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- 2010 Mensa Favorite Brainy Games Winner
- Join a team of fearless adventurers on a do-or-die mission to capture four sacred treasures from the ruins of this perilous paradise
- 2 to 4 players
- Strategic thinking, problem solving and cooperation required
- Ages 10 and up
- Playing time: 30 minutes
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From the manufacturer
Forbidden Island is a visually stunning cooperative board game. Instead of winning by competing with other players like most games, everyone must work together to win the game. Players take turns moving their pawns around the 'island', which is built by arranging the many beautifully screen-printed tiles before play begins. As the game progresses, more and more island tiles sink, becoming unavailable, and the pace increases. Players use strategies to keep the island from sinking, while trying to collect treasures and items. As the water level rises, it gets more difficult- sacrifices must be made.
With multiple levels of difficulty, different characters to choose from (each with a special ability of their own), many optional island formats and game variations available, Forbidden Island has huge replay value. The game can be played by as few as two players and up to four (though it can accommodate five). More players translates into a faster and more difficult game, though the extra help can make all the difference. This is a fun game, tricky for players of almost any age.
Gear up for a thrilling adventure to recover a legendary flying machine buried deep in the ruins of an ancient desert city. You'll need to coordinate with your teammates and use every available resource if you hope to survive the scorching heat and relentless sandstorm. Find the flying machine and escape before you all become permanent artifacts of the forbidden desert!
In Forbidden Desert, a thematic sequel to Forbidden Island, players take on the roles of brave adventurers who must throw caution to the wind and survive both blistering heat and blustering sand in order to recover a legendary flying machine buried under an ancient desert city. While featuring cooperative gameplay similar to Forbidden Island, Forbidden Desert is a fresh, new game based around an innovative set of mechanisms such as an ever-shifting board, individual resource management, and a unique method for locating the flying machine parts.
Dare to discover Forbidden Island! Join a team of fearless adventurers on a do-or-die mission to capture four sacred treasures from the ruins of this perilous paradise. Your team will have to work together and make some pulse-pounding maneuvers, as the island will sink beneath every step! Race to collect the treasures and make a triumphant escape before you are swallowed into the watery abyss! The latest creation by cooperative game master, Matt Leacock who created the best seller Pandemic.
You and your team can be the first to breach the borders of the Archeans' ancient mystical empire in the collaborative card game Forbidden Island, by Gamewright. In this game, teamwork proves essential to locate the Earth Stone, the Statue of the Wind, the Crystal of Fire, and the Ocean's Chalice as the Island floods beneath your feet. Adventure... if you dare!
The Legend of the Archeans
This game is centered on the legend of the Archean empire, a civilization that possessed the ability to control the Earth's core elements--fire, wind, water, and earth--through four sacred treasures. These treasures stayed hidden from enemies for years on the Forbidden Island, which was designed to sink if intruders ever attempted to capture them. Set the appropriate water level for your gaming skill, and let the adventures begin!
Capture the Four Sacred Treasures Before the Island Sinks!
Your team of adventurers must work together to keep the Forbidden Island from sinking as you seek the four treasures hidden within. The mission is carried out using different combinations of Flood, Treasure, and Adventurer Cards on the 24 tiles that make up the Forbidden Island. Once you've captured each treasure using the appropriate cards, you must make it to Fools' Landing and escape by helicopter in order to win. If the island sinks before you complete your tasks, the mission ends in defeat.
Use Collaborative Play to Succeed
Each player is dealt an Adventure Card and given a corresponding pawn before the game starts, designating him or her with a certain set of strengths. This game is designed so that instead of competing with other players, you work to find the treasures and find out how to best use each Adventurer's strengths through collaborative play. This stimulates problem-solving and strategy skills.
What's in the Box
Water level marker, water meter, 58 playing cards, 24 island tiles, 6 pawns, 4 treasure figurines, rules of play, Gamewright catalog, and comment card.
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Forbidden Island With Free Storage Bag by Gamewright
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|Sold By||Amazon.com||Garden of toys||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||E-Brands||Amazon.com|
|Are Batteries Required||No||No||No||No||No||No|
|Item Dimensions||8.75 x 6.5 x 2.75 in||3.39 x 4.72 x 0.67 in||8.28 x 8.28 x 3 in||7 x 8 x 2 in||6.6 x 8.8 x 2.9 in||2.5 x 10.5 x 10.5 in|
|Item Weight||1.36 lbs||2 lbs||1.8 lbs||0.93 lb||—||2.07 lbs|
Top customer reviews
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* 1 - it's a cooperative game. We love cooperative games in our family because we aren't competing against each other, but rather working together as a team to beat the game. And we love that more designers and publishers are creating more cooperative games to play.
* 2 - it's easy to learn and simple to play. Take it from Caleb's video review. You simply set out the island tiles, draw your character card and follow the steps on the back of the card as to what to do on your turn. Pretty soon you won't need to look at the cards during the game, but it's great that the help is there if you need it.
* 3 - the re-playability. Since the game isn't played on a set board, but rather by area tiles, every time you set up the island it gets set up differently. And with 6 characters that each have their unique special abilities, you only get to play with a team of 4. So each time you play, you'll also have to deal with the characters you get (and you'll long for the special abilities of one you're missing). And on top of all that, you're dealing with the luck of the draw in the card deck, so you don't know which tiles will start flooding, then sinking away.
* 4 - it doesn't take a long time. The turns play really quickly and everyone is engaged the whole time and the island is always changing with tiles flooding, so there's a lot of discussion going on the whole game - which also makes it seem like it goes by fast.
* 5 - it's fun! The first time we played it, we played over and over. Granted we kept losing so we had to keep trying again. But that's what made it so fun. We would get so close and then just miss the win. So we'd quickly set it all up again for more.
Oh - and did I mention that Forbidden Island has fantastic artwork and great game components? We love the artwork and everything in the tin is high quality. The tiles are nice, thick and sturdy - which is a must because they will get flipped over a lot. And the treasure pieces are definitely treasures that you want to search out and get. The game components all help make it a fun game experience.
If you typically just read these board game reviews rather than watch the video, we'd suggest you take a look at the video to see the quality you're going to get with Forbidden Island.
You can read more about this and other great family board games on TheBoardGameFamily.
We have had Settlers of Catan and Carcassonne (with a number of expansion packs) for quite a few years now, and only recently added the other games above. We usually either play just as two adults, or with our two older children (age 9 and 8), and so our conclusions are based on how these games work in those settings. So here's what we've found:
Settlers of Catan
We got this around the same time as Carcassonne and initially just didn't latch onto it. Partly it's that it's supposed to be 3 players or more, and we often play as just two of us. Once we found online some instructions for playing as 2 players it came out more often, and as time's gone by it's become fairly 50-50 whether we play Settlers or Carcassonne on a quiet night in. The choice will usually depend on how much we want to think. With Settlers, you're always planning and calculating; with Carcassonne, you're taking it a card at a time.
Who should get it: Settlers is well-known as one of the great modern games. I'm not as sold on it as some people, and it takes quite a while to learn and feel comfortable with, but once you get the hang of it, it is an entertaining and enjoyable addition to a games collection. There are several 2-player rule variations out there if you need them and they work well (we found one that worked for us and we've stuck to it). But this isn't a game for kids; I would suspect not until they're 16 or so. Amongst other things, I think they'll find it too dull.
This has been a favorite for years now, and everyone we've played it with has gone off to get it themselves. We usually play without farms because it then becomes less directly competitive and more sociable. Kids can play it, adults can play it, it's relaxed, it's fun and it's simple to learn. Here's one nice thing about it: you don't have to be constantly thinking and planning ahead. You don't know what card you're going to draw next time, so you just play one card at a time. You're encouraged to discuss where to put a card, and since you don't know what piece you're getting next, your comments to another player are usually pretty unbiased.
Who should get it: In my experience, pretty much anyone, except those who want ultra-competitive games. The first few expansion packs are also well worth getting, but don't bother with anything from Mayor onward.
The kids love this one, again it's simple to learn and it has the added bonus of allowing them to get out their aggressive instincts and go postal on monsters! They don't like the `master slayer' option, but prefer just straight cooperative play. After the first few plays, I've found the basic game is too easy, and so we're experimenting with making it more challenging, such as starting with no walls, or drawing 3 monster cards at a time instead of 2. I think Castle Panic will become a game that we get out pretty regularly to play.
Who should get it: People with kids, who want to play cooperative games. Could be fun as a party game too!
While the kids have enjoyed playing this, I think their interest is starting to wane already. I suspect it will work better as a game with a group of adults, or when the kids are older. It has a lot going for it, especially the creative cards and board, but as others have noted - what's with the box for the tokens? Very poorly designed and adds unnecessary annoyance. Most of the time when playing we've found it's not too directly competitive, it's easier to attack lost tribes or declining races, so generally it doesn't get too personal!
Who should get it: I think this would make a fun addition to a games collection, but I don't think it would be a go-to game, especially with kids. The rules are more complicated to learn and explain than the other games, and this makes it hard to just sit down with new players and get on with a game. Having said that, we've enjoyed playing it , and I think it'll get pulled out every now and then over the years.
Although the kids would prefer Castle Panic, when we've played Forbidden Island (at my insistence!) they've thoroughly enjoyed it. As the island starts to collapse in a heap toward the end of the game, the tension levels rise and people are on the edge of their seats! The game always ends with voices rising in pitch and tension as cards get turned over - it's fun! It's a pure cooperative game, and that works well for us as a family - no one feels bad, we're all in it together. We're still using the `Normal' level of play, maybe we'll notch up a level soon!
Who should get it: If you like cooperative games, I think this is excellent to have. I love how easy it is to set different difficulty levels, and it's definitely the game that's had the most excited tension - Castle Panic has this at times, but not sustained (at least as the basic game). It doesn't have the whole monster thing going for it that Castle Panic does, and I think that's why the kids haven't latched onto it so quickly (kill trolls or wander round an island getting treasure - which is your average kid going to choose?) but I suspect that long-term it'll have more staying power.