I was asked to share a variant of AnA that I learned long before Global 40 or any of the other out of box games for AnA.
I had a professor back in college (Gary Ingersoll) that would play his own version of Axis and Allies with his students. He built his own map/board out of Blue Stone Marble tiles (I believe 5’x3’) and hand painted a map similar to the AnA 1940 Global Map. He encased the tiles with two interlocking wooden casings. The game was played more like Risk, but with AnA pieces and rules. I believe that he taught his students this version because teaching his version was much easier as we had a revolving door of players. Since then, I have made my own board that is custom painted on canvas (6’X3’), and have taught this version to my friends that are willing to frequently play. In fact, we as a collective are just now getting involved with G40. We played yesterday, and the games are always different with this style.
Here’s some of the differences:
1. Each territory on the board has a IPC value (no exceptions). The values are based off World War 2 relevance.
2. Each territory has its own card with the IPC value on it just like in Risk. The cards are shuffled and placed in stacks of 10-15. Usually there is enough stacks per player, with 1 or 2 left over. There will likely be leftover cards and that is OK. Unlike in Risk, every territory will not start with units on it. Dice is rolled to see which players get to pick from the stacks first, second, third, etc… Example: If there is 5 players, there will be 6 or 7 stacks to choose from.
3. Players choose which territories they want from their stack. If the stacks have 10 territory cards in them, players can pick the 3 or 4 best cards they want. This is where strategy comes into play because you might settle for cards of lesser value, but are clustered similar together. Like in Risk, a player could have cards scattered all over the board, but a smart player will be very selective with his cards. the remaining cards will be discarded into the general stack. So when it is all said and done, each player can start off with either 3 or 4 territories. The reason for only choosing to start with 3 might be for having the ability to start off with more units stacked on one territory for defensive or offensive purposes (more on that in a minute).
4. Each player starts off with one of every type of unit (exception for 2 infantry pieces), 2 factories, a capitol complex, a coastal gun (optional), and an air and naval base (optional rules). A player will place these pieces (6 land units)(3 planes)(6 ships)(2 Factories)(Capitol) on the 3 or 4 territories that they drew and selected from their stacks. Remember that all pieces should be positioned in the most strategic way for your nation to succeed. After the placement is complete, an optional rule is to provide each player an additional 15 or 20 IPC to build whatever types of units they want for their territories. One rule to note is that your capitol complex acts like a victory city and should be protected at all times. Having a capitol gains you an extra 10 IPCs. Also, of your two factories, one must be located in the territory with the capitol complex.
5. Your factories work differently that they do in traditional AnA. A factory produces the IPC value of the territory it is located on. Exanple: A territory worth 5 IPC has the ability to produce 5 units a turn on that factory. The Capitol Complex/factory has an ability to produce unlimited numbers of units. It doesn’t matter the value of the territory. Example: A territory only worth 2 IPC can produce unlimited numbers of units if it has a capitol complex/factory located on it, while a territory worth 2 IPC with only a factory on it can only produce 2 units.
6. Once all the starting pieces are on the board, players roll dice again to determine the starting order. Once an order is established, each player is given a starting income based on their starting position. Its really up to you how much each player starts with, but we play by having the last place positioned player starting with 20 IPC, and then removing 1 IPC per player going up towards the first place player. Example: Player 1/16 IPC Player 2/17 IPC, Player 3/18 IPC, Player 4/19 IPC, and Player 5/20 IPC. The rules from this point on basically follow AnA rules minus the political situations. Players are free to ally or attack whom they desire.
7. Ship movement is determined by rolling dice. Instead of having a set number like 2 moves per ship, players must roll the dice to see how far they can move. One dice can be rolled for an entire fleet, or if boats ares going in different directions per ship. Transports move at half speed because they are heavy and slow. Example: A player rolls a 6 on his dice and wants to move his fleet with loaded transports. The armed ships can move at full speed 6 spaces, however the transports can only move 3. All dice rolls are rounded up for ship movement. Example: A roll of 3 would mean a transport could move up to 2 spaces.
8. All empty territories are up for grabs with no threat of war. Obviously the more you have, the better because it funds your war effort. A territory must have at least one of your units in it to count as yours. Once you leave the territory, you no longer can receive its IPC value.
9. If you lose your territory containing your capitol you can still play, however you must give the victor over you in that battle half of your IPCs on hand at that time. You can purchase a new capitol on your turn, however it must be located where you have a factory. You can choose to forfeit your nation at anytime, but technically as long as you have units (land, air, or sea) to move on the board you are in the game. Players that have no ground units are referred to as pirates. They lack the ability to obtain new land to gain IPCs, build factories, build new units, etc…
10. Usually a winner is called by whoever is doing the best in the game.
This game can take just as long or longer to play that Axis and Allies 1940 Global. It is fantastic for anyone to play, however it is hard to play on a tradition AnA map. I play on a custom map that features different territories that AnA offers. You could play on the G40 map, but it is much more difficult to create balance in the game. Plus, North and South America become way less relevant on an AnA map.
Usually we play with 4-6 people. The game played yesterday only had 3 player, but we each played as 2 nations. So 6 total nations were represented. I have the G40 miniatures, plus some custom ones from Historical Board Gaming.
I have implemented my own research and development charts, which consists of 48 different techs that can be achieved. 4 charts (Air, Naval, Ground, Industrial) each have 2 sets of 6 technologies. Once you have gained all 6 of the top bracket, you are eligible to secure the bottom bracket of 6 (One per each side of a dice). You obtain techs by not using one of your factories to build new units. For each factory you didn’t use, you are allowed one dice to roll at a 1 in order to secure a tech. Then a player chooses between the 4 charts, and rolls again to see which of those 6 he achieves for his research. Examples: Nukes, Railroads, Shipyard Efficiency, Infantry Training, Jet Fighters, Industrial Resources, Trench Warfare, etc… You roll for this at the end of your turn, not the beginning.
Well that’s all I can think of for now, but I hope you all liked this version and get around to trying it. I can answer any questions you might have.