Reviewed by Herb Levy

(Avalon Hill, 2-5 players, ages 12 and up, 2 hours or more; $45)


Had you been a game player with an interest in war strategy games and active about 20 years ago, chances are you would have had on your game shelf at least one of the games in the Milton Bradley Gamemaster Series. These games covered such diverse topics as pirates (Broadsides & Boarding Parties), Roman conquest (Conquest of the Empire), feudal Japan (Shogun and the renamed Samurai Swords, which appeared in the Winter 1988 GA REPORT and Summer 1996 GA REPORT respectively) and the invasion of the United States (Fortress America, Spring 1987 GA REPORT). But, without question, the game in the line enjoying the most success and greatest longevity is Axis & Allies . In Axis & Allies, players command forces from the five major powers in World War II and re-fight that global conflict. Now, this venerable game, under the Avalon Hill imprint, has received a new look and design.

Axis & Allies is the brainchild of Larry Harris who designed this revision with development by Mike Selinker and contributions by Richard Baker, Stephen Baker, Rob Daviau and Mike Gray. The game comes large boxed with 366 molded plastic playing pieces, a large 20″ x 33″ mounted board, Industrial Production Certificates, Information Cards, Marshaling Cards, 12 dice, plastic chips and a 40 page rulebook.aanew

The game begins in the spring of 1942. Each player controls one (or more) of the five combatants in the game: England, the Soviet Union, Germany, Japan and the United States.

The board is a map of the world divided into areas called territories (land areas) or sea zones. Most territories have an income value ranging from 1 to 12 to indicate how many Industrial Production Certificates (IPCs) the area will produce for the power controlling it. Each player begins with a bunch of IPCs which act as the currency of the game. (The Soviet Union begins with 24, Germany 40, the UK and Japan with 30 each and the United States with 42. These totals will change and are tracked on the National Production Chart.) At the start, the Allies control six cities: Washington, London, Leningrad, Moscow, Calcutta and Los Angeles. The Axis powers control Berlin, Paris, Rome, Shanghai, Manila and Tokyo. Depending on how long you wish to play (or whether you’re aiming for a minor, major or total victory), the side controlling 8 or 10 or 12 cities wins the game. Each power begins with some forces in controlled areas (as shown on their reference charts).

Axis & Allies is played in a series of rounds with each country taking a turn in the following order: Soviet Union, Germany, United Kingdom, Japan, United States. Seven phases complete a turn.

1. Develop Weapons – In this phase, players may spend IPCs (at the rate of 5 IPCs for one die) and roll the dice to try to develop a superior type of weapon, ranging from jet fighters to heavy bombers.

2. Purchase Units – Now players may use IPCs to buy units for use in a future turn. In addition to land units (at a cost of 3 IPCs), air units (fighters at 10 IPCs and bombers at 15 IPCs), and sea units (ranging from transports for 8 IPCs up to battleships at a costly 24 IPCs), players may also buy industrial complexes (15 IPCs) which serve as gateways for new units to enter the fray.aanewboard

3. Combat Move – Units already in place may move into territories and sea zones controlled or occupied by enemy forces.

4. Combat – Resolved by rolling dice. Attacking and defending units are considered to be rolling simultaneously (although some units can “open fire” and destroy the enemy before they can fire back). Most units are destroyed with one hit. Combat continues until either all units of a side are destroyed or the attacker retreats. If the attacker wins and still has at least one surviving unit, the territory comes under the attacker’s control. If all units are destroyed, there is no winner and control of the area remains as it was.

5. Noncombat Move – All units that did not move during the combat move phase or were not involved in combat may move, generally into friendly territory.

6. Mobilize New Units – Units purchased during phase 2 may now move onto the board to territories containing industrial complexes under your control. (The number of units allowed in an area is equal to the income value of the territory.)

7. Collect Income – The National Production Chart is used here and you collect that number of IPCs from the bank. If your capital city comes under enemy control, you collect NO income!

Should any power control the number of cities necessary for victory after all have completed the seven phases, ending a round, the game is over and that power (or side) is victorious!

Changes abound in this new edition of the game, some major, some minor. The board looks different with new sea zone configurations and some new territories. The Soviet Union and Germany are configured differently too. In the new Axis & Allies, the winning conditions, which varied depending on which side you were on, are now the same for BOTH. To improve the “ambiance”, pieces have been designed to more closely resemble the actual military units e.g. German tanks now look like Panther tanks and American tanks like Shermans, UK fighter planes look like Spitfires and American fighters look like P-38 Lightnings. Land and sea combat, once separate actions, are combined into one phase while artillery and destroyer forces, absent from the original, are now included, all positive improvements. The optional rules provided can change the game dynamics by giving certain advantages to each of the powers. (Using them is a matter of personal taste.) A nice touch is the timeline appearing on the edge of the rulebook which gives you a feeling for the flow of the conflict. There is still a heavy luck factor due to the presence of all those dice rolls but that is the same as in the original. And, of course, set up of all these pieces can be time consuming.

Axis & Allies is, and remains, a classic in the light wargaming genre. The new edition gives new pieces, a new look and some new decisions to a keep players involved and interested. – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Herb Levy


cialis bardolph clomid online free shipping group work essay accutane price walgreens go site source url enter source enter law school essay writing service illegal immigration paper off-label uses of levitra can an 18 year old get viagra online accounting resume expository essay konular discovery assessments sat practice essay jimmy carter write an expository essay viagra how long to kick in please help me write my essay click buy dental bridge online business thesis titles examples if i die tonight i dont have to write my paper prednisone effect on teeth Have feedback? We’d love to hear from you.

Fall 2004 GA Report Articles


Reviewed by Herb Levy (Avalon Hill, 2-5 players, ages 12 and up, 2 hours or more; $45) Had you been a game player with an interest in war strategy games and active about 20 years ago, chances are you would have had on your game shelf at least one of the games in the Milton Bradley Gamemaster Series. These games covered such diverse topics as ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Avalon Hill, 2-3 players, ages 12 and up, about two hours; $49.95) On June 6, 2004, the 60th anniversary of the D-Day invasion of Europe was celebrated. Timed to that celebration was the release of Axis & Allies: D-Day, another member of the Axis & Allies family (which includes Axis & Allies: Europe [Summer 2000 GA REPORT] and Axis & Allies: ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Face 2 Face Games; 1-4 players, ages 8 and up, 30 minutes; $24.95) A Sid Sackson game is always something special. But when a NEW Sid Sackson game hits the shelves, then there really is something to talk about. That is precisely the case with BuyWord, the new Sid Sackson word game produced by Face 2 Face Games. BuyWord comes in ...
Read More
Guilty Pleasures Let's face it. Sometimes, we enjoy things we shouldn't. At least, we THINK we shouldn't. And maybe that "forbidden" aspect is what makes the thing so much fun. You know what I mean: swiping the last piece of chocolate cake, watching Gilligan Island reruns, calling in sick to work when you're really going to the ball game. We've all been guilty of one ...
Read More
[In kicking off our 19th year, we're pleased to welcome a new voice to our pages but no stranger to the gaming scene: Ben Baldanza. Ben has been playing and collecting games since playing card games with his family as a child. Ben plays regularly with gamers in the Washington, DC area, and also teaches introductory board game classes through local adult education programs in ...
Read More
(In this issue, Ben Baldanza eyes Election USA, an English take on the US Presidential election. In our series of Game Classics, we've highlighted some great games that have brought the race for president to the gaming table. As the 2004 election approaches, it seems appropriate to "flashback" to TWO election games from that series: The Game of Politics and Mr. President. This is how ...
Read More
(Sometimes it seems as if virtually every game company has taken a crack at reproducing the United States presidential election for our gaming pleasure. Some attempts were more successful than others. One of the most successful was done by Parker Brothers. The result? Another classic game: The Game of Politics. In our Summer 2000 entry in our Game Classics series, we took a look at ...
Read More
AMERICANOPOLY: A VIEW OF AMERICA THROUGH ITS GAMES by Bruce Whitehill (Swiss Museum of Games, 132 pages in English, French and German, 8.25" square, over 110 color photos, $24) Reviewed by Herb Levy Don't let the name fool you. Although no book on American games would be complete without some mention of it, this is NOT a book on Monopoly. It is something much more ...
Read More
Reviewed by Frank Branham (Hasbro, 2 or more players, ages 8 and up, playing time varies with scenario; $39.99) I miss plastic. After a torrid affair with German games and all of their prettily painted wooden bits, I have sensed a curious longing for massively overproduced Marvin Glass games in glistening plastic. Somehow the bright colors and that funky petrochemical smell bring back my childhood ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Pro Ludo, 2-5 players, ages 8 and up, 60-90 minutes; $49.95) Richard Breese seems obsessed with finding the key to unlocking great gameplay. As evidence of this, just look at the string of games he has designed and published under his own, privately printed label: Keywood, Keytown, Keydom (re-issued as Aladdin's Dragons and Morgenland), and Keythedral. Now, following in the footsteps ...
Read More
Reviewed by Larry Levy (2F-Spiele/Rio Grande, 2-6 players, ages 12 and up, 90-120 minutes; $44.95) Everybody knows the story of the ugly duckling that grows up to be a swan. But how many times have you wished it could be true of a game? The game may play well, but is hard on the eyes and offends the aesthetic sensibilities. Sadly, games don’t grow up the ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Face 2 Face Games; 3-7 players, ages 10 and up, 30 minutes (or more); $16.95) In the long list of games designed by the legendary Sid Sackson, games of deduction hold an honored place. Sid designed Ellery Queen: Case of the Elusive Assassin for Ideal back in 1967. Sid then streamlined the play of that game to come up with Sleuth ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Parker Brothers, 2-4 players, ages 6 and up, about 30 minutes; $24.95) Parker Brothers has been quite adept at taking an evergreen and branching out. Take Monopoly, for example. Not satisfied with seeming to occupy a spot in everyone's home, that perennial has sprouted a ton of offspring including Rich Uncle (a vintage gem dating back to 1946 - and featured ...
Read More
Reviewed by Herb Levy (Parker Brothers, 3-4 adult players, about 60 minutes, $24.99) If we're talking about guilty pleasures, reality television should enter into the conversation. Watching people embarrass and humiliate themselves for money and prizes is something that people really shouldn't enjoy. Yet, judging from the TV ratings, it seems we all do. Oscar Wilde said "Nothing exceeds like excess" and reality TV proves ...
Read More
Reviewed by Greg J. Schloesser (The Ragnar Brothers, 3-5 players, ages 12 and up, 2-2.5 hours; about $50) A new game from the Ragnar Brothers, creators of such games as History of the World (featured in the Winter 1994 GA REPORT and Fall 2001 GA REPORT) and Kings & Castles … and the game carries a Viking theme. The result? A must-buy. After just one ...
Read More
Reviewed by Mark Delano (Fantasy Flight Games, 2-4 players, ages 10 and up, 20 + minutes; $29.95) When I first heard about Wings of War - Famous Aces, I was skeptical. It was described to me as a card based game of World War I dogfighting. Part of my skepticism arose because I thought that I had my two games of aerial combat, and the ...
Read More

If you enjoy games, then Gamers Alliance is right for you!