Starbase Jeff

Cheapass Games, 1998, 2-4 players, no age range specified but I'd say ages 10 and up. Boy, "Cheapass" definitely describes this game. You get the equivalent of about 4 photocopied sheets of paper... In "Starbase Jeff" (gosh, isn't that a clever name?) each player gets a number of sections of a Starbase (4-way connections, 2-way connections, endcaps and bombs). You start out with 5 starbase sections and replenish as you go. On each turn, players select from their 5 starbase sections the one they want to play. Each starbase section has a "play value" (with the bombs having highest priority and the endcaps having the lowest). The player who chose the highest valued square gets to go first. If two or more players tie, they defer placing their squares until the next turn (this is kind of humorous, we played a game where some guy had his placements deferred for like six turns in a row). When it's your turn to place, you attach your square to the starbase someplace where it will fit (or, if you chose a bomb, you remove a piece from the space station). The strategy is in where you decide to place your square because you have to trace a route from where you place your new square back to a square of yours that you'd placed previously (paying cash to every player who has a square in between). Also, you have to pay to the bank to attach the two-way and four-way sections. Placing the endcaps earns you money from the bank. It's not a bad game, but I kind of doubt we'll be playing it much. It feels a little thin and there are plenty of other games I'd rather spend my time playing.

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