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Paul Reinerfelt
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Retro is a Swedish trivia game that focuses on what you remember of the past decades. Apart from organising the questions according to the decade they belong to (instead of subject matter which is more common) there is not much focus on the years as such.

The game itself comes in a box and the contents are well organised inside. The game board is sturdy (comparable to Trivial Pursuit) and the box includes a pad of paper and several pencils (these will eventually need replacing but it's nice not having to scrounge up half a dozen pencils every time). The only (small) complaint is for the small chits that indicate which decades you have completed, they are light and easily lost. There is not much art (except for the outside of the box) and the game board is rather plain (although in full colour). The price of Retro varies widely depending on the source but I've bought two copies for 250 SEK (approx. $40) at the local book-store.

The rules are easy to learn (similar to most trivia games) and the rules that are unique to Retro are easy enough to figure out. An exception is that the rules as written can be read either to support that you get to roll again if you answer correctly or that you do not. Personally, I prefer to read it as not.

While the purpose of a trivia game is to challenge your brain (at least your memory), the actual mechanics of Retro are not difficult. Apart from rolling your die, moving around the board and answering trivia questions from different decades (often things like sports events, tv-shows, fashions or music) one important step is making lists of things. This occurs at the "decade headquarters" (similar to the category headquarters in Trivial Pursuit). When a player stops here (without already having that decade), a list category (for example "Funniest tv-show", "Most popular politician" or "Worst food") is read from a card and everyone writes their own list of up to five items from that category. Players then get points for every item that someone else also had. Player with most points win the marker for that decade. (Ties are broken by the number of trivia questions you have correctly answered.)

This aspect of the game is helped by some familiarity with your opponents. It is also something that requires a bit of consideration of the age distribution of the players. Either a group with similar ages or an even distribution of ages would be fine. A large gap in ages is a problem. I once played with my siblings and our grandparents which was not so good, the problem was that the lists made by respective age group had almost nothing in common, thus leading to less points earned and less fun overall (much of the appeal of Retro comes from the evoked memories "Oh, that one! I had forgotten about that!") Other than that, it is great fun to hear what the others came up with.

A game of Retro takes about an hour to play and there is not much waiting between turns. The turns that are the longest are the list-making ones but everyone is involved in those so this is not a problem. I would probably not play more than one game in a sitting but the replay value is still very good.

Overall, I recommend this game. It is a good, light game for a small group of friends and the questions are such that no-one needs to feel ashamed for "not knowing anything".

Theme: nuclearnuclearblankblankblank
Price: blankblank
Quality: goldencamelgoldencamelgoldencamelblankblank
Artwork: buildingbuildingblankblankblank
Ease of learning: indigoindigoindigoindigoblank
Weight: blankblankblank
Luck: d10-7d10-7d10-7blankblank
Waiting: snoresnoreblankblankblank
Length: clovecloveblankblankblank
Replayability: 5vp5vp5vp5vpblank
Overall: thumbsupthumbsupthumbsupblankblank

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