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Easter Island is a mysterious island in the South Pacific. Its inhabitants have long since vanished without a trace except for the giant Moai. These giant statues are so large and heavy that modern man has had a difficult time recreating them without modern tools. Tools the original inhabitants most certainly couldn't possess.
This game speculates that the statues were, in fact, beam weapons created by two very powerful wizards. These wizards used the statues in a giant game, with the island itself as the board. You are now one of those wizards...
Easter Island lets you place your statues and move them into position. Then, when everything is ready, call upon the power of the Sun to topple your opponent's statues and thus your opponent.
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The real Easter Island, is best know for the giant stone monoliths, known as Moai, that surround the island.. Easter Island has long been the subject of curiosity and speculation. How and why did its inhabitants carve and transport these massive statues. "Easter Island", the game, provides it's own interpretation of how and why it all came to be, in a battle to destroy your opponent's statues.
This game speculates that the statues were in fact beam weapons, created by two powerful wizards and that these wizards used the statues in a giant game, with the island itself as the board.
To destroy your opponent's statues while protecting your own.
1) Quad Folding Game Board, with a grid of 25 points at it's center and 20 Sun Token circles that surround the entire grid. Don't think it's an actual map of Easter Island but it certainly serves the purpose.
14) Statues - 7 colored black and 7 colored grey. Note that these are mini little replicas of the actual statues found on Easter Island and are quite attractive and really add to the theme of the game.
16) Sun Tokens - Each player gets 8 Sun Tokens in their color and each has a picture of the sun on the other side. These are small round cardboard pieces.
Each player chooses a color and takes all the statues and tokens of that color. Players then alternate placing a statue on one of the intersecting points of the center grid, until each players have four statues on the board.
On the starting players very first turn, they choose 1 of five possible actions. On all other turns, each player can then choose any 2 of the same five actions, including repeating the same action twice.
There are only 2 restrictions of the use of the Sun Tokens.
EFFECTS OF THE SUN RAY:
Like a pinball machine, sun rays once activated (by turning them sun side up) shoot a an invisible ray of light in a straight line that can bounce around the board. The statues themselves serve as targets or bumpers, that send the light in different directions. There are a total of four sides where a Statue can be hit . From the front, (face side), back, or either one of the two sides of it's face. Depending upon where the ray of light hits the statue, the statue will either be destroyed (yours or your opponent's) or it will send the light off in a different direction. Any statue hit in the front or back is automatically destroyed and removed from the game. When it's hit from either side, the ray of light is sent off once again at a 90 degree angle.
Statues are also destroyed under the following 2 circumstances.
END OF GAME:
The game ends when one player has only 1 Statue remaining on the board. Even if the player has more Statues that can still be brought into play, the same is still over. The player with 2 or more Statues still on the board wins. It's noted in the rules that in very rare cases, no more rays can be sent, in which case the player with the most Statues on the board wins. If both players have the same amount of Statues left, than the last player to have placed a Statue on the board wins.
THOUGHTS ON THE GAME:
Make no mistake about it, this is a game that involves pure skill. In spite of the Easter Island board and pretty pieces, this is an abstract strategy game all the way. Will you enjoy it? That depends. If you enjoy games that require looking ahead quite a bit, or if your the type of player that enjoys the battle of maneuvering of pieces, as in chess, then this will be what you've been waiting for. It's not chess, but I think the comparison is well taken. It's all definitely unique, interesting and fun.
When I first spotted Easter Island for sale at DragonCon, I was intrigued, but not enough to immediately purchase the game. The saleswoman's description was interesting, but made the game seem too dry and perhaps a little dull, but now I understand how difficult it can be to describe just how intensely interesting this game is!
Before you begin playing the game, make sure you read the rules all the way though; the rules aren't long and they're clearly written, and just reading them through once will make your first play-through of the game go much more smoothly than it would otherwise.
Easter Island is an intellectual strategy game that takes the essence of complex, long-running games like Chess and Go and reduces it down to a game that is just as fun, but easier and quicker to play. If you like games like Othello, Chess, and Go, you will probably like Easter Island.
The look of the game is another great feature. The Moai playing pieces are quirky and unique, like the game's concept, and the playing board and solar tokens are of good quality (and easily saved from water and soda spills).
Overall, I highly recommend this game for its unique style of play and its unique look. However, if you are not fond of strategy games like the ones I mentioned before, Easter Island is probably not for you.