Forbidden Kingdom (strategic simulation)

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Forbidden Kingdom (strategic simulation)
The Playing Board
DesignerOriginated by Pnoble805
PreparationCreate resources
Time90 minutes
No. of roles/players4 + Gamesmaster
Archive of Simulations and Games for the Enhancement of the Learning Experience
The individual resources in this archive come from diverse sources. They have been brought together into this archive in a project supported by

Forbidden Kingdom is a simulation of decision making quandries that might be faced in the Communist Party in the People's Republic of China. The simulation involves the four major power factors in China today -- government officials, the military, social activists and non-governmental organizations, and entrepreneurs and commercial interests.

Players do best in the simulation when they go along with the Party's guidance, but the game is designed to force at least one round of non-compliance with the Party. Disagreement with Party guidance must be universal to achieve change. Those who disagree and are in the minority when they do so will lose some or all of their political power.

Cooperation is difficult under the circumstances, especially when players/teams enthusiastically support their group's interests. Winning the game is difficult in the best of circumstances. Since all players/teams not in disgrace are members in good standing with the Party, so regime change puts those in disgrace suddenly into power (and vice versa).

Forbidden Kingdom (Simulation)[edit | edit source]

Players[edit | edit source]

There are four players (individuals or teams):

  • Government (National, Provincial and Local Officials)
  • Military (People’s Liberation Army, Related)
  • Social (Activists, NGOs)
  • Entrepreneurs (Business)

Gamemaster[edit | edit source]

There must be a gamemaster to administrate play.

Objective[edit | edit source]

To reach and then maintain your presence in the Inner Circle (yellow and red center of the board) at the end of the game.

Set Up[edit | edit source]

  • Players/teams sit in front of their respective playing positions.
  • Players/teams place their game markers on their respective green Position A on the game board.
  • The gamemaster places an indicator piece on each 0 position on the Stability/Regime Change status boards.
  • Each player/team receives a similar Party Guidance sheet.
  • Each player/team receives a unique brief, which provides recommendations on issues and voting.
  • Each player/team receives at least three blank index cards and a writing implement with which to cast secret ballots.
  • There will be three rounds, with two policy issues and one event decided in each twenty minute round.

Play[edit | edit source]

1 - STRATEGY AND NEGOTIATIONS: Each round, players/teams have up to five minutes to review and strategize their individual policy positions, then up to fifteen minutes to meet with other players/teams – individually or in groups – to negotiate and seek support for their respective positions.

  • HINT: While only the current round can be voted on, policy votes for all three rounds are negotiable from the first round.
  • REMEMBER: Negotiations are non-binding. There are secret ballots.
  • HINT: Players/teams should attempt to meet with all of their counterparts each round.
  • HINT: Unanimity, or Party loyalty in cases of disunity, is important to a player’s/team's advancement in this simulation.

2 - VOTE SUBMISSIONS: Each round, players/teams privately note their individual final policy positions (A or B) on the index cards provided and hand them in to the gamemaster. Players/teams in the Disgrace Box are ineligible to vote but may participate in discussions.

3 - VOTE TABULATION: Once all ballots are received, the gamemaster will determine which two policies were approved by the Legislature for a given round in the following way:

  • The Party’s policy position wins if ALL or SOME of the votes on an issue agree with the Party recommendation.
  • The alternative policy option wins ONLY in the case where ALL votes oppose the Party recommendation.

4 - ADVANCEMENT: To advance one space, a player/team must have voted with BOTH issues that passed the legislature in a given round.

  • From Position A (yellow or green), a player/team would go to green Position B
  • From Position B (yellow or green), a player/team would go to green Position C
  • From Position C (yellow or green), a player/team would go to the Inner Circle. Those in the Inner Circle at the end of Round 3 are the winners of the simulation.

5 - DEMOTION and DISGRACE: Those voting in the minority against a Party recommendation in any given round will be required to step back one space. (Stepping back TWICE IN A ROW lands you in the DISGRACE BOX.)

  • From green Positions A, B or C, the player moves to yellow Positions A, B, or C, respectively.
  • From yellow Positions A, B or C, the player moves to the Disgrace box.
    • Note: Those in the Disgrace Box are disenfranchised (cannot vote) for one round but may participate in negotiations. Those in Disgrace Box are rehabilitated after one round by having their game marker placed on green Position A and their vote restored.

6 - STABILITY/REGIME CHANGE STATUS: Players/teams are urged to keep track of the Stability/Regime Change scores for Face, Authority, Wealth, and Populace, as a dip to the lowest negative number on any status board will cause Regime Change and the end of the game. There are two ways that Stability/Regime Change status numbers can change:

  • POLICY DECISIONS: After policy issues have been approved by the legislature, the gamemaster calculates their effect on Stability/Regime Change status using the gamemaster's secret Issues Key. The gamemaster announces the changes and may direct that the indicators be moved accordingly.
  • EVENTS: At the end of Rounds 1 and 2, a chance Event occurs which causes changes to Stability/Regime Change status. Each player/team rolls a die representing the status in that player’s/team's corner of the board. Players/teams should anticipate the potential of negative results and strategize accordingly.
    • A die roll of 1 causes the Event to be very negative (-2).
    • A die roll of 2, 3 or 4 causes the Event to be negative (-1)
    • A die roll of 5 causes the Event to be neutral (0)
    • A die roll of 6 causes the Event to be positive (+2)

7 - REGIME CHANGE: The Party loses power if Stability/Regime Change status reaches negative five (-5) on any of the status boards. At the occurrence of regime change, all players on Positions A, B, C, or in the Inner Circle are immediately moved to their respective Disgrace Boxes. Those in Disgrace Boxes are moved to the Inner Circle and win the game. This ends the simulation.

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