Magic Maze

Overall Rating: 9/10

Age: 8+

GLAM Age Range: 8-Adult

Number of Players: 1-8

Playing Time: 15 min

Publisher: Dude Games

Complexity: Medium to High

Available At: Amazon.com

 

Quick Take: This game has a thoroughly fresh and novel concept. It's cooperative! But don't talk to each other! (Except at specially designated times). A dwarf, mage, elf, and barbarian have lost their magical objects and must race through a mall (yes, a mall) in order to find these objects, steal them, and get out before they run out of time. It's fun, it's intense, it's different every time you play. It is not your choice if you need a mellow game after a long day but it's a great choice if you want a challenging game in a short amount of time. 

 

How to Play: The basics of the game are to get the heroes to their magical items and out the door before you run out of time. Everyone is given an action card with a set movement or movements (depending on how many people are playing the game) and you are only allowed to move hero tokens in the direction on your action card. So you will have to work together as a team, without any talking, to add new tiles to game play, navigate through them to add still more tiles, and eventually get the heroes to their magical item spots and then navigate them to the exit on time. There is a vortex system where players can warp to remote spots, and sand timer spots where you can flip the timer over for additional game play time. You also get a short chance to talk whenever you land on a sand timer spot. One of our favorite variations in the game is passing your action card tile to the person to your left whenever someone lands on a sand timer spot. It's a lot of fun to switch up the actions and makes you work harder to remember which way you're supposed to be moving the hero tokens. Later on there are opportunities to deal with crystal ball spaces, security cameras, special passages for the dwarf token, and short opportunities to talk whenever a elf explores a new tile. There are 17 scenarios in the original game, between that and the wide range in the number of players with which you can play with, this game can feel very different each time you play. But the basics remain the same: don't talk, get the magical objects, get out! 

Variations: Half of this game is variations. Variations for one player (works surprisingly well!), variations for higher and lower difficulty for the game. I love that it's all in the rules and it's surprisingly quick and easy to try out different scenarios as provided because it builds on what you already know and a quick read through will provide a new challenge so the game remains fresh no matter how many times you play. That said, we generally have at least one child playing with us so our most used variation is to allow speaking during this game. 

 

Similar Games To Check Out: 5 Minute Dungeon, The Mind, Ghost Fightin Treasure Hunters

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