So I used to play Axis and Allies when we were on deployment, with a version that was probably older than I was. I recently found a plain Axis and Allies game at a local game shop, although it’s different than the one I used to play with(I certainly don’t remember “artillery”).
Anyway, so here’s the problem:
Battleships are busted. I mean really, really busted. The western US fleet is absolutely unstoppable, and will wipe the floor with Japan every game, no matter what we’ve tried as counter-measures. Meanwhile, UK drops an industrial complex on India and between Russia and Britain, they squeeze Japan off the mainland while the US is mopping up the little islands in the South Pacific. The way it usually goes down is that Japan will wipe out the AC and sub at Hawaii, and the US will spend it’s first turn buying a carrier and a battleship, dumping the transports and destroyers on the East Coast into Algeria, then flying the fighter up from Hawaii to West Coast and placing the AC and Battleship on West Coast, with the 2 fighters on the AC. At this point, the Japanese fleet is outgunned, they can’t press the attack to the West Coast because of the disparity between carrier and fighter attacks and defends. They can’t really hold Hawaii either, though, because the US has a much higher resource score, and is raking in over 1/3 again what Japan is. Every turn, the US has another Battleship and half a carrier set(AC or 2 fighters). Since Battleships can take 2 shots, and the controller of the units chooses which of their units gets hit, you end up with the US rocking a group of Battleships with a carrier or two and a single destroyer to neutralize enemy subs. You get 3 or 4 hits, no big deal, because nothing actually gets sunk. Japan can’t ever get a fleet large enough, especially being pushed on the mainland by Russia from the North and the UK from the East, and is stuck trying to fend off the increasingly strong depredations of the US fleet.
Meanwhile, Germany can get a solid start against Russia, but it gets bogged down rather quickly, since Russia just buys pure infantry and sits back to defend along the Caucus/Russia line, giving up Archangel and Karelia to solidify itself as a 2 zone front. Germany can’t really break into the Middle East, because the line in the Caucus is held by the USSR and any forces sent to Africa get gangbanged by the UK and US. If Germany’s initial Med. forces take out the UK battleship by Gibraltar, and the northern fleet heads along the Western Europe coastline, they can shut down the US Eastern transport lane and hold Africa, but doing so costs you resources that could be used to buy tanks to try and wear down the USSR.
I’ve done a little reading on the forums here, and heard some people say that this revised edition is well balanced, but it seems absolutely impossible for the Axis to win without some severe lucksacking on rolls. Me and my roomate have been thinking that we’re just going to set a house rule that Battleships do not miraculously repair after every fight, they have to stop by a friendly coastal territory with an industrial complex to repair that point of damage. Hopefully, that will help alleviate the Battleship push.
I also checked out the tourney rules thread at the top of the page, but the link in the first post didn’t lead to a list of rules, so perhaps with those rules it’s not an issue. Can someone provide me with a current link or at least a quick down and dirty of what’s different about these LH rules?