Mars Attacks Dice Game
MFG: Steve Jackson Games
#of Players: 3 – 6
Age Range: 10+
SIDE NOTE: IN THIS REVIEW YOU WILL SEE THE ACRONYM SJG IT STANDS FOR STEVE JACKSON GAMES.
Overall Construction: This game is a mixed type game. By that I mean it is part Board Game & part Dice Game. What you get is: a set of 10 custom dice. My set appears to be well made, meaning no defects. The cards, tokens, and the box have the kind of artwork you would expect from Mars Attacks and all are high quality. The rulebook is slightly larger than your normal SJG rule sheet/book because it has an extra page. The tokens are made from nice solid stock as well.
Now for my issue, which isn’t much of an issue really. I don’t like that the box is so big. Unless, they are planning on adding expansions (and with this being SJG they probably will), there is no other reason to use such a large box, except to hold the rulebook/sheet. The already made it thinner than their normal Munchkin box, so why not make the length and width smaller as well. Overall though, it’s not a real complaint.
Gameplay: If you have played any of SJG’s other dice games (Zombie Dice or Dino Hunt) then you have some of the basic idea. You have to roll “X” on the dice to score, but this game also varies from the other dice games because of the new mechanics in it.
Basically you have a stack of City/Monument cards. You will shuffle and lay out 4 stacks of them and as many layers as you have players. The city/monument cards have to be in order because of the nuke symbols on them. Then place out the difficulty card (it’s the one with the Martian and either 1 or 2 nuke symbols on it). First player gets the first player token and the 10 dice. All players can get take their corresponding set of tokens. You will place the tokens on the cities you want to capture. You can have more than 1 token in play, but you can only roll for one city at a time.
Each city card is worth so many Victory Points(VP). They also have little ray gun symbols that denote how many ray guns you need to roll to capture that city. On the monument cards, instead of having ray guns, there are Martian heads. In the case of monuments you will want to capture martian heads equal to the amount shown on the cards. There are 2 city cards that have to have Nuke symbols to take them. With these cities you will be trying to get Nuke symbols, but be careful as you can still Nuke yourself out and end your turn, loosing all progress.
Speaking of which. While rolling the dice, I recommend start out with placing the Nuke symbols on the spaces provided on the city cards. This will tell you if, you’ve been nuked. If you are nuked you loose all progress on the city you are trying to take over. If you are rolling for Ray Guns you can continue rolling any dice that came up with the Martian Head and vice-versa. If you are trying to take a city that needs to be Nuked to take it you will only re-roll the Martian Head. When you re-roll, you re-roll all dice. If it looks like you might Nuke out, you may want to stop rolling.
Once one of the piles has been emptied, any players left before you reach the “First” player will get one final chance to take a city. Once the turn would come around to the first player the game is over. Count your Victory Points and Gloat.
Yes/No Recommend: I do,definitely recommend this game to people. I remember playing this when it was just stickers glued to dice & I wanted it then. Games like this are quick to learn, set-up, & play. They are also loads of fun and because there are a variety of different cities & monuments it is almost always a new game, so it won’t get stale. If you find that the table space you are trying to play on doesn’t have enough room, you can re-arrange the city tiles, just remember to keep them in an order that you can remember so that your Nuke sequence doesn’t get out of order. It really does make a difference.
Where To Get It: My copy of this game was special ordered for me by the guys at my store Rockin’ Rooster because they didn’t have one in stock. That is not to say that other game and hobby shops won’t have it. Check them first. I have not seen any information about this game being available at any of the Big Box stores.
If you would like more information about this game or any other SJG games visit their website at http://www.sjgames.com/dice/marsattacks/