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Pax: Game of the Century
Pax: Game of the Century
by Chesapeake Bay Trading Company / Foreign Advisory Service (1955)
Player Count
3 to 4

Playing Time
1 hour
  • Political
  • Card Game
  • Designers
  • A. H. van Wagenberg
  • Mechanisms
  • Auction/Bidding
  • Hand Management
  • Rating: 0/10 from 0 users


    Pax, the game of the Century seems to be the only game ever published by the Chesapeake Bay Trading Company, later known as the Foreign Advisory Service. The publisher was a specialty import company that dealt mainly in Dutch and French dishes and pewter, Royal Leerdam, Delft, Quimper, etc. No designer is listed.

    The game consists of a deck of cards representing nations or geographic areas and the object is to complete a "hand" of nations that dominates the world political scene to the extent of being able to enforce a "Pax" similar to the ancient Pax Romana. Specially stamped poker chips are used in bidding for cards. Besides the rules and a score pad, the game came with a green felt playing surface with a map of the world and other significant items in white. This surface is known in the rules as "the traditional green table of diplomacy". The game came in two types of boxes, one a padded leatherette style and the other a red paper covered cardboard with trays to hold the cards and chips. The smaller red box has a pocket inside the lid to hold the rules and score pad.

    Four players is the optimum number, though rules are given for a three player game. The four players represent the United States, Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and either France or Germany, as picked by the dealer. Play then proceeds until one player has built up a hand through either draws, auction, or trading large enough to declare his peculiar pax based on his political leanings.

    The four types of Paxes are:
    Pax Americana
    Pax Muscovita
    Pax Atlantica (the English Pax)
    Pax Europeana (French or German Pax)

    The game betrays its Cold War background by some of the interesting art and factoids on the cards, which are about three times the size of playing cards and are quite colorful with period artwork. The rules are a scant two pages, but are easily picked up by any traditional card players who are familiar with bridge. Certain cards are usable only with certain Paxes and vary in value. The publisher boasted that "Pax is sold in all the free countries of the world."

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