Oneyed, you seem to want some starting positions. Right now, you have nine territs that can directly attack either of the two capitals. 4 for Brat
and 4 for Pra
. Lets see if this can be done to make the game any better. Remember, that is what this is about, making the gaming experience better for the players.
I think you are right, n4 for the capitals is high enough to discourage most players going after them in early rounds.
I have not run the odds for any game size, but to me, any percentage of games in which a player could get either all of the 5 or 4 respectively are so small, it may only happen once in ten years. So will starting positions make this game better? Right now, the drop as it is, random, I am only going to get 10 in a 2 player game. Thats 10 for me, 10 for you, and 10 neutrals. The chance of either of us getting a drop good enough to be able to clear out an area in the first round to be able to go for the capitals is remote. It becomes even harder in larger games.
But why go for a capital in the first place. It is a 4 neutral, one more than the others so it is going to be ignored by me as why take a capital when I can attack one of yours. This is going to be the reaction of most players.
The long and the short of it is this, positions, will do nothing for the small or large games at all. It will be a detriment to fog games as I know where you are. It will destroy the large games completely as every player will get one of there 3 near a capital. Team games will be destroyed as in doubles, my team can hit yours and most likely knock you out by the end of round 2.
Let the drop be the drop and sod the positions. It will add nothing to this map at all. It is the same as the conditional border, something to think about but not always wise to add. Hope this makes sense as I had dinner half way through posting this.