Please. I’m begging you. If you’ve played Battleboard, let me know. I’m starting to think it was a shared hallucination.
Maybe I’ll have more luck if I asked whether any of you have played Galaxy of Win Games, from 1998? I’ve actually written about one of the games in this collection before – the fabulous and timeless Spooky Castle. But Battleboard, it seems, has not borne the slings and arrows of passing time as stoically as its fellows. I can find barely two or three references to the game on the entirety of the Interwebs. I was lucky to find the above image, to be honest.
The central premise, from what I remember, is that Battleboard was a game of chess, but whenever you “took” an opponent’s piece you would enter into a little real-time one-on-one space battle with the two pieces in question to decide who won. Each piece had different playstyles and relative strengths – so, for example, it was almost impossible to beat the fast-moving and fast-firing Queen piece with a simple pawn.
But there were some really interesting pieces as well, I remember. The lucrehulk-looking piece – the circular one with the ring around it – had no guns at all, but it had a personal shield that you could use to protect yourself while you rammed your opponent into oblivion. And the winged pieces in the corners (are they meant to be rooks?) could curve their bullets around obstacles.
It’s been a very long time, but every couple of years or so I still find myself thinking about those little space duels – almost certainly remembering them to be far more exciting than they actually were – and hoping that someone somewhere out there also remembers the joys of Battleboard.