How is the balance in Global War 1936 Version 3



  • Hi i play A&A over 10 years. Espically the G 40 version. Our playgroup plays only Global 40. I bought the second edition of Gobal war 1939 for our playgroup. Well the map is really good, but the game balance is sorry that i have to say this reallly reallly bad. You cant win as allies if the axis does evereything right… Well i know in A&A Global 40 the axis has an advantage but i think the game has pretty good balance (we play only low luck btw and the allies can be beaten). Also there is a bidding system for it. I think it is much better than in Global war 1939. So this leads to my question:

    How is the game Balance in Global War 1936?

    I would invest much money to get the base game with all unit types and so on and a printed manual in colours. But only if the game balance is good… Pls tell me your impressions.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    First, I still love A&A Global 1940. It’s the best A&A game in my opinion. As much as we play Global War mostly now, it’ll always have a place for me. Plus, the rules are much easier to follow for a more casual gamer who might join us!

    I’ll start by saying I’ve never played the Global 1939 game. When I discovered HBG, the 1936 game was in the works, so I waited for the new map, as it appealed to me far more than the 1939 map.

    With that said, I believe I’ve heard/read that one of the reasons Global 1936 came to be was to help “fix” shortcomings of the 1939 game. So I can’t speak to the balancing act of 1939, but I will say 1936 seems to have a good balance for me.

    One of the main differences is that the 1936 game has three alliances now: The Allies, The Axis, The Comintern. So there’s some different flavor in terms of the USSR and it’s allies being a separate faction entirely from the Allies.

    One thing I’ll say though to caution against saying a game is “broken”, is that sometimes that largely depends on who your opponents are. I’ve seen a lot of people over the years talk about how A&A 1940 is “broken” and that the Axis can’t possibly win, when in reality, a lot of experienced players will tell you the game is largely slanted to an Axis advantage. It can just depend on who your opponents are sometimes. If you have an inexperienced opponent, it’s going to seem really easy to beat them, no matter who you are!

    But again, I can’t really speak to 1939 being “broken”, you may very well be correct there. But I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with 1936 and it’s playability. The large variation of victory conditions/points, and the variability of a 1936 start really help make this a game where it’s hard to have the same outcome twice. Not to mention the myriad expansions that you can pick and chose from to add an extra flavor to your games you might like!

    Hope you decide to dive in!



  • Hey man,

    thanks for your great reply. I ordered the map of Global 1936 today (the biggest version). I liked the you tube videos about the game and your reply.

    A&A Global 1940 will also always stay in my heart. But its time for a real competitor in our gaming group. Thx again for your reply.

    Now i have to build up the game (order more pieces of units and so on) 😉 I cant wait to see the map. I hope it gets soon delivered too my home country (im from Germany). I hope covid doesnt hurt the deliverey times too much.

    Im really happy now to get a new game 😉 Again thx for your help.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    No worries my friend! Glad you went ahead and ordered it! It really is a next level of gaming! I think your play group looking for a more competitive game will be very happy with it! Definitely read the rules a number of times, there’s a lot in there!

    No idea on delivery times, but I know HBG is still turning orders around, so I’m sure on their end they’ll process quickly for you.

    Enjoy your game! Come here for any questions!



  • Thx my friend! Im really looking forward to play it. I ordered 2 Versions of A&A 1941 ony to get more pieces for Global 36 😉 Im so excited im looking for pieces everywhere in the internet. By the way to search for new plastic piecces is also very fun. I wish you a good start in the weekend.



  • Kudos on going for the largest 5x10 map. I have it and it is H-U-G-E. You still get some very crowded territories and knock off pieces accidentally, so I don’t know how players manage with the smaller versions. The quest for pieces is fun but expensive. Not all country-specific pieces are available, so painting pieces seems inevitable. It helps if you already own other versions of Axis & Allies too. Enjoy!


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    @Noneshallpass I have yet to purchase V3. I have the large V2 map (so what is considered the middle size for V3), and it’s definitely large. I’ve wondered how realistically we’ll be able to set up the larger map where we play. My gut says it’s a no brainer, but I’m continuing to hold off for now!

    And agreed, not all pieces are available in sculpts, @AlphaAeffchen . For example, there’s no Militia unit specifically that would be in a CCP red. You may want to invest in the tokens HBG sells. They have Militia, Cavalry, Airborne, Marine, etc., tons of tokens to represent units. I personally have liked to go with the sculpts, but it’s a bit more expensive, and not everything will be available as is to 100% get everything you might need!



  • Hey,

    @Noneshallpass: Thx for your reply i love the big map (I have the biggest of Global 1939) and yes the quest is expensive but its so much fun if you have some money to spend.

    @Noneshallpass i just ordered tokens for cavalary and militia (i have airborne tokens from 39 versions and i have tons of models from other A&A games). I will take the 1914 tanks for light tanks. The good thing is its easier to distinguish them from other tanks. I have many ideas.

    I wish you all a great weekend.



  • I bought a cheap Risk game with intent to put a quick coat or two of paint on those pieces. Got about 150 militia and 100 cavalry for around $20. Not sure if I’ll use the Risk cannons yet but??? It’s a hell of a lot cheaper than HBG chips or sculpts.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    It’s funny you say that. HBG’s early images of their game when incorporating cavalry used Risk cavalry as well. They probably wouldn’t like me saying this, but it looks to me the cavalry they made for their game is a direct ripoff of the Risk cavalry haha. That’s the first thing I thought when I saw them. The only difference being the HBG one as a helmet instead of a hat, and there’s less “fluff” to the reigns, but otherwise the sculpt looks almost identical haha.

    I’m too annoying to myself about wanting the game to look “right”. I bought the militia and everything else too. But I think your risk infantry would make solid militia units. Maybe the artillery could be shore guns? Or neutral artillery?

    Another thought, if you don’t want to buy a lot of expensive tokens and sculpts. HBG and others sell a ton of chips, the same ones as the gray and red ones you use in game, but in a ton of other colors. A lot of people use different color chips to denote unit type. Maybe purple equals Mountain Infantry, blue equals Marine, yellow equals Militia, etc. I never considered it myself because I figured that would be harder to remember then just remembering what sculpt is what haha.

    But I’ve made the game more expensive than strictly necessary for sure haha. But man, it sure looks nice to have a unique sculpt for every unit on the board! I’ve just added (and continue to add) orders here and there. Between the three of us, we’re cool to throw down $100 about every 6 months to add to what we need.



  • @Chris_Henry Using colored chips for now for a number of things. But my long term plan is like yours…a bit at a time.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    @bradywh Yeah, it makes it easier to add over time. And if you have others in your play group who would chip in, it makes the cost easier too!



  • I bought the game Amerika today from HBG. The units are good material.


  • 2018

    Not sure if anyone is still reading this thread, but I have the same question about balance. Spent the money to acquire a lot of pieces and such, played the game 2x now and have mixed feelings about the balance. My son and I play and we love the map, the added units and pieces, among other things. But the Axis have just steam rolled the others. India and Moscow both only built for defense and turtled and the battles for these lasted two rounds… I do think that when starting in 1936, which we did for one of the games, the Allies faired much better because we could choose what we built leading up to 1939. But that does add a lot of time (hours) just to get to a balanced start in 1939. I’m hoping over time we can figure it out, and maybe we are missing something too, in order to balance it better. We could probably watch GHG’s videos and that would help us, but there are a lot of hours to watch - LOL. Does GHG have one summary video about the differences to A&A as well as addressing balance?


  • 2018 2017 '16

    @GuamSolo Funny I was just having a lengthy conversation with the rules guy today about this. He has played many games and has concluded that it is a guaranteed win for the Axis if the Russians turtle in the game. He says there’s not much point in playing past 42 as it only gets worse for the Allies and Comintern for the rest of the game.

    He stressed that you had to stop playing the game with an Axis & Allies mentality if you wanted to play this game properly. The Russians for instance need to be very aggressive if they have a chance of winning. He watched my last game on YouTube and was wondering why I was waiting until I was at full income to declare war. He says you have to be more aggressive than that or the Axis will roll to an easy victory in the end.

    Regardless of what country you’re playing, don’t think that any A&A strategy will bring you success. Start from scratch and try different stuff. Remember that you are playing for points and you have to be aggressive to go after them. A&A you can turtle because it’s all about protecting the capitals and the victory cities for victory, whereas in Global War some of the nations can still play on without a capital. Let us know if that makes a difference for you.


  • 2018

    @GeneralHandGrenade Do you have one video to recommend that addresses this? We did come to the conclusion on our own that you couldn’t use A&A strategies fairly early on. But even with that, India for example can only build one unit a turn, and then two as I upgraded - but their incomes are really low by comparison to Japan. With Russia I couldn’t build enough units either. Their income is pretty low too and by the time their income jumps up enough they were way behind in total number of units. In order to have any attacking punch Russian could build tanks or dive bombers–but then they are building less units. We concluded that the allies needed to lend lease more. But I don’t know if that would have sufficiently helped. When Germany takes Moscow in 2 rounds you just needed more units over all.


  • 2018

    @GuamSolo By the way, Germany consolidated everything in the north. There was a smaller force in the south and as it approached I destroyed it in a counter attack. But the larger force in the north…how can you be aggressive when there’s really only one place to attack and it is too big .



  • We will play this game with low luck rules. We only played A&A with low luck. Many games get really destroyed by too dicey decissions. Low luck is fairer and keeps the game more intersesting. For example when you role for income. We will give a country 6 ipp (oh god i miss the old ipc word ;-)) for one dice role. So you dont have to role for income. For us its much more fun to calculate outcomes. A little bit of luck yes. But not too much. This for example made our A&A games much more fun.

    One of the most imbalances i can imagine are the different technologies you can get in the game. Some of them are well nice to have. But others are just broken. I can tell you from any A&A game that longrangeaircraft is broken. We are thinking about to play the 36 game without development or at least we will ban some of the tech choices (long range aircraft). If germany gets longrange well good luck with your game its straight up broken.

    I bought the 39 version map from hbg and many pieces for it. Well my game group and i returned to axis and allies global 40 because the balance of the 39 version of the game is broken. There was no way the allies can win the game if you play axis correct (many people also told me this and wrote articles about it). Now i bought the 36 version and hope it gets better.

    I really hope that the 36 version is balanced. I put quite a bit of money into this game. We will play in November (i take one week of from work for it). I cant point out enough that gamebalance is just more important than historical correctness. Aslo its so funny how many people say but we want a more historical game. If you look at A&A global it has enough historical correctness. No one knows what would have happened if there would be other decissions made in ww2. Perhaps sealion was possible. No one can really tell you if it would be successfull (im happy it never happened in reality)… But i rally dont see why so many people are complaining about historical corectness in A&A games…

    Please dont get me wrong. I really like the epic map of 36 and 39 form hbg. And more units. Better rules for some extend (the submarine rules are just too complex). But if the game is heavily unbalanced it destroys all the fun you can have with the game. Historical corectness to some degree is important but gamebalance is quite more important. I really really hope this game has a good balance.

    But hey i trust hbg and the people who wrote that its quite good balanced. Also most of the time you need many many games to see if a game has good balance or not.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    I guess I can’t speak to how you’ve all been playing, but GHG hit it right on the head (unsurprisingly). You can’t think of and play this game with an A&A mentality of Axis versus Allies. It truly is an Axis versus Allies versus Comintern game.

    The above post about the Soviets turtleing is a prime example. The Comintern can’t just sit back and turtle, with the expectation that the Allies will come to the rescue and open up a western front and save them. The Comintern concedes the game at that point, and the Allies have no real reason to assist them any more than it might help them attain one or more of their own VC’s.

    I haven’t run into the same issues of an Axis advantage, personally. Granted, that’s not to say we’re perfect players. There’s so much to this game that I guess we could be missing obvious things. But I’ve seen nothing that tells me it’s impossible for the non-Axis powers to win.

    I think it’s just a matter of learning and remembering everything you can do. I’m seeing posts about only being able to build a few units in India. Well, don’t forget the US can Lend Lease a unit to the FEC every turn. Utilize this if you need to.

    I also don’t really see the same issues when it comes to money. Yes, the Axis have an early advantage. But this very quickly changes when the US and USSR are at wartime income and can really get going with some units.



  • @Chris_Henry said in How is the balance in Global War 1936 Version 3:

    I’m seeing posts about only being able to build a few units in India. Well, don’t forget the US can Lend Lease a unit to the FEC every turn. Utilize this if you need to.

    I think this touches on a great point. While yes FEC only starts with one factory, you can really squeeze a lot of production out of them, on top of lend lease. For example in v3 you can as FEC build:

    • One unit from a factory
    • One militia per IIP value
    • One Colonial Infantry per land zone with an IPP
    • One Infantry upgraded from a militia.
    • Two Gurkhas (a very good unit for 4 IPP)

    As you can see, IPP permitting, you’ll have plenty of things to build.

    And when it comes to lend lease, sometimes you have to be a bit crafty with it. UK wants to send some units to FEC, well they cant lend lease them, but they can give money to France who can then lend lease to FEC. Or as USA, you want to rush some aid to FEC? Send them a plane and send the USSR a plane on the condition they send an equal to or lesser value plane to FEC.

    Regarding balance, from my limited experience it seems about fair, but there are always room for tweaking it either by the balance team or home rules to make it more fair. For example, if you feel some tech is OP, put a house rule that says add +1 to your rolls for each other nation who has completed that tech or something like that.


  • 2018

    @insaneHoshi These are good tips. We’ve only played two games so I imagined there are a lot of ways in which balance can be better attained, but these things are learned over time. If anyone else has helpful tips please post them.

    One question @insaneHoshi, or anyone really: do you find the allies helping the Russian often in your games? Laundering money through Moscow to aid FEC seems like a very allies thing to do, but not as much if you are competing with them as well? In our two games we played there were only two players which meant I was all of the allies. I wondered several times if I would actually be doing some of the things I was if there was a separate player for Russian.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    @insaneHoshi Good point on Militia as well! All those and my own points are just to show that there are certainly other things you can do to reinforce areas. Another example for India would be, if you’re feeling really pressured, the South Africa factory is a transport away from shipping more reinforcements to India if you need/want it.

    My point was that there are times where you need to “think outside the box” on what you can do to help yourself and/or to hurt the enemy. There’s certainly ways to do it!

    My other suggestion would be to maybe add different expansions to your game that might have more of an anti-Axis slant to them. I’ve always felt the Partisans Expansion, as an example, probably “hurts” the Axis more than the Allies or Comintern, since they’re the ones occupying a lot of territory for large parts of a game. That might help “rebalance” in your eyes and games too.

    @GuamSolo to answer your question from my perspective, I’ve seen some help to the Soviets, but I would say it depends on circumstance and theater. If I’m the Allies, or particularly the Americans, I’ll send units to the USSR earlier in a game and/or if the USSR really looks in trouble. It hurts the Allies more to have the Comintern defeated quickly/early. An Allied player should want the Axis and the Comintern to bog each other down as much as possible. This will take resources away from building up or focusing in the West, but would also in most circumstances be blocking a lot of VC’s from being attained by either side. I’d say the last quarter of a game I wouldn’t consider it. At that point I think a lot of things are drawn in the sand, and your couple extra units won’t make or break a Soviet victory/survival. But that’s also circumstantial as well I’m sure!



  • @GuamSolo In my limited experience, I don’t really have any qualms about aiding the USSR, despite their inevitable betrayal. I think when it comes down to the final round and if the axis has been neutralized, the allies have a much easier capability to take VPs from the USSR than vice versa. In a recent game with GHG and Panzer King (documented on both their channels; check them out!) I was able to take approximately 4 - 5 VPs from the USSR by taking Vladivostok and Murmansk amphibiously. Plus I had an even chance at an airborne assault on the Donbas which would have taken an additional point if it did not fail.

    One relevant example from this game to this current discussion was the USSR player was able to get Argentina aligned and Germany got a plane in aligned Peru. I made a deal with the USSR to attack this with his South American plane with the agreement that if his plane lived, i would LL a tank, but if it died I would LL a plane. Since his plane was stuck in South America contributing nothing to the eastern front, he agreed, rolled poorly and died and got a plane in Murmansk for his trouble.



  • Personally, I don’t understand how a serious judgement could be made on the balance of such a complex game after playing just a couple of runs. I have started only about ten games since I got Global 1936 v3 (most aborted before 1945), but there are so many options and possible strategies that the outcome is never predictable, especially starting in 1936.

    This feels much different from A&A where, as you keep playing, you just improve on what you consider to be the optimal strategy for the Axis or the Allies and then it comes down to the luck of the dice in a few key battles. Either Germany takes Moscow or the American overwhelming spending power prevails in good time…

    Another factor to consider is that there are so many rules and exceptions in Global 1936, that the first games will inevitably be riddled with errors on the part of the players. Each time we play, we realize that we forgot about some rule or other (i.e. minor ports don’t give a movement bonus, you can’t upgrade your factory in India, KMT militia cannot move in home country unless it becomes a major power, you need to damage the airfield before a city is considered to be encircled, and many, many more).

    Everyone is free to tweak the game with home rules, but I think you need to master all the basic rules first. To me it’s like saying, having played a few games of Chess, “Humm, the Queen seems really OP, so let’s replace a pawn with a third Knight”!

    Yes, the chance aspect of tech rolls is a part of the unpredictable outcome. For instance, playing Germany with early access to Panzergrenadiers and Wartime income makes for a much different game that when you miss out on these important rolls. The many expansions and optional rules available can also affect how your game plays out.

    Finally, due to the pandemic, I have only played the game with 2 players so far, so the Allies and Comintern are always coordinated, but I know this game was designed to be a 3 player game and I can’t wait to try with this very different dynamic.


  • 2018

    @Noneshallpass Good thoughts. And my posts are not serious judgments. Having only played two games, and they were imbalanced, I posted to see what other players experiences have been so as to learn what we are doing wrong or can do better. Interestingly, the rules you state that get overlooked we didn’t apply in our games!


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