Dragonlance


TSR, 1988, 2-6 players, ages 10 and up. This is a pretty bad game. On the plus side, the rules are pretty short and easy to understand. You'll be able to set up and get playing in just a few minutes. Each player has six flying dragons that they move around a hex board. The object is to capture the "Dragonlance" from the center square and bring it back to one of your starting "lair" hexes. Other players use their dragons to either kill your dragons or steal the lance for themselves. A die is rolled for movement (both horizontally and vertically). To move up and down, little plastic wafers are placed under (or removed from under) the dragon pieces (a very lame system that quickly becomes irritating). Combat is also accomplished with die rolls. The attacker almost always wins because they get to add any preceding movement as a bonus to their combat roll. For example, if you roll a 10 for movement you can move next to an enemy dragon, circle around them a few times and then attack (and generally win easily). There's very little point in going after the lance and trying to win the game while other dragons are still on the board. If you're in defensive mode, you are going to die. It quickly becomes obvious that the way to win the game is to attack, attack, attack. The one game we played (and there won't be another) went to the player with one dragon left standing at the end. The playing pieces are horrendously cheesy. The little bases that the dragons stand on constantly fall off whenever you pick one up to move it and that crazy little gate assembly thingy that sits in the middle of the board is a total joke. It's supposed to mount to the board by means of little plastic feet that sit in holes in the board. Problem is, the feet are way too short and constantly pop out of the holes. Moving dragons and their giant stacks of altitude markers in and around that monstrosity is such a pain in the neck that eventually we just dismantled it and tossed it back in the box. It doesn't really serve a purpose anyway, the colored gates through which the various colored dragons are permitted to go are clearly marked right on the board. I guess it's for the kiddies (for whom this game was clearly designed). The game is divided into "basic" and "advanced" sections. We didn't bother with the advanced rules as all they seemed to do was add to the complexity of the game without really doing anything to address the basic flaws of the game.



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