For example, DEFCON is currently at 3. Due to some trigger (event card, end of turn, etc.) it needs to move. Can you confirm my understanding of the verbs?

INCREASE: Move DEFCON to left to 4

IMPROVE: Move DEFCON to left to 4

DECREASE: Move DEFCON to right to 2

DEGRADE: Move DEFCON to right to 2

LOWER: Move DEFCON to right to 2

1 Answer 1


You've got them straight. The rule book uses all of those terms.

The rules are pretty clear on improve, decrease, degrade, and lower:

4.5 A. Improve DEFCON Status: If the DEFCON level is lower than 5, add one to the DEFCON status (towards Peace).

6.3.4 Any Coup attempt in a Battleground country degrades the DEFCON status one level (towards Nuclear War).

8.1.1 DEFCON status measures nuclear tension in the game. The DEFCON level begins the game at its maximum ‘peace’ level of 5. It can go down and back up due to events and actions by the players, but if, at any point, it decreases to , the game ends immediately.

The Extended Playthrough uses increase:


(DEFCON increases to 3, Mil Ops requirements met by both players, no lost points)

[Emphasis added to rule citations]

  • 2
    Good. I wish the publisher would just use 1 verb for going left, and 1 verb for going right. The "lower" verb was the main verb that threw me off. Depending how you think about it, it could be interpreted either way. Thanks for the reply. Commented Oct 12, 2014 at 3:56

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .