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Some House Rules for Consideration


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Posted on the Anniversary of the French Surrender (1940) and the invasion of the Soviet Union (1941).

It seems futile to me at this point to keep proposing ammendments to the game that Hubert has said won't be applied to SC and only possibly to SC 2. Instead I've begun working on feasable house Rules that players can agree on and use in non-competitive games.

House Rules:

Amphibious Invasions:

Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea and Red Sea

= Can be conducted any time of the year.

Atlantic from NE of Brest to within three hexes of Brussels & all coastal hexes of Britain along The English Channel and Western coastline including Ireland up to Scapa Flow:

= Can be conducted during the months of May, June, July, August, and Sept, only.

North Sea -- All Hexes from three hexes SW of Brussels to one Hex SE of Oslo (technically in Baltic but North Sea for invasion purposes).

= Can be conducted during the months of May, June, July and August only.

Baltic Sea from one hex SE of Oslo and the Northern Tip of Denmark: All coasts of Sweden, Finland, Russia, Baltic States, Germany and Eastern Denmark:

= Can be conducted during the months of June, July and August only.

There would be no limit on the number of troops that could be involved, but they could only land amphibiously in the given zones during the stated months.

Low Countries Gambit:

Allies cannot invade The Low Countries until April of 1940.

Operation Barbarossa

Germany can launch the Invasion of the Soviet Union in any given year, but only during the Following months only.:

May, June, July and August.

[ June 22, 2003, 03:15 PM: Message edited by: JerseyJohn ]

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You know JJ I hate house rules, BUT your right, if we want to see the game flow in the direction each of us desire's then they will be required (each of us would like to see it go in a different way, thats life right :D )

I noticed your HR are heavy on date/time based interesting.

Here is the list I've been working on:

1) Allied victory if no siberian transfer after Feb 1942. (Assume Hitler is assinated for not delivering the 'living space in the east' and the SS and Army fall into cival war)

2a) No landing of troops on enemy soil the same turn you DOW. (this might make the game too hard for the axis)

2b) No landing of troops on major powers the same turn you DOW or the activte.

3) No more then 2 (3?) chits in any one tech. This should slow down the race for the air ace but would be impossiable to control.

4) You must take these citys if they are empty. London, Paris, any Russia capital.

Just my two cents.

[ June 22, 2003, 02:11 PM: Message edited by: Iron Ranger ]

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I believe the game could be balanced considerably by simply upping Russian readiness. This would help blunt the take over every Axis minor strategy, which is probably the hardest Axis strategy to beat for the average Allied player.

I would also vote for no Dutch Gambit and no Rome Gambit. The game should be decided in Russia, not the Low Countries or Italy in 1940.

I would vote against all these date based and can't land on DOW rules. They would simply be too cumbersome to implement. I would also vote against any limitation on number of units or chits committed to research. IMO, any house rule should follow the KISS principle...keep it simple stupid.

IMO, a lot of people in this discussion will get bogged down in the small picture, without realizing a broader solution has broader application, and thus can solve more. Specifically, the solutions should be strategic (war readiness) rather than something tactical that effects one theatre of conflict.

I think this discussion is good. We would have to implement the proposed changes by majority, though. Everyone is going to have ideas, and it would seem only the most commonly addressed ones should be considered seriously, and even then, I doubt there will unamity of opinion.


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Iron Ranger

I'm not in love with house rules myself and in some of my early postings I was known to become hostile to HR suggestions. I felt then, and feel now, that they are not a solution, only an emergiency measure. So it's ironic that even though neither of us relish this alternative we've both been thinking along those lines.

I noticed your HR are heavy on date/time based interesting.

My reasoning on the Amphibious Operations is self-evident; if they aren't launched during good weather they'd have no chance of succeeding. Good weather varies in different locations. I've gone for generalizations, figuring the Med is a blanck check, the Atlantic would be the next easiest, but with a much smaller window of opportunity and the North Sea and Baltic would have even smaller windows of opportunity, basically only warm weather months in all cases.

The reason for limiting Barbarossa to summer and adjoining months only is earlier or later and they'd have had mud, the Germans knew this and planned the operation for May, 1941. Yugoslavia and Greece threw them off the mark. In the end that turned out to be indirectly decisive. By forcing the Axis to fit it within a seasonal timeframe, if they miss the 1941 season they face a much stronger USSR in 1942. Without being able to invade or conduct amphib attacks during the winter it becomes more of an honest campaign. Though the lack of a Russian Winter still has a drastic effect upon the Soviet chances.

"Here is the list I've been working on:

1) Allied victory if no siberian transfer after Feb 1942. (Assume Hitler is assinated for not delivering the 'living space in the east' and the SS and Army fall into cival war)"

A good idea but I'd rephrase it to be the first February after the start of Barbarossa. I'm also a bit disgusted with the Siberian transfer, it always arrives too late and too far away from where it's needed. How about having those units arrive starting 1 hex east of Moscow when the Germans take either Smolensk or Leningrad or come within six hexes of Moscow itself? I find myself attempting to fit them into an already wrecked line. Unlike the actual war, the Germans don't need to be concerned about the season, so breakthroughs on the impossibly weakened Soviet defensive lines can run four hexes back even during muddy November! I give up! What's the point?

"2a) No landing of troops on enemy soil the same turn you DOW. (this might make the game too hard for the axis)"

A very good rule. The only exceptions I think would need to be Norway and Sweden, otherwise they can hardly be effectifely invaded.

"2b) No landing of troops on major powers the same turn you DOW or they activte."

Covers Italy pretty well.

"3) No more then 2 (3?) chits in any one tech. This should slow down the race for the air ace but would be impossiable to control."

My problem here is it's on the honor system which means, if one side makes too much progress in one area, people would start accusing each other of violating the rule. Even if they don't accuse, they might still think it. Aside from which, (1) I'm not convinced it really increases the results very much and (2) This is one area where I think the individual ought to be on his own to invest as he wants.

"4) You must take these citys if they are empty. London, Paris, any Russian capital."

Sure, but I'd ammend it to say if one or more units are adjacent to it they can't be moved away unless at least one of them occupies the empty city or moves through it, capturing the city in the process.

Thanks for adding your own ideas -- we've both put our two cents in. smile.gif

[ June 23, 2003, 11:04 PM: Message edited by: JerseyJohn ]

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Good points, agree on most and on the others I don't disagree strongly enough to post a counterpoint.

I'd just as soon say NO LC Gambit at all, to me it's something that just wouldn't have happened historically and I can't see the anti-Italian tactics either, but other than activating Italy from the start, as Immer proposes, I see no way to make rules against it.

One solution I considered was in activating Italy from the start but with the house rule being that Italy can't be attacked till it attacks first, and Italy can't attack till the after Paris is taken by Germany. It can attack even within the same turn, but Paris must be taken first. I didn't state it because (1) I'm not sure it's practical and (2) I want to first see what Immer has come up with.

Glad this thread is moving along with good ideas.

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Siberian Transfer:

Maybe the allied player should be allowed to push the transfer by sending some reinforcement into the pacific conflict (ships, corps or mmps). These units could be brought back (after some years of duty) to europe, exit and re-entry-point could be egypt/suez.

These reinforcements would have convinced Stalin that the japs are diverted enough to weaken his eastern garrisons some weeks sooner than planed.

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House rules are hard for the fact the game engine isn't designed around them. A new rule now is the fact that you can't land transports in Italy or Russia the same turn you. I really think it'd be kinda kewl if you could have the whole system setup without the gambits, biddings, and tricks. Favouring a more playable historical perspective. Instead of a quick 2 hour bash...

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No one has addressed the air problem yet, and I really don't know of a house rule that would fix it. I do have a quirky idea that I wouldn't mind trying out in PBEM.

What if you were only allowed to have the fighters and bombers you start with? You could replace those air fleets but could not build anymore. Jet tech could start out around level 3 to give them a punch. Tanks could start at a higher tech across the board to force break throughs.

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I think if you want to make breakthroughs more possible we should change a factor in gameplay. Don't allow fighter air squadrons to attack anything only used for interception and escort roles the actual fact of their existence. Only bombers may attack and destroy enemy equipment. Being a mixture of Fighter-Bombers or Heavy bombers for all targets.

Change the role of Rockets and include them in start as Artillery with an introduced tech level. Boom, no more Ahistorical F-16s with lasersighted smart bombs ;)

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An interesting idea but in the actual war I don't think Stalin would have seen it that way, he'd have been just as apprehensive of Western troops as he was of the Japanese. Also, as they wouldn't have been in a position to interdict Japanese moves on Siberia, or any other part of Russia, he would most likely have ignored them.

Thanks for listing the idea but it would be impossible to use that as a House Rule! I think it should be listed in Edwin's thread of SC Game rule suggestions; these are only things the players can put into effect.


Bombers are a good idea but I don't think they'd have the impact to really damage ground units, there would be deadlocks all over the place.

Rockets range, at 50 - 250 miles, can't possibly be associated with artillery, they can only be seen as rockets. Nor can they be seen as ground attack aircraft as they can't be interdicted.

The idea itself would have merit except they can't be transported and only mainland European nations such, Germany, France, Italy and the USSR would be able to build them to any effect.


I like the idea of putting a cap on air fleets. It was discussed a while back in two or three different Threads, which I'll link below.

One of the problems with attempting it as a house rule there would be hard feelings when players, accidentally or otherwise, overstep the limit. There'd also be accusations galore and the exact number would be difficult to keep track of as the war spreads to numerous theaters.

The limitation I'd impose would be partially based upon the duration of the way; let's say two new airfleets could be added the first calendar year and one each year afterward, so in the third year of the war Germany could have six, England five and France (hypothetically) four.

We don't have to worry about the above mentioned mutual suspicion question, so I'm sure we can test some form of this rule in our own games, and I'm looking forward to it. The good thing about it is it would make both bombers and rockets more important, as suggested earlier by Liam.

Among the ideas explored in the links listed below are limiting the maximum numbers of various units through an expanded campaign editor -- second Group of Threads. The first thread, . . . Bullying Air Fleets helped set the stage for that idea.

Links to Related Threads:

The Air War in SC.

*Solutions for the Bullying Air Fleet Problem.

*Separate Units and Research Fields for Prop and Jet Aircraft

An Expanded Campaign/Scenario Editor.

*Player Defined Unit Limits in the Scenario Editor.

*Map Editor and Troop Placement for Non-starting Nations in the Expanded Campaign Editor.

[ June 22, 2003, 10:07 PM: Message edited by: JerseyJohn ]

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How about changing the bid system? Instead of bidding 100 extra for UK, USA, USSR. Change it: give UK x1, USA x2, USSR x2 for whatever the bid amount is.

On second thought, things aren't that bad. Deal with it.


[ June 22, 2003, 10:28 PM: Message edited by: jon_j_rambo ]

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Quick rundown on my first game with the HR 'ST transfer by March 1st 1942'

Air Zapp against Iron - std Fall Weiss

The game opened normally. LC, Denmark & Poland fell turns 2,3,4 respectivly. France fell mid June. Norway fell July, UK conducts raids in norway and W France. Axis DOW Sweden and VF in Aug, both last 4 turns and cost axis MPPs in units and transport fees. Jan 1941 axis control all hexs of DOWed countrys and are pushing into Egypt, steady air battles over england (rockets too). Yogo coup in July 1941, axis takes control of all UK/Med based countrys. Axis DOW USSR when readness reachs 100% and invades Iraq, its the last turn in Nov. USA has been in the game for one turn, the ground attack on USSR is average, Zapp conceades knowing he can't trigger the transfer in the 3-4 turns he has left before March 1 1942.

Tech results (at the end)

Ger L2 AT - L3 RK - L4 Jets - L3 LR(?) (10chits?)

UK L1 IT - L3 Jets (5 chits invested)

USA L1 AT - L1 Jets (2chits invested)

Germany had 8 air fleets and 2 rockets - I have know idea what Italy had. UK had 2 air fleets the bomber and the normal units you save when pulling out of france, no ships lost several damaged and repaired.


This house rule really puts a crimp in the presant way we play germany (IP). You no longer have the time to invest heavyly in tech and buy lots of expensive units. And % readness means nothing except a small control on the minors you attack. Germany MUST plan a summer invasion if she hopes to 'pass' this test and continue the game. All good things except the western allies can quite easily counter invade western France in the Summer of 42 and the Axis will have even less (maybe) converted countrys to assist in stoping this.


Step 1) Cancel the FF unit option - no FF units for UK. This way she must spend MPPs on units to defend against Sealion and not in tech to easly out pace Germany. In the above game I had, FF units were 2 A, 2 C, 1 HQ, one BC - 1800+ MPPs)

Step 2) (I don't like this one and will not use it till step 1 it tested) Nerf the starting armys for USA. Historicaly USA didn't have 4 ready to go armys in fall of 1941. All 4 must be cashed in (unless transports are sitting on the coast - then consider them the Nat. Gaurd just called up) and the MPPs can be put to any use THE NEXT TURN (axis can verify use the report secreen that this was done).

Maybe this is not a good idea, but I'm open so suggestions. The idea here is to keep playbalance close to even still (slightly pro axis now, quite pro allied with ST HR) and make the game closer to historical on dates.

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Try the following house rule:

2 chit max per research. Slows down research a bit, makes level 4 & level 5 more difficult to reach, and leads you to try new tactics when you gain tech in rockets or subs instead of jets.

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In my opinion you guys are still making this WAY to complicated. Iron Ranger has discovered something that Hubert has been grappling with all along. When you fiddle with one "unbalancing" aspect of the game, something (often unexpected) pops out the other side. Hubert is up to 1.07 on SC 1, and it's still not perfect, but it IS still the best strategic wargame I've ever played.

And now people want to address things with more layers of house rules. Pretty soon it's going to look like a Rube Goldberg contraption!

I'll repeat my last post. The easiest way to address things is by doing two things. First, a bid, which is already being done. And Rambo's idea to make the Russian bid twice the other Allies is excellent. (I don't remember if Rambo thought up the bidding system, but he definately championed it.) Zapp had the idea to make the bid 1 to 10 in favor of the Russians, which is the direction I would be going, as IMO the imbalance in the game is in Russia. The US and England are about right.

The second, and easiest way to smooth things out would be to include increased Russian readiness as a component of the bid. THe Americans are piqued by Axis aggression, it's Uncle Joe that's the problem, he sits there guzzling vodka and shooting officers and initiating pogroms while all of Europe goes up in flames.

I've played games with increased Russian readiness, and believe me, it cures a lot of ills. Every turn the Russians come in sooner is close to two high value units that the Axis doesn't get to buy...and do a-historical things with.

You guys should try some games where Russian readiness is increased by lets say 10 points. It's quite interesting how it plays out.

I vote for 1) No Dutch Gambit 2) No Rome Gambit 3) Increased Russian readiness in the bid.


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I gotta agree with you on the bid on readiness. I've mentioned it before, and have wondered if anyone has tried it out. Bids could be just on the Russians, or also on the U.S. Axis might find things a bit more interesting if Russia is bid at 50% readiness to start the game.

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IMHO, the Russians historically wouldn't have entered the War Summer of '41...I doubt that had the resources to enter the War then. The bidding system makes people push each other for the side they want<its the decider> When I play a great player the bid is 0 So why have a bid, let the Allies learn to play the Allies better or get beaten all the time till they do like I do and learn every day

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Actually, when starting this thing, I was thinking of House Rules in more of a social game application. I don't believe most House Rules are practical for competitive play. As a competitive adventure I've got no complaint with SC as a game; my only complaints involve it's being representitive of history. Massive landings in the Baltic during the winter -- units racing through Russia during those same months, that sort of thing.

If it's possible to successfully adapt them to competive play that's also interesting. Basically, to me, they're an attempt to correct areas where the game system itself is basically wrong.

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We should of been pushing Hubert more with these patches to cut some of the allowances... One just adapts to it gameplay you're right.

If LR fighters cuts you at a certian point that makes them useless. You just find another strategy. Practical and accurate<now it's a bit touchy...need several house rules to make things seem more WW2ish>

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So many area's to address, so little time. Go with the basic's:

The reason I've started pushing house rules is to eliminate gamey moves and push the game into a more historical path while at the same time keeping play balance giving a more diverse strategic options (I feel that the allies have only one 'best' plan and to go any other way is a very bad idea). This is not easy and might not be realist with the present system. I do not want to see HR to control HR to control HR. If this can't be done with 2-4 easy to understand and evenly balanced HRs then its not worth doing.

And now people want to address things with more layers of house rules. Pretty soon it's going to look like a Rube Goldberg contraption!
Don't want this.

You guys should try some games where Russian readiness is increased by lets say 10 points. It's quite interesting how it plays out.

Ten is not enough to matter. I've found that 20 works well, in this system:

1) Game started with a 'free' DOW on Denmark

2) Russian Readness is incressed 20 %, total 50%

3) USA is left at 0 (normally would be at 8 % after the DOW on Denmark)

Actually, when starting this thing, I was thinking of House Rules in more of a social game application.
My thoughts exactly.

[ June 24, 2003, 10:12 AM: Message edited by: Iron Ranger ]

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Three strategic area's I'm trying to 'force' down a different path. I'm not address tactical issues here (over powering air was listed above).

1) Axis wipe out every minor and still keep Russia out until Dec 1940 (the cookie cutter plan that has only one counter by the allies causing the game to follow the same lines every time. Play 5 hours and determine the winner in 2-3 air battles over W. France and S. England).

2) Axis controlling when the Siberian Transfer triggers. I understand why it was done the present way but just don't agree that the Russian's would have NO control of when these troops arrive.

3) The ease that the allies can conduct operation Round-up. This is due to the starting 4 armys USA gets (to prevent an easy invasion of the eastern sea coast) and the FF units that get pulled out of France (2-5 units normally).

One and Two are bound together and Three only gets worse when you adjust One or Two.


1) Elimiate FF units (not HR, change in the option screen)

2) Denmark and Canada start war activated

3) USA readness stays at 0 - Russian goes up 20% (you MUST read Terif & My notes on how to keep the Russian Readness down otherwise this will kill you)

4) The Canadian units are moved to Egypt and adjusted to str '1'. Renamed to represent the 4th army from India and Anzoc Corp from Down Under. Regular UK units replace the Canadian units.

5) Standard Nonseaborn invasion HR

6) Russia starts with L2 HT, German HQs start L1 Exp. (?)

7) biding if the players want

This should address everything except the siberian transfer and only contains one house rule. The Germans will really be put to the test and USA is still left with a ready to go invasion group.

I would be interested in PBEM this senerio AND adding the two other house rules

1) hard date for the ST

2) USA cash its first 4 armys (assuming not invasion fleet on the shore line)

I don't know - I'm open to suggestions or maybe I'm following the wrong line and sould reread JJ's list of control dates.

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