This is Risk but more StarCrafty. (StarCraft is a real-time strategy computer game where players compete to be the fastest at harvesting resources and building the biggest army in order to annihilate the other players. There is no prerequisite to knowing any of this to play Risk StarCraft.)
Game time: 1 1/2 to 3 hours for 3-6 players (can be 2 players if needed).
The aim of StarCraft Risk is to win.
Winning is achieved by either being the first to get the prerequisite number of achievements or being the only faction still standing.
The game comprises of a main board with six different sized planets from the Kropulu Sector (Char, Aiur, Korhal, Zerus, Shakuras and Mar Sara). These are split into territories with each planet holding a different number of territories. (Standard Risk has a map of the world (planet Earth) with the six main continents split up into territories.)
There are six factions and minerals making a total of 330 playing pieces.
Red – Valerian Mengsk
Blue – Jim Raynor
Brown – Zagara
Purple – Kerrigan, Queen Of Blades
Yellow – Artanis
Orange – Zeratul
Each faction comprises of a number or 1 army units (Marine/Zergling/Zealot) and 3 army units (Siege Tank/Hydralisk/Stalker), 1 Hero Unit (as listed above) and 1 Base unit (Command Centre/Hive/Nexus).(Standard Risk has different coloured pieces of: triangle=1 army, five pointed stars=5 armies, ten pointed star=10 armies. More armies feature in standard Risk.) There are also 3 different faction decks of cards which are shared by players playing the same race. (Standard Risk just has the one deck). Each card shows 1 or 2 stars, a territory on the board and a special ability. (Standard Risk has the territory and a picture of either infantry/calvalry/artillery.)
There are also a number of mineral field pieces.
3 Attack die (red) and 2 defence die (black), 1 bonus attack die (see-through red) and 1 bonus defence die (see-through black). (Standard Risk has no mineral fields or bonus die).
Silver Achievement Tokens, Gold Achievement Tokens, Reward Tokens.
Game set-up is either using the predetermined arrangement in the rules stating how many of whose armies go where as well as the locations of the mineral fields and bases. Players choose where their heroes go. Alternatively the traditional Risk set-up requires all the cards to be shuffled up and dealt out to all players who then claim all the territories depicted on their cards – which are then handed in and resorted into their separate factions (or not – players’ choice). Each player starts with a limited number of units so that only 1 or 2 armies can be placed in each territory owned.
Each turn comprises of three parts: Reinforce, Invade, Manoeuvre.
At the start of the turn each territory and mineral field that player owns is counted and the total is divided by 3. Add 1 per base controlled (players can claim each other’s bases if they invade that particular territory). Add planetary bonuses (if a player controls every territory on a planet – and it’s moon(s) – they get whatever that planet states they get (2-7 depending on size). Also any cards gained from previous turns may be redeemed using the star-to-reinforcement conversion rate printed on the board (2 stars = 2 armies, 10 stars = 30 armies). (Standard Risk has the same method except that it doesn’t have the mineral fields or bases and redeeming cards requires three-of-a-kind or one-of-each – a couple of wild cards help out here.)
Once the reinforcements have been successfully calculated, they’re added to any territory(ies) controlled by that player.
The player then invades territories neighbouring territories they own. They must always leave at least 1 army in the territory they’re invading from and cannot invade with more than 3 armies at a time. (Standard Risk had no invade limiter and this saw overpowered players cutting a unstoppable swath across the board.) A player may attempt to invade any adjacent territory as many times as they wish to/can.
The last move a player does is a single manoeuvre where they can move as many armies from a single territory to another as long as they own all the territories in between.
At the end of their turn, the player then checks to see if they’ve met any of the 8 achievement goals (control all of char, invade 10 territories in one turn, etc.) and claims it if they have – only 1 achievement may be claimed a turn. In some game settings achievements also come with rewards (use of the bonus die, extra resources, extra manoeuvres, etc). If no achievements are claimed the player may take a faction card if they successfully invaded at least 1 territory that turn.
When specified on the card any player my choose to play the card for its ability rather than use it towards reinforcements. (Needless to say the standard Risk doesn’t have any of that. However it does has mission objectives, of which one card is given to each player – unseen by the other players – and that is that player’s winning task.)
On the whole Risk StarCraft does have a more balanced and strategic play than the original.