October 21, 2010

Horse 1118 - Risky Business.

I used to roll the dice
Feel the fear in my enemy's eyes
Listen as the crowd would sing:
"Now the old king is dead!

Long live the king!"
One minute I held the key
Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand
- Coldplay, Viva La Vida

History is one giant game of Risk. Various empires have sprung up and fallen, and the main reason why no-one has ever been entirely successful is that the world is simply to vast and unwieldy to take on all at once. To put it more succinctly, as that great sage BJD once said "Don't spread yourself too thin"

If you look at the truly great empires of history, then India, China, Egypt, the Incas, Mayans, Aztecs, and even the Spanish, French and Soviets have only ever managed to occupy 6 territories at most. Even the US currently only owns two and hasn't really conquered a third. This leaves only four empires in history worth discussing, and even then only one has made a significant tilt at the board.

Greece - 3

The most that the Greek Empire ever achieved was three territories. Those being Southern Europe, Egypt and the Middle East. For this reason, Greece was always bound to fail. Admittedly they did try to push into India, but it was successful. The point is that you can't defend 3 territories with seven borders, and so the Greeks faded into history.

The Romans - 7

The Roman Empire for all it was worth, even at its most extant under Hadrian, still only managed to acquire seven territories. Those being Southern Europe, Egypt and the Middle East, North Africa, Western Europe, Northern Europe and Great Britain. The Romans again made the same mistake as the Greeks, 7 territories with eight borders.
The Roman Empire did make another mistake however, if they'd concentrated on Europe, they may have been able to pick up the continent bonus of five armies.

Britain - 10.

Britain was an empire upon which "the sun never set". Even so it only managed to hold 10 territories: Great Britain, Alberta, Eastern United States, Northwest Territory, Ontario, Quebec, South Africa, India, Eastern Australia, Western Australia.

Ten territories is a good effort but again, it still isn't even good enough to gain an extra bonus army for having sufficient territories. They came tanalisingly close with holding North America, but negelected to conquer Central America, Alaska or Greenland.

The Third Reich - 3

This blog post invokes Godwin's Law by mentioning Hitler but more importantly, why he failed.
Hitler should have known that you only get a continent bonus by taking a whole continent. He gave up on attacking Great Britain, failed in taking the Ukraine, didn't conquer Scandinavia and didn't even reach Iceland.
Hitler should have realised that Europe is a difficult place to start from. Furthermore, the United States, Canada and Britain who actually did move troops through Iceland, would always "break out" into Western Europe, and with the Soviets on the other side, Hitler didn't stand a chance.

Logically the only nation in the world with any real chance as far as I can see is possibly Australia. They own both Eastern Australia and Western Australia. The big problem is New Guinea which is difficult to navigate and a big blob on Indonesia, and then the two vast countries of China and India. Anyone who cab break out of Oceania usually stands a good chance of doing well; although keeping and holding Asia is a massive task, provided you can do it, there is a continent bonus of eight armies, and you would have lots of troops from turning in cards as well.

If only...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

WTF? seriously WTF?

hitler was a total bastard who killed millions of jews and u make fun of him as tho its all a big game

this is not funny