Board games are fantastic at modeling complex situations. I suspect that just as music is the art of sound, film is the art of directing, and literature is the art of fantasy authors using italics to tell me when their characters are delivering moody internal monologues, board games are the art of reducing models to their most digestible format.
Volko Ruhnke is no stranger to setting cardboard and counters to this purpose. Best known for the COIN Series, which depicts asymmetrical insurgencies, revolutions, and ideological contests throughout history, Ruhnke has now delivered a second system. This one is called Levy & Campaign, its first volume is Nevsky, and it’s an exemplar of how to deploy incentives and constraints to teach us something about history.