28 June 2017
Larry Harris has been working on the project ‘chock full of totally new concepts and game systems’ for four years
The designer behind one of the tabletop’s most acclaimed and best-loved war games has taken the wraps off his next massive project.
Larry Harris is best known as the creator of Axis & Allies, the influential series of epic World War II titles first published in the early 1980s. In Axis & Allies, players take on the roles of nations battling for control of regions around the world, not unlike an advanced version of Risk.
Harris’ next game, War Room, sounds somewhat like a combination of Axis & Allies and another expansive, complex war strategy classic: Diplomacy.
Two to six players once again take charge of nations during World War II, working with their allies to execute secret movement and production orders that are all performed simultaneously.
Military units can be assigned different stances for conflict across air, land and sea, with maintaining control of vital resources and safeguarding convoys key to keeping up morale while demoralising rival nations – opening the door to seize command of their capitals.
It’s a big game, and takes place on a fittingly enormous 42-inch circular map with units represented by stackable blocks.
Harris has been working on War Room for four years, and claims that it is “chock full of totally new concepts and game systems”.
“I'm talking about an elegant secret simultaneous movement system that you will delight in,” he explained. “A fascinating economic and social simulation that begins its trek in the oils fields, iron mines and rubber tree plantations of a world at war. A totally new combat system that gives you direct impact on the outcome.
“Now you will have to walk the fine line between the need for guns and your population’s need for butter. Failing to do so could lead to civil unrest, a collapsed economy and even massive unit desertions from your battlefields.”
It sounds fascinating – and Harris himself says that he is as excited about the “truly massive” game as he was when Axis & Allies was first released.
The designer has teamed up with fresh-faced indie tabletop publisher Nightingale Games, led by industry vet Thomas Gale, to bring War Room to Kickstarter this autumn.