The Final Gamble
game design by Kim Kanger
Dien Bien Phu depicts the decisive battle which took place in a distant jungle valley in northern Vietnam. It was a battle where both sides knew from start would be a final showdown. The French were desperately seeking for an opportunity to bring the Viet Minh main battle force into battle on French terms. Dien Bien Phu was a trap where superior units and weapons would crush the Viet Minh onslaught. Viet Minh felt they could not win the war unless they managed to upgrade their mode of fighting into a full scale war. The French were too strong in the delta but in a distant valley they had gathered almost all their best units without whom France would lose their will to continue. Dien Bien Phu was the place where France would be dealt a crushing defeat.
It was a battle of preparation, assault and reaction. Viet Minh dug approaching trenches before assaulting the French strongpoints. The overwhelmed French defenders were forced to react by throwing reserve battalions into the pyre in order to save their position. The game will be fast and furious. The Viet Minh player will try to make the French defense collapse, and the French player will try to make the Viet Minh steam run dry and force them to stop.
History Coming Alive
Posted by Carsten on Sep 14th 2019
It sounds so easy: take the valley (if you are the Viet Minh player) or defend the valley (if you are the French player). But after a few turns, you will see that it's not that easy. The game comes with a lot of depth, every move has to be carefully planned. Resources will run low. Moral will degrade. And then the weather changes... And if you compare the gameplay with some historic accounts you will see that history is coming alive on your table.