1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

7player variant with standard Diplomacy rules, devised and GMd by VaeVictus. Winner: Ottoman Empire (Pharaoh of nerds)
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1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby VaeVictis » 28 Jun 2013, 18:35

Back in February I posted my first variant based on the War of the Austrian Succession which was unbalanced, unrealistically complicated, and generally a disgrace. Here is what I believe to be a much simplified and tailored edition.

The game is set just after the first year of the First Silesian War that saw Prussia conquering Silesia and igniting the War of the Austrian Succession.

There are 43 SC's, 24 controlled by the major powers, 19 neutral, and 22 needed to win.

Special Rules:
-Gibraltar is passable and considered a coastal space, movement by both fleets and armies is possible. Gibraltar is not an SC, but contains a British fleet to begin with supplied from Liverpool (similar to 1900). Gibraltar divides the coastline of Andalusia, but does not break up the coast of Morocco. Gibraltar is considered a sea space for convoys (just like 1900).

-Crimea becomes a Russian home center if captured and held to the fall build by a Russian player. After which time Russian units may be placed in the Crimea as if it were a Russian center from the start of the game.


Initial Setup
Great Britain: F Gibraltar, F London, F Edinburgh, A Hanover
France: A Paris, A Strasbourg, F Marseilles, F La Rochelle
Spain: A Madrid, F Naples, F Valencia
Austria: A Vienna, A Budapest, A Brussels, F Agram
Prussia: A Berlin, A Breslau, A Konigsberg
Russia: F St. Petersburg, A Moscow, A Kiev
Ottoman Empire: F Cairo, A Constantinople, A Angora
Last edited by VaeVictis on 04 Sep 2013, 20:12, edited 38 times in total.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby Stanislaw » 28 Jun 2013, 19:16

Looks pretty good but I think there need to be a few map changes.

Algiers is way too big. It shouldn't border the eastern and western med, and I think it gives the Turks a fleet too far west. I'd create a new space, either Tunisia or Libya to break up Algiers and make the Turkish SC in Tun/Lib or in Egypt, in which case you would split the levant.

Also I think England doesn't have enough non SC spaces. The way you have it set up makes it much less defensible with the channel and Irish bordering 2 SCs. I'd put Wales back in and make Liv the 3rd home SC instead of Bristol.

I'd put Armenia back in. The way it is now Russia could play Kie-Cri and Mos-Don putting two armies on Angora and still getting Crimea. That seems too hard on Turkey.

I'm not sure about Ukr stretching all the way to Breslau. Seems like to gives Russia too much power to strike right at Prussia and Austria. I might divide that space up into Galicia and Ukraine or extend Lithuania further south so Kiev doesn't border Ukr.

Also I'd put Finland back in.

Why does England start with an army in Edi? I think a fleet would be better as England had a small army at the time.

When/if this becomes a forum game I'd love to take part.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby Pharaoh of nerds » 30 Jun 2013, 21:48

This looks awesome! I'd love to play at some point.

Stanislaw wrote:Algiers is way too big. It shouldn't border the eastern and western med, and I think it gives the Turks a fleet too far west. I'd create a new space, either Tunisia or Libya to break up Algiers and make the Turkish SC in Tun/Lib or in Egypt, in which case you would split the levant.

I disagree. Maybe extend Levant so it borders the Central Med and Algiers doesn't border the Eastern Med, but no more than that.

Stanislaw wrote:Also I think England doesn't have enough non SC spaces. The way you have it set up makes it much less defensible with the channel and Irish bordering 2 SCs. I'd put Wales back in and make Liv the 3rd home SC instead of Bristol.

Agreed. Definitely do this.

Stanislaw wrote:I'd put Armenia back in. The way it is now Russia could play Kie-Cri and Mos-Don putting two armies on Angora and still getting Crimea. That seems too hard on Turkey.

I agree, but then Russia can go unopposed to Crimea 1st turn, so you should also make Kiev not border Crimea. Perhaps extend Don west?

Stanislaw wrote:I'm not sure about Ukr stretching all the way to Breslau. Seems like to gives Russia too much power to strike right at Prussia and Austria. I might divide that space up into Galicia and Ukraine or extend Lithuania further south so Kiev doesn't border Ukr.

I like Ukraine the way it is. If you really want to change it, extending Lithuania further south is probably the best way.

Stanislaw wrote:Also I'd put Finland back in.

Why does England start with an army in Edi? I think a fleet would be better as England had a small army at the time.

Agreed and agreed.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby Pharaoh of nerds » 30 Jun 2013, 22:01

I think you should make Naples and Vienna fleets, and divide up the Papacy so Milan doesn't border the SC. That'll create a very interesting Channel-like dynamic in the Adriatic, with the added bonus of potentially putting Bavaria up for grabs, which would weaken Austria a bit but make that whole section of the board more interesting the first year.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby VaeVictis » 02 Jul 2013, 13:29

First off, I apologize for the long wait time on a response. I was away from a computer over the weekend.

Algiers: I agree with Pharaoh on this one since it makes for an interesting dynamic between Spain, France and the Ottoman Empire. Also, it prevents the automatic seizure of Morocco by the British fleet in Gibraltar.

Britain: I agree with both of you, the original configuration of Classic makes the most sense. It doesn't always pay to try and be original!

Armenia: Also logical and put back in place.

Ukraine: I'm keeping Ukraine and extending Don Voisko to cover Crimea from Kiev. That way Ukraine makes for an easier triangle between Russia, Prussia, and Austria, otherwise Austria would be two spaces away from a Russian center and less apt to attack or be attacked leaving the only logical target for Russia to be Prussia. I extended Don Voisko and kept Ukraine as is to prevent the following scenario should Lithuania be extended south. S 1741: Kiev-Don, Moscow-Lithuania. F 1741: Don-Crimea; Lithuania S Don-Crimea. In this case, Russia can secure Crimea every time unless Turkey is willing to surrender Wallachia to move into Moldavia just to block Russia from taking Crimea.

Finland: Absolutely. The reason it was that way initially was an obvious brain dysfunction on my part since I forgot to put Skagerrack on map in the first place. Due to this mistake my train of thought lead me to the necessary conclusion that Britain would be too strong against Russia since it would be possible for Britain to take all three Scandinavian countries in year one. With Skagerrack in place, this is moot. Goofy mistake, but Finland is back.

Edinburgh: This is also related to the Finland mistake. I thought that an army would eliminate Britain’s chance of taking all three Scandinavian countries, but with Skagerrack back, this is entirely redundant. Edinburgh is a fleet again.

Vienna and Naples: I’ll consider this, but I’m already nervous that Austria is too weak with her four centers strewn across the board. While this gives Austria a distinct flexibility for first options regarding centers, it also leaves her weakened without a consolidated power base. I changed the Milan-Papal border regardless so that Spain can pick up the Papal States with relative ease. In addition, I have made Naples a fleet. I will give your suggestion some thought since it would add spice to that region. Another option would be to make Milan a non-SC Austrian space and make Croatia an Austrian SC. This would centralize Austrian power and make the Channel dynamic of the Adriatic less hazardous for Austria. What does everyone think?

Bay of Biscay: What is everyone’s opinion on making BoB extend south to Portugal, covering Madrid from the Atlantic? I think this may serve to make a British move to Atlantic less hostile, making an Anglo-Spanish alliance more viable.

Special Rules: Should I add a dynamic about the Holy Roman Empire or maybe even a slice of the New World for Spain, France, and Great Britain to fight over? What about minor, player controlled powers like Bavaria, Saxony, Portugal, Netherlands, etc.?
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby VaeVictis » 07 Jul 2013, 13:51

After reviewing the board again, I am concerned that a British takeover of Scandinavia is too easy. First year Britain can take both Norway and Denmark, and potentially bounce Russia in Sweden (should the British player choose to be so aggressive). Spring 1742, Britain can take Sweden with an automatic 2-1. This scenario almost never occurs in reg Dip because Germany is usually the one to capture Denmark, not Britain. Though, a German-Russian bounce is common enough, Germany is not guaranteed to capture Sweden in Spring 1902. Whereas Britain would be assured of caprturing Sweden second year in this variant. That is why I think that Sweden and Finland should possibly be joined again so Russia can capture it first turn and ensure that it can be held via a build in St. Petersburg.

Thoughts?
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby Pharaoh of nerds » 07 Jul 2013, 15:11

VaeVictus wrote:After reviewing the board again, I am concerned that a British takeover of Scandinavia is too easy. First year Britain can take both Norway and Denmark, and potentially bounce Russia in Sweden (should the British player choose to be so aggressive). Spring 1742, Britain can take Sweden with an automatic 2-1. This scenario almost never occurs in reg Dip because Germany is usually the one to capture Denmark, not Britain. Though, a German-Russian bounce is common enough, Germany is not guaranteed to capture Sweden in Spring 1902. Whereas Britain would be assured of caprturing Sweden second year in this variant. That is why I think that Sweden and Finland should possibly be joined again so Russia can capture it first turn and ensure that it can be held via a build in St. Petersburg.

Thoughts?

I agree that this gives Britain too much influence in Skandinavia, but I don't think just removing Finland is the best way to fix it. I think if you remove Finland, you should split mainland part of Denmark (Jutland) from the islands as it's own non-SC territory, so Russia can bounce England in Copenhagen. Alternatively you could carve a new non-SC out of Sweden so Sweden doesn't border Denmark or the Skagerrak. Or you could make Berlin border Denmark, or fold Brandenburg into Berlin and make Berlin and Hanover both fleets.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby VaeVictis » 07 Jul 2013, 16:10

I have made three changes that I hope will change the dynamics slightly, especially between Britain-Russia, Britain-Spain, and Austria-Spain. I have added Scania in southern Sweden to assure Russia of the build and prevent Britain from being able to secure it automatically in the spring of the second in-game year. I have extended Bay of Biscay south to border Portugal. In so doing I hope to ease initial tensions between Spain and Britain, making a Gibraltar-Atlantic move by Britain less threatening. I have also made Croatia an SC as Agram and made Milan a non-SC labeled Lombardy. Agram is a fleet. Hopefully this will add the Channel-like situation that Pharaoh alluded to earlier, making a potential stab between Spain and Austria easier and more likely.

Thoughts?
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby VaeVictis » 08 Jul 2013, 13:14

The map has been amended to demonstrate initial setup.
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Re: 1741: War of the Austrian Succession 2.0

Postby Pharaoh of nerds » 08 Jul 2013, 21:00

VaeVictus wrote:The map has been amended to demonstrate initial setup.

The map looks fantastic. Only a test game can really tell us much more now.
However, I am still a bit concerned about Spain being too vulnerable to a foreign coalition. In particular, while extending the Bay of Biscay to border Portugal does make Spain less vulnerable to England, it makes it much more likely that France would open anti-Spanish with Nantes-BoB. That would then create a guessing game between France and Spain as to whether the Spanish army will cover Madrid or Portugal. That's bad enough, but if meanwhile England moves to the Atlantic or And, France could support him/her into Portugal and then next year England would support France into Madrid. I don't think any other power has that kind of gaping hole in their defenses, and because Spain is so spread out, s/he would still be very vulnerable on other fronts.
I highly recommend extending Navarro to border Portugal, so Madrid becomes landlocked, and then returning the Bay of Biscay to it's original border.
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