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Subject: TnT v32 AAR April/14 rss

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Craig Besinque
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New Denver
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We had a real barnburner FTF game Weds night, using v32 map and rules.
The naval and sub games really came alive: Germany worked on its Fleets and Subs and caused the West no end of trouble.

We tried several new ideas:
1) some map tweaks to heighten Soviet/West tension;
2) increased HandSizes by one (8/7/6, really liked this);
3) new Factory Cost structures (less reduction for being DoWed and West cheaper than Axis).
4) Subs can Retreat a full move (2 areas) including under (through) Enemy units.

We had a Peace game through 1940 (a few Violations of Neutrality) and the West pulled even using the cheap Factories With France still in the game and the USA coming in soon (already a Satellite), the West was looking like a winner if nothing was done to stop them. The Soviets and Axis accordingly agreed to demilitarize their border (Poland being Axis) and the Soviets, having grabbed Persia in 1940, went after India in 1941. They didn't roll well enough to take it and the battle for India raged through the year. In '42 the Yanks arrived and promptly shipped south on the way to reinforce India. They arrived just in time to get hammered by the bulk of Russian military might arriving to finish off India.

Despite urgings, the Axis did nothing versus the West (France looked weak), going after Yugoslavia instead. Finally after merciless ribbing the Axis went into France, which fell easily, quickly followed by a massive air attack on London's INDustry (Axis having Bombsight technology). London, defended by a Fort4 and 6CV of AFs WITH AirDefense Radar, absolutely shattered the Luftwaffe, which Retreated without bombing as it could not survive further combat.

But the Axis had some good Fleets up its sleeves and some Subs to boot. There followed a series of anxious naval/sub/air battles for the seas around England. The Axis gained the upper hand at sea and then followed up with an Invasion, which was repelled with difficulty and some good rolling. Meanwhile the Italians easily blocked the Med, bringing West Production down by RESource constriction.

It is getting late and with the West much weakened and the Soviets now looking strongest, the Axis DoWed Russia, shifting its AF east and attempting to bomb Moscow INDustry from E Poland (Axis having Long-Range Bombers). They bombers missed and Russia immediately counterattacked on land, pushing the Germans out of air range. The Soviets continued their ground offensive (gaining Rocket Artillery at this crucial juncture), thrusting to Austria before being pushed back. A desperate German counter-attack back into Poland in mid-45 was shattered by Russian infantry.

The Russians held on for the victory with 19 net VPs (Prod 17, +3 PDs, -1 DoW) to 15 net for the Axis (would have been 18 but Axis LatinAmerica was Blockaded by West) and 13 net for the West.

We felt it was our best game ever. Naval was working, Air was working, Blockades were working, Techs were happening (bigger hand size enabled this IMO), there was lots of early Diplo fighting and of course negotiation was a big factor too. It had it all, seemingly.

Giving the West the cheapest Factories was maybe a mistake but it did force the psychology that the West would win unless somebody did something (which was the idea). Too often, Germany sits in the best position and the others have to initiate War which feels wrong.

I was much encouraged, but interested to hear what results other groups get with this scheme. We thought Subs were fine and attacking France was a must, sooner or later. We even had Carriers fighting at sea (and they both hammered and got hammered at times).

Craig
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Carsten Bohne
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Duisburg
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This AAR is definitely whetting the appetite for this game. Thanks for sharing...
 
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Sean Norman
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Nice report, really looking forward to this! I'm hoping for a Q4 release.
 
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Sam Carroll
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Sounds fantastic!
 
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Captain Nemo
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cbesinque wrote:
We had a Peace game through 1940 (a few Violations of Neutrality) and the West pulled even using the cheap Factories With France still in the game and the USA coming in soon (already a Satellite), the West was looking like a winner if nothing was done to stop them. The Soviets and Axis accordingly agreed to demilitarize their border (Poland being Axis) and the Soviets, having grabbed Persia in 1940, went after India in 1941. They didn't roll well enough to take it and the battle for India raged through the year. In '42 the Yanks arrived and promptly shipped south on the way to reinforce India. They arrived just in time to get hammered by the bulk of Russian military might arriving to finish off India.


Do you think that the USA would have sent troops into India to help the British protect a major colony? I thought a major point of difference in the West was that the USA did not want to prop up European colonial regimes.


cbesinque wrote:
Giving the West the cheapest Factories was maybe a mistake but it did force the psychology that the West would win unless somebody did something (which was the idea). Too often, Germany sits in the best position and the others have to initiate War which feels wrong.


Perhaps injecting some level of uncertainty for all would be a good move (variable VPs depending on objectives drawn or chosen) but agree that German war aims should be the key driver. However, the Soviets initiated the Winter War, occupation of the Baltic states and so forth.

cbesinque wrote:
I was much encouraged, but interested to hear what results other groups get with this scheme. We thought Subs were fine and attacking France was a must, sooner or later. We even had Carriers fighting at sea (and they both hammered and got hammered at times).


Very encouraging indeed; I am definitely watching this one with interest.
 
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Barton Campbell
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Sounds interesting but how is Lend-Lease handled?
 
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Steve C
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Did you read the game description? Part pasted below...

Triumph and Tragedy is a true 3-sided game: there is no requirement that the West and Russia be on the same side (and in fact there are valid reasons to attack each each other), and only ONE player can win the game. Table talk is allowed (and encouraged) but agreements are not enforceable. Alliances are shifting and cooperation is undependable.
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Barton Campbell
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GenChaos wrote:
Did you read the game description? Part pasted below...

Triumph and Tragedy is a true 3-sided game: there is no requirement that the West and Russia be on the same side (and in fact there are valid reasons to attack each each other), and only ONE player can win the game. Table talk is allowed (and encouraged) but agreements are not enforceable. Alliances are shifting and cooperation is undependable.


I realize this, however, I guess what I meant was assuming the West and the Soviet Union were allied how is Lend-Lease handled? From your answer I would guess that it would be in the Western player's interests (assuming that the West and the Soviet Union were both fighting the Nazi's) to only give the Soviet Union enough aid to stave off defeat (that is to keep a second front open) but not enough to allow it to advance. In other words, it would be in the West's interests to give as little as possible to the Soviet player. And then after a metaphorical 1943 the West would give nothing to the Soviets.

This is an interesting mechanic to give this game the necessary 3-player dynamic it has, but it is not WWII. Just curious, thanks for responding.

P.S. There was a curious strategy article in the General on the Rise and Decline of the Third Reich that once had a similar dynamic. If the Germans and one of the Allies colluded they could use the victory conditions to engineer a 2-player victory (I realize that there can only be one winner in Triumph & Tragedy). Part of this plan required the Nazi's to take Poland and a few other countries and then to withdraw from them allowing the Soviet Union to then occupy them. From my reading this kind of thing seemed to be Stalin's hope before Hitler attacked them, i.e. to "split the world" between the "international" socialists and the national socialists. However, one of the main planks of the Nazi's was the elimination of communism (they in part hated Jewish people because they believed that Jewish people were the originators of communism). From this point of view, to allow the Nazi's to avoid a war with the Soviet Union would be like allowing the Green Party to industrially pollute a country if it became expedient for some reason. I'm just suspicious if "true believers" operate this way.
 
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Barton Campbell
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I was thinking about the above scenarios. Since the "West" declared war against Germany because they invaded Poland, what if the Nazi's did not attack Poland on their route towards attacking the Soviet Union? What if, for example the Nazi's staged an amphibious invasion near Leningrad and fought against the Soviet Union from this bridgehead? Conceivably, the West might have stayed neutral. Of course, one could argue that another major component of the Nazi program was the re-acquisition of Alsace-Lorraine (not to mention the Danzig corridor) necessitating an eventual war between the West and Germany. I feel that a game like Triumph & Tragedy sounds like a very interesting proposal, however, I also feel that the actual interests of the various parties are not faithfully modeled in this game though it does sounds like a fun free-for-all using WWII technology.
 
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Barton Campbell
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GenChaos wrote:
Did you read the game description? Part pasted below...

Triumph and Tragedy is a true 3-sided game: there is no requirement that the West and Russia be on the same side (and in fact there are valid reasons to attack each each other), and only ONE player can win the game. Table talk is allowed (and encouraged) but agreements are not enforceable. Alliances are shifting and cooperation is undependable.


This also suggests that it is possible for the West and the Nazi's to join in a war against the Soviet Union. Somehow, I'm not convinced that the United States would have fought allied with Germany while the Nazi's were engaged in a program of genocide. Maybe I'm just squeamish.
 
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Steve C
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Well - Since the game is a free-for-all and starts in 1935-36,...

Poland would start with no West help. And only after years/game turns, Poland would get influence/control(thru diplomacy, not war) from the West or maybe the Axis or even the Reds. (But I'm sure there is a 1939 scenario with more of a West's Poland)

So Lend Lease is not possible also, only table talk help.
(I'm sure if you play the 2 player game, the Allies are the West and Soviets and will help each other in all ways possible)
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C Sandifer
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Thanks for the great AAR. How long did the game take to play?

I worry that an advertised 3-5 hour game time really means 6-8 hours - not just for TnT but for wargames generally.







 
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Brian Evans
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I've played games of T&T as short as 2 hours and some as long as 8 hours. It just depends on the players involved. Knowing the rules well obviously helps but at what time all out war breaks out is probably the biggest factor. Generally speaking, Peace years go by more quickly than War years. A lot depends on your individual group of players, but I think 4-5 hour play time is a very reasonable estimate.
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