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In Axis and Allies (as in the real war), Germany and Japan together have more industrial power, represented by industrial production certificates (IPCs) than Britain and Russia combined. Hence The US holds the balance of power.

Although the game is still tilted in favor of the Allies, it is much closer than in "real life" because US industrial capacity has been reduced by almost two-thirds. In fact, bidding systems have shown that if you give the Axis a one-time boost of only 12 IPCs at the beginning of the game, it would be even, assuming that Russia is not allowed to attack the first turn.

Axis and Allies - Is there a best country?

Could the game be balanced by reducing America's strength just a bit more? Specifically by taking away 1, 2, or all three of the 3 IPCS per turn that the US receives from Brazil? (This would reduce her IPCs per turn to 35, 34, or 33 respectively. Even allowing for the factors of time and distance, might this not be equivalent to the "one time" boost of only 12 IPCs to the Axis at the beginning of the game?

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Which version of A&A are you talking about? There are many, going back to the original Nova Games version, and each one is different enough to require different balancing. – Lewis Pulsipher May 31 '14 at 10:30

This would be an interesting variation. I'm thinking you would have to remove all 3 IPC from Brazil. The timing of when IPCs are delivered has a huge effect. Early IPCs allow the Germans to build up faster and drive Russia back, put a nice force into Africa quickly, or replace one of their lost fighters that they usually lose 1st turn. Even so, losing 3 IPC/turn from Brazil might not be as much of a factor as 12 IPC early. 3 IPC is only 1 less US infantry. The US threat builds over time, and is mainly in the form of retaking western Africa, threatening Europe, or reinforcing Karelia. All of these sap German resources. By turn 4 when the US had lost 12 IPC from the Brazilian removal, the US forces would already by doing most of the damage they could be doing, and the German lack of 12 IPCs would already be showing in the inability to expand as quickly.

Why not just whack the US first production by 12 IPCs? You could justify it as a late start into the war because of Pearl Harbor and taking time to mobilize its defense industry. (Of course, in reality, the US defense industry was going quite heartily, supplying the Allied forces).

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