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Subject: First impressions after one play from Finland rss

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Antti Koskinen
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I suppose every nation has its own historical moments of elections. We had the heated 1956 elections where Kekkonen beat Fagerholm by two votes and was president almost the whole Cold War period (and even today nobody knows, who was the double-crosser that gave Kekkonen the crucial vote). The Kennedy vs Nixon 1960 election has many of the same elements and therefore it's really easy to be excited about the game.

I picked up my copy of the game yesterday right after it had hit the shelves of my local game store. I must say that I was impressed by the quality of components of the game. The board thick and strong and cards feel very durable. Illustration is also great and supports the theme well. And most importantly the game has the best rule book I have ever seen - after one readthrough I was able to understand most what was going on on the board and the examples in the last pages clarified the rest.

Tonight we sat down with a friend to play a test game. My friend choose to be Kennedy and I was glad to take the side of Nixon. After 30 min rules explanation we began the game. Kennedy went campaining east in the first few rounds and got quite a nice hold on the region. Nixon was more interested in the others parts and general issues and gained momentum. Kennedy won the debates 2-1 and got a stronger hold in the west states which definitely gave him clear advantage for the last few rounds.

But as it sometimes happens, last two rounds proved to be really hard for Kennedy. Nixon used the nastiest of ways to hold back the Kennedy campaign which led to a couple of misjudgements from the Kennedy side. By the time of the election day Kennedy had lost momentum and Nixon could easily get the electoral votes to guarantee victory (288-199).

I really enjoyed the game as did my friend too. One could feel the frenzy of the campaigning and the joy of winning the elections (and the emptiness after loosing I suppose). The only negative comment on the game is that the information in blue states on the board was hard to
read (my eyes hurt after looking at the bleary numbers of the electoral votes of in the state boxes). Couple of plays more and I'm able to give my final assessment of the game but after first play it's a solid 9.


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Jason Matthews
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It is extremely cool to have this game reviewed from FINLAND! I didn't imagine that would happen quickly (if ever). While I was in college and the Cold War was still on, I got the chance to visit Hellsinki on my way to the Soviet Union. It was a beautiful place populated by the most amazing looking Nordic people I have ever seen. But what really surprised me was finding a game store with Avalon Hill stuff and everyone speaking perfect English. I guess I shouldn't be so surprised by the review.

Anyway, thanks for the kind remarks about the game.

Jason
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Antti Koskinen
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There's going to be the second largest boardgame con (Helcon) in Helsinki first weekend of November where 1960: Making of the President is surely going to be one of the most anticipated games.

You really shouldn't forget the small but ethusiastic boardgaming communities in the outskirts of civilized world
 
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Pete Chace
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Let me second that - as an American I am pleasantly surprised that people from other countries would be interested in a game about an American election. Of course I love Die Macher and I've never even been to Germany.

Coloring the states as red or blue on the map is a long standing American tradition. For whatever reason the Republicans are red and the Democrats are blue. This explans the map - now that you mention it the numbers on the blue states are kind of hard to read.

2 votes? That's incredible. Out of how many cast?
 
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Philip Thomas
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So when are we going to get games involving Finnish elections?
 
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Kris Verbeeck
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JasonMatthews wrote:
It is extremely cool to have this game reviewed from FINLAND! I didn't imagine that would happen quickly (if ever). While I was in college and the Cold War was still on, I got the chance to visit Hellsinki on my way to the Soviet Union. It was a beautiful place populated by the most amazing looking Nordic people I have ever seen. But what really surprised me was finding a game store with Avalon Hill stuff and everyone speaking perfect English. I guess I shouldn't be so surprised by the review.

Anyway, thanks for the kind remarks about the game.

Jason


I don't know what to make of this reply. It gets funnier every time I read it.

Some words
extremely cool
Cold War
Hellsinki
Most amazing looking Nordic people I have ever seen.


But seriously, where can I find this game in Belgium. Went to essen but I was told that all the copies where sold within minutes. (slight exaggeration)

 
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Ville Inkiläinen
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bismark66 wrote:
2 votes? That's incredible. Out of how many cast?

The final result was 151-149. (Wikipedia)
 
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Antti Koskinen
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It would be nice to see a serious election game on Finnish elections but unfortunately it would be more like a standard Euro game - 3-5 players area influence game with some twists but still a bit dry and colourless.

The only exception would be the election of 1956 which would most certainly be like Mr Jack. Players are trying to guess the identity of the traitor, who gave the critical vote to Mr Kekkonen.

Philip Thomas wrote:
So when are we going to get games involving Finnish elections?
 
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Jason Matthews
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KrisVerbeeck wrote:


I don't know what to make of this reply. It gets funnier every time I read it.

Some words
extremely cool
Cold War
Hellsinki
Most amazing looking Nordic people I have ever seen.


But seriously, where can I find this game in Belgium. Went to essen but I was told that all the copies where sold within minutes. (slight exaggeration)



Well, as you can see Kris, cold and "good" have a strong correlation here in the United States. That's why we love Finland, Christmas and Ice Cream.

Jason
 
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Jason Matthews
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bismark66 wrote:

Coloring the states as red or blue on the map is a long standing American tradition. For whatever reason the Republicans are red and the Democrats are blue. This explans the map - now that you mention it the numbers on the blue states are kind of hard to read.


Pete, one odd side note on this point. Blue States and Red States have solidified into our lexicon, but almost exclusively due to the 2000 elections. Before that, networks did not really follow any standard convention. Some used green or yellow for one of the parties. In the classic electoral map of 1960, the colors are actually reversed. Of course, this is so ingrained at this point, we went with the contemporary, albeit anachronistic palette.

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