Last updated on November 11, 2021
The classic game of global dominance, Risk, has been played for generations by friends and families to test the limits of their friendships and strategy skills. Even though Risk remains one of the most popular board games today, it’s not the only board game that consists of diplomacy, conflict, and conquest. Here are the top ten:
- War of the Ring – board game
- Star Wars: Rebellion – board game
- Axis and Allies – board game
- A Game of Thrones – board game
- Scythe – board game
- Fortress America – board game
- Diplomacy – board game
- Dominion – Card game
- GodStorm – board game
- Small World – board game
If you’ve had your fill of Risk but want to expand your game library, check out these ten fantastic strategy board games that are guaranteed to keep you interested and entertained for hours! With that in mind, what exciting features from these games are comparable to Risk?
Table Of Contents
How Do They Work?
Albert Lamorisse, a French film director, created Risk 62 years ago, and the fast-paced pleasure still stands up today. Risk may not be the best board game for individuals seeking an easy way to break the ice at a home party, but it is ideal for those who enjoy strategy.
A fun fact is that Risk was one of the first games to offer concepts like Area Control and Area Movement. Risk also enables you to put your wits to the test as you struggle for global dominance, which is ideal for anyone interested in war statistics.
Risk isn’t the only war strategy game out there, which is good news if you’re looking for something new to add to your gaming arsenal. These games are just for you when you need to scratch that Risk-y itch; here is how they work.
1. War Of The Ring
War of the Ring is a role–playing game set in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth. One team controls Sauron and his terrifying shadow army in War of the Ring. The surviving squad is in charge of persuading the Free Peoples to join the War against Sauron before it’s too late.
War of the Ring is a highly complex game due to the numerous objectives and methods for achieving them. Before Sauron can locate and reclaim the One Ring, the Free Peoples must strive to destroy it. It can be challenging to protect the ringbearer while still putting up a good defense against Sauron’s unending army.
The War of the Ring game mechanism is asymmetric, with unique benefits and drawbacks for each side. The game’s “world” is seen in an isometric or top–down perspective. The Shadow and the Free Peoples are two major powers on this planet that you and your companion will rule.
In this fight for the death or salvation of Middle-Earth, each player is armed with cards and dice. The activities are chosen in rounds, with dice rolling and resource cards being used at critical points.
The game’s mechanics appear to have caught the spirit of Gandalf’s quote: “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
Indeed, every move dictated by the dice and every card dealt in response feels crucial to victory, the notion of time and resource management throughout the whole War of the Ring experience. There aren’t many games that reach this level of fate vs. strategy.
- For 2 4 players
- Takes about 2 hours to play
- A massive 70 x 100cm Game Board in two sections, 16 Action Dice, 5 Combat Dice and 76 Cardboard Counters
- Also included are 110 Event and Character Cards, Game Rules and 2 Player Aids
- 204 Plastic Figures representing Armies and Characters (more than 30 different sculptures)
2. Star Wars: Rebellion
Terror isn’t a feeling that comes to mind when you think about board games. But when a Death Star is orbiting above the outpost you’ve tucked away in the galaxy’s corner—and all the Empire needs to do to win is swiftly land on Endor’s surface—emotions run high.
It’s all about generating these moments in Star Wars: Rebellion , which means it’s a stressful job. The utmost success here is narrowing the gap between triumph and loss. The faithful depiction of a famous space operatic series in plastic and cardboard is the secondary achievement.
In Rebellion, the newest in the continuous excellent Fantasy Flight Star Wars games, you can play as either the Imperials or the Rebels, hunter or hunted. Before they make their first move, the Rebels decide right from the start: where do they build their base?
The jig is up if the Imps find this final bastion of hope and justice. To wipe your troops off the map, the Empire has to roll a few dice. The chances aren’t in your favor, youngster, with its overwhelming weaponry.
So, do you conceal your base on a filthy backwater planet, like Voldemort should have done with his Horcrux, or do you place it right under the Empire’s nose and hope that you’ll be forgotten in a fateful moment of Imperial arrogance? You’ll have to summon your tabletop Sun Tzu even before the first turn begins.
Star Wars: Rebellion offers players the chance to dive into the world of Star Wars unlike ever before, whether it be by destroying a vital Star Destroyer facility on Corellia or surprising your opponent’s Mon Mothma with Darth Vader. Everything is a lot of fun. When the Death Star comes cruising by, keep that Rebel poker face ready.
- EXPERIENCE THE GALACTIC CIVIL WAR LIKE NEVER BEFORE: In Star Wars Rebellion, you control the entire Galactic Empire or the fledgling Rebel Alliance. Command starships, account for troop movements and rally systems to your cause.
- STRATEGY GAME: Players plot their turns secretly, carefully revealing their plans in turns as the galaxy’s narrative unfolds. Iconic characters undergo important missions as you assign them, attempting to bring down the Empire’s infrastructure or locate the hidden Rebel base.
- A GAME OF EPIC CONFLICT: As a Rebel player, lead daring strikes against Imperial production facilities or the Death Star itself as every turn brings the Rebels that much closer to victory. As an Imperial player, hire bounty hunters and spread your might across the galaxy as you search for the pesky Rebels and crush their pitiful Rebellion once and for all.
- IMMERSE YOURSELF INTO THE STAR WARS UNIVERSE: Featuring more than 150 plastic miniatures and two game boards that account for thirty-two of the Star Wars galaxy’s most notable star systems, Star Wars Rebellion aspires to be as large and sweeping as the Star Wars universe itself.
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS AND AVERAGE PLAYTIME: Star Wars Rebellion is a strategy board game for 2 to 4 players and is suitable for ages 14 and older. Average playtime is approximately 3 to 4 hours.
3. Axis And Allies
If you’re looking for more strategic board games like Risk, Axis and Allies could be a perfect choice. Playing this game entails achieving world dominance by using tactics developed during World War II.
Unlike many other games, Axis & Allies emphasizes teamwork, and no single player will be crowned champion. You will form two teams, one representing the Axis Powers and the other representing the Allies.
The game then goes via different movements and variables, with each team making decisions to help their side win the battle. Like Risk, this game aims to take over the globe effectively; however, this one is set in a historical background.
Axis and Allies is a board game that will take a whole evening to finish, accommodating two-to-five players and requiring upwards of three hours to complete.
- SECOND EDITION: The Avalon Hill Axis and Allies 1942 strategy game builds upon the success of the first edition of the 1942 A and A board game. History buffs will love this exciting, multi-player tabletop game
- LARGE GAMEBOARD: The large gameboard (40" x 26") helps to create an enhanced play experience
- OVER 400 PLASTIC PIECES: Includes Antiaircraft Artillery combat unit and 5 sculpts including UK artillery, submarine and destroyer units, German artillery, and a Russian submarine
- CHANGE THE COURSE OF HISTORY: Take command of the forces from the UK, US, Soviet Union, Germany, or Japan and plot a strategy for world domination
- IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE: Experience an exciting night of tabletop gameplay. This World War II strategy board game is for 2-5 players, ages 12 and up and takes about 4 hours to play
4. A Game Of Thrones – The Board Game
Did you like the Game of Thrones series and now feel weirdly empty that it’s no longer on your television? If that’s the case, you’re in for a treat. Fantasy Flight Games’ 2nd edition Game of Thrones board game is ideal for fans of the type of strategy included in games like Risk.
Each player takes control of one of Westeros’ leading houses in this game. The game aims to achieve total control over your opponents and climb to the iron throne by using politics, military, and diplomacy. With ten rounds in total, this is a rather long game depending on how many players participate.
A player wins the game if they have captured the most territory by the end of the game. The best aspect of the Game of Thrones board game is how much time and work you’ll have to invest in establishing and breaking alliances with other players.
Remember that learning takes time; therefore, it may not be appropriate for younger children.
- A board game based on A Game of Thrones, a novel now adapted to an HBO series
- 3–6 players take command of the Great Houses of Westeros
- Updated second edition, incorporates elements of past expansions
- Features a streamlined rulebook and updated art
- Includes welcome new enhancements like Tides of Battle cards and player screens
Scythe is another beautiful board game similar to Risk. It’s a long-winded and challenging strategy game perfect for Risk lovers searching for something a little different.
The idea of this board game is that it takes place in an alternate 1920s Europe in which the universe is governed by “The Factory,” a hyper-capitalist city-state that wages war on surrounding factions.
Each player in the game represents an Eastern European faction fighting for life, with the objective of their side emerging victorious, similar to Risk.
Due to the tactics required and the reasonably severe subject matter, Scythe can run up to two-to-three hours from start to finish, accommodate two-to-five players, and is best suited for those aged 14 and older.
- It is a time of unrest in 1920s Europa. The ashes from the first great war still darken the snow. The capitalistic city-state known simply as “The Factory”, which fueled the war with heavily armored mechs, has closed its doors, drawing the attention of several nearby countries
- Lead your faction to victory, building mechs, working the land, and exploring the mysterious factory, all while protecting your territory from the mechs of other encroaching factions
- Explore the alternate-history of 1920 plus Europe through Jakub Różalski's stunning artwork
- For 1-5 players
- Plays in 90-120 minutes
6. Fortress America
Fortress America is a fictional strategy game set in the future when every country outside of America attempts to conquer the United States. The invaders must strive to take over American cities as soon as possible before the United States gets too powerful to resist them.
It’s a One–vs–Many game in Fortress America. One player represents the defensive Americans, while the other three select the Soviets, Asian Peoples Alliance, and Central American Federation as the assaulting armies.
If the Americans can successfully repel the invaders, their super laser will gradually grow greater strength, allowing them to shift the tides of war.
- Milton Bradley Game Master Series
- 2-4 Players
It’s challenging to overlook Diplomacy while looking for games like Risk to play in your leisure time. 1959 marked the launch of this popular game, at the same time as Risk. Furthermore, the board appears to be quite similar to the one you get in Risk.
The action of this game takes place before the outbreak of World War 2. This game aims to teach you how to negotiate with other players as diplomatically as possible. There are no dice to roll, and there is no element of chance.
The players representing the game’s powerful nations spend each round betraying and establishing alliances with other players. You’ll be able to negotiate deals with other players throughout your discussions or utterly violate the agreements you make with them.
Diplomacy is one of those games where your true personality will shine, so be shocked if you have a few enraged participants at the end of the night.
- COOPERATIVE TABLE TOP BOARD GAME: A strategy board game of international intrigue, trust, and treachery, set at the turn of the twentieth century, prior to World War I
- NEGOTIATE AND OUTWIT: Through negotiations, alliances, and intrigue, you'll seek to expand your empire over pre-World War I Europe. Success hinges not on the luck of the dice, but cunning and cleverness
- A STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMECY: Play as one of the great powers of Europe prior to World War I: Great Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, Germany, Italy, Russia or Turkey
- OVER 300 PLAYING PIECES: The Avalon Hill Diplomacy strategy game includes 315 playing pieces including 84 fleets, 84 armies, and 147 control markers
- IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE: Experience an exciting night of tabletop gameplay. This strategy board game with a European political theme is for 2-7 players, ages 12 and up, and takes about 6 hours to play
Dominion is a famous board game that brings together board game fans all over the World, and it’s a beautiful option for those seeking something that requires strategy and thought but isn’t nearly as long and challenging as Risk.
Dominion is a card game whose aim is to win by purchasing the most estates and accumulating the most victory points. With each round, you may earn money, perform activities, and purchase new cards, allowing you to play defensively or aggressively.
Because there are so many different expansion packs available for Dominion, you may play another game every time you play. It’s also a lot more manageable than playing a long-winded game like Risk, with a game lasting closer to an hour (and even shorter depending on the number of participants).
- 2nd Edition features updated cards, artwork and streamlined rules
- Tactical game for 2-4 Players
- 30 minute playing time
- Lots of expansions available to add depth and complexity
GodStorm is technically a sequel to Risk, but it’s so different that I think it’s worth checking out on its own. Even if you’ve never played Risk before, a game of GodStorm may be pretty entertaining.
The game’s premise is mythology–based, which gives it a unique spin on most historical conquest and war games. It’s worth mentioning, though, that this game contains almost 400 playing pieces, so it’ll take some time before you feel like you’ve mastered it.
In GodStorm , two-to-five players take on the roles of legendary gods from many civilizations, battling it out to discover who will earn the title: King of the World!
While traveling across the board makes it simple to conquer different sections of the globe, the turmoil of Atlantis makes it conceivable for your soldiers to sink into the ocean. For ages ten and above, it’s a fun, inventive, and highly creative game.
- For 2-5 Players
- It is a new, stand-alone Risk extension with mythology theme
- Use legendary gods from 5 ancient cultures to determine who will reign supreme
- Who will rule the Ancient Earth-and beyond? Enter a time of myths and legends
- The game is for 2 to 5 players who use legendary gods from 5 ancient cultures to determine who will reign supreme
10. Small World
Small World is a fantastic alternative for you if you enjoy Risk but wish it had more fantasy flavor.
It’s a fun game with a shorter duration (around 45-90 minutes depending on the players) than many others on this list, making it more doable for people searching for a strategy game but don’t want to dedicate countless hours of their lives to it.
The game’s idea is simple: you’re in a fantasy world with a slew of other species, including giants, dwarfs, and wizards, but the planet isn’t big enough to handle everyone. As a result, the game’s objective is to build the universe so that you are accommodated while your opponents and other players are not.
Small World is a fantastic game for two-to-five players and is appropriate for ages eight and up. It is a little less complicated than some of the other games on this list.
- For 2-5 players.
- 40-95 minutes of play time.
- Designed by Philippe Keyaerts as a fantasy follow-up to his award-winning Vinci.
- Vie for conquest and control of a world that is too small to accommodate everyone.
- Features two double-sided game boards, one for each of four possible player configurations.
This selection of Risk-style board games provides competitive and entertaining alternatives for everyone. Whether you love fantasy, sci–fi, history, or to add to the collection, these board games are the best modern Risk alternatives that all provide their twist in strategies that will keep you, your friends, and your families holding on to the edge of their seats!