The Game of Nations
This game has relatively little luck and a high strategy content. It is a somewhat abstracted geopolitical simulation of superpowers' war of influence in the Middle East - the goal being the control of oil supplies, of course.
The map shows 8 fictitious Middle Eastern oil producing countries, one of which controls the Canal that links both ocean sides. If your superpower is on one ocean and you try to obtain oil from a country bordering on the other ocean, the Canal becomes of vital strategic importance. The alternative is to connect that country to another on the "correct" side of the board (through the land-locked middle countries, which are also bigger producers) with a series of pipelines. To move oil and to build things you must, of course, have a friendly leader in place at the head of that country...
You start with a leader of your colour on the capital of a country and one tanker that can transport oil from that country's port to your country. Oddly, oil is worth more if a certain type of ruler is in place (king or politician versus a dictator or guerrilla). You spend money to move leader pieces about the board, with the "better" pieces costing more. Secret agents also move each turn and are used to defend attacks by blocking the path of opposing leaders and for moving onto "?" spaces to take a gamble on an incident card. Half the cards are favorable and half not. They offer loans, destroy your tanker, allow you to seize a country or cause the death of one of your leaders.
To win players must continually take risks and try to depose their opponent while trying to maximize their oil revenue. In extreme cases an early bold attack combined with the right incident card can see the game end very quickly! Recommended.
Ages: 12 and up
Players: 2 to 4
Playing Time: 120 minutes