Overall Rating: 9/10
GLAM Age Range: 13-Adult
Number of Players: 2-5
Playing Time: 8-20 min
Publisher: Red Raven Games
Available At: Amazon.com
Quick Take: If you loved the concept of Risk but don't feel like sitting down for two hours to play a game, this is your more strategic and speedy alternative. It's so simple to learn the basics of how to play but no game is ever the same and it works just as well with two players as five. I like that you aren't at the mercy of the dice in this game (as you are in Risk), instead you select the cards you wish to play with as the game moves along. We've never finished a game in eight minutes, we were closer to fifteen or twenty minutes each time we played. But it's still short enough that there's plenty of time for a rematch if you want. Such a great game, we're big fans!
How to Play: Your goal is to end the game with the most points. There are several ways to earn points: through the cards you select each turn, the territories you control, and the continents you control. Each turn, six cards are lined up at the top of the board. The first is free, the next two cost one coin each, the two after that each cost two, and the final one costs three. You are given a certain amount of coins at the beginning of each game which you must allocate throughout the entire game in selecting and purchasing one card per turn. Once you have selected your card, you may perform the action at the bottom of the card. You may add more armies, move armies across land, move armies across water, or build a city. With four players, the game ends when each player has acquired eight cards each. At this point you tally up your points and see who has the most. Generally the point spread is not very big so it's a close call at the end to see who is the winner.
Variations: The board is two-sided and is slightly different on each side, which changes your strategy a bit when you play and is a really nice and easy way to vary up game play. They have a few variations listed in the official rules including playing for the most points after three games (which we never do) or playing with a random goods token placed on triangle spaces on the board. The first person to place an army on the space with the goods token adds the token to their hand. We like this rule and generally add it in to game play.