Hearts and Minds: Vietnam 1965-1975 from Worthington Games is a Card Driven Game that focuses on the battle for the control of Vietnam between the Communist NVA and VC and the United States. Hearts and Minds uses most major events of the period, including events such as the McNamara Line which was never actually built. Although nominally a combat game, the mechanisms actually revolve around both sides occupying South Vietnamese provinces for propaganda purposes. The heart of the game is political influence. There is little doubt that the Allied player will eventually withdraw his American boys from the quagmire, but the question is, how quickly and in what numbers?
Hearts and Minds contains 80 cards, tokens to represent the American army, the ARVN army, the NVA army, VC units of varying hidden strength, the Cambodian army, the Laotian army and a small contingent of international allies.
I purchased my 1st Edition copy for the affordable price of $39.99 on eBay but there is a newer 2nd Edition print that only changed some counters and the color scheme used for the map. I have enjoyed my interactions with the designer John Poniske in our various interviews covering his designs such as Plains Indian Wars from GMT Games, The Berlin Airlift from Legion Wargames and Revolution Road from Compass Games. He is a very thoughtful designer and always finds a way to insert the more human parts of conflicts into the design. This one looks great and I cannot wait to play it. Look for a video review over the next few months.