Sunday, July 13, 2014

Board Game: Forbidden Desert

The Game: Forbidden Desert
The Publisher: Gamewright
Time: 20 minutes or so
Players: Me, +Dirty Heart+Rob L+Michael Taylor+Jessica Paull

Game Play: Very much like Forbidden Island, this version has adventurers crashing their weird steampunk ship in the desert. There's an ancient, buried civilization here, and by excavating the dunes, you can find odd devices. Bad news: There's a massive sandstorm shifting everything around, and water is an issue. Get the pieces of your busted-ass ship back together and find the launchpad, or die.

Any crash you can walk away from...
 The board, as you can see in that picture, is a 5x5 grid of tiles with one tile missing. That missing tile is the storm, which shifts every turn based on what storm cards you draw. Storm cards can also increasing the storms intensity (you draw more cards) or indicate that the sun beats down (everyone loses water). You can find more water on the board, but only the Water Bearer (that was me) can retrieve it once it's excavated. The positions of everything on the board can change with the storm.

Sarah fears for her life.
Tiles get buried in sand as the storm shifts, and you have to un-bury them to excavate or use them. So there are multiple points of danger in the game, plus the usual thing that this kind of game carries; it's a co-op game, meaning if one person runs out of water, everyone loses.

Opinions: This game is kinda what you play when you've gotten used to Forbidden Island but you don't want to play Pandemic; it's nicely in the middle. It's challenging, and you have to think ahead - we lost because Mike ran out of water and I couldn't get to him in time to save him, but we had one piece of the ship and we knew where another one was. The movement of the storm takes some getting used to, but once you've figured it out it goes pretty smoothly.

Mike dies in agony for the second time that night.
Keep? Yep.