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Spirit Games (Est. 1984) - Supplying role playing games (RPG), wargames rules, miniatures and scenery, new and traditional board and card games for the last 20 years sells Twilight Struggle: The Cold War, 1945-1989 Deluxe Edition

Twilight Struggle: The Cold War, 1945-1989 Deluxe Edition


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In 1945, unlikely allies toppled Hitler's war machine, while humanity's most devastating weapons forced the Japanese Empire to its knees in a storm of fire. Where once there stood many great powers, there now stood only two - the United States and the Soviet Union. The world had scant months to collectively sigh in relief before a new conflict threatened. Unlike the titanic struggles of the preceding decades, this conflict would be waged not primarily by soldiers and tanks, but by spies and politicians, scientists and intellectuals, artists and traitors.

Twilight Struggle is a two-player game simulating the 45 year dance of intrigue, prestige, and occasional flares of warfare between the USSR and the USA. The entire world is the stage on which these two titans fight. The game begins amidst the ruins of Europe as the two new superpowers scramble over the wreckage of WWII, and ends in 1989, when only the United States remained standing.

Twilight Struggle inherits its fundamental systems from the card-driven classics We the People and Hannibal. It is a quick-playing, low-complexity game in that tradition. The game map is a world map of the period, whereon players move units and exert influence in attempts to gain allies and control for their superpower.

Twilight Struggle's Event cards add detail and flavour to the game. They cover a vast array of historical happenings: the Arab-Israeli conflicts, Vietnam conflict, the peace movement, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and other such incidents that brought the world to the brink of nuclear annihilation. Subsystems capture the prestige-laden Space Race as well as nuclear tensions, with the possibility of game-ending nuclear war. Can you, as the U.S. President or Soviet Premier, lead your forces to victory? Play Twilight Struggle, and find out.


  • Two Counter Sheets - 9/16 inch
  • Mounted Deluxe 22x34 inch Map
  • 110 Event Cards
  • Rules Booklet
  • Two Player Aid Cards
  • Two 6-sided dice

Reviews Review Game
By Hopuk From Lancs in United Kingdom
This is a 2 player card driven wargame set during the cold war, with one player as USA and the other as the USSR. The rules are pretty straightforward and the game involves you playing the cards to gain influence over different countries to ultimately win the cold war.

The heart of the game are the event cards, each depicting an event during the cold war, with some favouring either the USA or Russia, with others sort of neutral an playable by either side. The catch here is that if you play a card that favours your opponent, then that event still occurs which adds an amzing amount of tension to the play of the cards!

Each card also bears a number from 1 to 4 and you use these numbers to place influence markers on the map to gain control of regions, which is important as these are scored during scoring rounds. The score track is also interesting in itself, as one half is US and the other USSR with just one score marker, so the score track becomes a tug of war. If the US gains points, then Russia has to regain those points just to bring the marker back to zero, before he can start to earn points himself!

The game is tense and just such fun to play and well worth paying the price tag. It will take you 2 hours or more to play but you will thoroughly enjoy the time you spend playing it.

By Loughborough Gamer From Leics in UK
First and foremost this is a FUN game. There isn't as much depth as other Card Driven Games because of the strong possibility of wild swings of fortune - but there's enough to make it interesting. And, this is a game whose trade-offs are exactly as the designers' introduction states - playability is good, realism/room for long-term Strategy is limited.

The card draw and the die rolling can make things see-saw very quickly. You can win in a flash or lose in one, too. But, you know what, since it's quick and fun, that doesn't seem to matter too much!

The theme is well done and I like most of the event cards: Flower Power, Glasnost, Defectors, Casto, Iron Lady etc, though there is the occasional lapse into something more bland, but not often. The Space Race is nice and the Influence placement (borrowed from Hannibal) is fun. I like the way nuclear war is treated, although Defcon can be a bit unforgiving.

Card management is critical, of course - and the game is clever enough so that you can't ALWAYS get that right, though there are safety nets.

Twilight Struggle: The Cold War, 1945-1989 Deluxe Edition by Board Game Geek Link for more Reviews

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10% over £100

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Related Tags
Playing Time
3 hours
Game Type
GMT Games
No. Players
1-2 Players
Ananda Gupta
Jason Matthews
13 +
Manufacturer's Code

Spirit Games (Est. 1984, Lefglow Ltd) - Supplying role playing games (RPG), wargames rules, miniatures and scenery, new and traditional board and card games for the last 36 years

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