Professor Flashy's 20 Point Formula

Show off your A&A photographs and Game maps.
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Flashman
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Professor Flashy's 20 Point Formula

Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 2:00 pm

Over the coming weeks I shall be reviewing every A&A World map I can find posted, and applying the following formula to rate each map out of twenty; one point to be scored for each of the following criteria:

1. RIO DE ORO
First and most important is that this key territory MUST be correctly placed on the map, i.e. in the Western Sahara; or preferably left off the map altogether.

2. THE SUEZ CONUNDRUM
The Sinai penninsular (and thus control of access to the Suez canal) MUST be correctly placed in EGYPT. It might be acceptable for it to be a separate territory on a map of appropriate scale, but NOT to be part of Trans-Jordan/Palestine.

3. EUROPEAN MOSCOW
The Soviet capitol MUST be placed correctly in Europe, not in central Asia.

4. EASTERN FRONT STRUCTURE
This MUST show a correct linear front not interrupted by noticable "bulges" such as the abominable "West Russia" salient in AAR. It should feature an impassable (to armour) Pripet Marsh territory to correctly represent manouver limitations in this region.

5. WESTERN EUROPE STRUCTURE
This MUST show a correct depiction of the Denmark/West Baltic seaboard, with no silly extention of France/Western Europe over Saxony and Denmark. However it must not allow the Allies a direct route from England to Germany across the North sea.

6. RESPECT INDIA
The second most populous country on Earth MUST be given due respect for it's population, history and contribution to the allied cause. Lumping it together as one territory with a pathetic 3 IPC value loses you a point.

7. NO PAKISTAN SYNDROME
The map MUST NOT feature territory names such as Pakistan, Indonesia or others coined after WWII.

8. GEOGRAPHY
The map MUST NOT contain irrational geographical structures such as Japan as one monster island, or a land bridge from Northern Ireland to Scotland. This point will also be lost if important areas are left out altogether, such as not featuring south America.

9. A MOMENT IN TIME
The map MUST be set at a specific time in history, with all ownership accurate for that moment. At the absolute outside designations such as "Spring 1942" are acceptable, but general ranges such as "anytime between jan and june '42" are not.

10. ACCURATE AFRICA
The three territories (or their equivalents) of French West Africa, Italian East Africa and Madagascar MUST show correct ownership as in 10 above. These three areas are so often incorrectly depicted that they justify a point in their own right.

11. THE WIDE ATLANTIC
It MUST NOT be possible for ships to cross the Atlantic ocean (i.e. from north America to UK/France/Spain/Morocco) in one turn. give those U-boats a fighting chance.

12. WHAT'S IN A NAME?
The map MUST NOT feature irrational territory names. For example, if naming a territory after a town (never a good idea) you cannot then divide it into such nonesense as "Northern Novosibirsk" and "Southern Novosibersk". Also, there is no point whatsoever in adding unneccesary adjuncts to a name, for example calling Madagascar "French Madagascar" when it is in fact THE ONLY MADAGASCAR ANYWHERE.

13. NATIONAL INSIGNIA
If using national flags you MUST be consistent. If you use the NATIONAL flag of one power, you MUST use the equivalent flag for each of the others. Or, use only national aircraft roundels. But BE CONSISTENT.

14. NO CLUTTER
The map MUST NOT be cluttered with petty information regarding terrain, weather etc. I freely admit this has been a fault with my maps which I intend to deal with in future editions.

15. LEGIBILITY
The map MUST be clear to read at a glance, with easily readable text and icons.

16. COLOUR SCHEME
The chosen colour scheme MUST have distinct colours easily identifiable, so DO NOT include lots of similar colours such as tans, yellows, oranges etc.

17. ARTISTIC MERIT
I will award a point for a map which is pleasing to the eye as an overall work of art, distinct from the technical criteria listed above.

18. NO POINTLESS DECORATION
The map SHOULD NOT be plastered with superfluous decorations, such as a photo of American field artillery in action - in the middle of the Atlantic.

19. NEUTRALS ARE HUMAN TOO
Neutral countries MUST have IPC values and be active in the game according to certain conditions.

20. DON'T BE PETTY
The map MUST NOT feature too many petty territories which hve no useful function. Merge such territories together to form larger areas.

In addition I will, at my discretion, deduct points for any further technical and artistic howlers not listed above.
Last edited by Flashman on Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:04 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 3:51 pm

I intended to start by reviewing the 3 official versions, but strangely I can't find decent scans anywhere.
Any help appreciated - preferably with links I can post here - with decent scans of the Nova and MB versions?

Any maps considered, but I need readable scans of complete maps - for example I can't rate Mimmo's map because the scans don't show that crucial west Africa region...likewise Advanced A&A's Deluxe board.

So we'll start with the current version which I'll assume you all know (better scan, anyone?)

NO.1 - AXIS AND ALLIES REVISED

http://www.wizards.com/avalonhill/images/aabigmap.jpg

Rather shockingly the Avalon Hill flagship can only muster a paltry 6 points, largely due to it repeating the many errors of the original.

Points for 7, 14, 15, 16, 18, 20

I could have docked a point under 18 for all those smudges and dials, but they're not that bothersome.

SCORE: 6/20
Last edited by Flashman on Tue Aug 07, 2007 6:44 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:01 pm

NO.2 - A NUCLEAR CATASTROPHE

http://h1.ripway.com/Nuclear/AARMyBoardV3.PNG

Oh dear. Oh dear. Oh dear.

Points for 6, 18, 19

I'd like to ADD a point for heroically championing the cause of India, but that would be unfair to other maps.

SCORE: 3/20
Last edited by Flashman on Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:20 pm

NO.3 - A REALISTIC A&A MAP AND WHAT YOU CAN DO WITH IT

http://www.basesproduced.com/images/oil2.gif

Hardly a work of art, but what a difference it makes to actually do some research and base your map on a REAL MAP OF THE WORLD rather than a scan of some old A&A map you found lying around.

Points for 1,2,3,5,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,18,19,20

Doesn't even attempt national insignia, so loses a point for lack of effort, there. We want SOME colour.

SCORE: 14/20

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:30 pm

NO.4 - AXIS AND ALLIES HYSTERICAL EDITION

Image

Repeats so many common errors...

Points for 5,11,16,19

SCORE: 4/20

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:46 pm

NO.5 - MIDDLEWARE'S AESTHETIC MAP

http://www.harrisgamedesign.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=1429

Points for 3,5,6,8,12,14,15,17,18,20

With a little more attention to historical accuracy could go to the top of the class.

SCORE: 10/20

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:57 pm

NO.6 - THE WAR GAME: WWII

http://www.thewargame.com/ReconPhotos/TourMap.html

Points for 1,3,8,11,12,16,17,19

On first examination this looks a great map, but get out your magnifying glass and the flaws begin to show; too many petty states, horrible eastern front, cluttered with icons and inaccuracies.

SCORE: 8/20

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Post by Flashman » Tue Aug 07, 2007 6:54 pm

NO.7 - AXIS AND ALLIES CLASSIC - MILTON BRADLEY

No scan anywhere!

Points for 7,14,20

Showing it's age dreadfully.

SCORE: 3/20

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