Gary Collinson reviews Game of Thrones Risk – Skirmish Edition…
If you’re looking to fill in the week between episodes of Game of Thrones season six and fancy gathering a few of your friends and family round to raise your banners and reenact the War of the Five Kings with a set of dice and a game board, then Habsro may have just the solution for you with its Song of Ice and Fire-themed Risk.
Yes, the game of strategic conquest has paired up with HBO’s epic fantasy series, and on paper it seems like a match made in heaven. Monopoly may be the more popular game, but let’s face it – you don’t lay claim to King’s Landing by handing over cash, and once you’re sitting on the Iron Throne, deciding whether you have enough cash to buy a hotel probably isn’t going to be top of your list of priorities. Strategy and manpower is how you expand – and hold on to – your territory in Westeros – there’s no going directly to jail or declaring bankruptcy here. As the saying goes, when you play the Game of Thrones, you win or you die.
It’s important to note that there are two versions of Game of Thrones Risk: the Skirmish Edition (which we’re reviewing here), and the Deluxe Edition. The latter offers an extra map (Essos), two additional armies (Targaryen and Ghiscari), objective cards, characters, and a variety of game modes, whereas the Skirmish Edition is essentially your standard Risk with a Game of Thrones skin (and a Valar Morghulis card, which brings the game to an immediate end when drawn). I’ve seen a few comments online from customers complaining that they received the Skirmish Edition when they thought they were getting the Deluxe one, so make sure you know what you are buying.
So, what do you get with The Skirmish Edition, then? Well, the board (obviously), which recreates Westeros from The Wall down, with nine regions – The North, The Riverlands, The Vale of Arryn, The Iron Islands, The Westerlands, The Crownlands, The Stormlands, The Reach and Dorce – split into 48 territories, each with their own card. On top of that you have five Houses – Stark, Baratheon, Lannister, Martell and Tyrell – each with their own sculpted pieces to represent their armies.
Now, I can’t say I’ve ever been much of a Risk player. I believe I played it twice in my younger days; both times, I wasn’t really sure what I was doing (and looking back, I don’t think anyone else at the table was either). So, I came at this as a newcomer to the game, and it was pretty easy to pick up. We were up and running in no time, strategically placing our armies, maneuvering across the board, invading territories, and pitching large scale battles, which basically means rolling dice to determine the victor.
If you’re a big fan of Risk and have been playing a version of this anyway on your home made Westeros board, then it goes without saying that this is a must buy (although you’ll probably want to invest in the Deluxe version). If, like me, your interest in this is solely down to the Game of Thrones license, then I’m sure you’ll have some fun when you dust it off now and again to put your mates to the sword in an effort to control the Seven Kingdoms.
SEE ALSO: Order Game of Thrones Risk via Amazon US or Amazon UK
Gary Collinson is a writer and lecturer from the North East of England. He is the editor-in-chief of FlickeringMyth.com and the author of Holy Franchise, Batman! Bringing the Caped Crusader to the Screen.