St Ives, Sydney
This one didn’t produce as much fun as I expected. In picking your gladiator teams, there are some fancy means of
trading off number of die rolls in each fight vs who rolls first vs soaking up hits and the like. From then on, pick a fight between two teams that gives you the best chance of gaining points (and weakening an opponent) whilst not losing points, roll dice once, hopefully kill part of a team, opponent rolls dice once with hopefully a weakened team (ie less dice). That ’s it. Next player picks a fight. Repeat. Round and round the table. Death by a thousand cuts as teams slowly get weakened, wither and die.
To make the fun, we imbued the game with grave insults and calls of cowardice, but in the end, it all seemed a little soul-less and less than satisfying. Tally the kills at the end to determine who rolled the dice the best, and got picked on the least, over 50mins. Little decision making, bad rolls are the expected, the occasional wildly successful result didn’t dramatically alter the game. So the only real reason to play is for the role-playing I guess.
The best roller proved to be Rick, with a savvy implementation of the ‘roll-in-the-bowl’ strategy after early luck had swung Warwick’s way. At the other end of the table, James and I engaged in the “lace gloves at 20 paces” fight. With neither of our teams ever losing anything, at least we didn’t get picked on ourselves until later on. Nick was an early tamer of the animals as a result of Warwick’s and Rick’s rampages.
Scores: Rick 17, Pat 16, James & Warwick 14, Nick 11
A rating of 5 after 1 play; average game, take it or leave it. The rating is mainly for the theme and good bits, which lend a good ambience to the occasion, making it a saving grace. What this game really needs is to be played on a huge craps table where you can really let the dice FLIIIIING and allow your FLIIIIIING to express the emotion of the pit, the hack, the drama, the life and death of it all. Piddly litte dice rolls in front of you on the table don’t do I’m afraid. It needs the role-play.