War of the Roses


Alex introduced me to his latest acquisition, War of the Roses, recently.  I have found myself thinking about it, which is an indication that I would probably like to buy a copy for myself.  But so far, I have been dragging my feet.

You can read about the game of BGG, so I won’t try to detail all of the features.  But broadly this is a game that updates Kingmaker.  Kingmaker is an older game about the war for the English throne between the House of York and the House of Lancaster.  I don’t know that it was really a great game, but it definitely was a great theme.  I actually played a lot more of Warrior Knights (Games Workshop, 1st edition) which took the concepts in Kingmaker and made them into a more playable game.  But neither Kingmaker or 1st edition Warrior Knights have enjoyed much attention in years.

So I have been considering if it is time to sell/trade my copies of these games, and go ahead and own a copy of War of the Roses instead.  But I paused in this thinking after Tuesday night, when Chester after playing War of the Roses for the first time, gave it a rather weak rating – and offered a remark that he didn’t like blind bidding games.  My concern is that with a military theme, and a 2-3 hour duration, my expected audience is rather limited.  So will this game really get played?

And I will admit, I had not really considered that War of the Roses is a blind bidding game.  Oh, sure, the competition for the Captain of Calais is – but is the rest?  I was somehow swept away by the theme, and hadn’t really felt like I was blind bidding.  Instead I felt like I was planning, like you do in a game of Wallenstein.  I want to play again, and put out my critical receptors…  Is this game more luck and less strategy?


One Response to “War of the Roses”

  1. Alex Sorbello Says:

    Since the combat is resolved in turn order and on a one for one basis. I do not think that luck could be considered an element. Maybe Chaos is a better term to describe this so called luck factor. However you can overcome chaos by out thinking your opponents.
    The better decisions makes the player win.
    Also keep in mind that it is somewhat a partner type game. In the 3 games I now have played. The team fighting each other the most has never been the victory team/player. Chester and John in the game mentioned were battling each other while myself and Ed cooperated more in a sense of not wasting resources to keep each other at bay.
    just my 2 cents

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