Monday, January 27, 2020

#40: Roll for the Galaxy (Mark's Top 50 - 2020)

Roll for the Galaxy

  • rank: 73
  • rating: 7.70
Print Status
  • in print
Why It's On The List
  • An interesting take on the Race for the Galaxy universe... the dice manipulation combined with RftG phase activation makes for a very fluid tableau building game. Like RftG (and New Frontiers), different strategies are all possible depending on your mix of planets and technologies.
Tips & Tricks:
    • I have been surprised at the number of fellow gamers who dislike Race for the Galaxy (often complaining about the iconography) and yet seem to really enjoy Roll for the Galaxy. I think it may be - similar to New Frontiers - that you are not trying to make decisions on what planets/technologies to build secretly... if you have a question in Roll or New Frontiers about how something works, it's already public knowledge.
    • Don't forget about reassign powers... easy to get locked onto what's on the face of your die and miss a better play.
    • The other easy-to-miss (and important) rule: you can put goods (dice on planets) and workers (dice on tech you're building or worlds you're settling) back in the cup. Dice that aren't moving productively are often wasting time & space.
    • Both expansions are worth having - though I think that the Orb module of Rivalry is more interesting than the Deal module. (Orb is now my preferred way to play Roll with two players... thelslightly longer playing time lets you build more interesting engines.)
    • One note of warning - you can't play this with gamers you don't trust. Hidden manipulation of dice could be an issue.
    • I had the privilege of playing the playtest copy of this game with the designer (Wei-Hwa) a couple of years running at the Gathering of Friends... the finished version is even more polished than the amazingly polished prototype I played.
    • This is the third (3!) of five games with a Tom Lehmann design credit - which he shares with puzzle wizard and all-around nice guy, Wei-Hwa Huang.
    • There is a beta getting ready to start for a Roll for the Galaxy app - with an AI designed by Keldon (who did the incredible job on the Race for the Galaxy AI).


    Rob Cannon said...

    One of my top games. I love everything in the Galaxy family so far. I am not sure which one is my favorite.

    Mark (aka pastor guy) said...

    Not to spoil anything, Rob... but 3 of the 4 RftG games on this list - I totally get what you're saying. (And the other one is in my honorable mentions list.)