Date: 1994-02-09
From: Paul
Subject: RE: Tape Turnaround

Tape received and on its way back to Alameda...

I ran out of tape before finishing all my Alexander notes. Of particular concern: I don't fully understand your "pieces per cell" proposal. Is it something like this:

Land, including cities: 9 pieces/cell max
Sea: 1 piece/cell max
Air: 4 pieces/cell max

I'm guessing that you envision two or three geometric planes for each cell location so that, for example, a sea cell could have 1 ship and 4 planes overhead (right?). Could a city have 9 armies plus 4 fighters overhead? Would the fighters then not be able to refuel until one army left? Would a bomber carrying a bomb be one air piece or two? Would a ship in a city count against the sea limit - thus, only one ship per city - or against the land limit? Or would we distinguish between "docked" and "undocked" ships (I like this idea. Docked ships are vulnerable; undocked ships protect the city but don't gain repair points)?

Oops! Already I see I've got things down wrong, somehow. I guess your second rule is more like:

Sea: 1 sea piece + 8 attached land pieces/cell max

By extension, then, the third rule might be:

Air: 4 air pieces + 4 or 5 attached "land" pieces

So a sea cell could actually have a transport, 8 troops aboard, and 4 fighters overhead. I suppose the topmost piece in each geometric plane would always be visible to adjacent enemies - or would it? This gets confusing...

Also, I see I've forgotten about subs. Do they force the possibility of a fourth - undersea - geometric plane? We would limit this to 1 piece/cell, but here's an unconnected thought: how about allowing engineers, say, to be transported by sub?

Subs could be undersea: powerful, invisible; sea-level: weak, visible, able to attack air and land targets, maybe necessary near entering and exiting ports, necessary picking up and dropping off engineers; in-city: very weak, visible.

Enough rambling. Have your thoughts gelled enough to provide a master description of how these things might fit together?

Another slow day at work,