CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under 3 yrs.
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- 3 to 5 player game
- 90 to 120 minutes to play
- Medieval Japanese setting
- Attractive board game
- Interesting and unique game play
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Top Customer Reviews
I think of it as a more strategic and less luck involved RISK.
In Shogun you're trying to conquer regions of Japan (in the imperial times). The game is played in a "2 year period", this is just another way of saying that it is played in 2 rounds wich are divided in 3 regular phases (Spring, Summer, Fall) and 1 scoring phase (Winter).
In the first 3 phases, you try to conquer different regions, as well as trying to improve the ones you already have. In this phases you can build castles, temples or theaters in your existing regions, you can collect taxes or rice from the wealthiest regions you have (and then wait for the peasants to rise against you!), or you can fight against your enemies (at least adjacent ones) to conquer new lands!.
Fights are settled with the cube tower (in my opinion, the coolest thing about the game!), in each of your regions you have cubes representing your armies (much like miniatures in risk), you can choose to combat with any number of armies you have, against a number chosen by your opponent, then you take both the armies you have and your opponents, and you throw them in the cube tower. The cube tower has several levels inside that keep the cubes inside of it, so a lot of your armies and you opponets wont make it outside of the tower, so the one with the most armies at the bottom of the cube tower, wins.
On the Winter phase, you get points for each region, the mayority of the castles, temples and theaters in each region. Also you have to feed the people on each of your regions. Remember that rice?Read more ›
Designer: Dirk Henn, based on Wallenstein
SETUP: 10-15 minutes
PLAY TIME: 2-3 HOURS
PLAYERS: 3-5, dynamics works well with all numbers
TYPE: Strategy planning, war game
SHOGUN has replaced Risk, Axis and Allies, and all other board war games of medium to light complexity for me. I will not even touch those other games when Shogun is around. I would love to see expansions or other versions of the game, using the same game mechanics which are brilliant. A World War II version, North America, Europe, Fantasy, Space, etc. would be fantastic.
The board is Japan divided into smaller territories in the 16th Century during the Sengoku Jidai period, an era of warring samurais, ninjas, daimyos, Shogun, and the Emperor. Each player chooses one of the main clans that are battling to rule Japan. Players setup relatively quickly receiving territory and placing troops down on the board. Small colored cubes (not fancy pieces) are used as army groups and placed according to the chart on owned territories. They are used in battle with an ultra cool tower mechanism which surpasses the use of dice or other random battle deciders.
BATTLE TOWER: the tower is loaded with armies and farmers which can help or hinder your battle progress. There are unique slats that capture the cube, allowing some to fall through while trapping others. By dropping your cubes and the opponent's cubes, they cause a chain reaction which releases cubes into the bottom tray like a slot machine. Based on the colors, the dominant one wins.Read more ›
One similarity it shares with Year of the Dragon, for example, is that you know what events are coming in the future, and must prepare accordingly for them. Another similarity it shares with YOTD is that you bid for different privileges to start each turn, where each privilege gives some type of bonus action.
The game board consists of separate provinces where players will place their armies. The board looks similar to El Grande in this regard, although players share control of regions in El Grande, while in Shogun, only 1 player is allowed to control a province. Therefore, battles occur when 1 player wants to sieze control of a province owned by another player.
And this introduces the unique aspect of Shogun: the Battle Tower! This tower is maybe 8" tall or so, with a funnel opening at the top and an opening at the bottom spilling out to a collection tray. Inside the tower are staggered ledges that can trap pieces. The idea is that all the army pieces involved in a battle are dumped into the tower at once, and the majority that come out the bottom determine the winner. Obviously, this adds the unpredictability element where no outcome is guaranteed -- and undoubtedly adds some laughs and fun to the game. Additionally, pieces that don't come out of the tower remain there, and they may come out in some future battle.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This game is just amazing. The coolest element by far is the battle tower mechanism. Players' forces are represented by colored cubes which are dropped into the tower at the start... Read morePublished 9 days ago by L. Burch
Fun, interesting game mechanics. Good game for fans of RISK but want a definite game end point.Published 1 month ago by Gregory Lake
Shogun is a great strategy game mixed in with some luck and randomness of a very cool battle tower. I think that the tower, where you place your armies, is awesome but the most... Read morePublished 9 months ago by supe
My 12 year old is fascinated by Japan so we gave him this game as a gift. I did not realize how complicated and time-consuming it was, and I was initially dismayed because games... Read morePublished on January 16, 2014 by agent99
I bought this expecting risk with a bit more depth. While that may be what this is, The key to winning this game is money management. Read morePublished on July 16, 2013 by Jason
A beautiful gaame but the learning curve is really steep, I do not like to have to spend three days reading the rules before playing. Read morePublished on April 11, 2013 by Russell Griffith
I already knew what I was getting with this board game. One of my best friends has it and we'd played his copy of the game a couple times, and I knew I wanted my own. Read morePublished on August 22, 2011 by Jus
Shogun is a high quality game, with beautifully designed components. This may be the best feudal Japan light strategy game, particularly since the old Milton Bradley Samurai... Read morePublished on December 21, 2010 by Zift