Ukrainian Crisis & The Little War


Game design: Brian Train
Map Art: Tim Allen & Jose Faura
Hex Number: 9
Duration: 2 hours
Players: 2
Solitaire Suitability: Medium
Theme: Current Events
MSRP: $55.00

Prolific designer Brian Train (The Scheldt Campaign) has created a number of games on unusual, under-gamed topics, often utilizing unique and innovative mechanisms. Hollandspiele is proud to be bringing two of Mr. Train's most interesting designs to your table in a single box.

Ukrainian Crisis simulates the Russian intervention in Ukraine beginning in 2014. Diplomacy, propaganda, and international prestige play just as big a part in the proceedings as military force, if not more-so: it's entirely possible for the situation never to result in armed conflict at all. Each of these various elements feeds into and off of the others, resulting in a complex and decision-rich strategic situation. Event cards provide opportunities to turn things to your advantage, or to collapse in folly. The game is driven by the allotment of Resource Points chits. These chits are divided into three categories that each provide a random range of Resource Points: Minimum (1-4), Medium (2-5), and Maximum (2-12, trending toward 7). Each player has a finite number of each type of chit. This not only means that the commitment of chits among different activities within a given turn is important, but that as the game progresses, the choices you made on previous turns limits the range of options available for the end-game. While the decisions are rich and nuanced, the game system is relatively straightforward, making it a great introduction into "pol-mil" gaming.

The Little War is a smaller game about a smaller conflict: the week-long 1939 border war between Hungary and Slovakia. This is more of a straight-forward military engagement, but that doesn't mean it's any less interesting, clever, or innovative. The Little War is driven by an ordinary deck of playing cards (which you'll have to provide yourself). On each turn, six cards are drawn from the deck. One player gets the Hearts (movement) and Diamonds (combat), the other the Spades (movement) and Clubs (combat). The luck of this draw might favor one player this turn, but this will result in it being more likely to favor his opponent on the next.

Together, these two games provide hours of entertainment for adventurous gamers.

  • (2) 11" x 17" mapsheets
  • (176) 5/8" counters
  • (1) Player Aid Card
  • (18) Event Cards
  • (4) six-sided dice
  • 16-page rulebook

You can purchase the Print-and-Play version here.