The year is 1917 and with Tsar Nicholas II forced out of the throne, a conservative Provisional Government represents the authority. However, with the Petrograd Soviet Council on the opposition, an intense power struggle is on the rise, leading to a social revolution.

Which side will you choose? How will you help lead your units to victory? And most importantly, will you be able to gain the will of the people? Find out when you go head-to-head with an opponent in Dual Powers: Revolution 1917!

What Is It?

This is primarily an area control game for 1-2 players with a little bit of deduction sprinkled in. Each round there is an area of unrest as well as two secret objectives, chosen by the players that will award victory points to the player with the most strength there.

Throughout the round, players will choose command cards to play which allow them to place, move, or refresh units in different regions on the board to gain more strength. Players also have 3 Leader cards which give them slightly better abilities to help them edge out their opponent, if played at just the right time. Playing cards will also advance the date, which will help players gain bonus actions, take the will of the people, and potentially trigger the final round.

While players take their actions, they are also trying to figure out their opponent’s secret objective so they can sneak into that region for more points. Once someone move the score marker to their end of their side of the support track, they win! If no one does by the end of the round that reaches October/November, whoever has the score marker on their track wins.

Who Is It For?

I would recommend this to history fans because it utilizes the theme well. It also has some historical information cards to help you learn more about the background of what’s going on in the game.

I’d also recommend it to ages 15 and up. It’s not terribly difficult, but it does have some strategy/depth, and probably wouldn’t appeal to younger audiences.

I’ll also recommend it to all you solo players out there, because the solo game is not very different from the 2-player game, and holds up well.

Contents + Quality

Cards – Average quality. The symbology is clear and easy to remember what all the actions are

Region/Unit Tiles – All nice quality, very thick cardboard. Unit strength is clearly displayed

Wooden Pieces – These include the score, blockade, day, month, will of the people, and objective markers. They’re all nice wooden pieces, and add a bit of a “pop” to the board, which is nice aesthetically

Board – Nice size, plenty of room for the tiles. The colors are nice overall, and there are symbols on the board as well to help with colorblindness

Box – Good size for what’s in it, everything fits in nicely when all bagged. Bagging everything is definitely your best bet so cards don’t get bent

Rules – Clearly explained; good examples and breakdown of everything


Solitaire – The solo game plays very similarly to the 2 player game. One big difference is that you start off not knowing your own secret objective, in addition to the automa’s, and so there is an additional action available to reveal your objective. The automa also plays more cards each round and has many more units available than in a normal head-to-head game. There are 6 different difficulties to try, and it really does offer a nice challenge if you enjoy solo gaming.


  • Simple to learn/play
  • Smooth gameplay
  • Leader abilities are cool and add to the strategy of playing cards at just the right moment
  • Nice tug-of-war effect; the score marker tends to move back and forth a good amount, and because of how the objective markers resolve, the player who is behind usually has a good chance to recover
  • Plays fairly quickly; it actually plays quicker than I thought it would and turns go quickly in general too, kind of plays to that tug-of-war again


  • Randomness of the card draws can make it difficult to get your units in the areas you want if you just have the wrong regions or little/no movement available
  • It seems that the Provisional Government is easier to play as, which is likely why the Petrograd Soviets start with the will of the people, it’s not that the game is unbalanced, but for new players, I think that the Soviet side takes more thought to play well

Final Thoughts

Overall, I was surprised at home much I like this game. Pleasantly surprised, that is! I’m not usually huge on war themed games because I feel like most are long and/or clunky. But this is very streamlined, pretty easy to get into, and plays very quickly.

I felt that the balance was good, overall, though I personally struggled more with the Soviet side because of the lower initial unit numbers. This will vary for different players of course who strategize differently than me, but it is worth noting the the units are not the same on both sides.

I also enjoyed the solo mode. I played at lower difficulties (because I’m scared of a challenge, okay??) and it was definitely “thinky” and interesting to try and outwit the automa.

Whether playing it on your own or against a friend, it’s definitely worth checking out if you’re interested in the theme, or just a quick area control game.

My Final Ratings:
Overall Game – 6.5/10
Aesthetics – 7/10
Replayability – 6/10
Difficulty – 5/10

Additional Information:
Designer -Brett Myers
Artists – Luis Francisco, Kwanchai Moriya
Publisher – Thunderworks Games
MSRP – $39.95

*I was provided a copy of this game to do this review*

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