@mordedura said in Is 1941 Playable Out of the Box?:
Apologies for the noob question.
Noob question away - I’ll answer as best I can. And the best part is, if I’m right, you will know it. That’s because if I’m wrong, people will swoop in to tell you and me that I’m wrong.
I was going to buy 1941 for my 9-year old son, but I’ve read numerous reviews and forum posts that suggest it doesn’t have enough pieces to be playable out of the box.
Can A&A 1941 be played out of the box? Yes. Can it be played well, or smoothly, out of the box? No. I’ll explain below.
I understand there is no pseudo cash, so one has to keep tally sheets, and I’ve read some excellent posts about the need for more cash flow to make the game more fun, but for now I just need to know whether or not I can buy it and enjoy playing it as is? Or is it just going to drive us nuts and lead to me buying accessories right away?
The problem with playing A&A 1941 straight out of the box is that:
- You can make up for the lack of paper money by keeping track of the game money on paper (some players prefer to do it that way - simple to do and easy to see if a mistake was made);
- You can make up for small number of dice (4 of 1 color) by adding more dice, especially with dice of different colors; and
- The colored paperboard chits in grey, green, and red help make up for the small number of pieces in the game box.
But for all that, the small number of pieces will still cause you to have to write out slips of paper with “US Tank” or “Japanese Destroyer” so that you can have tanks in more than 5 places or destroyers in more than 2 places.
And that last point is the stickiest one. And it’s the one that drives many people away from A&A 1941.
I’ve written more complete thoughts on this game before, so I’ll give you a review sandwich - opening thought, link to the full story, and closing thoughts. If you have questions after I’m done, please ask away.
Axis & Allies 1941 is meant to be an entry level game for the A&A series. It is both an inexpensive game and a cheap game…
BGG link to my full run-down of A&A1941
While there is a vocal contingent that is not very happy with A&A 1941, I find much to love about 1941. I will caveat that with the fact that I have added in many of the things missing - plastic stacking chips, play money, and factories. But the rules and the map make for a lean and mean game of Axis & Allies. Just don’t let the cheapness of the suit and tie distract you from the value to be had in this game.
Also, to add some breadth, here is one redditer’s take on making A&A 1941 all it can be. Of course, it’s an old observation: Just buy two copies… /s
Thanks for your thoughts, much appreciated!
I hope I was of help to you.