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Anyone have Axis and Allies miniatures?

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  • Anyone have Axis and Allies miniatures?

    Wondering what you think of them. I have a few boxes here but haven't had time to sit down with them, other than briefly look them over. Seems pretty cool for what they are, but more curious about the actual play.

    I need some things that I can eventually teach my son.
    Our forefathers died to give us freedom, not free stuff.

    I write books about zombies as E.E. Isherwood. Check me out at ZombieBooks.net.

  • #2
    I WANT to get them, but as free is unlikely, I am likely out of luck

    They do appear popular in my neck of the woods though.

    Popular is defined by anything that is sold by the case rather than individual units.
    Life is change. Built models for decades.
    Not sure anyone here actually knows the real me.
    I didn't for a long time either.

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    • #3
      A have the starter set and a couple of expansion packs, but I don't think I'll be spending a lot more on it. I don't really like the fact that the packs are random. I realize that is the nature of a "collectable" game, but that just doesn't suit me. All in all, it looks pretty neat, something a little easier than a lot of games, maybe something to get a non-wargamer started. If I had the money I'd probably get into it a little more, but alas, so many games, so little money, and I've already got a pretty long list of games I want as it is.

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      • #4
        I have a few boxes as well, but I probably wont buy any more either. Its however a great way to lure people into wargaming. The miniatures looks rather nice (with some major exceptions), the rules are simple, the game time short and it honestly feel like a real wargame.

        Last edited by Pergite; 05 Jun 06, 06:21.
        "The secret of war lies in the communications" - Napoleon Bonaparte

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        • #5
          A&A minis gameplay

          Originally posted by Siberian HEAT
          but more curious about the actual play.
          I've got 2 starter boxes and about 6 expansions.
          I stopped buying because I have enough to "play tanks" with my son, but I wasn't going to sink any more into a game where I couldn't even get a decent squad of Americans together.
          It seems like the creators are more interested in recreating the feel of a war movie like The Dirty Dozen or Kelly's Heroes, than actual combat between real units. Maybe they'll start selling "unit" packs like Flames of War, but I doubt it.

          Gameplay? It's fine. You get to roll a LOT of dice , which kids love to do anyway (if you're teaching your son), but for a grog, it'll get tedious after a while.
          You don't need a lot of tabletop space for the maps, unless you piece 4-6 together. You DO need a lot of tabletop space for the cards, though. Expect to refer to the cards a bunch during the first game, until you get comfortable with the stats for your favorite tanks.

          There's not much in the way of leadership/heroic characters, a la LnL, which seems odd for a game where individual soldiers are moved around the map. Maybe it'll be in a later expansion.

          Overall: fun diversion for an afternoon, but not more than two-three times unless you sink a lot of dough into building some units. As an intro for kids, tho, it should work nicely, especially if you use a lot of tanks. As the standing game between Grognards, I'd look elsewhere for WWII (LnL, original SL, Ambush, etc).
          In the event of another forum meltdown, feel free to join us over at www.armchairdragoons.com

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          • #6
            Don't own the game myself but often went out to play with colleagues and friends (the original version as well as 'Europe' ). I like the game but you need a couple of hours. To my taste it comes close enough to a real war game on a global scale, especially if you want to recreate conditions on particular fronts.
            IMO the excitement of experiencing the real thing in a board game comes closest in LnL but at least to me it is difficult to get opponents.

            I'm not so sure about suitability of A&A for children, perhaps if they over 12 years old it may work. They will definitely get a good overview of WW2.
            BoRG

            You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by captainsennef
              Don't own the game myself but often went out to play with colleagues and friends (the original version as well as 'Europe' ). I like the game but you need a couple of hours. To my taste it comes close enough to a real war game on a global scale, especially if you want to recreate conditions on particular fronts.
              IMO the excitement of experiencing the real thing in a board game comes closest in LnL but at least to me it is difficult to get opponents.

              I'm not so sure about suitability of A&A for children, perhaps if they over 12 years old it may work. They will definitely get a good overview of WW2.
              You are talking about the good old classic Axis & Allies boardgame. Avalon Hill has beefed up its franchise to include alot of new other titles, among them Axis & Allies miniatures
              "The secret of war lies in the communications" - Napoleon Bonaparte

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Pergite
                You are talking about the good old classic Axis & Allies boardgame. Avalon Hill has beefed up its franchise to include alot of new other titles, among them Axis & Allies miniatures
                I stand corrected.
                BoRG

                You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

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                • #9
                  use a tape measure instead of the hexmaps

                  I bought a bunch of these on ebay. The advantage of this approach is that you can pick which units you will get. This is important if you want to build units that consist of several pieces of the same type. For example, my Allies have a troop of Shermans and an infantry battalion with a bunch of riflemen and some heavy weapons support (machine guns and mortars), plus leaders.

                  The pieces don't really fit on the hexmap provided with the basic game, so I prefer to play as miniatures on a terrain I create with fabric remnants and pillows on the living room floor. I bought some interesting fabric remnants to represent rivers, roads, forests, etc. For scale I use a tape measure, translating 1 hex equals 1 foot (you can get away with 1 hex equals 10 cm if you don't have quite enough space). Everything else is pretty much as per the game rules.

                  Some of the unit statistics seem a bit unbalanced. For example the frontal defense for PzKmpf IV and Shermans is each 5, but I thought the Panzer IVs were generally better armored than the Shermans, which were only successful when they outnumbered the German tanks.

                  Another complaint is that the vehicles are built on a much smaller scale than the people, so the appearance is a bit cheesy if you think about it too much.

                  I think there may be better miniatures rules sets available, but the pieces themselves are fairly cost-effective if you buy the exact ones you want at auction on ebay.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Siberian HEAT
                    Wondering what you think of them. I have a few boxes here but haven't had time to sit down with them, other than briefly look them over. Seems pretty cool for what they are, but more curious about the actual play.

                    I need some things that I can eventually teach my son.
                    I've been buying boosters off an on since it came out. The nice thing about the game is that the figures alone are nice enough to attract people. I set them up in my cubicle and non-wargamers gather around to ogle them.

                    The game system is reasonably fun. A good, light, fast playing wargame. A fine introduction into the hobby.
                    Errant Knight Music

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                    • #11
                      Thanks for the feedback guys. If anyone is interested in doing a short write up for the site on the game system I have a few booster packs here to entice you.
                      Our forefathers died to give us freedom, not free stuff.

                      I write books about zombies as E.E. Isherwood. Check me out at ZombieBooks.net.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Siberian HEAT
                        Thanks for the feedback guys. If anyone is interested in doing a short write up for the site on the game system I have a few booster packs here to entice you.
                        A Short Review of Axis and Allies Miniatures

                        A&A Minis is a collectible WW II miniatures game. It's designed to give the flavor of company (or smaller) sized operations while abstracting most of the details. In other words, this is a "game," not a simulation.

                        The Collectibility Problem. Many people will be turned off on this game because it's a "collectible." A lot of this stems from the basic fear of having to sink hundreds of dollars into the game before you get anything remotely playable. As collectible games go, this one doesn't require a large investment. That is, if all you're looking for is a game. If you are aiming to collect a complete historical set, you're gonna have to spend some money. Or get the figures off of E-bay. There is a pretty nice distribution of available units: various infantry units (machine gun units, elite units, etc), tanks, antitank guns, mortars and the like. The newer sets also include aircraft and anti-aircraft units. All the major combatants of WWII are now available. For the original release I found that the starter set plus a couple of boosters produced a light 2-player wargame for about $40. But is it any good? Let's take a look.

                        The Components. I've only got stuff from the original release, so take everytyhing I say here with a significant grain of salt. The figures themselves are reasonable. Basic plastic minis from China or wherever. The modeling is quite acceptable (for an amateur like me), but the paint job varies quite a bit. I rather like the Pz IV's, but the Shermans are atrocious. I've seen some of the newer models in casual play (I've watched people play them) and I think the modeling/painting is improving. But don't expect to be floored by the quality of the figures. (But at least you don't have to paint them!) Also, some of the pictures on the accompanying stat cards do not match the actual figures. That's just plain sloppy, in my opinion. The game comes with a 8 maps (4 sheets printed on both sides) that are combined to form a 4 x 4 battlefield in 6 different configurations. Or at least the rulebook shows 6 different configurations. Obviously you can combine them any way you like. The maps themselves are made out of medium weight laminated paper and contain large hexes for unit placement/movement. The game allows multiple units to be stacked in a single hex. They maps are very pretty and there is a fair amount of different terrain types (roads, woods, city, etc) to keep things lively. It helps to have some kind of clear plastic to lay over the battlefield to compensate for the inevitable creases that you get with laminated paper. Strangely, the scale of the terrain doesn't really match the scale of the figures. E.g. The Town squares are just different colored hexes, you don't get any sense of city fighting, although city hexes do affect combat.

                        Game Play. Ok, this is where the rubber meets the road. Each turn is broken up into multiple phases which I think can be summarized as: move, assault, resolve casualties. You role for initiative each turn, and the player who wins initiative get to decide who moves first. Movement phase: first player moves any or all units, second player moves any or all units. Assault phase: First player moves any or all units or attacks with any or all units. Second player does likewise. Attacks are considered simultaneous, so you don't have to worry about being destroyed before you get off a shot. After the assault phase, you resolve casualties. The combat resolution is very primitive, you won't have to worry about running out of ammo, but contains some intermediate damaged states (disrupted, damaged, destroyed) that keeps things interesting. Also, they do factor in range. Basically, each unit has an attack value (represented by the number of dice rolled) that is adjusted down by range. The defense of a unit is reflected in the number of hits required to hurt it on any given attack. Unit facing and terrain can also affect how hard it is to hit unit. By default, you need to roll at least a 5 to hit a unit. So to hit a Sherman from the front, you have to roll at least five 5's when attacking. A Pz IV rolls 11 dice when shooting at long range (5-8 hexes), which is about halfway across the battlefield. That should give you some idea about the lethality of combat.

                        Many of the units have special abilities that can dramatically affect their combat stats, so there was at least some attempt made to inject some detail into many of the units. For example, the Churchill Crocodile comes equipped with a flamethrower. Yeehaw! You can imagine the effect it has on infantry.

                        Despite it's simplicity (or maybe because of it) I enjoy the game. It's gets pretty tense (you often have to make some very difficult decisions during the assault phase) and does allow you to use at least some military tactics (like overwatch) despite it's abstractions. But make no mistake, this is a dicefest. You can minimize the odds, but you can't control the odds. If you're one of those people (like myself) that seem to have angered the "Gods of Dice" for some arcane reason, you can end up getting creamed no matter how good your tactics are. But I often have fun even when I get slaughtered. And anyway, it's just toy soldiers.

                        Tim
                        "I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. I just kiss. I don't even wait. You can do anything... Grab them by the [redacted]. You can do anything."
                        -The President of the United States of America.

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                        • #13
                          I need some things that I can eventually teach my son.
                          Get the ASLSKs and learn ASL with your son. I got them for my son and in anshort time, he progressed to the full rules and is giving me a challenge. Don't fool around with toys, play a real wargame!
                          Blackcloud6

                          Refighting World War II - One hex at a time!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Blackcloud6
                            Get the ASLSKs and learn ASL with your son. I got them for my son and in anshort time, he progressed to the full rules and is giving me a challenge. Don't fool around with toys, play a real wargame!
                            I should mention my son is 9 weeks old. Is that to late to start him on the ASL rulebook?
                            Our forefathers died to give us freedom, not free stuff.

                            I write books about zombies as E.E. Isherwood. Check me out at ZombieBooks.net.

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                            • #15
                              I should mention my son is 9 weeks old. Is that to late to start him on the ASL rulebook?
                              Well, the only danger I see, he may try to eat the counters...
                              Blackcloud6

                              Refighting World War II - One hex at a time!

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