Risk and the 1500s

Essay by joeyv586High School, 10th gradeB+, December 2009

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Risk is a strategy game that simulates war during the 1500s. In many ways it resembles actual war. For instance, when a player attacks a country there is usually a reason they are doing so, and when a country attacks another country they usually have a reason. The strategies used in game play are similar to real life war strategies, such as, building up troops in one area so that it would be easier to defend and easier to attack a weaker country. Alliances are a large part of the game as well; align yourself with the right person you could become unstoppable.

These aspects of war remind me of the Peloponnesian war between the Athenians and Spartans. The Athenian system of allies is known today as the Delian League. It formed in the 5th century BC, during the Persian Wars, to defend Greek city-states along the Aegean Sea from Persian attack.

The alliance was largely maritime, and its members provided the Athenian navy with ships or troops. Greek victory in the Persian Wars enhanced the power and prestige of Athens. In time, members of the Delian League paid tribute to Athens in money rather than in ships or manpower.

The Spartan system was the Spartan Confederacy. This alliance was not tributary in the same way as the Athenian network of allies, and finance was always a serious Spartan weakness that sometimes imposed distasteful political compromises. Of the Spartan allies, by far the most important was Corinth, whose fleet was large and whose naval tradition was long-standing. Corinth, a trading city-state with far-fetched interests, was a major rival of Athens.

The First Peloponnesian War, which was ended by the Thirty Years’ Peace, preceded it. The war lasted from 431-405 BC and was split into 3 separate parts, the Archidamian War...