Recommend
14 
 Thumb up
 Hide
9 Posts

Axis & Allies: 1942» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Axis & Allies 1942: Second Edition (2012) rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Kaufschtick
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The second edition (2012) of the 1942 A&A is really a terrific game.

It's the revision that the original Milton Bradley version of the game has been waiting for, it's that type of game again. Good size mapboard, clean rules, nice set up, and so far, just as every bit as fun as the old venerable MB version of the game was way, way back when.

Considering you can pick this game up for about $42 USD off sites like CoolStuff and such, it's a damn good value for the price. Of course, you have to get past things like no paper money, and I think they did away with the plastic factories too. But on the plus side there, they have new chips, which at first thought, I was thinking; eh, big deal. But they are a nice change in so far as they have green chips that represent 3 now, and our first 2 games, we didn't even come close to running out of chips, or units! That was nice for a change!

The new chips are smaller in diameter too, which makes it just that much easier to see the gameboard, especially for new players. The crowding is reduced more than you would think just by adding slightly smaller chips.

As far as game balance goes, it looks in the early stages like the Axis may have a slight edge, which is just fine with me. The Allies have had a slight edge it seems for the last 30+ years, it's about time the Axis get a chance at it! Seriously though, the main thing is that the balance is close, and it is. I've only ever played one game using a bid, and it is easy enough to do if you feel one side or the other needs it. Then it's just game on! Loads of fun from that point on!

I mean, as far as things like the paper money go, and the plastic pieces for the factories, it'd be great if they could've kept them, but you have to figure they've done a great job at delivering a game with a good value for the price.

The items they cut out are the exact same things that as players, we stopped using long ago. If those things add something to the game for you, I'm not knocking it, but you have to see that it really is for the good of the game. You can add those little extras yourself on your own, without the need for the added costs to the game, to affect everyone else.

In the old days, the money went first. It was much easier to track what you had, and what you saved each buy on a piece of paper. That also did away with the need for the IPC chart as well. Next was the battle board. It's great for new players to help visualize what is going on in a battle, but nobody wants to constantly move all the battles back and forth to the battle board after very long. Plastic factories & AA guns were left out of games more often that not because of crowding issues. We played many a game, and at some point during the game, one of us would notice that we forgot to put out factories. The trade off in crowding was worth their absence. The only time we really needed them was on newly built ones; but even then, it usually caused a crowding issue. The counters are great, you can put stuff right over them if needed. They don't move around, so there is little need to try keeping track of them, they're going to be right where they were last time, everytime! Unlike the unit pieces.

The main things you need to play A&A are a good mapboard, something that is going to last, the unit pieces and chips, and dice. You want plastic unit pieces because you can take in the game board situation much easier and faster than if there were cardboard counters that are much harder to see, and tell the difference in what is what. The chips hold down on crowding, and then it all comes down to the dice and your decision making.

I have paper money from AA50 still, and plenty of the plastic factories and AA guns, and an old battle board. I figured that they would help with new players.

The battleboard is OK for a few battles until they get the hang of things, but then it gets tiresome, and we ditch it. The old AA guns are just not needed in any way shape or form now. The factories still come in handy, but the trade off in the space they take up doesn't make them any better than the counters now.

The paper money...the paper money actually made the games for new players more confusing. When making buys, if a player was having a hard time deciding what he wanted to buy, as most new players do, then the last minute changes in buys, and the back and forth shuffling of the paper money, got way too cumbersome. OK, here's my buy...wait, can I change it? We play friendly games, and you can change your buys up to the point that you start rolling for battles. Even veteran players will go through a lot of different set ups for buys, and change them. Exchanging the paper money can get out of hand real fast that way too, to the point that you might not be able to tell if the money on hand is correct or not.

We used to make up a little sheet of paper with 2 lines across the sheet for each nation. 1 line kept track of the current money, the other what you saved from your buy, so you could add it in at the end of your turn. The seperate IPC chart always got bumped, and everyone was screwed at that point.

By putting the IPC chart on the gameboard, it doesn't get bumped. Everyone is always much more careful about not bumping the gameboard, as not only does that result in the loss of cool points, but it screws the game as well. We like it the way it is now. We place chips under the nationality marker to keep track of unspent, or saved IPCs from your last buy, so they get added in at the end of the turn. Another good thing is, you can easily look to see where everyone else is at, IPC wise. For new players, it is important for them to begin seeing the relationship of not only their own IPCs, and how they are going to use them, but to see the levels of their adversaries as well. "Wow, here is how much I have, but look at how much this player has. I can't let that go on unchecked."

With paper money, new players seem to tend to focus more on their own IPC level, and keeping track of their own "money", just like you pay real close attention to your own real money. Plus, you can't look over at an opposing players pile of paper money, and tell what he has. You have to look at the IPC track for that, and then that begs the question, well then why have the paper money to start with? It's kind of redundant.

So right now, Larry and the guys (Kevin Chapman, aka Krieghund) making the calls on stuff like this, have been able to keep intact the key elements of gameplay for A&A, while very judiciously removing the costs of elements of the game that do not have a large impact on gameplay.

For their efforts, you are able to purchase a high quality game that is fun to play, challenging to master, and a great social type game too, for a price as low as $42 USD. That really is a great value. And by social type game, I mean the kind of game that not only can you add in up to 5 players, but a game that really brings an important part of history to light. Not only do you ponder the what ifs as you play the game, but you start to want to know what really happened. It's that spark of curiosity that fuels knowledge, especially with the internet these days. It doesn't take much to start learning now days, the information is out there, and easily accessed.

That's what makes a game like Axis & Allies 1942 such a special game, especially for the younger generation. It helps keep the memories alive for a lot of very special people, which of course, are those being the ones that lived it.
11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrzej Sieradzki
Poland
Opole
flag msg tools
badge
We don't stop playing when we get old, but we get old when we stop playing.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Do you really get green chips in your game box? I got only grey and red...
The green are included in the 1941 version and are made of cardboard.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jan Ozimek
Denmark
Aalborg
flag msg tools
badge
Must resist M:tG. Boardgames are my methadone :)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Thanks for typing up a review, but I'm really missing some key elements here.

What about the game play? Flow of the game? Impact of changes to the map and units? How does it compare to the benchmark AA50?
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrzej Sieradzki
Poland
Opole
flag msg tools
badge
We don't stop playing when we get old, but we get old when we stop playing.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For me the map has two flaws:
1. it is too small. The units can hardly be placed in particular areas.
2. boarders between areas are barely visible.
Gameplay is ok.
Some changes in rules:
- transports are defensless (0/0),
- tanks defend at 3, not 2,
- no technological development.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kaufschtick
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
ozimek wrote:
Thanks for typing up a review, but I'm really missing some key elements here.

What about the game play? Flow of the game? Impact of changes to the map and units? How does it compare to the benchmark AA50?


Wow, those are some some very good questions, and I could write a book on the answer here!

You really have so much now in previous releases of A&A to compare this new offering to. There's the original MB version, Revised, Spring 1942 (of which this is the second edition), 2 seperate and completely different pacific versions, and 2 more europe versions.

1942 second edition is first and foremost a fine tuning of the previously released 1942 game; which was an update to A&A Revised; which was supposed to be the update and replacement for the good old MB version.

Basically, it's taken 3 attempts to bring the MB version forward into a game that really and truely can be called "the new Axis & Allies", or a proper replacement for the MB version. The old MB game had a super mapboard, large enough to play the game and nice to look at. Revised had a terrible mapboard, which was colored to help facilitate set up, and...well, I don't know what else. The oceans were black...wound up feeling like a checker board or something. 1942 first edition, the map was just too small, nice looking, but another fail. Second edition has a map board that is hard mounted, about as large as the original, I'd say, and is just beautiful to look at. I believe they did artificially "warp" some areas to make game spaces a little bigger, but the game board is super.

Like I've already said, the chips are new, smaller in diameter, but they lock together in stacks better and don't come apart in moves quite so readily. Green chips = 3, and there actually are enough chips to not have players run short in long games.

Plastic factories and neutral AA guns are gone. Factories are now cardboard counters, and AA guns have evolved into a new gamepiece and are included now in the arsenals of the various nations armies.

Paper money fell victim to cost cutting, and the battleboard is now just a very narrow strip that sets up between opposing forces in a battle now, as opposed to the armies setting up ON the battleboard. It's still just as funtional, again another cost saving move.

The IPC track is now on the gameboard, it runs along the top edge in 2 rows, but takes nothing away from the gameboard. In fact, it keeps the IPC levels right there for all players to worry and fidget over..."Oh Lordy, Japan is starting to really move up in IPCs...that's not a good thing..."

There are no storage trays or boxes, but the game box is large enough to accomodate a good amount of various storage containers that would suit many a personal tastes. You could go with some small Plano, or Rubbermade; or just plain, old fashioned ziplock bags. Speaking of the box, great box art.

As far as map changes go, second edition is pretty much the same map as first edition, which was the same as revised. I've packed away my first edition map in the attic already, and I got rid of revised years ago. I'll go off memory here.

First, China is 4 spaces, and I think it was 2 in the MB version. really nothing new in this area of the gameboard. Japan can still tear through China quite easily, but there is one more territory to go through to get at Russia. It feels right for the size of the game, compared to all previous versions.

Skip to the US, it now includes the central US, so 3 spaces for the US. Infantry are going to not be able to skip from coast to coast quite so easily if heading west.

I've got a few errands to run today, I work in retail supermarkets...I'll be back later today to finish!
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrzej Sieradzki
Poland
Opole
flag msg tools
badge
We don't stop playing when we get old, but we get old when we stop playing.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I can not fight the feeling you are reviewing A&A 1941 version, not 1942, dear Kaufschtickgulp
Still, there are NO green counters in 1942 (they are in 1941). There ARE plastic generic grey factories and AA guns in 1942.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kaufschtick
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
nightbomber wrote:
I can not fight the feeling you are reviewing A&A 1941 version, not 1942, dear Kaufschtickgulp
Still, there are NO green counters in 1942 (they are in 1941). There ARE plastic generic grey factories and AA guns in 1942.


You've got first edition 1942, it has been replaced with a second edition 1942. You'll love the second edition, trust me.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrzej Sieradzki
Poland
Opole
flag msg tools
badge
We don't stop playing when we get old, but we get old when we stop playing.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I checked the box - you are right! The box covers are so similar...

So could you briefly list the main differences between those 2 editions, please?

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Burgermeister Meisterburger
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Check this thread:

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/833611/just-need-someone-to-...

nightbomber wrote:

So could you briefly list the main differences between those 2 editions, please?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.