The Great Plains in the latter half of the 19th century was a cultural battleground. The Native way of life was under siege by an avalanche of invaders seeking land and progress. Plains Indian Wars reduces this monumental and catastrophic series of conflicts to its basic elements: A settler surge via long snaking wagon trains, the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, east and west, and the cavalry sent to protect them all. At the same time, Plains Indian Wars seeks to offer the Native-American player the opportunity to unite earlier, hold their own and perhaps even prevent European-American success.
Plains Indian Wars can be played by 1-4 players. It is a card-driven, cube game that uses area movement and control. Game play averages 60-90 minutes. The Plains Indian Wars Map board centers on the Great American Plains between the Mississippi River in the east and the Rockies in the west, the Canadian border in the north and Mexican border in the south. The Northern Plains Tribes (NPT) and the Southern Plains Tribes(SPT)each defend 12 regions while the Northern (Crow)and Southern (Mexican) "Enemies" each defend 5 regions of their own.
Separating the NPT and SPT is the planned route for the Transcontinental Railroad. US Completion (linking the two lines) ends the game and earns the US player a bonus. The Indian player earns a bonus if this is prevented. Through the course of the game Wagon trains attempt to travel historical trails to the Rockies. If they make it they earn victory points for the US player if they don't the Indian player gets the VPs.