An official version of Risk [$4.99] just hit the App Store, and as I mentioned in the roundup from the recent EA event, this really seems like too little too late from the massive game developer. When third party software first graced the iPhone, it wasn't hard to see the potential that the touch interface had for board games, and this potential only grew as Apple implemented push notifications which allowed developers to create some extremely robust asynchronous multiplayer experiences. An absolutely fantastic example of this in the classic board game arena is Carcassonne [$4.99] which we detailed in our review not too long ago. In Carcassonne, developers The Coding Monkeys masterfully duplicated the board game while providing more single player and multiplayer features than I think anyone was expecting when we first heard of the game.

In Risk: The Official Game, EA brings a fully licensed version of Risk to the App Store with futuristic looking graphics, a decent soundtrack, and all the same army fortifying dice rolling gameplay that has been evolving for the last 50 years through various iterations of the board game. You can either play single player against AI opponents, or play local multiplayer with up to 6 players on a single device, or up to 4 players with their own devices via WiFi or Bluetooth. There's a decent amount of stat tracking and achievements in game, but that's where the bells and whistles stop.

The problem with Risk is that the brand name is so powerful that I think that most people who are downloading it are just thinking, "Oh, finally, Risk for the iPhone!" without being aware of the many other better alternatives which aren't exactly the same as Risk, but scratch the same strategic dice rolling itch-- Often with much more content, options, and game modes. If this applies to you, here are just a few of the better Risk knock-offs available on the App Store:

Lux DLX 2, $4.99 - This world conquest game which recently was updated to version 2.0 sports universal compatibility between the iPhone and iPad, single device multiplayer, challenging AI, and tons of new maps to play that can be downloaded within the game for free. If you want to try Lux before buying, there are two different free versions, Lux Touch, and Lux USA which are also universal apps.

Generals - Online Global Conquest!, $2.99 - Where Generals lacks in multiple maps it more than makes up for in the online multiplayer department. Like most Risk-like games, you can play locally on one device with human or AI opponents and Generals also allows you to organize online games over WiFi or 3G. Currently, games are played in real time online, but the developers are working on an update to add push notifications to allow for up to 20 games to be played simultaneously as well as more online game modes. The free version has ads and no multiplayer, but will give you a good idea of what you're getting in to.

Strategery, $1.99 - Also a universal app, Strategery boasts single player, single device multiplayer, and online multiplayer with push notifications. My favorite thing about Strategery is that it randomly generates maps of four different sizes, which always keeps things fresh since you need to develop new strategies on the fly instead of just going by your old standby of building up armies in Australia. Strategery Lite is also available, which doesn't have any ads but lacks a few gameplay options and online multiplayer.

Dominion, $1.99 - Like the other games already mentioned, Dominion has local and online multiplayer with either classic world domination mode or objective based games. It has multiple maps and a full featured online component with asynchronous push alert powered play, player statistics, and a bunch of other goodies. Unfortunately, Dominion isn't universal so if you don't want to run the game pixel doubled on your iPad you will have to spring for Dominion HD.

Unless you really really need to play the official Risk game for some reason, I'd really give any of the four previously mentioned games a spin if you're looking for some awesome online world conquest action. At least for me, board games are exponentially more fun when you're playing with real people, and if the success of Words With Friends [$2.99 / Free] is any indication, most tend to agree.

  • Brinkman

    I'm not a fan of any of those art styles. I'd love to have a turn based WW2 style Risk or Hex game. Guess I'll have to wait.

    • Fredrik

      You should also check out World in War, it's a turn based strategy game set in WW2 Europe. http://www.worldinwar.com

  • Brinkman

    I'm not a fan of any of those art styles. I'd love to have a turn based WW2 style Risk or Hex game. Guess I'll have to wait.

    • Fredrik

      You should also check out World in War, it's a turn based strategy game set in WW2 Europe. http://www.worldinwar.com

  • Klaus

    Strategery, my choice

  • Klaus

    Strategery, my choice

  • y0rsh

    For WW2 style Risk you can get Blood&Honor.
    I'm quite surprised it did not get mentioned TA's article.
    http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=57713&highlight=Blood+Honor

  • y0rsh

    For WW2 style Risk you can get Blood&Honor.
    I'm quite surprised it did not get mentioned TA's article.
    http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=57713&highlight=Blood+Honor

  • Josh

    I love Strategery. It is the best one out there.

  • Josh

    I love Strategery. It is the best one out there.

  • wilef

    vConqr is another Risk clone I got free awhile ago (now 3.99). Very good version.

  • wilef

    vConqr is another Risk clone I got free awhile ago (now 3.99). Very good version.

  • Filazafer

    Blood & Honor is actually the best.

  • Filazafer

    Blood & Honor is actually the best.

  • meme1337

    Conquist is also out there and it's quite good imho

    • http://mayblogmaynot.blogspot.com Maniacfive

      I second this. If you have an iPad I would recommend conquest. Works especially well as a table game.

      • clear

        Totally, I tried a couple and Conquist is the best

  • meme1337

    Conquist is also out there and it's quite good imho

    • http://mayblogmaynot.blogspot.com Maniacfive

      I second this. If you have an iPad I would recommend conquest. Works especially well as a table game.

      • clear

        Totally, I tried a couple and Conquist is the best

  • Vidya

    hodapp why do you have to be a douchebag? You're like "Risk has Wifi multiplayer" and then you say about Generals

    "Where Generals lacks in multiple maps it more than makes up for in the online multiplayer department. Like most Risk-like games, you can play locally on one device with human or AI opponents and Generals also allows you to organize online games over WiFi or 3G. Currently, games are played in real time online, but the developers are working on an update"

    Ok so, how does this make it better than Risk? They both have Wifi online, no other maps and the "developers" are both working on updates.

    I'm sure there are other games better than the official Risk, but why come across sounding stupid when you can't even present solid reasons why the others are better?

    For what it's worth I like the other games but I like the official Risk better simply because there are more opponents to play with online and that's really the only true test of skill. AI in Risk games is kinda boring since you're not outsmarting anyone.

    • Eli Hodapp

      You are playing a different game if you think you're playing a Risk game with online multiplayer. The official game only has local multiplayer, which will connect with other devices via Bluetooth or WiFi. All the other games have excellent online multiplayer.

      • http://mayblogmaynot.blogspot.com Maniacfive

        Pwnd

  • Vidya

    hodapp why do you have to be a douchebag? You're like "Risk has Wifi multiplayer" and then you say about Generals

    "Where Generals lacks in multiple maps it more than makes up for in the online multiplayer department. Like most Risk-like games, you can play locally on one device with human or AI opponents and Generals also allows you to organize online games over WiFi or 3G. Currently, games are played in real time online, but the developers are working on an update"

    Ok so, how does this make it better than Risk? They both have Wifi online, no other maps and the "developers" are both working on updates.

    I'm sure there are other games better than the official Risk, but why come across sounding stupid when you can't even present solid reasons why the others are better?

    For what it's worth I like the other games but I like the official Risk better simply because there are more opponents to play with online and that's really the only true test of skill. AI in Risk games is kinda boring since you're not outsmarting anyone.

    • Eli Hodapp

      You are playing a different game if you think you're playing a Risk game with online multiplayer. The official game only has local multiplayer, which will connect with other devices via Bluetooth or WiFi. All the other games have excellent online multiplayer.

      • http://mayblogmaynot.blogspot.com Maniacfive

        Pwnd

  • Brinkman

    Thanks for the heads up y0rsh.

  • Brinkman

    Thanks for the heads up y0rsh.

  • TonyRockyHorror

    Lux DLX 2 is by FAR the best. The endless variety of maps is where it really shines.

  • TonyRockyHorror

    Lux DLX 2 is by FAR the best. The endless variety of maps is where it really shines.

  • Anon

    Is it just me or have games by big-name developers been almost consistently disappointing on the Appstore so far? Most of the best games are either made by indies or "specialized" mobile devs like Gameloft. Not that that's a bad thing, mind, I'm just wondering why none of those big, famous companies seems to be willing to move beyond cashing in on brand recognition. Oh well I guess I just answered my own question there, but still...

  • Anon

    Is it just me or have games by big-name developers been almost consistently disappointing on the Appstore so far? Most of the best games are either made by indies or "specialized" mobile devs like Gameloft. Not that that's a bad thing, mind, I'm just wondering why none of those big, famous companies seems to be willing to move beyond cashing in on brand recognition. Oh well I guess I just answered my own question there, but still...

  • Beezle

    I mainly agree to the article, but Strategery is a 'Dicwars' clone, not a 'Risk' clone. Dicewars has somewhat simpler rules which makes it wonderfully fast to play on the iDevices.

    And yes, 'Blood & Honor' as well as 'Conquist' are missing in the list.

  • Beezle

    I mainly agree to the article, but Strategery is a 'Dicwars' clone, not a 'Risk' clone. Dicewars has somewhat simpler rules which makes it wonderfully fast to play on the iDevices.

    And yes, 'Blood & Honor' as well as 'Conquist' are missing in the list.

  • Thorvald

    Why oh why must EA ruin the basics of Risk and come up with this terrible artwork and '80's Mecha anime' characters. Just use the original board artwork and skip the goofy side characters. Be faithful to the original game and nostalgia will win out.

    Guess now we wait for a faithful Axis & Allies port that doesn't ruin it with Nintendo DS cutscene battles.

  • Thorvald

    Why oh why must EA ruin the basics of Risk and come up with this terrible artwork and '80's Mecha anime' characters. Just use the original board artwork and skip the goofy side characters. Be faithful to the original game and nostalgia will win out.

    Guess now we wait for a faithful Axis & Allies port that doesn't ruin it with Nintendo DS cutscene battles.

  • Rugby

    Dominion 1.2 was just released. Improved AI and a new Europe map.

    The previous 1.1 update added a North America Map and Push Notifications. Push support is great for the game's asynchronous online play mode (like Words with Friends you can be in multiple games at once and get notified when it is your turn)

  • Rugby

    Dominion 1.2 was just released. Improved AI and a new Europe map.

    The previous 1.1 update added a North America Map and Push Notifications. Push support is great for the game's asynchronous online play mode (like Words with Friends you can be in multiple games at once and get notified when it is your turn)

  • Emilie

    Lux DLX is the best because it is the most intuitive and the most similar to the original classic board game

  • Emilie

    Lux DLX is the best because it is the most intuitive and the most similar to the original classic board game

  • daniel cj todd

    I like Conquest by sean O'connor. (his other game Slay is AWESOME as well). Conquest has different maps, and the ai is good.

  • daniel cj todd

    I like Conquest by sean O'connor. (his other game Slay is AWESOME as well). Conquest has different maps, and the ai is good.

  • http://blog.insightvr.com John Harrison

    This list is incomplete without Galcon, which is like realtime Risk in space.

  • http://blog.insightvr.com John Harrison

    This list is incomplete without Galcon, which is like realtime Risk in space.

  • Bboytrife

    online multiplayer is the key! I only buy it to play random people online.