Vote 2020 graphic
Everything you need to know about and expect during
the most important election of our lifetimes

Risk Gets Even Riskier With Risk: Legacy, a High-Stakes Game of Permanent Decisions

Illustration for article titled emRisk/em Gets Even Riskier With emRisk: Legacy/em, a High-Stakes Game of Permanent Decisions

The classic board game Risk is getting a turbocharged (and somewhat controversial) update in the form of Risk: Legacy. In Legacy, players will permanently mark up and change their boards, each round leaving the battlefield permanently altered. Sounds… kind of epic, actually.


The game's designer, Rob Daviau, hopped onto the BoardGameGeek forums to talk about the changes, and gave a really great breakdown of all the things he's going for. In the post, he ponders a lot of broader concepts that carry over to video games, and offers a pretty cool look at how and why he's breaking some fundamental rules.

There are no do overs in life. Some decisions just make you who you are.

This led us to wondering why games always have to reset. Why are they a medium that always goes back to start? Movies and books are static forms of entertainment meant to be viewed but not altered. Games, by nature, demand that the user create the experience. We wanted to push that boundary to have lasting effects. Now you really create the experience. This game is not art to be hung on a wall but a leather jacket to be worn around until it has its own unique story.

It is one thing to play a card in a game to gain an advantage. It is entirely different to play a card and then rip it up, banning it from the game forever (I know that none of you will actually rip it up). Or to mark a territory that will change its destiny from here on out. It's a different decision process. How important is that card now? Will it be more important in a future game? Will you have it then? Is this the time? Is it worth it?


So while this is a non-digital, non-graffixxed board game we're talking about, it raises a lot of interesting questions about permanence, gameplay, and overarching design. Definitely worth giving it a read, at least if you're a Nerdy McNerdlinger like me.

Risk: Legacy Designer Notes [BoardGameGeek]

You can contact Kirk Hamilton, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter


I've never understood what people like about this game, it's all about luck. No skill involved, I like my games to require the least amount of luck as possible.