Spotlight– Days of Ire: Budapest 1956 By Cloud Island Games


A Trip To The Past

One of the things I love most about board games is that they can take you to new worlds, give you a glimpse of the future, or return you to the past. If you consider books, movies, and video games, this isn’t exactly a unique ability. So, what’s different about a board game? Board games give the ability to live in these worlds and time periods, all while interacting with people in the physical world. There are no screens or graphics to separate us. Books, movies, and video games are wonderful, but they just don’t have the same charm.

Some of my very favorite games were inspired by events in history. For example, Letters From Whitechapel was inspired by the string of grisly murders committed by Jack the Ripper. Now, maybe this isn’t the most happy of game themes, but it is certainly immersive. Playing Jack is one of the most exciting and nerve-racking experiences I have ever had. The whole time I was playing, I really felt like I was in his shoes (less for the murdery bits), evading the police and remaining undiscovered, so that I may strike again the next night.

I am always fascinated by what inspires a game’s theme, and when I came across Days of Ire: Budapest 1956, I just couldn’t help myself.

Time For A Revolution

In the wake of WWII, Hungary, under the impressions of the Soviet Union, became a communist state. As time passed, the Hungarian people grew tired of the oppressive policies put in place by the Soviets. During the last week in October, in 1956, a group of students rallied together to march to the parliament building in protest of the communist policies. The march drew a lot of attention and became a massive demonstration. When the demonstrators called for the release of some fellow protesters, they were fired upon by the government. This was the defining moment that sparked the Revolution of October 23.

Days of Ire: Budapest 1956 is a semi-cooperative war game, for  1-4 players, reminiscent of games like Twilight Struggle or Labyrinth: The War on Terror. In the game, one player takes the role of a soviet leader, whose goal is to quell the revolt through media manipulation and brute force. The other players work cooperatively, each taking on the position of one of the leaders of the revolution. They work together to collect resources, recruit fighters, and fighting off the military. Because I have yet to play the game, I figured you could get a better idea of gameplay by checking out this brief overview by Gaming Rules! 

What’s In The Box

A copy of Days of Ire: Budapest 1956 will include:


The game in all its glory. Photo credit: Days of Ire: Budapest 1956 Kickstarter campaign page

  • 1 Large game board
  • 140+ Cards
    • 40x Revolutionary cards
    • 30x Events cards, 3x starting events
    • 42x Headline cards
    • 8x State Protection Authority cards
    • 3x Player cards
  • 80+ Tokens and markers
    • 22x Fighters
    • 3x Revolutionary tanks
    • 8x Tanks
    • 14x Militia
    • 5x Snipers
    • 2x Barricades
    • 9x Event resolution markers
    • 11x Inactive Fighter markers
  • 3x Player Standees
  • 2x 6-sided dice

Pledge Levels

So, this campaign is incredibly simple; there are only two different pledge levels to choose from. This is a pretty unusual setup, but I also find that this is better than the campaigns that have 10 choices too many. It make it easy to decide, since there aren’t so many pledge levels that the choosing process becomes overwhelming.

The first level is set at $49 USD. This will get you one copy of the game and all of the unlocked stretch goals. They have also listed the following shipping costs:

  • US: $4
  • Western EU: $6
  • Eastern/ Central EU & Scandinavia (not Norway): $10
  • Canada, Australia, parts of Asia, Norway, Switzerland, & Russia: $15
  • Rest of the world: $30

The other level is meant for retailers and is set at $380 USD. If you back this as a retailer, you will get ten copies of the game. If you are interested in getting more than 10 copies, you will have to contact the Cloud Island folks via Kickstarter.

Stretch Goals

Currently, there are four stretch goals (aside from initial funding) available to unlock (I will mark unlocked goals with a purple diamond).

  • $25,000- Funding goal
  • $30,000- New card
    • AK-47
  • $35,000- Linen Finish
  • $40,000- Dedicated Rulebooks
    • One rulebook for the VS gameplay and one for the Co-op gameplay
  • $42,000- New card
    • Last Stand
  • $45,000- Alternate starting events

Cloud Island Games

be348920f3af8dfd9f969f1da2949f9a_originalCloud Island Games is a fairly new publishing company whose team is a collective of Maltese game designers led by David Chircop. Some of you my recognise that name; David is one of the designers of … and then we held hands and The Pursuit of Happiness. He is also part of the group that brought us the game Posthuman.  Days of Ire: Budapest 1956 is the company’s first game, but I already feel like it will be a success. It’s always nice when the company has experienced designers behind it. I’m really looking forward to this first game and the rest to come.

If you’d like to follow Cloud Island and all their projects, you can check them out on Facebook and Twitter.

Final Thoughts

Normally war games aren’t my thing, but for some reason, this game really seems to have my attention. I think that the theme and history behind the game is something that is going to lend a lot of immersiveness to the play. After I watched the little campaign video, I went and looked up more info on this revolution, and it was super interesting. It’s so amazing what just a handful of determined people can do.

I also like that there are different ways to play built into the game’s base. Most games seem to add-on the one-player variants later, but this game allows you to do that from the start. Since I’ve begun receiving games to review/ preview, I spend a lot more time playing board games by myself and I gotta say, I’m starting to see why one-player modes are so appealing to some people. I’m definitely excited to try the one-player mode for this game. The cooperative portion of the game seems really awesome too. I like the idea of taking on the identity  one of the rebel leaders and working together to fight an oppressive communist government. Overall, I think this game is going to be a really fun and interesting addition to any game collection.

As of right now, the campaign is funded and there are 16 days left to go. Definitely check this one out if you have the chance.


Was this helpful to you? What other information would you like to have seen? Have suggestions for future Spotlights? Would you like me to do a review/preview? Please leave a comment below, or head over to my contact page to send me an email, tweet, or Facebook message. Thanks for reading!:)


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