We all love Risk, but let's face it: Risk has been plummeting in popularity and community lately. Where did the official Hasbro site go? What happened to the Borak Risk site? The price on the Risk II computer game has dropped to what? We're not meeting to play this weekend? I thought they loved it. It's not a wasted three hours!
Do these comments sound familiar? Local groups across the country are no longer playing, and Hasbro seems to be cutting its financial losses. It is obvious that something must be done and quickly. Our solution: organization of local chapters across the country to get a gauge of the serious players and allow for organized play among the people who are truly interested. Then, we organize a national tournament that receives the player with the best record from each of the local chapters. This allows the weekly (or any length of time, really) to act as qualifying rounds for the national tournament. Don't think any of this is feasible? Read on.
The complete evidence for the possible success of the idea comes from Italy. Only a few years ago, they established a national tournament using 64 local tournaments as qualifying rounds. Their national league (FIRK) had a total of about 640 members, and the national tournament features the top 36 of them. Realistically, that's not a lot of people; there are enough American players out there. Whenever in doubt, look to the historical proof of Italy.
However, we realize that in the real world, there are huge obstacles to our utopian concept. The first large one is communication. How would we get the message out to all the players we need and organize the local branches? The second large problem is money. If we have to hold a central tournament, where does the money come for airfares, location, hotel rooms, and everything else? Making the players pay out of pocket would severely limit interest. So... maybe someday, right? Until then, we must do everything in our power to stop the slow descent of Risk.