Easy to Read Risk Board Game Rules

Quick reference to the Risk Board Game rules. We cover the essential instructions and directions to get your game started quickly.

Game Summary, Video How to Plays, Reviews

Find out about Risk

Suitable for 2 – 6 players | 120 – 120 mins duration | Recommended age 10+ | Game complexity: EASY Genre: Territory Building,Wargame Solo game mode: No Co-op: No Online Version: No
Click here for the official rulebook

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What is the goal? #

Risk is a board game of military strategy where you are battling to conquer the world. As you conquer continents, your military strength grows. To win, you must deploy careful strategies to attack others, defend yourself on all fronts, and control vast continents.

However, overextend your armies across the globe and there is a risk that your enemies might attack and take control!

Game setup  #

Game Components #

  • 1 Tri-fold Game Board
  • 5 Dice: 2 white and 3 red
  • Deck of 56 RISK cards
  • 6 Sets of armies, each a different color

Game Board #

  • The game board is a map of 6 continents divided into 42 territories.
  • Each continent is a different color and contains from 4 to 12 territories.
  • The numbers along the bottom (southern) edge of the board indicate the number of armies you will receive for a set of cards you trade

The Armies #

There are 6 sets of armies, each containing 3 categories of army pieces:

  • Infantry (worth l)
  • Cavalry (worth 5 Infantry), and
  • Artillery (worth 10 Infantry, or 2 Cavalry))

Start the game by placing Infantry pieces; later in the game, you may trade in 5 Infantry for 1 Cavalry, or 2 Cavalry (or 1 Cavalry and 5 Infantry) for 1 Artillery.

Risk Cards #

The 56 RISK@ Cards: 42 marked with a territory and a picture of Infantry, Cavalry, or Artillery l 2 “wild” cards marked with all three pictures, but no territory l 12 Secret Mission ca

Note: The 12 Secret Mission cards are used only in the Secret Mission RISK variation. Remove them for all other games.

Setup #

RISK demands careful planning before you start to play.

Setup begins with Initial Army Placement.

Initial Army Placement – Starting Armies #

2 – see 2 player rules

2 player setup #

  1. You and your opponent each select a complete set of armies.
  2. Selects a third set to be “neutral.”
  3. Take 40 Infantry pieces from each of the 3 sets and claim territories in the following manner:
    • Remove the Secret Mission cards and the 2 “wild” cards from the RISK card deck.
    • Shuffle thoroughly and deal the cards, face down, into 3 equal piles. Both you and your opponent choose a different pile. The remaining pile is “neutral.”
    • Place one of your Infantry onto each of the 14 territories shown on the RISK cards in your pile. Your opponent does the same.
    • Then place one “neutral” Infantry onto each of the remaining 14 “neutral” territories.
    • After every territory on the board has been claimed, you and your
      opponent take turns placing your remaining armies:
      • Place 2 Infantry onto any 1 or 2 of the territories you occupy.
      • Then place 1 “neutral” army onto any “neutral” territory you want

To complete the game SETUP:
4. After all the armies have been placed on the board, return the two “wild” cards to the RISK card deck, shuffle the deck and start to play.

3 to 6 player setup #

3 –  each player starts with 35 Infantry

4 –  each player starts with 30 Infantry

5 –  each player starts with 25 Infantry

6 –  each player starts with 20 Infantry

Roll one die to decide who places 1st infantry pieces.
The player who rolls the highest number takes one Infantry piece from their pile and places it onto any territory and claims it.

Starting from the left of the first player, everyone takes their turn to place one army to claim any unoccupied territory.

Continue until all 42 territories have been claimed

After all 42 territories are claimed,

  • Each player, in turn, places one additional army onto any territory he or she already occupies.
  • continue until everyone has run out of armies
  • there is no limit to the number of armies on a single territory

Risk Card Draw Pile #

Shuffle the RISK cards (remove the Mission cards) and place it, face down, next to the board.

Whoever placed the first army takes the first turn.

Gameplay #

Each player’s turn consists of three steps:

  1. Getting and placing new armies;
  2. Attacking, if you choose to, by rolling the dice;
  3. Fortifying your position.

Getting and placing new armies #

At the start of each turn, you will calculate the number of armies to add to your territories based on :

  1. Number of territories controlled;
  2. Value of continents controlled;
  3. The value of the matched sets of RISK cards you trade in;
  4. The specific territory picture on a traded-in card

Number of Territories controlled #

At the start of every turn (including your first):

  • count the number of territories you currently occupy
  • divide the total by three (ignore any fraction by rounding down) and the answer is the number of armies you receive
  • Place the new armies on any territory you occupy

Example: 11 territories = 3 armies 14 territories = 4 armies 17 territories = 5 armies

You will always get at least 3 armies on a turn, even if you have fewer than 9 territories.

Value of Continents controlled #

  • In addition, at the start of your turn you will receive armies for each continent you control.
  • To control a continent, you must occupy all its territories at the start of your turn.
  • The chart in the lower left-hand corner of the game board indicates the number of armies you receive

Trading in Risk Cards for Armies #

When you trade in sets of cards, you gain additional armies based on the total number of sets anyone has traded in so far.

To keep track of sets traded-in, keep traded-in cards face down under the bottom edge of the game board to mark the value (in armies) of the next trade

The first set traded in – 4 armies

The second set traded in – 6 armies

The third set traded in – 8 armies

The fourth set traded in – 10 armies

The fifth set traded in – 12 armies

The sixth set traded in – 15 armies

After sixth, each set traded in is worth additional 5.

Received 2  bonus armies for any traded in cards that show pictures of your occupied territories. Bonus armies must be placed onto that particular territory. You can only receive maximum of 2 bonus armies.

Attacking #

  • After placing your armies, you decide if you wish to attack and capture a territory.
  • If  you decide not to attack, pass the dice to the player on your left.
  • You may still fortify your position, if you wish (see fortifying position).

If you choose to attack:

  • You may only attack a territory that’s adjacent to yours or connected to it by a dashed line
  • You must always have at least two armies in the territory you’re attacking from
  • You may continue attacking one territory until you have eliminated all armies on it, or you may shift your attack from one territory to another
  • attacking as often and as many territories as you like during one turn

How to attack in Risk #

  1. Announce both the territory you’re attacking and the one you’re attacking from
  2. Roll the dice against the opponent who occupies the opposing territory
  3. Before rolling, both you and your opponent must announce the number of dice you intend to roll, and you both must roll at the same time.
  • You, the attacker, will roll 1,2 or 3 red dice: You must have at least one more army in your territory than the number of dice you roll.
    Hint: The more dice you roll, the greater your odds of winning.
  • Yet the more dice you roll, the more armies you may lose
  • The defender will roll either 1 or 2 white dice: To roll 2 dice, he or she must have at least 2 armies on the territory under attack.
    Hint: The more dice the defender rolls, the greater his or her odds of winning-but the more armies he or she may lose

2 player Attacking Rules #

On your turn, you may attack any territory adjacent to one of your own.
Whenever you attack a “neutral” territory, your opponent rolls to defend
that “neutral” territory.
“Neutral” armies cannot attack and never receive reinforcements during
the game.

How to decide a battle in Risk #

  1. Compare the highest die each of you rolled.
  2. If yours (the attacker’s) is higher, the defender loses one army from the territory under attack.
  3. But if the defender’s die is higher than yours, you lose one army from the territory you attacked from;

If each of you rolled more than one die, now compare the two next-highest dice and repeat the process.

* In case of a tie, the defender always wins. The attacker can never lose more than 2 armies on a single roll

Capturing Territories #

  • When you defeat the last opposing army on a territory, you capture and control that territory
  • To do so, move into the newly controlled territory, at least as many armies as the number of dice you rolled in your last battle.
  • You must always leave at least one army behind on the territory you attacked from.

During the game, every territory must always be occupied by at least one army.

Ending your attack. You may end your attack(s) at any time. If you have captured at least one territory, first take the top RISK card from the draw pile.

Eliminating an opponent #

 If during your turn, you eliminate an opponent by defeating his or her last army on the game board, you win any RISK cards that player has collected.

If winning them gives you 6 or more cards, you must immediately trade-in enough sets to reduce your hand to 4 or fewer cards, but once your hand is reduced to 4,3, or 2 cards, you must stop trading.

But if winning them gives you fewer than 6, you must wait until the beginning of your next turn to trade in a set.

Note: When you draw a card from the deck at the end of your turn (for having won a battle), if this brings your total to 6, you must wait until your next turn to trade-in.

Fortifying your position #

  • You may, if you wish, end your turn by fortifying your position.
  • You are not required to win a battle or even to try an attack to do so.
  • To fortify your position, move as many armies as you’d like from one (and only one) of your territories into one (and only one) of your adjacent territories.
  • Remember to move troops towards borders where they can help in an attack!
  • In moving your armies from one territory to another, you must leave at least one army behind.

How do you win? #

  • The winner is the first player to eliminate every opponent by capturing all 42 territories on the board.

2 player win condition #

  • To win, be the first to eliminate your opponent by capturing all of his or her territories.
  • You do not have to eliminate the “neutral” armies.
  • In most cases, all “neutral” armies are eliminated before the end of the game. If this happens, play continues until one player defeats the other

Video Walkthrough #

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