RISK Godstorm Game Review
Review by Albert Bassili
(Independent Game Reviewer)
Risk Godstorm is another variation of the classic Risk game. There’are lots of other Risk board game variations out there, especially in the Risk online gaming world, but very few which bring the pantheon aspect as RISK Godstorm. Released in 2002 by Avalon Hill, Risk Godstorm brings in a cart load of new features, including a secondary board and timed gameplay. Your ultimate goal is to have the highest points when the clock strikes zero, or more technically when the round counter reaches 5.
Overview of RISK: Godstorm
One of the biggest new mechanics in this Risk game variation is how troop death is handled. Instead of being completely removed from the game board, they are instead taken to heaven, which is represented by a second and much smaller board. Each civilization has its own area in the heaven, which is great because that means that you can attack and take over each other’s territories.
Not only that, but the heaven game board has special crypts which, if you hold them, allows you to resurrect troops from the secondary board to the main board. Alongside the crypts, there are alters which give you an extra die to roll during a special phase of battle called Godswar. So really, you want some of your troops to die so that they can head over to the underworld and start conquering.
So what is this mysterious Godswar that we mentioned? Well, there are four gods that you can call to your army and control, and these act as modifiers to the mechanics of the game. For example, the god of war allows you to win any tie in dice rolls, whereas the god of death forces any troops lost in battle to go directly to the player’s pool, rather than heaven. So really, having a god on your site is pretty helpful.
Of course, their passive abilities aren’t the only thing that affects the mechanics of playing RISK Godstorm, as each god can also draw from a set of miracle cards unique to each of them. To draw a card, certain requirements must be met, such as killing another god, or rolling the same numbers three times. Each card has some kind of game changing effect, rather than a battle specific one, so they can be offensive, defensive or a mix of both.
Since there are gods involved, whenever a battle comes up, they have to be the first ones who fight. The way it works is that both players roll a dice, and then sum the value, add the total number of units and the player with the highest total wins. It’s both complicated and straightforward, but hey, whoever wins gets to kick the other player’s god out, and once one side doesn’t have any left, the battle goes on as normal.
Bringing On The Storm!
So here’s the rub: unlike the classic Risk game, in Risk Godstorm there’s no domination victory, but instead, the game is played over five turns, and whoever has the most points at the end wins. At the begging of each turn, players bid the in-game currency, faith, to see who actually gets to go first, a very important strategic advantage. Whoever bids the most gets to go first, and then in descending order from next highest bid to lowest.
Once the turn order is decided, players receive whatever faith they are owed, and are allowed to deploy troops to their respective territories. Once done, players get to play out their strategy by attacking territories, buying a temple which gives extra units and the ability to reroll one die in defense, buy a magic card, or use a magic card. There’s quite a lot to consider, especially when taking into account the in-game currency and other mechanics.
CHECK OUT RISK GODSTORM STRATEGY GUIDE
Of course, there’s always a spanner being thrown into the works, and in this case, it’s plague markers. If your army is on a tile with a plague marker, your army must lose half its units. Luckily that’s rounded down, not up!
Finally, it would be a good point to talk about the RISK Godstorm game map, which covers Europe and North Africa. Of course, there’s the typical fair of mountains which block access, as well as the water tiles that you have to contend with. There’s also a territory called Atlantis, which can be ‘sunk’ using a special magic card that the god of death has.
Covering these territories are five civilizations you can pick from Babylonians, Celts, Egyptians, Greeks and the Norse, all of which are of the ancient variety. So really, you can just pretend you’re all rulers of empires and do a bit of roleplaying, which is probably what you’d do in a normal Risk game anyway.
Final Thoughts on RISK Godstorm
While this isn’t the typical fair you would find in the classic Risk game domination, there’s lots of fun to be had. The gods and buildings that are layered on top of the original Risk game mechanics add an interesting twist and whole new way to play a game of Risk. The time factor of having only 5 turns to win adds the pressure, and gives the game a much faster pace and dynamic, as opposed to the traditional risk game that can be played over several hours.
If you aren’t a fan of Risk game franchise tie-ins, but want to add a bit of new stuff to your Risk gameplay, then Risk Godstorm should be up your alley. Otherwise, you can always enjoy the many variation of playing Risk online here at Major Command. 🙂
END OF REVIEW
Some people ask about prices, so I’ve added a link to Amazon.
This one is a lot cheaper than the $500 price tag for RISK: Black Ops!