Why axis and allies?

  • Why exactly do you guys choose to spend around 120$ for the full experience of axis and allies when there are other ww2 games that are more complex and simulate the war to a better degree? i understand if you play 1942 which is only around 40 bucks and is a very nice game. but i don’t understand the pull? can you guys tell me what pulls you to 1940 global and what is the attractiveness of the game?

  • 2018 '16

    I have a few responses in no particular order of importance.

    Ease of play. If you can count to 6 your good.

    Easily customizable. You can customize the gameplay model or even paint the sculpts and make your own game boards. We have our developed our own set of rules that engage political and technological events. This was done to simulate some outside effect on the battleplans. Plus we are dorks who used to play a lot of AD&D and we like extra paperwork!!

    For those of us born in the late 70’s (my demographic) it is a familiar game with way more options than we originally had in the 1984 MB release. I started playing in 1990. Global more or less addresses all the wants we every talked about with the original and even the later editions from the 2000’s (AAE, AAP, AArevised).

    The sheer size of the game when set up is amazing and somewhat overwhelming when you get all the pieces on the board.

    It takes time to play this game but the game mechanics don’t bog down like some more advanced simulators (ASL, World in Flames, etc).

    Just my opinions.

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Frankly, I like the large array of little plastic pieces.  The big Global 1940 map is my second-favourite element, but the plastic unit sculpts are the main draw for me.  I credit this to the 1970s movie Midway, one of my most re-watched war films, which features two tabletop map boards (one of them the size of an entire room) on which little ship-shaped wooden markers are used to depict the Japanese and American fleets (plus a few aircraft).  There’s a similar table-and-marker set-up in the film Sink the Bismarck, but the Midway tables and markers are nicer and the film conveys better the concept of naval operations as a complex chess game between the opposing commanders.

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16

    I’d like to hear what WW2 game you like best zombiemaster22 and why? I might then give that a go.

    I like A&A because I feel like I am reliving history and I have made friends with others that play it. But perhaps the most compelling reason is that as a child I loved staging battles between lots of plastic soldiers and am successfully resisting my wife’s calls for me to grow up. 😄

    But none of that means that there are not other games out there which I might prefer. I won’t know until I try them.

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13 Moderator

    Like Sean said, I have been paying since 87, so why change something I have loved and craved all my adult life? We buy the games, because they sell them.

  • Cool looking plastic Tanks, what can I say ?

  • It’s the simplicity and tactile aspect of plastic pieces over counters. Yes, Third Reich, Luftwaffe, Bismarck may offer more realism, but too many details/rules tend to suck the fun out of a game.

    41, 42, Guadalcanal are all great for a quick game (even Risk for that matter), but having more territories of the larger map gives you greater control and a series of bad rolling is less disastrous.
    I played Axis against my son in a quick '42 Sunday this past Sunday afternoon. I rolled about a 95% success rate, I’ve never been that lucky and the game was pretty much over first round. UK was out of Africa (except one infantry) and the Med, U boats and a BB were guarding Gibraltar, Japan eliminated the US fleet at Hawaii and infiltrated China and East Russia and Germany had a solid hold in North Russia. Germany would be a juggernaut pulling in that income before US could mount an assault, all the while trying to catch up to Japan in Naval strength.

    Global offers a great balance of a long term effort without a lot of baggage.

    All that said, the go to game in our house lately is Skull. 4 coasters, doesn’t get easier than that.

  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Those other games suck.

    Usually they have no multi player option
    small puny map with crap (tables, CRT actually taking up map space because the company was too cheap to provide separate player aids)
    Cheesy toilet paper maps usually ( GMT)
    Axis and Allies system is usually similar , so many new people can play with a few minutes explanation.
    Ability to customize ( Painted pieces, larger map, dice, etc)
    More fun to roll lots of dice, rather than one
    Fun factor in general ( Beer and pretzels)- not too old fat people siting, AA is a social game

  • '16 '15 '14 Customizer

    I like the social aspect of it - it is a great game for getting a few guys around a table. When I want more history and detail, I play solitaire computer games like War in the East.

  • Stepping stones…

    I started playing chess when I was 9, later I upgraded to A&A Classic, and now I’m into A&A G40.

    Most importantly I want to play a strategy game, I want to build strategies, I want to execute strategies, I want to move plastic tanks, bombers, and battleships while I’m executing strategies, and I want see my opponent gasp when I beat him with well planed strategies. Other than that… everything Imperious Leader said.

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16


    …. and I want see my opponent gasp when I beat him with well planed strategies.

    I’d like to experience that too! Perhaps one day!  😄

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '13 Moderator

    Dream on, Private!

  • 2018 '16

    Lots of beer can be consumed during this game without effecting game play too much. Need I say more?

  • @seancb:

    Lots of beer can be consumed during this game without effecting game play too much. Need I say more?

    It seems the more Guinness, the bolder the moves.

    I just wish I could roll inverse to pints consumed. I’d rather drink 5 or 6 pints and roll 1s and 2s, but it’s more often the opposite. Unless it research dice, then of course I’m always a low roller.

  • 2018 2017 '16

    At the time that A&A came out there was really nothing like it in the board gaming universe. The other war games used little pieces of cardboard instead of sculpts and many of them had those ridiculous maps that only had hexagons for spaces. Risk was such a popular game at the time that the serious Risk players like me were thrilled when A&A came out. If Risk was like Checkers because every piece was exactly the same, then A&A was Chess with different pieces. It was the best board game of it’s time and it has endured because we all grew up playing it and are familiar with how to play it. Improvements and alternate versions have been released over the years which has kept us from getting bored with the original game.

    Plus, the wicked-ass fully loaded carriers make me harder than Chinese algebra.  😄

  • @GeneralHandGrenade:

    Plus, the wicked-ass fully loaded carriers make me harder than Chinese algebra.  😄

    Quite possibly the most outrageous comment ever made on this site… I LOVE IT!!!

  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    You mean Chinese drywall algebra.

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 '12


    1. Historical,

    2. Strategic,

    3. Plastic miniatures,

    4, Just the the right amount of complexity vs geographic scope,

    5, Rolling Dice, baby!, and, as already said,

    6. Beer drinking is congruent with the game.

    (Actually, there is a lot more to be said here, especially how the Axis and Allies system mitigated one of the great problems of the hex and counter games: total lack of fog of war. I remember the days of playing none other than Blitzkrieg(!), and the game would just end up in a slog/stalemate because you could see exactly what your opponent could do, given the limited movement factors, and thus simply counter his moves, which he couldn’t ever overcome since the luck factor was close to nil.)

  • 1. yeah, but not really. other games do it way better on a similar price point.
    2. fair enough but the games in the similar price range are also strategic….
    3.Ok this is the practically the only thing that the game does right, everyone loves plastic minis.
    4. ok
    5. some people think rolling dice is a negative. but i do enjoy rolling dice.
    6. if you were to drink beer while playing this game you would be dead from alcohol intoxication at the end.( i hope your not drinking it all in one sitting)

    And a game called ‘‘europe engulfed, and asia engulfed’’ has stealth and it covers both theaters.

  • I am only 16.  I started playing at 12.  This is now my most-loved game.  (Favorite version is Global 1940)

    Why do I love it?  I think I can list several things that apply to most of us and me.

    1:  Strategy.  Did you ever play chess and love the strategy but hate how boring it is?  Strategy is almost unlimited here in A&A.  Axis and Allies is a great strategic game with plenty of rules to make things diverse but not too complicated. (Though I still get people complaining about the learning curve).  The dice add a perfect randomness giving replayabillity and no extreme long-term planning.

    2: Plastic miniatures. As a younger child I loved playing with plastic soldiers: “bang bang…sheeeeeeeeeew PUFFFFFFFFFF” Yeah, stuff like that.  I think most of us guys have played with toy soldiers when we were young; this generally has a big impact.  As one A&A gamer said (see Hiew’s boardgaming blog), “Axis and Allies is still my best excuse for playing with toy soldiers.”  Combine this with the great variety and quality of A&A and you get a haven for us.

    3:  Teamwork/competition/social time: Games like 1940 allow up to 6 players and lots of teamwork-inspired situations always arise.  Team games are always my favorite.   The competition is enormous especially when someone gets a lucky or bad role.  There is always someone coming up with a new strategy that gets snatched by everybody else.  A&A takes a while,  which can be annoying, but during that time you spend great hours hanging out with your friends or family.   And everybody knows that competition and teamwork are two greatly-emphasized aspects of gaming on the intimate level.

    4: Dice:  Yes, rolling them is fun, getting lucky is great, and getting unlucky is upsetting (in a humorous way).   There is always that one crazily bizarre role that sends everybody LOL!  And when you do badly you can always blame the dice.  The dice ensure great replayabillity and variety in each game.

    5: History:  I know what you are going to say: A&A is not historically accurate, but that is ok because simulators generally aren’t fun.  The WW2 aspect grabs a lot of us.  It is a well-loved theme by millions of gamers.  Wouldn’t you love to role across the Desert like Rommel reenacting Tobruk?  Or perhaps you don’t want to follow history; maybe there is an alternate history which your strategy works well in.  From the Battle of France to Invasion USA, you can reenact history or do your own thing.

    Well that sums up the general facts.   As my lil’ bro said, “In Axis and Allies I get the thrills of Battlefield, Chess, Monopoly, and little soldiers all at once.”

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16

    Good post CdeG.

    So zombie prefers Europe Engulfed and Asia Engulfed. Has anyone else played those?

  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Yes they suck. Very boring. I played Engulfed about 3 times, Asia partially once. Not alot of room to maneuver since they have less areas to position your forces and complicated somewhat.

    The damm turn takes long time and not much going on except going thru the rules to check things…alot.

  • …and even worse, Engulf dont have plastic Tanks…

  • 2017 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    And painted tanks look alot better than mono painted blocks!

  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16



    The damm turn takes long time and not much going on except going thru the rule to check things…alot

    It’s a good job we all focus on a game that is so quick and easy to play!

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