Too bad, we’ll just have to make do.
But thanks for the quick replies!
I have a question about strafing. In most of the games I’ve played Germany attacks Yugoslavia to soften it up for Italy and then retreats into Romania. The problem is that sometimes you end up capturing the territory by accident.
My question is whether you’re allowed to halt an attack once you’ve scored the desired number of hits.
I’m not a very active forum member, but I have played quite a few rounds of A&A 1914 since it came out. I thought this topic was a good place to answer your questions, say something nice about the game and discuss a little strategy. Although, I will have a little moan to start with. My group and I absolutely love the game, but we also recognise there are some serious issues. We never felt the need to use any house rules to balance an A&A game until now.
That said, the balance issues really aren’t all that big. In addition to the rules update/clarification in the FAQ we only needed two minor adjustments. I won’t go into it at length, because this shouldn’t become another topic full of complaints and suggestions for new rules. I’ll just say that we are very happy with the game mechanics, including movement, but we feel the map design screws the Germans. A map where the distance between Berlin and the French border territories is equal to the distance between Berlin and Moscow, or the distance between Vienna and Paris, can’t possibly be balanced. So, in our games, new German units get a one time boost where they’re able to move two spaces. And Switzerland now spawns 6 units instead of 2, because it was too easy for France (early game) and Austria (late game) to use this back door to outflank an enemy advance. Invading Switzerland is still a powerful move. It just takes more commitment now.
As for Serbia. My group and I quite like this rule, because it makes Austria a more challenging faction to play. You really have think about how you’ll spread your forces. After all, you’d rather your units anywhere but Serbia since it’s the only minor aligned territory that can’t be activated by the Allies. You’re right that you can attack Serbia with whatever number of units you like. Just one infantry will fulfil the rule’s requirement. Right now my group often attacks Serbia with a pretty heavy force that is able to take it with average dice rolls. Actually owning Serbia as opposed to contesting it gives you a chance to react when the Italians in Albania contest Trieste one turn one. Incidentally, we are a little peeved that France can activate Albania for the Italians. Clever Austrian positioning and decent dice can deal with this threat, but my group certainly wouldn’t mind if this was addressed in any future rule update.
I’m not sure what kind of starts your friends are using, but I’m with you when it comes to the navy. It has been instrumental in all of the games I’ve played so far. Whoever establishes naval dominance is pretty much in the driving seat. The Allies need it so America and Britain can quickly re-enforce weak spots all over the board. The CP’s need it in order to isolate and overpower France and Italy. Like yours, my games have always involved a naval arms race between Britain and Germany. Though we don’t always come to blows. Usually, we’re happy to stay in port. The risks of an actual confrontation are big, while the disadvantages of a steady arms race and having to stay in home waters are comparatively small.
After all, the CP’s can live with the occasional British or American landing in France or Italy. They just have to prevent landings in Kiel and Leningrad. And the navy can provide cover for small invasion of Scandinavia. Two or three transports with some infantry and tanks can are all you need to take 8 IPC worth of territory. Meanwhile, the Brits prefer to spend most of their energy on conquering the Ottoman empire and contesting southern Russia.
I had a little test game to try out all of your ideas. Thanks again for the advice.
Russia took Mesopotamia. That was so ridiculously easy I can’t believe I never tried it before. The Brits spent everything in India (the G1 naval assault on the home fleet was so succesful that even a full naval buy from the Brits was at risk of being sunk next turn) then moved into Persia, activated Arabia and took Trans-Jordan.
After that it all went down the way Zane predicted it would.
@Darth - If you want to build a Russian battleship, though I’m not you should, I’d definately put it into the Baltic. The Russian Black Sea fleet isn’t always abel to destroy the Ottoman fleet, but you can reasonably expect it to sink at leats one cruiser. There’s little the Ottomans can do with that, and if you really want to, the British are more than able to clear it.
Not to hijack this thread, but we’re thinking about changing the Russian Revolution rule to allow the Central Powers to decline the armistice if they want to. That would keep Russia from “gaming” the rule. Of course, there is only one revolution, so accepting it is a one-time opportunity.
That’s a great idea. It would indeed keep Russia from gaming the revolution. And it I love that the CP’s can choose to fight on for additional IPCs or choose to stop if things look bleak.
Sounds like a good idea BJ.
From the write ups in this topic it looks as though Germany can’t quite capture Paris, but perhaps an Austrian assist will give the CP’s enough oomph to do it.
The Austrian force would have to be pretty big to get cross Northern Italy and still be able to have an impact on the battle for Paris though. And that could spell disaster on the eastern front and in the Balkans.
Actually, as I was writing a had an idea. What if we turned the original idea of Paris or bust around? and let Germany go after Russia the way it usually does, while Austria goes all out in the west to eliminate Italy?
Even with minimal help from Austria and the Ottmans down south, Germany should still be able to force Russia into revolution. Meanwhile, Italy won’t hold out long against a determined Austria.
Obviously, the CP’s would still have to take Paris in order to win, but with now that Italy and Russia have been removed fromt he equasion they ought to be in a good position to do so.
I think you hit the nail on the head Zane.
Paris or bust may look viable at first glance, but the economics of the game pretty much dictate that it won’t work. When the CP head west and try to hold the line against Russia they will barely be able to achieve economic parity with the Allies, let alone superiority.
There’s just no enough to be gained by the CP’s on the western front. Even if you’ve advanced to the gates of Paris Germany will only have gained between 6 and 10 IPC and even that would barely dent France’s income. When you factor in the African IPC’s Germany will lose over the first few turns, the viability of this strategy becomes bleaker still.
There’s much more to be had in Russia. Some 13 IPC’s for all the CP’s combined. And another 12 if you play without the revolution. On top of that, you will have taken out Russia and have reduced the Allied economy by 25 IPC. That just won’t happen when you attack France.
Thanks for all the good ideas!
I wasn’t too sure about activating Persia, because the one time I saw it done it also opened India to counter attack by Austrian en German Forces that survived the war against Russia. Britain had to spend an awful lot of money in India to deal with them and the Ottomans. The CP’s won that game btw.
But a first turn Russian assault on Mesopotamia followed by a British push through Persia would really crank the pressure up on the Ottomans. I’ll definitely try that.
I also like the idea of threatening and Amphibious Assualt, although I doubt I’ll ever actually go for it unless the door is left (wide) open. With only two transports the danger of losing a ship to mines or a few units to an artillery strike is just too great.
I started playing A&A along with a couple of friends about two years ago and we only meet to play about three or four times a year so while we’re not complete noobs we probably still have a lot to learn.That said, I could really use some advice concerning the Ottoman Empire.
Reading through the posts, many of you seem able to contain the Ottomans with apparent ease. In the six games I’ve played so far (5 live and one test game) the Ottomans have actually been quite strong. Sure, they have a difficult time in the first three turns or so, but after they’ve absorbed Britain’s initial strike they’re able to push them back. In the last two games I played, the Ottomans had small but dangerous armies in Africa and Persia by turn 5 or 6 even though Bombay built four units a turn.
The Ottomans usually send their units from Constantinople and the ones they get from Bulgaria into Russia as a clean up crew and spend the rest of the game sending units towards India and Egypt.
Meanwhile, Britain usually activates Saudi Arabia with 2 units from India and takes Trans Jordan with the troops from Egypt. After that it shuttles four units per turn to Egypt or Saudia Arabia. But while that just doesn’t seem to be enough to contain the Ottomans it is enough to compromise Britain’s ability to sustain a meaningful presence in Belgium/Picardy and keep up with a German player who buys a Battleship every turn.
An American landing in Egpyt or Greece can slow the Ottomans down, but even that seems to be a classic case of too little too late.
What would you guys suggest the Allies do?
(Edit: corrected a few typos.)
The conversation has gone in a very different direction, but I still want to reply to something Quintus Fabius said on the first page about Austria helping out in Switzerland. If you don’t want to adjust Switzerland’s status, that is probably the best way to minimize the negative effects on the CP’s early game.
I tried something of the sort in the last game my group played before introducing the house rule in which Switzerland mobilizes six units instead of two.
Austria activated the territory on its first turn and Germany reenforced it with the Munich stack. This meant the allies were unable to contest Switzerland without risking the complete anihilation of either the French force from Burgundy or the Italian force from Piedmont. It certainly succeeded in protecting Germany’s southern territories.
However, for the move to work Austria had to send its forces from Trieste into Venice and send at least half of its forces in Vienna to Trieste to protect it against an Italian attack from Albania (which is usually activated by the French unless it was attacked by Austria, which isn’t possible when Trieste attacks Venice). In order to cover Austria’s southern front (Serbia and Albania) Austria had to divert troops from Budapest that would otherwise have gone to Romania and then Russia. While we’re only talking about 6 inf and 2 art this had a noticable impact on the eastern front.
In most of the games I’ve played so far, the CP’s had very few units left in the east by the time Russia fell. In the game I’m describing here those 8 units from Budapest that didn’t go into Russia were sorely missed. It took the CP’s too long to defeat Russia and that gave Britain the opportunity to send reenforcements through Karelia and Afghanistan. While the CP’s eventually captured Moscow (we don’t use RR rules, because it limits CP earning potential. Though perhaps the CP’s would’ve been better off if we had used it in this game) the British army outnumbered them and would have reactivated Russia and driven the CP’s back. Meanwhile the western front had started to crumble as well.
So while the Austrian help in Switzerland saved the western front from early collapse it compromized the eastern front. All that said, I only tried this strategy once. With a little tweaking a more determined and experienced player may be able to make it work.
And on a side note. I like your idea of movement restriction Kim! Because the larger mobilization protects the CP’s early on, but it really screws France later in the game when Austria is making decent money and can afford to send large armies into Burgundy. Allowing just one unit to pass at any one time feels a litte too restrictive though. I’d make it five or six. That way invading Switzerland is still a viable tactic, but its impact wouldn’t be quite so dramatic.