Dog Eat Dog
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Welcome to corporate America business in the 1980s. You play the president of a division of Rinky Dink, Inc., a nefarious, multi-tentacled, multinational megacorp bent on plundering the environment for fun and profit. Your job: tear up the earth gathering raw materials, turn them into products and sell them on the open market for millions. The more money your division makes, the more money you can funnel into your Swiss Bank Account. The more you pollute, the quicker you destroy the environment. Cut down the forests and send the Spotted Owls packing. Dig up the hills and turn the Buffalo into burgers. The first person to embezzle $150 million before the environment is devastated wins! Standing in your way: corrupt congressmen, enraged eco-terrorists, useless unions, unreliable workers, and the relentless IRS. The worst obstacle of all: your fellow players, each the president of a different division of Rinky Dink, Inc.
Players: 3 - 6
Time: 90 minutes
Ages: 12 and up
Weight: 2,008 grams
Average Rating: 3.4 in 5 reviews
This is a really good game, and well balanced. Everyone is in it right until the end. It's not really a 'mess with others' game, more of a 'get what you need to get done before someone else does.' You can mess with the others somewhat, but it's not integral to the game. It comes with about 500,000 (ok, I exaggerate a little) cardboard peices, but they are thick and well made.
This game is a guilty sort of fun, as winning depends on destroying the environment. The rules are tricky, but simple enough when you get the hang of them, and the illustrations are hysterical!
My cousin received this game for his birthday and we all sat down to give it an initiation. To me, the game seems like Settlers of Catan meets 1830 meets Monopoly. There are resources you acquire based on the real estate you own (as in Settlers). There is a board you traverse using dice while paying taxes as you pass a certain square. And finally, to win, you must embezzle money like a robber baron.
The rules are clear, straightforward and well laid out. Any rules question we had we could easily be looked up to our satisfaction. The only slight problem was in getting a handle of what each game phase meant, but that was quickly resolved as time went on. The board design and pieces are well made. Good quality production.
Since we had the full complement of 6 people playing, we could utilize all the divisions included in the game, including 'Waste management Inc.' (This division incorporates a very clever design into the game play.)
Each division extracts resources and makes products for sale on the open market. In the course of manufacting, the natural environment is reduced, until nothing but pollution and waste is left. The trick, as CEO of your division, is to make a killing on the market and embezzle as much money as you can into your Swiss bank account. However, you need to be a good manager of your resources first. You need to know when to extract, when to degrade, and when to sell on the open market. In a sense, a very good economic simulation. The key is knowing how far to go in destroying the environment before it becomes unprofitable.
I think we all completely enjoyed the game, especially since we were all in it 'til the very end. Another good feature. Good play balance, and our scores were all very close at the end.
I look forward to playing it again, and I sense that there are many different strategies still out there to be tried.
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