SD's Weekly Tabletop Game Event:
Games: Stratego
Site: Stratego - Metaforge
Date/Time: Wednesday, May 13th @ 9:00 PM EST
Channel: Main Lobby
Rules: http://www.swoopzone.net/gamenight/stratego.html

While over at BlizzForums through the Sports and More board, every Wednesday Night I have hosted a weekly Card Game or Board Game Night. The idea of these nights is to learn some new games, meet some people and just have some fun in a more casual environment. You can get an idea of the full level of the games we have played by checking out: http://www.swoopzone.net/gamenight/

This week we will be playing Stratego, which is a game that I compare very favorably to that of Chess. Note that we will be playing this tonight.

Introduction to Stratego:

Considering the fact that Game Table Online has been acting a bit screwy yet again, I decided that for this week I would introduce to the BF group, the game of Stratego. Stratego is one of my favorite board games because it is a game that combines elements of chess, checkers, chinese checkers and risk all in one. I have never been a huge fan of chess despite my own love for deeper strategy games, and Stratego is the game that in my mind has a lot of the elements that make Chess great to me but also add a lot of intrigue. So what is the objective of Stratego? It's very similar to that of Chess, as your objective is to attempt to capture your opponent's flag and you use a series of different pieces that all have different ranks to attempt to capture the flag. However, here is what makes Stratego unique from that of any other game. As you are very well aware, in Chess, Checkers and Chinese Checkers, the board is set up the exact same way each time. Not so in Stratego. Before each game, each player places their pieces on the game board in any manner that they wish, to help set up their own strategy and gameplan. That right there is what really adds a lot of the fun to Stratego, as every single game is going to be unique, simply because the player's are going to set up the board their own way.

What makes a good Stratego player? Honestly, the biggest thing in my mind is Memory. In Stratego, your pieces are hidden from your opponent and your opponent's pieces are hidden from you, except for the times when a piece attacks another piece. So you need to be able to keep a keen memory on where "bombs" are located, where the more powerful pieces are on the board, etc.. Let me tell you, this game is very simple at its heart as there are only a couple of important rules(which I'll indicate below) but it is a game that you won't be able to master.

Your Unit Set:

I thought I better give you some other details and the biggest intricacies of the game:

Here are the units that you get in a game to set up(It is important to note that the LOWER the rank of a piece, the more powerful it is):

1 Flag - Obviously this is the piece that everyone wants to capture
1 Marshall[Rank: 1] - Each player gets 1 Marshall, which is the highest ranked piece in the board. Only three units can kill a Marshall. The opponent's Marshall, a Bomb or a Spy that attacks it.
1 General[Rank: 2] - Only three units can kill a General, a Marshall, the opponent's General or a Bomb
2 Colonel[Rank: 3]
3 Major[Rank: 4]
4 Captain[Rank: 5]
4 Lieutenant[Rank: 6]
4 Sergeant[Rank:7]
5 Miners[Rank: 8] - A critical piece in the game of Stratego. Miners are the only pieces in the game of Stratego that can destroy bombs. But notice that all units except for the scouts listed below can kill the miner.
8 Scouts[Rank: 9] - Another critical piece in providing you information. The scout is the only piece that can move multiple tiles horizontally or vertically provided there are no obstacles in its path. These units are defeated by any other units, but they can provide you critical information in what an opponent is doing.
1 Spy[Rank: S] - A very unique piece. The spy is the only moving piece that can kill the Marshal, but the spy must attack first. If a Marshall attacks the spy first, then the spy is killed. Keep in mind that even scouts can kill the spy.
6 Bombs - Pieces that cannot be moved, but will kill any unit except for a Miner.

All of the pieces in the game move one spot at a time except for the scouts.

How to Sign Up At Metaforge:

You have two options for signing up for Stratego at Metaforge. They have a java applet that you can open up in any browser by going to this address: http://metaforge.net/olg/webstratego...rc=mfg_ws_menu. When the site loads up, it will prompt you to log in, you will need to register with the site by providing them an e-mail address. Then once you are done, it'll send you a password for use in the game.

The second option is the one that I personally recommend. Metaforge has a standalone downloadable client that you can install to your computer first and then run the game directly through it. In this case, when the client loads up, you're going to want to hit the "connect" button on the bottom of the screen and it will give you the same prompt as listed above. You can download this at: http://metaforge.net/olg/webstratego...rc=mfg_ws_menu

Note that the games of Stratego are 1v1 primarily. So that means we'll probably be having multiple games going on at the same time. Just keep an eye out for SpaceDominator and other nicknames that you are familiar with.

If you have any questions about their service or about the event as a whole, please let me know.

Thanks a lot!