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Territory Income Bonus: for Classic, Revised, 1941/42.2 etc


  • '14

    This is a general rule that is very easy to implement in most A&A games.

    It’s called The territory income Bonus or the Boost and it works like this…

    +1 ipc for each territory your nation controls at the start of your turn. It is added in during the purchase unit phase. Each player counts up all the spaces they control and announces the number. So like…

    “Russia +10” added to 24 in revised. Or “Russia +11” added to 24 in 1942.2
    “Germany +9” or “G+10” etc
    “UK +X”
    “Japan +Y”"
    “USA +Z”

    and so on. Very simple. Just count and add to the total, at the beginning of the turn. The counting is quick, it takes all of 10 seconds each turn. Just count the territories (markers or cardboard chips) and add. Easy rule, but adds quite a lot to the game.

    The rule is in place from the first round, and in effect for the duration of the game.

    Because this income is counted at the start of the turn, it has the effect of giving an incentive to attack and defend territory. Either to gain the +1 on the boost, or deny it to your opponent. Even territories with no value are now at least worth +1 on the boost (or -1 from your enemy, if you can take it before their turn). But the normal collect income rules apply as well, as normal, so the effect is not totally distorting, but just complements the mechanics already in play.

    Adds in a little more cash for everyone, to make unit purchasing more exciting, and breathes new life into the older maps.

    Limits somewhat the effect of sbr. Encourages more conflict across the board. Is just a lot of fun in general.

    options*

    VC boost: It is also possible to add in a boost for VCs, where any VC territory gives a total boost of +2 ipcs (one for the territory, and one for the city). Has the effect of making VCs more valuable, and more hotly contested.

    Capital Boost: there are a lot of different A&A games, and some are balanced in a more one-sided way at the start than others, at least as concerns total territories controlled. If there is a player/nation which starts in a dramatically nerfed position on a particular board, it is possible to include a base boost for the capital of that nation. For example, if Germany is in a particularly weak starting position on a particular A&A board, you could do a “Berlin boost” of +5, or +10 on top of the normal territory income boost. On the idea that G in the older games was designed to fold into just a tiny core, and then fight out of it. So as long as you hold the capital you get something for it, a modest amount added along with the normal boost, during the purchase units phase. Or you could do the same for Moscow, or perhaps Tokyo in some of the newer games. Giving you some flexibility to incorporate this with other house rules, or with National Objectives in the case of AA50. On the whole though the normal boost, and the VC boost do go a long way in balancing out across most maps. Everyone gets a boost, everyone has something to look forward to, and a reason to fight on to the last.

    Basically, the rule seems to hold up well in all the core A&A games I’ve tried so far, and most players I’ve gamed with seem to enjoy the effect it has on the play. A slightly higher economy, not too distorted relative to everything else, but just offering a bit more entertainment value in the overall conflict patterns.

    If anyone gets the chance to play using this rule, I would love to hear how it worked in your game


  • Customizer

    Interesting idea. To be honest, it sounds mostly like a way to get more pieces onto the board which would create bigger battles. Yeah, a lot of people would like that I think.

    Do you think it could be applied to Global 1940 too? I know that Capital bonus would sure help out little countries like Italy and ANZAC.


  • '14

    For anyone interested, in 1942 second edition, this rule will introduce a total of 70 ipcs into play, split up across the five nations (since there are a total of 70 territories on the board.)

    The boost income is collected at the beginning of the turn, each round, starting from the first. So the Soviet Union will collect +11 on their first boost, for a total of 35 ipcs (when added to normal income). Normal income is still collected at the end of the turn. So you can think of the boost as an extra phase, which starts the turn… with the boost money added to whatever normal income was collected the previous round, before the purchase units phase.

    Germany’s boost will thus depend on how many territories the Russians take in their first round, but basically they are up in the +13-15 range.

    This rule pushes everyone’s total income up in the opening round.
    Russia averages high 30s
    Germany mid 50s
    Britain mid 50s
    Japan mid 40s
    USA mid 50s

    Every round after the opening round, the boost tends to balance out based on who is controlling board and playing aggressively.

    As the game progresses Russia may begin to drop down into the low 30s. Germany may rise into the 60s or fall into 40s/30s depending on how aggressive they are, or how much the western allies focus on Europe. Japan will either rise into the 60s, or fall into the 40s/30s, depending on whether the Allies go heavy or not in the Pacific. If Allies go all one direction, the other Axis player can still collect heavy enough to make a run into the endgame. But the Allies also have an incentive now to drive in direction they never would before (to take valueless pacific islands for example) since every territory is now worth at least 1 on the boost.

    Britain and USA hover in the 50s or 40s base for most of the game, unless the Axis really chip away at their territory, e.g. by focusing on Africa and Australia, the Americas etc instead of full focus on Russia.

    Overall I find it balances quite well. I believe it is Sea Lion capable, but only at a considerable risk, and only on a double (2 round) invasion. If Germany drops all transports immediately, Britain can now afford to drop 8 tanks to counter with a UK stack, and USA/Russia can plan accordingly. So it is a two round commitment by G at the least, even if they go all out. The Atlantic is easier to manage, but a full KGF can see a Japanese monster with the boost, such that they can fight into the endgame. Alternatively full KJF allows Germany to go monster. So it kind of encourages the Allies to commit resources to both theaters. And it is surprising how just a few extra ipcs keeps Russia fighting. The balance feels to me like what I always wanted from A&A! A game where more money is distributed more evenly across the board, and more areas are contested. More people buy ships, more people fight over territories that usually get no play etc.

    Note: the boost does not influence production. Territory production, like normal income, is still based on the printed values on the map. But the cash bonus is often enough to make even low value territories much more attractive.

    Everyone gets a boost to look forward to, even if you’re down to just a few territories, you can still try to grab an extra inf unit or artillery piece from the boost. It also encourages simple board monitoring. Takes a few seconds to count the territories for the boost, but during that time you are more likely to scan the entire map. To see what moves you or your opponent may be developing (and decreasing the likelyhood of missing a move.) Plus it’s just awesome to have an extra couple ipcs to throw around. It makes more builds and new strategies possible, even on old boards. It doesn’t require any new unit set ups or bids or other adjustments to official A&A games. Pretty easy rule

    In short, I think it’s a fun way to adapt the game. Expect to use more chips and play a somewhat longer game. If you try it, let me know whether or not it was enjoyable. Best


  • Customizer

    I’m still curious if this would work for Global 40. I mean, counting territories is simple enough, but what about USA and USSR while they are still neutral? Would they get the territory boost or is it only for nations at war?


  • 2017 2016

    Don’t know if your idea keep the balance of the game (adding a lot on new IPCs).

    But the game mechanics used here open for me a whole new field to resolved the problem of “double dip” territory income. (A problem which is solved somehow in 1914 by creating contested territory.)

    Thanks.


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

    Following up on Baron’s “double dip” phrase, I’m wondering this about the proposed income bonus: what does it represent in terms of the game’s fictitious economic system?  In the OOB rules, each territory generates IPCs at a prescribed value which reflects how much economic importance (population, industrial base, raw materials, etc.) the territory has in the game’s behind-the-scenes economic model.  So each territory’s OOB IPC value represents the full economic output of which it is capable, and this value gets collected in full by whoever owns that territory.  In other words, in the OOB rules, ownership of territory affects who gets that territory’s IPCs but not the number of IPCs itself. What would be the rationale, therefore, for the number of IPCs increasing simply by virtue of the fact that the territory has a certain ownership status at a certain point of the game?  Does this added value just appear out of nowhere?  Or does it reflect some tangible factor which raises the territory’s gross domestic product (to borrow the term that economists would probably use for IPCs)?


  • 2017 2016

    @CWO:

    Following up on Baron’s “double dip” phrase, I’m wondering this about the proposed income bonus: what does it represent in terms of the game’s fictitious economic system?  In the OOB rules, each territory generates IPCs at a prescribed value which reflects how much economic importance (population, industrial base, raw materials, etc.) the territory has in the game’s behind-the-scenes economic model.  So each territory’s OOB IPC value represents the full economic output of which it is capable, and this value gets collected in full by whoever owns that territory.  In other words, in the OOB rules, ownership of territory affects who gets that territory’s IPCs but not the number of IPCs itself. What would be the rationale, therefore, for the number of IPCs increasing simply by virtue of the fact that the territory has a certain ownership status at a certain point of the game?  Does this added value just appear out of nowhere?  Or does it reflect some tangible factor which raises the territory’s gross domestic product (to borrow the term that economists would probably use for IPCs)?

    One other way is also to see partially IPC as some kind of income coming from a National Pride or Nationalism and Propaganda value for conquered territories vs lost ones.

    I would add that Flashman idea about reversing the Income Phase at the start of the turn and “boost phase” at the end, put on my thread, could somehow reduce the number of IPC gained over contested territories (the double dipping) going back and forth between two or more Powers.

    Put together, Boost Phase (need a better name like National Pride Bonus Income) and Industrial Income Phase over kept territories only for a whole turn, can somehow balance each other and rewards high IPC value territory only when their are unchallenged, but still get 1 IPC each turn while being contested by two powers.


  • 2017 2016

    There was some aspects about these questions develop somehow on this thread:

    @CWO:

    @toblerone77:

    I think a good solution would be assigning each island a “prestige” or “propaganda” value. Such as a newly captured island in the PTO awards the conquering nation a set amount of unit placement for capturing it. Example the US captures Okinawa. The US during it’s placement phase may place “x” amount of units there for that turn. For it’s propaganda value a die roll is also awarded 1D6 is rolled for each island captured and IPC are rewarded to reflect a warbonds drive during the collect income phase. Both of these bonuses would be a one time deal. Example:Okinawa is recaptured by the Japanese they will recieve the same bonus as the US did.

    By that same “prestige / propaganda” rationale, however, it could be argued that a nation which loses an island would suffer an IPC penalty (the country would earn fewer IPCs than its territorial holdings add up to) to reflect a drop in industrial output on the home front due to worker morale being adversely affected by the bad news. ** If good news gives the affected player a bonus, then bad news should cost the affected player a penalty. The system can’t simply work in one direction.**

    And T.I.Bonus follow this first guideline.


  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Doesn’t this rule turn China into a monster?


  • 2017 2016

    @Gargantua:

    Doesn’t this rule turn China into a monster?

    Maybe it doesn’t work for Global.
    Or China must be excluded.


  • '14

    First to CWOMarks question, about the fictitious rationalization within the broader production scheme, I would say that you can create any narrative you want to justify it. To my mind the economy/production scheme built into the game is already highly abstracted and not particularly analogous to any strict historical reality.

    Basically the idea was to create the simplest possible rule that would allow for a high economy game, without having to redraw the map or change the base production values of territories. Otherwise it doesn’t do much good breathing new life into old games. The idea to separate the Boost phase and put it at the start was twofold. First to provide an incentive/advantage to holding territory for the duration of the round, and also to get the rule in effect from the very beginning of the game.

    Like Flashman, I am not particularly fond of the double dip, but as Baron pointed out this rule seems to give the flavor of what happens when you reverse the collect income phase (and bring it forward), without distorting the overall money collected too much. Basically it was a game balance decision, because Germany and Russia in particular suffer disproportionately when you get rid of the double dip completely. That said, there is no reason you couldn’t add this rule into a game where collect income is reversed (from the end of the turn to the beginning.)

    As for 1940 games and Global, it is hard to say. Those games are already so rules intensive, and the number of nations and the situation concerning neutrals etc. departs quite a bit from the more basic games like Classic, Revised, and 1942.2 for which this rule was developed. The rule works in AA50, but with the National Objectives it probably adds too much money for most peoples tastes, and then there is the annoying question about how to handle China. So I would say that the rule works for the simple 5 power games, but would probably have to be adapted for the more advanced games.

    Territory Income Bonus or Boost, was just something generic that we settled on, but I’m all ears when it comes to a stronger name. I did associate it somewhat with national prestige or the propaganda value of small victories/losses, but ultimately I was more concerned with the game play, and the simplicity of introduction, than in the rationalization. My view is that, if you can rationalize the disparity in OOB Russian income vs say Japan, then you can pretty much rationalize anything in this game. Of more interest to me is what the rule does in terms of purchasing options and broader gameplay strategies. Even a slight boost to Russia is major, and gives them much more forward fighting capability than they would otherwise be able to pull off. The Axis bonus has the potential to be considerable, but the Western Powers also have many more options, especially in the first round. In play testing I have found that, at least for 1942.2 this rule negates the need for an Allied bid.

    I also believe that this rule is the simplest way to encourage fighting over all those valueless territories. The Lesser pacific islands. Even territories like Iceland or Greenland could come into play. The difference between +1 on the bonus and +0 in the normal game, makes all the difference here. I’d say you have to try it to see what I mean. Let me know if you get a chance to. I’d love to hear if you guys like the effect on gameplay.


  • 2017 2016

    @Black_Elk:

    Basically the idea was to create the simplest possible rule that would allow for a high economy game, without having to redraw the map or change the base production values of territories. Otherwise it doesn’t do much good breathing new life into old games. The idea to separate the Boost phase and put it at the start was twofold. First to provide an incentive/advantage to holding territory for the duration of the round, and also to get the rule in effect from the very beginning of the game.

    Like Flashman, I am not particularly fond of the double dip, but as Baron pointed out this rule seems to give the flavor of what happens when you reverse the collect income phase (and bring it forward), without distorting the overall money collected too much. Basically it was a game balance decision, because Germany and Russia in particular suffer disproportionately when you get rid of the double dip completely. That said, there is no reason you couldn’t add this rule into a game where collect income is reversed (from the end of the turn to the beginning.)

    I also believe that this rule is the simplest way to encourage fighting over all those valueless territories. The Lesser pacific islands. Even territories like Iceland or Greenland could come into play. The difference between +1 on the bonus and +0 in the normal game, makes all the difference here. I’d say you have to try it to see what I mean. Let me know if you get a chance to. I’d love to hear if you guys like the effect on gameplay.

    I bolded the interesting aspects of the problem and of this Boost Income Phase.
    I’m still thinking a way to correct two points which bother me:
    I’m still wondering about the massive injection of new IPCs. It surely have an impact on the balance of things.
    And is it possible to erase the double dip effect over contested territories by reversing the Income Phase and the Boost Phase and at the same times finding a way to give something to Russia and Germany for the lost IPCs?


    Here is something based on your idea but a bit different trying to resolve this conundrum:
    Of course,
    first you collect Income for building units and
    at the end of the turn, you get the Bonus for just conquered territories and keeping the old occupied ones.

    Do you think this system can work as a rule for Conquered Territories Reward Phase at the end of a player’s turn?
    Give 1 IPC for each just conquered territory during the Combat Phase.
    Give 1 additional IPC for each victory city captured during the Combat Phase.
    And 1 IPC for each only foreign territory (as colored on the board) captured during preceding other turns.

    So capturing West Russia (in 1942.2) give Russian 1 IPC for the victory, and another 1 IPC for keeping a foreign ones the next turn.
    On the reverse, it gives only 1 IPC for Germany because it is part of their initial territories.

    I think you still get your incentive to attack and capture territories from the other alliance with the 1 IPC even “0” IPC trtry.
    And when it is your “0” territories which are invaded, you can still decide to let it go because it has no value for you.
    But you will think it twice knowing that it becomes a steady “1” IPC flow each turn for the enemy.

    It will not add much overly new IPCs on the actual board, but I hope it can balance the lost of double dipping on territories going back and forth.

    It is maybe too different from your HR but I use the same generals principals: you surely see what I’m trying to fix.

    Does it solve the problem without involving too much new unbalancing IPCs?


  • '14

    Its seems pretty solid. I like getting the VCs in there. There is nothing in that rule you propose that leads me to think it wouldn’t work.

    Basically the wording on the Territory Income Bonus rule proposed above was to keep it as simple as possible. Often I find with a house rule, the simpler the explanation the more likely it is that I can persuade someone to try it.

    Honestly though, the amount of money introduced here is distributed in a much more balanced way than you might expect. I was surprised actually at how well it seemed to work. Now I think the game is more balanced when you add in the extra cash Axis vs Allies, which is why I think it negates the need for a bid. We have tried KGF and KJF games as Allies. We have tried most of the standard Axis strategies, the Tank drive east, full Sea Lion, Inf wall, bombers and subs, mixed ground, and Med fleet openings. With Japan we have tried standard tank drive, KJF survival, the northern route, the southern route, UK squeeze, even invasion north America (though that failed, as one might expect, J still held W. Coast US for a round, which was awesome!) Basically if you like the idea of more units on the board I think you’ll dig it.

    I have long felt that the overall economy in A&A was too low. Not way off, but just a little too low. For people to buy some of the more exotic units or to experiment with unconventional buys/strats. Having just 10-15 extra ipcs per nation can be huge. The ability to buy a carrier deck say, or drop 3 tanks, or actually afford a new battleship, makes the game highly enjoyable. Basically you have several options, instead of just a couple select “winning openings.” Ultimately what it comes down to is the effect of unit replacement over starting units. By introducing the boost money, you make the replacement cost of the starting units easier to absorb. So you can afford to risk them to do more, knowing that they are somewhat easier to replace. Mistakes and one sides battles, become slightly less devastating, and it is a bit easier for the underdog to recover. The endgame feels deeper, and games tend to last longer. And you really don’t have to change much to get it working, just the one simple rule. Once you get used to the territory income bonus it only takes a couple seconds to implement. I’m hoping people might try it and let us know how the games went. So far all of mine have been pretty epic, I want to give more anecdotal evidence, but I know that you have to see it work to see it work.

    UK and Japan start larger, but they can be squeezed out too, with effort. Russia gets a leg up, but they have to fight to retain their purchasing power. It’s the same with Germany. Folding into a defensive ball isn’t everything anymore. If USA doesn’t fight for territory (even the 0 ipc islands, or china) then they start to get outclassed by Japan. So it’s to their advantage to fight. Basically it’s to everyone’s advantage to fight, even with the double dip still in effect for normal income. The bonus alone makes you start to play in ways that make more intuitive sense for a game that is supposed to be war. You don’t just want to smash and grab, and give up ground back and forth endlessly. You want to hold the territory for the round, so you get the bonus, and you want to steal it away from the enemy before they get a chance to collect their bonus. Maybe it is a half measure or compromise between moving the collect income phase to the beginning of the turn, and just the normal game rules with the double dip we’ve gotten used to. But it works. It works pretty well I think. I haven’t been able to break the game yet no bid when this rule was in play. And it’s been fun, so that is encouraging. I hope people will give it a shot and let me know how things went 🙂


  • 2017 2016

    I don’t want to add too much money 'cause my fellow players don’t want a too long game.
    Giving ipc for each territory owned take a little more time to count, and the second bonus phase is already slowing the game.

    I believe you  about giving a little help to allies, because they start with more territories.
    And it is more interesting to be able to survive bad luck turns.


  • '14

    Its easier to count than you’d think. Once you start to see the groupings.
    For example, all of North and South America (with Greenland) is 10 for US, plus Hawaii and midway that’s 12, the four china spaces etc. At the start the Japanese pacific islands including Formosa (and honestly, when was the last time you played a game where Formosa mattered? well now it does hehe!) all those are 10, taken together with Japan is 11. Anyway, the point is, once you’ve counted the bonus a couple times it starts to become intuitive. I never even realized for example, until I tried this house rule, how many territories each nation actually controls at the start of the game (including all the 0 ipcs territories.) Or that there were 70 total territories. Because in normal games much of that land doesn’t matter or influence anything. I don’t know, I’m not saying it’s for everyone. But it is a relatively easy way to get more money into the game, without having to do a bunch of complex/nation specific rules. And it doesn’t distort the OOB so much that it changes the core game. One of the reasons why I tried to come up with this rule in the first place, was because people in my gaming group where having difficulty tracking house national objectives. This was a much easier way to bring money into the game, without tying it to a bunch of detailed conditions that had to be tracked, or multi part rules that were hard to explain. This rule is easy. In it’s simplest form you can write it out like this

    Bonus = +1 ipc for each territory that a Nation controls at the start of their turn

    It has an elegant simplicity to it. It takes less time to figure out than normal income collection (where you are always subtracting or adding from the start position, “up here”, “but down there” to figure out what you are owed etc.) Here all territories are treated in the same way, so its universal, and easier to adopt across the board.

    Also I should clarify, when I say expect a longer game, I mean more rounds into the endgame. The pace of the gameplay remains the same or very similar. The additional phase is fast, if anything it just makes the purchasing phase more engaging since you have more build options available. More units means more rolling, but that’s one of the most exciting parts of the game anyway.

    I have 10 vegas style dice, and they get the job no problem. This is just an aside, but you should all get vegas style dice if you can. The dice that come with the game OOB have rounded corners and depressed marks for the numbers. There is a reason you will never ever see dice like that used is Las Vegas. I’d say more but it is too mind blowing for this thread. Google it if you’re curious 🙂


  • 2017 2016

    Maybe it can be halved to keep the duration of the game almost the same.
    Give .5 IPC rounding down for all controled territory.
    And  1 IPC for a Victory City
    Is it that important to count it another time than income phase?
    Why not add the bonus after the regular Income phase?


  • '14

    well the main reason to avoid fractions is that this is a base 1 game. There is no 50 cent ipc piece. So what would you do in the situation where a nation has 3 territories etc. Round up? Round down? I find it easier to just avoid that problem altogether by working with base 1.

    I also can’t see a reason to hold the money down like that by halving it. The board has a natural balance built in, which this house rule takes advantage of. And it produces numbers in that range. And that range leads to pretty fun gameplay. The money is not as crazy as you’d think. Once the time comes to actually buy units with that extra money you discover pretty quickly that you’re still limited in what sorts of builds you can pull off. Plus the situation at the start of the game is subject to change as well, depending on what people do, so these value balance further as the game progresses.

    I think the longer game duration has more to do with the psychological effect of more toys (units) you have to play with, and the natural conservatism that A&A favors to the built in inf push mechanics, but you could end the game sooner by throwing everything into the fight. I have just found that most of my games play deeper into the endgame.

    Is it that important to count it another time than income phase?

    Yes I think it is important to separate the bonus from the normal collect income phase for this reason: doing it at the same time adds complexity to the simple counting/adding process. If it is a separate phase you are only counting one thing at a time, instead of counting 2 things at one time. Do you see what I mean?
    What might seem to you in the abstract as “counting twice” is actually easier to do than adding this number during collect income phase. In the collect income phase you are counting the printed numbers on the mapboard (or adding/subtracting from the starting income number). In the bonus phase you are counting the total number of all territories controlled 1 per. If you try to do both these mental math processes at the same time it introduces unnecessary confusion and becomes impractical. I know because I tried it that way first, and we would lose track. This way is much easier.
    It provides a nice clean division. Once at the start of the turn, once at the end.
    You can still drink beer and do this, I promise 🙂

    Also, doing it at a separate time (which just happens to be at the start of the turn) has additional benefits. There is the advantage to gaining territory and holding it for the round, which has some cool/positive effects on the gameplay hinted at above. It also gives Russia that 35 ipcs at the start, since the bonus happens at the beginning of the first turn. And that is hugely balancing since Russia has the initiative in the standard games.

    I do recommend the paper money as well. It makes all the difference. If you have AA50 or one of the older boards, or even monopoly. I deeply lament the loss of paper money, I truly believe it is part of the game. Counters do not satisfy me in the least.


  • '14

    what does it represent in terms of the game’s fictitious economic system?  In the OOB rules, each territory generates IPCs at a prescribed value which reflects how much economic importance (population, industrial base, raw materials, etc.) the territory has in the game’s behind-the-scenes economic model.  So each territory’s OOB IPC value represents the full economic output of which it is capable, and this value gets collected in full by whoever owns that territory.  In other words, in the OOB rules, ownership of territory affects who gets that territory’s IPCs but not the number of IPCs itself. What would be the rationale, therefore, for the number of IPCs increasing simply by virtue of the fact that the territory has a certain ownership status at a certain point of the game?  Does this added value just appear out of nowhere?  Or does it reflect some tangible factor which raises the territory’s gross domestic product (to borrow the term that economists would probably use for IPCs)?

    First the goal of the house rule is to increase the full economic output capable, to increase the totals across the board, but to do so in a way which is not overly distorting with game balance.

    How about this. If the printed number represents the aggregate of all production capacity possible in a given territory at a given point in the game, then the bonus could represent that territory being integrated with the rest of a Nation’s territories and logistics network . This is a baseline value since each territory is at 1. The printed IPCs are still distributed the same way they always are during the normal collect income phase at the end of the turn. The bonus represents whatever kind of “collective industrial benefit” you want to imagine that comes from holding these possessions integrated at the start of the turn. Keeping it at 1 universally keeps it simple. You don’t have to redraw the map or redesign the system, just add the simple thing on top of it. I think this takes the behind the scenes economic model up to higher level, increasing the totals by about a third, which is comfortable. It’s not super high, but it makes a difference.


  • Customizer

    If you wanted a way to increase the amount of IPCs that each country can spend you could come up with a bunch of new National Objectives for each country. Depending on just how much more income you wanted to add to the game, you could make them as easy or as hard as you like.
    An example of a pretty easy NO for Germany might be: +5 IPCs for Axis control of Paris.
    A little harder one might be: +5 IPCs if Germany has at least 3 submarines in the Atlantic, excluding sea zones 113, 114 and 115.
    A really hard one might be: +5 IPCs for Axis control of London.
    A nearly impossible one might be: +5 IPCs for Axis control of Washington DC.

    If you just look over the map, you could come up with all kinds of stuff to add on. Plus, they don’t necessarily have to all be 5 IPCs. You could make them more or less. I used house rule to give several new NOs to England at 3 IPCs each so they have opportunities to get a little NO cash but not overwhelming. Plus I eliminated that stupid “control all territories” NO because it was simply too hard to maintain.
    You could also justify attaining these National Objectives as a boost to morale, national prestige and propaganda value, whatever. Just an alternative to counting territories and “double-dipping”.


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

    Another idea along the lines of the one just described by knp would be to identify for various territories some geographic or economic factors which could justify the allocation of bonus income – for instance, on the grounds that they serve as force multipliers.  To give an example: capturing France served as a force multiplier for Germany’s U-boat campaign against Britain because it gave Germany direct access to the Atlantic instead of having to go around Denmark and through the North Sea to get from the Baltic to the Atlantic.  Such bonuses could be country-specific, depending on the situation – applicable to some countries but not to others, depending on whether or not a particular force multiplier is of use to a specific country.  (Example: naval force multipliers would generally be of little use to a land power like Russia.)

    I agree with the first half of Black Elk’s comment that A&A is “highly abstracted and not particularly analogous to any strict historical reality”, but not really with the second half.  Just because the official A&A game is abstracted (which it is) doesn’t mean that it’s completely arbitrary or unhistorical (which it isn’t), and I’d argue that the same principle could apply to house rules.  It’s perfectly true, as Black Elk noted, that people can be as arbitrary as they want to be in devising house rules for their own personal use.  My point is simply that the more a house rule proposal rests on historically credible ground, the greater the chances that it will be seen as broadly acceptable by those members of the A&A community who like house rules which have some kind of historical foundation.  But that’s just a personal preference in my case.  Some A&A players may not have any concerns about arbitrariness or realism or historical justification, which is fine.  Customized rules are, after all, unofficial rules, and nobody is obliged to adopt rules which (for whatever reason) they don’t like.


  • '14

    Yes but a bunch of new NOs are rules intensive. Force multipliers sound pretty rules intensive too. Anything that takes longer than a line to explain, and anything that takes more than a minute to track, is going to fall apart for a lot of people, and has less chance of working across multiple boards.

    I think I come from a school of players, perhaps a different one than many people here, that thinks even the basic AA game is already at the upper limit of complexity for the vast majority of people. Its really hard to teach people how to play these games already. So when I come up with a house rule, I prefer a rule which is universal in its application (the same for each player/nation and across the map) as opposed to a nuanced one.  I really don’t favor complex rules. What I am trying to do here is get money into the basic games, with an even distribution, without resorting to complex rules. Hence the very simple rule outlined above. This is because I feel that the gameplay is more enjoyable when this extra money is included. The basic production values are unchanged, which is why it is described generically as a bonus.

    NOs are highly nuanced, they are nation specific and territory specific. Just look at the gamebook page in AA50. It takes paragraphs to lay out, and then all that information has to be tracked and held in mind (and if you’re on the board you don’t have a computer to do this for you.) Also, it has been done before many times. People have binders full of house rules like that. This forum is replete with threads describing such nuanced rules, specific to certain situations. I am trying to do something somewhat different here, by making it universal rather than specific.

    I guess to CWO Marcs point, I do think that it’s somewhat arbitrary, arbitrary in the base game I mean, to have a base zero value for so many territories on the board. Basically Larry made a decision to round down to zero instead of up to 1 for the baseline. Which is fine, but it strikes me as a low economy way to do it. If you enjoy a high economy game, as I do, this house rule is a very simple way to get one, without breaking the set up or changing the mechanics/rules so substantially that it becomes a different game.

    This rule is way of getting closer to a base 1 territory value, without upsetting too much the overall production aspect of the game. I’m not saying it’s wrong at base zero, but it can work the other way, which is why I feel that it is arbitrary. If you play a few rounds with this rule in effect you will see what I am driving at. To my mind the explanation or justification is secondary to the positive gameplay effects. I mean, I guess if you want to help me here, then lets come up with a way to describe the bonus which is more inclusive to satisfy your desire for the historical connection or to fold it within a broader IPC discussion that holds for you. But the rule already works in its simple formulation, so I am reluctant to modify it too much, because then I don’t know if it would actually hold up in game.

    I guess what I like is the idea that I player could select at the outset whether they wanted to play a high or low economy game, or if you like, a long game or a short game. And this rule provides a mechanic to take it from low (normal) to high (with the bonus) without changing anything else beyond the addition of this simple phase. Does that make sense? Also, this input is all excellent. I do value such thoughtful analysis and commentary as is being provided in this thread.


  • 2017 2016

    I guess what I like is the idea that I player could select at the outset whether they wanted to play a high or low economy game, or if you like, a long game or a short game. And this rule provides a mechanic to take it from low (normal) to high (with the bonus) without changing anything else beyond the addition of this simple phase.

    Your Income Bonus Phase is simple and provides a way to input a somewhat relatively balance/ or correcting the little bias toward Axis in 1942.2.

    What I’m looking for is some other ways to add a few IPCs but keep it inside +5 IPCs instead of +15 because 5 powers x15 means 75 additional IPCs per whole turn becomes a lot of infused money in the long run.

    That’s why I input the two different modes of counting the bonus:

    1. At the end of the turn, only a just conquered territory + old non-starting territories + Victory City additional.
    2. At the start of the turn, counting all the territories still possessed, + 1 for each Victory City owned and dividing sum by 2 and rounding up.
      I have the impression that option 1) can give around 3-5 IPCs/turn. While  each loosing,  Russia and Germany most likely, maybe 2 IPCs/turn from recurrent double dipping lost, because Income Phase is at the beginning of the turn.
      And that option 2) could be around 7-8 IPCs  bonus/turn.

    Don’t know if there is other simple way to modulate the bonus income.
    Do you have other good idea?


  • 2017 2016

    @Black_Elk:

    First the goal of the house rule is to increase the full economic output capable, to increase the totals across the board, but to do so in a way which is not overly distorting with game balance.

    How about this. If the printed number represents the aggregate of all production capacity possible in a given territory at a given point in the game, then the bonus could represent that territory being integrated with the rest of a Nation’s territories and logistics network . This is a baseline value since each territory is at 1. The printed IPCs are still distributed the same way they always are during the normal collect income phase at the end of the turn. The bonus represents whatever kind of “collective industrial benefit” you want to imagine that comes from holding these possessions integrated at the start of the turn. Keeping it at 1 universally keeps it simple. You don’t have to redraw the map or redesign the system, just add the simple thing on top of it. I think this takes the behind the scenes economic model up to higher level, increasing the totals by about a third, which is comfortable. It’s not super high, but it makes a difference.

    This  kind of rationalization about the bonus is ok I think.


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

    @Black_Elk:

    What I am trying to do here is get money into the basic games, with an even distribution, without resorting to complex rules.

    Fair enough – I have no issues with this.  When the house rule objectives are put in those terms, it actually raises the possibility of achieving this in an even simpler way than has been discussed so far (unless the suggestion has in fact already been made; I admit that I haven’t followed these discussions too closely).  All that would needed are these two short house rules (or variations with different numbers, if the proposed figures sound too low or too high):

    a) All territories on the game map with printed names but no printed IPC values are considered to have an IPC value of 1.

    b) All territories with a printed IPC value are considered to be worth double that amount.

    Problem solved: more money in the game, no complicated rules to remember.  And no justification needed for such an across-the-board change that affects every rule “a)” territory uniformly and every rule “b)” territory uniformly; the rationale would simply be that Larry undervalued everything on the map and that the two house rules merely correct this error.

    If such a suggestion has already been made in one of the house rules threads, is there any particular reason why it was rejected (if that was the case)?


  • 2017 2016

    Or more simply: just add+1 IPC for every territory “0” is “1”, “1” is “2”, etc. owned during the collect Income Phase.
    Almost the same results, except for a little bonus for double dips territories.
    No need to add the Income Bonus Phase.


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