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Putin Vs. The Dragon: The Coming Sino-Russian War for Siberia
Putin Vs. The Dragon: The Coming Sino-Russian War for Siberia
by One Small Step (2018)
Player Count
  • Wargame
  • Modern Warfare
  • Designers
  • Ty Bomba
  • Family
    Rating: 0/10 from 0 users


    This is a wargame in which solitaire play can be fudged, but it's more usually played by two, whereby one (the "Russian player") commands the Kremlin's forces and the other (the "Chinese player") commands the Chinese forces opposed to him. Mongolia is the only other nation in the game. It starts as a neutral that may be invaded--and thereby brought actively into play--by either Russia or China.

    This isn't a simulation of the "opaque" or "gray war" techniques recently used by the Russians in the Crimea and eastern Ukraine and by the Chinese in the South China Sea. Rather, it's designed to facilitate the examination of the strategic possibilities inherent in this potentially much larger and more violent situation.

    The potential conflict being modeled here, though its possibility isn't yet discussed much in the border media, might best be thought of as the "war after next." That is, with the Chinese efforts to push into the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean being increasingly blocked by new alliance structures, and the "New Silk Road" across Central Asia being inescapably long and therefore vulnerable, Beijing has only one more direction in which to go to secure the natural resources needed for its hungry economy: north to Siberia.

    Such a strategy has two inherent advantages for the Chinese. First, Siberia is relatively close by and, once secured, the resources extracted from it need not be shipped overseas in order to get them to Chinese factories. Second, Putin's foreign policy adventurism has left Russia with no friends other than Iran--so no other country would be likely to come to his aid.

    Of course, there's one major disadvantage in a Siberian strategy. That is, Russia, like China, is a major nuclear power, with all the danger for a potential holocaust that implies.

    Each full turn represents two months of real time. Each hexagon on the map represents 37.25 miles (60 km) from side to opposite side.

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