2009 Game Award evaluation
I like the graphical layout of the board. I like the fact that it uses the Treehouse die.
There are several ambiguities and omissions; here are my guesses of the intended answers:
- What does "release and navigate" mean? "Move". That is, a roll of 1 & 2 moves the small piece, 3 & 4 the medium piece, 5 & 6 the large piece. (Assuming that's true, it was a nice change from the usual in pyramid games where the large pieces are the slowest but strongest. This rule has serious consequences, though, discussed below.)
- What does "approaching" mean? "Landing". That is, you send an opponent's piece back to start only if you end your piece's move on its space, not if you just pass over it.
- What if you land on one of your own pieces? You stack on it; either piece is free to move.
- Must you get to Finish by exact count? No.
- Can you carry out a Dig, Swap or Tip on an opponent's piece in Finish? No.
- For the Dig action, do you send the opponent's piece acc. to its own pip count, or the pips on the piece that landed on the '?' space? The opposing piece's pip count.
- If you move one of your own pieces onto a '?' space because of a Treehouse die action, can you roll that die again? Yes.
If my interpretations are correct, this is a ver-r-r-ry long game, which isn't worth it given how little choices one has. Because certain die rolls only move certain spaces, that first row of spaces ends up having pieces constantly landing on top of each other and sending each other back to start.
Some possible fixes include:
- Letting any roll being used with any piece, perhaps with different movement point costs for different sizes.
- When landing on an opponent's piece, stack on it instead of sending it back to start. Pieces underneath others cannot move normally, but then you could have Treehouse die results do things to change stacks around.
My assessment for the award: this doesn't make the cut.