From the Box:
Land of the Free is a simulation of the political turmoil in America during the period of the Great Depression, 1930-1941. The economic devastation caused by the financial irresponsibility of the Roaring Twenties created massive job losses, business failures, and a crisis of confidence in the political institutions of the day, including democracy itself. Many people sought a solution to their problems through simplistic ‘set the world right in ten lessons’ schemes such as the Technocracy or Social Credit movements, but others put their trust in radical political movements of the far left and right such as the German-American Bund organization, the Wobblies, and the Communist Party. Still others learned the value of simple corruption and demagoguery, as Governor Huey Long did in Louisiana.
“In the game, two or three players represent extremist political organizations trying to gain power through covert means, at regional and (when they are strong enough) at Federal level. A process of patient organization and propaganda will result in an accumulation of influence, which will translate into power, which has its own rewards. It is also possible to try and muscle one’s way into power by intimidation and strong-arm tactics.”
Historically, this game lies somewhere between realism and fantasy. Players try to build committees and fronts, gain control of the local police, aim to gain political control of the states, and eventually influence the national elections for President. Along the way there are mobs, vote-rigging, and assassinations – Maybe Upton Sinclair will be elected governor of California this time . . .
The game comes with 280 counters and an 11”x17” map of the continental United States divided into 20 regions (combinations of individual states in to regions with names like “Minneconsin” and “Kennesee”.)