Tag Archives: board games

What’s The Deal With The Different Bond Board Games?

The two famous board games that waver between Connery’s face and some “unknown one” vary in price depending on who you talk to. Generally speaking, most 60s board games—unless they’re terribly unique—are in the $40 range. My understanding is the the “non-Connery” is the actual rarer game that appeals to game collectors but the Connery is, of course, preferable to 007 fans (and we’re bigger spendthrifts (-: ).

My understanding of what happened is this: In those pre-Star Wars days, the concept of tie-ins and the royalties they could generate weren’t as well defined as they are now.**

Thus when Connery’s face began showing-up on EVERYTHING imaginable, he claimed—and rightly so—that his face could only be used to market those goods directly connected to the EON films or the films themselves. He was not “James Bond” personified, ergo a generic Milton Bradley 007 game—one not tied to the promotion of any EON property—was not legally entitled to bear his likeness, despite Milton Bradley otherwise having been granted license by.

I think this is also why you get certain products using just a silhouette, etc. Check out Corgi’s original Toyota 2000 sometime; they use Aki’s photo, but a drawing of a Connery-like character. Coincidence that Connery had announced he was leaving the series? Probably not.

BTW, I haven’t examined enough of those games to be sure, but to the best of my knowledge, MB only retouched the box; a good many still had Connery-style boards inside. The boards were likely made ahead of time and would have been costly for MB to destroy.

Finally, I always thought it a bit odd that they redid the girl. My guess is that the first one having looked so much like Honor Blackman, they decided to repaint both on the off chance she chose to bring suit, too.

–Alan Stephenson is one of the world’s top 007 collectors.

**Most of the other big character promotions prior to that revolved around cartoon characters—like Superman or Mickey Mouse—who couldn’t sue or people like Hopalong Cassidy (Willaim Boyd) who were better positioned to exert personal control over their image.

Our Guide To Role Playing With Mr. Bond

James Bond Basic Game, Q Branch and Thrilling Locations

The James Bond 007 Role Playing Series isn`t complete without The Basic Game Book (it also includes an introductory adventure, but you`ll need to buy a 6 sided die and a 10 sided die on your own). The book is 160 pages long and is packed with vital information for the Gamemaster as well as individual players. A special section includes a new villianous organization called TAROT (Technological Accession, Revenge and Organized Terrorism). Q Branch has a sophisticated rundown of all the equipment, vehicles and gadgets used by James Bond. Thrilling Locations helps you set the mood of your game by detailing the most luxurious hotels, yachts, trains and more that James Bond or any other character can come in contact with.

Even if you weren`t interested in playing the games, The Basic Game book and the Thrilling Locations book are fascinating and educational reads all in themselves. The Basic Game book has extensive background on 007`s different skills, the women he encounters, the villians he thwarts and the henchmen he kills. Chapter 15 gives a background history of M.I.6, and Page 118 goes into detail about how James` parents died, plus other background information on him. Chapter 11 goes into great depth detailing everything you need to know about Bond`s equipment…his snowmobiles, weapons, jets, cars, yachts, gadgets, and more.

Thrilling Locations continues your journey into 007`s glamourous life with descriptions of elegant restaurants, luxury hotels, and fanastic traveling accomodations.

It contains 12 pages of full color photos, and over 100 black and white illustrations “that bring the world of first class travel…alive.” Thrilling Locations takes you to such places as the palatial Casino de Monte Carlo, The MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, The Oriental Hotel in Bangkok, The Mandarin Hotel in Hong Kong, Tavern On The Green in New York, and aboard The Orient Express. Ever want to understand the games 007 plays in the casinos? Chapter 1 is devoted to nothing but that. Learn how to play Roulette, BlackJack, Craps, Baccarat and Chemin De Fer. Both Thrilling Locations and The Basic Game book take you into the luxurious, secret and mysterious world of James Bond that got you so interested in the first place. A definite collectors item!

Dr.No: “Welcome to the island of death. Something is terribly wrong on the island paradise of Jamaica. The alway reliable M.I.6 station head has failed to make his report and has since disappeared. What terrible secret is so important on Jamaica it is worth mudering an M.I.6 operative? All clues point to the existence of a mysterious figure unknown to the British Secret Service-someone called Dr.NO. Where is Dr.NO located and could he prove to be a threat to the rest of the world?”

The Dr.NO Adventure package contains: An illustrated 48 page Gamemasters Guide with complete instructions on running an adventure; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 8 Mission Sheets that provide clues and maps for the players; a standup screen containing a map of Jamaica and the floorplan of Dr.No`s lair!

The Man With the Golden Gun: “The next golden bullet has your number on it. Francisco Scaramanga-the Man With The Golden Gun-is the world`s consumate assassin. His fee: one million dollars. His signature: a golden bullet. His specialty: a single shot to kill his victim. Now Scaramanga is after a brilliant scientist and his Solex Agitator, and with it he will be able to create the ultimate firearm-a solar gun that uses the energy of the sun as its projectile. The master killer must be stopped before he can unleash his new golden gun against the free world. ”

The Man With The Golden Gun Adventure package contains: An illustrated 48 page Gamemasters Guide with complete instructions on running an adventure; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 8 Mission Sheets that provide clues and maps for the players; a stand up screen containing maps of the locations where the enemy is waiting.

Octopussy: “Udaipur, India. The City of Dreams. Somewhere in this opulent city the mysterious tradesmen known as Kamal Khan is bringing to fruition a plot that will throw the world into chaos. Elsewhere, in her island palace on Lake Pichola, the beautiful Octopussy is scheming to multiply her enormous store of priceless jewels. Meanwhile, on another continent, one of the great treasures of Tsarist Russia-the Faberge Egg-is being slowly transported by a deadly circus towards an unknown destination.”

The Octopussy Adventure package contains: An illustrated 48 page Gamemasters Guide with complete instructions on running an adventure; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 8 Mission Sheets that provide clues and maps for the players; a full color wrap around folder complete with a portfolio of the major non-player characters.

A View To A Kill: “One of our 00 agents has disappeared! M.I.6 operative 004 is missing. His assignment was to infiltrate deep into the Soviet Union in order to retrieve a stolen microchip that is vital to England`s national defense. 004 never arrived at his rendevous point, and now someone must be sent into the frozen Siberian wastelands to find him. But the stolen microchip is just the tip of the iceberg-there is a conspiracy afoot that could disrupt the world`s economy. Is there enough time left to track down the ruthless mastermind and stop his earth shattering plot? ”

The A View To A Kill Adventure package contains: An illustrated 48 page Gamemasters Guide with complete instructions on running an adventure; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 8 Mission Sheets that provide clues and maps for the players; a stand up screen containing a map of the San Francisco Bay Area and floorplans of the Major Villian`s chateau.

ASSAULT! Published by Victory Games in 1986, this game uses the famous movie assault on the secret rocket base in “You Only Live Twice”.The James Bond Assault Game creates a unique opportunity for role players and simulation gamers to come together in a fast paced exciting game of commando combat! One player, assuming the role of the deadly Karl Ferenc Skorpios and his villainous gang, must successfully launch his rocket from the secret volcano base. The other player controls James Bond, Tiger Tanaka, Kissy Suzuki, as their intrepid ninja band must make the perilous descent from high atop the base to foil the evil plan. Individual pieces, representing the major characters and their troops, battle across the multi-level floor of the base, engage in fire combat and hand to hand struggles as the moments tick away until the launch . Easy to understand rules allow players to quickly begin playing the four scenarios, and rules for solitaire and gamemaster play add to the game`s diversity.

You Only Live Twice: Back of Beyond “Q Lab security has been breached. In the chill of pre-dawn London, a top secret file was stolen from Q Branch despite the tight security of M.I.6 headquarters. The files, containing chemical warfare secrets from Nazi Germany, were passed on before the thief was arrested. The culprit-one of the most trusted and loyal Q Branch technicians! Why has he turned against Queen and country? Who wields such power that he can force a loyal Briton to turn traitor? What havoc does th threaten to wreak with the stolen information?”

You Only Live Twice II: Back of Beyond takes you from London, England to Syndey, Australia. Your thrilling adventure will take you to such exotic locales as Ayers Rock, The Outback and Walkabout. If you survive.

Bond author Raymond Benson designed this game, and you can tell he has a real love of both James Bond and Australia (his debut novel, Zero Minus Ten, also took place in Australia). You Only Live Twice II is an illustrated 28 page GameMaster`s Guide with complete instructions on running the adventure; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 6 Mission Sheets that provide clues and maps for the players; a stand up screen illustrating the Major Villians fortress and much, much more. This is my second favorite game (only because it`s slightly shorter than the others).

For Your Information Game Suppliment. Contains new rules, and special features such as info on brainwashing and amnesia, adventure generation system, more NPCs and locations, background on real-world intelligence organizations and more.

Goldfinger II: The Man With the Midas Touch: Goldfinger`s back, he`s mad, and he`s out for revenge. It seems he didn`t die from Operation Midas Touch (Goldfinger 1). He was severely hurt, yes, but he is alive, if only living in an iron lung. One thing that hasn`t changed is his love of gold, and he`ll do anything, and kill anyone, to get what he wants.

With Goldfinger 2, you`ll jump from Mexico City to the exotic canals of Xochimilco, to the Great Teothicuan Pyramids of ancient Mexico, to Pamplona, Spain, and all the way to Ankara, Turkey.

Goldfinger II: The Man With The Midas Touch is an illustrated 48 page GameMaster`s Guide with complete instructions on running the adventure alone or as a sequel; an Agent`s Briefing Dossier from M.I.6 with 8 Mission Sheets that provide clues for the players; a stand up screen containing maps of a subterranean cave and the enemy`s secret base and much, much more. This one`s my favorite!