Nuclear Destruction

Nuclear Destruction is a play-by-mail (PBM) game. It was published by Rick Loomis of Flying Buffalo Inc. in 1970. As the first professional PBM game, it started the commercial PBM industry. Offered by postal mail initially, the game is available by email as well in the 21st century. Active for 52 years, as of October 2021, Rick Loomis PBM Games publishes the game. Players use strategic missiles, factories, money, and other elements of gameplay with a focus on diplomacy to win by becoming the sole survivor.

Nuclear Destruction
Image of a nuclear explosion over a city with the text "Nuclear Destruction" in the sky at the top of the image in orange letters.jpg
Cover image.
DesignersRick Loomis
PublishersFlying Buffalo Inc.
Publication1970; 52 years ago (1970)
Players10 to 30
Skills requiredCritical thinking, diplomacy


Nuclear Destruction was the first game offered by Flying Buffalo Inc., and started the professional PBM industry.[1] It was the first professional PBM game.[2] Flying Buffalo Inc. offered the game through mail initially, but it is a play-by-email (PBEM) game in the 21st century as well.[3] As of October 2021, Rick Loomis PBM Games publishes the game.[4] Nuclear Destruction has been active since 1970.[5]


According to reviewer Charles Mosteller, editor in chief of Suspense and Decision, the modern PBM magazine, Nuclear Destruction is a "Strategic missile game with emphasis on diplomacy".[3] The object is to be the sole survivor at the end of the game, by arranging for the other players to be destroyed with nuclear missiles.[6] Player tools include missiles, "anti-missiles", factories, and money for influencing other players.[6]


In Issue 9 of Command, Dennis Agosta admired Nuclear Destruction for the lack of any random factor. "It's intellect against intellect, where the outcome of the game is determined by how you and your allies (if any) make your moves." He concluded, "The excitement level of PBM Nuclear Destruction is very high, especially when the game is run on one or two week deadlines."[7]

See alsoEdit



  • Agosta, Dennis (September 1976). "Game Review: Nuclear Destruction". Command. No. 9.
  • Lindahl, Greg. "Nuclear Destruction". PBM List. Retrieved May 30, 2020.
  • Loomis, Richard F. (1981). "Rules for Nuclear Destruction" (PDF). Rick Loomis PBM Games. Retrieved March 27, 2022.
  • McLain, Bob (August 1, 1993). "Play By Mail: The Infancy of Cyberspace". Pyramid. Retrieved May 5, 2020.
  • Mosteller, Charles (June 2014). "Nuclear Destruction: ND-842/Turn # 1" (PDF). Suspense and Decision. No. 8. pp. 21–28. Retrieved May 30, 2020.
  • Spencer, David (October 7, 2021). "PBM's Newest Company: Rick Loomis PBM Games". Suspense & Decision. Retrieved October 24, 2021. {{cite magazine}}: Cite magazine requires |magazine= (help)
  • Townsend, Jim (1988). "The PBM Corner". White Wolf Magazine. No. 11. White Wolf Publishing. p. 20.