Allow me to go into one of my specialties: Board Games. Ask anyone, I own WAY too many board games; some good, some bad, some strange, but mostly all totally nerdy. Today I’m going to talk to you about a powerhouse nerd game that’s inspired by an amazing sci fi show.
If you’re a fan of the show, you really owe it to yourself to get your hands on this game and play the frak out of it. It’s designed to be played with 3-6 people, and it’s played best with a full house. It’s not a short game by any means, as it can take several hours to complete a full session, but each time I’ve played it, my friends and I never complained. What’s particularly amazing about this game, is how it feels so true to the show. The game relies entirely on deception and co-operation, and when you put those two together you have the makings of one of the most drama filled games you’ll ever play.
If you’re familiar with the show (and if you’re not, go watch them on netflix streaming) you’ll know that the major focal point is that the last survivors of humanity are on the run from the robotic Cylons who have all but eradicated the colonies of man. The Galactica is the last Battlestar and thus the only protector to a fleet of the last remaining humans looking for a new home. All the while, the Cylons are always just behind them, eager to eliminate every last human from existence. Their secret weapon? Cylons that look and feel human, who have infiltrated the fleet in order to destroy humanity from the inside out.
The game really plays on the atmosphere of hopelessness and paranoia. Each player takes the role of one of the major characters from the show, from Laura Roslyn, William Adama, Kara “Starbuck” Thrace, to Gaius Baltar and Sharon “Boomer” Vallerie among others. Each character has their own strengths and weaknesses, and each plays a vital role in the group. The game is played cooperatively, with everyone playing on the same team of humans against the game itself. With every passing turn, the danger of another Cylon attack continues to grow, and the game is very rarely forgiving. The main mechanic of the game is that every turn, a crisis card is turned over that all the players must pool their talents together to overcome. Each player contributes talent cards hoping to meet a certain goal total to overcome each crisis, but there is one catch. One or two of the players, from the beginning, is actually a Cylon in disguise. This inclusion of a traitor mechanic is what really makes this game interesting, as the Cylon players do their best to hide their identity among the other players, gaining their trust while serving their own secret agenda. They secretly play cards that work against the other players contributions, and it takes logic and skillful accusation to weed out the Cylons. It doesn’t take long for paranoia to set in, especially when the players who hold the most power (The Admiral, The president) start acting suspicious. The drama begins and players stop trusting each other, but all the while the game continues to throw bad guy after bad guy and crisis after crisis after them.
The game ends when the players can successfully “jump” the Galactica a certain number of times before reaching Kobol (The main game covers season 1 and some of 2. The Pegasus Expansion and the Exodus Expansion cover the rest of the series). However, the Galactica must have at least one of each of the four resources (food, fuel, population, morale) still intact. If at any time any one of these resources hits zero, it’s game over for the humans and the game, as well as the Cylon players, win. This is particularly difficult towards the late game, as every crisis card results in the loss of these resources, andwhat at first seems like a plentiful amount, can quickly dwindle to 1 or 2.
I’m hoping to get in another round of Battlestar with the Nerds here, but you guys out there should visit your local game store and see if you can find a copy of your own.
SO SAY WE ALL!
One of our game nights with the Pegasus Expansion. 2 Basestars, 7 Raiders, and only 2 Vipers. Those resource dials are all in the Red. I’m pretty sure the humans were not victorious.