Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

The wrong kind of chaos: a review of Goblins, Inc.

Goblins Inc. is a game for four players that takes about an hour to play. Players form teams of two and compete to first build and then battle with a giant scrap robot crewed with goblins. Wacky hijinks ensue!

goblinsinccontents

The object of the game is to be the first individual player to get to 50 points. Points are scored through destroying the other team’s robot, and also through your own agenda card. Agenda cards are held by individual players and are revealed at the end of each round for possible bonus points.

Each round consists of a build phase where you construct the best robot from your available parts, and a battle phase where the two robot fight. At the end of each battle phase players are randomly put into new teams of two for the next round.

In the battle round one player shoots and the other player steers. However players are not allowed to discuss strategy with one another – goblins are not team players! In general the driver will wish to place as many guns facing the enemy robot as possible. Before movement the shooter chooses a direction to shoot in. This means that if the driver turns the wrong way, your shots are going to miss.

goblinsincbox

While this sounds fun, ultimately the game is flawed. If one player scores well in the first round, running ‘dead’ in future rounds can be both a winning strategy, and a frustration for everyone else.

Even if this doesn’t happen, the game tends to be more frustrating than fun, due to the strange interaction of teams and individual scoring. The individual agendas exacerbate this, with some requiring cooperation and others demand you sabotage your own team. Logistically, the idea of players swapping teams is awkward and involves people getting up and changing seats throughout the game.

Goblins Inc then becomes more like a rollercoaster ride, by which I mean I wish I didn’t start, and I hope it ends before I vomit.

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This entry was posted on September 12, 2015 by in Board Games, Review and tagged , , .
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