Sunday, April 19, 2009

Scooby Doo Escape from the Vortex - Review

My son spotted this the other day and we grabbed it. Today we gave it a try, so here's a detailed look at it.

The game comes in a small box a bit bigger than your average paper back book. The box cover is really shiny and very colourful, prefect fot attracting your average Scooby Doo fan, like myself.

The Game has a puzzle like board making it much larger than the box would suggest. The board is very VERY colourful. It's main feature is a black and yellow circle offset from the middle that actually sits on a spindle just above the board that allows it to spin around. The majority of the board is made up of large purple pipes that lead around and bend back on themselves. These pipes are segmented and these are the spaces along which you will move the pieces.

There are many "pipe break" spaces these show a couple of creepy eyes peering out the pipes dark interior. When setting up the game you place a token on top of each of these. The tokens have a matching "Pipe Break" on their reverse. On their obverse side they show one of three things. Either a box of scooby snacks, a security key rather like a credit card or finally a robot.

For playing pieces you have thick cardboard stand ups. There is one for each member of the Scooby Gang detailing the characters front and rear on eachj side. There are also 3 Robot standups Each comes with a plastic base to stand them in. The bases have a good grip on the figure and are weighty enough to not blow over at the first breeze.

There are also two standard six sided dice one black and one white.

The objective of the game is to move your character around the pipes picking up the counters to pass. Once you have a security key and three Scooby Snacks you make your way to an escape space on the board. First one there wins.

On your turn you start by revolving the vortex circle anti clockwise one space.

The outside of this vortex is made up of movement spaces and the ends of pipes. Characters can only move off of the vortex and into the pipes if they pass through a pipe end that is currently aligned with the pipes on the board.

Once you've turned the vortex you roll a die for movement. If there are any Robots in play you also roll the black die for their movement, you move all of the robots in play the number of spaces indicated. Then you do the same using the white die for your own character.

When moving your piece if you pass over a "Broken Pipe" token you flip it over and see what it is. If its a Key or snack you take it. If it's a robot, you replace the token with a robot standup.

The robots are where the only limited stratergy in the game come into play. When moving them you can pass over spaces occupied by other players, which allows you to send them back to their starting space in the vortex. Sadly that's it for tactics and stratergy. You'll find yourself moving the robots away from your piece and towards your opponents and they likewise.

The game is listed as being for ages 6+ and that's fair enough. It's roll and move with just a little more added and there is nothing to appeal to adults.

No comments: