I ride mountain bikes and road bikes. Ask me how!
You can't connect the dots looking forward you can only connect them looking backwards
Let me start by saying that Gravwell is an amazing game and utterly deserving of its title of 2014's Mensa Select game of the year. The beautiful aspect of Gravwell is that the rules are extremely easy to learn, as there aren't a lot of them, and the resulting game play allows for high replayability value. Gravwell is a "get from Point A to Point B" kind of game and the first person that gets to Point B is the winner. Simple enough. It's at that point that any similarity to this game genre ends. In Gravwell, you play as the captain of a spaceship trapped in the Gravwell, or a gravity field, and your goal is to make it to the Warp Gate. Sounds easy enough, but you will have to contend with the gravity field that all of your opponents create! This means on any turn, your space ship can move backwards or forwards. It all depends on how all of the other players play. How do you move backwards you ask? On each turn, all players choose a movement card from their hand and reveal it at the same time. Each movement card begins with a different letter of the alphabet. Once revealed, players resolve the cards in alphabetical order and take turns in alphabetical order from A to Z. Yes, this means you never know who will take what turn every round! You may go first in the round or you may go last! It all depends on what all other players play.
Some cards push you towards the closest spaceship, some push you away from the closest spaceship, and some just pull everything in towards where your spaceship is (the gravitational field revolves around you!)
The winning player is the first player to get out of the Gravwell first into the Warp Gate or if after six rounds of play, no one makes it out, the winner is the person closest to the Warp Gate!
Easy game mechanics. I taught my group how to play in under 10 minutes. Reminds me of the old Othello advertisement: takes a minute to learn but a lifetime to master. I think the same phrase applies to Gravwell.
High-replayability. The game stays interesting because you're always trying to determine what all the other players are going to play and then guess and second guess your decision. I highly recommend this game to players of all levels from those who are novice board gamers to those who are looking for an interesting twist on "getting to the end from A to B" style of board games. Gravwell is sure to not disappoint.
The not-so-good: the spaceships that represent each player are on glued by a small plastic peg onto the a round, plastic stand. The plastic peg to spaceship connection is a bit fragile. I'm pretty careful with game pieces and stuff in general, but this seemed to break very easily. It's not a problem to superglue back on, but it's something to take note of.