My friend and I played with the new tournament rules and we generally like the new economic and political collapse scenarios. However, we also found that it was making the game a bit absurd. Italy, instead of protecting itself more, landed troops in Ankara (the Turkish navy was gone and the French navy was sitting in the territory, and the British and French had both failed in landings due to mines) because it was enough to push the Turks into total collapse on Turn 3.
These sorts of moves became common, too, because nations couldn’t do anything on their own turn to stop the collapses. Italy and Russia both collapsed on Turn 5, but by then Austria and Germany were almost out of troops and the French had a massive army moving East, and England was a monster collecting 65 IPCs each turn and churning out armies in India to move to the Balkans. The new strategic movement rules made it easier to shuttle those troops north.
We were unclear on whether the 2-space movement could be used to reinforce contested territories and so we didn’t allow it. I think if we had the game would have been completely ridiculous.
Anyway, our conclusion was that real strategies were being forfeited in order to force collapses in ways that made a mockery of anything approaching something mildly historic. In other words, the game was becoming as silly as the old 1983 MB version of A&A could get, with massive stacks in weird places and huge stretches of empty board.
We would propose, after playing with the new rules, the following change to the collapse rules (which are still much better than the Russian Revolution rules in the rulebook): at the beginning of the turn, check for collapse. An economic collapse or greater means that the nation doesn’t get to spend its money. It then has its turn to try to avert the crisis. If it fails, at the end of the turn it suffers the consequences. Example: Italy has only Naples with Rome contested. If it relieves Rome, it stays in the game but doesn’t collect money because at the end of the turn it’s still in economic collapse. If the US liberates Piedmont, on Italy’s next turn it can buy units because it is no longer in any sort of collapse at the beginning of its turn.
This seems to be a better way of making the game more interesting while not letting the collapse rules turn the game into a total farce.
As an aside, I will say that I am glad I bought a second copy of the game because we would have run out of pieces and markers otherwise.