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Do you want a successful output, when you play Input? If you do, then you must enter your playing pieces onto the computer-look gameboard cautiously and cleverly.
Entering or "inputting" a piece strategically is so crucial because once a piece is positioned on the board, its movement becomes strictly controlled. In fact, a piece can only be moved to the positions designated by the Movement Pattern it carries on its face.
The Input challenge is to land your coded or "pre-programmed" pieces onto your opponent's pieces to capture them. If you capture all of your opponent's pieces first, you'll win the game. Landing on enemy pieces takes cunning and careful planning, for once a piece is input, its pattern is on view for everyone to see. Revealed Movement Patterns, however, only tell you where a piece can be moved--you must decide what piece to move and when to move it!
Always try to anticipate your opponent's next move and input your pieces accordingly. If you do, you'll be a big Input winner.
Ages: 10 and up
Weight: 585 grams
Average Rating: 3.5 in 2 reviews
In 'Input', once a piece is brought on the board which is a 3 by 4 grid, the piece is programmed to move to specific spaces. This is indicated by a sticker on each piece. When it's your turn, you can bring a piece to the entry area, a piece from an entry area to the board or move a piece. A piece is programmed to move 5 times. Then it can start over. The object of the game is capture all of the opponents 6 pieces to win. Landing on an enemy piece captures it. Playing time is about 20 minutes. The strategy is hard to decide on at first. It is like looking ahead in chess without the complexity. Worth the price.
If you like strategy games like chess or Stratego you will enjoy this game. A typical game lasts around 15 to 25 moves and takes a half-hour. It is an interesting idea with game board and pieces above average in quality and aesthetics (in my opinion). The game pieces are moved about the game board somewhat like robots--each piece is severely restricted by its own special path (program) consisting of a 6 node sequence of moves with no turning back allowed. This causes beginners to easily become overextended and unable to rescue pieces placed in enemy territory (around piece's 3rd node); or he gets one or more pieces all stuck in line behind one another and unable to move to safety. In either case, opponent quickly moves in and picks off the vulnerable pieces one-by-one.
After being behind a piece or two, comeback victories are rare, without much oppurtunity for dazzling sacrifices and such.
I created a decent computer program to spar against and try out various strategies. (finding opponents who know the game is not easy). I would have given the game 3.5 or 4 rating, but the main shortcoming is that as far as I can tell, after getting the hang of the game, it becomes rather predictable. But reaching this point does take some time (about 25+ games in my case). Overall, it's a good game to have on hand just for its innovation and cool looking molded plastic game board and tiles.