The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands)

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Craig A Yope
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Craig A Yope » Tue Sep 03, 2013 9:22 am

But as Flashman points out, there were specific military reasons for going to those places (island groups) that the game doesn't readily model.

The "carrot" that you are suggesting isn't big enough in my opinion to get the desired response that you seem to want.

If you are adverse to rules changes that drive the game in the direction that you want, then the carrot has to be bigger. But the problem with a larger IPC reward is that the money can be shifted to other areas of the map. By using a VP/VC/VT system to drive gameplay in the Pacific, the benefits can't be used somewhere else.

The idea of the game is to win. The main way to defeat you opponent and win the game is to take their capital. The A&A universe has evolved a bit and now there is a secondary path/alternate route with that being the victory city system. No matter how you slice it, the game is still driven by these main goals. And with that comes optimal paths to achieving those goals. Of which the Pacific Islands aren't a part of that.

To get these islands to being part of the paths to eventual victory, you need to make a part of that victory system. Or at least you need to make them the logical stepping stones to reaching the existing goals of the game.

When last we played the Global game, we limited the use of the three move sea movement to the non com phase. All amphibs were two move attacks. That had the affect of stretching out the oceans and made the attacker do a bit more of the intermediate attacks to get staging spots for later advances.

That simulated the tactical nature of amphibs and had the indirect effect of then making these usual bypassed territories more important. It also made some of the island groups with ports a target because of their importance as place that the Allies need to become jumping off points. Take them and they become places where you non com to with follow up forces for later attacks.

That is an example of a simple rule that is universal in nature but will come closer to getting your desired effect. And it gets around the extra IPCs problem that I brought up concerning your idea.

Black_Elk
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Black_Elk » Tue Sep 03, 2013 2:19 pm

It's true, as you and flashman have pointed out, that the economic carrot is not everything and as an enticement may prove insufficient by itself, but I see this as the clear first step to getting the islands into play.

Once they all have value, then you can consider how the rest if it shakes out. Now, A&A being what it is, it may very well happen that a player elects to spend the IPCs gained here in a different theater. Launching an extra US fighter to Europe say, or pushing ground troops in Asia, but at least it is more likely now that these areas will be contested.

I would say the simplest way to anchor the action here is to use starting factories. A starting factory is always defended, at least for a time, so if you had one in Iwo, or Hawaii, then you are more or less guaranteed to see action in those places.

Beyond this, an adapted Victory points scheme could do nothing but help as far as I am concerned, so long as it is universal and not overly burdensome in the explanation. Or the idea you suggest about non com movement (though that seems only to apply to G40, the principle seems sound. I think G40 is going to provide more flexibility in terms of rules adaptations, because the people playing are generally more experienced.)

Basically there are two issues we need to address in tandem to ensure that this theater of war is functional... Two gameplay tendencies which players currently adopt that we can try to fix...

1. IPCs in one part of the world being used in another, for magnified drives towards the capitals (i.e. all the money spent driving one way or another.)

2. Victory Cities and victory mechanics being ignored in favor of the old "capture the capital" dynamic.


If the increase in money is complemented by starting factories and additional victory cities/territories, then that money becomes grounded. Likewise a VC that has a factory/increased IPC value, becomes impossible to ignore, because it's weight in the game is not just an abstract condition of victory, but a real one. What I mean is that a player is more likely to acknowledge the overall role of VCs in determining the victory, when the VC territories have a clear and significant value according to all the other mechanics of the game.

A starting factory at the VC forces that territory into play, and makes it so you don't just ignore VCs in favor of a capital push, because the VCs become functionally more relevant, and visually more relevant. It's becomes less "a little red dot" on the board, and turns into something more important for the gameplay. Likewise a VC prevents the money from being totally redirected, on the principle that these territories have a role in determining overall victory in the game. I like a VC or Victory Territory scheme, because it is a universal rule, and one which is already present to some extent in the games (at least since Revised) and thus familiar.

So again, I am not opposed to it, but I do think that a Victory City/Territory scheme is best when supported by increased money, and additional starting factories to anchor them in the gameplay.

That would be my approach anyway. Either change in isolation might lead to distortions, but together they build off one another to strongly encourage the kind of gameplay patterns we wish to see. I think what you accomplish here with more money and a few additional starting factories (like the ones at Iwo or Hawaii) is to bring the VC territories fully into the game. It also has the benefit of avoiding, for example, the feeling of a 'hollow' victory under the current VC scheme, which some players complain of. The idea that some VCs just don't have a large enough influence on the broader game to be so significant in terms of the victory conditions, leading people to still opt for the capture the capital dynamic. What VCs need is more weight. More money to make them viable, and anchoring factories to ensure that the theater is active from the outset.

Notice for example, what the starting factory in India and Karelia have done to the gameplay in 1942 sec ed. They serve as anchors for the action where, even if they have to be abandoned in later rounds, at least in the early rounds, players will work to defend them, or try to capture them.

What is wrong with the idea of a starting factory on any territory that is also a Victory City? To me that has a strong internal logic

Caractacus
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Caractacus » Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:41 am

Yoper's suggestion about movement and Amphibs is what I have done in some games. It's an improvement, but then the map would need a rethink to make that work really well...
Caractacus.

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Der Kuenstler
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Der Kuenstler » Thu Oct 24, 2013 12:02 pm

I just read this and totally agree with black_elk - make all the islands - everything of historical value - worth at least one IPC.

Remember, taking a territory worth "1" is actually a swing of "2" as it denies the enemy country "1" in income.

It is the simplest way to get these territories involved in play. I'm going to look into changing my map this way.

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elbowmaster
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by elbowmaster » Fri Nov 29, 2013 3:54 pm

Many many moons again, when the AA:Hasbo CD was out, someone made a very cool set up adjustment.

In order to get some good stuff going in the pacific, they added an IC in Solomons. It made for some pretty cool pacific play.

Caractacus
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Caractacus » Sun Dec 01, 2013 8:15 am

elbowmaster wrote:Many many moons again, when the AA:Hasbo CD was out, someone made a very cool set up adjustment.

In order to get some good stuff going in the pacific, they added an IC in Solomons. It made for some pretty cool pacific play.
I am sure it did - but that is so far from realistic that I can't force myself to try it...
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Der Kuenstler
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by Der Kuenstler » Sun Dec 01, 2013 9:08 am

If you think of the ICs as "factory/supply centers" as Larry originally did, it's easier to imagine that.

"My own rational and ability to accept this rather unrealistic process is to NOT think of these areas as manufacturing centers but rather as staging areas and supply bases." -LH, Aug. 2009

WILD BILL
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Re: The Case against 0 ipc territories (esp. Pacific Islands

Post by WILD BILL » Sun Dec 01, 2013 11:52 am

I'm leaning towards a new vic point system (Yoper). Having capitals worth say 3 pts, secondary cities worth 2 points (like Leningrad, or Warsaw). Then have island groups, or other strategic areas worth 1 vic point. You could easily group islands, or territories together. Like DEI, Solomon/islands northeast of Australia, control of say the Mid East, all of Africa, or all of China. Many of these same groups of territories give an NO for their importance. Maybe a bit of a shift from IPC to vic pts would be worth pursuing. Could also link these vic pts to bonus IPCs.

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