Tuesday, April 07, 2009

#20: Rabatz auf dem Riesenrad

Rabatz auf dem Riesenrad
  • designer: Klaus Teuber
  • publisher: Klee
  • date: 2000
  • BoardGameGeek rank/rating: not ranked/5.00
  • age: 3+
  • # of players: 2-4
  • print status: OOP
  • cost: 29,99 EU (Amazon.de)
The literal translation of the title is "Rats on a Ferris Wheel" which sounds more like the title of one of my wife's nightmares (playing in a double feature with "You Took Off Your Energy Mask & You Were Cameron Diaz") rather than a delightful game system for the smallest gamers in your house. (I have been corrected - thank you! - it is actually "Ruckus on the Ferris Wheel". But my joke about rats & my wife is good enough that I'm leaving it.)

The box is large - imagine a Kosmos/Mayfair square box that began eating the Super-Size Me diet. Of course, that large box is there to hold the ferris wheel contraption which is the heart of the game. It has six 2-seater "cars", 20 indentations in a line to hold the plastic rat pieces (the line even goes up a small set of plastic stairs), and indentations in the base for the custom die (with rat prints) and balloon markers (cardboard) necessary to play some of the games.

The 20 rats (who come in 4 different day-glo colors) have various junk food treats on the bottom of their pieces - indicating that they too have fallen prey to the commercial lie the four basic food groups are pizza, cookies, candy & ice cream. (I would go on & on about the plot to undermine our health with these evil substances, but I need to pick up a slice & some Ben'n'Jerry's to stave off my personal hunger.)

There are a variety of games in the rules:
  • the simple suggestion that the components are great fun for small kids to play with
  • a couple of simple roll'n'move games where you're trying to get all of your rats onto the ride
  • a number of memory variants that are made more difficult by the turning of the wheel

Yep, that's it. It's a new weird wonderful way to play Memory... and that would be it, if my boys didn't enjoy playing with it so much. The increasing difficulty of the different games means that we're still playing it long after a number of other "little kid" games have gone to the Great Kid Game Closet In The Sky... and our youngest is just getting into this kind of stuff.

The age range on the box actually says 2 /12 +... but realistically the "get your rats on the wheel" games are accessible for 3 year olds playing with adults and the memory games are pretty much age 4+.


TMW said...

Actually, "Rabatz" doesn't mean "rats" but rather "racket", "ruckus" or "kicking up a fuss".

Mark (aka pastor guy) said...

I appreciate the correction!