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Subject: Ikusa vs. Conquest of the Empire rss

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doug draa
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Hi Folks!
It's time to buy a new game again and I just can't decide.
It's a toss up between "Ikusa" or "Conquest of the Empire"

I've played "Shogun" before(about 12 years ago). and I've read the rules to "Conquest of the Empire".

I find both games very attractive and Conquest is €20 cheaper over here.

My concern is mostly based on the guys I play with. I understand that Ikusa doesn't have the politcal elements like Conquest and sadly even though the guys I play with are all 10x smarter than I am, they are extremely rules shy. When we play "Wings of War" or "Silent Death" it always has to be with just the basic rules. :-(
And even though I'm not a rules junkie this gets old pretty fast.
So are the games even comparable?
Is "Ikusa" better for a rules "lite" crowd but still challenging and playable with the full rules?

Since I can only afford one of these games I'd like to hear some opinions.

take care.

Doug
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Will (JR) Todd
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Well, from the sound of your group, Ikusa might be a better fit, but Conquest Of The Empire has two sets of rules, one with the political actions and one without. Actually there are two different games included in Conquest of the Empire.
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doug draa
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Hi Will,
Thanks! I know that Conquest has two set of rules. My group doesn't have to know that though! I'd tell them that "Conquest of the Empire II" is the regular game!

Doesn't Ikusa also have a basic and "normal" game?
This is a tough decision! I've also been taking a look at "D&D Conquest of Nerath". I grew up on Avalon Hill Hex and Counter games, but I can't get any of my gaming group to even look at any of that kind of stuff. cry
 
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Will (JR) Todd
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I don't have the Ikusa rules in front of me but I think there are just the "rules" and then there are a few paragraphs of "quick-play" and two player rules in the back.

I've been looking at Conquest of Nerath also but don't really know too much about it yet.

Sorry to hear about your group. It must be a little frustrating since they would probably really enjoy some of these games.
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M Whaley
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Conquest has two sets of rules: the original version with the "fixed" battle system, and a more Euro friendly version with cards. The original rules are probably a little lighter than Shogun/Ikusa's. I never played Conquest's Euro rules, so I can't really comment on those.

Ikusa (or Shogun as I know it) has one major set of rules, with minor "quick start" variations to speed up the beginning of the game. I don't think they are that complex, especially compared against a game like Hannibal: Rome vs. Carthage. It's probably on par with Axis and Allies in terms of complexity.

I have the original and reprint versions of both games, and my clear preference is Shogun. Your group's preference may be different. I personally find Shogun a far better game for a number of reasons. First, Conquest has static starting positions and static turn order, whereas Shogun is variable on both accounts. This makes Shogun drastically more replayable. I'm not sure what you mean about Conquest having more politics, as I find a ton of intrigue and back stabbing in a game of Shogun. People who take it too seriously might not enjoy being ruthlessly betrayed in either game, but I find Shogun tends to reward the ruthless more than Conquest. Add in a ninja and hidden mercenary Ronin, and I would play a game of Shogun over Conquest almost any day. I find some of Conquest's original rule mechanics a bit clunky, especially inflation, but it is really up to your individual tastes.
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doug draa
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Thanks guys! I broke down and purchased "Ikusa" on-line this morning.
If I was wealthy,had lots of time and gaming friends I'd probably just buy evdrything!
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Alexandros Masmanidis
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Hi Doug,

i think you made the right choice.
Having both games, my personal view is that:

The original rules of "Conquest of the empire" are quite strait and simple, but lack depth of gameplay and choices of strategy. At the same time the game drags way too long with meaningless continuous battling, where you end up going back and forth.

The "euro" style of the same game, is something totally different. Richer, with a decent variety of strategic choices. It includes alliances, politics, warfare etc.
I would never play the original again. Love it, although it's a little bit more complicated.

Ikusa, was probably the best choice for you and your group, since it has a "touch" of the original C.O.T.Empire but is also enriched with "surprise elements" such as the ninja and the ronin, which increase the level of uncertainty (of the outcome of a battle) and give a feel of "fog of war".
Finally the battle system resembles to "axis & allies" which i find way better than C.O.T.Empire (which resembles to Memoir 44).
The rules are quite clear. After one play you probably can figure out 99% of how the game flows.

Can you share your thoughts of the game after a couple of plays? I'd love to hear them out.
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Alexandros Masmanidis
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Or... not.
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