Clan Wars

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Clan Wars
Designer: Red Baron
Type: Novelty
Countries: 64 (Medium)
Board Info
Reviews Launch Game
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Clan Wars is a game based on the Law of the Jungle. Various plants and animals are placed in a hexagonal grid, and one-way borders are assigned such that the various creatures can only attack the kinds of creatures they would consume in real life.

At the top of the food chain are four human clans: Apache, Mongol, Viking, and Zulu. The four clan hexes are the most powerful on the board; a player who can capture and hold them will usually win the game.

[edit] Gameplay

The following rules of movement apply to the game:

  • In general, creatures attack what they normally consume.
  • Humans attack everything.
  • Carnivores attack any kind of animal.
  • Herbivores attack any kind of plant.
  • Plants attack bacteria (which represents a return to the soil).
  • Bacteria attack anything but bacteria.

The gameboard wraps, with movement permitted off the side of the board and onto the opposite side.

As a visual cue, small attack arrows are placed in each hex which indicate the sides from which that hex can be attacked.

"Hordes" style bonuses are given. This means that an extra army is provided for each hex you own if you also own all the hexes surrounding it. These bonuses are given even when the adjacent hexes wrap around to another side of the board. In addition, a clan bonus is given for owning more than one clan:

  • 5 points for owning two clans
  • 15 points for owning three clans
  • 30 points for owning all four clans

Note: A few people have pointed out that mushrooms act like plants in this game despite the fact that they are fungi and not true plants. Yes, indeed, point noted. But fungi aren't animals and they aren't bacteria, so they don't belong in those categories either. For purposes of this game, let's just say they are plant-like and leave it at that, shall we?

[edit] Strategy

It's very important in this game to plan your attacks carefully, especially later in the game when card values are high. If you don't, you're bound to find the path to your objective blocked by some combination of one-way borders and hexes that you already occupy. This is a thinker's game; playing by the seat of your pants doesn't work as well here as it does in other Warfish games.

Next to the clan hexes, the bacteria hexes tend to be the most powerful since they can attack almost anything. Carnivore hexes are surprisingly weak.

The clan hexes are the key to this game. Occupy them if possible, and if you can't, try to keep other players from owning more than one.

[edit] Version History

The initial version of this game was known as Food Chain, and had a 2008 Presidential Election theme. Gameplay has since been improved by eliminating the jumps across multiple hexes (which made it too easy to break bonuses) and by adding clan bonuses (which help to end the game more quickly). It was also important to change the theme to one with an unlimited shelf life.

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