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Shattered State is, at its heart, a turn-based strategy game that takes place on the fictional island of Isla de Guerra. This small island nation, located several hundred miles off the coast of Uruguay, has just suffered the loss of its dictatorial leader and now opposing factions compete for control.

Each team in the game takes the role of an autonomous unit of one of these opposing factions: NATO disarmament forces, Federalista government forces, Guerrillero revolutionaries, foreign Invasores or Mercenarios. Each faction has unique strengths and weaknesses that allow for different strategies and different experiences of play. For example, a NATO unit is smaller in numbers, but well trained and equipped while a Guerrillero unit may have many soldiers, but suffers from a lack of training and advanced weaponry. There can be more than one unit per faction, as the game currently supports up to 28 teams.

Each team owns territories, which are represented by individual Ghost Recon maps, and each turn they are given the chance to govern those territories, its resources and interact with other teams. The resources in the game are weapons, soldiers, money, food and fuel. Each territory produces different amounts of resources per turn. A rural territory may produce a lot of food while an urban territory may produce more money or recruits. Each resource has an important role in the game: fuel is required to move forces, food to support troops and money is needed to buy weapons and repair damaged territories. Each faction also has strengths and weaknesses when it comes to resources. The Federalista forces dominate the urban areas of the island and are able to generate more money per turn, while the foreign Invasores come from oil rich nations and receive more fuel.

Teams can negotiate with one another, form alliances, parley for movement rights through territories, trade and attack one another. Movement of soldiers and other resources may take place over land, air (provided the team has an airbase territory) or sea (provided the team has a docks territory). Attacking an enemy territory may take the form of a raid mission, sabotage mission or assault mission. If successful in a raid, a team steals resources from the enemy. In a sabotage mission, a team may destroy an enemy’s resource production capability. In an assault, a team may take control of an enemy territory. All conflicts are resolved through one or more Ghost Recon siege matches.

Individual players, who choose not to join a team, can play as individual Mercenarios for hire. Mercenary teams and players are hired by other teams for the length of one or more turns to participate in any siege matches. The success of Mercenario teams and players are tracked through a separate board, allowing for those players who wish a more traditional ladder experience to still participate in the game. Mercenaries may charge as much money as they desire, though only the most successful will be able to attract teams to pay higher prices.

Best of all the game is fully automated through the online Tactical Interface. Troop movements, battle results and even weapon expenditures are all done automatically. After each match replay files will be uploaded by the teams to the website, which will then automatically total all kills, determine the victor and even charge a team for the different kits taken. No enormous spreadsheets and hours of pre-match inventory planning are required. The game is optimized for as much quick action as the teams can handle. However, those teams that enjoy more attention to detail are of course free to plan in advance as much as they desire.


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