May 6, 2009

Space Alert Board Game Preps for Launch

Fans of cooperative board games, in the strain of Pandemic, Battlestar Galatica and Shadows Over Camelot, have a new franchise to look forward to, and a very unique one at that. Space Alert [Amazon, Funagain] puts players in control of a space ship under a crazy string of disasters, and the players must survive the gamut in order to succeed. So far, sounds like Battlestar Galactica, right?

Well there are a considerable amount of difference. First off, trim the game down from 1-2 hours to about 10-30 minutes. Reluctantly, also remove the idea of a traitor character. There's no time for it anyway, because the game is not only about dealing with crises, but dealing with them fast. That's because the enitre pace of the game is driven by a CD soundtrack which tells you when crap hits the fan.

Yeah, pretty crazy. Each track of the CD has unique pacing and cadence, with its own timing of crises. And when one hits, the CD will tell your group which crisis deck to draw from. The combination of multiple tracks and multiple decks randomizes the game for repeat play. And if that's not enough for you then then are people already forming new MP3 audio tracks, splicing samples from the original CD, to keep things interesting over the long run.

With the CD driving the pace of the game, players must decide how to play the cards from their hand and delegate responsibility to quickly deal with each crisis before the next hit. The randomness of the crises, playing with the hand you're delt, cooperating with your friends to get the job done, and being driven by a randomized sound track, have made Space Alert one of the most anticipated cooperative board games for 2009.

And it's slated to ship this month. Joy.

"Space Alert is a team survival game. Players take on the role of a crew of space explorers sent out through hyperspace to survey a dangerous sector of the Galaxy.The spaceship automatically maps the sector in 10 minutes. The crew's task is to defend the ship until the mission is complete. If they succeed, the ship brings back valuable data. If they fail... it is time to train a new crew.

Space Alert is not a typical board game. Players do not compete against each other. Instead, they work together against the challenge presented by the game. The difficulty of this challenge can be chosen by the players themselves. Completing the most difficult missions requires close teamwork."

Space Alert is currently available for preorder from Amazon and Funagain Games. For more information also checkout the Space Alert page on BGG. We'll let you know as soon as it hits shelves this month.

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Posted by Critical Gamers Staff at May 6, 2009 8:46 PM

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