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(Dark Ages - Angstskrik)


Post:< 13702 >
Subject:< DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG >
Topic:< dc262 >
Category:< Closed Games 
Author:Kenshi777
Posted:Dec 28, 2009 at 11:52 am
Viewed:1033 times

  [New Post]  [Reply]  [Quote]

Oof - I really don't want to go down the road of adding a continental
power...that detracts from the naval theme to the variant...that
said...interesting notes on Lap...it was meant to be a means for W/D
cooperation, not N/W- to allow Sweden to build up north, after the
Danes and Swedes had eliminated Norway. Otherwise, *all* Swedish
builds would be potentially threatening to Denmark...

The concept of a N/W alliance was that Sweden would push hard south
and west, and Norway would mostly launch west immediately at
gamestart, giving them a big advantage and dominant position at sea.
Problem is, even with Zetland added, I'm not at all sure that's enough
incentive for them to just let *all* the Danish spoils go to Sweden.
Lindholm was also added for this reason, but without a canal (or the
full cession of Danish spoils to Sweden), all the Swedish forces going
west still have to pass through Norse claims.

You'll see this occasionally in standard in a G/R alliance where the
Russian fleet St. P passes German spoils in England - but there are
much easier routes (Nwg-NAO) built in there. This is why I think the
Eider canal might be needed...***

On 12/27/09, Packrat <brn2dip(at)yahoo.com> wrote:

I wouldn't change the island much at all.
If I recall from earlier postmortems the issue around getting across the
water
was by design. I understand the issues that have been raised and I think
the
only one worth addressing is actually the Norse/Swede/Dane dynamic. That
one remains skewed against the Swede since there is VERY limited avenues
out to the sea or on land.

Ya know - I just went and looked at the map again and I guess my taking LAP
early on colored my view a bit. LAP is Swedish (at least in opening) so
they
actually do have a way out, but they remain a huge threat to Norse survival.

Ideally making the one uniquely north and one uniquely south would be cool,
but
quite inaccurate historically. The border between them runs north south and
not
east west and that is the issue at the heart of the problem.

I'm thinking along the lines of making Scandinaiva the power with four home
dots,
keeping Denmark as is and perhaps making some sort of Franco/Prussian
conglomorate
south of Denmark. Not sure if that works for you, but I think that would
balance things
more and still keep play interesting.





________________________________
From: Benjamin Hester <screwtape777(at)gmail.com>
To: Matthew Kelly <kelly058(at)verizon.net>
Cc: Nick Higgins <congressofvienna1814(at)yahoo.com>; Nathan Deily
<ndeily(at)yahoo.com>; Nigel PHILLIPS <nephilli99(at)hotmail.com>;
brn2dip(at)yahoo.com; captain_sicarius(at)hotmail.com; dc262(at)diplomaticcorp.com;
gregory nomads <gbimmerle(at)gmail.com>; Jason K archer <githraine(at)yahoo.com>;
Mike Sims - new email <mike(at)fuzzylogicllc.net>; mike(at)sims-family.net
Sent: Sat, December 26, 2009 11:44:42 PM
Subject: Re: DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG

After action report. Haven't heard an EOG called an AAR before, but
it seems appropriate Smile You military maybe Matt?

Interesting that both the Anglo-Saxons and the Gaels seem concerned
about the Bretons. I thought that this version of the variant
achieved the intended dynamic of giving the Bretons good options to
move against the Gaels or Anglo-Saxons, but the players seem not to
agree (Anglo-Saxon and Breton conflict appeared forced to them?) This
surprised me.

Scott - as the Breton player in the last Dark Ages game, you got along
reasonably well with the Anglo-Saxons (for most of the game) if I
recall, and nearly soloed. But my question is, was it exceedingly
difficult to work with the A-S position? This is, granted, one of the
most tense positions on the map, but certainly no worse than A/I in
Standard, and that is a *very* common alliance. And for the same
reasons that the Bretons and Anglo-Saxons should consider allying I
think - gains made at each others' expense leave them vulnerable to
attacks from outside (Gaels/Danes). So it is in Standard - when A/I
fight, R/T are often the ones that benefit most.

As for the Scots, that route really isn't meant to be a good choice,
as the Scots have enough problems (holding a position on the eastern
coast of the British Isles makes them the first ones, like the
Anglo-Saxons, that have to worry about the Viking invasions). Add the
Gaels in as potential (and frequent) rivals. If the Bretons also have
a strong impulse to head north, the Scots are screwed. So it was
intended that the Scots and Bretons would have the A/G dynamic - not
much contact at first, but definitely friendly towards one another -
though the Mercia/Deira border can cause conflict...

All this said, I am much less critical of Matt's play than he is
himself - the Breton position is one of the most diplomatically
demanding on the map. I also cannot understand why the Scandinavian
powers were not in constant contact with the Bretons, especially the
Danes. Oh well - perhaps the Anglo-Saxon/Breton conflict was taken as
a given in this game, and there was no need to stir the pot.

Thanks to all the players for the very insightful EOGs - I had hoped
that Dark Ages was done at the drawing board, but I think a few final
tweaks might be in order.

B.

On 12/20/09, Matthew Kelly <kelly058(at)verizon.net> wrote:
[quote:c5c1d4000b]Evening All,
First time with this variant and my play showed it. Gaels, and Scots
both
offered alliance against the other. I agreed to both. Which side I would
ultimately support would be determined by who got the upper hand over the
other. My relations with the Anglo-Saxons on the other hand started badly
and continued in that way for the entire game. Here is where my
inexperience with this variant probably got me into trouble. The Bretons
have only two centers that they can reasonably be expected to secure early
in the game--Cornwall and Mercia. Being surrounded I viewed both as
imperative to my survival. Nick didn't give me the warm and fuzzies about
me securing either center, especially Cornwall. My view of the map
indicated
that the Anglo-Saxons have a lot more opportunities for centers especially
on the continent and I was perplexed by Nick's intransigence on the
issue.
It looks like Nick and I came to the same conclusions for the same
reasons--both thinking the other was out to get him. And it looks like we
were both wrong about the other's intentions.
As the game opened as expected the Gaels and Scotts went at it. It also
became clear that the Anglo-Saxons were serious about Cornwall. My quick
move north to secure Strat. was successful. If the Gaels had been in
position to get an army across I would have supported them. To have
attacked the Scots without significant support would have been fruitless
and
I held my position and continued to profess my friendship with the Scots.
And the Scots soon had the upper hand against the Gaels and my position
in
the north was totally dependent on the Scots' good graces which I knew
would
not last forever because the remainder of my forces were engaged with the
Anglo-Saxons.
Second error on my part was not keeping communications open with Nick. We
went at it and continued until I was gone. As noted in his after action
report Nick was working successfully to get the Scots and Gaels to come
after me. Even with (6) centers at one point I was forced to defend those
centers and didn't have the strength to go north or south without giving
up
centers in my rear. Diplomacy was my only way out and I didn't do it.
The Scots stood by me for probably longer than they needed to and I
appreciate that. The end came with the Gaels coming after me and I was
left with a choice. Fight a protracted defensive game with the inevitable
outcome or continue to keep the Anglo-Saxons pinned down for as long as
possible to give the Danes and opportunity to expand and then maybe I'd
be
offered some type of deal. I've never been much of a defensive player.
My unfamiliarity with the variant resulted in a lack of an overall
strategy
on my part. I decided to "wing it" and see which way the wind blew and
take
advantage of any opportunities. I prefer to establish strong alliances
early but abandoned this approach for the reason noted above. BIG
MISTAKE.
Well that is about it. I would note that during the came I never received
any communications from the continent. Thought that was a bit strange.
-Matt Kelly-
Bretons




________________________________
From: Nick Higgins <congressofvienna1814(at)yahoo.com>
To: Benjamin Hester <screwtape777(at)gmail.com>; Nathan Deily
<ndeily(at)yahoo.com>
Cc: Nigel PHILLIPS <nephilli99(at)hotmail.com>; brn2dip(at)yahoo.com;
captain_sicarius(at)hotmail.com; dc262(at)diplomaticcorp.com; gregory nomads
<gbimmerle(at)gmail.com>; Jason K archer <githraine(at)yahoo.com>;
kelly058(at)verizon.net; Mike Sims - new email <mike(at)fuzzylogicllc.net>;
mike(at)sims-family.net
Sent: Sun, December 20, 2009 2:28:06 AM
Subject: Re: DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG

Thanks to B for running the game, and to my allies Nigel and Nathan for
coming together at the end to set up the defense line. Congrats to
Gregory
for a well-played game. First I will go over a recap of the game from my
perspective, and then my view on the variant.

[quote:c5c1d4000b][quote:c5c1d4000b][quote:c5c1d4000b]Game Recap >>>

[/quote:c5c1d4000b][/quote:c5c1d4000b]
As for this game, I initially was most concerned about Denmark, due to
their
past success in the variant, and my initial impression that they were
"aimed" in my direction instead of Sweden's. I contacted the Swedes for
an
attack, and got a favorable response.

However, I needed peace with the Bretons to pursue this plan. Matt
negotiated pretty hard, insisting on getting both Mercia and Cornwall. He
argued that I should be satisfied with Brittany, and he deserves Cornwall.
This potentially could be reasonable, but something about Matt's tone left
me worried where I didn't feel comfortable about having a long-term
alliance. Once my units were pushed east against the Danes, I would be
powerless to do anything about the Breton threats in Cornwall and Mercia.
I
was very concerned about a Breton opening into Mercia in spring, followed
by
a move into Middle Anglia in fall with their other army trailing into
Mercia. This would be a very low-risk opening by Breton, while I would be
entirely defenseless against it if I pushed east.

If I had felt confident moving against the Danes, I would have done a bold
move like convoying an army to the continent or trying to sneak into NFC
in
fall. Instead, I opened by moving my army defensively to Middle Anglia,
and
moved my fleets to take Austrasia and Brittany. I had tried to woo the
Gaels into moving to Cardigan Bay against Breton, but much to my dismay
the
Gaels and Scots moved very aggressively against each other. I got a
little
lucky when the Bretons did not open to Mercia, and was then able to bounce
him there in fall.

At this point, I was locked into war with Breton, as confirmed by his two
army builds. The Gaels and Scots were locked in war as well. I put all
of
my diplomatic efforts into making peace between the Gaels and Scots, and
gaining Nathan as an ally to attack the Bretons. Nathan seemed open to
the
possibility, but Nigel was not. This left the four of us in two separate
evenly matched wars where nobody made progress.

In the east, the Danes and Norse made short work of the Swedes, and
eventually they both turned west. Nigel and I would face the brunt of
this
attack, so we started cooperating together against the Bretons and Gaels.
Nigel and I had a slight edge in this war that we could have eventually
pressed to total victory, but we were not able to accomplish this before
the
Danes/Norse sent fleets west.

Death looked imminent for us (Scots and Anglos), but we were saved by the
Danish stab of the Norse. I had not held out any real hope that either
would stab the other, and was pleasantly surprised by this. I immediately
sued for peace with Greg, and he acquiesced, promising to pull back from
Neustria to Austrasia. The Gaels had come out the worst in the west, and
were down to 3 SCs. I had emerged badly when the Danes stabbed me, and
the
Bretons had taken advantage to reach 6 SCs while I was down to 4. Tempted
by the carrot of the return of his Irish SC that Nigel had taken, Nathan
was
amenable to joining the Scotch/Anglo alliance and helping us carve up the
powerful 6-SC Bretons.

The next phase of the game saw the Norse steadily devoured by the Danes,
while the Bretons were killed in the west. One could ask why I never
moved
against the Danes, but I had little choice. All of my units were consumed
in the protracted war against Breton, in particular containing a rogue
unit
behind my back lines. Nigel couldn't do much to help the Norse, and so
his
fleets just kinda hung out around Scotland while the Danish armies made
their way across Scandinavia.

The final phase saw the 3 of us left in the west, and the Danes in the
east. I was most concerned about a Gaelic-Scottish alliance, where they
agreed to split me up after the Bretons were dead and then pursued a 3-way
draw. I fomented Gaelic-Scottish war as a delay tactic so I could survive
long enough to be included in a 4-way draw. Tension and suspicion
remained
between them until a Scottish stab attempt of the Gaels in 830. Nathan
was
prepared though, and countered it. Previously, Nigel tried a weak stab of
me in 829, but I blocked it.

Unable to make any rapid progress with a sneak attack, and faced with
fearsome Danish expansion, Nigel was satisfied to pursue a 4-way draw at
that point. Greg tried to pull me away from the alliance (and surely
tried
with the others), but with Denmark reaching 18 SCs, there was no margin of
error for anyone to risk a stab. And thus the game ended in a draw.

[quote:c5c1d4000b][quote:c5c1d4000b]Variant View >>>

[/quote:c5c1d4000b][/quote:c5c1d4000b]
(I've already shared a lot of this with B, so sorry if this is repetitive
for you, but I've added a lot since my early analysis.)

I believe the variant suffers from a fundamental flaw that the board is
circular (like a donut). What I mean by this is that each player only is
able to attack their two neighbors in the circle, such as I could only
attack the Bretons or Danes. Every relationship is binary. There are no
good triangles, and no vacant SC areas to keep a player sated for a while
without making any enemies.

The problem with this is that it leads to stagnant diplomacy. Players
cannot easily attack in both directions, so once they pick a direction,
they
are pretty much committed to that path for a while. There is not much
reason to conduct diplomacy, and I found the diplomatic volume was pretty
low in this game.

One could argue that the board isn't circular in that it is possible for
some players to "break" the circle - namely, S-A, S-B, S-D, N-A, or D-N
The
ones diagonal across the North Sea (S-D and N-A) are pretty unlikely.
First
I will look at S-A and S-B across the isle of Britain, and then later D-N.

For S-A, I found it logistically very hard to attack Scotland. The
Bretons
should be in Mercia every time, which makes him a gatekeeper for any land
attack north. By sea, I could get to Deira, but getting an armada to Mof
and Fof would be very tough. It is not a promising path, plus even if
successful would leave me in a tactically unsound extended vertical
position
where I would be very vulnerable to the edge powers in mid-game. From the
Scottish perspective, a sneak attack south with a fleet from Deira into
East
Anglia is possible, but advancement beyond that is limited by the
defensive
chokepoint of Wfc and the need to convoy any armies into the theater
(Scottish home SCs are 5 spaces away from Breton!).

For S-B, this is limited by the Gaels, who serve a similar role as a
"naval
gatekeeper" to Scotland. It would take a very strong relationship indeed
for the Gaels to permit a Breton or Scottish fleet in Gaelic Sea where it
would touch 3 Gaelic SCs. That limits the Bretons to moving up via land
when it is only 2 provinces wide. Progress is possible in Deira and
Strathclyde, but easily defended and dependent upon Gaelic (or maybe
Anglo)
help. At best, they would be the junior partner in a Gaelic alliance, and
the bulk of their forces would presumably be used against the Anglos.
From
the Scottish view, they are likely to have a fleet in Deira, making an
attack on Breton very unwieldy (since an army would be a lot more useful).

For D-N, it's hard to conceive how either could choose to partner with W
against the other. If N-W work together, then the Norse can make a gain
in
Lindholm, but then it gets awkward after that. Even if you give SCs like
Jelling or Alvheim to the Norse, it seems like the Swedes would be trapped
behind the Norse with no exit except through them. They could ally, but
not
against D; N would attack S, and W would attack D.

For D-W to work together, this presents the same issues, with the Danes
making awkward gains in Rogaland or Vestland. D-W can ally, but not
against
N; D would go west vs A, and W would go west vs N, and they would agree on
how to split the ones between them.

Certain relationships are more likely than others. For example, with only
one fleet, B is not well-equipped to attack G. B's armies are best used
against A, and (as mentioned before) B has a great low risk opening
against
A (Pow-Mer, Gwy-Pow; then Mer-Man, Pow-Gwy OR Mer S Pow - Hwi), and thus
is
more likely to attack A. N and W are more likely to fight due to their
interlocked SCs leading to conflict. S and N are less likely to fight due
to the distance involved and the relative ease of naval defense (e.g. if
Scotland gets a fleet to Rogaland Coast and the Norse hold their 2 SCs
there
with land support, the Scots will have a hard time breaking it down;
similar
the other way in Moray Firth).

When all these relationships are analyzed, Denmark clearly has the best
position on the board. D is equally well-positioned to move against
either
A or W, and both A and W are burdened by neighbors pre-disposed to fight
them. This means a willing ally for D whichever way they go, plus little
risk of a stab from behind.

The Anglo-Saxons have it the worst. B is pre-disposed to attack them, and
the D juggernaut is to their east. Not only that, but the relationship
with
B is asymmetrical, in that B has a much easier path to attack A than vice
versa. With 2 armies and more advantageous starting position, B will
likely
get Mercia and Cornwall, and can take the Mer-Hwi line from there. It is
near-impossible for A to later break that line without pressure from
behind,
but with Cornwall in Breton hands, it is very tough to ever get around the
corner there. They can bounce B in Cornwall, but this leaves A down a
build
too. A needs to get G's help, except S is pre-disposed to attack G (since
N
is too far away), and so G will need to defend against S.

If one accepts my judgments of what attacks are pre-disposed to occur,
then
this is likely to happen:

B attacks A
S attacks G
N attacks W
D is left with option of attacking W or A

[quote:c5c1d4000b][quote:c5c1d4000b]Ideas for Variant Adjustments>>>

[/quote:c5c1d4000b][/quote:c5c1d4000b]
One idea is to collapse the North Sea, and make everyone much closer.
What
if Ean-Cir-Jel could all reach each other in two turns?

Another is to collapse the waters above North Sea - e.g., get rid of
Zetland, and combine Sca/Nwg and Mof/Roc. Now S and N can attack each
other
easily.

A third would be to reconfigure the Bretons. This could be done by giving
them two fleets (so they can attack G), but then making it possible for a
fleet to attack the Anglos too. E.g. have Dyfed and Hamptonshire touch
Atlantic Ocean, then combine what's left of English Channel and Strait of
Dover. Now Breton and Anglo can attack each other navally immediately,
plus
Anglo/Gael can attack each other more easily too.

A fourth is to reduce the army vertical distance on Britian, such as to
make
an army attack by any of the 3 on any other of the 3 viable. What if
Pow-Cir-Ean all could reach each other in 2 turns by land?

A fifth is to make the Norse/Swede relationship less messy, so that they
could more easily ally and move in different directions. I'm ok with
messy
rels (I love them in Sengoku!), but it seems a bit unfair that these are
the
only two powers with this type of built-in tension.

This feedback is intended in a purely constructive way. I face a similar
dilemma with my Congress of Vienna variant, which also has "circular"
issues, and I'm still trying to find a solution there. Thinking through
the
dilemma here has helped me to see some new possibilities in my own
variant.
Hope this helps you B. For anyone else who read this far (yeah right!),
thanks! - Nick
[/quote:c5c1d4000b]

--
Diplomacy in Texas!
www.texasdiplomacy.com

http://nairenvorbeck.angelfire.com/
Realpolitik files available here for the Sengoku, Balkans1860, South
American Supremacy, and DarkAges Diplomacy Variants

[/quote:c5c1d4000b]

--
Diplomacy in Texas!
www.texasdiplomacy.com

http://nairenvorbeck.angelfire.com/
Realpolitik files available here for the Sengoku, Balkans1860, South
American Supremacy, and DarkAges Diplomacy Variants

This message is in reply to post 13640:

Thanks to B for running the game, and to my allies Nigel and Nathan for coming together at the end to set up the defense line. Congrats to Gregory for a well-played game. First I will go over a recap of the game from my perspective, and then my view on the variant.

[quote:3ad02c9f6d][quote:3ad02c9f6d]Game Recap >>>

[/quote:3ad02c9f6d][/quote:3ad02c9f6d]
As for this game, I initially was most concerned about Denmark, due to their past success in the variant, and my initial impression that they were "aimed" in my direction instead of Sweden's. I contacted the Swedes for an attack, and got a favorable response.

However, I needed peace with the Bretons to pursue this plan. Matt negotiated pretty hard, insisting on getting both Mercia and Cornwall. He argued that I should be satisfied with Brittany, and he deserves Cornwall. This potentially could be reasonable, but something about Matt's tone left me worried where I didn't feel comfortable about having a long-term alliance. Once my units were pushed east against the Danes, I would be powerless to do anything about the Breton threats in Cornwall and Mercia. I was very concerned about a Breton opening into Mercia in spring, followed by a move into Middle Anglia in fall with their other army trailing into Mercia. This would be a very low-risk opening by Breton, while I would be entirely defenseless against it if I pushed east.

If I had felt confident moving against the Danes, I would have done a bold move like convoying an army to the continent or trying to sneak into NFC in fall. Instead, I opened by moving my army defensively to Middle Anglia, and moved my fleets to take Austrasia and Brittany. I had tried to woo the Gaels into moving to Cardigan Bay against Breton, but much to my dismay the Gaels and Scots moved very aggressively against each other. I got a little lucky when the Bretons did not open to Mercia, and was then able to bounce him there in fall.

At this point, I was locked into war with Breton, as confirmed by his two army builds. The Gaels and Scots were locked in war as well. I put all of my diplomatic efforts into making peace between the Gaels and Scots, and gaining Nathan as an ally to attack the Bretons. Nathan seemed open to the possibility, but Nigel was not. This left the four of us in two separate evenly matched wars where nobody made progress.

In the east, the Danes and Norse made short work of the Swedes, and eventually they both turned west. Nigel and I would face the brunt of this attack, so we started cooperating together against the Bretons and Gaels. Nigel and I had a slight edge in this war that we could have eventually pressed to total victory, but we were not able to accomplish this before the Danes/Norse sent fleets west.

Death looked imminent for us (Scots and Anglos), but we were saved by the Danish stab of the Norse. I had not held out any real hope that either would stab the other, and was pleasantly surprised by this. I immediately sued for peace with Greg, and he acquiesced, promising to pull back from Neustria to Austrasia. The Gaels had come out the worst in the west, and were down to 3 SCs. I had emerged badly when the Danes stabbed me, and the Bretons had taken advantage to reach 6 SCs while I was down to 4. Tempted by the carrot of the return of his Irish SC that Nigel had taken, Nathan was amenable to joining the Scotch/Anglo alliance and helping us carve up the powerful 6-SC Bretons.

The next phase of the game saw the Norse steadily devoured by the Danes, while the Bretons were killed in the west. One could ask why I never moved against the Danes, but I had little choice. All of my units were consumed in the protracted war against Breton, in particular containing a rogue unit behind my back lines. Nigel couldn't do much to help the Norse, and so his fleets just kinda hung out around Scotland while the Danish armies made their way across Scandinavia.

The final phase saw the 3 of us left in the west, and the Danes in the east. I was most concerned about a Gaelic-Scottish alliance, where they agreed to split me up after the Bretons were dead and then pursued a 3-way draw. I fomented Gaelic-Scottish war as a delay tactic so I could survive long enough to be included in a 4-way draw. Tension and suspicion remained between them until a Scottish stab attempt of the Gaels in 830. Nathan was prepared though, and countered it. Previously, Nigel tried a weak stab of me in 829, but I blocked it.

Unable to make any rapid progress with a sneak attack, and faced with fearsome Danish expansion, Nigel was satisfied to pursue a 4-way draw at that point. Greg tried to pull me away from the alliance (and surely tried with the others), but with Denmark reaching 18 SCs, there was no margin of error for anyone to risk a stab. And thus the game ended in a draw.

[quote:3ad02c9f6d][quote:3ad02c9f6d]Variant View >>>

[/quote:3ad02c9f6d][/quote:3ad02c9f6d]
(I've already shared a lot of this with B, so sorry if this is repetitive for you, but I've added a lot since my early analysis.)

I believe the variant suffers from a fundamental flaw that the board is circular (like a donut). What I mean by this is that each player only is able to attack their two neighbors in the circle, such as I could only attack the Bretons or Danes. Every relationship is binary. There are no good triangles, and no vacant SC areas to keep a player sated for a while without making any enemies.

The problem with this is that it leads to stagnant diplomacy. Players cannot easily attack in both directions, so once they pick a direction, they are pretty much committed to that path for a while. There is not much reason to conduct diplomacy, and I found the diplomatic volume was pretty low in this game.

One could argue that the board isn't circular in that it is possible for some players to "break" the circle - namely, S-A, S-B, S-D, N-A, or D-N The ones diagonal across the North Sea (S-D and N-A) are pretty unlikely. First I will look at S-A and S-B across the isle of Britain, and then later D-N.

For S-A, I found it logistically very hard to attack Scotland. The Bretons should be in Mercia every time, which makes him a gatekeeper for any land attack north. By sea, I could get to Deira, but getting an armada to Mof and Fof would be very tough. It is not a promising path, plus even if successful would leave me in a tactically unsound extended vertical position where I would be very vulnerable to the edge powers in mid-game. From the Scottish perspective, a sneak attack south with a fleet from Deira into East Anglia is possible, but advancement beyond that is limited by the defensive chokepoint of Wfc and the need to convoy any armies into the theater (Scottish home SCs are 5 spaces away from Breton!).

For S-B, this is limited by the Gaels, who serve a similar role as a "naval gatekeeper" to Scotland. It would take a very strong relationship indeed for the Gaels to permit a Breton or Scottish fleet in Gaelic Sea where it would touch 3 Gaelic SCs. That limits the Bretons to moving up via land when it is only 2 provinces wide. Progress is possible in Deira and Strathclyde, but easily defended and dependent upon Gaelic (or maybe Anglo) help. At best, they would be the junior partner in a Gaelic alliance, and the bulk of their forces would presumably be used against the Anglos. From the Scottish view, they are likely to have a fleet in Deira, making an attack on Breton very unwieldy (since an army would be a lot more useful).

For D-N, it's hard to conceive how either could choose to partner with W against the other. If N-W work together, then the Norse can make a gain in Lindholm, but then it gets awkward after that. Even if you give SCs like Jelling or Alvheim to the Norse, it seems like the Swedes would be trapped behind the Norse with no exit except through them. They could ally, but not against D; N would attack S, and W would attack D.

For D-W to work together, this presents the same issues, with the Danes making awkward gains in Rogaland or Vestland. D-W can ally, but not against N; D would go west vs A, and W would go west vs N, and they would agree on how to split the ones between them.

Certain relationships are more likely than others. For example, with only one fleet, B is not well-equipped to attack G. B's armies are best used against A, and (as mentioned before) B has a great low risk opening against A (Pow-Mer, Gwy-Pow; then Mer-Man, Pow-Gwy OR Mer S Pow - Hwi), and thus is more likely to attack A. N and W are more likely to fight due to their interlocked SCs leading to conflict. S and N are less likely to fight due to the distance involved and the relative ease of naval defense (e.g. if Scotland gets a fleet to Rogaland Coast and the Norse hold their 2 SCs there with land support, the Scots will have a hard time breaking it down; similar the other way in Moray Firth).

When all these relationships are analyzed, Denmark clearly has the best position on the board. D is equally well-positioned to move against either A or W, and both A and W are burdened by neighbors pre-disposed to fight them. This means a willing ally for D whichever way they go, plus little risk of a stab from behind.

The Anglo-Saxons have it the worst. B is pre-disposed to attack them, and the D juggernaut is to their east. Not only that, but the relationship with B is asymmetrical, in that B has a much easier path to attack A than vice versa. With 2 armies and more advantageous starting position, B will likely get Mercia and Cornwall, and can take the Mer-Hwi line from there. It is near-impossible for A to later break that line without pressure from behind, but with Cornwall in Breton hands, it is very tough to ever get around the corner there. They can bounce B in Cornwall, but this leaves A down a build too. A needs to get G's help, except S is pre-disposed to attack G (since N is too far away), and so G will need to defend against S.

If one accepts my judgments of what attacks are pre-disposed to occur, then this is likely to happen:

B attacks A
S attacks G
N attacks W
D is left with option of attacking W or A

[quote:3ad02c9f6d][quote:3ad02c9f6d]Ideas for Variant Adjustments>>>

[/quote:3ad02c9f6d][/quote:3ad02c9f6d]
One idea is to collapse the North Sea, and make everyone much closer. What if Ean-Cir-Jel could all reach each other in two turns?

Another is to collapse the waters above North Sea - e.g., get rid of Zetland, and combine Sca/Nwg and Mof/Roc. Now S and N can attack each other easily.

A third would be to reconfigure the Bretons. This could be done by giving them two fleets (so they can attack G), but then making it possible for a fleet to attack the Anglos too. E.g. have Dyfed and Hamptonshire touch Atlantic Ocean, then combine what's left of English Channel and Strait of Dover. Now Breton and Anglo can attack each other navally immediately, plus Anglo/Gael can attack each other more easily too.

A fourth is to reduce the army vertical distance on Britian, such as to make an army attack by any of the 3 on any other of the 3 viable. What if Pow-Cir-Ean all could reach each other in 2 turns by land?

A fifth is to make the Norse/Swede relationship less messy, so that they could more easily ally and move in different directions. I'm ok with messy rels (I love them in Sengoku!), but it seems a bit unfair that these are the only two powers with this type of built-in tension.

This feedback is intended in a purely constructive way. I face a similar dilemma with my Congress of Vienna variant, which also has "circular" issues, and I'm still trying to find a solution there. Thinking through the dilemma here has helped me to see some new possibilities in my own variant. Hope this helps you B. For anyone else who read this far (yeah right!), thanks! - Nick

There are 10 Messages in this Thread:


DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (NickHiggins) Dec 20, 01:27 am

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (MattKelly) Dec 20, 06:00 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (Kenshi777) Dec 26, 10:44 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (Kenshi777) Dec 26, 10:50 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (NickHiggins) Dec 27, 04:59 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (packrat) Dec 27, 05:33 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (FuzzyLogic) Dec 27, 06:14 pm

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (Kenshi777) Dec 28, 11:46 am

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (Kenshi777) Dec 28, 11:52 am

DC 262: Angstskrik - Anglo Saxon EOG (Kenshi777) Dec 28, 11:58 am

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