USA - G40 - One economy Two Players



  • I don’t know if this has been discussed before.

    House Rule for G40 allowing the USA to have two players;  One for the European Theater and one for the Pacific Theater.

    Unlike the UK, USA has a single economy.  It is up to the two players playing the US to decide how to split the IPCs on a “per turn” basis.

    This creates some interesting strategies and internal discussions.  Does the US want to follow the “Europe First” strategy as originally decided between Roosevelt and Churchill?  …. Or, will Japan make some unexpected aggressive moves to force the US to react?

    Production can be deployed in any US factory, regardless of the Theater.

    Anyway, it is a very simple house rule that we sometimes use when having an 8-player game.

    Cheers.



  • I really like your idea about 2 players playing the US, however… I personally wouldn’t have them argue about who gets what to spend. Perhaps a base income of 26 IPCs each which can increase or decrease as they pick up extra territories on their respective boards or lose territories. I would give the 10 IPC America NO bonus as well as the Paris NO to the Atlantic player, and all other NOs to the Pacific player. Of course this divides the money evenly which can prevent the Pacific from building a large enough fleet to deal with Japan, so I would allow units from one side to go to the other for that player to control once units are on their side of the world.



  • I see your concerns that this could cause internal conflict between the two US commanders.  But well, to be a little candid … this is exactly what we were hoping it would create.    heheh…

    I’ve only played this way one time a few months ago in a game that we didn’t even fully finish.  I was Pacific Command and fortunately, a friend of mine whom I value his strategic judgment, was European Command.  Therefore, we could come to agreements relatively easy.

    To do this right, it requires a bit of roll-playing.  Each US commander has to assume the roll of a general/admiral competing for resources in Washington to accomplish his/her mission.

    In the end, ALL USA income arrives to the US Treasury in Washington.  Also, USA requires the ability to throw tons of resources into alternating European and Pacific theaters in order to gain supremacy when the time is needed to do so.  … If the resources are constantly divided relatively evenly between the two theaters, it will be difficult to dominate the Atlantic and launch an Operation Torch.  Alternately, it will be equally difficult to crank out enough naval units in the Pacific to make the Japanese regret they ever even contemplated taking the Philippines.

    Therefore, the philosophy we were hoping to adopt in the “One Nation, Two Players, One Economy” USA rule is that of maybe Nimitz and King competing for respective naval resources in their Pacific and Atlantic theaters.  And it should get a little heated … but never hostal.

    For people who might be in to this, maybe a good way forward would be to have the Russian player act as the “President / Congress / Defense Secretary”?  Since Russia has interest in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters (let’s face it, it sucks if India becomes Japanese for the Russians … you can pretty much say goodbye to the Caucuses), that player could help be a tie-breaker if and agreement cannot be reached.

    Anyway … just something to kick around.  If we ever have another 8-player game we’ll give it a shot over/down here again with the Russian mediator.  … But I understand that a “divided economy” way could be used … or maybe a “guaranteed income” for each US theater an only have perhaps 20 IPCs that need to be decided upon etc … there are lots of ways to do it.  Would be interesting to read some of the ways this has been attempted before.



  • Nice to see this thread, as I was thinking about it as well past week. It would be for another setting though. When playing a 2v2 game, it might be nice to split up the Allies into two theatres, Pacific and Europe. It might be a more effective way of dividing the attention of the Allied players.


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    @the_jetset:

    I see your concerns that this could cause internal conflict between the two US commanders.  But well, to be a little candid … this is exactly what we were hoping it would create.    heheh… Â

    Therefore, the philosophy we were hoping to adopt in the “One Nation, Two Players, One Economy” USA rule is that of maybe Nimitz and King competing for respective naval resources in their Pacific and Atlantic theaters.  And it should get a little heated … but never hostal. Â

    For people who might be in to this, maybe a good way forward would be to have the Russian player act as the “President / Congress / Defense Secretary”?  Since Russia has interest in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters (let’s face it, it sucks if India becomes Japanese for the Russians … you can pretty much say goodbye to the Caucuses), that player could help be a tie-breaker if and agreement cannot be reached. Â

    Â

    The idea of having two US commanders as a method of deliberately introducing extra conflict into the game is an intriguing one.  And it’s not unrealistic, given that the US in WWII genuinely did have to decide on its resource allocation between two theatres, and that Roosevelt genuinely did have to deal with some tricky differences of opinions between senior commanders (the MacArthur-Nimitz case being a good example).

    Using the Soviet player to arbitrate intractable arguments between the two US players, however, strikes me as inadvisable for a number of reasons.  First, one could argue that introducing an artificial solution to a problem that was itself artificially introduced is too complicated; a much simpler solution is to not introduce the artificial problem in the first place.  Second, there’s no historical basis for the idea of – to use just one example – having Moscow make decisions on Roosevelt’s behalf regarding disputes between MacArthur and Nimitz.  The desk on which the proverbial buck stops, as Harry Truman put it when he was President, is located in the White House, not in the Kremlin.  (Roosevelt already had plenty of trouble convincing his fellow Americans that the US should ally itself with the Godless Communists, so the last thing he needed was to casually say during one of his fireside chats that “I refer all my difficult decisions to Joseph Stalin.”)  Third, there’s the problem that if the two US players have a relationship which is dysfunctional to the point where they can’t work out their differences, adding a third player to the equation will only make the problem worse because then you’ll have a three-sided argument rather than just a two-sided argument.  And while it may be true that the Soviet player has an interest in both theatres, to me this doesn’t suggest that he would serve as an impartial, disinterested referee; instead, it suggests that he will be motivated to serve his own strategic interests first and those of the US second.  Which is precisely why nations don’t subcontract major policy decisions to the leaders of other nations.



  • Hello CWO Marc.  I fully agree.  A little extra tension on the USA side would both be fun and historically accurate.  …. I bet there were layers upon layers of drama in Washington in late '41 and '42.

    I guess I wasn’t clear on the Russian player’s roll though.  The idea wasn’t to pass the decision to Stalin/Moscow.  It was just to have that player temporarily put on the hat and act in the roll of the President / FDR should the need arise.  However, we didn’t find it necessary to do this in the single game we played.  But I just put that as a suggestion in case someone might be worried that the two USA players entered a heated “deadlock”.  In this case, a 3rd player could put Russia aside for a few minutes and help mediate, acting in the roll of FDR, not Stalin of course!

    At any rate, two moderately experienced players should understand the game enough and get the “big picture” to come to an agreement after some lively discussion.



  • @Ozymandiac:

    Nice to see this thread, as I was thinking about it as well past week. It would be for another setting though. When playing a 2v2 game, it might be nice to split up the Allies into two theatres, Pacific and Europe. It might be a more effective way of dividing the attention of the Allied players.

    To be honest … I’ve thought about doing the same thing with the UK economy.  I think this is where you are going with this right?  There is no reason that UK Europe and UK Pacific have separate “fixed” economies.  It is ALL part of the Crown … with the exception of maybe Canada’s IPCs.

    It would be interesting sometime to have Canada’s IPCs to have to be used to mobilize units on CANADA’s Industrial Complexes.  (This would be controlled by the UK Europe player)  Then, the remaining UK IPC’s should be split as decided between the UK Europe and the UK Pacific commanders on a “Per Round” basis.

    EDIT:  Nice article on just what Canada managed to pump out during WWII.  http://www.canadaatwar.ca/content-17/world-war-ii/canadian-war-industry/

    I’ve never done this though because I was worried how it would effect game balance and historical accuracy. … Most of British production was done in the UK and Canada, not India (Well, not in the form of Lancaster Bombers and Battleships … but India definitely produced lots of troops, small arms and raw materials).   …  It would make it harder for Japan to isolate India (UK Pacific) via Convoys and Strat-Bombs on the Industrial complex though, which would be very nice.


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    @the_jetset:

    I guess I wasn’t clear on the Russian player’s roll though.  The idea wasn’t to pass the decision to Stalin/Moscow.  It was just to have that player temporarily put on the hat and act in the roll of the President / FDR should the need arise.Â

    It’s a fair point that the Soviet player would be temporarily acting as a kind of third US player, in the role of Roosevelt, and not as Stalin.  There would still remain the problem, however, that the two US players might resent having some of their decision-making power taken out of their hands and given to a third player.  They might resent it just as a matter of general principle, and at least one of the players (if not both) will resent whatever decision the Roosevelt player makes because, by definition, the Roosevelt player will have been brought in because the two US players can’t agree on how to divide US resources.  It’s very unlikely that the Roosevelt player will come up with a solution that satisfies both US players because if such an option existed they would probably have found it by themselves.  The more likely outcome is that the Roosevelt player will disappoint one or both of the US players.  If one US player is disappointed, he’ll resent his fellow player and the Roosevelt player.  If both US players are disappointed, they’ll resent each other and the Roosevelt player.  I’m not sure this will make for a happy gaming situation.

    A better solution might be the following one, because it takes the Roosevelt player entirely out of the equation.  Have your house rule say that UNLESS they BOTH agree to do otherwise, each US player will automatically get 50% of the available resources in a given turn.  In other words, the built-in default is that the resources are split half-and-half between the two players…a situation that neither player can describe as being unfair, as much as they each might like to get a bigger percentage of the pie.  IF they BOTH agree to divide things differently in a given turn, for the greater good of the nation as a whole, that should be permitted – and because such a situation can only occur by mutual consent, we once again have a situation that neither player can describe as being unfair.  So one way or the other, both players will feel that matters are being handled fairly, and no third player will share get any blame if the US ends up losing.

    An acquaintance of mine once told me that he gets excellent results from a method that he uses as much as possible when something has to be divided between his two kids – let’s say, a small cake.  The method is very simple: Kid A gets to cut the cake in half, and Kid B gets first choice of which half he takes.  This method is a powerful incentive for Kid A to cut the cake in a scrupulously equal way because he’s the one who’ll end up being short-changed if he strays outside the boundaries of a fifty-fifty split and because he’ll only have himself to blame.


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    A last solution, if 50%-50% share doesn’t suit both US player can be to toss a coin.
    So at least, 1 player can fully conduct his strategy for 1 turn.



  • Wow Baron and Marc.  Both really good and simple ideas.  I think we will adopt one of those methods for breaking a deadlock instead of including the Russian player.  … But we’ve only had 8 players one time.

    I wish I would have found this discussion board a long time ago.  Very cool ideas here.


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