Imperious leader wrote:So what do you want in this version?
What I want in Alpha +4 is for the US player to not be essentially non-entity for the first three hours of the game. At present, even after the first three turns, the US is still two full moves away from posing any signicant threat to either Japan or Germany. With a fast move in Global 1940 Alpha +3 taking around one hour, the US player is basically twiddling his thumbs, doing a build once an hour, watching China get annihilated by Japan's massive air power, and bored for the rest of the time.
This can be accomplished in one of three ways:
1. Speeding up the full round cycle by changes to game mechanics
2. Adding a mechanism that allows the US player to be a bigger factor prior to the US entering the war
3. Coming up with a different setup in which the US is already in the war
For step #1, I would combine UK Pacific and ANZAC into one power (or at least provide an optional rule allowing that), eliminate convoy zones (or make them optional), and implement other time-saving changes that would speed up turns.
For step #2, I would introduce a lend-lease mechanism whereby one "Allied" power of the US receives non-infantry units costing up to 12 IPCs for free each round during its "Place Build" phase, to be placed at any of its existing factories. This would stop as soon as the US enters the war, which would give Japan and Germany some incentive to bring the US into the war, rather than gaming the DoW system in the Pacific by Japan doing everything it can to crush China and prepare for turn 4 war and explicitly not attacking the US, UK, or ANZAC. There is not much downside to this approach currently for the Axis, as the UK Pacific and ANZAC are not strong enough economically to build any significant deterrent forces to Japan obtaining a strong economic advantage on turn four.
For step #3, Declarations of War go away. The US is already at war. The setup is different, Japan and Germany further advanced, but the US starts having more to do immediately.
Please don't misunderstand -- even in Alpha +3, the US players first five actions are crucially important to the overall Allied performance, but it is a horribly boring and frustrating situation to be in as the US player. I'm tempted often to bring a book or something if I am going to be playing the US.
Other changes I would like to see:
1. The US needs to be a bigger threat against Japan or Japan needs a motivation to achieve its outer defense chain national objective. Perhaps Japan is penalized 2 IPCs per island in that objective chain that it does NOT hold if it is at war with the US. This would lead to situations in which Japan has to defend these islands instead of completely ignoring them, which in turn would take a spot of pressure off of the UK, ANZAC, and Russia and which would also encourage some of the island hopping tactics that are rarely seen in Alpha+3 games.
2. There needs to be a bigger penalty for Japan attacking Russia. The existing neutrality is not neutrality if, after crushing China, Japanese troops can attack Russian territory not bordering Mongolia without violating the neutrality. Any attack on Russia territory by Japan should activate Mongolia.
3. General consensus online is that the Allies are underpowered. Andrew game provide more information about this, but as I recall 10-12 IPCs are typically bid by someone wanting to play the Axis. This could be resolved by the addition of some strategically placed infantry units (Egypt needs one) or it could be resolved with some additional national objective dollars.
That's my two cents.