Ho Ho Ho! I hope everyone had a great Christmas!
I thought I’d get a review out for one of the games I received this Christmas. Galaxy Trucker 5th Anniversary Edition!
A friend of mine already has the base set for this game and I have to admit, I love it, he loves it, everyone we’ve played it with loves it. This year Santa himself decided to bring me my very own copy of the 5th Anniversary edition. A giant box packed full of galaxy trucking fun!
Open it up and you’ll find: The Galaxy Trucker base-game, “The Big Expansion” and “Another Big Expansion”. There’s also some extra cards thrown in to balance the game and impose handicaps on experienced players. This all makes for a LOT of stuff in this box! Hundreds of tiles, tonnes of game boards/ship types, and a whole host of other fun cards and pieces!
If you already own the base game then you might not find this set quite as appealing as I do, because of the repeated content, but I would seriously consider trading away your base set and upgrading! It’s great value and you get a single box to store it all in!
For this review I’m only really going to comment on the base game because that’s the one I know the rules for. It’s also the one I just finished playing with my non-gamer parents! I think I need to give a bit of gaming history with regards to gaming with my family.
Summer 2011 – My parents played Arkham Horror with me. The rules were too much for them and my Dad walked away mid-game.
Christmas 2011 – I tried to introduce my family to the Battlestar Galactica boardgame. They love the show, the rules are straight-forward, or so I thought, and I was certain I was onto a winner. Alas it didn’t work out that way at all. This prompted me to rethink my Christmas gaming approach and release my personal Christmas number one!
“Last Christmas, they tried a big game,
But the very same day, they swore never to play.
This year, to save me from tears,
We’ll play something simple!”
So this year we started with Carcassonne (they don’t come much more simple!) and then I decided to take a punt…. I persuaded them to play Galaxy Trucker!
Not wanting to scare them too much, I introduced them to the base-game and left out the little pink and brown aliens because they were already a little overwhelmed by the different components without adding any more confusion.
We played through the usual three rounds of the game and they actually enjoyed it! Yes there was confusion, yes they lost miserably, but they enjoyed it because when things went wrong we could all laugh!
For those who haven’t played the game and want a better idea of what it’s like, here’s a not-so-brief description of what to expect:
You start with a board. On this board appears an outline for a spaceship (your truck!) There’s a pile of face-down tiles in the middle of the table and on the word “Go”, you retrieve a single tile at a time. On each tile you’ll find a different ship component. Place the component on your ship board, connected to another piece, or return it to the pile face-up.
Essentially you’re competing against the other players to find useful pieces and build an effective truck with no exposed connections, plenty of weapons, engines, crew, energy and shields. If you take too long you’ll be left scrounging through the useless pieces your opponents rejected; build too quickly though and you may connect your ship parts incorrectly and incur a penalty!
Eventually, someone will turn a timer and trigger the last stage of ship building, all players have until the timer runs out to finish ship construction. Ships are inspected for errors by all players and, following acceptance of the build, the trucking begins!
The journey you take consists of a variety of adventures represented by a deck of cards. Asteroids, Smugglers, Abandoned Stations, Planets, Open Space, Slavers, Epidemics and Saboteurs await you on your journey! Each card is encountered in turn and there’s lots of laughs to be had as chunks of badly formed ships are torn asunder and entire space crafts ripped in half.
Along the journey your sole purpose is to collect credits, or cargo. When you arrive at the end of the journey you trade in the cargo for credits and obtain yet more by arriving sooner than other players, or still having the best formed ship by the end of the journey.
With your first journey over, you do it all again. This time with a bigger ship and harder adventures. Repeat for a third round, and then add up all of your credits. The player with the most credits wins!
In summary, this is an amazing game, fast, fun, exciting, involving and very easy to teach. If my parents can understand it then anyone can! I recommend this to people looking for something to spend their Christmas money on! I’m very glad that I have it in my collection and thoroughly look forward to trying out all of the new ship components and layouts from the included expansions. If someone else in your gaming group has the base game; still consider getting this pack! When you go to theirs you can play their copy, and when you’re playing with other people you can play your own.
So with the review complete I thought I’d leave you all with a Galaxy Trucker and Christmas-merriment inspired adaptation of the 1987 classic: Star Trekkin’.
“Star Truckin’ across the multiverse,
On a great big rust-bucket, under captain Jerk.
Star Truckin’ across the multiverse,
Boldy going forward, we don’t have reverse!”