1989: Dawn of Freedom from GMT Games

In what is quickly becoming a regular series, today’s post is about another GMT Games P500 game that I’ve ordered but it hasn’t quite made the cut yet.

Previous attempts have born fruit! The Barracks Emperors has gained a whole 8 more orders! Last week’s Ancient Civilizations of the Middle East has gained 13!

That’s dedication, don’t you know. That’s success!

(Editor – Just bear with him, folks. Let him have his delusions)

This week’s game is a classic that’s up for its 2nd printing.


1989: Dawn of Freedom was designed by Ted Torgerson & Jason Matthews with artwork by Donal Hegarty, Rodger B. MacGowan, Leland Myrick, and Mark Simonitch. It is in the same vein as the highly ranked Twilight Struggle, a card-driven game that simulates the end of the Cold War just like its predecessor did with the entirety of it.

In 1989, two players vie to end the Cold War on their own terms.

One player is the Communist, holding power over all of Eastern Europe. However, with no more military help in propping up these regimes coming from Moscow, they have to do whatever it takes to hold on to their empire because democracy and freedom is on the horizon.

The other player is the Democrat, spearheading a bunch of democratic revolutionaries, students, and church trying to change society enough so that freedom rings and oppressive governments crumble.

(From the GMT site for 1989)

This is done using the well-familiar card-driven mechanic made famous by Twilight Struggle and so many other games.

You can play a card for either the Ops points (top left) or for the event. However, if the event happens to be your opponent’s event (the star behind the Ops points, with red being Communist, blue being Democrat, and grey being either players’), the event still happens.

Thus if you have a hand full of your opponent’s cards, unfortunately all of the events are going to trigger.

Looking at the rulebook (sadly, I’ve never played this), the game does add some other interesting-sounding things like Power Struggles and Support Checks that are really intriguing.

While I have not yet played 1989, I have played a lot of games on the app for Twilight Struggle and the similarly-playing 1960: Making of a President may very well be my favourite game played this year (check out my Top 10 games played this year posts coming in early January!) so this one is right up my alley.

That, along with my buddy Clio’s excellent posts on 1989the Dawn of Freedom really makes me want this game to get reprinted.

How can you go wrong with a game about the rise of freedom in multiple oppressed countries?

You owe it to yourself to read Clio’s many analyses of the game and its cards, and then realize just how cool this game really sounds.

The 2nd printing of this game currently sits at 441 orders, just short of the 500 required.

(Editor – writing this on Saturday night, will Dave double-check for any movement on this number before this posts on Monday? Taking your bets now)

This game needs a reprint for those of us who found out about it long after the first print run was gone.

Join me in getting this one over the hump!

You know you want to.

(Editor – what, you think you have Jedi mind powers now?)

7 Comments on “1989: Dawn of Freedom from GMT Games

  1. Ha, now I want to play 1989 again!
    I picked up a copy three years ago without even knowing how rare it had become – lucky me!
    And thank you for mentioning my little labors of love on 1989!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: 5 on Friday 13/12/19 – No Rerolls

  3. Pingback: Red Flag Over Paris from GMT Games – Dude! Take Your Turn!

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