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Subject: WWII era war games with technology trees? rss

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Brandon Minton
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I remember years ago playing Axis and Allies and being able to do research for stuff like long range bombers.

Are there any WWII era board games that have tech trees similar to the Civilization type games? I know the computer world has unit/ability upgrades (Hearts of Iron, Company of Heroes.)

Are there board games that start in 1939 and let you decide if you want to put research points in naval upgrades or new tanks as opposed to just getting the new submarines or Tiger tanks when they were actually released?

Or maybe even more in-depth: For instance, on the tank path, choosing optics vs gun size or ammo research which might yield more hits due to better sighting or better penetration depending on what path you take?
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Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
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Hitler's War.

And from this century, Triumph & Tragedy.
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Enrico Viglino
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Advanced Third Reich had significant tech choices.


No rich trees, but I'm not sure how much they would apply in such a short war,
without getting into way more detail than most would desire for a strategic game.
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Arthur Dougherty
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Supreme Commander has this as well. I assume World At War has this, too. Does World in Flames have some system for this?

edit: maybe tech trees is too strong a term for what these games have, but you can do research into advancing technology.
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Enrico Viglino
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awdougherty wrote:
Does World in Flames have some system for this?


The old core did not - but it did have a lot of year-based units
(mainly planes). Dunno if they eventually added something. Factories
in Flames maybe?
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Rodney Clowsewitz
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A World at War has a technology system but it isn't a tech tree. Each Year End a player receives Research Points (RPs). The player has a number of options into which he wants to place these RPs, for example, torpedos, rockets, air range, radar, atomic bombs. The player gives cool little codenames to each tech and writes them in his research booklet.

When the research phase comes the player allots a number of RPs to a research project then makes a a dice roll. He announces that he is rolling for "Project: Hellfire Rains Down Upon The Weak" and then with a satisfied smile records the result in his private book.

The prequel to A World at War, Gathering Storm seems to also have a lot of technology in it but I'm unsure of how it exactly works.
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Randall Shaw
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Cataclysm: A Second World War, I believe, has something along those lines as well but I'm fuzzy on the details.

Plus it will be a while before its actually produced.
 
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Martin Gallo
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Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
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Sokadr wrote:
Cataclysm: A Second World War, I believe, has something along those lines as well but I'm fuzzy on the details.

Plus it will be a while before its actually produced.

No tech tree in Cataclysm, I'm afraid. Below the scale of the game.

We expect to be on P500 in 2014, though.
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Brandon Minton
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Thanks guys! I'll check out the mentioned titles to see how technological advancement has been implemented.
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Confusion Under Fire
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I am a tactical gamer so this is out of my range but this sounds a cool idea, having a tech tree or tech system. Do they allow for a player to react to the enemies new technology too? The enemy builds AFVs with heavier armour, we need better Anti-Tank Guns, that sort of thing. I think a lot of technology was created by reacting to the enemy. The only one off the top of my head that didn't was the Zimmerit paste used by the Germans to stop magnetic mines being placed on the AFVs. The Allies, I believe, didn't have a magnetic mine for AFVs!
 
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Brandon Minton
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I think it is an interesting idea, however the implementation could be very difficult in terms of playability. That's why I was wondering if it's been done before.

To make the game quick to play, you'd probably want different counters for the units so you have quick access to the unit's stats, but that could lead to an unmanageable amount of counters.

Or if you have cards or a written sheet that had the upgrades, that could lead to the problem I have experienced playing CCGs, which is, you forget to look at the text of a given unit and don't end up using it's changed state.

---

If you could find a good way to implement it I think this would be good for a system that plays tactically or operationally but ties into a larger strategic element. For example: You play the game at the platoon/company level for "key battles" and the outcomes of those change the control of the theater-wide map. Perhaps a win in a certain key battle give you access to important factories which gives you X production points. This allows you to start producing new equipment (after some research in another game element) and then all your further "key battles" will have these new units available.

 
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Enrico Viglino
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PhotographTheVerb wrote:

To make the game quick to play, you'd probably want different counters for the units so you have quick access to the unit's stats, but that could lead to an unmanageable amount of counters.




The solutions that two mentioned designs (Hitler's War and A3R/AWAW)
provide doesn't go into that kind of detail. In Hitler's War, tech
is (perhaps) the minimal level to buy a unit of the type - and after
that it affects the price paid. A3R used a less consistent design
paradigm: nukes required many layers of successes, but mostly tech
was used to provide a DRM for combat.
 
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Steve
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I have been fiddling with my games for 50+ years. I think I have paid my dues, so to speak.

My latest thought on adding technology gradually into a WWII game [to avoid ruining the play balance] is to make the player pay for the tech* that he wants, and then make him wait for about 2 turns [in A&A, more or less in other games] to get it.

This eliminates luck in this important element of the game. Of course, I dislike games that let a player win when he takes a stupid chance and just gets incredibly lucky. [Like getting Heavy Bombers in original MB Axis & Allies.]

* "Tech" can mean technology or technique.
 
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Lee Trowbridge
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Reply a bit late, but

Confrontation and Confrontation Expansion Kit (1967)had tech trees from WWII into the 1960s. (It's a very strategic game and hence has a broad brush take on tech advancement).
 
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