Saturday, February 16, 2008

Gaming With Grandma - 51

Another Saturday morning gaming session with my daughter (AKA Maddie) and my mother (AKA Grandma). Today we played RoboRally which is probably one of the first boardgames I'd ever purchased. I have the first edition Wizards of the Coast version which was published in 1994.

RoboRally is a game in which players control robots attempting to negotiate a factory floor maze of walls, conveyor belts, laser beams and pits to try to be the first to tag all of the checkpoint flags. The thing is that you must tag the flags in order which may mean you have to cross back and forth across one or more boards.

We played with the one board (the 'Cross'), with 4 flags and with each player having 5 lives.

The deadly 'Cross' board on around turn 9

Turn 1: Maddie falls into a pit. Grandma gets taken off the board by a conveyor belt. They both lose one life. I get within one space of Flag 1.

Turn 2: Maddie and Grandma both decide to come back 'powered down' on the starting space which means they miss the turn but don't play with two damage points. I touch Flag 1 and get within three spaces of Flag 2.

Turn 3: Maddie moves off the edge of the board and loses another life. Grandma moves along conveyor belts towards Flag 1. I touch Flag 2 and proceed towards Flag 3.

Turn 4: Maddie starts again on the starting space. She decides to return to the game immediately with her robot carrying two points worth of damage. Grandma falls into a pit and loses another life. I move into the part of the board which holds Flag 4. I must cross this area to get to Flag 3.

Turn 5: Maddie again moves off the edge of the board and loses another life. Grandma comes back at the starting space and rather than missing a turn 'powered down' moves towards Flag 1 with two damage points. I make my way towards Flag 3.

Turn 6: Maddie comes back again on the starting space. She decides to play immediately with the 2 damage points. Grandma gets closer to Flag 1. I get closer to Flag 3. Maddie's robot shoots Grandma's robot for one point of damage which Grandma immediately heals due to being on a 1-spanner square.

Turn 7: Maddie spins in place. Grandma is now only one space from Flag 1. I am only two spaces from Flag 3 but due to a poor selection of movement cards I end up headbutting a wall for all 5 register phases.

Turn 8: Maddie keep spinning. I can tell she isn't really enjoying this game. Grandma is very close to Flag 1 but just can't quite get there. I touch Flag 3 and make my way towards Flag 4 via the potentially dangerous conveyor belts in the centre of the board.

Turn 9: Maddie bangs back and forth between two walls. Grandma makes a mistake and moves off the edge of the board losing another life. I move onto the conveyor belt and am taken around the edge of the centre pit.

Turn 10: Maddie moves off the edge of the board losing another life. Grandma comes back onto the starting space with the two damage points. Due to a poor hand of movement cards she bangs into a wall for the entire turn. I end up only 1 space from Flag 4.

Turn 11: Maddie comes back on to the starting space and plays immediately with the two damage points. At the end of her moves she has moved further away from Flag 1. Grandma somehow manages to move off the edge of the board again losing another life. I touch Flag 4 and my robot spends four register phases spinning in place doing a victory dance.

Final scores were me 1st with 5 lives left and no damage, Grandma 2nd with 2 lives left and 2 damage, and Maddie 3rd with 2 lives left and 4 damage. I was the only one to tag all four flags. Neither Grandma or Maddie were able to even tag the first flag.

I've only played this game once in the last 10 years or so and it was so much fun playing it again today. Grandma said she enjoyed it and that it 'really made her brain think'. Maddie said it was 'boring'.

I would say that Maddie at only 6.5 years old is probably a little too young for this game. One must have a good ability to visualise in your mind objects moving and turning in all directions. I know that this game can sometimes be difficult for new players to get their heads around. I hope we can play it again soon.

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