I *hit up several of my closest “friends” to see if they’d like to play A Game of Thrones: The Board Game to celebrate my birthday. Instead, they suggested that we play Risk Legacy on a different day in celebration of someone else’s birthday. In fact, we’d play the day after my birthday. (Yes, I have the worst friends). Needless to say, I was very upset, but still decided to go along with it not knowing at all what I was getting into. I’m glad I did because Risk Legacy is the most fun I have had with a board game in a verrrrrrry long time.
To the uninitiated, Risk Legacy is a game where each previous game permanently affects future games in often unanticipated ways. It actually takes a total of 16 games to complete the game and declare the final winner. The first few games start out as basically normal Risk. After a few games, certain events trigger game changing actions that modify the map and change the rules of the game. In fact, no 2 games will be the same. You really want to play this without “spoiling” what these changes will be because it is more fun that way. That said, once we are finished, we will probably buy a new board and restart.
Alliances In many board games, players team up to take down another player. You see this in normal Risk all the time. It usually goes something like “OK you don’t attack me for 2 turns, and I won’t attack you. Deal?". Inevtiably, these alliances tend to break down toward the end of the game when one player breaks the alliances and screws their ally resulting in anger and hurt feelings. Risk Legacy takes alliances to a whole new level in that they often span multiple games. For instance, I made an alliance with another player (Punk Tim) to win-trade. This resulted in him winning the next game and me winning the game after that.
Risk Legacy is the kind of game where, after playing, you go home and immediately start planning your next game. In fact, some games you have to plan on losing. Why? Well, being in the lead paints a giant target on your back. I know this because I’ve been in the lead for so long.
Alright, lets talk about the people I’m playing with. I won’t use their full names for privacy reasons (except Chris because he’s a blue checkmark verified Twitter user). Our series of games consists of the five following players ranked in order of what I consider to be best to worst:
- Dan Dersch (me)
- Punk Tim
- Chris “Fake News” Pandolfo (my nemesis)
- “Bad Luck” Briley
- Phil the Shill
Dan (Me) I consider myself to be the best player in the series because I was the first to reach 3 wins. In fact, I reached 3 wins before Chris and Briley even got 2 wins. The other players joke that my wins were “given to me”, but actually I took them by force with incredibly brilliant plays. In my third win, I punished a critical error made by Phil that resulted in my win. I’m not biased.
Punk Tim tried to create this righteous persona of himself as a trustworthy man who never breaks his word and won’t possibly ever screw you over. In fact, he even chose not to win Game #2 and instead let someone else win because of an alliance/deal he had made. It’s all blatant bullshit and virtue signaling though. Our final game is coming up, and he’s been saving every ounce of his treacherous heart for it.
Chris “Fake News” Pandolfo is the exact opposite of Tim. He will try to make deals with you, but you know for sure that he will always break them if he can benefit. This isn’t surprising for someone that spends all day every day writing fake news. The guy has no friends and could never make alliances with anyone no matter how much he pleaded. I always made sure to screw over Chris every chance I got in every game I played (even eliminating him several times).
“Bad Luck” Briley This poor kid has so much bad luck with his dice rolls. If it was not for that, he would likely be ranked above Chris. Unfortunately, he falls low on this ranking due to having 2 of his wins “handed to him” by the other players.
Phil the Shill is the perfect pawn. If you can get him to do your bidding, then you have a very good chance of winning the game. The guy gets suckered into lopsided deals that barely benefit him and instead benefit one of the stronger players. The flipside is that unless you make Phil your pawn, there is no reasoning with him. You can have the best reasons in the world for him helping you, and he will just laugh at you. That being said, Phil was the first player to get 2 wins. I don’t remember the precise reasons why we won his second game, but I choose to believe it was because of luck.
The State of Things
Currently, each player has 3 wins. The next game determines who the ultimate winner will be (hopefully me). If I do end up winning, you can expect a follow-up post detailing my victory. Realistically though, it could be a while before we are able to play our final game.
Honestly, no matter the result, I think I will be able to accept it. I spent most of the games as “public enemy #1” or “the guy to beat”, so maybe that will be good enough for me.
Thanks for reading my thoughts.
* Do people still say hit up?