Friday, 27 December 2013
Dalek Invasion Earth
Well today I managed to persuade my beloved non-wargaming spouse to play a game of Risk: The Dalek Invasion of Earth, which I had been given for Xmas. In the excitement to set-up the game board and play I had forgotten that there were already rules for two player games; after I had dealt three factions out, with the third being nominally controlled by the plush toy kitten's. They represented a neutral Dalek faction that would attack with each of us controlling their forces on alternate moves.
What is nice about the new editions of Risk is that there are ways to end the game in a reasonable period of time. In this case the game ends on the eleventh regeneration of the Doctor. You track his regenerations by using a Clara token that progresses each time a player's turn begins, with some of the slots making you roll a D6 to see if he takes another regeneration if you fail the roll. So games can theoretically be much shorter than eleven rounds. Ours was over in two hours, which was mostly down to having to read the special rules, refreshing my memory on how the game plays and taking the pictures for the blog.
The other twist to this version of Risk is the TARDIS moving randomly around the board and wherever it lands no movement or fighting may occur. Other bits of chrome are the Mission cards that give one bonus Daleks for conquering certain territories, and Power cards that can either reduce or increase the number of Daleks one gets at the beginning of your turn, on top of the usual amount that one is entitled to. One of the Power cards allows you to move the TARDIS to another territory. However, after counting the cards at the end of the game the odds are you will lose Daleks more often than you will gain them.
As usual every territory you successfully invade gets you a card that you save up and cash in for more Daleks, based not on sets, but on the number of stars on the card. More stars equals more Daleks. Our game ended with the plush toy kittens having the most territories, but if the Doctor hadn't regenerated then my partner was about to hand in a heap load of cards and sweep all who stood in their way off the board.
Of course I know that the rabid Dalek fans who are reading this really want to know if the miniatures in this game fulfill their need for 15mm scale Daleks for wargaming. The answer is yes, but I would want to replace the plunger arms with pins as the moulded Daleks do not have plungers on the end of the arms.
As you can see above the small Daleks are very compatible with my old white metal ones from thirty years ago. The mid-size ones appear to be a good match for 20mm games, and the large for 28mm wargaming. However, do note that two of the five factions are mouldings of the New Paradigm Daleks and they suck. More details on contents here and where to buy it here.