Board Games

NOTICES

To everyone who voted for Chancellorsville: 1863 in the American Civil War category in the Charles S. Roberts Awards 2020 (announced 2021) – thank you.

  • I am working on revised rules for Freeman’s Farm: 1777.
  • I am also working on minor tweaks for a reprint of Chancellorsville: 1863.
  • I am testing a easy difficulty setting for solo play of Hidden Strike: American Civil War.

IN DEVELOPMENT

  • Crisis: 1914, Worthington Publishing (forthcoming) – Game Designer

This is a 1-5 player game about trying to stop World War One from happening. All art work and game assets are prototype quality only.

The board depicts an abstracted representation of Europe during the crisis of July 1914. There are 6 major cities (Vienna, St. Petersburg, Berlin, Paris, Rome, and London), as well as minor cities (Belgrade, Bucharest, Sofia, Athens, Constantinople), as the game terms them, and other movement spaces (Warsaw, Kiev, and the North Sea). The lines connecting spaces show what movement is permitted between them. For example: if in Berlin, a player’s diplomat pawn may spend one action point to move to either Warsaw, Vienna, Paris, or the North Sea.

The board also includes various tracks, pools for pieces, and spaces for card decks.

How to Win

If not playing solitaire, players win together or lose together.

The game’s points, tracked on the red dice, and red cubes, are called TENSION. The players’ points, tracked on the white dice, are called DIPLOMATIC PRESSURE.

The six countries, AUSTRIA-HUNGARY, RUSSIA, GERMANY, FRANCE, ITALY, and BRITAIN are termed ‘major powers’. Their corresponding capital cities are Vienna, St. Petersburg, Berlin, Paris, Rome, and London, respectively.

To win the game, players must get Austria-Hungary, Russia, Germany, AND France all to ‘STAND DOWN’ – to pull back from the brink of war and give some commitment to peace.

To get a major power to stand down players must have at least 6 points of Diplomatic Pressure in a corresponding capital city, AND be at least 2 points clear of any Tension. (You may choose to think of this as rather like the way a set is won in a game of tennis.) When a nation Stands Down it doesn’t mean this power cannot mobilize at a later point (see Tension Not Contained By Secret Conversations and/or Standing Down below), the situation is still volatile, but it is good progress towards winning the game.

If any of Austria-Hungary, Russia, Germany, OR France mobilizes, the war cannot be localized and the domino effect of mobilizations and counter-mobilizations will trigger as it did in history, and the game is lost. If Italy and/or Britain mobilize the situation will become harder to contain, but the game is not necessarily lost.

A major power will mobilize if its capital city reaches 6+ Tension, tracked on the red die in its space, and is also 2 Tension points clear of the players’ Diplomatic Pressure total. 

If players haven’t won by the end of the calendar track (August 4) the crisis will continue to worsen, a world war will break loose, and the game is lost.

Quick Rules

To Win

  • To win, players must get Vienna, St.Petersburg, Berlin, AND Paris to a total of 6+ points on the white dice AND at least 2 points ahead of the red dice. This is called Standing Down. This is an automatic win. If not achieved before the calendar track runs out all players lose.
  • If Vienna, St.Petersburg, Berlin, OR Paris reach a total of 6+ points on the red dice AND at least 2 points ahead of the white dice, their respective nations Mobilize. If any of these four countries Mobilize the game is lost. 
  • The first dice to a total of 12 in a city resolves that city, either Mobilization or Standing Down.

Turn Sequence

Each turn each player performs the same series of steps to complete a turn.

  • Calendar
    • Move red marker on the calendar track. (Ignore on the first turn.)
    • Move blue marker on the calendar track in tandem with the red marker, if French Diplomatic Mission leaves. Apply a Penalty Marker to Paris and St.Petersburg as marker progresses.
  • Government Response
    • Draw from Secret Conversations deck if a weekend, or if a weekday and an assassination previous day. Place points on gray dice in cities as instructed.
      • Automatic Transfer of Tension: If gray die reaches 6, remove die and add 2 points to red die in same city.
    • Draw Weekday deck if weekday, and no assassination preceding day. Place points on red dice in cities as instructed. If gray dice present, place points on gray dice instead of red dice. There are exceptions:
      • Is It War? cards, Tension is ALWAYS placed on red dice.
      • Unable to add a Tension cube in a minor city. Tension ALWAYS placed on red dice, regardless of Standing Down. (+1 Tension to Berlin if city is Constantinople; +1 Tension to Vienna if it is any other city.)
      • Italian Mobilization. Tension ALWAYS placed on red dice, regardless of Standing Down. (+3 Tension to Vienna; +3 Tension to Paris.)
      • British Mobilization. Tension ALWAYS placed on red dice, regardless of Standing Down. (+4 Tension to Berlin; +2 Tension to Paris.)
  • Player Actions
    • 3 actions.
  • Optionally Purchase Diplomatic Pouch card or Refresh Tableau
    • No hand limit on Diplomatic Pouch cards
  • Reveal Top of Trigger Deck
  • Refill Hand from Action Deck
    • 3 Action cards maximum

IN DEVELOPMENT

  • Malta: 1565 Worthington Publishing (forthcoming) – Game Designer
SoM+Box+Cover+%282%29.jpg

PUBLISHED

  • Hidden Strike: American Revolution, Worthington Publishing (forthcoming) – Co-designer: Dorian Richard

PUBLISHED

  • Chancellorsville: 1863, Worthington Publishing (2020) – Game Designer (Winner of Charles S. Roberts Award in American Civil War Category, 2020.
Click image for Board Game Geek link.

PUBLISHED

  • Freeman’s Farm: 1777, Worthington Publishing (2019) – Game Designer (Nominated for Charles S. Roberts Award in Early Gunpowder Category, 2019.)
3d box and board.jpg
Click image for Board Game Geek link.