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Yani
Switzerland
Zürich
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Here are my thoughts, duplicated from my rating section. FWIW, I consider this one of the best games of this Essen's crop. Contrary to other folks, I didn't find it difficult to figure out which mini is which. Just look at their saddle, if you can see it almost fully, it is the Sprinteur (who rides standing)..

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Flamme Rouge
An excellent, yet light bicycle racing game. Using two different riders, each one with a different deck (but same as any other player's), you are called to best manage your energy to race first to the finish. There is an aspect of luck, since you draw 4 and play 1, most of which can be mitigated by knowing your deck distribution and calculating some elementary probabilities. Decisions are usually interesting, at times trivial, but also at times pivotal for the success of the team. When do you try to pull your Sprinteur forward by burning your Rouleur, when do you block others?

Since the game is very simple to play, due to the fact that most of the complexity is baked into the decks and rules, this is a game that can be played in as light or as heavy a fashion as one wishes. Gamers will appreciate the hard solo mode, as well as the campaign game that adds quite a bit of complexity and smoothes out the probability curve. I can imagine many possible expansions with different tiles, different rider abilities (and decks), events, and a set of more elaborate subsystems to increase the complexity.

A solid quality design, and, if Lautapelit manages enough distribution in Germany, an early Spiel des Jahres candidate. This could be a viable alternative to Ticket to Ride, and has put Asger Harding Granerud, together with his most excellent "13 Days: The Cuban Missile Crisis", on a must-watch designer list. He has a knack for simplicity and design elegance that is difficult to find today. Highly recommended.

+ 2-pages of rules, yet results in a plausible racing simulation
+ no hidden trackable information, everything is open
+ quick to play, and easy to teach also to casual gamers
+ pure fun
+ lots of setup variability and a ampaign mode that seems to kick it up one notch
+ zero downtime
+ great art and components

= some mitigate-able luck
= this is not a deep strategy game, but a race-oriented tactical struggle

- the card backs are unnecessarily confusing with the fronts

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Benji
Switzerland
Gurmels
FR
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One of the absolute highlights for me. As you said: quick, simple and fun, yet with way more tactical possibilities than are apparent from just reading the rules. I really hope there will be expansions for this one!

(let's see... cobblestone: card values -2, no slipstream, no exhaustion )
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René Christensen
Denmark
Solroed Strand
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And more teams!!
Orange, Yellow, White and Purple!!!
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Asger Harding Granerud
Denmark
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Thanks a bunch for the review! Really glad you liked it, and hope more people will give the 'gem' a chance

Benji68 wrote:
One of the absolute highlights for me. As you said: quick, simple and fun, yet with way more tactical possibilities than are apparent from just reading the rules. I really hope there will be expansions for this one!

(let's see... cobblestone: card values -2, no slipstream, no exhaustion )


If you want to try the cobblestone rules I prefer, they are simply like this: 6-9 long section(s) of 1 wide lanes. No slipstreaming.

As the titel of the review alludes to, one of the advantages of the system is that the complexity can be 'baked in' to the tracks and decks, thus 'hiding' the rules.

Happy racing
Asger Granerud
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René Christensen
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There is some overtaking in copplestone areas, so perhaps it should just cost 2 MPs to pass another rider?
And you can only overtake one rider if there is a vacant spot in front.
That means you can't overtake two or more riders on copplestone in the same turn.
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