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Road to the White House
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We all know that presidential candidates make and break the rules. Now players can too when they play this realistic campaign boardgame that simulates the race to become the President of the United States. Using all the campaign tools available to real candidates and their managers, players plot strategies, plan travel, raise money and react to events outside of their control. Unique to Road to the White House are the fictitious presidential candidates who have the strengths and weaknesses of a typical crop of aspirants.
Road to the White House is really three games in one; a "light" version that is quick to learn and play, a version that incorporates positions on issues and the use of dirty tricks, and an advanced version that allows players to develop their own candidates in a complete simulation of a presidential primary campaign.
Award-winning Milwaukee Journal political cartoonist Bill Sanders is the illustrator, and former National Desk Editor of the Chicago Tribune Jim Musser is the designer.
Travel the Road to the White House. Your family and friends will love the chance to outshine this year's Presidential hopefuls and those of years to come.
- 25 stereotypical candidates
- 25 issue cards
- 120 event cards
- 24 pawns
- game board
- score sheets
- four special dice
Average Rating: 4.7 in 3 reviews
Each election year a new campaign game is released and many get the fanfare of magazines devoted to reviewing games. Unfortunately, the promises made by these reviewers are as trustworthy as the real candidates. This game is fun and has different levels of complexity. It's the best I've seen in this genre.
With several different levels of complexity and rules for creating your own candidates, Road to the White House is an unbeatable political game. Move your candidate and his 'surrogates' (other well-known figures who campaign on your candidate's behalf) from city to city collecting votes. Spend money on advertising, travel or (shame on you!) dirty tricks. Raise the issues your candidate is strongest on; cheer and cringe as news events reward and punish you for your candidate's views. At the end, you win the states you have the most votes in, and whoever tops 270 electoral votes wins. A fine, underappreciated Mayfair game.
Road to the White House is a very well-designed game; it's obvious a lot of time and care went into crafting a campaign game that would reflect the actual choices real candidates face. The three different levels of complexity make this game accessible to light game players who don't want to get bogged down with issues and political junky-type game players (like me) who love the issues! The stereotypical candidates are quite humorous and add a lot to the game's flavor--but I recommend designing your own after a couple of plays so you can really enjoy yourself. After all, if you designed your candidate, you'll feel like you own them, and you'll really care how well they do!
The game only has a few small flaws, and they are all related to the Civil Rights issue component of the advanced rules game.
- The Civil Rights deficiency is dumb and needs to be chucked. As it stands in the game, a liberal candidate like Gloria Stone gets beat by conservative candidates in Massachusetts and Hawaii because she doesn't have Pro-Catholics or Pro-Ethnics positions. This rule can really skew both game balance and realism, and you really are better off chucking it.
- Catholics should not be an issue in the game anyway--it's pretty much faded from public life as Catholicism has become pretty mainstream.
- Positions are either for or against a particular people group. However, it is the rare person in politics today who is (at least openly) 'Anti-Hispanics' or 'Anti-Black'. However, there are many political people who are 'anti-open borders' and 'anti-affirmative action'. So these should probably be re-named. Nobody wants to play a candidate who's anti-people (well, I hope not anyway)!