AKA: Risk Express
Your Price: $28.95
(Worth 2,895 Funagain Points!)
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Conquer the world in just 20 minutes!
Pick a land disk and roll the dice. If you can fill one of the lines with matching dice, place them. If you can't, set aside a die as lost. Continue rolling. If you fill the card, you get it. If you run out of dice, your turn ends.
As a big fan of classic games, the Express line of games have been something that I have avidly sought out since I first saw Monopoly Express on a store shelf. Unfortunately there was one that proved more elusive since it wasn't published in the US. But thanks to the extreme generosity of a friend, I was given a copy that I could play. So, for those out there wondering about this missing link of the Express line of games, here's the details.
What do you get with Risk Express?
In the game-pod you receive a set of rules, 14 land region discs, and 7 special dice (Three sides with soldiers, one side with a General, one side with a cavalry, and one side with a cannon.)
How does Risk Express work?
At the beginning of the game all the land discs are randomly arranged in the center of the table. Players take turns in normal clockwise fashion.
On a player's turn they roll all 7 dice and then place matching dice to fill a single row of symbols on one of the land discs. Then they roll the remaining dice. If they get a result that allows them to fill more rows on the same disc they can claim only one more row. If they fail to get the proper dice to fill a row, they must lose one die and roll again. The player continues until they have filled all the rows on the disc, thereby conquering it, or until they have lost so many dice that it becomes impossible to conquer the disc.
Conquered land discs go in front of the player. But on subsequent turns other players can try to take those land discs from that player by conquering in the same way. The only difference is that there is an additional row with one General that must also be filled in order to steal the disc.
If a player is able to conquer all of the land discs of one continent/color they flip those discs facedown and lock them in, making them impossible to steal. The game ends when all the land discs have been claimed from the center of the table. Players score the points pictured on the discs they have in front of them. Each color has a special score on the back of one disc that is claimed instead of the individual disc scores if a player has defeated the entire continent. High score wins.
What does Blott think of Risk Express?
This is one of those games that my group really enjoys. There seems to be an inordinate amount of trash-talk around the game, and people will actually go out of their way to take discs from other players even if it's not in their best interest. I really enjoy this aspect because it reminds me of those big Risk games I used to play. And, of course, this game gives me that feel without the multiple hour time commitment.
Who will enjoy Risk Express?
I think that people who are fans of Risk will find that this game scratches a similar itch. It is a nice light game that will please people who don't mind luck-driven dice-fests. However, some gamers will find the game too luck-based. On each turn the number of meaningful decisions are very limited. Once you've decided which region to attack, it can almost feel like a round of Yahtzee, but you can't even change what you're going after. So the same luck-based elements that may entertain some people, may annoy others.
Any parting comments about Risk Express?
I only have one of the Express games that I haven't tried yet, but up to now Risk is definitely my favorite of the group. Despite the high luck- factor in the game, and the limited decision tree, I just find myself having fun playing the game. It delivers what I'm looking for: a world domination, back-stabbing, cut-throat game of Risk in the time it takes to play 2 turns of the original game. So, it may not be a classic that is worth the high price of international shipping, but it is definitely worth it if you can find a bargain.