This evening my wife Kathy played the light blue "Hippie Clan" of lemmings, my son played the light green "Soldier Clan," and I played the red "Biker Clan." Factions have no special abilities -- just a great deal of personality in the game piece art. Our game ran long, since it was a learning game -- perhaps two and a half hours from opening the box to final scoring, and that included dinner preparation and eating during the last part of the game. Ostensibly, a three-player game should take 30 to 45 minutes, and I think that might be true for three experienced players who are familiar with the game flow. The decision space is really not that large, so I can image the game length shortening as we get acquainted with LL.
|Way too many bikers in the |
Eagle Chow Pile
One aspect of the tactics in the game that I didn't take into account until late was the turn order and rotating control of the eagles. I hadn't considered that the relative safety of a lemming's position depends in part on who controls the eagles on the next turn. Whereas I was preoccupied with minimizing my vulnerability to the dice roll, I might have focused more on when I was going to control the eagles and what my options would be depending on which number came up on the eagle dice. I might have taken fewer risks on the wrong turns and been more daring in anticipation of holding the eagle dice on a later turn.
So we have a good initial impression of LL -- light-hearted, in the vein of Guillotine, but a legitimate game of tactics. It is by far a better game than the mechanically similar Lost World: Jurassic Park, because there is no play-balance issue as in that confrontation of dinosaurs vs. people. In fact, I wonder whether LW:JP couldn't be restructured along the lines of LL so that we could breathe new life into that old flawed sentimental favorite.