The game

'Titan' is a classic 1-6 player parlour game by Jason B. McAllister and David A. Trampier. It was launched by Avalon Hill in 1980 and has long since run out of print and become hard to find. Still, if you have the chance to try it out, do so by all means. It can be hard, lengthy and somewhat unrewarding in the beginning, when you need advice with almost every move you make, but it is worth the effort. Just don't expect an easy-going pastime; you will have to think and concentrate. If you're into that, this is the game for you.

The game relies mostly on strategy and partly on luck. Gameplay takes place on two planes: One is the masterboard, or mainboard, on which stacks (or legions) of cardboard fantasy creatures move around, trying to muster better and stronger units. The rules of moving are complex, but account for a great deal of the charm and strategic depth of the game.

A game of Titan in progress:

Titan masterboard

The other plane are the battlelands. Whenever two enemy legions meet, the mainboard field in which they encounter becomes represented by the corresponding battleland. Both legions are removed from the mainboard and placed on the battlefield. The battle is fought out by throwing dice and moving cleverly, making use of the terrain's assets and avoiding its handicaps. The winner takes it all - 'it all' meaning his remaining creatures, which are returned to the mainboard, and a number of points according to the defeated legion's value.

Some Titan battlelands:

Titan battlelands

Titan Whenever a player reaches a multiple of 100 points, the power of his main character is enhanced. This character is the Titan, the player's representative in the game. When the Titan falls, that player is out of the game. The Titan, like the other creatures, is part of one of the player's legions on the mainboard, and it is part of the strategy not to let the other players know too early on where your Titan sits. Depending on your own strength and that of the other players, it can be essential to keep your Titan concealed and out of battle. On the other hand, the Titan can become very powerful by leveling up, so once he has become strong enough, you may want to throw him in the front line and simply let him eat your enemy for lunch.

'Titan' is also a beautiful game, simply but ever so tastefully done. This may not interest everybody, but to me, part of the delight when playing a game, as with reading a book, comes from the special look and feel of it. Browse through the links to get some impressions.

Thanks to André, who introduced me to this gem of a game!

Resources Bruno Wolff's Titan Home Page Tor Gjerde offers alternative sets of battlelands and new masterboard variants. David Thibault's Battlelands Construction Set David Desjardin's strategy guide Balrogs, Ents, and a GM program

Colossus A Java implementation of Titan by David Ripton. Play against the AI or network opponents.


The masterboard

I haven't found a good replica of the masterboard yet. Here are some views of it. Anyone coming up with something better shall be the object of great enthusiasm, thankfulness, and pizza-offerings.
Original board
Titan outlands board
Board for Colossus (a computer version of Titan)

Creatures and markers

As on Chee-Wai's site (no longer on line).
All characters
Creatures I
Creatures II
Legion markers

My battlefield construction set

These are adaptations from the battlefield construction set by David Thibault (see links above). I wanted a battlefield to fit on a Din A 4 sheet, so I sized everything down quite a bit. Played around with the colours too to match them to those of the masterboard.

Field elements

Empty grid

My hazards

Bramble, green
Bramble, olive
Cliff, black
Cliff, brown
Slope, brown
Slope, umbra

My battlefields


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