The Jaded Gamer

Opinions, not always positive, on the gaming world.
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Game 10: Twilight Struggle

Alec Chapman
United Kingdom
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Anyway, how's your sex life?
"She said the same thing about waffles."
Microbadge: Offline from The Geek for a while
And so we come to the end and an enormous admission.
I've built a loophole into my pact.

I am allowed to obtain new games ONLY as gifts or trades, and I'm just not allowed to spend any money on making this happen (so no postage costs allowed!).

So it was that a game I've wanted for so long has dropped into my lap. Goodbye to a copy of Tannhauser I never played, hello to Twilight Struggle.

But how is this possible, you may well ask?

It just so happens that my erstwhile opponent, Sorp222 also runs a store and since I was going over to his anyway to play games I managed to persuade the recipient of said bloated, unloved euchronic game from my shelf to pay cash to Paul instead of me and, as a result, a shiny new copy of Twilight Struggle is mine.

(There's a pre-bought travelcard justification for the travel that I won't say any more on)

Anyway, I see this as the completion of my collection for the moment and a magnificent folly that essentially locks me into, I estimate, three years without game purchases while I play the arbitrary three figure number of games of this and Tigris and Euphrates.

So why was the obtaining of this cold war 'em up so important to me?


In Twilight Struggle, well known as the 'geek's number one game, you play as either the USA or USSR and attempt to control the world through well timed political actions, coups and influence while attempting to make the most of events that occur along the way.

If you don't know the game at all I strongly recommend you check out the many great reviews of it on the game's page. The way I think of it is as the kind of game where you think you're about to get destroyed at any moment for the whole length but, crucially, your opponent does too!

Many a time I sat there through my three previous games and thought "all of these cards are bad" only to see a similar thought written on the face of my opponent. It's how you make the most of what you've got that intrigues me and makes me believe that I will enjoy this easily for 100 plays.

Why does it fit the system? Well, it's because the experience of growing into a good TS player is a labour of love - there are several distinct stages of learning, I understand. From exploration; through discovery of crucial cards; to probability judgements and eventually, hopefully, understanding.

And I also love the theme. The whole cold war in an evening? I'll consider that well worth the £0.00 I paid to get it.

So that's it! All ten games are chosen and the challenge to myself well begun. Will I succeed? Stay tuned and find out.
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