Besieged – A Military Fantasy Card Game

Build fortifications, amass troops, form supply lines, and take the enemy castle.

siege-of-medieval-town-granger 14th century
Siege Warfare

Board games like Chess, Go, and Checkers have been around for thousands of years. These classic games revolve around strategy. Learning the rules is the first step in a marathon of mastering the craft. The thing these games have in common is their emphasis on utilising your pieces to outwit your opponent. There are many similarities between these games and military tactics. In Go, for example, the player must control more territory than the opponent. The correlation between board games and warfare is the catalyst for my game concept.


My game aims to recreate siege warfare. The play mat displays two opposing camps, two sides of a battlefield, and a neutral no man’s land. The game will be a hybrid of a board and card game. Each player will play on the same board, but they can modify their decks to adopt a more defensive or offensive strategy.

Much like real siege warfare, food is the measure of each player’s life and potential to survive. It slowly diminishes each turn. Launching offensives burns through food as supply lines must be built from the home camp. More useful units will generally require more food, and therefore players must build a balanced deck to account for the limited nature of resources.

Each unit card varies greatly from every other, with it’s own unique abilities. But there are three main unit types which can be used to compose a fifty card deck. These are Forces, Builders, and Merchants.

Common Unit

The primary unit type are Force units. Forces are the armed soldiers who defend the home camp and infiltrate the enemy castle. Each Force unit has a Power rating which indicates the amount of attack damage they can deal, a Strength rating which establishes what equipment they can operate, an Armour rating representing the damage they can take, and a Cost rating determining how much food they require to be used. Among the Force cards are Warrior cards. These are rare units with game-changing abilities, but are limited to only 3 per deck. The arrival of a Warrior at the right time may just turn the tide of battle.

While Builder units might not be remembered for their gallantry on the battlefield, the fortifications and siege weaponry required for victory wouldn’t exist without them. Each Builder unit offers unique equipment for successful offensives, or essential structural reinforcements for keeping the enemy at bay. The more valuable the build, the more food is required for trade, so players may be inclined not to spend all of their food on offensives.

Siege Equipment

Finally, there are Merchant cards. These units can be life savers, or a death sentence. Bolder players may be able to get the upper hand if they aren’t afraid to gamble with the lives of their units. Merchant units provide useful supplies to the player in the form of food and buffs. However, as is always the case with independent traders, there is a catch. Merchant units must be escorted from the contested no man’s land back to the safety of the home camp. And you can guarantee the enemy will be itching to step in and exacerbate the process.

Put simply, Besieged is a 2-player turn-based game designed to replicate military strategies and their application in siege warfare. The player builds and leads an army to take the enemy castle or eliminate the other army.


2 thoughts on “Besieged – A Military Fantasy Card Game

  1. Wow, quite the game you’ve got developing there. I’m really enjoying this hybrid boar/card game feel going on. The use of food as your “life points” (in the traditional TCG sense) as well as your cost factor for card deployment is a mechanic that I’m also taking great interest to. I like the usage of risk/reward that you’ve developed, which I feel will really help in achieving “funness” in your game.

    I guess my question is really how exactly does one take over the enemy castle? I get the idea of unit deployment, and also that it’s a hybrid-card game (which is an important factor to remember), but how do units advance? Would you use a grid-esque system such as Go/Chess? If so, will different “unit” types move in different ways?

    Another question that just sprang to mind, in relation to production, would it just be cards? Or would you have tokens or perhaps even unit models to represent your cards? I feel you need a physical figurine of some description to represent your units when they’re moving on the board; it’ll be hard to track with traditional cards.

    Liked by 1 person

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