point.



  • With no diversion into Italy Germany should - at least - 50/50 be able to win with a full G/A-H thrust on France early on!
    (like all out India Crush in old Pacific!)
    Germany should as well be able to win by gaining considerable additional income in the east forcing Russia out of the game and then swing full industrial and troop power to the west.

    As an increased submarine warfare is not possible due to the lack of economic damage the submarines can do it boils down on those 2 strategies.

    If neither can be successful then there is a balance problem!

    P.S.: Did I already mention that the French Dreadnought at the Western Coast of France ought to be a Cruiser? 😄



  • @xxstefanx:

    With no diversion into Italy Germany should - at least - 50/50 be able to win with a full G/A-H thrust on France early on!
    (like all out India Crush in old Pacific!)
    Germany should as well be able to win by gaining considerable additional income in the east forcing Russia out of the game and then swing full industrial and troop power to the west.

    As an increased submarine warfare is not possible due to the lack of economic damage the submarines can do it boils down on those 2 strategies.

    If neither can be successful then there is a balance problem!

    P.S.: Did I already mention that the French Dreadnought at the Western Coast of France ought to be a Cruiser? 😄

    A slight variation could be to hit Switzerland as many have prescribed and take Italy out first, but without more play tests, and the rules being in ‘flux’ it is hard to know for sure.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13 Moderator

    Maybe Allied Navy needs to be shaved a bit. Cannot remember the starting numbers, but by T1 end I was 31-10 down. Might have been 9 battleships to 2.
    That is an enormous advantage, as Navy is the quickest way to move in this game and the most flexible arm of the military with its countless directional possibilities.
    In my game I had no fleet by T4 and I had bought 5more( 4 Subs admittedly).



  • @BJCard:

    @xxstefanx:

    With no diversion into Italy Germany should - at least - 50/50 be able to win with a full G/A-H thrust on France early on!
    (like all out India Crush in old Pacific!)
    Germany should as well be able to win by gaining considerable additional income in the east forcing Russia out of the game and then swing full industrial and troop power to the west.

    As an increased submarine warfare is not possible due to the lack of economic damage the submarines can do it boils down on those 2 strategies.

    If neither can be successful then there is a balance problem!

    P.S.: Did I already mention that the French Dreadnought at the Western Coast of France ought to be a Cruiser? 😄

    A slight variation could be to hit Switzerland as many have prescribed and take Italy out first, but without more play tests, and the rules being in ‘flux’ it is hard to know for sure.

    Correct!
    But personally I refuse it out of protest!
    Switzerland ought to be impassable - end of story!
    If the CP tend to choose taking out Italy first - fine - but not via Switzerland!


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