22 January 2012

1960 Wasn't a Good Year

Many times we get a game because the reviews are great, or it's near the top of the rankings, or we love the theme. This was the case for 1960: The Making of the President. However, this one fell flat for us. Now before you stop reading and starting posting comments about how insane I am, please let me finish. I love history and I especially love American History, and the 1960s hold a special place in my heart. Mostly because there was so much going on during that decade. Therefore, I thought this game would be a perfect match.

1960 is about the 1960 US Presidential Election between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy. Each player selects the role of one of the candidates. The rest of the game you are trying to gain control of states by campaigning and debating against your opponent. The game comes to it's dramatic conclusion with the election and the electoral votes are tallied up, with the majority holder winning the election and thus the game.

1960: The Making of the President is a good game. It is a card driven area control game at it's core and I am told that it is very similar to Twilight Struggle. This game faltered with us in a couple of areas. First, the length, the game takes 90-120 minutes to play. And our first play was taking even longer as we were getting our barrings. My wife said that she does enjoy longer games, but would rather play these longer games with more players. If we are playing a two player game she wants it to only last about an hour. Second, there is a steep learning curve as this is a fairly heavy game. If you have played a couple games and your opponent has not, you will most likely beat them. Therefore, this game works great if you are playing against the same person every game; yet if you are playing against different opponents it is not going to be much fun for you or your opponent. Finally, the theme is one that does not appeal to everyone. You have to enjoy history and politics to truly appreciate this game.

Although this game wasn't for us. This game might be for you.  If you enjoy a longer game with some depth, then this could be a great game for you and your spouse. If you enjoy a great theme in political history, then you may enjoy this one. If you like a good area control game then you probably going to like this one. Although this one did not work for us, it is still a good game and could be worth exploring. Here is a good article about the election, and here is a video review of the game by Castelli Reviews.

You can find me on Board Game Geek & BoardGaming.com with the User ID: jmoslander

1960 was purchased by GWT.


  1. 1960 also didn't work for us, though we love Twilight Struggle. My main problem with 1960 / Twilight Struggle is pretty straightforward - In TS you learn how a regular turn goes on the 1st turn and every turn afterwards you're dealing with the exact same rules to achieve what you want. 1960 has these bizarre debates and election phases which really break up the flow / make the game much harder the first few times you play it because you have no intuition how these stages will go until you get to them.

    1. Yeah I really didn't like the debates. And the end scoring of all the states takes forever. I haven't played TS, but would like to give it a go at some point.

  2. Trade or sell your copy to me! I want to play it! :)

  3. I would but I already sold it at an auction a few months back. Sorry.