by Jim Wallman
LONDON 21 March 2015
This is a megagame about international relations, conflict and high level diplomacy.
It also involves mysterious and threatening aliens from outer space.
The basic premise is that unknown aliens are increasingly visiting earth to abduct, investigate, terrorise and ultimately to subvert and take over or perhaps render earth weak enough to invade.
The main part of the game is about how humanity as a collection of political entities decides to react to this.
At least you don't see them f*cking each other over for a percentage... - Ripley
Game play is in part about humanity gaining technological knowledge by shooting down alien craft and/or capturing aliens alive or dead and key items of their technology. That knowledge can be used to improve the economy (selling alien tech to corporations), develop improved counter-measures to the alien threat or to upgrade national defence.
Additionally, no human nation is precluded from taking the view that its better to be on the winning side from the start, and to be welcoming their new Reticulan masters.
This will involve high level diplomacy.
Earth remains a politically complcated place, and at the same time as responding to the obvious threat of aliens, human governments will have the full range of human on human political rivalries, conflicts and crisis - none of which can be safely ignored.
And the Aliens will be getting up to the usual unspeakably devious and alien activities. Abductions, probes, infiltration, cattle mutilation and terror raids cannot be ruled out.
Humans get to upgrade their capabilities or economies
by researching captured alien equipment and personnel and thereby gaining
knowledge. These can be shared or held depending on how much the
human players cooperate. Humans also have to decide how to use their resources
to build better bases, upgrade existing weapons and so on. And who knows
- maybe bring the war to the enemy?
The game will be on quarterly turns so decision-making will be strategic - primarily about resource allocation, doctrine, policy making and, of course, diplomacy. Team members of a typical 5-player human team will consist of a Head of State, Deputy Head of State, Foreign Minister, Military Chief and Top Scientist - each responsible for different aspects of the crisis.
Players do not have to sign up as a complete team, we have many people who join as individuals and smaller groups - we always aim to create a healthy mix of newcomers and experienced players where. we can.
9 AUGUST 2014: Main teams (The number of human teams will depend
on overall numbers).
European Teams: UK, France, German, Russia, Italy, Spain
Americas Teams: USA, Canada, Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico, Argentina
East Asia Teams: China, Japan, Indonesia, Australia, Vietnam, South Korea
Central Teams: Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, India
Corporate Teams: Lexcorp, GMIC, Advanced Industrial Mechanics, Wimpey-Fergusson Corp.
United Nations Team (Secretary General and staff)
Global Media (6-9 players)
NEWS 13 Aug 2014: Unfortunately WTS2 is now full. However you can go on the waiting list, or put your name down for WTS3 in July 2015.
NEWS July 2014: Due to its popularity Watch The Skies 2 is likely to be a much larger and more complex game than Watch The Skies 1. The re-designed game will involve many more national teams than before and more in-depth play in each continental region, as well as an entirely revised Aliens Game. Keep Watching the Skies!
NOTE ON WATCH THE SKIES ONE : If you would like to get a flavour of some aspects of a Watch The Skies game, then take a look at this video, made by Shut Up & Sit Down.
ANOTHER NOTE ON WATCH THE SKIES : Don't worry about spoilers in the video or having played in WTS-1. The scenario in WTS-2 is completely different. Make no assumptions about the aliens, their motivations or objectives.
And there are Watch The Skies T-Shirts available here
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