*Before reading this review, I wanted to say I was hesitant to review this, but Tyler loves this game. You can play this version of Stratego on any Stratego board, you will just need to take out the extra pieces and bombs. The rules can be found in a rough translation to English here.
Adaptation of the original Stratego for the Hertog Jan Breweries in the Netherlands. The historic theme of Duke Jan is applied to the game. Players only have 12 pieces. The object of the game is to conquer the tower of the other player. Each turn, a player moves a piece. When a player lands on a space where a piece of his opponent stands, the players identify their pieces. Usually, the highest in rank wins and the other piece is removed from the game. Some pieces, however, have special abilities.
The duke must die, much like the game The Duke..... or eliminate all moving pieces.
We played best-of-seven, I won 4-1. Tyler is always hesitant to attack and find my duke when he has a piece advantage, which gives me a chance to regroup. The archer is a huge come-from-behind piece. There is a lot of technique to this game, and with so few pieces, sometimes not moving pieces is as much part of the plan as moving pieces. Moving too many pieces gives away where your Duke might potentially be.
For me, it's not so much about the pieces but about the lack of pieces. With so much open space on the board, there is a ton of room for different strategies from game to game.
The archer is my favorite piece. It completely changes the game and strategy from regular Stratego. In regular Stratego, there is no piece that shoots from two space away. It is the most powerful piece because it can take out any piece from two spaces away.
The Good, The Bad, The Rating
I am a lifelong Stratego player, since the age of 8. I have played every incarnation of this game, from the original, to the revised Fire and Ice edition, to Legends, and even a Legacy version that I made myself. I have to say this is by far the best version. The open space, the Archers, the reduced time of play, everything works in this game for me. I wish Jumbo would put this version out here in the US.
This is the first game I have given a 5 rating to. I like original Stratego a lot, but the addition of the archers and the subtraction of the other pieces down to twelve total pieces make the game much faster, but with more strategy.