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Robot Racing to the Extreme!

As one of several supercomputers in a fully automated widget factory, you have it made.

You are brilliant.
Your are powerful.
You are sophisticated.
You are BORED.

Time to enjoy a little fun at the factory's expense! With the other computers, program factory robots and pit them against each other in frantic, destructive races across the factory floors. Be the first to touch the flags, in order, and you win it all: the honor, the glory, the grudging respect of the other computers. But first you have to get your robot past obstacles like gaping pits, industrial lasers, moving conveyor belts and, of course, the other robots!

User Reviews (28)

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The Gold Heart
Plaid Hat Games fan
Sentinels of the Multiverse fan
Bronze Supporter
91 of 96 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“Why is this one of the best games...?”

Having Played RoboRally since its first edition, I can’t recommend a game more. It has all the classic earmarks of a great game – easy to learn, difficult to master, good level of strategy and of course.. the unexpected. Disclaimer: Dont take this game too seriously. It’s fun lies in it’s simplicity. Lets break it down…

Style/Components: (Kind Cartoony…)
The art and theme are not what would be considered “mature.” RoboRally is definitely more youthful in appearance, with comical cartoon robots and and even a game theme that evokes memories of Looney Tunes robots in a Acme meat packing plant. The components are durable and appropriate for gameplay, and the graphic art on the cards and game boards are great. Color addition to the later editions (although the 1st edition pewter robots changed to plastic) made it that much more attractive – but look and feel are a minor attribute for this game.

Gameplay: (Great mechanics means great fun!)
How does it play?
RoboRally set the standard for “programmed move” game-play. And as with all programmed move turns, the fun begins when the moves are revealed and compared to the hidden choices of the other players. Richard Garfield knew that it was all about the multiplicity of mathematics, but created a purely fun experience in the way the little robots move around the game board when trying to achieve the seemingly simple goal of capturing a flag. I said that he gameplay is simple – and it is.. Choose cards, flip them, move your robot. Of course, it gets more complicated as different situations arise (robot damage and especially game board attributes such as smashers and conveyor belts.) But really – that it! The strategic challenge is for a player to plan their move not only based on where they want their robot to go, but where they expect their opponents’ robots to go. The seemingly random interference of other players is your biggest obstacle as a player – not being a rules guru or brilliant strategist. If you love games where anything can happen, and have a good sense of humor – where the game is in control of you, and not the other way around, then RoboRally will delight.

A few tips…
1. Be patient. Planning a move, especially for new players (and those without a swivel chair) can take some time. Don’t use the timer included. (unless your play group is cut-throat) It’s a little hard core. It take the fun out of the game.

2. Because of #1 above, playing multiple flags with more than 3 players can take a while. (a 6 player/3 flag game I played once took over 4 hours) So play with less flags if you have more players. The game can get frustrating if it goes on too long.

3. Using the Option Cards the way the rules instruct (ending on a double wrench space) make them few and far between. Hey, it’s a robot factory! Starting the game with an Option card and handing them out more often makes the game even more fun. Try it!

Value: (Wow! Great play for the price!)
If memory serves, the 1st edition went for around $24 – now its a bit more expensive in the mid 30’s. To add this game to your library, its worth even more. Buy it. Its worth it.

Overall Review: (A Game Shelf Must)
Great replay and always… I’ll say it again.. always fun. Easy to learn, and to play, again great strategy planning for your turn with a good balance of luck and mayhem. Best played casually with friends and families. But hard-core gamers can play with a bit more “zeal” if you will, since it has all the properties of a “kill or be killed” game experience.

Also, I highly recommend this game for families of young gamers… The box says “ages 12 and up” but I disagree. The Program cards are simply directional arrows with a number on top. They may need help moving over some more complicated board features and reading the Option cards, but I have played many times with my 6 year old nephew. (He even won once or twice) The game has a youthful, cartoon-like feel about it and is perfect for a lighthearted evening of fun with anyone who is in touch with their inner child. Just like Richard Garfield must have been when he designed it.

Lastly, the original game had 4 expansions (Armed and Dangerous, Crash and Burn, Radioactive and Grand Prix – all in the late 90’s) Each added new Factory Floors, Robots, Option Cards and much more. A testament to its success, these are very difficult to find. One could only hope that they may be reprinted one day.

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I play black
93 of 100 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“Slowest Race Evah!”

Sunday night is game night at the Gamer Bling household. Sadly, this does not mean watching football. Happily it means playing games with the Gamer Bling Official Companion, Gamer Bling Expansion #1, and Gamer Bling Expansion #2.

The quiet lull after the Expansions are shelved for the night is a decent enough time for Gamer Bling to spout his opinion on the Game of the Week. This week, that game was RoboRally, as chosen by Gamer Bling Expansion #2.

The below should all be approached with the understanding that Gamer Bling owns the original version of the game from 1994, as well as a few extra boards he scrounged here and there. Any improvements in the 2005 reprint remain unknown to Gamer Bling, and are therefore unimportant.

The Promise

RoboRally promises “Robot Racing to the Extreme!” And, in Gamer Bling’s opinion, “extreme” starts with this marketing promise.

You steer a robot across a map filled with various environmental hazards, including but not limited to conveyors, crushers, lasers, oil slicks, pits, and your fellow racers. With Phil Foglio illustrations, it promises to be a game of wacky zany racing.

Sounds like great family fun, right?

The Delivery

Each turn, you program your robot’s movement across the board using a selection of cards, each of which has one action printed on it (“Turn Right,” “Move 2,” etc.). Your hand starts at nine cards, but gets smaller as you get damaged. Of these nine (or less) you choose five to get yourself across the board.

Your goal is to tag each of the however-many flags you placed on the course during setup.

Thus each turn boils down to this basic subroutine:

* Inspect your limited options for movement.
* Arrange them in an order that best progresses you toward your goal.
* Rinse, repeat.

Gamer Bling finds that this game is not particularly wacky, inasmuch as 2/3 to 3/4 of the game time is planning, and the rest is execution. It moves quite slowly for a race game.

The wackiness does arise on occasion when one robot bumps into another and knocks it off course. If this happens early enough in the turn, the hapless second robot can get sent careening in the wrong direction while following its program.

Sadly, this does not happen often, because there is too much room on the board and the robots easily get split up geographically. This past game we just finished, one robot was knocked one square once, to no major effect.

Gamer Bling also notes that when RoboRally used to be demoed at the WotC booth at Gen Con by the late Paul Randles, Paul demoed it on a board that was a quarter the size of just one of the board tiles provided in the game. That promoted interaction between the robots!

The game also rather breaks when one stops thinking about the fun of being wacky and focuses on the goal of running the race most efficiently. Gamer Bling usually wins this game by crushing margins by doing just that, rather than trying to get repairs, upgrades, or mess up other players like the Expansions do.

Skills Required

As a homeschool parent, Gamer Bling believes in seizing every opportunity for learning. Here’s what the kids can learn or practice with RoboRally.

Spatial Orientation: This is a biggie. You must be able to steer your robot right and left when it is across the table, facing you, and sitting on a rotating gear. This has led many to do the infamous “RoboRally Dance,” wherein one uses hands, fingers, bodily facing, pens, or what have you to diddle one’s way around the board. Watching this is often more entertaining than the game itself.

Optimization: You have limited resources, and you must apply them in as efficient a manner as possible.

Planning: One must scout the best route to advance to the flags. For example, conveyor belts are obstacles if the run against you, but beneficial if they run with you, thus going out of your way to catch the right conveyor can make a lot of difference.

Family Game Night Value

Kids love it. Boys especially, since it involves lasers and crushers and pushing people into pits.

It’s accessible, and a solid gateway game for non-gamers.

And it’s fun while it’s new. As a veteran gamer, however, this reviewer is tired of it. He only keeps it around because Gamer Bling Expansion #2 keeps asking to play it.


For a race game, it’s slow.

For a nominally wacky game, it’s pretty dry.

Pick it up if it’s cheap, or you want to house-rule it into shape.

And thank you for taking the time to read a Gamer Bling Sunday Night Review.

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Novice Reviewer
I play red
72 of 79 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“Robots, chaos and destruction”

Robo Rally is a racing game (for the most part) where players program robots to make them walk trough the level and be the first to reach all of the numbered flags in order. That is the innocent sounding version of Robo Rally, now for the fun details.

The central mechanic in Robo Rally is the programming of the robots to make them move. Each round players are dealt up to 9 cards called action cards which are more easily described as movement cards. Then all players look at the cards simultaneously and start to program their robots five memory registers. Cards are rotate left, rotate right, u turn, move 1, move 2, move 3, back up. Programming is meant to go as quickly as possible and when programming you must declare “finished” as soon as you are done. When the second to last player calls finish a 30 second timer is turned and the last player must finish programming within those 30 seconds, if not he must stop at 30 seconds and let the player to the right shuffle his remaining cards into his remaining empty registers. The challenge is to be able to move your robot on the map by creating a sequence of movements that correspond to the map and the other players robots, also the map hazards. Map hazards consist of conveyor belts, express conveyor belts, lasers, pushers, pits and the edge of the board. Programming the robot to move correctly is hard because all players program and move their robots at the same time and whenever robots are about to collide or push each other then the number on the action card determines which robot moves first, often deciding if a robot gets pushed of it’s intended course (almost never a good thing) or perhaps even pushed down a pit and is destroyed.

In addition to being destroyed when falling down a pit or outside the course, robots take and deliver damage to each other. At the end of each memory register (after each action card is resolved) all robots fire lasers in front of themselves in a straight line, any robot that stands in that line is damaged one point. A robot can take 10 damage points before being destroyed, but damage affects the robot also. For each damage point taken the player is dealt one less card to program with, after four damage points the damage causes the memory registers to lock, meaning that the card last put on the register is stuck in that register until the robot is healed or starts a new life. Each robot has three life tokens, after being destroyed a life token is removed and the robot begins again at the spawn token for that robot. When the last life token is removed the player is out of the race. To heal the robot during the race it has to stop at the end of the turn (not end of a memory register phase) at a repair or repair/upgrade site, healing away one damage token. Stopping at repair/upgrade sites at the end of turn adds a upgrade that makes the robot more powerful in various ways. The flag posts are also repair sites. Each time a robot stops at a repair site at the end of a register phase then that robot moves his respawn token to that site so that if the robot dies it starts again at that location.

Now the programming, damage and race aspect of the game is just the stage on which the genius of Robo Rally unfolds. When you play Robo Rally the rules are nothing more then a setup for chaos and madness. You have the stress of programming the robot as fast as possible to avoid getting random registers, the difficulty of moving the robot and taking into consideration the conveyors and pushers on the board and last but not least the impossible task of avoiding being pushed and damaged by other robots, it all adds up to chaos and destruction. This chaos is, for me at least, the real fun and genius of Robo Rally. When resolving the registers it is always tense and exciting to see 1) what did you really make your robot do and 2) how are the other robots going to affect your intended path. Simply pushing your robot one space off course may be the difference of life or death, victory or defeat, triumph or failure. The simple and genius way the game resolves competing movements with simple numbers on the action cards also makes for tension, you want to push that robot down the pit, but if he moves with a card with a higher priority then he gets away!

The chaos aspect of Robo Rally really shines because of it’s simple (relatively) rules and elegant execution and it also keeps strongly to the theme. You are supercomputers programming robots with instructions placed on memory registers that resolve according to priority and it does actually feel that way. As you get damaged and get fewer cards and eventually get locked registers it gets harder and harder to not loose control of your robot and the level of chaos in the game steadily increases the further it progresses. You can shut down your robot to heal it completely, but that leaves it dead in the water for others to push or fire lasers at, or even worse, you power down on a conveyor that puts you on a path of destruction. If you don’t shut down or find a repair site you might end up with a robot that is impossible to control anyway because you get more locked registers and very few cards to program it with. The chaos aspect of the game is what makes it genius, but it also makes it feel more of a random and uncontrollable game then a true strategy game, but that is the strength and weakness of Robo Rally.

The game comes with several course maps and flag tiles to put on them, the instructions come with several course suggestions, some which have special rules. But these are merely suggestions and the game lends itself really well to custom rules and courses so the replay value here is pretty big if you have the tiniest sliver of game tweaking in you (or you can just Google some suggestions as well).

Robo Rally is a brilliant board game that is action packed and full of chaotic and funny moments where you and others will cry out in jubilee or frustration many, many times during a single game. It might not be for everyone, strategy gamers especially, but you should try it at least once, you are most likely to get hooked on the chaos and fun of Robo Rally.

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Advanced Reviewer Bronze Supporter
71 of 78 gamers found this helpful
“It only follows your commands...”

Robo Rally is a board game invented by Richard Garfield (who is also the creator of Magic: the Gathering). The game rules say that players impersonate supercomputers. Well, let it be so for advertisement purposes. In fact the players are programmers.

The aim of the game is to let your robot get through a race track. To do so you should program your robot using a simple set of commands like: “move forward”, “move fast forward”, “turn”, “move backward” etc. Each turn you get a bunch of special command cards and you should use them as effectively as possible.

Doing so you should take into account interactions between your robot and the game board as well as its interactions with other robots. As for the environment – the board represents a factory; so crushers may destroy your robot, conveyor belts may carry it, some other elements may push or turn it, your robot may have troubles to stop if there’s oil leak on the floor, and some doors open and close periodically… As for other robots – they push each other and even can inflict damage to opposing machines using laser beams. If you miscalculate something, your tin can starts to walk aimlessly for the rest of the turn. Or sometimes worse: it walks straightly to its doom.

It all sounds to be a good fun and it is so. In fact the more players the more fun, as with a lot of robots on-board some interactions are quite unpredictable and often hilarious.

But the game has also a big educative potential! If it is played with children (preferably as 2- or 3-player game) it teaches the basics of programming. No former Robo Rally player would ever claim The computer is stupid: it does not do what I want!”. The Robo Rally players know: the machines do not do what we want. The machines do what we ordered them to do. They are only following our commands!

I recommend this game as a source of both fun and wisdom.

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Critic - Level 5
Professional Advisor
Expert Reviewer
Marquis / Marchioness
66 of 73 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“Great Game (if you're in the mood for it)”

Robo Rally is a game I really enjoy, as long as I’m in the mood to play it. If I want to play a game with a lot of strategic decisions, a lot of depth, or to maximize my score, I’ll leave Robo Rally on the shelf.

If I’m looking to have a great time, not worry about winning, and enjoy a social game with friends (with substantial trash talking) Robo Rally sits at the top of the list.

Robo Rally can be quite random. It’s chaotic, it’s a blood bath (oil bath?) and it’s awesome!

You’re programming a robot to race around a factory floor, capture-the-flag style. Each turn you get a hand of 9 cards, and must program a five-card sequence. Cards can consist of moving forward (1, 2, or 3 spaces), backing up, turning left, turning right, or U-turning. The cards are randomly dealt; you make the most of what you get. Then, everyone reveals their cards one-at-a-time, and moves their robots around.

Of course, robots have a physical presence and take up space. A simultaneous reveal of cards means you don’t know where you opponents might be. You may push them, they may push you. You may shoot holes into each other, or be moved around a conveyer. Having set your cards ahead of time means you can’t react to changes, your robot follows its program, sometimes into a pit.

Not only are you dealing with other robots, the factory floor has a number of effects (walls, conveyers, pushers, lasers, oil, fire, teleporters, etc). There will be turns where one robot just spins around while another gets pointed the wrong way and drives off to its doom. As you take more damage, you get fewer cards to choose from. Take enough damage and you’ll need to power down for a turn, or deal with “locked registers” where you robot keeps cards from the previous turn as it’s later cards, forcing it to perform those actions.

If you’re in the mood for this sort of game, it’s as good as it gets. If you’re not, it’s a painful experience. (Another game I put in this sort of “mood” category is Killer Bunnies, which can be great with the right group, or abysmal with the wrong one). Once you know what to expect, and everyone is going in with the same mindset, Robo Rally hurts so good!

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Intermediate Reviewer
Novice Advisor
52 of 59 gamers found this helpful
“Heaven for programmers!”

Roborally is one of my oldest games (I have the first ed by Wotc) and it will always have a special place in my heart. This is as geeky as it gets, and programming stoopid robots in a dangerous factory can never be wrong, can it? The theme is beautifuly orchestrated and when playing with experienced players every turn doesn’t take that long.

Some people seem to believe that luck is a big factor in this game, but my experience says otherwise. A set of programming cards can often be used in clever ways that a weak player will never see. In our sessions it’s seldom someone else than a really good programmer that will come close to winning. Granted, the option cards increase the luck factor, some of them are MUCH more useful than others, but all in all this is a game of skill, not luck.

There are two main problems with this game, the first one is that it takes some time to get a newbie to understand the rules, even if you pick nice game boards with a limited number of elements. After a few “real” turns this usually sort itself out, but if new people are to play you need to set some time aside to get them going. The other problem is the leader breakaway syndrome, where the leader lose contact with the other robots and therefore have less movement obstruction and that in turn tend to increase the gap. this can be solved by clever placing of the flags so that the robots paths will constantly cross each other.

This is a game quite like no other, and it contained revolutionary game mechanics. A true classic and I recommend it with my whole metal heart. Twonky for president!

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50 of 58 gamers found this helpful
“Wonderful surprise! ”

I received Robo Rally as a gift. I was intrigued because it was given to me by some avid gamers but I still had my doubts. After the first play my doubts were gone. This has quickly become one of our standard games on game night. It is a great game that fills the need for a bit of mayhem between the heavier strategic games. If you don’t like a little randomness and being shot in your backside by a laser before having your character sent uncontrollably off in the wrong direction, then don’t try this game. For those that like to have a laugh yet still be challenged, try Robo Rally.

There is obviously some luck involved in the card draws but unlike some games you always feel that you do have a chance to get that luck “under control.” It can at times become very frustrating but at least you’ll be laughing all the way down the bottomless pit you were just pushed into. Very high replay value.

A must have for any group of avid gamers.

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3 Beta 1.0 Tester
Novice Reviewer
53 of 62 gamers found this helpful
“The only game I've ever played that I can't stand.”

When it comes to gaming, there are few games I won’t play. I have a large collection spanning from party games like Apples to Apples to heavy games like Brass by Martin Wallace. Unfortunately, after playing this game twice, I’ll never play it again.

I’m no stranger to randomness in games, nor logical thinking. In fact I can often be seen rolling dice of one form or another. However, in Robo Rally I found the chaos of the pre-programming and hoping for the best to be absolutely infuriating. With the inability to react to your opponents moves, I would find myself often back where I started after being slain in a pit, or blown to pieces.

On the board we played, with four people, there were clearly better starting positions than others. This was an immediate deterrent. While this can be mitigated somewhat by using other startup tiles (the board is modular), they all suffer from it.

If you have a gamer in your group that suffers from Analysis Paralyses, be forewarned, there is a timer and if you don’t get your actions programmed, they don’t happen. You sit there.

I wanted to like this game, and I really haven’t played anything similar (thankfully), so I don’t have a similar game to recommend. I don’t mind randomness, but I couldn’t stand this game!

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Count / Countess
Went to Gen Con 2012
I play black
51 of 62 gamers found this helpful
“Computer Science teachers should use this in class”

RoboRally is a lighthearted boardgame with a high “bash your opponent” component. Your goal is to help your robot navigate across a hostile manufacturing floor while avoiding pits and the edges of the field, dodging lasers, riding conveyor belts and shoving other players’ bots.

It’s a great tool for teaching basic programing skills to young people because it shows how machines do exactly what they’re programmed to do, regardless of changes to their environment. Players start each round by placing 5 program cards in a specific order. Each card has a simple action on it, like move forward 1, rotate 90 degrees left, or back up 1. Your robot performs these actions in the exact order you placed them. If another player happens to push your robot onto a conveyor belt between steps 2 and 3, so it goes. Your robot will do the actions, but they will take place farther down the line than you expected.

One of the best features of the game is the locking mechanism. Once your robot starts to take damage, some of its memory slots, containing the action cards, start to lock up. If your 5th action is “Back Up 1 Space” and that slot gets locked up, your 5th action for every turn thereafter will be “Back Up 1 Space.”

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50 of 64 gamers found this helpful
“Fun in a box”

You are an extremely bored AI, you have robots and you have factory floors. What would you do? It’s a race, it’s an obstacle course, it’s a chance to kill all your friends robots in order to rule the factory floor. I’ve found that with this type of race game (ones where you “program” movements) that either you love them, or you hate them. I, personally, love them. The newest incarnation of this has some really good things. The robot pawns now have arrows on their bases to show their facing. The “start” board is a nice addition, and the player boards are very helpful. Some people have rated the replay value as low, but I do not agree. With 5 boards and 6 flags, this can be a very different game each time. If you can pick up some of the older boards, you can add great variety to the game. I also know several people (including me) that have made up their own themed boards in order to make even more variety. This is a classic game and should be in everyone’s library.

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62 of 80 gamers found this helpful
“15 years of entertainment.”

I have had this game since it first came out in the 90s and have been playing it off and on for years.

The premise of the game is to move your robot, using cards dealt to you, to each of the flags that players have placed during setup. While traveling to each flag players will push, pull, shoot, their way to victor. Hilarity can in sue when players push each other (whether by accident or grand design) causing a player’s careful planned movement to go horribly wrong by shooting other robots followed by falling into a bottomless pit.

This is a great game for younger players because the mechanics of the game are all about sequencing. A causes B which causes C. I found that it is also helpful in teaching directions to players (learning left from right when your character is facing an odd direction).

Over all this game has a lot of replay value because as you can set the board any which way. The only thing static is the board layout, however by moving flags from one location to the square next to it can greatly disrupt movement on the board as well as change gamers strategy.

Over the years my friends and I have developed new game variations. The rules dictate that gamers must race to each flag. However players can also do variants of “Capture the Flag,” “King of the Hill,” and “Death Match” to keep the game fresh and enjoyable.

The game is out of print but copies are available through Amazon around $40. Expansions were made but they can be hard to find. Fans of the games have created tools so players could print up custom made boards.

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Gave My First Grade
52 of 72 gamers found this helpful
“Enigmatic For Some, Ponderous For Others”

I played this game just once, with a group of six guys who were all but one new to it.

The guy who owned it had a blast.

The other five guys were pretty much ready for it to end after the first turn.

First of all, it’s a painfully simple game. The hi jinks that the box advertises as exciting and unexpected are often just the opposite: mundane and thoroughly unsurprising. We didn’t find ourselves laughing when our robots fell off the board or got shot to pieces. We found ourselves mourning the fact that the game wasn’t moving faster.

Secondly, there’s an immense amount of luck that controls almost every moment of the game.It’s a bit like the old magnetic football game where you turned it on and just watched the players collide and hoped the ball moved somewhere.

Finally, the board construction and game pieces are pretty ho-hum, with a LOT of sticker preparation required for such a simple game.

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50 of 72 gamers found this helpful
“If you can...”

If you can spend a few minutes crafting a careful set of moves only to see it derailed and slowly sending your robot to the first of many deaths by someone’s, usually accidental, careening into your path without screaming and leaping across the table this game is for you. If you can get your moves plotted quickly so that you can sit back and watch the other players doing the “robot dance of love”(they writhe in their seats as they try to envision what each command will actually make their robot do) triggered by the fact that earlier they sent there robot left when they REALLY MEANT TO SEND IT TO THE RIGHT this game is for you. If you can enjoy a game and not take it personally when someone shoots you with a laser from across the board or leaves mines in your path then this game is for you. Otherwise, look elsewhere.

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I Own a Game!
50 of 72 gamers found this helpful
“Programming: The Board Game”

Every programmer friend I have (including myself) loves RoboRally. Everyone else hates it.

If you want to teach programming concepts, it’s a great game.

If you want to play a really great, fun, competitive, fast-moving game, hectic free for all, and all the people playing are experienced programmers, it’s a great game.

If you’re in a casual group, it’s really not a great fit. One person will keep misunderstanding what ‘turn left’ means, another will just run into pits left and right, and the programmer among you will just race to the flags alone.

I’d definitely buy it if you have a number of programmer board game buddies. Otherwise, I’d look elsewhere.

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Professional Reviewer Beta 1.0 Tester
Silver Supporter
Sentinels of the Multiverse fan
41 of 61 gamers found this helpful
“A fun game if you like chaos! A good intro to kids into programming!”

I like this game, although my beef with it is not the chaos. I understand that this game is about chaos and craziness. However, this game can get quite long especially with more players. It is nice they have a timer for the last player to select actions, but it still takes a while.

This game reminds me of computer programming, because you’re trying to program your robot’s next 5 actions. You race your robots to flags that have to be done in order. The first one to the last flag wins the game. In between each action is when the insanity happens, between laser beams, assembly line belts, and turn sections.

Overall, if you don’t mind the chaos, and perfectly laid plans spoiled, then this game can be fun.

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51 of 76 gamers found this helpful
“Chaotic and Somewhat Brain-burning”

The movement in RoboRally can be a little hard for some to wrap their head around, and because of this it can be a frustrating game. Once you understand how to the play the cards that’ll move your bot where you hope to go, and how the board movement also affects your bot movement, it becomes a great game; even if it is a little chaotic and random. Personally, I think that’s a big part of the draw with this game. You carefully plan your moves and play your cards, while being very conscious of the board’s moving parts, but then your movement goes all wrong because you were pushed by another player’s bot. It makes the game a little more challenging but also more humorous. This is one of my all-time faves.

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Advanced Grader
50 of 75 gamers found this helpful
“Even more fun to watch your spacially-challenged co-players”

RoboRally is a good game for a little while, but I imagine that it would drag on if you played too many times in a row. There are many board setups to choose from, so you should have lots of options, but at the same time, the mechanic has the potential to become monotonous.

That being said, however, I do enjoy the game. It gives you a good mental workout for your spacial thinking, with enough added mayhem and chance to make it more fun than taking an IQ test. I especially like the mechanic where, once you start taking too much damage, your cards become locked until you power down.

Two things that I think would really help this game be of higher quality would be:
1) painted miniatures with an obvious “facing” so that you can see which direction you’re pointed from across the board, and;
2) a LOT more cards. There is far too much shuffling needed when playing with four players.

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50 of 78 gamers found this helpful
“A great game! But watch for letting it run on ...”

This is a very fun game. I have two recommendations for new players:
1) Even if you grab expansions, just play with the base game for your first time or two. The many different add-ons can be daunting.
2) Place only a few flags for your first few games, and place them fairly close together. (Such as two boards with three flags.)

A fun note:
As I understand it, this game was brought to Wizards of the Coast (WotC) by Magic: The Gathering (M:TG) designer, Richard Garfield. WotC told him that it was too expensive for them to make and suggested another type of game that they would be interested in seeing. It would be something you could carry around with you and would be quick to play. From that, Garfield come up with M:TG. M:TG was, of course, very successful right away, and WotC used some of the profits to make Richard’s other game. Lucky us!

Player Avatar
Novice Reviewer
Critic - Level 2
50 of 81 gamers found this helpful
“Good game if a bit random”

This game is crazy, and by crazy I mean that you should throw strategy out the window when other players and their robots are indecipherable variables on the board. Can be fun or frustrating, depending on your mood. A player can strategize well and have dumb luck with how the plays work themselves out on the board. I still love the game, but this one probably isn’t for the power gamer.

This one does have lots of replay value, however, with all of its boards and fan-made downloadable arenas.

Player Avatar
Gamer - Level 8
Expert Recruiter
Count / Countess Beta 1.0 Tester
50 of 82 gamers found this helpful
“Crazy fun!”

This game is quite crazy. You have to set up your turn ahead of time, planning moves and (hopefully!) anticpating the moving board elements, various hazards and other players. It’s great for people with logical minds (programmers!), but still crazy hilarious fun for others. A great game by the creator of Magic: The Gathering!


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