AXIS & ALLIES map from Hearts of Iron



  • Some years ago I was creating a map of the world to a sort of Axis & Allies … giant map 300 cm long (3 meters  :-P).
    I started from the map of the PC game Hearts of Iron, making screenshots of the monitor and then joining all.
    I have not had time to develop it, but if someone want the files, can download at this link on my forum: http://www.medioevouniversalis.org/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=98&p=17152#p17152 … for each step there is a file to download high-resolution between 20 and 40 MB.

    I hope it can be useful to some of you to create its map  😉

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

    Impressive-looking maps – thanks for sharing.  I have a few questions:

    • According to what system are the maps divided into smaller map areas?  In some places, like the United States, the map areas correspond to several states grouped together; in other words, they show separate jurisdictions being combined into larger regions.  In some places, the reverse is true: single jurisdictions are broken up into many pieces.  This is especially true in Europe, where there is an extremely large number of pieces.

    • According to what system are the map territories named?  In North America, for instance, the southern third of the province of Quebec is shown as being a defined region (which it isn’t – I live there), and as far as I can tell from the small print it’s labeled “Montreal”, which is the name of a city not the name of a region.

    • According to what system is the coloured map coloured?  It shows, for instance, parts of Germany and Belgium in one colour and parts of Germany and Holland in another colour.

    • What year are the maps set in?  1939 or 2016 or some other year?  I tried to figure it out by looking at the coloured map, but I got confused because the countries are broken up into a large number of regions, and because the coloured map connects them in ways that are puzzling (as I mentioned in the previous paragraph).



  • @CWO:

    Impressive-looking maps – thanks for sharing.  I have a few questions:

    • According to what system are the maps divided into smaller map areas?  In some places, like the United States, the map areas correspond to several states grouped together; in other words, they show separate jurisdictions being combined into larger regions.  In some places, the reverse is true: single jurisdictions are broken up into many pieces.  This is especially true in Europe, where there is an extremely large number of pieces.

    Unfortunately I do not remember the reasoning that I had done so, I believe it was 1998 when I created it.
    The first step was the original map of Hearts of Iron, the last step was the point where I had stopped to working on the map.
    It was a prototype, so surely there are some mistakes on the boundaries that should be corrected.
    I think I joined the smaller territories to create fairly large territories for the miniatures of Axis & Allies.

    @CWO:

    • According to what system are the map territories named?  In North America, for instance, the southern third of the province of Quebec is shown as being a defined region (which it isn’t – I live there), and as far as I can tell from the small print it’s labeled “Montreal”, which is the name of a city not the name of a region.

    The name of territories in the first step are the original of Hearts of Iron.

    @CWO:

    • According to what system is the coloured map coloured? It shows, for instance, parts of Germany and Belgium in one colour and parts of Germany and Holland in another colour.

    The colors are the various types of terrain:
    light green is the plain
    green is the forest
    dark green is the jungle
    beige is the desert
    light brown is the hill
    dark brown is the mountain
    gray is mountain range Himalaya

    Surely in Europe there is something to fix to use it during WWII… it was one of the my first prototype and I did not have much experience.

    @CWO:

    • What year are the maps set in?  1939 or 2016 or some other year?  I tried to figure it out by looking at the coloured map, but I got confused because the countries are broken up into a large number of regions, and because the coloured map connects them in ways that are puzzling (as I mentioned in the previous paragraph).

    Yes, sorry, but if you have time to create a correction draft on my map, I could fix it … we could do one continent at a time …


  • 2016 2015 '14 Customizer

    Unfortunately I don’t believe this map would work for Axis and Allies since areas like Europe must be unrealistically enlarged to fit all the playing pieces. In Hearts of Iron the map can be more realistic since you can zoom in and click on small stacks of computer icons.


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

    Thanks for the information, Veldriss.  I agree with Der Kuenstler that using this map for A&A would be a problem, both for the reasons he gives and for a few other reasons which I’ll describe briefly.

    First, any A&A game has to have a clearly defined starting date, with a map that matches it.  The rules, the political situation, the starting setup of units and the map territories all have to work together; the A&A games set in 1940, 1941 and 1942 are all very different, and rightfully so.  My understanding of Hearts of Iron is that it starts in 1936 (presumable due to the Spanish Civil War), which is four years earlier than A&A Global 1940, the A&A game with the earliest starting date (not counting A&A 1914, which deals with WWI rather than WWII).

    Second, any map for a game with an area-based movement system has to have a system of territorial divisions that is correctly scaled for the game’s movement rules.  The maps shown here have many more divisions than the A&A Global map.  If we keep the A&A rules which say that a particular unit can move 1 space per turn, it will take that unit much longer to travel across (let’s say) Europe on these maps than on the regular Global map.  The only way to compensate for that would be to change the rules to increase the number of spaces that a unit can move in one turn…and that would potentially unbalance the game.

    Third, the map colouring here places the emphasis on terrain features rather than on political status.  This is very confusing from an A&A perspective because in A&A it’s political status that counts the most.  The newer-style A&A maps (like Global 1940) do actually “look” topographical (in other words, they look a bit like a colour satellite picture of the Earth’s surface), but most of those topographical elements are purely decorative; what really matters are the artificial territorial subdivision lines.  Other than the basic land/sea division, the only terrain features in Global 1940 that function as true terrain modifiers are the three impassable ones: the Sahara, the Pripet Marshes and the Himalayas.

    Fourth, the map would need IPC values assigned to each territory.  IPC values are fundamental to A&A because A&A is driven by a four-step engine: territory generates income, income buys units, units fight battles, and battles win territory.  Figuring out which territory ought to have which IPC value under a set of house rules would not only take a good deal of time, it would probably involve a lot of controversial debate because a lot of people would have different opinions on the subject.

    These maps are certainly very attractive – I like them a lot – but unfortunately adapting them from a computer game to a very different board game might not be possible if the maps are kept at they are.  They’d probably require a major redesign of many elements.



  • Thx CWO Marc, I agree with you and Der Kuenstler.

    There is still a lot of work to do to turn this map and make it usable for Axis & Allies System.

    I remain available to make the necessary changes if someone wants to help me with drafts like this example:

    This is an example of a map that I created for a medieval boardgame (CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE):


  • '14 Customizer

    That is very impressive.


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