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Subject: "Forbidden Island" style co-op for 5 or 6 players? rss

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Matt Kruczek
United Kingdom
Colchester
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I'm looking for something that's as easy to teach and play as "Forbidden Island" that works with 5 or 6 players, possibly more.

I do a lot of work of team-work and developing strategies, and Forbidden Island always goes over well when I've got a small enough group. It doesn't take long to explain, most people get the idea of what's going on quite quickly and it plays in about half a hour, making it a good exercise for demonstrating and exploring teamwork.

The thing is that most of the time I've got groups of 5+ to work with, and pairing people up to play one character doesn't quite work. I've considered Flash Point: Fire Rescue, but 45 minutes is a fraction too long; the roles make the basic game too easy, but the rules of the advanced version are just a step too involved to be ideal. It's not so much about the complexity of the rules, more that the extra time needed to explain the fire truck, hotpots etc eats into the time.

I basically need to be able to say "This is what you need to do. This is what you can do. This is what the game does. These are your special abilities" and it to be clear in less that five minutes. And by their second turn a player is thinking about strategy and teamwork rather that the mechanics.

 
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S. R.
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No special abilities, no roles, but also no 6+ players:
Hanabi
Quickly played, even quicker explained. It does not come any quicker, easier and genius than that little coop, IMO.

You could also take a look at Red November, although there are a few things that probably won't strike your fancy (mainly that you can die and then are out of the game, sometimes even without being able to do anything to prevent it). It's for six, is quirky, and not too complicated. However, if you abhor special rules, then the items might also throw you off.

Other than that, I'd also be interested to find a coop that is less than 45 minutes. Especially for the bigger crowds.

Another idea - why do you assign roles? Granted, some games need players (like Hanabi), but all coops can be played as an outsider looking in, with various numbers of roles. If you just state:
"we have to get these people through this situation, and that is their ability", then that should be working. In any game where there is no hidden information, that is...
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Tom Scutt
United Kingdom
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If you want co-op and special abilities in that time frame I think you might be best off trying to come up with variants for Forbidden Island or Flash Point: Fire Rescue

There's a nice 5-Player variant for Forbidden Island here: Our 5 Player Variant/Solution

And for Flashpoint I think you could use the Basic Rules with the Role Cards but increase the starting number of fires to make it more challenging.
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Moe45673
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Toronto
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Escape: The Curse of the Temple plays in 10 minutes
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Pasi Ojala
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Get the Imperial Assault Campaign module for Vassal from http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module:Star_Wars:_Imperial_Assault
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Room 25 (1-6 players) has various game modes. It is quite light and quick, but the suspicion mode gives a bit of paranoia to the game. The difficulty is also adjustable, and rules are around the same complexity than Forbidden Island.

Red November is actually for 1-8 players. With less than 4 players though, you should still have about 4 gnomes in play. And usually you do have a chance to avoid dying. The most helpful tip is to not drink grog and pass out. It still is possible to be locked into a room with fire or flood, but the situation is pretty desperate then, so I don't think the game will go on much longer anyway.
 
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S. R.
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Thanks for the correction. I wasn't sure if it was more than 6, anymore. Although the situation can be really bad in Red November without your own doing, and already quite early in the game. If you are locked in a room that becomes flooded right before it is your turn, you will drown afterwards. And there is nothing you can do, as you cannot open the door by yourself. The thing is, rooms are chosen by die roll. So if you have bad luck, that will happen to you. It certainly did to me.
But this takes us off-topic...
 
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Kevin B. Smith
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Nothing comes to mind. You might browse through PeakHope's comprehensive list of purely cooperative games (looking at player counts). If you find something promising, you could post follow-up questions to ask if folks have experience with it.
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Geoff Hall
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Castle Panic goes up to 6 players and is about the same level of complexity as Forbidden Island.
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Matt Kruczek
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Thanks for all the replies. For some reason I'd got Castle Panic as having a maximum of four players, not sure where from. It had been hovering around the edges of my "to buy" list, and I think it's now going to be my next purchase. Thank you all!
 
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Thomas
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What about Space Alert or Defenders of the Realm
 
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Paul Nowak
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You have paid retail for the last time.
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The original Forbidden Island is Pandemic, and with Pandemic: On the Brink it is a 5 player game.
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LargeGoblin
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DreadFuzzy wrote:
Castle Panic goes up to 6 players and is about the same level of complexity as Forbidden Island.

I was gonna post this. I love this game for some reason.
 
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Liam
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+1 Castle Panic
+0.5 Red November
 
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