Ever since seeing the game in a case at Gen Con SoCal, I’ve been curious about WotC’s impending board game release, Risk: Godstorm. Today’s press release (below) adds fuel to my curiosity. Players seem to take on the role of one of four ancient civilizations, and start conquering the world using tools such as miracle cards, faith tokens, and temples. As the name Godstorm implies, the gods of ancient myth get involved this go round (gods of magic, death, sky, and war are mentioned), though it’s still unclear if each player uses each god once, or some other arrangement takes place. Apparently Atlantis exists as a temporary resource for the players, then sinks like a stone at some point during gameplay. All in all, I might be more enthused by this Risk version than I was by the original. We’ll see how it looks in a few months.
Wizards of the Coast press release follows:
RISK GODSTORM COMING THIS SUMMER
Battle with the gods for control of the ancient world!
March 2, 2004 (RENTON, Wash.) — Are you prepared to face the gods of ancient mythology in battle? This July, board game players everywhere will get the chance to deliver ancient Earth and the mythological underworld from the hands of the enemy. RISK GODSTORM, a new game from Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc. (NYSE: HAS), offers players the opportunity to pit men and gods against each other in a war of shifting alliances and magical powers. Designed to appeal to everyone from board gaming hobbyists to mythology buffs to those who enjoy the classic strategy game of RISK, RISK GODSTORM features exciting game play while evoking the mystery and lure of the ancient world.
A game of RISK GODSTORM begins with soldiers and elephants representing a range of eastern and western mythologies: Norse, Greek, Celtic, Egyptian and Babylonian. Players can also use four gods — Magic, Death, Sky and War, each of which wield supernatural forces that can help in this game of earthly domination. Richly detailed game pieces, including miracle cards, faith tokens, territory cards and temples help guide game play. The not-yet-lost continent of Atlantis offers a special strategic opportunity, as the continent and all its occupying forces can be wiped out with the draw of a single card. RISK GODSTORM contains a lavishly illustrated, full-color board of a map of the ancient Earth and a secondary board of the mythological underworld. ($45.00 MSRP)
Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc. (NYSE:HAS), is a worldwide leader in the trading card game and tabletop roleplaying game categories, and a leading developer and publisher of game-based entertainment products. The company holds an exclusive patent on trading card games (TCGs) and their method of play and produces the premier trading card game, Magic: The Gathering®, among many other trading card games and family card and board games. Wizards is also a leading publisher of roleplaying games, such as Dungeons & Dragons®, and publisher of fantasy series fiction with numerous New York Times best-sellers. For more information, visit the Wizards of the Coast website at wizards.com
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Risk is a trademark of Hasbro, Inc. Used with permission. Risk Godstorm is manufactured and distributed by Wizards of the Coast, Inc. Magic: The Gathering and Dungeons & Dragons are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast in the U.S.A and other countries. © 2004 Wizards.
With all the great AH stuff they could be revising, why are we seeing Yet Another Risk?
Because that’s what sells, and Wizards of the Coast is likely fighting for its life within Hasbro right now. Anyway, how do you know this is Yet Another Risk? It might be a very different game that happens to have the Risk name slapped on it to boost sales. Which would, in fact, not be a bad strategy for reprinting some of that great AH stuff.
I have never played RISK. I have played the original STRATEGO, but not the new multiple versions coming out of AH/WotC. What is the popularity behind RISK, even though it is not really DIPLOMACY?
Risk is popular because it’s Wargaming For Tots. It is perhaps the simplest thing possible that looks and feels even remotely like a global conquest game. Diplomacy is extremely rich, elegant, and subtle; Risk is full of luck. Hardcore gamers hate luck in their strategy games, but everyone else seems to like it. The other reason Risk is popular is, well, because it’s popular; it got into the culture early enough that it managed to stick in the mind of a conventional wisdom that believes all the good games have already been made.
AH’s other Risk reworking, Risk 2210, is quite fun if you don’t mind luck, and if you don’t mind playing a light game. Godstorm looks to be along similar lines, and I’m probably going to buy a copy when it’s released.
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