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Star Wars: Battle of Hoth» Forums » Reviews

Subject: The Most Strategic Lego Board Game rss

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Graham Charlton
United Kingdom
New Barnet
Hertfordshire
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Game Play

As you’ve probably seen from the pictures, the board is basically a 7 by 4 grid of spaces, with links between them. Each intersection has room for a single unit - be that a squad of troops, an AT-AT, snowspeeder, etc. You start with your pieces at your end of the board and the object of the game is to either destroy all of your opponents pieces or get one of your pieces onto the opponent’s start line.

On your turn you can take two actions, split between your units as you like.

A Move action allows you to move along one of the links between spaces. You can’t end on an occupied space, but if you spend both actions moving you can thus move past a friendly unit. You can't jump over the gaps in the game board.

An Attack action allows you to make an attack roll against an enemy unit. Different units have different firing directions/distances - troops can only attack one space, snowspeeders and AT-AT’s three spaces, whilst the Tauntauns and AT-STs have the ability to attack 2 spaces in a diagonal. Unlike with moving, you CAN attack across the gaps in the board. The dice roll determines success, 4 in 6 chance of hitting. On a hit remove a piece from the attacked unit. A vehicle without a crew is destroyed after one more hit.

A final option for your turn is to use both actions bringing one of your two reinforcement pieces onto the map, but only if you’ve already lost something.

There are a few more complexities: the possibility with Luke and Darth of outright destroying a unit, the gun emplacements that are the only pieces that can fire twice in the same turn, hidden setup, special characters that allow for multiple hits.

And that’s it...

Thoughts

I was pleasantly surprised by this one. Whilst definitely still a kid’s game which I bought simply for the cool factor, the game itself is fun and has at least a moderate amount of strategy. Do you charge in all guns blazing or do you go more slowly, setting up fields of fire and ganging up on the opponent’s pieces?

Don’t get me wrong,- I think most games will be decided by the roll of the dice; but unlike most Lego games the decisions you make during the game will have an impact on the probabilities.

Finally the pieces - the usual excellent quality you expect from a Lego game. The AT-AT’s especially look wonderful, it’s amazing how much can be achieved with just a few Lego bricks.

6/10 - A vast improvement on Heroica.
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Geoffrey Ulman
United States
Reston
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Thanks for the session report! I've been quite interested in the Lego board games since they started releasing them, but have been turned off by the fact that they're essentially all designed as kids games.

Glad to hear that this one has at least some strategic decisions. Plus it's Star Wars, who could say no to that?
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Rich P
United Kingdom
Sheffield
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Thanks for the review. I've been looking for some more information on this game. It sounds like it's not too bad for a Lego game, although I'm a little surprised they've gone down an almost wargame route (although, with a name like 'Battle of Hoth', what did I expect?). They used to have a 'no realistic guns', kid-friendly policy but that seems to have fallen by the wayside with their licensed theme sets.
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Vince Lupo
United States
ALEXANDRIA
Virginia
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woodnoggin wrote:
Thanks for the review. I've been looking for some more information on this game. It sounds like it's not too bad for a Lego game, although I'm a little surprised they've gone down an almost wargame route (although, with a name like 'Battle of Hoth', what did I expect?). They used to have a 'no realistic guns', kid-friendly policy but that seems to have fallen by the wayside with their licensed theme sets.



It makes sense if you've played the Lego video games.
 
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Daniel Courtemanche
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What are the special rules for Vader and Skywalker, hidden setup etc?
 
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Graham Charlton
United Kingdom
New Barnet
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conedguy wrote:
What are the special rules for Vader and Skywalker, hidden setup etc?


There are special symbols on the dice that, if you roll them when Vader or Skywalker are attacking, completely destroy the opposing unit instead of just doing a single damage.

Hidden setup is simply that you place the box in the middle of the board to obscure the starting lineups and each player chooses which 4 of the 6 units they'll start with on the board.
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Ralph T
United States
Signal Hill
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How about Chewie, Han and Boba Fett, do they have special abilities?
 
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Eddy Bugnot
France
Romilly Sur Seine
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You play Han, Veers, Chewie and Boba in a variant. Basically, they can hit and reroll if you land on the "force" symbol on the die, making them more efficient than your average troop, but not AS good as vader and luke.
 
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Oivind Karlsrud
Norway
Aurskog
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I play this with my six year old son. He's really into Star Wars, so the theme was a perfect match. I'm trying to make an armchair general of him, just like me. The game is very simple, but at least it has some rules that are typical for wargames, and you get to choose what to do. Here's some elements he learns from this game:

- Limited number of actions (you get two actions each turn)
- Different units have different rules for firing
- Different victory conditions (eliminate the enemy or reach his home base)
- Rules for reinforcement
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Banjo
Australia
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I really enjoyed playing this game, and putting together was a lot more fun IMO than a lot of Lego's other boardgames.

As with all Lego games, it needs tweaks and 'house rules' for us older gamers to really have fun, but after I bought a couple of these sets (on sale) I had enough pieces to add new units and board pieces. Also, just having two tauntauns, two AT-STs, and more 'ground troops' to choose from (under the re-enfocement rules) makes the game more fun IMO.

I just REALLY wish we'd got a Princess Leia microfig!
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