Luchador! Mexican Wrestling Dice is a two-player dice game (with optional rules for four-player tag-team play) based on the popular world of professional Mexican wrestling, or "Lucha Libre" (a.k.a. free fighting). Players start with 21 points of health (or 18 in a tag-team match) and roll custom dice to try to either reduce the opponent's strength points to zero to win by a knock-out (KO) or hold the opponent down on the mat for a "count of three" to win by a pin.
The player sitting near the 'red' corner of the wrestling ring uses 4 'red' wrestling dice, the player near the 'blue' corner, the 4 blue wrestling dice. Each player also has a HIT die and a PIN die.
Players begin by each rolling their own set of 'wrestling dice' at the same time, trying to ensure that they land in, or touching the wrestling ring. The results of HITs, BLOCKs, COUNTERs, and MISS rolled are played off against each other then the HIT dice can be rolled to see what damage they did. i.e Drop Kick, Forearm smash, Table slam etc. Damage is recorded on the Strength Score Card of the player being hit. If a player rolls two HITs in one round, instead of rolling the HIT dice twice, they can take a chance on the Luchador! die once which may result in their wrestler's trademark moves and inflict much more damage on their opponent.
Any PINs rolled in a round may be re-rolled, once only. However once an opponent is reduced on their strength to where they are pinable, the PIN die is held until after the HITs have been inflicted then the PIN die is rolled. If PIN comes up, the 'three count' begins. The player being pinned has three attempts to save, using their wrestling dice or lose the match.
In a tag-team match players have the choice of trying to tag-out to regain slight strength, but it can also cost them..., if they fail to tag and get dragged back into the ring by their eager opponent.
Let's get ready to rumble! Choose from the roster of characters, build the ring which will be the setting for the bout, place your standee in the red corner and hear the crowd go wild as you take your first roll into the ring
Luchador! Mexican Wrestling Dice by Mark Rivera is a must for anyone who enjoys wrestling, be that the classics like Mick McManus’ World of Wrestling or the modern offerings from WWE.
Ring the Bell
Each bout in Luchador! consists of both wrestlers rolling four dice each into the ring. Both wrestlers are hoping to score more hits and counters than their opponent manages to roll blocks, whilst making sure you don’t knock any of your dice out of the ring (these will be lost for that round). The hits you roll allow some choices to the damage you do.
Clear out the hit dice and roll your damage dice. At this point, the game benefits from players starting to role play. Now is the time to become the announcer; describing the carnage in the ring as your wrestler backhand chops your opponent before smashing them with a chair and lifting them high in the air and slamming them through the table. Oh the devastation!
However, Luchaor! is not just a simple dice chucker, you can trade up your successful hits to roll your own special luchador die. This obviously ups the ante. No longer are we talking 2-3 points damage, but instead we're unleashing special move combos that do real and lasting damage. To provide balance, picking up the back die does hold greater risk as your wrestler can end up misjudging their move, slipping and being stunned, leaving you rolling fewer dice on your next turn.
Rounds continue until your health drops below the indicated range on your player board. At this point rolling a pin on your hit dice allows you to attempt to pin your opponent. They then have three attempts to roll enough blocks or counters from four dice to kick out, as the referee drops to the mat slamming his hand on the table counting 1...2...
If successfully pinned you are the victor and to the victor go the spoils, in the shape of the provided mini title belt. If your opponent is lucky enough to kick out, another round gets started and the onslaught continues. If health reaches zero, you win by KO.
Final Thoughts on Luchador!
Luchador! is a great little game and is perfect as a filler or for families, helped on no doubt by an over enthusiastic parent dealing out over the top commentary which increases the fun-o-meter dramatically. However, once the base game is mastered you can change it up, why not bring in a couple of friends and make this a tag team match, bring out the advanced rule player boards which adds player specific weaknesses and killer combos. But it doesn't stop there; additional suggestions and ideas in the rulebook take you through free for all matches, tag team brawls and even the high-octane cage match.
Luchador! is so much fun, the components are great quality; the card ring, complete with corner posts and ropes, improves the look of the game no end from the original, and still included, play board. The quality of the player health and special moves cards is just right and the artwork for all the characters and standees are great. The dice are solid and easy to read, with instructions on each player card so you don't need to keep referencing the rulebook the two championship belts are a nice little extra.
The game is simple, easy to pick up and teach, and games are quick to play. With the additional play modes there is enough replay-ability for this type of game and it is a game that would come out for family gatherings, Saturday afternoons or as a fun little filler on a games night.
To get the best out of it though you need at least one brave soul to step up to the mic and throw down the commentary. This sets the scene and creates an atmosphere that makes you really feel each bone crunching moment , and increases the joy and laughter as those around the table cringe at the hype on the mic.
Although it's a wrestling game this is no heavyweight so if you are a fan of deeper games with lots of strategy and hours of gameplay this probably is not got you but if not...
...grab the mic and in your best American accent cry, "This bout is scheduled for one fall!"
If you all listen carefully you will hear the baying crowd shout back as one, "ONE FALL!" as you roll your Luchador! dice into the ring.
You Might Like
• Quick and easy to play.
• Simple rules.
• Fun increased by role-play.
• Replay-ability increases with additional game modes.
You Might Not Like
• Reliant on luck of the dice.
• Low level of strategy.