RISK – Review
Follow Genre: Strategy, Board game
Developer: Hasbro
Publisher: Ubisoft
Platform: Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360 (soon), PS3 (soon)
Tested on: Xbox One

RISK – Review

Site Score
Good: Great 'port', Easy to learn, Iris is a nice addition
Bad: Frame rate drops and lack of different combat animations get dull/annoying
User Score
(4 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.8/10 (4 votes cast)

RISK, an all time classic that still scores well on local board game evenings, with friends or even local shops. That being said, the game has always been quite time consuming, especially to set everything up. Now RISK has been ‘ported’ to the next gen consoles, thanks to the cooperation between Hasbro and Ubisoft. It seems they succeeded in keeping the renown board game charming, even in its digital form.



Across the planet, resources are diminishing, conflicts are rising and as to be expected war is a direct result. Fight your enemies, conquer their territories and become the supreme ruler of planet Earth. That’s pretty much it. World domination does not really need an elaborate plot. Tanks and bombs will do the trick.


It’s hard to convey the appeal of a board game to the digital world, but Ubisoft has done a great job in making RISK appealing in a slightly different way. You will still be presented with a world map, but one that resembles one of those digital maps you see in science fiction movies. Vivid colors display your faction and a digital zoom happens when you commence an invasion attempt, or if you are on the defending side. With how the map is portrayed, the game feels as if you’re watching a projection, which adds up to the whole tactical planning atmosphere.

Battle animations look basic but pleasing. Sadly, these don’t have that much variation and thus they will become rather dull after a few matches.

Whilst the game looks great for a digital board game, RISK suffers from a lot of frame rate drops. During the combat sequences, the game tends to lag a lot, which hampers the overall smoothness of the rest of the game. These frame drops occur nearly every battle, making it quite annoying after some time.



Sound wise the game offers you a fun soundtrack that goes well with your global domination but as it is often the same tune, it might get repetitive for some.

Accompanying you on your mission of submitting the world to your command is ‘Iris’ and AI, that comments on certain actions with advise, reports and at other times she simply states the obvious. Overall it’s a fun implementation to show that the developers added something extra to this digital board game.


RISK is a pretty straightforward tactical/strategy game. The standard formula of the game consists out of three different modes, namely world domination, capture all the capitals and complete certain special missions. The first two modes often take longer than the secret missions.

Before starting the game you’ll be able to choose how many players participate (3-5), if they are human or AI controlled players and for the latter, their playing style. You’ll also be able to set several different options such as selecting your starting area, the possibilities of alliances and so on.

During the actual ‘match’, your turn consists out of three phases, namely the deployment phase, the battle phase and the reinforcement phase. At the beginning of your turn, during the deployment phase you will be able to deploy more troops in the regions under your control in order to fortify them or build up a decent army to start conquering your enemies.


When everything is deployed, you will enter the battle phase, where you can start choosing neighboring countries/areas in order to expand your territory. You can only do an invasion with one of your own controlled areas, if the number of troops that are stationed there is higher than one. When the battle begins, you will be able to choose how many dice (1-3) you roll, in order to see who comes out as the superior force. When the numbers are known then your highest dice will face off against your opponents highest dice and the lowest will do the same. When your throw is the same as your opponent, you will lose when attacking. When defending, you will be the one who reigns supreme in case of a tie. Overall the authentic mechanic feels great, even on your console. Nonetheless, when losing a lot, you can’t help but wonder if the AI controlled opponents sometimes have an advantage over you. If you feel like speeding things up, you can also choose to opt for an ‘automatic’ battle phase. Sadly, this means if you keep losing against a territory, you will keep fighting until your troops are depleted, in the area you chose as the aggressor.

When you are done conquering or attacking your foes, you will enter the phase where you can choose to reinforce one of your areas, with the troops of one of your other (connected) areas.

At the end of your turn you will earn a card, that has a certain amount of stars on it, if you conquered an area during that turn. These stars can be used at the beginning of your upcoming turn(s) to receive extra troops. The more stars you can trade in, the more troops you will be able to receive. Conquering entire continents and more areas will also grant you more troops to deploy at the beginning of your turn(s).


In many ways, the digital version of RISK is the same as the classic one but you’ll be able to speed things up for the AI opponents and deploying etc will also go a lot faster than in ‘real life’. This makes it great for those who love RISK but have less time to spend.

When opting for the secret missions mode, you will notice one flaw when playing locally. When you wish to know your mission, you will have to ask your friends to cover their eyes or leave the room a second, for you to write it down or remember it. Other than that, the mode proves to be quite authentic as well.
On top of the timesaving way of playing the game, you will also notice that the game actually plays really smooth. Everything is quite clear and make the game look a lot more simple than you’d think if you have never player RISK before. A great way of introducing players to the game.

If you’re tired of playing against computer controller opponents or your friends locally, you will be able to go online and duke it out with strangers. Of course, the smoothness of the gameplay is then totally up to how fast your opponent is able to finish his turns.


Whilst authentic board games will still have a bit more charm than digital version, Ubisoft did a great job with bringing RISK to the digital world. The rules prove to be easy to learn, misplays are impossible to perform and the overall graphical style proves to be appealing. Even with the frame rate drops, the game proves to be highly entertaining.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.8/10 (4 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
RISK - Review, 8.8 out of 10 based on 4 ratings

1 Comment

  1. MC_JP
    February 11, 2015, 23:32

    + Fun party game to do with friends
    + When your friend (hint hint) is the lead commander and helps everyone out, it can make fun scenes!

    – The PC is a goddamn cheater
    – Dice rolls feel to scripted

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