Risk 2210 AD
by The Beast!
(Boardgame Beast HQ)
Risk 2210 AD
Board game manufacturer:
Number of players:
Risk 2210 AD is a fascinating variation on the classic strategy game. Set in a militarized dystopian future, the game expands the world map to include sea and lunar territories, adds numerous tactical cards in addition to the familiar territory cards and limits the whole epic battle for world supremacy to just five turns (which can stretch over hours). All in all this game is a real treat for those who love to strategize and scheme.
The game and gameplay
The core of Risk 2210 AD remains similar to the classic Risk board game. Players still take turns trading in cards, purchasing and placing armies, attacking and capturing territories, and receiving rewards based on specific actions.
The goal, typically, is to have the greatest amount of wealth, in the form of energy credits earned throughout battle, at the end of turn five. Holding all of a given continent, group of sea territories, or an area of the moon still gives you bonus units. Sets of cards can still be traded in for more armies.
What’s most different in the limited-turn format introduced here is the speed at which combat moves – and then moves again – in this high-tech world. Play consists of standard attack and defend rolls, but tactical cards, which can add to your power or force an opponent into certain actions, can be played by either side.The technology of the future allows reinforcements to arrive mid-turn, making territory gains less permanent and power much less clear. The result is combat far less linear than in the original version.
Additional territories off coastlines (New York apparently didn’t react well to climate change) make borders much more difficult to defend.
Likewise the double-edged sword of placing lunar launch platforms in the middle of continents makes holding territory an unassured thing. Your access to the moon is more certain, but a two-way street means opponents can potentially drop from the Sea of Tranquility to right behind your front lines.
Credits and bonus cards vastly increase the number and effect of your units at any given time. Five ‘commander’ figures for each player provide additional attack and defence bonuses, depending on the situation and territories involved. Endgames can also vary depending on cards, credits and more, so the person with the most land, or even the most credits, at the end of turn five may not come out on top.Pros and cons
All together these gameplay variations put a premium on thinking creatively and critically at the same time. Decisions as to when to spend resources are much less clear than in classic Risk, since an opponent hording cards or credits could potentially amass incredible power right before turn four or five and leave you with nothing.
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But at the same time, holding out too long to spend credits or to cash in cards can limit your potential for future gains, since some actions can only occur after pre-conditions, such as building the launch platform or bringing on a commander, are met.
While the older version’s strategy relied largely on “seeing the whole board”, Risk 2210 AD is best played by those who see the board, the cards in their hand, the cards already played, the credits in everyone’s piles, the costs of upgrades and their and their opponent’s potential for territorial and credit gains this turn and at least next. In short, chess, but with nuclear weapons, diplomatic backstabbing and Tokyo under water.
Lest this all sound too confusing, be assured that a thorough review of the game manual will have you planning global domination with ease.
However, the rules and strategies are quite different from classic Risk, meaning new players will have to learn quite a bit before they can join in the fray. This is perhaps Risk 2210AD’s greatest barrier: the first time you and friends open the box, be prepared to spend well over an hour learning the new game mechanics, let alone familiarizing yourself with the myriad of bonuses and upgrades available to you throughout the game.
One great benefit of buying this set is that the territories, armies and cards can be used to play the classic version of Risk (with some variations in names of course). One box, therefore, provides two great games!
A typical game probably takes from about an hour and a half (for two experienced players) on up. It’s best for ages 12 and up due mostly to the complexity of rules and strategy involved.
Risk 2210 AD is a big step up from the original. But if you’re tired of the simplicity of the classic Risk board game and want a meatier challenge, 2210 AD is the key to the future of your Risk enjoyment.