More Defensive Artillery



  • I have play tested a revised artillery unit with improved defence capabillity. When an infantry defends along with an artillery, the infantry’s defens increases to 3. Artillery do still support infantry on attack. Remember that the artillery unit we have today were made when the armour unit still defended on a 2, in A&A Europe.

    Artillery was mostly a defensive unit during WWII and proved to be the basic weapon of fighting tanks. However, in A&A, it is usually only used as an offensive unit, mainly to give large infantry formations more punch, not for anti-tank defences or counter-battery fire upon enemy artillery. The task of destroying enemy tanks and artillery batteries can also fall to attack aircraft, but unless they are already on patrol overhead, they are usually not quick enough to save friendly forces from damage. More often, ground-based counter-battery fire would suppress the enemy artillery batteries and force them to move, while aircraft would follow up later with a strike to destroy the rest of the enemy artillery.

    Once Germany had been thrown on to the defensive in WWII the burden of combat shifted away from aircraft and tanks to the infantry and artillery. This were not because the former were not needed but rather their short supply forced reliance on the latter. However Germany had a shortage of artillery and therefore carried severe penalties. The inabillity to conduct effective large-scale counter-battery operations,as well as the loss of air superiority, was primary cause of German failure in both the West and the East. The early hopes of victory through mobility were replaced by an insatiable demand for the firepower of artillery.



  • The cause for infantry to get the increased defens value is because it is easier to keep count that way, since one normally have more infantry units than artillery units. More over it is easier to remember a rule that is consistent with the unit’s other special abillities.  😉



  • this rule would mean attacking a territory with an infantry and an artillery is a serious task. You cant bring just one land unit, two 3’s means an almost garunteed hit, perhaps even two.

    A territory with 3 men and three artillery would be as powerful on defense as a teritory with 6 tanks.  for 9 IPC’s less you have an excelent defense that wont draw much attention because there are no high value units there.

    This rule could skew the game too much in favor of the defender, however it sounds like a good national advantage for germany or some such, “German 88’s” perhaps.



  • I like giving art more of a roll, gives you more of a reason to buy them. We at times have given art a def @ 3 (1st wave only) at a capitol and against an amp assault. It kinda replaces the old Atlantic Wall or represents the Gustav & Maginot lines. I figure the beaches would have a dug in position, also works as dug in defenders for islands. Giving the bonus to inf works w/pairing because as you lose your inf you lose the bonus. Sometimes you have huge stacks of inf though so I might stick to 1st wave only. The best part is that if you want an Atlantic Wall you have a build it just like the Germans did. As a counter balance we sometimes use marines.



  • @oztea:

    This rule could skew the game too much in favor of the defender, however it sounds like a good national advantage for germany or some such, “German 88’s” perhaps.

    Oz you posted as I was typing. In our games we limited this bonus to amp assaults and countered it w/ marines. We also gave it to capitols and sometimes all IC, as these tt/cities would have a large scale defense. We also normally only give the bonus 1st wave of battle to keep it from getting to strong. You could also make it part of the adv art tech if you want, but we like getting it from the beginning to set up def.

    Mr Anderson, I like pairing it with inf idea. I guess it really doesn’t matter which get the bonus. As long as they’re paired, one fires at 2 the other at 3.


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    I like the idea, but if I may?

    1)  Artillery should not advance with attacking infantry, they fire from the zone they were in.
    2)  They only support infantry, on attack, if the infantry started in the zone the artillery unit is in.
    3)  If artillery fire in the combat phase, they may not move in the non-combat phase. (This way you cannot advance the artillery into newly conquered territories unless you did not use the artillery in the attack.  Should give Russia and Germany a break!)
    4)  Artillery, on attack, only fire in the first round of combat, and their bonus to attacking infantry only applies for the first round of combat.



  • @oztea:

    A territory with 3 men and three artillery would be as powerful on defense as a teritory with 6 tanks.  for 9 IPC’s less you have an excelent defense that wont draw much attention because there are no high value units there.

    Oz, Mr A isn’t giving both inf & art def at a 3, only one of them. So 3 inf & 3 art would have a  defense of three 3’s & three 2’s not six 3’s. But it is still pretty good D. (maybe the Detroit lions should try it).lol



  • @oztea:

    …A territory with 3 men and three artillery would be as powerful on defense as a teritory with 6 tanks.  for 9 IPC’s less you have an excelent defense that wont draw much attention because there are no high value units there.

    This rule could skew the game too much in favor of the defender…

    You are missing the point here, that is matching one-to-one. If one no longer can match an infantry to an artillery, due to cassualties, the increased fighting capability is lost. More over, it is ONLY infantry that get this increased defens capability of +1, just like support fire from an artillery in an attack. By the way, since the map only get bigger with more territories for every new updated A&A version, the mobility of a unit will be even more important.


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

    Taking Jenn’s idea further:

    Artillery fires from adjacent territory at 3 either attack or defense and its preemptive and also if it rolls a one it chooses which land unit it will destroy.

    Its no longer a “fire every round unit”

    But it does not get stuck into a counterattack, because its not involved in combat movement

    It also supports the infantry at +1

    It now moves two spaces and still costs 4

    It can move even if it attacked but during NCM two spaces.

    Now this is something outside the box and might even be a home run house rule.



  • Our group at times have beefed up adv art tech to include the option of firing at adjacent tt @ 3 one time only, but you need to match it 1 for 1 w/inf (kinda like bombardment). So this tech would allow art to support two inf +1 if it goes in with them (oob you would have three 2’s) or support one inf +1 and fire its 3 from adjacent tt (only once). As IL said its pretty cool not to have them be on the front line. I’m ok with it being able to move in non combat even if it fired in combat, but moving two spaces might be to much. I think it should still only move 1 space either before it fires or after not both.

    I also like a roll of 1 gets to choose ground unit, they should be able to hit a tank. Tanks should also get this. As discussed on another tread ftrs in ground battles should also be able to choose air units if you roll a 1 and the enemy has air. If there’s no air ftrs can choose any ground unit.



  • I like Jens idea, well except for 4, but her limts give a enough drawbacks to attack, to warrant a serious upgrade to defense.

    All arty defend on 3 first round
    OR
    All arty may choose the enemy casualty on a roll of a 1
    OR
    All arty bump the defense of infantry to 3 on defense at 1:1


  • 2018 2017 '16 '11 Moderator

    Yea, my idea was to kinda treat them like shore bombardments, except they also give a boost to infantry on the attack as well (for the first round.)

    After all, I cannot for the life of me remember a single news real showing an M-79 Pack Howitzer CHARGING the enemy with the infantry!  I believe that’s why we had tanks! (Basically artillery that “charge” with the infantry, right?)



  • Arty firing from adjacent territories?  
    Did Gerald Bull make this house rule?  😄

    IMO 25 km is probably maximum fire support for heavies. If they ain’t following me then they ain’t helping me for long.



  • OK so this joint defensive bonus with inf + arty: would it still apply if the arty and inf were allies conducting multinational def?



  • @allboxcars:

    OK so this joint defensive bonus with inf + arty: would it still apply if the arty and inf were allies conducting multinational def?

    No joint strikes in defens or attack, simple as that. Since I first saw this house rule I have play tested the rule about 20 times, were arty boost the defense of infantry to 3 on defense at 1:1. I must say it is not a game breaker, but really nice. I will use this house rule in every game a play from now on. Now those arty are worth to buy. I love it, good work Game Master! I do really think that this will become a standard rule like the 2-hit battleships. If the artillery would have a 3 in defens instead it would be close to a game breaker or superior (or almost) infantry.



  • I dunno… 3 for inf on the defense?  😐
    My initial impression: sounds kind of too lethal, too easy.

    I guess I’d rather see a Fortress piece or something to signify elaborate strategic defenses reflecting what arty + inf can do… but make it rare or special investment rather than make every arty + inf combo automatically get it.

    Still, worth playtesting and definitely food for thought.



  • @allboxcars:

    I dunno… 3 for inf on the defense?  😐
    My initial impression: sounds kind of too lethal, too easy.

    I guess I’d rather see a Fortress piece or something to signify elaborate strategic defenses reflecting what arty + inf can do… but make it rare or special investment rather than make every arty + inf combo automatically get it.

    Still, worth playtesting and definitely food for thought.

    You don’t get it. It is not a 3 in defens for inf, but a 1:1 match for inf and arty. One could say that arty defends on a 3 as long as it is protected by a inf. This increased defence capabillity is lost once there are no inf (cannon fodder) to match with it in the combat. It is not over powered, I have play tested it for like 20 times. I also tried the 3 in defens for arty, but it turned out that one bought as many arty as inf, were as one buy less arty on the 1:1 match.



  • @Dreadnaught:

    You don’t get it. It is not a 3 in defens for inf, but a 1:1 match for inf and arty.

    OK, so which one of us doesn’t “get” the proposed house rule?

    @Game:

    When an infantry defends along with an artillery, the infantry’s defens increases to 3.

    Trust me, I got it thanks. 😉
    I just don’t agree with that increase in lethality for every arty + inf combo. Big difference between Stage 6 dug-in and Maginot Line… and that’s where I draw it. IMO, naturally.

    Now, as expressed in another thread, I can get behind the idea that arty defends at 1 and Armour at 2 AND those types of units receive a +1 on defense when paired with inf on a 1:1.



  • @allboxcars:

    I dunno… 3 for inf on the defense?  😐
    My initial impression: sounds kind of too lethal, too easy.

    I guess I’d rather see a Fortress piece or something to signify elaborate strategic defenses reflecting what arty + inf can do… but make it rare or special investment rather than make every arty + inf combo automatically get it.

    Still, worth playtesting and definitely food for thought.

    Well, ask your self if not a tank is superior to an artillery. I never buy artillery if I can afford to buy a tank instead, due to its mobility and defensive capabillity. By making the artillery unit a little bit more defensive, but still not better than a infantry, I would buy them more often. Such a defensive artillery unit would favor a more offensive play by all players, because a infantry/artillery combo would be a better buy than just two infantry units. Such a combo would cost 1 IPC more than two infantry, but increases the combat capability with 1 more hitpower in defens and 2 more hitpower in offense. The fact that the attack and defens bonus only last as long as there are any infantry to be matched with the artillery wont make it to a game breaker. One will most likely buy 2 infantry per artillery unit. The artillery conquers, the infantry occupies.

    My suggestion for a revised artillery unit is certaintly balanced and not a game breaker; when an infantry defends along with an artillery, the infantry’s defens increases to 3. It is easy and simple, and is also more historical correct. Try it, and you will find out your self, but please let me know what think about it after a few rounds of playtesting. Remember that the artillery unit we have today were made when the armour unit still defended on a 2, in A&A Europe.


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

    AAE40 has tanks at 3-3-2-6  8/6= 4/3

    so…. the artillery costing 4 and moving 1…  should be a 5/4 or 6/4 to maintain the same ratio of value to cost.

    so you got either 5 or 6 points to play with and you have to account for the +1 for infantry which is not possible to account for.

    so how bout artillery is a three on attack as long as it has infantry supporting it?

    the game has too many defending values on land to overcome and this makes the artillery the ‘battlefield shaper’

    Artillery is always fired first to start the battle and soften up the defenders. The defender uses it as well, but setting up massive artillery is not the point of defense.



  • @Imperious:

    AAE40 has tanks at 3-3-2-6  8/6= 4/3

    so…. the artillery costing 4 and moving 1…  should be a 5/4 or 6/4 to maintain the same ratio of value to cost.

    so you got either 5 or 6 points to play with and you have to account for the +1 for infantry which is not possible to account for.

    so how bout artillery is a three on attack as long as it has infantry supporting it?

    the game has too many defending values on land to overcome and this makes the artillery the ‘battlefield shaper’

    Artillery is always fired first to start the battle and soften up the defenders. The defender uses it as well, but setting up massive artillery is not the point of defense.

    Well that new 6 IPC tank wont be in AA42, right! By the way your counting does not include the fact 6 IPCs of infantry can take two hits. A artillery and infantry combo cost 7 IPCs and have 4/4 and can take two hits vs a tank for 6 IPCs 3/3 move two. No boy, this will be another infantry push machanic, don’t you think. Otherwise one need combined arms for tanks and fighters, like my national advantage for Blitzkrieg. As I said before try it, then talk. I will try the tank at 6 IPCs, but some how it will need some changes in the start up for the units on the board.



  • Well.
    Defesive artillery isn’t necessary.



  • The new offensive abilities like tac bmr & mech inf in AA40 will tilt the advantage to the attacker.  Some type of def bonus to counter it will be needed. Making art more versatile is a good way to do it without adding new pieces. The pairing inf/art to achieve this goal has precedence and will be easy to implement. There are a few ways floating around to achieve it.

    1. This tread pairing inf/art giving inf +1 in def as well as offense is a good rule IMO.
    2. As read in another tread pairing inf/art allowing art to fire its 2 preempt (casualties don’t fire back) is also a good idea.
    3. I also like art being able to fire over boarders (maybe w/rocket tech) 1 for 1 w/inf going in.

    All in all there is a lot of talk about art, meaning many think there is room for improvement here. Much of it focuses on def against amp assault.  I just hope through testing and reading all these post (lot on Larry’s sight also) they do something here.



  • its become semi perminant in all my games that Arty defend pre-emptively on the first round of amphibious invasions. Gives them more defensive roles, counters the power of shore bombardment, and solves the “blockhouse” question nicely.

    For instance, in my games, Gibraltar starts with an artilery to simulate the fortress there, better than an infantry.



  • oztea,
    Yea I like that as well. With just some minor adjustments at set-up it seems to be very fitting. I was thinking in AA50 that def of shore lines is adequate, but was wondering if it should apply to all art in AA40. In AA40 your going to have much more fire power coming at you with the new units introduced. Being able to set up def on tt that don’t touch the sea may be necessary.


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