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Subject: Alias "The Party Game" of the last decade - review... rss

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Raiko Puust
Estonia
Keila
Harju Maakond
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Raiko & Agnes Forever! Feel the Love and Feel the Warmth. Happiness is 2 hugs plus 3 kisses every hour...:D (http://mrboardgames.wordpress.com/)
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Addicted Estonian gamer with big heart and direct winning attitude. Need any help with something, just ask. Need some GG for something, just ask. Need something to be translated, just ask. Meanwhile, behave! :D (http://mrboardgames.wordpress.com/)
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I chose for my second review game called Alias. I don't have to explain something about the game to people from eastern Europe, but all the other really have no clue about the game!

ALIAS



There are 400 cards
6 playing pieces
one hour glass
and a game board (two sided in the newer edition)

Introduction

There are many cards, each card has 6 words written on it. Each word has a number, from 1 to 6. Words are various - from very easy to very hard. Some are made of several words defining one thing (example: "Silver Medal"). There is also a board with tiles. Each tile is marked with number from 1 to 6.

So, players play 2 vs.2. Each team gets a figure representing it on the board. Their goal is to get through the board. Each time a figure stops one team member must take a card and not show it to other team member. After that a sand clock (also included) is set. The Player must get the other team member to say the word that is written on card by using sentences to describe the word. For example, if the word is "Silver Medal", a player can say "something that a sportsmen wins at the Olympic games". But if other team member says just "Medal", it isn't correct. Then the first player must further define what the hint might be. Second player can answer as often as he/she wants until the time runs out. If time runs out or first player accidentally uses the word which is written in card, the team looses a turn.

Based on Alias success, Tactic has kept publishing re-implemented versions of the same basegame, such as Fame Alias, Junior Alias, Junior Alias: Travel, Muumi Alias, Family Alias, Party Alias, High School Musical Party Alias, Metal Mania Alias, Alias Travel and has also licensed Noteability as Muusikki Alias.

Awards

* 2009 www.BoardGamer.ru Party Game of the Year.

The game was originally published in 1989 by Tactic games (then under Nelospelit brand). Alias is one of the most sold games in more than 10 different countries and it is published in more than 15 different languages.

Components

There are 400 cards in the original version. The number changes in other aliases! The Original Alias (republished 2009) had words only on one side of the card. Those words are numbered from 1 to 6 Picture:

But the game New Alias, same alias as old version, with little difference. The new cards don't have anymore words from 1 to 6 but 8 words on one side fronted by a picture and 4 words on the other side of the card, also fronted with picture! Picture of those cards:


In the old version, little pit harder on my opinion, was just six random words. These word could be nouns, verbs or adverbs.
The new version had system to make the guessing little pit easier.
When watching card with 8 words you notice numbers and pictures. Those numbers from 1 to 4 all represent nouns. The pictures however.
Photo camera represents things (not living). Picture of chefs hat represent persons and jobs. Picture on A is adverb and picture of V is Verbs.
So knowing what you have to guess makes it easier.
The other side of the card is for the second variant of the game. you see there 4 words. The upper word with the picture of round thing striped through that mean nature and world. The picture of the cup mean sports. The picture of two theatrical faces mean famous people and the last one is old saying around here! In each card they are missing one word!

Hourglass

In each Alias there is hourglass. It lasts 45 second in old alias. 60 seconds in new version! Picture of that hourglass:



Playing pieces

In each version there are six playing pieces. That mean that there could be up to 12 player. But no one says that you couldn't just use more pieces from other games. Picture of the pieces:


Game board

Old board have only one side. The board goes around in "U" kind of shape. There are only numbers from 1 to six on the board just like on the cards. Some of the numbers are lighter than others. What they mean, little later. Picture of the board with russian edition:


The new board has two sides! One side for the 8 worded side and the other for the 4 worded side. They shape the same and the tiles on the board mean same as before - tile equals same symbol on the card. Difference is that new board have pins in exchange for lighter tiles.
Picture of the side for 8 worded side cards:

Picture of the side for 4 worded sided cards:


Game

Game is played in teams. At least 2 teams (4 players) is needed to play Alias. They randomly select team who starts and in the team they randomly decide who start guessing and who explaining. The other team gives the one number or symbol and the turn around the hourglass. Then the one teammate start explaining without looking at the card before the hourglass have been turned over. Then the explainer must not use the word he/she is trying to explain in any form and in other language if that is not said before. Every word they missed is minus one point and every word they got (exactly like on the card) is plus one point. And the rest of the game is played like that. They explain the symbol they are standing on. Quite easy.
Now the lighter tiles (pinned tiles in new version). Once one team land on the tile, their next round is opened round.
That mean that the one who has to explain, will take six cards without looking at the card and start explaining them one by one WITHOUT time limit. And ALL players can guess. The one who guesses WILL get that card/point for her/his team.
One rule is that when you are explaining and time runs out, then every player can shout out the correct answer and who ever yells gets the card and point.

Winning the game

Your team wins when you reach back to start/finish!



What I think of the game

I actually think that this is the best party game available. I wish that USA could get that game soon, then they would understand what all europeans feel about the game.
Very good game, recommend to everyone out there!


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Adam Cirone
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Mansfield
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This games reminds me a lot of the game Taboo, which was published in the USA around 1989 as well. In Taboo, a player must give hints so that his team can guess the word on his card, but he cannot use any of several common-related-words that are also listed on the card. While the scoring and team mechanics between these two games are different, the central mechanic of giving clues to guess a specific word is the same.

Personally, I am not into these types of games, but you did a good job of explaining how Alias works, enough so that I could see how it is similar, and different, when compared to other games.
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Raiko Puust
Estonia
Keila
Harju Maakond
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Raiko & Agnes Forever! Feel the Love and Feel the Warmth. Happiness is 2 hugs plus 3 kisses every hour...:D (http://mrboardgames.wordpress.com/)
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Addicted Estonian gamer with big heart and direct winning attitude. Need any help with something, just ask. Need some GG for something, just ask. Need something to be translated, just ask. Meanwhile, behave! :D (http://mrboardgames.wordpress.com/)
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Thanks. I would like to play that Taboo! It seems to be my kind of game
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