• Customizer

    So I know there have probably been a myriad of threads and posts on this topic, but after looking into how Unrestricted Submarine Warfare (USW) was actually used in the war, I had an idea that would make it both historically accurate and viable for Germany to attempt.

    In the war, the Germans declared USW as a gamble. They knew they were hurting British trade and discouraging neutral nations (read: the US) from trading with them. Their chief concern was of course the fact that the US might be brought into the war, but to some senior members of the German command, this was worth the risk if it hurt Britain sufficiently.

    I think this risk should be represented in the rule. Here’s my revised text:

    Unrestricted Submarine Warfare
    The German player can declare that he or she will begin unrestricted submarine warfare at any time during the game. Once
    this is declared, Germany will conduct submarine attacks against both the United States’ and the British Empire’s shipping
    routes during their respective Collect Income phases. On each of these powers’ turns, the Germany player will roll 1 die for
    each German submarine in sea zones 2, 7, and/or 8. For each roll of 1-5, the attacked power will deduct this number of IPC’s from the income it collects during this phase. If a 6 is rolled (on either the U.S.'s or Britain’s turn), the United States will immediately enter the war on the side of the Allies.

    I think this change makes USW tempting enough for the Germans to want to try (it is certainly NOT tempting now) and gives a realistic impression of the risk associated with the move.


  • In our games, the submarine warfare rule rarely (in fact never) comes in to play. If Germany is spending money on a navy big enough to contest the Atlantic, Russian and French troops should be able to establish solid lines on each front.

    I like the idea of increasing the value of the hits, but maybe consider making it a 1 and a 2 to bring the US into the war. The US is in after turn 3 or 4 anyways, so I think there would need to be a 1/3 chance of accidentaly bringing them in but an even bigger reward for the sub warfare move should you decide to engage it early. I’m a big fan of the fact that planes can’t engage naval ships. If I’m not mistaken the first aircraft carrier was devised in the Great War.

    Starlight Sniper

  • '14

    I would agree with tweaking the USW rule to favor bigger risk for greater reward. The sea zones affected really ought to just be those surrounding Britain and Ireland. Outside of a few U-boat classes, I don’t think many ventured into the Atlantic very far. Gamewise, this makes putting U-boats on station for USW a bit riskier with the Royal Navy near by. But Britain ought to be challenged with a real, potentially crippling, economic threat. I was never a fan of the mitigation of the original USW rules.

    Allowing certain parts of the Med to be affected, too, might make the threat a bit more potent. This might counteract taking certain, previously allowed sea zones for USW in the Atlantic away.


  • USW Zones should be 2,3,4,7,8,9,15.

    You role one dice for EVERY Sub that is in one of that SZs when it comes to collect income for the British player.
    The result will be split up between BE and US. (If its an odd number the Brits suffer more)


  • Unrestricted Submarine Warfare nearly won the war for Germany (according to multiple sources). That is clearly not happening in our games. To make it like the strategic bombing raids in earlier A&A versions would do wonders. It is the one house rule (yes, I tend to dislike HR’s) I will very likely use.

    Bringing the number for US involvement down to 3 may make it a little more realistic, though, in my opinion.


  • some thoughts for more USW impact (together with PTR):

    • 2 more starting subs for Germany (near Morocco maybe?)
    • More USW-zones (!)
    • when declaring USW, Germany gets every Round 1 Sub as Bonus for free
    • US will come into war in R4 never earlier - regardless how much damage Germany does to their   
        income in the Rounds before
    • Subs do not have to stop when entering a mined enemy seazone and dont have to
        role for mines
    • instead of firing, Subs can submerge. Submerging Subs can only be hit with a 1.

  • I think that every country should have a convoy threshold like the economic and political collapse rules. Also they should have a restricted sub warfare option that is not as effective but still an option.


  • Perhaps this:  Remove the sub as an attack/defense unit and use it strictly for economic damage. You could then do some real damage for either side. This new idea could be tweaked in many ways of course.

    Cheers,

    Starlight Sniper

  • 2021 2020 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @ossel:

    In the war, the Germans declared USW as a gamble. They knew they were hurting British trade and discouraging neutral nations (read: the US) from trading with them. Their chief concern was of course the fact that the US might be brought into the war, but to some senior members of the German command, this was worth the risk if it hurt Britain sufficiently.

    Just to add a bit of extra background to this: Germany was planning to begin USW in February 1917, at which time it expected to have enough U-boats constructed to bring Britain to its knees.  According to Barbara Tuchman’s book The Zimmermann Telegram, Germany was actually certain that this action would bring the US into the war, but it had calculated that it would take the Americans about six months or so to mobilize fully and to bring significant numbers of trained men to Europe.  The Germans were gambling that this six-month-or-so period would be long enough for her USW campaign to force Britain to surrender, and thus that by the time the Americans showed up in large numbers the war would be over.


  • My Idea is, if Germany declares Unrestricted Submarine Warfare, for every Submarine in the Atlantic Area (not counting the Baltic Sea or Mediterranean) roll a dice, and whatever is rolled for each dice, take that value times 2 from the British Income. Once it’s the US’ turn, they can declare war. Germany also receives 2 free Submarines in Sea Zone 7 the same turn.

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