a game by Merle Zimmermann
Copyright (c) April 29th, 2000
Free for sharing..
You played war with a deck of cards. now it is time for the twentieth century. no
more wimpy infantry wars. now is the time for the atomic war..
No one knows which highschool student stole the codes for the atomic arsenal.. but
it has enemies... and they got the codes too. which country will die the most tonight ?
I chose the first goal, but you might come up with others.. As I do not have the
equipment to keep track of which cards came from where, I did not try out the second
- Have the fewest casualties at the end of the game.
- Inflict the most damage on the other players ("enemies").
- Std. Deck of Playing Cards
--Although the game will work with almost any pile of cards as long
as you don't have too few.. This is an ideal time to pull out an
"I Doubt It" deck.
- at least one other person..
- About ten minutes to reduce Earth into an atomic wasteland.
The ranking of the cards is as follows:
(Ace when defending)-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-Jack-Queen-King-(Ace when attacking).
Turns proceed in whatever order you usually use when playing.
If this is the first time you have played a game, then have the players sit in a
circle and the turns proceed to the player on your left (to find left, hold up both
hands with the thumb extended at a right angle to the fingers. the one that has an
'L' shape is your left hand..).
- Shuffle the deck of cards.
- Arrange the players in some sort of order.
- Give each player five cards to start with.
If you start off without any cards, the game may become unusable, but,
given the right group of people, might work anyway.. I will test this out
Starting with a different number of cards is another possibility for
- Assign one player to go first.
The ace "Space Defense System" is both low and high in this game; I will explain more fully later on.
The turn consists of one of two possible activities.
After the current player finishes executing its action, the turn proceeds to the
- Restock your arsenral.
- Draw a card from the deck and put it in your hand.
Note that this will be impossible to do when the deck runs out..! When it does,
your only option is to attack (and you must do so) !
- Attack some other player.
- Attacking is somewhat tricky, and I gave it its own section.. scroll down a bit.
In a nutshell, you play a single card, a pair of the same rank, or a triple, quadruple,
etc. etc. A chance is given to the defender to protect itself, but it is necessarily
more difficult to defend against larger numbers of missiles at once.
You attack by placing cards down on the table between you and your chosen victim.
All of the cards played must be of the same rank; suits are irrelevant in this game.
The ace "Space Defense Systems" is high when attacking in this game.
Examples of Attacks:
You could play any of the following combinations, to name a few.
- 4 of Clubs.
- 8 of Diamonds and 8 of Spades.
- Q of Hearts, Q of Diamonds, Q of Clubs.
- 7 of Spades.
If the victim does not care to defend, then all of the cards go onto its damage pile,
where each card, regardless of rank, inflicts one million casualties on the innocent
I usually put the damage pile right in front of the player who is hurt; that way it
is easy for the opponents to size each-other up. (this simulates feedback from
newspapers and TV newsreports on the general destruction..)
You can defend against (and nullify) an attack by matching your antagonist's cards with
an equal number of a lower rank. All cards played must match, though. The ace is the
lowest card in the deck for purposes of defending.
Examples of Defending
Note: that you can't defend against a card by playing one of the same
rank. That would make defence too easy.
- You are attacked with a 6 of Clubs.
You defend by playing the 4 of Hearts from your hand.
- You are attacked by a pair of 9s.
You defend by playing a pair of 4s.
- You are attacked by three 2s.
You defend by playing three Aces "Space Defense".
- You are attacked by two Aces "Space Defense System".
You defend by playing any pair (even Aces !)..
End of Game:
End the game when one of the players runs out of cards and there are no more left
in the deck.
Count up all of the millions of dead from the damage piles, and whomever has the
smallest number is the winner for the day.
Note that you can always redeal if some people are dissatisfied with the results.
- Bribes are good for getting other people's attention, and most people do not complain
when they receive a large wad of cash from a fellow player.
- If you wait for a long time before attacking, you can crush your adversaries with
large numbers of low card quadruplets and things.
- If you attack first, then you will run out of cards and the game will end
before your opponents can strike back !
- If you attack with low cards you will get through.
- If you attack with high cards your opponents will run out of low cards and you
will be safe from attack yourself.
- You will lose if your opponents gang up on you. Always keep a friend around (or play
with only two people !)..
- Atom War is the only game where the sun rises many times in a day. Even if you are
losing, you can still take out whomever is in the lead.
Explanation of Rationale for Aces:
The Space Defense System is great for stopping missiles, but lasers are not so good for
blowing up New York when all you can destroy at a time is an area the size of a hotdog
stand. This is why the Ace is good for defense but not for attack.
Explanation of Rationale for Playing a lower card to Defend:
Just think of the cards as reaction times; the Defender with a faster reaction time
then his attacker can countermand the weapons to explode over an uninhabited area
This was a game by Merle Zimmermann..
write me a letter and I will write you back !