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Subject: Session Report rss

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Susan Rozmiarek
United States
Liberty Hill
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This is a very nifty checkers-like game of racing kangaroos. It comes in an irritatingly large box that is mostly air. The bits are nice, though – big, chunky, colorful wooden kangaroos and a big vinyl map. The map is a grid of spaces with a pond, or billabong in the center and a start/finish line. The kangaroos race around the billabong in a circle. You get to move one of your kangaroos each turn. The movement rules are the heart of the game and are quite clever. A kangaroo can move like the King in Chess, one space in any direction, or he can jump over another kangaroo. When jumping, he jumps in a straight line (orthogonally or diagonally) such that he lands on the other side of the kangaroo and ends up the same distance away from the other kangaroo as he was before. For example, if my kangaroo is two spaces behind the kangaroo I want to jump, my kangaroo will land two spaces in front of that kangaroo. The thing is, in doing so, the spot he lands on has to be unoccupied and he can only jump over one kangaroo at a time. He can, however, jump over as many kangaroos on a single turn as he is legally able, one at a time. A clever series of jumps can move a kangaroo quite a long distance. You are constantly trying to set yourself up for long jumps or series of jumps, while also trying to block opponents from being able to do the same.

Ed and I had both played this several times, but it had been a while. Mike and Adam were new to the game. They both made the mistake of stranding a kangaroo too far behind the pack. Similar to the game the Cartegena, you often have to work from the back, being careful not to leave pieces so far behind by themselves that they can’t take advantage of chains created by the other pieces. Now that they have played the game, I doubt either of them will let that happen again.

I like this game a lot. It’s simple, elegant and makes me feel clever when I spot a killer move.

Results: Susan-1st, Ed -2nd, Adam-3rd, Mike-4th

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