Risk: Godstorm

RISK Godstorm Game Review

Review by Albert Bassili
(Independent Game Reviewer)

Risk Godstorm Box Cover

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

Risk Godstorm Game Pieces

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.

Risk Godstorm Staregy Guide

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!


Risk Godstorm cards

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.


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

Risk Godstorm Complete Set

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. 🙂


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!


Risk Factions – Video Game

Risk Factions

Review by Sonny Go
(Independent Game Reviewer)


Risk Factions – Now we are all familiar with playing Risk online using a computer, but if you ever do see a video game console version of a board game, it’s usually in a way that doesn’t account for bridging the gap between the mechanical differences between the two media, and how it accounts for multiplayer gameplay. Translating a video game into a tabletop game is something that tends to happen from time to time, with various tabletop versions of popular video games coming out seemingly in droves, but this is the other way around.

From role-playing games to strategy games and so on, there seems to be a collection of crossovers that flood the tabletop games market quite a bit. However, when it comes to the other way around, there doesn’t seem to be enough out there to really be substantial. But with Risk: Factions, much of that has been ironed out and more, making Risk reach an even bigger audience.




Risk Factions is a translation of the classic Risk board game into video game console format, namely the Xbox Live Arcade service which was discontinued in 2014, and the PlayStation 3’s Network. It was also a reinterpretation to make it friendlier to a wider demographic. Unlike the classic Risk video game, the presentation isn’t as dry and there’s actually much to dig into other than the usual elements in classic Risk. There have been a few other Risk video games out there, but this one some attention for being different from the rest.

Being able to play Risk online with other players is what gives Risk Factions a big advantage over the classic Risk video game. You get to hone your strategic sense against other human players who are playing from other parts of the world with little to no worry about lag. You need not wait for friends to come over in order to play a game of Risk anymore, although this does have its vast differences from the classic Risk board game and it is not as versatile as playing Risk online at a proper gaming website like MajorCommand.com.

Gameplay and Rules


There are different single players modes like skirmish battles against computer opponents and a campaign for players to progress through, although the latter isn’t long enough to be really substantial. On the other hand, it may be enough for players to get into the stuff that makes this particular Risk game unique from the others, from its unique setting and cartoon art style to the different factions that comprise its backstory and gameplay.

Instead of the same units for all players like with most other Risk games, Risk Factions stays true to its name and gives players different factions that both look and play differently, giving this game a surprising bit of depth. You also get other nice things in the overall presentation that a video game can have over a board game like nice background music and voices for the different characters in the game, which adds to the experience here.

Each game has three main objectives that must be achieved in order to get a lot closer to victory because only having to take control of everything can be rather bland and every other Risk game already has that. There are various other Risk games out there with their own objective-based gameplay as well, so this is nothing new.

The Factions


There are four factions to choose from—Humans, Cats, Robots, Zombies, and Yeti. There’s a leader for each whose personality and unique abilities dictate the theme and capabilities of their respective factions.

The Humans have General William P. “Fatty” McGutterpants, a military type that likes to shout orders and stick his chin up at every chance he gets. The Cats have Generalissimo Meow, a communist leader with a penchant for revolutions and a hatred for General Fatty’s dog.

The Robots have Commandant SixFour, an artificial intelligence that’s like a science fiction nightmare due to its inability to tell ally from enemy. The Zombies have Colonel Clause “Stiffy” Von Stauffenberg, who is a result of Commandant SixFour’s weapon experiments gone wrong and looks like someone General Fatty would love to bomb out of the water.

The Yeti have the noble savage that is His Excellency Gary, who is like a monster version of the Dalai Lama that seeks to be neutral by fighting everyone else until they all give up and make peace, which may not be the best plan out there.

All these factions have their distinct strengths and weaknesses, and figuring out what strategies and play styles work for them makes up most of the fun in Risk Factions. If you have friends to play it with you, the better it becomes as you try to outdo each other with your chosen factions.



This isn’t one of those decisions that become a source of regret for both the designer and the players as Risk Factions is indeed a good addition to the Risk library. It plays well enough and helps introduce a whole new audience to the tabletop gaming wonder that is Risk. It doesn’t have the variety of playing an online Risk game, but overall, this is a decent addition to any gaming console collection.

Hey, It’s Only a Game

“Hey, It’s Only a Game”… or is it?

by Redstorm
(Major Command Risk Game Player and Blog Contributor)

family playing only a game

Only a game… Many of us fondly remember those long hours spent playing those wonderful board games as a child. Sure, there were moments when we went savage about who gets what color or marker and most assuredly someone always probably cheated somehow. But we learned things as we played like cooperation, sharing, and sportsmanship. We also felt the thrill of winning and the crush of defeat. Most likely it was then that we first heard someone, probably Dad, say “hey, it’s only a game“.

Who doesn’t remember those young adult years spent chasing wine, women and song while really anticipating the next 27-hour board game marathon where the levels of testosterone were matched only by the mountainous pile of empty beer cans? All the while we were learning about comradery, establishing friendships, often for a lifetime, as we mostly stumbled our way to responsible adulthood. Meh, pass me a cold one since ‘hey, it’s only a game“.

As jobs became careers, girlfriends became wives and children followed seemingly too soon, we often lacked any spare time and struggled to keep the boat steady and on the course. Somehow we and the kids managed to play a few games even as the board games morphed into an ever-changing digital mystery to us. Did we give enough of ourselves? Sadly, after too many excuses, we all heard “it’s ok, Daddy”, “hey, it’s only a game”.

computer game

Comes to the worldwide networks gushing an explosion of connected and online goodness. For the aging gamer, it appears as manna from heaven. Once again discovering the games of our youth while meeting people from all over the Earth on sites like the awesome MAJORCOMMAND.COM all while sitting in our most comfy chair. Total bliss? hmmm. My adorable grandson asked me just the other day, “Papa, why you yelling at your ‘puter?”. Slightly embarrassed, I realized that after all these years I could still learn about myself and my dealings with those around me. Laughing in the way young children do, I can just imagine him saying “Papa”, “hey, it’s only a game“.

Risk: Star Wars 2015 Edition

Risk: Star Wars 2015 Edition

Review by Nikola Brankovic
(Independent Game Reviewer)

RISK Star Wars 2015 - Box-K150

Star Wars Risk 2015 – I sure hope you’re in the mood for something fun, because we’ve discovered Hasbro has released a board game to complement their release of the latest Star Wars movie. In the hype for the movie itself I missed the board game, but a friend pointed it out to me, so it’s time to have a look at it and see if it’s any good.

First of all, there are two editions of Risk Star Wars on the market. Well, actually three if you consider the Star Wars Original Trilogy Edition which we reviewed a couple months ago. But right now we’re strictly speaking about the Star Wars 2015 edition in this article, and there are two variants. There is the regular pack, and the Black Edition. The difference between the two is the box art, as well as some of the miniatures – capital ships, death star and Millennium Falcon, are cardboard cutouts in the regular version, while they are detailed miniatures in Black Edition. The game rules are a bit more detailed and refined in Black Edition as well, avoiding some potential confusion (although you can find the rules online).

RISK Star Wars 2015 - Full Set-K150

Let’s start with the box art. The main box boasts Kylo Ren in the corner, but that’s a marketing ploy that obscures the fact that the game is actually set in Return of the Jedi, you’re re-creating the Battle of Endor and the dogfight that finalizes with the destruction of Death Star. The game map itself is divided into neat sub-sections that represent each part of the fight for the Death Star. Its X-Wing shape represents the parts of the battle, with wings being their separate fights and center part being the space fight around the Death Star.

The game is designed for two players, although it can be played in two teams. The Rebellion and the Empire clash off around the Death Star, with Empire trying to wipe out the attacking fleet and the rebels trying to bring down the Death Star shields before blowing it up. The winning condition seems simple enough.

Center – Death Star

RISK Star Wars 2015 - Center Death Star

Center part of the map is probably why the game carries “Risk” name at all, as the mechanics and the overall style of the game, have very little to do with your classic Risk. The space around Death Star is divided into sectors that you can navigate through, moving your squadrons out of the fire’s way and attacking the opponent ships. Dogfight is very simple, you use the number of dice equal to the number of the number of ships on the field you are attacking from and compare against the difficulty to destroy the defending ships – Rebels have more ships but they’re easier to destroy, while the Empire has fewer ships per squadron but are harder to defeat. The rebels must hold a space next to the Death Star when the shields go down and then roll a 6 on the attack to blow it up, while the Star itself can fire back once its shields are down and wipe out everything in the field it fires on.

Left Wing – Battle of Endor

RISK Star Wars 2015 - Left Wing

How do the shields go down? Well, that’s what the left side of the map is for. It represents the Battle of Endor, with rebels slowly climbing the progress tracker and Empire trying to slow down their progress by throwing stormtroopers in their way. The progress becomes more difficult higher the progress tracker is, but the fight is generally in favor of the Rebels (unless they roll their dice really poorly).

Right Wing – Skywalker vs Vader


RISK Star Wars 2015 - Right Wing

The right side of the map is fully optional, with objectives that can bring advantage to one side or another. It represents the fight between the Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, with them exchanging lightsaber swings and powers until one of them keels over, with an additional option of redeeming the Vader instead of flat-out killing him that brings even greater benefits.

The players take turns drawing cards which represent “orders”, each card letting you select from one of the several listed orders. For each turn, you select three of the card and select orders from them to be executed. Winning optional objectives allows for bigger card pool to select from or more orders to be executed.



risk star wars 2015 pieces

The games last for about 40 minutes to an hour, which may sound like a short time but remember, this is a 2 player game only. There’s plenty of decision making and strategizing to go around to keep you occupied for the most of the time, there were no complaints of the game growing boring. That being said, I wouldn’t call this a Risk game, and I’m really stumped as to why would they brand it as such when it could have been a pretty fun game to play on its own. It’s far from a Risk re-skin I expected when I first laid my eyes on the box, but with the different shape of the map, different goals and overall turn mechanic, only the center of the map makes this a risk game, and that’s only nominally. It’s a good game, for sure, but not a good Risk game, so if you feel like going out of your comfort zone and you’re a fan of Star Wars franchise, this is a good game to try. Otherwise, playing Risk online at Major Command is always a solid choice!



Some people ask about prices, so I’ve added a link to Amazon.
Remember to look for used versions. Some as low a $16.

Risk Junior: Narnia

Risk Junior: Narnia by Hasbro

Review by Albert Bassili
(Independent Game Reviewer)


Risk Junior: Narnia, is an interesting entry into the Risk franchise, focusing more on introducing the game Risk to children more than anything else. Released in 2006 by Hasbro, this entry gives parents and family members to introduce Risk to them in an easy a simple manner, without devolving into the complex strategy of classic Risk. Overall it’s an interesting concept, and there is the added benefit of knowing your kids won’t be exposed to the unpredictable behavior of adults who sometimes take their online Risk games too seriously.

Unfortunately, Risk Junior: Narnia, didn’t see a big release in the US, but it was big in the UK and Europe, so if you’re ever on holiday over there, keep your eyes open!

The Introduction



Now, you might not be expecting this, but Risk Junior: Narnia actually has more complex rules than classic Risk, ostensibly to remove the deep strategy and make it easier to play. For example, attacks are decided by drawing turns, and how many armies you have doesn’t matter, every player rolls either two or three dice. Winning is also based on rolling a 5 and 6, rather than having a higher number.

The game also adds a bit of a good vs evil interplay, with the forces of evil (The White Witch) which are controlled by one player, fighting against the forces of good (Aslan) which is controlled by many. Ultimately, this makes the game a 1 vs team affair, without any chance for alliances or free-for-alls, instead, you know who your enemy is and that’s that. To add to this, the map is rather small, probably one of the smallest, with several bottle necks that make the game a bit more fluid and dynamic.

Of course, this all might sound a bit strange and out there for a Risk game, but it’s an interesting concept for introducing the series to kids. Without the complex strategy, and the standardization of attacks and the map, it’s much easier for a child to grasp. Don’t worry, though, it’s still fun for adults!

Playing Narnia Risk



While there are two different sides, the troops are pretty much the same, with the main difference being that The White Witch’s forces can turn troops into stone, and Aslan’s forces can cure them. Turns are started by drawing an event card, each that has a variety of effects that aren’t too powerful, yet can alter the game slightly to the advantage of one side.

Within those event cards are three special ones: “Always Winter & Never Christmas”, “Father Christmas” and “The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe”. If one of these is drawn, the game is paused and points are awarded based on territories and camps up to that point in the game, after which the game continues as normal. “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe” is even more special than the other two, as after the points are calculated the game actually ends and whichever side has the most points wins.


Once an event card is drawn, the player must then draw a territory card which tells them where they must attack. If the territory is friendly, then the player can choose to attack any adjacent territory, otherwise, the battle ensues. The battles themselves are pretty straight forward and are proceeded by a troop placement phase.

After the territory to be attacked has been selected, and troops have been placed, the actual fighting begins. The defender rolls 2 dice and the attacker rolls 3 unless they’ve used a bridge to reach the territory, its hard work crossing a river after all! As mentioned earlier, the roll relies on either a 5 or a 6, with a 5 removing a weak minion, and a 6 removing either a strong or a weak minion.


Of course, all the numbers between 1 and 4 aren’t irrelevant, because that’s where the characters of Narnia Risk come into play. Each of these characters has a special ability that kicks in if a specific number is rolled. For example, The White Witch can freeze minions on a roll of 2, and Lucy can revive them on a 4, 5 or a 6. Doubles kick characters back to the pool, so watch out for those!

Winning Risk Junior: Narnia is either a matter of domination or being the leader in points. Given the fact that there’s a high chance to draw “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe”, it usually means that the game is going to end on seeing who has the most points. It’s a bit of a letdown in comparison to classic Risk, but hey, if you’re strong and smart enough, maybe you can get a domination win yet.

Narnia Risk – The Conclusion



The biggest problem with Risk Junior: Narnia, is that it’s quite a ways away from what seasoned Risk players might be used to. The hamstringing that the rules apply to the gameplay might be a bit frustrating for some, and yet, it will make it easier for younger gamers to play. Of course, the complexity of the rules is a bit strange, but having an experience Risk player around will help to get kids into it and understanding the ruleset.

Of course, another main point is that the game is much shorter, which if you know how kids are, is actually a good thing. The smaller map and the way the game dictates where player’s attack means you won’t be spending a lot of empty time thinking, a time where kids might get restless or lose interest. So while it may be strange overall, it’s well adapted for kids.

Overall, if you have kids and you want to introduce them to Risk without overtaxing them with the traditional game, this is a great game to pick up, and a solid entry into the franchise. Though it might not quite prepare them for the world of Risk online, it will give you and them some solid family time. 🙂