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Axis Empires: Totaler Krieg!» Forums » Rules

Subject: delay box... rss

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Frank Müller
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I just bought AETK and I am browsing through the rules. I play games and wargames since 3 decades but I cannot remember to have read a more counterintuitive and complex rule system untill now. Noneheless it looks interesting because of the many options the card gives to the players, so I will sacrifice 1 week or so with learning how to play the basics.

A question to the pros of this game: Maybe I am not much into the concept of the game but one of things I dont grasp is the delay box. Eliminated ground combat units with white stripes are not really out of game but only "delayed" a certain number of turns?

Does that mean that you really never can eliminate certain ground armies (those with white stripes) but only give them a nice out time untill they enter the game some turns later again without any additional construction cost for the owner?

If I cannot finally kill them, why should I attack such units at all? why not only concentrating my attacks on non-white stripe targets? And what is the in-game reason behind this strange delay rule? why is half of the counters white striped and the other half not? Are white stripe units elite formations with an immunity against final death serum? All I find all these delay box fuss is a very unclear and abstract design concept which I would expect rather in an euro game but not in a wargame.

thanx for clarification.
 
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Enrico Russo
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Pomigliano D'Arco - Napoli
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"Striped" units get back into game after some time (delay).
"Normal" units get back into the pool IMMEDIATELY.

What's the purpose of killing units in a wargame ??
You can answer easily.
:-)
 
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Jeff Grossman
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Grand Junction
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Delay is a fairly elegant design element that addresses both ground and support units.

Delay for ground units delays your ability to reuse those units. If it were possible to immediately rebuild them, players could teleport strong units across the map by breaking them down on one front and rebuilding (combining) them on another, albeit one turn later. Their component steps still need to be rebuilt, which is something that you may have missed.

Delay for support units is in some ways a combat resolution system for support (air and naval) units. When support units are removed (through contesting or return to base), they are delayed a number of turns before they can be reused. This prevents the player with the most support units from continuously dominating the seas or skies.
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Wendell
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Yellow Springs
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Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
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Hey, get your stinking cursor off my face! I got nukes, you know.
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enpeze wrote:

If I cannot finally kill them, why should I attack such units at all? why not only concentrating my attacks on non-white stripe targets? And what is the in-game reason behind this strange delay rule?


Because it keeps them OFF THE MAP for a certain time. And you smack enough of those white-striped units (especially the HQs), your opponent will have a hard time putting together a good force, what with the stacking rules.
 
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D Clevenger
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I agree it's abstract but it works really well especially in naval battles. Naval battles almost always result in units out of the game, in the delay box, for a long number of turns (up to 12!).
 
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Ben Vincent
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No, you never really kill anything permanently. There are units that are removed from the game, but that usually happens when a country is conquered.

Reinforcements (almost) always enter the board as single step units. This is your smallest building block. Most of these when killed go straight back to the force pool and can be rebuilt in the future (there are some single step units with delay stripes).

You can combine single step units into multistep units that are better - more efficient concentration of power. For example, three single step German infantry (either 1-2-3 or 0-2-2) can be combined into a 3 step 6-6-3 unit. Much better on offense. Defense factors are the same, but since stacking limits are usually 3 units or 6 steps, it means you can get 12 factors in one hex instead of 6. The multistep unit does have drawbacks - it is considerably slower (especially when you consider road/rail movement) and covers a smaller frontage than three smaller units.

When that multistep unit with a delay stripe is eliminated it goes to the delay box. Depending on the delay die roll and modifiers it could be 1-10 turns before it reenters the force pool and can be rebuilt. That's huge. It represents the time necessary to rebuild a command structure and all the supporting units that go along with a larger formation (artillery, supply trucks, etc...) If you have a bunch of multistep units languishing on the turn track you've lost a lot of combat power. Sure, they'll come back to the force pool eventually, but you may not have the building blocks left to reform them when they do.

The German armor units are a good example. They're 8 factors of offense at full strength, fast, and enable blitz attacks. You only have 2 of them early, and 2 more for Barbarossa. Losing one of those for a summer campaign season is a big blow.

There are a lot of counters in this game, but the unit density is actually pretty low because you don't keep adding things to the board but rather upgrade and swap out pieces.
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Martin Gallo
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Another way to think about it is that the counters represent people and equipment and weapons. You can kill the people but we always make more, it just takes time. Same thing with equipment and weapons.
 
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Frank Müller
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So a white stripe ground combat unit does not enter the game directly after delay in full strength but only the force pool and can be reassembled again later with one-steps? Ok. this changes all and is a much better and logical system now.

Many thanks for all those interesting replies and explanations.
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Jeff Grossman
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Exactly right, Frank.

Glad to help. Just let us know if you find anything else that puzzles you.
 
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Jeremy Fridy
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Yeah, this is the dodge so the game doesn't need to have complex production costs and charts. When a unit is used or destroyed, it's in the box for 1d6 turns, with modifiers, and the modifiers are where the Germans have the advantage for a while, so they can use their air a lot more, but later the Allied war machine gets going and the Germans start having units stuck in the box for 6 months or more.
 
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Uwe A. Redjac
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Beijing
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Destruction of steps
enpeze wrote:
Does that mean that you really never can eliminate certain ground armies (those with white stripes) but only give them a nice out time untill they enter the game some turns later again without any additional construction cost for the owner?


You destroy steps in this game, not ground units.

The ground units are then going back into the force pool. Some directly (those without stripes) but some need to take a detour thru the Delay Box. It is usually the weaker, less useful units that go back directly and the better ones that need time to become available again (see examples given above).

In any case though: You will need new steps (as given by cards and the like) to rebuild anything from the force pool one way or another. So: No, it is not just a "time out" for ground units with Delay Stripes. The time out is only in addition and on top of the real and serious loss of steps involved before they leave the map.

Now: Support units are different. Those really only suffer a time out when "used". But as you will figure out fast: This time out is really going to hurt you. Like: Badly.


P.S.: What is nice though with ground units and the Delay Box - sometimes it is quicker to dissolve (break down) a multi stepper unit, have it go thru the force pool and then rebuilt it on another front than to have that unit move all the way across the map.

You can imagine this like the general staff and some core equipment being sent ahead and to reassemble then with forces already on that front. That's a very elegant way making things like "strategic rail movement" or the likes unnecessary in TK.
 
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