Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Nephite & Lamanite Wars

In 1974 the church included several games in their seminary curriculum. One of these games was Nephite & Lamanite Wars (boardgamegeek link). It was an historical war game/simulation based on the wars and battles that took place in the Promised Land as related in the Book of Mormon.

As they were part of the seminary curriculum the games/simulations were meant to be opportunities for helping students learn. There are both objectives and indicators associated with each game. For example, the first game/simulation is based on the encounter Captain Moroni had with Zerahemnah.

The objective is stated as the following:
Students will realize that the strength of the Nephites in battle was a result of their faith in Jesus Christ an obedience to his commandments.

Indicators are that the students should be able to:
1. Relate the account of the battle between Captain Moroni's forces and those of Zerahemnah.
2. Explain the cause of the Nephites' involvement in the war.
3. Contrast the preparation and objectives in the Nephites and the Lamanites for war.
4. Explain the Nephite superiority in war.

In a game, one player plays as the Nephites and one player plays as the Lamanites. Each player receives a number of pieces, each of which represents individual Nephite/Lamanite armies. Each army has a combat strength and a movement factor.

On a players turn he may move his armies and then attack (Lamanites go first). The game baord is a map consisting of a number of hexagons. Here's a remake of the board, done by Chris Hansen (the one in the seminary manual was black and white):

Any number of armies can attack on a players turn. This is done using the Combat Resolution Table. Players create a proportion (attackers combat strength to defenders combat strength) and look up the odds ratio on the table. After which the spinner is spun and a second table is used to determine the final result of the attack.

There are also follow-up sections that take students into the scriptures and ask them questions that get more into the particulars of the situations and those involved. For example, there are questions about Captain Moroni:
What kind of man was Captain Moroni?
How would you like to serve under such a man?

All in all this seems like it would be a lot of fun! I'll post again about it once I sit down and play.

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Sleepy said...
December 7, 2010 at 12:57 PM

I have a set of the game components but no instruction sheet. Do you have one that I could get a copy of?

Mike said...
December 7, 2010 at 1:18 PM

Sleepy, send me your email address (mikedrys@gmail.com) and we'll see if we've got what you are looking for.

Walt von Kampen said...
January 9, 2014 at 2:43 PM

Does anyone know if where there are complete sets of this game to buy. I remember playing it as a teenager in seminary and it was a lot of fun.


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