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Formula Motor Racing
List Price: $20.00
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from 31 customer reviews
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Gentlemen (and ladies), start your engines! Overtake the polesitter. Take advantage of cars on the wrong line. Push your equipment to the limit with a hard charge, risking engine or gear failure. Outduel the other crews in the pits. Avoid race-ending crashes and costly spins. Stay in the slipstream as you stalk the leaders. Score points for finishing positions. Shuffle the cards and do it again. Can you accumulate the most points over the course of the racing season?
Formula Motor Racing is a fast-paced card game in which each player maneuvers a two-car team in search of the Constructors' Championship. You control the fate of your cars and those of your opponents through the timely play of cards. The player whose team scores the most points over a series of races wins the championship.
Each race takes 20 minutes or less to complete. Play just a few races for a quick game, or simulate an entire season, including the Driver's Championship and variable race lengths. You decide how many races will constitute the season at the start of play to fit the playing time you have available.
The Formula Motor Racing action cards are used to change the relative position of the cars in the race. Some cards are played to help your own team, others hurt your opponents, and some benefit several teams at once. In this manner, your card play fosters racing rivalries, as well as tacit alliances of opportunity.
You can play it safe, trying to preserve your car to the end of the race, or you can take a chance, playing a risky card that could backfire. Don't worry if you slip toward the back of the pack. You can find a drafting opportunity to help you overtake the leaders. You don't have to win every race, or even any of them-but you have to keep your cars steadily "in the points" (the top six positions) to stay in the championship hunt.
Formula Motor Racing is the quickest-playing auto racing game in existence. It has very few rules to master and is easy to teach. For 3 to 6 players of ages 8 and up.
Rodger B MacGowan
Players: 3 - 6
Time: 20 minutes
Ages: 8 and up
Weight: 317 grams
Language Requirements: This is an international edition or domestic edition of an imported item. Game components are printed in English. Manufacturer's rules are printed in English.
- 12 Plastic cars (two each in six colors)
- 6 Team pit crew cards (one in each of the six colors)
- 54 Action cards
- 1 12-sided die
- 1 Rulebook
Average Rating: 3.8 in 31 reviews
I really enjoyed this game. You must play cards in order to move cars ahead, fall behind, or even take cars out of the race. What I realy like about this game is that you can draw and play cards that affect other people too. You can form alliances, but sometimes that can be dangerous because those alliances can turn on you. What I did not like about this game is that there are not enough cards that can take cars out of the race.
This could be a filler game.
This could be a family game.
This game can be taught in five minutes, yet you'll have hours of fun playing it.
The better part is that it does not require reading a lot of rules on the card to play this card game, which is good for non-English-speaking players.
Final warning: the game is addictive. What starts at a filler game turns out to be played for the whole evening.
I've played this game with all ages and sorts of gamers. Everyone has enjoyed it for what it is, a quick-playing racing game to fill in those times when you don't want to or can't set up [page scan/se=0217/sf=category/fi=stockall.asc/ml=20]Formula De or some other game.
So far, I have to say that this game is an exceptional filler game.
This is a great little game of auto racing, with cards as the major randomizing component. Formula Racing is much more abstract than, say, Formula De, but plays in less than half the time of a short game of Formula De. Game play is fast, furious and very competitive--the games are so short, you don't get too hung up over concepts like winning and losing and instead concentrate on the fun.
Most important for me is the ability to prosletyze... you can usually get at least 3-4 people somewhere interested in playing Formula Racing--if you need to kill a little time between convention events, or do something unique with the in-laws, this is the game to break out. My wife learned Formula Racing in about 10 minutes, and now regularly trounces me. My 6 year old daughter is learning it as well (though she's borderline...).
Knizia's genius is such that this simple game, with as much laughter as a drunken Pit match, is a game of subtle strategy. You must keep count of the points possible by all players in the present race as well as those in past races. You may win the battle yet allow someone else to win the war unless you play the game shrewdly. Those who played a few rounds and thought it was all luck are the same people who lose at poker, gin rummy and backgammon and complain that they aren't games of skill. I'm not saying this is Contract Bridge--but it is a lot of fun and has plenty of skill to keep a gamer interested and enough luck to keep the non-gamer involved. GMT has done a top rate job at production.
This game is a riot.
I got to play this game with my wife and 2 other couples after dinner on Easter Sunday and it really fit the bill. The concept and rules were easily explained in a few minutes and everyone could immediately appreciate the depth of decisions they had to make without being life-long gamers.
The game isn't really about each race, but really how well you do over a series of races. Therefore the choices you have to make with the two cars you run each race are tough. Do you keep promoting only your best car, or do you try to get both of them high enough to score points? Do you risk using an all-or-nothing card on yourself, or is it better to play it on an opponent and hope to knock them out of the race? These are the kind of questions you are up against.
The biggest endorsement for this game was how much cheering and laughter I witnessed around the dinner table that day. Afterwards the participants thanked me for breaking out such a fun diversion.
My wife, two children and I can play this together in a short enough time that even the 5 year old enjoys it. The rules are simple to learn, even for a 5 year old, although strategy is best left to those actually over 8. The turns go quickly and no one gets bored waiting for someone to decide what to do. Absolutely perfect for us and our kids.
On the down side, the rules are simple because they are simplistic. This is a family game based on motor racing, not a Nascar simulation. I use my PC for that. While an excellent game for getting the family together, it is not very challenging and some adults may grow tired of it.
I bought FMR for one reason: I visited a local game store a couple weeks ago and a bunch of guys were sitting in the back playing it. They were loud, they were laughing--in short they were all having a blast. I heard one guy say 'This is a GREAT game. Someone must be seriously twisted to make a game this much fun'. What sold me wasn't just his comment, it was the fact that they had other racing games set aside so they could play FMR.
Well, now I have FMR myself and I have played it many times with my family and I have to agree that this is serious fun. The more races you are able to play the better as your scores for the series (racing season) determine the winner. This tends to balance the effects of luck because it's only someone who can do well overall who is going to win the season, not someone with a flash in the pan victory or two.
Don't get me wrong, this is not a detailed simulation of racing by any means, but this is a an extremely enjoyable game for anyone looking for a night a fun with family and friends.
OK, the box says ages 8 and up and the game plays in 20 minutes--sounds like kid stuff, right? WRONG!
Formula Motor Racing (FMR) by GMT and Reiner Knizia is a game of surprising depth considering its ease of play. For up to six players, each team (player) gets two cars of the same colour. The unplayed (neutral) teams stay in the race so there are always 12 cars in the race (until they expire due to spin outs, engine blows, or the dreaded Crash!card).
The cars are seeded at the beginning of the race with the first player getting the 1st and 12th position, the second player 2nd and 11th etc... Each player has a hand of 5 cards. The cards are mainly ones which allow a car of a certain colour to move forward 2 to 4 'relative' positions, however (and this is the neat part), the car behind the car which is moved also moves forward in the moving cars slipstream.
The remainder of the cards cover such things as pit stops, spins, double edged 'Charge!' cards (move forward 75% of the time or blow your engine and get eliminated or go to last place) and the Crash card which randomly eliminates 1 car and the car of your choice either ahead or behind it.
Played FMR with 5 players, all adult Eurogamers. We played a series of 5 races and kept track of points as suggested. There was plenty of strategy as the cumulative leaders were ganged up on to keep things even. Two players tied with 28 points after 5 races with the 5th place cumulative being 17 points.
The 'random' cards which require rolling a 12-sided dice are really 'calculated risk' cards. It's YOUR CHOICE to take that risk rather than play a 'sure thing' card. Nobody forces you to make 'risky' plays, but if you want to win big you probably have to take some chances. Makes the game exciting.
A wonderful game. Highly recommended!
I like racing games, especially Formula De. However, one problem I have with Formula De is that it takes a good bit of time, especially if the race is more than one lap. Then I heard about Formula Motor Racing, which claimed to be the quickest-playing auto racing game in existence. I was intrigued, and even more so when I saw that the designer was the great Reiner Knizia (Modern Art, Lost Cities), and that the company who made the game (2001) was GMT games, who are usually known for their war games. (Paths of Glory, etc.)
So was Formula Motor Racing the ultimate short racing game? The response is that while not exactly an accurate racing simulation (or even close) Formula Motor Racing is an extremely fun card game that everyone will enjoy. Quite easy to learn, with a lot of hit your neighbor fun, its one that folk of all ages would like.
An explanation of game play follows:
Each player (three to six) picks one of six colors and takes two small plastic cars of that color. A deck of fifty-four cards is shuffled and placed in the middle of the table, along with a twelve-sided die. One player takes six pit crew cards and shuffles them. These cards are then drawn to determine initial car placement. The first color drawn has its cars put in first and twelfth place, the second in second and eleventh place, etc. Even if no one is playing that color, the cars are still placed on the table, because its possible, although unlikely, that a neutral car could win the game. Each player is dealt five cards, and the game begins. The player who controls the car in pole position goes first, with each player going clockwise.
On their turn, a player plays a card, then draws a card. They must complete both actions. The action cards have various effects.
- Overtake cards are the most common. They are of three types: +2, +3, and +4. Each overtake card is color coded, and can only be used on a car of that color. The indicated car and the car directly behind it move the amount of spaces up in the line, with the rest of the cars adjusted accordingly. Cars cannot move beyond 1st or 12th place.
- Wrong line cards move any car back one space.
- Off Circuit cards move any car back two spaces
- Lose Control cards move any car back three spaces
- When playing a Pit Stop card, the player selects one car (of the matching color, or any color if the card is black) and rolls the die. On a 1-6, the chosen car moves that many spaces backwards in the line, while 7-12 does nothing.
- Tailender Turbo cards move one of the last three cars in the race forward three places.
- Charge (Lose Gears) cards can affect a car of any color. The die is rolled. On a 1-9, the car moves forward one. On a 10-12, the car goes to last place. If the car is the same color as the current player, they may roll again, and continue moving until they wish to stop, or until the car goes to last place.
- Charge (Engine Blows) cards are the same as Lose Gears, but the penalty for a 10-12 is that the car is out of the race!
- When a Spin Out card is played, the player rolls the die. The car in that position must move to last place. The player may re-roll the die once, if they choose, but must accept the re-roll.
- The Spin Last card is the same as Spin Out, except the car is out of the race.
- The player playing the Crash card rolls the die. The car in the position rolled is out of the race, as well as the car before or behind it (players choice).
When the last card is drawn, the race is almost over. Each player plays one last card, and then points are scored. Only the first six cars score points for their owners (10,6,4,3,2,1). Several races can be raced, with points totaled from the races. The player with the most points after a predetermined amount of races wins the game!
Some comments on the game:
1.) Components: The cards are of very good quality, and are nice and bright, and easy to distinguish. Color-blind players may have some trouble telling the cards and cars apart, as the only thing differentiating them is their color. The cards have nice diagrams and text, explaining what the function of the car it. The cars themselves are nice little plastic models (I may use them in other games), and the die is a very good quality 12 sided die. The box is a good, sharp looking small box that has a plastic insert, holding everything well, and comes with a small plastic bag for the race cars. Some score sheets also come with the game to keep track of each cars points. For the price, the game components are top notch.
2.) Rules: The rules are printed on seven pages. They certainly dont need to be that long, but its nice to see a description of each card and a detailed statement of how that card works. There is also a score sheet on the back of the booklet that can be photocopied when a player runs out of score sheets. The game is very easy to teach, and once the players learn what each card does, runs very smoothly.
3.) Grandiose strategy: It isnt here. Formula Motor Racing isnt the most strategic of games every played. Rather, it feels like Battle Cattle or Guillotine, as each player plays cards that help them and/or hurt others. Of course, one can maximize their car position, but with luck of the draw, and powerful cards, cars can go from last to first quickly, and vice versa.
4.) Fun Factor: But it doesnt matter too much, because the game is a lot of fun! Its fun to move your car up, and others back. I really enjoy the Charge cards, where I try to move my car up in line as far as possible (even though I never succeed). The game is a blast, and even though the cards and die add quite a bit of randomness, it isnt a big deal, as long as all players are in a proper frame of mind.
5.) Theme: Well, its not Formula De, or any other racing game. The theme, while existent, is only barely so. But with proper players (I mean the ones who like to have fun), the theme can be felt, and everybody can feel as if they are jockeying for position in a high speed race. The crash cards especially add to the flavor.
I think this is a game that should be added to many collections. Its very inexpensive, with good quality components. Its fun and easy to learn and play, and only takes a short time (fifteen minutes a race). Its a fantastic game for both children and adults, and can provide a lot of laughter and shouting. GMT may be known for their war games, but Ill always be thankful they made this little gem.
The reviews above and below cover the basics of the game. It really is a fun game. The theme does get a bit old after a few races. This is a nice game to play at the beginning or end of the evening. It won't keep your interest the whole night. But for racing fans it is a MUST.
It would be even more fun if GMT got a license for NASCAR or even CART or the IRL. NASCAR fans would love this game if they could play w/ teams composed of their favorite drivers. There could be expansion packs w/ new teams each year to reflect changes and folks could buy their favorite teams as well. Finally a practical use for all those 1/64 die-cast NASCAR replicas that your Uncle Jack collects.
Just played five games with my wife, using Bill Campbell's two-player variant (Boardgame Geek). Each player's second color is selected randomly and in secret. This creates uncertainty and adds suspense. I was surprised how great this game plays with two, despite three as the stated minimum. With two the games go very fast. The rules are simple and stated on the cards. One glance at the rulebook is all that's necessary.
First of all I would like to plead to everyone to stop giving this game 5 stars.A rating like that should be reserved for games like Settlers of Catan ,Formula De or Cartagena.
That being said ,this is a terific game that can be explained and played within about half an hour.About the amount of time it would take one of your friends to read the rules for the game you really got together to play.
This is a great game for all ages.You can try to take it easy on the younger players while trying to screw over the older ones.
Don't expect to play this game for 2 hours straight,but if you need something to play between Settlers and Medici this game will do the trick.
This is a quaint little game that is ideal as a filler at gaming sessions, or rainy days, or a few minutes with the family. Normally, I might rate it a 3-star on strategy and skill; the rules are very simple, easily grasped for a quick start-up by new players; there is a substantial 'luck of the draw' factor. But if there is one prominent characteristic of Formula Motor Racing, it is that it generates a lot of fun and laughter amongst the players. This game is a genuine crowd-pleaser with our group, and gets repeated playings.
I give this game 4 stars within the framework of similar multi-player games. Like Ivanhoe, Witch Trial, Galaxy, Manhattan, King Of The Elves, etc. It is easy to play, has enough depth to hold your interest without brain damage, and simulates a race pretty well for a quick little game.
Three of us played it and the games were close in points. It filled in nicely between games of Taj Mahal and Carcassonne. Skeptical that it could be much fun or hold my interest, FMR proved a winner after several playings.
Don't think this is a detailed, in-depth game of racing. It is not, but does not claim to be. It is however, fun, quick to play, and has subtle startegies enough to make me want to play again.
This race game is all about chaos management. Card play is fast and furious. Positioning within a 12-car 'stack' is relative and not absolute. The only distance that matters is what separates you from that flag position. When your turn comes, you have a simple choice: Do I improve my own position thereby making myself a visible target? Or do I attempt to interfere with someone else's car, which may coincidentally improve my own position?
One nice trait is the slipstream effect: while you may not have any card to improve your own position, you may actually improve another car's position and, provided your car is the one tailing it, it gets pulled behind the 'lead car' and both cars move up the food chain.
While the player who has the 'hammer' (e.g., plays the last card) has an inherent advantage in a single race because that move cannot be countered, over the course of a series of races this advantage is reduced to a manageable proportion. For example, finishing first in race #1 forces you to go first in race #2, meaning that all other players will be in a position to interfere with your cars after you've have had your last card play. You should never look forward to back-to-back wins in this game.
Most of the really nasty cards (e.g., blow a gear and you're out of the race) require a random die roll to implement. Thus, while they can be nasty in the extreme they are no sure thing. Players are left to ponder whether it would be better to improve one's position or to try and 'gun' for the lead car.
Tense, fast, and fun: it's a winner in our circle. Those looking for a race simulation please look elsewhere. Those who are looking for organized chaos, this one's for you!
It is fun and fast to play. I got my colleagues at work (investment bank) to play it and ask for it again and again. Unlike many other Euro games, it does not apply a veneer of Formula racing to another rummy or bidding game. This is not to say that the system accurately simulates Formula racing, but neither does Formula De.
I think the luck factor is to be expected in a card game, and it actually mitigates the risk that the last person to play wins because you're not always getting cards that help you so directly. I can't recall in the dozen games I've played that the last player got to win.
I should mention that after playing a few games following Mr. Knizia's rules, I have adopted a variant which reduces the luck factor and allows for more planning and strategy, which is (1) to distribute all the cards upfront (8 each in a 6-player game, 10 each in a 5-player game, 12 each in a 4-player game) and (2) to play until all cards have been used. With such a house variant, I would give the game a '5 stars' rating.
Every game I've played has been tense with suspense. Even though the luck of the draw affects your chances quite a bit, you can still make mistakes or good plays. To some extent, I see each gaming session as a good story unfolding one card play at the time.
Formula Motor Racing is a very good game for those times when you have 30 minutes or so at the beginning of a game session when you're waiting for everyone to show up or at the end of the night when you want to play one more game but it can't be too long. Each race takes 15 minutes or so to play and the number of races in a campaign is up to the players so choose your number and start your engines. The rules are quickly learned by just diving in and referring to the rules page when the mostly self-explanatory cards need clarification. This game has a lot of opportunity for clever strategy moves without being too complicated. A very nice game to bring along when not everyone is a die-hard gamer.
I am normally not a big fan of Eurogames (just see my postings on Consimworld), but I like this one. It is a good, solid quick play game. The strategy level is acceptable, and the short game length allows multiple playings in a sitting. The mechanics are simple enough to make strategy rather than rules lawyering the focus of the game, but not (as in many Eurogames) so simple as to make the game dumb.
I was sceptical, at best, when GMT entered the Euro game market, but the results have proven me wrong. Formula Motor Racing is a fast playing fun game but it does not lack for either strategy or risk taking.
Players choose cars, then randomly decide the starting positions. No track needed, just line up the cars on the table. Each player is dealt five cards and play begins with the car in the pole position. Cards allow players to advance postions while the car behind them 'drafts' with them (a good way to use cards for cars other than your own), change gears and advance one position at the risk of blowing an engine or slipping gears and dropping to last.
A light, quick game that can be played and enjoyed by all ages. Not truly an auto racing game, but more of an abstract card game that uses an auto racing theme (very effectively). A great family game that, if played cleverly and with wit, can easily be enjoyed by veteran gamers looking for something quick and fun. Like all of the simpler Euro games, this one is most fun if you don't over analyze the strategy and just relax and have fun. Definitely worth the price!
I bought this game to play with friends and family after dinner and at the pool. And for that it is excellent. The game can be played by various skill levels, and it generally takes me about 5 minutes to explain the rules.
And my kid gets a kick whenever the spin out card wipes out her dad!
This is a game that is lumped into the category of 'filler' in our group, mainly because of the time involved in setup and gameplay (15-20 per game). I can't imagine playing this game for an entire game session, unless the session was only 1/2-hour to an hour long (lunch time!).
The mechanics (cards, no track) play a lot like the Stock Car Championship Card Game.
This is a nice, quick-playing game, but I prefer Formula De if I want a 'real' racing game.
Let's be real, these games are rated on a relative scale. A 5 star game is an awesome game, mabe 5-10% of games deserve this. To hand out 5 star ratings like candy cheapens and invalidates the rating system.
Formula racing is fun and an ok game, but it ain't great. You may play a few hands the first time you play this, but it's essentially a filler game--you wouldn't want to play this a lot. It plays fast, so playing 3-4 games may take 30-40 minutes. But would you want to play more than that. After a couple of such sessions you would be looking for something else.
The game isn't bad, but its nowhere near a 5 star game.
GMT's version of the Reiner Knizia motor racing game is basically unchanged from the Gibson's edition. Better box (obviously), rules ambiguities excised and pit stop cards in case you forget who is playing with which colour.
Game play is simplicity itself. Each player has a team of two cars, and all 12 cars are arranged in order 1st to last to keep track of the relative positions.
Out of a hand of 5 cards, play one to effect the relative positions of the cars, then draw a replacement. When the draw deck is exhausted, everbody has one more card play, before scoring points according to the final positions. The Formula One system is used, awarding 10-6-4-3-2-1 points to the first 6 finishers. The Move Up cards advance a car of the designated color 2-4 places, pulling the trailing car with it. Other cards may move cars back, or knock them out of the race entirely. It is possible to knock your own cars out, so be careful.
While it's true that the player going last can have the last word, this is self-balancing over several races, as the winning player in one race will go first in the next. Having said that, any move-up cards of your own colour are your most valuable assets and one should be conserved for the last turn if at all possible.
This is not a terribly deep game, but will keep 3-6 people amused for 30 minutes or so.
The game is fair--I played my friend's copy but wouldn't buy it myself. Nice graphics though.
It has some clever mechanisms--but as a game, it's only average. There are better racing games out there if that's what interests you.
A cautionary note: The publisher has asked people to rate this game. He didn't come out and say they should inflate their ratings, but keep an eye out for inflated ratings or super positive reviews.
This game isn't bad, but its not great either. Knizia has made better games.
Formula Motor Racing is a fun, light-weight card-game that doesnt require lots of brain power and can be played in just about the same time that it takes to read the 4 page rules. The game claims to be 'The quickest playing auto racing game in existance' and it probably is, unless you just want to pick numbers out of hat. A single race can be run in under 20 minutes, perfect for the lunch time crowd or as a quick late-night filler.
The game isnt a full blown racing simulation; its more just a representation of how cars shift and sway as they jockey for position. There is no race track; instead, plastic cars are used to maintain your position in the race. As for realistic auto-racing decisions, there arent any; there are no pits stops to make, no pit crews to train, no qualifying to be done, no hairpin turns to handle, no oil slicks to navigate, no gears to grind, no brakes to hit, and no fuel to burn. All of those things have been abstracted into a set of cards which you randomly draw into your hand. Since the cards are random, you dont feel as if you have any deep control over what your driver does. I'm sure this has some truth in it, but the odd thing is, sometimes you can actually control what the OTHER cars do. Weird.
In general, strategy isnt very complex; get into first and try to stay there; slow down the other guys when you can. It just boils down to the cards you hold. I'd rather play a game like Formula De which has more of a 'racing' feel to it and a greater sense of control. Still, FMR is fun and cheap, and in this respect it finishes in first place. But if you want something more realistic and more challenging, then FMR is just 'crash and burn'.
Play someone else's copy. After a couple of gaming sessions you'll lose interest. The game is ok--it doesn't suck, but there are a lot more better games out there. Even as a filler game, it's not great. The theme and cards are cute, but after playing a few times, it loses its charm.
Let's face it, a lot of games sell because their components are excellent. Formula Motor Racing is attractive, but it's nothing special as a game. It was fun for a couple of races, but I have no interest in playing it again. Its an ok filler game, but there are better. So why settle?
Dr. Knizia has a tremendous reputation and has designed some gems like T&E. But he's also designed a ton of mediocre small games, and yet his reputation never suffers. Some of his games are luck prone, and not filled with all that interesting decisions. Or are too contrived.
This is a light weight filler game, nothing more. It's ok to play once or twice, as long as it's someone else's copy.
For all those people who rated this a 5: are you kidding? There are so many truly excellent games out there that to rate this a 5 is just rating inflation.
Don't be fooled by a high rating on this one; its just fair.
Formula Motor Racing is a card-based racing game. Gameplay consists of ordering 12 cars in 6 different colors in one row. Each player takes one color with the remaining color(s) being neutral. Players then play cards that will effect that race order. When the draw deck runs out, players get one last play and the game ends with a dramaless whimper.
Any racing game that doesn't use a track lends itself to some inherent problems, the biggest one being how to make the early to late gameplay relevant. Formula Motor Racing never overcomes this fatal error. The next issue is how to keep the players who go last from winning, and once again Formula Motor Racing fails. In all the races we ran, the last or second-to-last player won. Finally, the card play is pretty uninteresting, with very little control and thus no real fun.
So if you're looking for a quick card-based auto racing game that's fun for gamers (young and old) & non-gamers alike, then play Detroit-Cleveland Grand Prix.
Plastic racing cars in six colors (two in your color) form a line of randomly determined places, from 1st to 12th. Cards discarded from hands change positions. Most move a specified color forward or backward. Risky cards require the roll of a 12-sided die. How often do you dare try to roll for 1-9 to crawl forward? Roll 10-12 and you're in last place, or eliminated. Roll to determine which car crashes, and if yours is in front of or behind it, you'll crash too. Finishing in 1st to 6th places when cards are depleted earns points. The player with the most points after an agreed-upon number of races wins. It's thrilling enough to make your heart race.