Peril on the Tabletop

Even though boardgames aren’t part of the RIP Challenge, I thought it would be fun to open up my closet and share some games with spooky, mysterious, or horrifying themes. Let’s start with the theme of zombies.

Zombie Dice

Zombie Dice

Zombie Dice is a simple dice game. In Zombie Dice, you take on the role of a hungry zombie in search of brains. The first zombie to collect thirteen brains wins. To collect brains, you roll dice three at a time. When you roll a brain, you may add it to your collection. Rolling a foot icon means that your meal has escaped and you may roll that die again. Rolling an explosion means that your meal fought back. If you collect three explosions, your turn ends and you lose all the brains you collected this turn.

I’d recommend this as a travel game, as it could easily be played at an airport, on a train, or in a motel.

Zombies!!!

Zombies!!!

Zombies!!! has been around for a while. It’s on its second edition and has spawned a great many expansion packs. The object of Zombies!!! is to survive a zombie infestation. To do so, you may either be the first to defeat 25 zombies, or you may wait for the rescue chopper to arrive. Either strategy is fraught with peril.

A player has about a fifty-fifty chance of defeating a zombie, though there are tokens and cards to turn the odds in the player’s favor. When a player is defeated by a zombie, he returns to the starting square and loses half of his zombie trophies.

Is waiting for the chopper a better idea? Well, Zombies!!! is a game where the board is built up as play progresses. There are 30 city tiles. Each one, when played, brings more zombies to the party. Since the heliport is always placed at the bottom of the tile stack, you will be waiting a while for it to appear. When it does, you will still have to brave the zombie-lined streets to get there.

Although Zombies!!! can sometimes be a long game, it is relatively easy to learn, which could make it a good choice for a game night.

Zombie Fluxx

Zombie Fluxx

Fluxx is a card game with only one rule: Draw one card, then play one card. The goal of the game changes as play progresses, as do the rules. There are four basic card types. Rules modify the game’s basic rules. Goals set the game’s victory conditions. Actions let players take actions such as swapping hands, stealing cards, or removing rules from play. Finally, there are Keepers, which usually don’t do anything on their own, but they are needed to win the game. Goals usually require a player to possess some combination of Keepers to win.

Zombie Fluxx has added an additional card type, Creepers. These are sort of anti-Keepers that make the game more difficult to win. A player is required to play a Creeper, when one is drawn. Creepers sometimes also have additional effects. For example, a zombie Creeper named Larry changes ownership whenever a new Goal is played.

Whenever I’m asked to bring along a board game, I usually bring Fluxx, since it’s extremely easy to learn, but is never the same game twice.

Well, that pretty much exhausts my supply of the zombieific. Fear not, for there is more to explore: the ghostly, the occult, and the Lovecraftian.

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