• 2023 '22 '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    UPDATE: Balanced Mod is live on TripleA! Download the map from the bottom of the “Good Maps” section if you want to try it.



    Third draft based on feedback from everyone and playtests with @axis_roll – thank you for commenting!

    The conventional wisdom is that A&A 50th Anniversary Edition, 1941 Scenario requires a large bid for the Allies, so I thought I’d try my hand at creating an alternate set of national objectives that could balance the game not by giving the Allies a large up-front gift of units, but by giving the Allies a chance to develop a mighty economy that can turn the tides of war in the middle-game. The goal is to have some more adrenaline and some more asymmetry in the game play – the Axis will expand very rapidly in the first few turns, but they’ll need to shut down most of the Allied NOs as part of their initial expansion, or else they’re likely to get crushed around turn 7 or 8 by the Allied rebound. I’ve also slightly changed China’s starting setup (and some of the Chinese movement/income rules) to make China more relevant. Note that the Turkish Straits / Black Sea are considered open for both ships and planes for all players.

    It’s not required, but I recommend adding the air interception rules from Global 1940’s Balanced Mod: fighters escort and intercept strategic bombing raids using one die per fighter that hits an enemy plane on a 2 or less, and strategic bombers roll one die per bomber that hits an enemy plane on a 1 or less if they are challenged by interceptors. Strategic bombers that make it through any interceptors and/or flak to roll damage should deal 1d6 + 1 points of damage to a factory, not 1d6: so if you roll a 3, you deal 4 points of damage to the factory. This makes bombing a little more attractive against unguarded factories, but much less attractive against a factory with a proper air force defending it.

    You could also throw in Marines from Global 1940 Balanced Mod if you like; I don’t think it would make much difference either way to the game play.

    Let me know what you think! All comments welcome. :-)


    • Scandinavian Iron – 5 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of: Norway, Finland, and NW Europe
    • Operation Barbarossa – 5 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of: Karelia, Ukraine, Caucasus
    • Secure Rumanian Oil – 3 IPCs if Axis control Romania and there are no Allied planes in the Balkans, Ukraine, Sea Zone 15, or Sea Zone 16.
    • Eurasian Wheat – 3 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of East Poland, Belorussia, and East Ukraine
    • Archangel-Astrakhan Line – 3 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of: Archangel, Moscow, and Kazakh


    • Northern Lend-Lease – 3 IPCs after the start of turn 2 if Allies control Archangel with no Axis ships in SZ 3 or 4
    • Southern Lend-Lease – 3 IPCs after the start of turn 2 if Allies control Persia & Caucasus w/ no Axis ships in SZ 34
    • Eastern Lend-Lease – 3 IPCs after the start of turn 2 if Allies control SFE & Yakutsk w/ no Axis ships in SZ 63


    • Chinese Coastline – 3 IPCs if Axis control Manchuria, Kiangsu, Fukien, Kwantung, and French Indochina
    • Chinese Hegemony – 3 IPCs if Axis control literally all Chinese territories
    • Bornese Oil – 3 IPCs if Axis control Borneo and no Allied warships anywhere in SZ 49, 50, 60, 61, or 62
    • Javanese Rubber – 3 IPCs if Axis control East Indies and no Allied warships anywhere in SZ 38, 49, 50, 60, 61, or 62
    • Central Pacific Islands – 3 IPCs if Axis control 4+ of Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Midway, Wake, Carolines, Hawaii
    • Co-Prosperity Sphere – 3 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of India, Australia, Hawaii, Yakut SSR


    • North Atlantic – 3 IPCs if Allies control E. Canada, Greenland, and Iceland with no Axis ships in SZs 1 through 9.
    • Mediterranean Route – 3 IPCs if Allies control Gibraltar and Egypt with no Axis warships in SZ 13, 14, 15, or 16.
    • Soft Underbelly – 3 IPCs if UK or USA has at least one land unit in Italy, the Balkans, or Romania.
    • Indian Empire – 5 IPCs if Allies control India, Madagascar, and South Africa with no Axis ships in SZs 28 through 35.
    • ANZAC – 5 IPCs if Allies control Australia, New Zealand, New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands.


    • Vichy Collaboration – 3 IPCs if Axis control France, Morocco, and Libya
    • Mare Nostrum – 3 IPCs if there are no Allied ships in SZs 13, 14, 15, 16 and at least one Italian ship in SZ 13-16
    • Abyssinian Adventure – 3 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of Sudan, Italian East Africa, Rhodesia
    • Mideastern Oil – 5 IPCs if Axis control 2+ of Egypt, Trans-Jordan, Persia, Caucasus


    • Arsenal of Democracy – 5 IPCs after the start of turn 3 if Allies control Western US, Central US, and Eastern US
    • Manifest Destiny – 5 IPCs after the start of turn 3 if Allies control Mexico, Panama, Hawaii, and Alaska
    • South Atlantic – 2 IPCs if Allies control West Indies and Brazil with no Axis warships in SZ 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, or 19
    • Operation Torch – 3 IPCs if America has a land unit or flag in both Morocco and Libya
    • Operation Overlord – 5 IPCs if USA has land units both NW Europe and France
    • Alcor Aluminum – 2 IPCs if Allies control Australia, Solomon Islands, Hawaii, and Western US
    • Central Pacific Islands – 3 IPCs if Allies control 4+ of Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Midway, Wake, Carolines, Hawaii
    • MacArthur was a Donkey – 5 IPCs if Allies control the Philippines
    • West Pacific Airstrips – 5 IPCs if Allies control 3+ of Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Formosa, Manchuria, Buryatia


    • Burma Road – +1 Chinese artillery for any Chinese-owned territory if Allies control India, Burma, and Yunnan
      ** Setup Change – Sikang starts the game with 1 infantry, 1 fighter. Yunnan starts with (only) 2 infantry.
      ** Movement Change – Chinese troops may move into Burma, French Indochina, and/or Kwangtung.
      ** Income Change – China receives all reinforcements based on the map after combat, just like other nations.

    (Edited per axisroll’s comments about needing more relative weight in the Pacific)
    (Thanks to Baron Munchhausen for suggesting addition of Greenland)
    (Tweaked Russian and UK objectives to be somewhat harder based on playtests with Corpo24)
    (Special thanks to axisroll for playtesting these with me for two full games!)
    (There are minor changes to the German and British objectives based on recent feedback, which have now been copied as version 1.1 on TripleA. Please make sure you and your opponents are playing with the same version! Version 1.0 has only 3 German objectives instead of 5, and it contains an error in the Russian Southern Lend-Lease objective.)

  • Crush Germany! There’s not many/enough incentives for a Pacific war for USA (or UK, for that matter).
    Question: a “Ship” is anything that floats? In other words, doesn’t have to be a surface vessel… subs and transports are considered to be ships in your rules.

  • @axis_roll Hmm, still not enough Pacific incentives in this Mod for you? That’s interesting. I’ve thrown in Vladivostok lend-lease, the Burma Road, an ANZAC objective for the UK, the ability for Japan to shut down a US NO by taking Alaska, and the ability for the Allies to shut down a Japanese NO by sneaking a sub into the west Pacific. Going Kill Japan First should be more viable in general with a stronger China and with a higher USA income that lets you rapidly built a fleet that dominates Japan’s fleet. What else could/should I add? I’m happy to add a couple more Pacific NOs if you can think of any that make sense.

    And, yes, “ships” means anything that floats, even a lowly transport. Sink it all to show that you’ve got control of the sea lanes! I could be talked out of including transports (“warships?”), but subs should definitely be included.

    Want to play sometime? By e-mail, maybe?

  • I guess I was looking at how much the allies can make, somewhat easily IMHO, in Europe. When they do this, they will also be eliminating the Axis NOs. Of course, this is just my initial take on a single read basis, and I figured you’ve put some thought into this more than I have, so I am probably missing some points (as you indicate). I need to think further about this before more commenting, and yes, game play is the only way to truly see how good ANY rule modification(s) is/are.

    Things I haven’t thought about: No allied bid. Surely that will affect things early. Not being a big fan of the OOB tech, I would prefer no tech here, but do you have a preference. Some house rules are better when techs are in play, some are worse…

  • 2023 '22 '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    Nah, I wrote this stuff more or less off the cuff! Obviously you know I’ve been thinking about the underlying issues for a while, but it’s not like this particular set of rules is super-well-thought-out. I’m more than happy to shift some income around from the Europe side to the Pacific side. Maybe the Atlantic subs NO for the UK should be 3 IPCs, and the ANZAC NO should be 5 IPCs – it’s an easy tweak that gets the balance b/w theaters a little closer. Similarly, we could cut the USA bonus for north Africa down to 3 IPCs, and maybe add another NO for the USA in the Pacific. Something like…3 IPCs if the USA owns Formosa and has land units in Formosa, Iwo Jima, or Okinawa? I’d rather over-correct in favor of the Pacific, anyway.

    And, yeah, probably no tech – I’d prefer to focus on these NOs for the first game, see how they play out, keep it simple.

  • 2023 '22 '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    All right, I edited this to shift some of the IPCs from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Let me know how you like the changes!

  • With the holidays, it’s a busy week to give this some serious thought. My gaming group meets for a black Friday game every year. I will print out the latest of your thoughts here and we will talk about your ideas. I hope to offer some feedback here before the weekend is up, but no promises.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  • @Argothair said in Balanced Mod [Anniversary 41]:

    5 IPCs if Axis control Norway and NW Europe and there is at least 1 Axis ship in SZ 5 or 6

    I will post this one thought, since I usually play Germany, this seems like a very difficult NA to achieve.

    How about something like this?

    5 IPCs if Axis control either {Norway or Finland} and NW Europe
    least 1 Axis ship in SZ 5 or SZ6 ~or~ no allied ships in SZ5 or SZ6

  • @axis_roll Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your games, and I’ll be grateful for your group’s thoughts whenever they’re ready.

    Re: the German Scandinavian NO, I agree with your general point, but your specific alternative feels a little fussy to me. What about:

    Axis control 2+ of NW Europe, Norway, and Finland; and no Allied warships in SZ 6.

    The only Allied sub that starts in the Atlantic is the Russian sub, which often does in the SZ 2 battle anyway, so in the early game it should be relatively easy to keep allied boats out of the Baltic, because the whole Germany navy can hit them. Similarly, if you’re not at least trading Finland and NW Europe most turns as Germany, you have bigger problems than worrying about your NOs.

  • @Argothair Apologies for not replying as I had hoped. Our gaming group had such a good game ongoing, we never really got to talk about your proposed changes.

    Also I have been way too busy to give this the level of thought that I wished. Perhaps in the upcoming time frame before Christmas.

  • '17 '16


    I like your wider range of NOs.
    While thinking about the Axis bias of AA50, I came about a way to delay Germany’s punching blitz. Since you probably played more than me on this map, you might have a good feel about: how far this change might set the balance right within the OOB NOs?

    One thing which differs in AA50 is Tank cost at 5 IPCs instead of 6 IPCs.
    What do you think if people use 1941 game Tank sculpts to allow two types of Tank in AA50?
    Starting setup Tank would be weaker mostly impacting Germany while players may chose to purchase either a 5 or 6 IPCs Tank according to their taste and money at hands.

    I’m thinking about:
    Heavy Tank
    1941’s Tiger Tank sculpt for Axis or IL2 Tank for Russia & Allies
    Attack 3 (power*hit ratio: 3.00)
    Defense 3 (3.00)
    Move 2
    Cost 6
    1 hit

    Medium Tank
    OOB AA50 Panther for Germany and T34 Soviet Tank for instance
    Attack 2 (2.88)
    Defense 2 (2.88)
    Move 2
    Cost 5
    1 hit

    6 Medium Tanks A2 D2 C5 for A12 D12 punch
    are about same strength (just slightly weaker) than
    5 Heavy Tanks A3 D3 C6 for A15 D15.

    Power*hit ratio is obtained:
    Arbitrary unit reference cost^2 * unit strength value / unit cost^2
    36 (6 IPCs Tank used) * 3 / 5 IPCs ^2 = 2.88 for Medium Tank

    If people just want to add historical depth (or an AA MB Classic feel) into their AA50 and use your NOs, Medium Tank can be adjust like this:
    Medium Tank
    OOB AA50 Panther for Germany and T34 Soviet Tank for instance
    Attack 2 (2.88) 3 when paired 1:1 with Infantry (4.50)
    Defense 2 (2.88)
    Move 2
    Cost 5
    1 hit

  • For cost and punch I get
    6 med tanks C30 A11.52. D11.52
    5 h tanks. C30. A10.00 D10.00
    Yes the med tank is slightly weaker alone against a h tank but stronger with more quantity.
    5 med tanks C25. A9.60
    5 h tanks. C30. A10.00

  • '17 '16

    @SS-GEN said in Balanced Mod [Anniversary 41]:

    For cost and punch I get
    6 med tanks C30 A11.52. D11.52
    5 h tanks. C30. A10.00 D10.00
    Yes the med tank is slightly weaker alone against a h tank but stronger with more quantity.
    5 med tanks C25. A9.60
    5 h tanks. C30. A10.00

    Hi SS,
    are you using the attack factor suggested above?
    6 Med Tank A2 will get A12, why 11.52?
    5 Heavy Tank A3, A15, why A10?

    One on one, of course Heavy A3 (50%) get a better odds for a hit against Medium Tank D2 (33.3%).

    I double checked with AACalc and Heavy is slightly better on same 30 IPCs basis:
    53% vs 44%.

    Maybe you were telling me that power* hit ratio is not the same than our excel file?
    You are right on that point because I just skipped the odds calculation out of formula above and used a different benchmark unit 6 IPCs Tank (36 *) instead of a 12 IPCs Cruiser (144 *), as in Excel file.
    According to our Excel file:
    Medium Tank is 2/6 odds, or .333 * 144/5^2 = 1.92
    Heavy Tank is 3/6 odds, or 0.500 * 144/6^2 = 2.00

    To actually calculate and compare two stacks strength during a game :
    5 Heavy A3 D3 are A15 pips for 5 hits = 75 pips * hits
    6 Med Tank A2 D2 are A12 pips for 6 hits = 72 pips * hits
    Meaning Heavys are a better purchase option.

    When using Excel File digits which give a single number, you have to take the number for itself to get which unit is better on a same IPCs basis.
    So, a 2.00 is always more optimal than 1.92.

  • I’m going by excel and for the cost it shows me med 6 vs 5 h is cheaper and has 1 more fodder. Then if my numbers are wrong then the excell sheet is wrong because we based every thing off that over the year. Never have put in that 6 or 36 thing. Just sayin

  • @Argothair This game’s fairly balanced as long as you play it without National Objectives (that are optional). The only issue is that, without the added income from NOs, bomber spamming with Americans becomes almost mandatory, for being supereffective.

  • I’m out of this discussion. Ain’t jamming it up.

  • 2023 '22 '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16

    @baron-Münchhausen Baron, I know you are deeply passionate about the mathematical details of custom unit stats, but that’s not what I wanted to talk about here – I wanted to discuss an alternate set of national objectives.

    Many people would agree with you that German tanks are overpowered in Anniversary 1941, but my personal opinion is that the 5-IPC tanks work just fine on this map…the problem with the map is that it is difficult and unrewarding to try to stop Japan from quickly exploding into a very large sphere of influence that includes all of Australia, India, the Pacific islands, western China, and Siberia. The Allies just don’t start with enough pieces in the Pacific theater to put up a credible opposition, and if the USA goes 100% Pacific to try to compensate then it is easy for the USA to wind up collecting ~45 IPCs / turn while Japan is earning ~50 IPCs / turn, which feels weird. With no bid, you can’t safely build a factory in Australia OR India even if you put 100% of your resources into it…so you have to either completely abandon the Pacific and ignore Japan while it mushrooms into a beast, or build a factory in South Africa and land American troops in West Africa and march them northeast to fight the Japanese in Egypt. That’s kind of nuts. That’s the problem I’m trying to solve. I think Germany vs. Russia is actually quite well-balanced on this map as long as the Allies put a little pressure on Germany in the west.

    @Cernel I have never played the game without NOs, so you could be right, but I have trouble seeing how the math adds up. Typically on turn 1, the Allies will collect NOs for Russia’s xenophobia, the UK’s territorial integrity, the USA’s mainland, and the USA’s Pacific islands. You might also get an NO for the Philippines, so 20 to 25 IPCs in Allied NOs. Meanwhile, the Axis will typically collect NOs for Germany’s Fortress Europe, for Germany’s Lebensraum, for Italy’s clear Med, for Japan’s Chinese coast, and perhaps for Japan’s money islands: again, 20 to 25 IPCs in Axis NOs. Eliminating the NOs on turn 1 shouldn’t make much a difference.

    Later in the game, say, by turn 4, in a Kill Germany first setup, the Allies will typically collect Russia’s xenophobia, the UK’s French bonus, the USA’s mainland, and the USA’s French bonus, for roughly 20 IPCs. The Axis will typically collect 2 German NOs, 0 Italian NOs, and all 3 Japanese NOs, for roughly 25 IPCs. Again, not a huge difference.

    If instead it’s a Kill Japan First setup, the Allies will typically collect the UK’s territorial integrity, the UK’s Japanese island bonus, the USA’s mainland bonus, the USA’s pacific island bonus, and perhaps the USA’s Philippine bonus, for 20 to 25 IPCs. The Axis should have all 3 German NOs, 1 Italian NO (assuming modest American landings in Morocco), and 1 or 2 Japanese NOs, for 25 to 30 IPCs. Still not a huge difference.

    So if you eliminate the NOs, maybe the Axis lose about 5 IPCs per turn vs. the Allies in the middlegame, but it’s not clear to me that that’s enough of a change (or the right kind of change) to balance Japan’s early explosion.

    Also, mandatory effective bomber spam is a pretty big drawback, in my opinion! Have you ever tried using the Balanced Mod interceptor rules (fighters intercept bombers @ 2) to see if that helps contain the spam?

  • All I’m gonna say is pretty much all of the games mostly have Japan becoming a monster if ignored by the US. It doesn’t help when Japan just builds mostly tanks and runs every body over. To me that is just wrong. Not to hack this thread or go off topic to far.
    You need to restrict Japan on tanks and movement in Asia and Siberia and get most of the Islands involved in the Pacific so Japan has to focus more on protecting them more and making the US go 60 -40 most of the game. I’m in the process of testing this in my game now. Other wise not interested in what i’m saying, OK then just disreguard this comment. Good Luck. By the way I do like your idea about M Tank C5 A2 D2 and H Tank C6 A3 D3.

  • @SS-GEN That’s very relevant commentary, and I’m interested, so, thank you, SS Gen.

    I agree that many A&A games have an issue where Japan becomes a monster if ignored by the US – some might see that as a problem, and some might see that as a feature – maybe the USA should have to pay at least some attention to Japan to keep them contained.

    What bugs me about Anniversary 1941 is that, at least in my experience, even if the USA focuses 100% on containing Japan, sometimes Japan still grows big enough to be a huge problem for the Allies. For the most part I like Anniversary better than Global, but one thing I think Global gets right is that the USA, at war, is cranking out 80+ IPCs a turn even before they have any major conquests, whereas Japan, even after grabbing the valuable territories in their immediate neighborhood, is still only making 50 IPCs per turn – so if the USA focuses entirely on Japan early in the game, then the USA will still have the stronger economy and will be able to reliably beat Japan down – the only question is whether that beatdown will happen fast enough for Moscow and/or Cairo to hold against Germany and Italy. By contrast, in Anniversary, Japan can singlehandedly outearn the entire American economy, even when America is spending 100% on the Pacific…and because (with no bid) there aren’t any suitable territories for an Allied factory in the Pacific, America is the only Ally that will be spending any money in the Pacific, so Japan can still dominate even when all the Allies go 100% KJF. That’s crazy. I didn’t believe it at first, but @axis_roll pounded me into the dirt repeatedly in the process of showing me how and why it’s true, and now I’m a convert. So that’s the problem I’m trying to solve; I’d like to see an Allied Pacific force that’s capable of meaningful resistance to the Japanese expansion.

    I completely agree with your criticism about Japanese tanks in, say, Axis & Allies 1942 Second Edition, or Axis & Allies Revised, or, even, to a lesser extent, in Axis & Allies Global 1940. Japanese tanks blitzing through the Gobi Desert, the Himalayas, or the frozen swamps of Siberia should not really be a major theme of this game. Japan did not have and could not have built a logistical infrastructure capable of delivering spare parts, fuel, and ammo for tanks over 2,000+ miles of hostile, snowy, mountainous terrain.

    That said, I’ve never noticed Japanese tanks in Anniversary to be a major problem; my Japanese opponents typically use transports to conquer coastal Allied territories, as well they should. If you or anyone else is having trouble with Japanese tanks in Anniversary, I suppose it’s perfectly reasonable to nerf the Japanese tanks down to A2 D2 M2 C5 – they were, after all, mostly light tanks and somewhat outdated relative to other superpowers’ models. You could also just have a house rule that there’s no blitzing (for anyone) in western China or central Siberia.

  • Well I do have a house rule where all motorized units in game can only move 1 in Asia and Siberia. Japan never got deep into Asia or Siberia plus they only had 700 tanks in war.
    As for anniversary and tanks for Japan I don’t know about in that game. You would think 5 icp tanks would be a problem.
    Ya I agree what your saying if US goes 100% in pacific and Japan still is a small monster.
    May need a setup tweak.
    Maybe Axis Roll has a better answer.

    As far as my game with my tweaks to Japan and other stuff is going great and Japan can get the money inland but it takes them at least a bit longer in time and need the money islands and also has to protect there island NO and from keeping US from getting them too.
    Japan now has a ton of decisions to make and no more maps. Anyway sorry I got carried away.

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