Part 2 Listo of Alpha+ Contributor's Comments

Link up A&A Pacific 1940 and Europe 1940, and you've got Axis & Allies Global 1940.
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Part 2 Listo of Alpha+ Contributor's Comments

Post by Larry » Mon Nov 29, 2010 2:29 am

The Part 2 of a 2 part list of Contributor's comments related to Alpha+


New Scrambling Rules
The rules say that you're allowed to scramble to defend against an amphibious assault, even if there would otherwise be no sea battle. If there would be no sea battle, scrambling forces one. If subs are in the sea zone, they will be dragged into the battle because you can't selectively attack units in a sea zone. In such cases, the defender decides whether or not there will be a sea battle.

Set-Up Change
There's a fine balance between giving UK enough destroyers to defend herself and so many that German u-boats become useless. This needs to be closely watched.

Strategic Bombing Raids
Don't think of it as the bombers "turning around and going home". Think of it as losses of attacking bombers not large enough to register as the loss of an entire bomber unit.(Ref.KFJ’s repulse).
If escorts are changed to hit on a 2, maybe bombers should also attack in the dogfight and hit on a 1?
You've got to be really careful when it comes to handling IC damage. I'm seeing comments about not repairing them until the end of the owner's turn or leaving them "off" for a full round. The idea of shutting down an IC's production for a turn is not to be taken lightly.
I don't think that damaging airbases necessarily means that scrambled fighters can't land there, just that they can't scramble (take off) from there. After all, an airbase isn't necessary for a fighter to land in a territory.
Escorts and interceptors roll to hit. Subtract the number of escort hits from the number of interceptor hits. The resulting number of bombers is turned back, retreating along with the escorts. Remaining bombers carry out SBR, weathering flak as normal.
I'm not saying I like the "turn-back" method per se, just that this would be a minimally invasive way of doing it.
If we're going to double the damage repair cost, we'll want to consider halving the damage cap on ICs (equal to the production value instead of twice the production value). 40 IPCs is huge hole to dig out of. By reducing the cap, the maximum IPC exposure remains the same but you get there twice as quickly.
Still not sure I'm crazy about the on/off thing, especially for ICs. It's really going to hurt powers with only one IC, as they will be forced to pay off all damage completely every round. This will give powers with multiple ICs a huge advantage.
I'd prefer leaving interceptors at 2. Having bombers also attack at a 1 will go a long way toward making SBRs more cost-effective without changing anything else, as interceptors will be more at risk.
I'm really not crazy about the idea of ICs being destroyed. For powers with only one in an area, that knocks out production in that area for two full rounds. Six hits is pretty easy to achieve to knock out a minor IC. As badly as Germany was ponded in the war, it never completely shut down production like that.
Here's how I presented it:
• Escorts fire @ 1, and interceptor casualties are removed.
• Bombers fire @ 1 and interceptors fire @2, and bomber & interceptor casualties are removed.
• AA fires at bombers only.
• Surviving bombers attack facility.
The idea was that the interceptors are looking to shoot down bombers, not escorts. This allows escorts to protect the bombers without acting as shields. Hopefully, this would make both roles, escort and interceptor, worthwhile.

Just for the aspect of being able to do the Taranto raid even partially now (especially with the prospect of German planes joining in), it seems there ought to be another UK fighter in range, starting at Malta or maybe Gibraltar.

Victory Conditions
My local group are put off when it seems our actions in one part of the game just don't matter.
I think the goal of keeping the US in the Pacific can still be accomplished by making the NO swings greater.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
At this point, Japan is going to have a lot of difficulty dealing with the stack.
The situation questioneer is posting about is when Russia puts everything in Amur on turn 1. I feel that's a rookie mistake and the NO should not be tweaked to "fix" it.
With the Alpha setup, it's a lot harder to clear out China, so Japan is going to have it's hands full already dealing with them and trying to take islands. Add the Russians into the mix and it's just too much.
Don't fix it if it ain't broken.
I take back my comment on removing the Soviet AA gun given this change. Japan can concentrate on the war with China and make up for loses if the Soviets get aggressive. Taken all together, I like the balance there.

National Objectives
I don't know if the NO should be increased or not. Maybe it will help (Rus/Jap NAP).

Set-Up Change
. What I do feel strongly about though is removing that darn AA gun from Sakha. I really don't know why that was added.

General Game Balance
I don't think Italy is too strong. They've got what they need now to actually do something instead of just crumple.

I note that Gibraltar is still a huge factor. Axis control of it is difficult and they have trouble making good use of it.

French Navy
Scuttle the French ships in the Med and have the African legions change sides to the capturing country when Paris falls.

Strategic Bombing Raids
I agree that SBR are very rare. In fact, I've never seen one outside of Pacific on its own. The risk/reward is just bad. Often it's not worth it even if there are no interceptors.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
I'd like to see Russia able to place 12 IPCs worth of units anywhere on their Pacific map territories, Novo, or Kazakhstan at the end of the turn that Japan declares war, after Japan places their builds. Japan can place 12 IPCs of units on any of their ICs at the end of the turn the Soviets declare war.

The odds are not great for the Italians. Even if they win, they've got the French coming in to mop them up. Their other options are not appealing either.
The attack on Tobruk will also most likely succeed. If it doesn't, the remaining Italian force is going to be negligible. I wouldn't even worry about the undefended transport. Italy will have enough to worry about with the two Allied navies.
Italy is far worse off with this setup than with the OOB game. This is why I say changes here have to be very carefully considered. I say finish many more games with the current setup and look at the global balance before mucking around in the Med.

Base and IC AA Guns
remove base and IC aaguns

I'd like to see another UK plane on malta or gibraltar or alexandria. I don't think the italian airforce outnumbered the RAF 3:1 in north Africa.
With an additional fighter on Malta, the choice becomes withdrawing from the med and rebuilding the Royal navy (giving italy breathing room) and building a few troops in south africa, as before.
The UK does not have the cash for air base builds, so it should be there from the start (instead of naval).

National Objectives
I'm not sure I understand why the "lend/lease" no is invalidated when germany takes a soviet territory. If the germans own bessarabia, and the allies keep sz 125 clear and archangel is free, why does that stop shipping to russia?
I like the idea that italy should have more and varied 'no's in the med (especially the north african one), and be forced to actually ferry troops around.
Nothing of note really happened in the pacific as I already favoured US pacific buys before the change although the extra island NO for the us and japan was a great addition and something I look forward to fighting over.

General Game Balance
Italy is not too powerful, per se, but is simply disproportionately powerful.
Italy acheived both it's objectives by turn two and there was no stopping them.
The extra major ic (Germany) was also huge and terrifying to Russia which was great as it felt like Germany could really bring serious power to bear on the bear.

Agree with the assertion that any attack or even threat of attack, is unlikely by the UK now.
I'm all about a "sacrificial battleship" so that a taranto style raid could still be made, but if there was only a bb there, or a bb and a sub then it would be a choice to make the "scripted attack"
If Italy can scramble to defend itself then the UK is "forced" to send in boats, which is why I like the idea of altering the airbase/airforce as presented my oakshield, or just having a bb there.

Set-Up Change
If italy is to keep it's two transports (by moving the cr/trans to sz 97) then I also like the proposal to alter the starting units.
I also like the ideas presented for the UK in the med about a proper garrisson for malta and something for gibraltar.

Strategic Bombing Raids
Solution would be to strip the built in aaguns.
Perhaps there could be a special rule for the aa guns built into the bases and factories. Since we already have interceptors to kill the bombers, and escorts to fight back, perhaps the aaguns, on a 1 would just stop the bombing run. The bomber wouldn't be destroyed, but the flak was simply too heavy to accurately hit the target and cause significant damage.
If tactical bombers could hit air/naval bases that would also be a huge incentive.
If the average damage done is 3.5 and there is a 1 in 6 chance to lose the bomber it's not worth it. So make the bombing raid to 2D6 damage instead. Nice and simple. Now, on average a base will take full damage, as will a minor, while a major will still be able to function.
You would have to change the heavy bomber tech to just be roll 2 take the lowest for combat, and/or they are imune to aa fire (but not interceptors) during strategic bombing ONLY.
Maybe only fighters can be interceptor/escorts, but tacs can bomb naval and airbases for 1D6 and stategic bombers do either 2D6 or 2D6 to naval/airbases and 1D6 to factories. I mean they ARE called fighters, tactical bombers and strategic bombers for a reason, eh?
The more I think about it the more I like the 2 for 1 damage. This encourages (and rewards) more strategic bombing campaigns.
Keeping the basics the same is the best way to go and just up the reward slightly. With a higher reward the risk is both very realistic and justified balance-wise.
The reason I really favour only fighters escorting and allowing tacs to bomb bases is the more I play this version, the more I love the idea that air supremacy is now vital.
I don't like the idea that it's better with this version to make one huge attack than run a bombing campaign. The idea of destorying minors and bases are fine but add the 2 ipc damage is way too powerful.
If I'm uderstanding the damage right, there is a 1in6 chance that a single bomber can remove an ic from the game and, on average, 2 bombers will remove an IC more than half the time... That seems way out of line.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
UK attack Japan/ In that situation Japan has too many advantages with the US being unable to take any aggressive action until turn 4. Leaving Japan with the +10 effectively eliminates any incentive for the uk to attack first, except for the most extremely stupid of Japanese moves. I'd wish you'd reconsider the wording on that NO.
"on the soviet's next purchase phase they gain an immediate +10 ipcs.

New Scrambling Rules
The best change is the new scrambling rules as it protected navies from every single faction with either planes or the threat of extra planes.
The new scramble rules meant that since Germany didn't actually attempt a full on sealion the uk was able to draw off resources that could have gone to fighting Russia and not risk a "surprise 4-8 transport build" and an instant loss of london because they didn't buy all inf

I like the idea of an extra med NO, but not any vichy rules or such.

Playtest points
America seems understrengthed.(see Alpha+game 1)

National Objectives
Could you change the #2 NO for the US? Here is my suggestion: Solomon Islands belongs to ANZAC, so technically US could not control the territory unless ANZAC was taken over by Japan and Japan controlled the island before the US.

Collect 5 IPC per turn for the Allies controlling 5 of the 7 following islands: Midway, Wake, Marinaras, Iwo Jima, Caroline, Solomon Islands and Guam.

Strategic Bombing Raids
If bombers do not participate in naval battles, then they would be more likely to bomb in this game as players will be in situations where that's all they can do for a turn in certain theaters while they await their build up of forces in that theater to restart their attrition again.

Unit Cost Changes
I think that Battleships are over priced. Yeah, they got that extra hit capability; but they still only shoot once. Their actual value is ten production points per hit.
Cruisers are over priced too in my opinion. Cruisers have bombardment; but that is nothing really special. It would be cool, if some special ability like extra speed, or a scramble from naval bases during defense like night actions in guadalcanal or some type of pizzaazz could justify their expense. If Cruisers took two hits, then their cost benefit would be same as a submarine (6).
If Battleships threw two dice and maybe one die only if damaged and also were floating anti aircraft guns (non capturable of course) then I for one would think of them as worth the money.

West India/British Colombia
West India and British Colombia get assigned to their proper places...

New Scrambling Rules
The new scrambling rules are great.

Northern Italy Airbase
N.Italy fighter being able to scramble together with the new Sicily one, Taranto has become impossible...
That seems a bit harsh.
Taranto is out of that equation now, not very historical...

The UK should have a genuine choice between Taranto and pulling back planes to defend the UK (or sending them for an Egypt offensive).
We all agreed that Taranto was no longer possible.
- remove the air bases in N.Italy (so that Germans cannot land there) and Sicily (iffy),
- add an air base in S.Italy (so that Italy still gets some air cover)
- only have two Italy fighters, which cannot scramble (in Sicily and N.Italy; the third fig is overkill, the Italian air force should not outnumber the RAF)
- add another sub to SZ97 and move the transport from SZ95 to SZ97
- add a fighter to the UK carrier
- (edit) move the Alexandria fighter to Gibraltar.
If N.Italy airbase stays Germany can land enough planes to make any raid on either SZ95 or 97 fail. I think your setup is all about the choice between taking the BB our or the two transports, according to how agressive the UK wants to be on land.
I'd like to see it later in the game, when the US comes knocking, not active from the start.

please weaken the Tobruk stack...

Likes the naval base
The UK does not have the cash for air base builds, so it should be there from the start (instead of naval).
National Objectives
maybe Midway and Wake should go back to the Hawaii NO block, otherwise Japan will only go for the Aleutians.
If Midway and Wake are part of both the Hawaii NO block and the Pacific island NO they'll be given their proper place...

Set-Up Change
Malta was also the most bombed place in WW2 and had proper air defenses, it should also get an AA gun.
Italy should have less quality forces in Tobruk instead of the independent taskforce it has now (for example, 5 inf 2 art 1 mech).
Ethiopia should have an art to press from the south.
Italy air force was brought further down to 1 fig (a good representation of their capability!).
The DD in SZ72 was not there and isn't needed in the Pacific - it could be removed.
the UK DD in SZ110 could be converted to French and a sub added.
We all liked the idea of having a French transport that could survive until D-Day (merchant navy). It could be stationed in SZ91.
keeping with the logic of the game, they could start with a CC in SZ87. And that's it.
We were thinking that after the fall of Paris certain French units could be automatically converted to German (even if it's Italy that takes Paris).
These would be the units in N.Africa, Syria and W.Africa (not S.France, which fought the Italians), as well as navy stationed off them - the CC in SZ87 and a extra 2CC tran in SZ92 (we all like Germany navy... plus it would get its transport!).
Great calls on UK positioning. The Med fleet is in Alexandria as it should (by the way, the Egypt naval base should also be in Alexandria... It's historic and would give the UK second thoughts about retreating) and it has the option of going Pacific.
I especially liked that the entry to the Med is no longer destroyer blocked, and Germany can send subs there (as it did historically to great effect). Did you ever consider making the Med a UK DD-free zone (as it started out)? You could convert the CC DD in SZ98 to a BB.
Reduction in Trobruk is excellent.
Would like to see the French BB piece on the board, even for 1 turn!

National Objectives
The current NO could change to demanding three out of S.France, Greece, Egypt and Gibraltar. Then, a +5 NO for the north Africa territories from Marocco to Alexandria could be added.
If Midway and Wake would also be part of the Hawaii block NO, the IPC swing of taking them would double (+5 for Japan, -5 for US).
I'd be happy with a +12 IPCs to spend immediately the first turn that France is able to build in Paris.
I think the three NOs have medium/long term possibilites of making Italy even stronger. It doesn't need to go deep into Africa for IPCs (as blueiguana suggests), and can start pressing the Middle East and Russia sooner.
I suggested some time ago that the US should start with minors, not upgraded automatically, but collect its NOs before being at war - except for the W., C. and E.US block NO, where production really went up after the US entered the war. That is an extra 15 IPC per turn, the equivalent of the three automatic upgrades by US4. It would allow the US to upgrade the W.Coast IC to prepare dealing with Japan straight away. Do you think it would solve the problem?

French Navy
Control of the territories would go with the units as normal (if Paris doesn't fall in turn1, tts with other Allied troops or ships at high sea wouldn't be converted).
I'd also like to see the Toulon fleet scuttled (removed from the setup?) and ships off Algeria and Chad changing sides to Germany.
Come on Larry, please get rid of the French Med fleet! It was much bigger, never sailed harbour and was finally scuttled. Its only function in this setup is to prevent an Italian amphibious attack on S.France, which in any event Italy doesn't have to do. If you want to compensate and be true to history, give the French a sub in SZ110 and a CC in SZ87.
I'm also for getting rid of the French fleet, so that the surviving UK ships are kept on the defensive (likely rallying around Malta).
Italy has been neutered, no question - it only has a BB fig tra sub left. But what are the consequences for the UK? The Italy navy cannot take on the combined French and UK fleet: DD CC AC 2figs. This is too tough a nut to crack even for German air: it will take about 3figs 2tacs, with about 3 casualties.

If French forces in N.Africa change sides, then Germany only has to ship a couple of tanks and some air to have a viable Afrika Corps. Being able to throw one-two punches would greatly favour the Axis. Plus, with Syria changing sides the Axis can activate Irak and really start to mess with the Mid East!

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
People just need to play one of these attacks, as Aluroon did, to see it's not worth it in terms of territory taken/Russian units destroyed.
An attack on the USSR is only worth it as part of a pincer offensive on Moscow.
The best choice is to immediately place a tac and start flying it West... Then I wouldn't be happy with immediate placement on the Eastern front.

Strategic Bombing Raids
It seems more complicated than regular combat and has different rounds that make people look at rules.
My experience is that people really like to see that damage pile up.
Minor powers would be also harmed because they would have more trouble reaching the 'off' button... And has krieghund says, we have to be careful about hitting that botton. One round without producing is a huge strategic imbalance.
Tacs should be able to hit air/naval bases (remember Pearl Harbour) but not ICs.
I suggest, very simply, that strategic bombers get to drop their bombs even if they are taken down by interceptors. The real harm for the attacker is losing a 12 IPC unit for the chance of 6 damage.
Interceptors should bring the balance seriously back to the defender. With the larger distances of Global, it is harder to keep fighters with the ICs. I would definitely keep interceptors at 2, even raise them to 3.
Escorts screw with this calculation, because the attacker risks another 10 IPCs... I propose that interceptors merely drive away escorts.
- AA fire against bombers (any type) and escorts. Kill at 1 and remove from play, as normal.
- Surviving strategic bombers drop their bombs on ICs/air/naval bases. Boom.
- Ships shore-bombard air/naval bases in support of an air attack. 1 ship per bomber (any type) only. BB damage capped at 4, CC at 3.
- Interceptors roll at 3. Casualties are first taken from escorts, but those are simply driven back. If there are no more escorts to take casualites then bombers (any type) start to get hit and go down (defender choses which bombers to remove, as normal).
- Escorts roll at 1 (even if they were driven back previously). Interceptors hit go down.
- Surviving tacs get to bomb air/naval bases.
Simple phases, hits based on 1s... Great rules. Doubling the damage - brilliant. Cuts right to the issue of incentives. I'm not in favour of changing this much further.
One way to address this would be to put interceptors back to 2 (an advantage that would be realistic, as pointed by many). However, I really like the 'only 1s to hit' mechanic, it does great things for SBR simplicity!
I'm with otzea and Wild Bill against the facilities incapacitated with any damage. UK and Italy could be put out of production, they might not have enough money to repair fully damaged major ICs. Daedulus is right, why not run with double damage for a while? The damage cap for air/naval bases (maybe minor ICs) could be increased too.
I like Wild Bill's precision of damage in airbases limiting scrambling planes, something similar could be done for naval bases (2 damage ACs/BBs cannot be repaired, 4 damage ships don't get extra 1 movement).
This is why I can't follow Wild Bill on evening up escorts and interceptors at 2 (always assuming bombers fight at 1). Take the example of 1 bom 1 esc v 1 int: interceptor has 50% chance of going down, 33% of killing a same-valued escort. No chance of stopping the raid. Why send the interceptor up?
I have serious hesitations about SBR as currently advanced. I wrote about these some posts ago, but admit they were too boring to read. Udotont touched on the point too: it's not worth sending interceptors up (see page 42 for details).

I'd add that ships could also shore-bombard in support of air attacks on air/naval bases only, their damage being capped at their normal attack value (people that think BBs/CCs are not worth their money - not my case - would be satisfied.
I assume that 1/1/1 in the air battle means both every plane, including bombers, rolls for 1s. This means interceptors are outgunned with same number of escorts, not a good thing.

Coastal Batteries
There's a great opportunity to add coastal batteries (I've seen this in other threads, of the top of my head one by infrastructure), recreating Singapore or the Normandy coast. They could act like AA for ships, for example rolling 1s to hit with a cap of 3 rolls. This would put a premium on air raids that couldn't be targeted, like Taranto and Pearl Harbour.

Victory Conditions
I would just add that VCs have to be held until all powers have played - this gives the chance for UK/US to liberate VCs after Germany/Japan have played. It prevents immediate take down strategies, and it's a good midway point between immediate win and holding VCs for a full turn.

General Game Balance
I would keep the German London NO but, to make sure the US picks up where the UK leaves, allow the US to declare war if London is taken and speed up liberation.

Set-Up Change
Your Alpha+ setup is about 90% perfect, only minor tweaks here and there needed.
Move the Cruiser and Transport down to SZ
96. And add a sub to 95, as in Alpha+
The Toranto raid has simply been made impossible in this setup.
The addition of a UK fighter at Malta, or bomber in UK. Or alternitively the removal of an Italian fighter in exchange for an Italian Bomber in N. Italy could be more fair.
I am all for a garrisoned Malta, and Gibraltar.

I would much rather see an italian battleship offered up as a sacrifice to the dice gods than the knee jerk reaction to beef SZ 95, and make it so strong that UK cant even attack it.
Italy may need the AB at sicily when the americans get over. But that they get to scrable 2 fighters is insane.
I am all for a Taranto raid, with the use of planes encouraged, and a sacrifical lamb Italian battleship.
Destroying the fleet in SZ95 with two fighters scrambling takes up the whole of UK's Med fleet... I'd like to have some UK ships surviving the first turn! And Calvin's right that SZ97 is not even an option.
With that airbase in N.Italy... Germany only has to land one plane there to make sure neither SZ95 nor SZ97 can be hit. Then the UK is staring at an Italian fleet of BB, 2CC, 2DD, sub, 3trans supported by 2 figs. That's not variety, it's an even stronger version of 'UK is forced to leave the Med' that the current setup offers.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
Sensing weakness the, japanese pounced on Amur and Siberia. Granting Russia 10 more IPCs. Germany then took Moscow and plundered that money

General Game Balance
Can we get some German units in the Med (not africa) Destroyer & Transport?

Strategic Bombing Raids
Lack of strategic bombing is a problem, it makes the game poorer.
I agree with no built-in AA, but would allow the use of regular AA guns
- All bombers roll their damage dice at the beginning of the run, bombers killed are taken out of the lower dice;
- Tacs can also bomb air and naval bases (very realistic);.
- Ships can shore bombard air and naval bases in support of air attacks.
I'm particularly against bases being incapacitated with any damage.
Certain places, islands in particular, could be SBR just so scrambling fighters have no place to land.
On/Off ICs is a bad Idea. Its such a hindrance for UK, one lucky roll and sealion becomes unstopabble because UK cant build.
I like the turn around rule....bombers hit by AA dont die all the time, but are forced to turn around. Not sure how to gauge this.
SBR is really flukey. Sometimes you get a 1, sometimes you get a 6. Should we just say you get 4 damage per bomber? or 3 damage? Id prefer a set ammount to total randomness.
My position is now.....Flat Rate damage for SBR per bomber. Either 3, or 4.
If they can get in range, and past the fighters, and the AA guns, and hit the target, the damage should be standardized. with SO MANY variables between the bombers and their target.
Also allow damage to TRIPPLE a target. So its worth bombing en masse. Minors, ports and airbases are so resistant to damage because they are capped at 6.
Or cap the damage at their value. and if you EXCEED the value (30, 15, 12) then the facility is DESTROYED

Neutral Blocks
I think the rules are perfect the way they are.

Set-Up Change
No AAguns in Volgograd nor New South Wales either?

Major and/or Minor ICs
I don't like this one for Japan...they really sometimes need to build a major in Manchuria or Kiangsu.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
Japan is more than willing to trade $10 = 2inf,1art to USSR for wiping out 18inf and an AAgun ($60 worth of material!!!). That's 18inf that could've helped Germany by round 7, but now they are gone.
It pays to invade as Japan no matter what, USSR delays the inevitable if it makes a stand or attacks. $10 is hardly an incentive NOT to attack as Japan.
The Russian/Japanese Non-aggression treaty is OK- there are now good reasons strategically to attack and NOT to attack each other here.
I do support the 12IPC idea for the Jap-Ruso Non-agression NO. Only to be spent immediately and placed immediately on the territory attacked or if no tt attacked, place in Amur, Sib or Sakha or combo of all.

By the way, as a heads up for Alpha+...looks like you can still succeed with a G4 Sealion. G3 Sealion I think is dead, if not, real risky...

Sounds a little too much "game within the game"- not good.

Victory Conditions
In the most current setup, that was my observation also in my games. For balance, this may be good, however the 6VC was the main rule that gets US involved offensively in the Pacific.
If you keep the 6VC rule you don't need the US split NO. Vice Versa is also true, if you keep the 7VC rule you DO need the US split NO.

General Game Balance
Keep 6VC
Keep Island NO
Keep 5IPCs for Philippines/Guam NO
Get rid of Alaska/Hawaii/Mexico etc. NO
Get rid of US split NO
Get rid of minor IC to major IC rule (its overbearing for the US- slows them down too much)

US Minor ICs
Having USA start with all minor ICs is a stroke of Genius!

Stop whining about Taranto
Taranto raid usually spells doom for Italy's chances on taking Egypt and the Middle East most games, and for Japan to even send some planes over to the Europe side requires taking some kind of territory in the MIddle East.
New Scrambling Rules
The UK can now defend the English Channel with its 3 FIGs! Which means they'll have a starting fleet rather than starting from scratch now!

Neutral Blocks
How about "Attacking any True Neutral causes other True Neutral Countries IN THE SAME CONTINENT (or REGION) to become Pro-other side"?
Can't see how the True Neutrals were put into the game in the first place if you can't really do anything with them as the Axis.

My opinion is just to leave the Med wars outside and allow for just a very risky Taranto raid. Just like it is now in the Alpha +.
My two cents on Northern Italy airbase: I like it, exactly because it can be used by the Germans too.

General Game Balance
What kills the Europe Axis now is the economy. If they can't get to at least 90+ IPC/turn, then the Allies will win just by outproducing it. But Germany needs most of the USSR it can reasonably reach just to break 65 IPC/turn, so Italy needs to get to 25-30 at minimum. Which is the whole Med (including 1 NO), achieved while holding against a fully functioning UK.

Victory Conditions
I support the 6VC winning condition for the Pacific board. UK can concentrate against Italy, bringing planes and infantries from India too. If UK does that, thus winning the game in Europe, then this should come at the risk of losing the game in the Pacific.

New Scrambling Rules
If i (Germany) make a strategic bombing run on UK AB, then an amphibious assault on UK, with scrambled enemy fighters, and occurs, meanwhile, a sea battle between german and english naval forces:
Which event comes first?
I thought:
1 - SBR ( so it can deny the scrambling action)
2 - Scrambling (if possibile)
3 - Amphibious Assault

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
Think that Soviet Far East Army is too weak than Japanese one.

Set-Up Change
Amur – 5 Infantry, 1 artillery
Sakha – 5 Infantry, 1 mech, 1 tank, 1 fighter, 1 AA gun
Buryatia – 5 Infantry, 1 artillery.
Based on Taranto being in sz97 and thus requiring a battleship be presents. The following changes (switch actually) will probably be made to the Italian navy:
Sea zone 95: Cruiser, 2 destroyers, sub and 2 transports.
Sea zone 97: Battleship, cruiser and transport.

Strategic Bombing Raids
SBR can be done by Strategic bombers and Tactical bombers (details on page 49)
SBRs can be launched only from operative Airbases.
All AA guns removed from installations.

Strategic Bombing Raids
Change when damage is removed. If a player had to remove damage at the end of their turn (possibly after collecting the next turns money), it would mean that bombing a base or factory would start to become REALLY interesting, have strong flavor, and serious game consequences.
The benefit to the attacker is now so greatly increased that the defender will be forced to keep fighters in place to ensure the success of operations the next turn. Keeping the defenders fight better ensures the balance and to maintain their part of an arms race while not dominating the game.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
I think the solution for the NO for Russian/Japanese is that player making the DOW gives the other player 10IPCs at that time. It eliminated the sneak play of giving the axis 10 IPCs extra by having Japan attack the turn before Moscow falls.

General Game Balance
I'd like you to consider removing the handover of money after a capital has been captured the first time, at least not to the other player. Recapturing one's own capital is so often folly since you can't hold it again against the counterattack. I'd like to suggest that the after the first time the country getting taken out gives the money to the bank.

Set-Up Change
My opinion on your Aplha + setup is that it changes too much.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
As much as 30ipc would be a good penalty for breaking the treaty.

I have failed to ever see a problem in the way Gibralter is set up. I have seen the Axis take it at times and close off the Med from the West.

Historically Malta would probably require an airbase and a fighter, but could not the UK build one(air base) there and move a fighter from Egypt or the U.k. Don't see a problem as it stands now.

General Game Balance
I have not seen any German action in the Med theatre at all in any of my games. It seems that they should have an easier time getting there.
I think with three types of planes now an opportunity has been missed to specialize their actions. Fighters should target only other planes. TAC Bombers should target only land and sea units and Strategic Bombers should target only Facilities.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
I do not think a penaly of 20 or 30 ipc's would be too much, but 10 is to little IMHO.

Strategic Bombing Raids
This is where I have seen a problem/difference compared to previous versions of the game. There really are an unbelievably small number of SBR's in this game compared to the Milton Bradley version of the game where you went with tech rolls to get Heavy bombers so you could blast the hell out of Berlin.
Instead of interceptors and escorts actually roling dice to fight they should just have an automatic effect on the bombing run.
Another idea is to have bases repaired at the end of the round. so if you damage the enemy air or naval base they can not take advantage of them the next round.

Strategic Bombing Raids
I have played 15+ A&A40 games and haven't seen a single SBR. (SBR were rather common in my Revised games) As I see the problem: interceptor rules are cool in theory (dodgefight, yay!) but they have pretty much killed the SBR as an option. SBR is too much risk for too little reward.
1) Make dodgefight non-lethal. First, participating fighters shoot at each other with 1.
2) Do not penalize the attacker twice. If an attacking bomber is shot by AA the attacker still rolls for damage.
3) Increase the damage. Roll an extra die, choose the highest result (I do not like 2D6 and "2 IPC per damage while repairing" because you could do 10+ damage with one bomber - seems to harsh considering the risk involved for the attacker, i.e. 1/6 possibility of losing 12 IPC and missing a turn with a bomber).
Finally, bases should be knocked out when they have MORE than 3 damage but repair occurs at the beginning of mobilize new units step. This wont affect ICs (because you cannot use them before mobilize) but makes SBR against bases a meaningful choice. Note: For more details see page 35.
Destruction of facilities - this can hurt bad and may have several unintended consequences, especially as main production centers of small powers are concerned.
Tactical bomber's ability to attack bases. I do not see the need or reason for extra complexity. Either allow tac bombers to attack any facility or do not allow them to participate in a SBR.
I think, more important. I am afraid that the proposed system will work like this: a) as an attacker you wont conduct a SBR unless you have clear air superiority taking into account how many fighters the defender MIGHT scramble - because air units cost a lot; b) if you conduct a SBR with a superior force then the defender wont scramble - because...air units cost a lot. In other words, the proposed system has the same flaw as the original rule.

Russian/Japanese None-aggression Pact
Either could bypass the boarder clash through Mongolia.
I think that 10 ipc's worth of units placed immediately are much better then $ for reasons mentioned about Germany getting extra ipc's. I would steer clear of any where on the Pac map though because I wouldn't want Jap units popping up on islands, or if Russia is attacked through China those extra Russian should end up at that boarder (Euro map).
You could have the units show up after the battle (reinforcements), and place them on one of the tt attacked if it was successfully defended, of adjacent to any tt that was attacked. This would get units closer to that front.
The easiest way would be have them placed immediately at your capital or any IC you control.
Japans turn is after Russia's, so the only way that Jap would lose the NO to the allies is if Russia managed to sail around and take Japan (Tokyo) as its first aggression against Japan. So really Russia is the only one that is in jeopardy of getting the $ from the NO and loosing it to the axis before they can spend it as written.
I would like a way to get the free units near the boarder clash, but not have it effect the battles going on at that moment.
Instead of giving the $ to Russia immediately, have them collect it at the beginning of their very next turn following a Jap DOW, only if Moscow is in Russian hands.
I would have liked to see say 3-4 units "pop up" in the region in question, but another 3-4 units immediately added to that Russian 18 scares the hell out of me.
I do like this way of handling it. For either side the thought of getting more high end units into the area is very cool. I'm concerned about a couple of things. 1) adding them immediately to the tt(s) attacked could drastically change the out come. 2) where would the units go if Russia doesn't attack Jap, but just enters China (which requires a DOW).
This way by placing them after the battle, but on the aggressors turn you would have the choice of attacking or retreating away on your turn. You may not want your free units sucked into the battle.

Sicilian Airbase
Now with the Help of the German air force (G1), it might be over the top with up to 6 air units defending the Italian navy from the get go.
For the AB on Sicily: It may prove to give Italy to much def early on, but they sure need it once the US comes over.
If Italy looses the Sicilian AB to the US or the UK though it could be even tougher for Italy/Germany to attack the allies based there.

Set-Up Change
Maybe an AB is warranted for Norway in set-up?

The only thing is that with the new scramble from N Italy (and maybe AB on Sicily) the Germans can fly down some air units G1 to make it more costly to UK. So the sacrificial lamb may end up being more of a sacrifice for the UK.

National Objectives
#1-It makes sense that Russia should have to own all their own orig tt before they get paid for German tt's. Japan should have the chance to deny it.
#1 shows lend lease to western allies and no allied units-the Jap/Russian front shouldn't affect it. (its been this way from AA50 to G40 OOB)
#2 shows more of Russia's turning point in the war, and they should have their eastern boarders secure to get it IMO.
One thing is for sure, don't tie them both to axis units on Russian soil, it would be to easy for Jap to deny them both.
When the Soviet Union becomes at War with Japan
4. Collect 10 IPCs (only once), at the beginning of the Soviets very next turn following a Japanese DOW, as long as Moscow is still Russian.
When France is at War
Troop Bonus: When the territory of France is liberated, for the first time only, the player controlling this territory immediately places 4 French Infantry units on it.

West India/British Colombia
You should probably reword them, and remove the continents listed for all orig UK tt on Euro map + BC & Yukon go to London econ; and all orig UK tt on Pac map + W India go to Calcutta econ - to put it to rest.

Strategic Bombing Raids
Have the same value in the dog fight (either 1 or 2)
I think if the cap was at three interceptors you might see more SBR..
I think that one thing that might help is to have each damage marker an AB has puts up one less ftr to scramble (same as an minor IC with damage mobilizing units). It fits very nicely with the 3 units scramble for AB's. That way just one damage marker would have some effect on it.
First thing that turns me off from attempting an SBR is the risk/reward that many have mentioned. I would be in favor of evening up the dogfight values at one so the attacker has less risk, and fewer planes would be lost.
Precision of damage in airbases limiting scrambling planes, something similar could be done for naval bases (2 damage ACs/BBs cannot be repaired, 4 damage ships don't get extra 1 movement). Normally you already decide on how much IC repair you want...
I wouldn't mind the bmrs also rolling in the dog fight, but not at the same as the interceptors/escorts.
I think AA firing at all, then a dog fight would result in more planes going down. Evening up the dog fight (as above) 2/2 frts, 1 for attacking bmrs seems better. You could even allow tacs to go in to the SBR (attack at 1 as an escort in the dog fight, or drop a bomb) just not both.
I'm not a fan of you get nothing if you have any damage. I like what you referred to as precision bombing to AB too (many people have suggested damage should directly effect scramble, now with only 3 planes able to scramble it makes a lot of sense). I think we should stick to 1/2 damage (3 markers) completely shuts down AB/NB. I like paying extra for damage (2 ipc's), but as I said paying 40 ipc's to bring a major back on line w/full damage is to expensive.
Go with ftr are 2/2, tacs are 1/1 in the dog fight (keep bmrs out of dog fight would just be even more of an advantage to attacker and would allow bmrs to have double duty).
You would have to work something out for Heavy Bmrs in SBR. Maybe roll two dice each and get choice would still work. They would also get the 2x the dice, so should be more potent taking the higher of two rolls.
I also like having just one damage effect what AB/NB can do, but wouldn't like it to shut them down completely. Use the same damage mechanism for minor IC's for AB/NB. Each damage point removes one plane from the scramble ability-3 (or more) damage shuts it down completely as it does now for scramble and +1 movment.
Tacs-1/1 (attacker option of dog fight or bombing, not both)
Bmrs-bombings only- 2x dice
Tacs-when used in bombings- 1x dice
Either bmrs/tacs can be used as a casualty for dog fight (even if tac isn't used in dog fight)
AA (built in) fires at any plane that is bombing after dog fight.
Every thing else the same.
Hey Larry I think your right about not allowing more damage then it cost (when it cost 2 ipc's per maker) for an IC. The removal would stop it from taking more damage then it is worth. BTW a major cost 30 ipc's, so lets make sure we're not loosing it totally with 10 damage markers (20 ipc's to repair).
Would it be possible to down grade your own IC if it takes x-amount of damage?
I have voiced concerns about paying 2 ipc's for damage. I personally don't like it. There should be more reward, but this is to extreme. When Larry first came up with this I even suggested he tone it down buy paying 2 ipc's for damage only when an IC is bombed into the negative. You could say that the facility has severe damage when bombed into the neg (-).
I have also agreed with posts to use 2X the dice total for bmrs, in stead of raising the damage to 2 ipc's.
I also think that removing an IC when it is damaged to meet its cost should be aborted too.
SBR is down for several reasons
1) Range, it is hard to get units with different ranges into the same fight.
2) Escorting your bmrs leaves other battles thin, or the reward for SBR isn't worth the risk.
3) Def interceptors roll at 2, escorts roll at 1 deters people from doing SBR, just like radar did in the past (its just a fact, even though I think the def should have a slight advantage in the battle).
What is clear though is that those interceptors rolling 2's, and escorts getting 1's scares a lot of people away from SBR. If both have 1's, or both at least have the ability of getting 2's I think it might help.
I think you have been thinking about getting tacs involved in bombings of AB/NB. I would like to see tacs involved in all SBR campaigns if your going to do it (just to keep things kiss).
I have posted about making the tac an X-factor in SBR (as you have read before). I have a slightly different twist now. Pairing tacs/ftrs in normal attacks gives +1 to one of the air units. Why not allow a tacs/ftr pairing give the escort (+1) a roll of 2 (you want more fire power commit more units).
How bombs are dropped would have to be worked out (maybe 2X dice total for bmr, 1X dice total for tac; or bmrs role 2 dice, tacs roll 1 dice; or have a bmr automatically hit for say 2 + dice, and tac just dice total).

General Game Balance
Air is really taking a hit with all the new rules though (SBR/scramble). If we want to be able to do all these things should we maybe be looking at a cost reduction for air units at some point?

New Scrambling Rules
I like the scramble rule. It allows the UK fleet to defend India or an underdog allied fleet to survive off of Australia. Much of the UK fleet survived the first turn. I also witnessed a Russian first turn purchase of a destroyer and a fighter for Novgorod. The other two Russian fighters were moved there as well. That caused a double take.

Set-Up Change
The German u-boats were hard to utlize. UK simply had too many destroyers to kill before they could do their interdiction thing fully. My only gripe.
I'd vote "no" to changing the med setup

Strategic Bombing Raids
With regards to strategic bombing - be careful w/ changing these rules. If Germany has fighters positioned in Western Germany to defend against bomber attacks then they probably aren't helping much on the Eastern front, eh?
I think allowing tactical bombers to hit naval and air bases would be a fantastic change and accurately represent some of the strategy that went into the Pacific war. Along that line of thought I would support the removal of air and naval bases after x amount of damage.

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Re: Part 2 Listo of Alpha+ Contributor's Comments

Post by MarkM79 » Sun Jan 02, 2011 10:55 pm

What about limiting the effect that a destroyer has on subs? Example: If one side has 5 subs in a sea zone then how can only one Destroyer cancel all the effects of the 5 subs? Maybe a two for one ratio.

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Re: Part 2 Listo of Alpha+ Contributor's Comments

Post by xxstefanx » Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:58 pm

MarkM79 wrote:What about limiting the effect that a destroyer has on subs? Example: If one side has 5 subs in a sea zone then how can only one Destroyer cancel all the effects of the 5 subs? Maybe a two for one ratio.
You have to think of 1 destroyer piece as a destroyer flottilla (or more flottillas I do not know what Larry's exact representation is). If Larry thinks this fleet can cover one SZ (sonar, radar) then it does not matter how many subs there are.

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Re: Part 2 Listo of Alpha+ Contributor's Comments

Post by met » Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:50 pm

i think , there some changes that probably need a smart thought but, if you want to keep things like these, probably the main point is to give a UK( london) a sub.

Unhistorically Uk doesn't have a sub and give a sub to it ( probably sea zone 106 or 109 but even a sea zone that could reach in a turn zone 110 ) allows a strange mechanism that made london a bit safer.

the other problem is the japan air fleet .
I think japan need to have a lot of tactital bomber but not much fighter.
probably all of his fleet should be composed by tactial bomber .
So with a fleet of 21 airplanes, if 8 are fighter =80 we could convert into 7*11=77
adding an inf in CHina front.

This cause every time we play, japan chose to treat india , taking island and waiting for USA, waiting while his IC are growing the troops on land to destroy calcutta . His fleet his to powerful to being destroyed and every place USA steps are in range of 21 airplanes or more and all naval fleet in charge of japan.

in my global balance italy shouldn't be defend by air german fighter easly as it is now. maybe 2 Air bases in Italy are too much .

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