Friday, 3 June 2011

Risky Business

Last night Mrs H, Holdenstein Jr. and I played Risk. A lot of serious gamers turn their noses up at the humble game of Risk, but I have always enjoyed it, right from being a young 'un myself. What's not to love. You get to take over the world, rub your family's noses in it, roll loads of dice and improve your Geography (cf. Pandemic).
To be slightly serious, I have always found the defender and attacker dice to be wonderfully balanced, allowing large armies to usually take out small armies easily, but throwing the odd spanner in the works occasionally. For those not familiar you roll as many dice as you have armies, with the defender being capped at 2 and the attacker at 3. You then compare the highest dice (and then next highest if both players rolled at least 2 dice) to each other and whoever wins destroys one of their opponents armies, with defender winning ties. If you think that you've seen it before, or since, its the basis for the combat systems in Space Hulk, Lord of the Rings and a bunch of other games too, but Risk takes into account the second die. The genius of the game is in the title: Risk. You've got to know exactly when to push it and when to end your turn and let someone else overreach themselves.
Holdenstein jr. won this one due to the twin effects of me and Mrs. H tearing lumps out of each other and then going for it with his big turn and capturing the two continents that he needed to complete his mission (despite Mrs. H confusing Asia and North America because "the map was upside down").

1 comment:

  1. Ah, the classic game of Risk, such a beautiful game. You are right to say that gamers turn their nose up at it, which is an odd thing. I have brought my copy to the Leeds Night Owls on many occasions and each time obnly had a few people show interest.

    I think as it is a family game people see it as a game for children, I remember playing it when I was about 7. It is a good entry level game into what I refer to as serious Boardgames, glad everyone had fun.