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Empire of the Sun (EotS) is Mark Herman's third card driven design (2005 Charles S Roberts Award for Design and Graphics, Walter Luc Haas Award for Best Simulation) that covers the Pacific Theatre of Operations in World War II. This historic simulation covers the action from Pear Harbour until the surrender of Japan. EotS is the first card driven game (CDG) to move the system back toward the classic hexagon wargame, while retaining all of the tension and uncertainty people have come to expect from a CDG. Players are cast in the role of MacArthur, Nimitz, and Yamamoto, as you direct your forces across the breadth of the globe from India to Hawaii and from Alaska to Australia. This is represented on a single map based on a 1942 equal area projection of the entire theatre of conflict.
The EotS 2nd Edition now features the Card Driven Solitaire System (CDSS) allowing you to play either side against an artificical opponent or for new players as a training program to rapidly improve your EotS IQ!
As in other games using the CDG system, players try to maximize the impact of their cards even as they hide their intentions and traps from their opponent. The player is faced with a wide set of clear strategic choices. The focus of EotS is on directing major offensive axes of advance. The Japanese early in the game are challenged to achieve their historical expansion as Allied forces battle the clock to react with their in-place forces trying to achieve maximum damage to the hard-to-replace Japanese veteran units.
Combat in EotS is based on successfully bringing superior combined land, air, and sea forces to bear in a two-tiered combat system. The first tier is the resolution of air-naval combat, the second tier covers ground combat. The culmination of both tiers results in one side prevailing in battle.
The key variable in determining strategic victory is the level of U.S. political will. The Japanese win the game by forcing the U.S. into a negotiated peace, which was not achieved historically. The Japanese achieve this by knocking countries like India, China, and Australia out of the war, while inflicting massive casualties on the United States. The delivery of the A-bomb on its historical schedule is not a guarantee, often necessitating Operation Olympic and the invasion of Japan. It is often in its darkest hour that the Japanese find victory in EotS
EotS scenarios were designed with the busy enthusiast, hardcore grognard, and competitive tournament player in mind. EotS was designed to be played in yearly scenarios (1942, 1943 and 1944) of three turns each that play in under two hours. If you are a fan of CDGs, EotS takes the genre into a familiar, but new direction. I you are a fan of classic hexagon wargames, this game has all of the features that brought you to this hobby in the first place, but with a new level of excitement and replayability. The game is comprehensive, but easy to learn.
|By||JoshPayne||From||Warwickshire in United Kingdom|
|Empire of the Sun is really good: rich, engaging and stimulating, albeit protracted. It's very detailed and it has lots of interesting possibilities. It develops Mark Herman's 'Plan Orange' wargame from the C3i Magazine. Empire of the Sun is a traditional CDG ('Card Driven Game') but it tries to reconcile the card system with a hex map for the units. This combination of approaches and rules mechanics makes it long and cumbersome, but with some good features like intelligence and surprise attacks. The Rulebook and play examples are tough to get through and digest, but the cards and counters are very attractive and cover a range of land, sea and air units, with a wide variety of events. The map details and deals well with the South Pacific islands involved, Australia and large sea areas for combat. The designer's passion for the history of the theatre is evident in the play and all the components. Not a rushed design. Long to play. Overall one of the best games on the War in the Pacific, if you accept it's not quick. Arguably, the vast number of possible hexes to move to sometimes makes the decisions too subtle.|
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12 to adult
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 34 years
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