Whatís important when playing Blue to Win in Britannia Second Edition

(I have deliberately limited this to one page; there is one page of overall advice, as well. LEP)

Every color in Britannia must be played as a whole, not as separate nations, if you want to win consistently. It may be worth sacrificing armies or points of one nation to improve the points or position of another by a greater amount. The action of armies at one end of the board can affect those at the other, in the long run. Remember, at a given time position is just as important as the number of armies or number of points scored so far.

Blue are a lot different than in original Brit, where they were the most fragile color. Changes in Angle appearance and maximum (they can get up to 17 instead of 15) make a difference, but so do changes in Redís situation.

The Angles are the biggest point source for Blue, though often they are wiped out by the end of the game. The Picts can score a lot, and the Normans nearly as much. Pict survival is important to a good Blue score; the Angles may die in the end, but if they score a lot along the way, Blue is in good shape.

The Belgae can score over 20 with reasonable luck. They may survive longer if they donít assault the Romans during Boudiccaís rebellion, but theyíll score fewer points in the long run. One player characterized this as: "retreat whenever you can. Burn London. Die." Rarely, the Belgae survive to the end of the game.

The Picts often try to find the best position from which to submit to the Romans, then expand to areas they have left empty in Scotland. Other times they fight the Romans "tooth and nail" and (sometimes) refuse to submit. This can lead an incautious or unlucky Pict player into a bad situation, with no more (or fewer) armies than the Caledonians, a poor prospect when the Scots arrive in numbers. As the Picts will usually have to submit, it may be wiser to submit in an advantageous position.

Red and Blue can score far more than Green and Yellow. Some people see the game as Blue fighting with Yellow in the north while Green struggles with Red in the south. If Red and Blue cooperate, the other two nations are probably in trouble. But the Angles and Saxons have many incentives to fight one another, as do Angles and Brigantes. The question becomes, where is the dividing line between Red and Blue. This is an obvious situation for negotiation.

The Angles often try to force Brigante submission, in part to help the Picts. But sometimes it is not possible owing to other needs, or because of a large-scale deal made with Red.

The Normans can be the "swing" nation at the end of a close game. Do they try to kill Harold? Donít forget about Svein Estrithson.



My thanks to contributors to these short strategy pieces, in particular "the Black Prussian" (UK), Torben Mogensen (Denmark), Yann Clouet (France), and George Van Voorn (Netherlands), among others.