Liberty - Game Variants

The following variants can be used in Columbia Games' strategic American Revolution game entitled Liberty. Some of these variants effect the timing of French entry as well as the effectiveness of French forces within the game system. Enjoy!

Staggered French Entry (Variant #1)
The following variant keeps French entry random but staggers the units and compensates for hopefully even the unluckiest dice rollers out there by providing eventual entry. (changes rule 11.2)

Year Ending: Successfull 2d6 Roll is: Probability of Success is:
1776 11+ 8%
1777 9+ 28%
1778 7+ 58%
1779 5+ 72%
1780- 3+ 92%

With success, the French ships are placed in the replacement pool and then one year later, Rochambeau and the troops are placed in the pool.

This variant slows down French entry (but almost assures it which is good as they're 32% of the American-side forces!) but also softens the blow a touch when they do enter. It nudges the French closer to a historical entry timetable but still gives the British the legitimate option of pressing hard in the early years (1775-1778) for a quick automatic victory or at the very least, time to significantly diminish American troop strength before full French entry. Designed by Greg Nichols

Severe French Wintering (Highly Experimental Variant #2)
Limit the French ability to winter in North America. Historically, most French units went home and had to return the next year, thus delaying their availability. It's why they usually didn't arrive off the American coast until late summer or fall. (changes rules 11.3-11.5)

The French cannot draw winter supply from towns in North America but they can from either of the two West Indies' ports as usual. The French leader (Rochambeau) still lends leader supply. So if their leader is present (and at full strength), he can supply himself and two other units in any town (thus simulating Rochambeau and the force he kept in America from 1780-1782) but otherwise, they have to disband (if possible).

This means the American player will most likely have to draw some of the French again each year which limits the effectiveness of the French. Designed by Mark Kwasny

Nearly Historical French Entry (Variant #3)
This variant forces the French into the game during the years that are close to historical. (changes rule 11.2)

Year Ending: Successfull 1d6 Roll is: Probability of Success is:
1776 no roll 0%
1777 5+ 33%
1778 4+ 50%
1779 1+ (Automatic) 100%

By replacing the extremely random 8+ on 2d6 die roll in years 1776-1782 with this table, the game should see fewer blowouts (by either side) as a result of extremely early, very late, or even no French Entry. Designed by Greg Nichols, Jim Swift, and Martin Nelmes

Nearly Historical French (Variant #4)
Combine variants #2 and #3 and force the French to act very historically. (changes rules 11.2-11.5)

Sliding British VP Scale (Variant #5)
Gamers have witnessed a great number of American-side victories which has prompted play balance concerns. Admittedly, the British are more difficult to play well especially after the French arrive. While the American-side forces use retreats and counterattacks to stay in the game, the British must find a way to produce a final killing blow without doing themselves in at the same time. Using this variant, the British victory threshold is 30 vps BEFORE French entry and then lowers to 28 vps AFTER French entry. (changes rule 11.1)

West Indies (Highly Experimental Variant #6)
Historically, the French held the West Indies importance as high as helping the Americans defeat the British. Several times during the course of the war, the French sailed away from North America to deal with British action in the West Indies. This variant raises the importance of the West Indies to the French to a near historical level. Designed by Mark Kwasny with additional wording by Greg Nichols.

If the French lose their West Indies port to the British, they can no longer send any units to North America until they control one of the two ports again. Any French units sitting in the Atlantic box or replacement pool, after loss of their port, cannot go to North America. French units that leave North America after loss of their port, cannot return to North America until the French have retaken a West Indies port.

Post-1783 VP Tables (Highly Experimental Variant #7)
The victory conditions in Liberty are very simple. Too simple? Here's an evolving experiment at developing a finer breakdown. I'd use Variant #3 in conjunction with one of these tables. Designed by Greg Nichols.

and another one that includes a "draw" condition:

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Page Last Updated: 1/20/04