Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Macroscope (Mayday Games)

Party games are wildly popular in the board game hobby, because they play a larger number of people than your standard four player game, are easy to learn and quick to play, and are friendly for gamers and non-gamers alike. It's a big reason that Codenames was a smash hit and won game of the year. Mayday Games recently published what I would consider a party game or filler game called Macroscope. It plays 2-6 people (but I think could play more if you had teams) age 6+. It takes about 30 minutes to play and retails for $30.

Setup
1. Before your first game assemble the Macroscope.
2. Place the Macroscope in the center of the table.
3. Place the deck of cards in it with the pizza card on top.
4. Cover the Macroscope with its lid and place random tokens on each round window of the lid.
5. Remove the pizza card.
6. Place the round tracker next to the Macroscope with the marker on space 1.
7. Place the dice in the center of the table and give each player two yellow crystals. The remaining crystals are placed close by.
Game Play
On your turn, roll both dice. For each die, remove one token with a number that matches the die face. For each die you have without a matching token, remove a token of your choice. After each token is removed, you may either make a guess or opt not to and take a yellow token. If you guess and are correct, you receive yellow crystals for each token left on the macroscope. If someone things you are wrong, they may pay two yellow crystals and guess themselves. If you choose not to guess, another player may guess for the price of two yellow crystals. After a successful guess is made, each other player who didn't guess the picture loses as many crystals as there are tokens on the macroscope. Play passes to the next player and the game lasts 10 rounds. The player with the most points is the winner.
Review
Mayday Games tries to put out family friendly games that are easy on the budget and large on the fun meter. Sometimes they succeed and other times they miss the mark. Macroscope succeeds and hits the ball out of the park. The game plays quickly, is easy to teach, and is just a fun, little party puzzle. I particularly liked building the macroscope from cardboard, and it was a nice little element that makes a statement on the table. They could have easily just given us a sheet of paper with holes in it to cover the cards, but they didn't. Having played this game several times, I haven't made it through half of the large deck of cards. Thankfully they are double-sided so when they run out, I can just flip them over and get a new deck to play with. Like most people though, I am hoping that there will be expansion packs that are just more of these cards. The best part of this game is that I can play it with anybody. From people who game to people who don't, young children to older adults, each one has found this game to be a fun little filler. I highly recommend picking up a copy and use this as a light game to introduce people to the modern world of board games.

This game was provided to me for free by Mayday Games in exchange for an honest review.