In defense of total annihilation victory rules to balance OOB setup



  • My buddy and I have recently been playing G40 OOB rules but with the condition that both the Axis and the Allies have to achieve total annihilation for victory.

    This is our second game with these new rules and the observations are intersting. Despite huge gains by the Axis in the first 10 rounds, the Allies looked poised for victory. (Paused in round 13).

    Japan has been a monster in this game. They executed a flawless J1 and used it to springboard into Asia. I believe they took Calcutta J5, Moscow J9, Sydney J11 and Honolulu J13. Using OOB victory conditions the Axis have had this game won for awhile now.

    But, uh oh. Here come the Allies.

    Knowing that Japan couldn’t simply VC win in the Pacific, the Allies decided to take on the side of the board where they could put boots on the ground. For 4 turns the US patiently built a defended 4 transport shuck to Gibralter and ultimately Normandy. Starting US5 they were dropping 8 units there every turn and being reinforced by UK men from London. The Axis just couldn’t counter this landing, lest the Russians hit back. The US kept the Pacific starting fleet at Hawaii and supplemented it when it could.

    Despite the all out Normandy push by the Allies, Western Germany was incredibly difficult to take. Only then could the US step back to liberate Paris. They needed that forward factory to eventually take Berlin.

    Once Berlin fell it was US/UK/FRA vs Japan. At this point Japan has all of the Pacific islands that matter, including their strategic defence perimeter NO. They have all of China and many non-mongolian bordering Russian territories. They have all of Australia. They are producing in Moscow, they have a factory producing in Caucuses. They have factories in Iraq and Persia with an airbase and naval base there with a fleet in SZ80. Next turn they will have enough to wipe out the US fleet off of San Francisco. They are threatening landings in Africa.

    Despite this, in looking at the board it appears the Allies are soon going to overwhelm Japan in the West, which is the only place they can make new gains. It appears the Allies will absolutely win this game.

    I’ll post pictures later of the game on pause if I can.

    Also, once France was back in the game they started a back and forth transport shuck from SZ93 to SZ98. First turn they picked up leftover dudes in algeria and sent them to Egypt. They kept building 2 land units and maybe a boat a turn in Southern france. Now they have 6 dudes and 3 tanks in Trans-Jordan and a fleet sitting in 98 consisting of 3 destroyers a sub and wait for it….

    A loaded (Tac & ftr) carrier. Maybe they’ll buy a battleship lololol.



  • The main problem with this is that it makes the game even more unbearably long.



  • No question. We have the luxury of keeping the board up for extended periods of time. I think we’re at 20+ hours so far in this game. Granted thats at a very leisurely pace.


  • 2018 2016

    Sounds like fun! I have always wanted to play one to complete death.



  • Indeed, this is the funnest way to play, and I believe it give the Allies the bonus they need to make balance nearly perfect.

    But the problem is very few people are as crazy as us about alternate scenarios; they want to play ten hours, proclaim who is obviously winning, than start over again next week.  A lot of people get the chess mentality: “If I know I am going to lose, it is the polite thing to surrender.”  Of course, there are those crazy games where everything goes haywire and Germany is in India, ANZAC in Arabia, and France is alive.  In this case, playing it out to the death can be the most memorable game ever.  It’s like playing an alternate history of the world.

    In my opinion, scrap the rules of victory and just play until you are bored, out of time, or ideally one side obviously has the upper hand.

    Ah, I remember the days when Washington D.C. fell on the same turn that Berlin did.  It was crazy fun when we were awful at this game.  😄



  • It’s giving us more of a perspective on the late late game which is uncharted territory. Some new house rules may need to apply. In this game since Germany and Russia are out Japan should somehow be able to build factories on territories that Germany may have first conquered in Russia.



  • This makes the game way to easy for the allies.
    Who cares about japan really, just kill germany first, once they are gone and russia is back on its feet turn around.
    Japan can only realisicly get to 90 ish income.
    US will be around 80, UK 50, france (lol 17) Russia (50 ish )

    Russia is strong enough to start clearing japan from the mainland, aided by china once they are liberated and UK-pac.

    UK + US having a decent fleet already sail into the pacific and start clearing japan from islands removing NO’s and liberating anzac.

    With 2-1 income the allies will win.



  • I think the fairest way to play is that Axis powers must dominate “main land” Earth. So capture mainland Europe, Africa, and mainland Asia or simply everyone but ANZAC and US.

    The problem I had with Axis victory with Global is that you can win the entire Axis objective on Europe or Asia but not both so it looks weird to see something like Germany and Italy successfully captured France, USSR, and Egypt while the allies are having a victory parade in Tokyo. That’s an Axis win when actually the Allies are still able to continue their war effect and this works both ways. Japan controls India, ANZAC, China, and are about to invade US by controlling all of their islands while USSR and the West are setting up control sectors in Germany and Italy for the coming Cold War. This is also Axis victory. Simply put, if the Allies require total conquest of the Axis powers then the only fair response is that Axis needs to hold both victory conditions on both sides of Earth.


  • 2017

    Total annihilation victory conditions is of course “historical” for those who care about that, LOL!

    This could be play tested in triplea where it’s easy to save files and continue at a later time. I still lose OOB no bid games as the Axis (I suck at this game); perhaps I’d not be a good annihilation victory game “play tester.”

    If Allies, I too would try for a KGF game.

    In the Pacific, I imagine a strategy similar to the original poster’s. Spend a little bit to add to the Pacific and try to shuck 2 ground to Hawaii every round (GHG’s idea). I’d hope that amount wouldn’t be so much as to really offset a US offensive on Germany/Italy.

    What’s fun about a total annihilation game idea is that it doesn’t matter if Hawaii is captured. The US could return! The US Pacific fleet could escape to Panama then the Atlantic and re-enter after the US is done in Europe. But leave all Pacific fighters on Hawaii (to add defense strength to the stuff that was shucked). Just build a ton of ground on the US mainland at the right moment (maybe the turn before you expect Hawaii to get captured) while re-building enough naval in the Caribbean to re-enter.


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

    Here’s a thought: rather than playing for total annihilation, what if the Axis were playing for victory conditions based on the theories of geopolitics that were popular at the time of WWII?  Those theories divided the world into three regions, and they stated that directly ruling one region meant indirectly dominating the next region; by that theory, it was possible to command the world without necessarily conquering the whole planet.  I’ve quoted the basic relavant points below.

    –-----------------------

    According to Halford John Mackinder, the Earth’s land surface was divisible into:

    The World-Island, comprising the interlinked continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa. This was the largest, most populous, and richest of all possible land combinations.

    The offshore islands, including the British Isles and the islands of Japan.

    The outlying islands, including the continents of North America, South America, and Australia.

    The Heartland lay at the centre of the world island, stretching from the Volga to the Yangtze and from the Himalayas to the Arctic. Mackinder’s Heartland was the area then ruled by the Russian Empire and after that by the Soviet Union, minus the Kamchatka Peninsula region, which is located in the easternmost part of Russia, near the Aleutian Islands and Kurile islands.

    Later, in 1919, Mackinder summarised his theory as:

    “Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland;
    who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island;
    who rules the World-Island commands the world.”
    (Mackinder, Democratic Ideals and Reality, p. 150)

    Any power which controlled the World-Island would control well over 50% of the world’s resources. The Heartland’s size and central position made it the key to controlling the World-Island.


  • 2017

    If (in the game) the Axis controlled all of continental Asia, Europe, and Africa … then (in all practical scenarios) aren’t they ultimately going to win a total annihilation game at that point?


  • 2019 2017 2016

    I’ve been advocating this (total annihilation) for a long time.

    The Victory Cities rule, I’m guessing, exists for those who find the game too long.  I suppose this is understandable if you’re playing in person and have to finish within a tight time frame.  However, if you’re playing online there’s nothing wrong with playing an exceptionally long game.  It’s epic, in fact.

    As someone mentioned, total annihilation is more realistic.  When I first started playing AAA online I was in a game as the Allies.  Rome had fallen.  Berlin was literally surrounded on all sides.  However, Japan had India.  Because I was a newbie, and have always played total annihilation with my friends in person, I failed to take into consideration that all Japan had to do was send one little transport to Hawaii and the game was over.  I’m still bitter about that  😄  But really, what the hell?  The Axis were for all points and purposes dead, yet they won.

    Also, “total annihilation” doesn’t preclude anyone from throwing in the towel once it’s obvious he has no chance, so games don’t necessarily have to be that long.

    Open question:  If playing total annihilation, do the Allies still need a bid, or perhaps just a smaller bid?  I’ll let the more experienced players answer that.


  • 2018 2017

    Its really true different groups play a different kind of game, triple a, tournament, at the game store, at home, etc…

    You can play with YG conditions, or change those, for G40, G41, G42 etc., come up with your own house version.  Reducing the VCs to points means you can determine any ending time/condition you like.



  • @StuckTojo:

    Open question:  If playing total annihilation, do the Allies still need a bid, or perhaps just a smaller bid?  I’ll let the more experienced players answer that.

    Under these new conditions Allies are 2-0. Small sample I know. Maybe Axis need the bid haha.


  • 2017

    @StuckTojo:

    Open question: If playing total annihilation, do the Allies still need a bid, or perhaps just a smaller bid?

    I expect that total annihilation would favor Allies … but, if played enough, new strategies could emerge that decide the balance.



  • Well the OOB rules for victory when compared to a total annihilation victory do work together.

    Think of the OOB rules for victory as the benchmark or middle point of the war.

    The game moves into turn 12.

    Axis have not even sniffed getting the OOB victory conditions taken care of. Is there any question that the Allies will not win?

    New game, we go to turn 10. Axis Europe have all of Russia and moving on Cairo. Japan has Calcutta and moving on ANZAC. � Well now we have a game if the victory is total annihilation.

    So the OOB victory conditions are a good bench mark. OOB rules basically just stop the total war at the mid point. Axis have no chance to achieve victory and they concede. Total annihilation rules do not change this out come if the Axis are just stomped and cannot achieve even the meager OOB Victory conditions.

    We can all agree that if the Axis do not achieve at least the OOB victory conditions then it is pointless to carry it out to the final conclusion of Total Annihilation, which I alluded to early is a worthless victory condition for the Allies.

    If there is any “beef” with the OOB victory rules it is that the Allies have to accomplish total annihilation to win and the Axis just have to reach X Victory points to win.

    NOW

    This is the main issue with all WWII games. Axis start strong, blow up the Allies, they either win outright basically or get dragged into a prolonged middle game struggle when the balance is at its zenith, usually 2-4 turns in A&A. IF the Allies tip the balance, Axis have no chance, the game is over.

    I propose then a different victory condition on the Allies.

    We use OOB rules, Allies must take Berlin, Rome and Tokyo.

    The Allies must achieve this goal by the end of turn 30. IF they fail to do this the “game” is called a draw.

    The Axis are definitely under the gun of “time”, they have a finite amount of turns to accomplish their goals to win a OOB game. Why do the Allies not have the same constraint?

    Lets remember we are playing a game not real life. I think the victory conditions should be some what equal in a game. If we are going to put the Axis under this “gun” of you have to win in under X turns and then the tide turns then why should the Allies not be under the same “gun” that they have to defeat the Axis in under X turns or the game is a draw.

    It is a GAME.



  • Totally get what you are saying here, PainState. I originally started this thread to highlight how far past the OOB victory conditions the Axis went and still lost the game. Which would imply that those rules are somewhat broken.


  • 2017

    @CWO:

    Here’s a thought: rather than playing for total annihilation, what if the Axis were playing for victory conditions based on the theories of geopolitics that were popular at the time of WWII?  Those theories divided the world into three regions, and they stated that directly ruling one region meant indirectly dominating the next region; by that theory, it was possible to command the world without necessarily conquering the whole planet.  I’ve quoted the basic relavant points below.

    –-----------------------

    According to Halford John Mackinder, the Earth’s land surface was divisible into:

    The World-Island, comprising the interlinked continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa. This was the largest, most populous, and richest of all possible land combinations.

    The offshore islands, including the British Isles and the islands of Japan.

    The outlying islands, including the continents of North America, South America, and Australia.

    The Heartland lay at the centre of the world island, stretching from the Volga to the Yangtze and from the Himalayas to the Arctic. Mackinder’s Heartland was the area then ruled by the Russian Empire and after that by the Soviet Union, minus the Kamchatka Peninsula region, which is located in the easternmost part of Russia, near the Aleutian Islands and Kurile islands.

    Later, in 1919, Mackinder summarised his theory as:

    “Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland;
    who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island;
    who rules the World-Island commands the world.”
    (Mackinder, Democratic Ideals and Reality, p. 150)

    Any power which controlled the World-Island would control well over 50% of the world’s resources. The Heartland’s size and central position made it the key to controlling the World-Island.

    CWO, at least for me, in the games I play, this is a de facto occurrence. Once the axis for instance gain control of most the “World-Island,” it’s very difficult to turn the tide.



  • I think the Allies’ requirement of holding the Axis capitols makes sense. It’s based on reality with FDR’s Unconditional Surrender doctrine. It also makes sense that the same requirement isn’t needed for the Axis, since a negotiated peace is what they were after. But as long as the Allies are still capable of defeating the Axis, they would fight on. For this, perhaps the victory conditions needs to be maintained for 3 turns. If the Axis can consolidate it for multiple turns…if the Allies are unable to dislodge the Axis after said number of turns, perhaps they would negotiate a peace agreement, which would be an Axis victory.

    This makes for a game that isn’t as long as Total Annihilation…

    That being said, Japan should be required to hold the west coast of mainland U.S. for victory in the Pacific.



  • Savage,
    The idea of forcing the Axis to hold their objectives for a few turns sounds perfect in respect to gameplay, history, and balance.  The question is how many turns?



  • @Charles:

    Savage,
    The idea of forcing the Axis to hold their objectives for a few turns sounds perfect in respect to gameplay, history, and balance.  The question is how many turns?

    The Allies’(technically, it was ONLY FDR who wanted this) doctrine of Unconditional Surrender–or face annihilation–was because the Allies already knew they were going to win. Summer of 1942 the U.S. Navy was the largest and most powerful in the pacific. Just 6 months after Pearl Harbor the U.S. was stronger than Japan in the Pacific with navy and air. By December of 1942 Germany’s last strategic initiative on the Eastern Front would wind to a halt due to it’s second Russian Winter in a row(which was Germany’s last). At this point Germany could not recover it’s losses and Japan was even in worse shape. The following month(Jan. 1943) we have the Unconditional Surrender policy. Despite having 2.5 years left of hard fighting, the outcome was NEVER in question at this point. The Allies will impose their will even if the Axis countries face total annihilation–and the Allies knew they could do it…

    The difficulty lies in the Axis victory. The game starts 1940, 2 years before knowing for sure the outcome, so the Allies aren’t so bold at this point. They know the Axis could win. So at what point do the Allies say they can’t defeat the Axis and agree to terms? There comes a time when they realize they just can’t defeat this Axis Machine, even if London and Washington are safe. At what point do the Allies concede? In reality it would be when they realize that the Axis just can’t be stopped. For gaming purposes, I have the least amount of actual playing time than anyone here, but to lose because someone wasn’t paying attention and got out of position, when they still have the capacity for victory…

    We could say 3 turns. Definately not less than 3


  • 2019 2017 2016

    I think 2 would be ok.

    Losing because 2 inf stepped on Hawaii when you don’t have any transports in SZ10 is pretty bad. It’s really only in the Pacific that there’s any issue. I don’t think there’s a problem with holding for one turn in Europe.



  • The OOB rules have the axis and allies playing two different games IMO. The Axis play for a VC win, and the Allies are playing the longer annihilation game (must take all 3 axis capitals, that’s going to take a while lol). That’s why the allies rarely win OOB, and a bid is often used. Seems to me that the bids don’t necessarily allow the allies to win in the short term, but rather we are placing units on the board to stop the axis from achieving their victory in the first 10 rounds. This gives the allies time to where they can over power the axis at some point (forcing an annihilation game).

    I’m not a fan of the axis VC win, because as pointed out it can be a cheap way to win the game that you have invested many hours into.  Besides that, I also don’t like how the axis can completely sell out one side to gain victory on the other. Like when the Japanese buzz Moscow with their entire air force just to take out a few Russian inf allowing the Germans to take it when they wouldn’t have had a chance otherwise. To add insult to injury the Japanese have also bypassed India/Middle East and their transport fleet goes over to attack Egypt for the last VC on the Europe map (if just to soften it up). Boom game over, but the Japanese have basically lost all holding and objectives on the Pac map (with exception of Tokyo).

    However, on the other hand the axis VC victory conditions are set-up so the allies have to play on both sides of the map somewhat. If that wasn’t in place then the allies could spend all income on one side, totally ignoring the other w/o consequence. Once one of the major axis powers are gone (Germany or Japan) then there really isn’t much hope for the other.

    In my opinion the VC condition should be amended to encompass more of a global game. You need to make sure that the axis can’t sell out one side to win on the other. Not sure if this would be enough, but maybe a stipulation that in order for the axis to win on one side, they also need to hold 1/2 the number of needed VC’s for a win on the other. Like an 8 VC win on the Euro side would require the Japanese to also hold a min of 3 VC’s on the Pac side (1/2 of their own VC victory conditions). Likewise for a Pac win the Japanese would need 6 VC’s on the Pac side, and the Euro twins would need to hold 4 VC in Europe (1/2 of the Europe win VC condition). This way you could be kick-n butt on one side, but holding par on the other. This would also give the allies a chance to stop a win on say the Euro side by taking a VC on the on either side.

    You could also give the axis a world victory goal of say 13 VCs for the win (maybe 14 for longer game). This way they would basically be able to get to a VC win on one side, but would also have to hold on to certain assets on the other side as well (no sell outs). Stipulate that the axis must also hold at least 1 allied capital to win (London, DC, Moscow, or Paris). I threw in Paris so that it might force the allies to liberate it!

    I would also like to see a World VC count for the allies to win as well. Not sure what that number should be, but lets say 15 VC (leaves the axis with only 4 VC’s left). Stipulate that for the allies to win w/15 VC’s they must also hold at least 1 Axis capital (Berlin, Rome, or Tokyo).



  • What I’m noticing is that if we throw the VC rules completely out there will still come a time within 12-15 rounds that one side will have tipped the scales of the world map and will inevitably be pushing back on all fronts. Even though it would take an additional dozen turns to fully wipe the enemy out, the side getting pushed back would concede. The writing is very clearly on the wall once the scales have tipped.


  • 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 '14 Customizer '13

    @WILD:

    The OOB rules have the axis and allies playing two different games IMO. The Axis play for a VC win, and the Allies are playing the longer annihilation game (must take all 3 axis capitals, that’s going to take a while lol). That’s why the allies rarely win OOB, and a bid is often used. Seems to me that the bids don’t necessarily allow the allies to win in the short term, but rather we are placing units on the board to stop the axis from achieving their victory in the first 10 rounds. This gives the allies time to where they can over power the axis at some point (forcing an annihilation game).

    I’m not a fan of the axis VC win, because as pointed out it can be a cheap way to win the game that you have invested many hours into.  Besides that, I also don’t like how the axis can completely sell out one side to gain victory on the other. Like when the Japanese buzz Moscow with their entire air force just to take out a few Russian inf allowing the Germans to take it when they wouldn’t have had a chance otherwise. To add insult to injury the Japanese have also bypassed India/Middle East and their transport fleet goes over to attack Egypt for the last VC on the Europe map (if just to soften it up). Boom game over, but the Japanese have basically lost all holding and objectives on the Pac map (with exception of Tokyo).

    However, on the other hand the axis VC victory conditions are set-up so the allies have to play on both sides of the map somewhat. If that wasn’t in place then the allies could spend all income on one side, totally ignoring the other w/o consequence. Once one of the major axis powers are gone (Germany or Japan) then there really isn’t much hope for the other.

    In my opinion the VC condition should be amended to encompass more of a global game. You need to make sure that the axis can’t sell out one side to win on the other. Not sure if this would be enough, but maybe a stipulation that in order for the axis to win on one side, they also need to hold 1/2 the number of needed VC’s for a win on the other. Like an 8 VC win on the Euro side would require the Japanese to also hold a min of 3 VC’s on the Pac side (1/2 of their own VC victory conditions). Likewise for a Pac win the Japanese would need 6 VC’s on the Pac side, and the Euro twins would need to hold 4 VC in Europe (1/2 of the Europe win VC condition). This way you could be kick-n butt on one side, but holding par on the other. This would also give the allies a chance to stop a win on say the Euro side by taking a VC on the on either side.

    You could also give the axis a world victory goal of say 13 VCs for the win (maybe 14 for longer game). This way they would basically be able to get to a VC win on one side, but would also have to hold on to certain assets on the other side as well (no sell outs). Stipulate that the axis must also hold at least 1 allied capital to win (London, DC, Moscow, or Paris). I threw in Paris so that it might force the allies to liberate it!

    I would also like to see a World VC count for the allies to win as well. Not sure what that number should be, but lets say 15 VC (leaves the axis with only 4 VC’s left). Stipulate that for the allies to win w/15 VC’s they must also hold at least 1 Axis capital (Berlin, Rome, or Tokyo).

    Agree. That’s why in my 40 game I’m been playing with victory city points with added city’s and gives the axis 4 ways to win. Axis has to do this in a certain amount of time to get 30 points for a win. After so many turns you’ll be able to see it will not be an axis win. Other way I’ve have done it is axis needs 13 VC by the end of turn 10. Other wise allies win.

    GHG is play testing or toying with adding a few VC to 40 OOB game do the axis needs to win on both sides.


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