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Flicky Spaceships Review

Flicky Spaceships Board Game Review

Flicky Spaceships is a fun, family-oriented dexterity game from designers Matt Green and Sam Mercer and publisher Room 17 Games. It accommodates two to four players and plays in around 30 to 60 minutes.

The aim of the game is to have the most victory points at the end, which you gain from buying upgrades. You get the resources to buy the upgrades by physically flicking your spaceship around the board. The concept alone is an interesting take on a resource management game that should draw a lot of people in.

Playing Flicky Spaceships

Flicky Spaceships takes place on a modular board, which is a hexagon made up of three large triangles, all of which contain a number of smaller hexes. The board is also edged by foam and has a plastic 'wormhole' in the middle. Each triangle has an A side and a B side, with A being easier and B being harder. You can mix and match them as you like to make the game easier or harder, which is a nice touch to accommodate kids of different ages and abilities. And I have to say, playing with all hard sides is tricky for adults, too!

When it's set-up, the board will contain a range of blank space spots and resource spots, which all correspond to one of the five resource colours. To start the game, players take it in turns to put their ship on the plastic wormhole and flick it in whatever direction they want. The game is very clear that there are no rules as to what constitutes a flick, so players are free to make up their own techniques.

Once that first flick has been taken, game turns proceed in a simple set of steps: collect the resource matching the colour hex you're on (you're considered to be in whatever spot the front of your ship is in); flick your ship; buy upgrades with resources.

There are 12 different upgrade cards in the game, in three different colours. When a player buys one, they place it in front of them and gain its specific bonus, which could be something like a victory point every time you hit another ship or the ability to take a resource from the space in front of the one you're in.

The game ends when a certain number of card types have gone (you need to remove more in a higher player game). There are only two each of most cards and only one of the rest, so it doesn't take long to remove a card type from the game. Players then add up the points they've collected and the points on their upgrade cards. The player with the highest wins!

My thoughts on Flicky Spaceships

This game is a perfect family game. The main mechanic of flicking the spaceships is easy for any player to grasp, no matter how old they are, and it's a fundamentally satisfying action to take. I never got tired of flicking my spaceship across the board and attempting to smash into other players or putting my dexterity to the test and going for a little nudge just three spaces over.

You can try and be strategic with your flicks, or you can just whack the ship and see what happens. While the game definitely rewards strategic play, the strategy is not so deep that you can't have fun without it. What strategy there is lies in planning which upgrades you want and how to get the resources you need for them. It's interesting enough to keep the game fun and engaging for adults, but I think it's real strength lies in being able to give younger kids (or new gamers) a taste of strategy games without being overwhelming.

If you're considering this game for an adult game group, I think it could still be a fun addition to your collection. The mechanics are fun and the strategy, though light, is definitely there. However, I'm not sure how many times this game will hit the table. It's a little long to be a classic 'filler' game for those 20-30 minute gaps, but a little light to really be a meaty part of the session. After playing it through twice with a couple of friends one evening, I felt that the experience had been enjoyable but not necessarily one that I would rush to repeat in that environment again (though I must say, one of my friends absolutely adored the game to the point that she's actively looking into buying it, so don't take my impression as the only one that's valid).

For adults, the replay-ability is likely going to be low. The board is modular, but it doesn't introduce enough randomness to make the games feel significantly different. For kids and families, I don't see that being as much of an issue. When playing with younger kids, I think the most important thing about the modular board is that the difficulty can be controlled.

There are some other points in the game's favour that I want to mention. The rule book is short, simple and does a great job of teaching the game. In fact, everything about the game is clear and easy to digest. The iconography is logical and any writing is kept short and unambiguous.

I also want to mention the choice of colour for the four players. They have the standard red, blue and yellow, but instead of green as the fourth - which can cause issues for people with colour-blindness - the publishers went with white. The coloured resource spaces on the board also contain unique imagery for each type, rather than relying on colour alone, which is another important consideration.

It comes down to this: there are people that I would recommend Flicky Spaceships to in a heartbeat and others who can safely pass it by. If you're only going to be playing with adults, this game probably isn't quite short enough or, on the other hand, heavy enough, to see a lot of play. However, if you're looking for a family game to play with kids, I think Flicky Spaceships is perfect. It's a great mix of light strategy and fun spaceship flicking.