The Maze and The Race: Two Xion Productions Games Kickstarter Preview
|Game(s): The Maze, The Race + Teleportals (expansion)||Age: 8+|
|Publisher: Xion Productions||Time: 30 minutes|
|Players: 2- 6, 2- 4||Replayability: 5/10|
The Maze and The Race
I haven’t seen a two for one deal done like this before. The Maze and The Race are two board games by Xion Productions. These are two board games that share some of the same components, but offer two completely different gameplay experiences. The Maze is a race to the finish, you and your opponents make your way through a labyrinth of twisting and turning rooms. You will be rolling your dice in order to activate the corresponding numbered rooms and rotate them. Everyone will then make their move 1 tile from where they were. First one to the finish wins! This specific deluxe box will come with The Maze’s expansion, Teleportals. With teleportals, you can divide the board into different islands, setting up the island labyrinths and having the teleportals move you to the other them. The Race is a drag racing experience racing your cards up to 5 tiles of road. Each player will handle their own racer as well as a matching dice. You will roll your color specific dice as well as rotating controller of the boost dice. Move your racer as many roads forward based on the dice roll and repeat until someone passes the finish line. If you’d like, per each race you may use your boost once (calling it out before having it rolled) which can give you that competitive edge.
Both board games represent a nice design of simplicity in the form of a racing game. With just a few mechanics and a few components, this deluxe set offers a very vanilla experience that is fun and easy to learn. I think this game would be perfect for any age range, but can easily target the younger audience because of accessibility. Xion Productions excels at formulating a complete and unbroken board game with the fewest components and mechanics necessary. It’s simple yet effective. I enjoyed both these titles and find they can accommodate a great filler or a go-to for a family gathering.
I played both board games back to back with a group of four. We began with The Race, each choosing our racer of choice and setting up the board. I found that the best option for me was to wait to use my boost until toward the end of the race. I think what we enjoyed was the gamble of calling out our boost because of how randomly generated the outcome can be. With an eight-sided die, you either can move up almost two tiles or barely scratch one (each tile is 5 movements). We played up to three rounds and were having a very close neck and neck. I eventually won (crazzzyyyyy I knowwwww)! But was closely followed with my nephew right behind me. After we cleaned up The Race, we setup The Maze. My nephew loves building (he’s a fan of minecraft, terraria, and legos) so I think he enjoyed The Maze setup more than the game itself. He built this totally elaborate labyrinth with portals and such. My goal was to (hopefully) roll the dice in ways to hinder my opponents. I wanted to rotate the tiles they were on so they would have to backtrack. Even though most of our players were completely scattered, we seemed to have all slowed down toward the second island my nephew setup. The island was full one “1” numbered tiles (meaning a dice roll of 1 can rotate them), meaning we were seeing a lot of twisting and turning–which had us backtrack a lot. In the end my nephew one, but I’m under the impression it’s because he was the artist, he knew his way around the board.
In The End
They’re definitely a quick and easy duo to process and play. They don’t carry to many components and the rules are very straightforward. It’s accessible to any age or gamer experience type and can most likely be enjoyed for a few playthroughs. The amount of tiles in The Maze make the uniqueness endless as the board could be setup any way you could imagine. The teleportal expansion definitely did the base game a huge favor because of the sand box style setup it has. The Race is a bit too simple for my liking, but my nephew seemed to love it (he’s 8 by the way, I talk about him a lot). But, I think what I did enjoy. Was pitting humans against racers (because I wanted to be green, and there are no green cars).
You will like this game if you enjoy simple design and simple experiences. These games are not challenging but add a new flavor to board gaming. If you’re looking for simple experiences to introduce to younger players or very novice players who want to race or explore mazes–check these out.
You will not like this game if you want a game that involves more than one or two components and mechanics. These titles will not be challenging. However, they are fun for a few quick and simple games.