Originally posted at www.throatpunchgames.com, a new idea everyday!
Producer– Greater Than Games
Price– $40 here https://www.amazon.com/FABLED-NEXUS-Lazer-Ryderz-Game/dp/B01MTG3KQH PREORDER!
Set-up/Play/Clean-up– 30-60 minutes (2-4 players)
TL; DR-Lisa Frank and Saturday Morning Cartoons made X-Wing! 93%
Basics- PREVIOUSLY ON LAZER RIDERZ! Our heroes and travelers of the void ride on lazer rails attempting to secure enough prisms to power themselves on their various journeys. From an undead cosmonaut drifting through space for reasons unknown to a hammerhead shark searching for the fabled blood nexus for her breeding grounds, each hero has a reason they need the prisms, but only one emerges victorious in this episode!
The game starts by each player placing one unclaimed prism on the table equidistant from the other prisms and at places agreed upon by all players. Then players select a gear to start in from one to five. Highest gear starts each turn, but if you and another player select the same gear, both spin out and start at 1! The player with the highest gear is the first player, setting the tie breaker marker to their left. From now on all ties are broken using this marker. Players then get turn markers based on their speed with ties broken by the tie marker. Players select a place along the edge of the table for their start selection, and the game begins!
Turns are quick. In turn order, each player does the following: change their speed by one or stay at their current, place a piece of the lazer track, see if they crash, and then see if they score. Every character has a speed indicator that shows who they are, and at their start, they can change their speed by one, up or down, if they want. Then they place a piece of track. Tracks come in two types: straightaways and turns. Straightaways are simply just go straight. Turns are where luck comes in. When you place a turn piece, you then have to roll. If you roll equal to or higher than your speed, you do the turn. If you are lower, then you go straight! Finally, if you roll the grouchy symbol, you turn, but you spin out to first gear! Next in your turn, you see if you crash. If your lazer path goes over another path or off the table, you crash. You have to your start marker back at the edge of the table and next turn you start from there. You also remove the piece of lazer path you crash into, freeing up more table space for others. Finally, you see if you claim a prism. If your path goes over a prism, you score. If it was a neutral prism, you place one of your unclaimed one at the end of your current lazer path, stand up, close your eyes, and gently throw the neutral prism onto the table. If it’s a claimed prism, you replace it with one of yours, then hand the original prism to the owner. You turn your marker over to show you went, and then the next player plays. After everyone has gone, you check to see who has the fastest gear, change turn order markers based on speed, then continue until someone has claimed three!
Mechanics– This one is a mix. If you like X-Wing with quasi-dexterity game elements, you will have a blast. If you hate estimating distances, don’t like randomness controlling most of your actions, and just tossing stuff on the table, then you will hate this one. My wife and I fell into these alternating camps. It’s a fun filler game, but don’t expect too much depth from this one. If fun filler racer is up your alley, then this one’s mechanics are what you’re looking for. 4/5
Theme-The 80’s are back, baby! This one’s box to pieces are all well done and completely fit the theme well. As a solid child of the 80’s, the box feels like those padded VCR cassette boxes, the hologram/gem coating is amazing, and there is a space soldier with a mullet! FANTASTIC! 5/5
Instructions-The instructions here feel paradoxically too much and too little. There are a lot of words here for as simple a racing game as this is, but not many pictures to show how the game plays. I’d like more show and less tell to this book. It will get the rules across quickly, but for what this is, it doesn’t need as much as it has. 4/5
Execution– I love what’s here, with one small exception. The boxes are amazing. They look worn like my childhood video boxes. The plastic inserts are the right amount of crappy. They hold the pieces well but feel like the cheapo plastic that the used to put VHS cassettes in to. The art is on point, and the lazer pieces look great and are the perfect shades of neon. The only thing this thing is missing is leg warmers! But, my one complaint is the trays. The trays don’t fit well, and pieces can fall out. That’s annoying. I like the big box slipcover to hold everything, but I’d like a bit more leeway in the box as I’ve had to pick up pieces from my wood paneled and spray painted van the first day I took the game to the arcade. If you want to see all the pieces check out our unboxing video here! https://youtu.be/eCUn3hVJzg0 4.5/5
Summary-This is a blast from the past. If you like racing games and trackless racers at that, this is your game. If you’re a child of the 80s looking for video store nostalgia, this is your game. If neither of those is you, then maybe don’t sit down to play this one. It’s good, but it is most definitely not your game! I wish the box would be a bit better constructed, but overall, it’s not built badly. As for me, I’m gonna blare the hulkamania theme on repeat, put my old Bravestarr videos in the VCR, get my giant tinted glasses on, and play this in my wood paneled basement. 93%