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The Great Desert Race

Written by: Matt

It surprised me that Neopets didn't have a board game before this but, knowing the quality of their other games I sat down to place this expecting high quality production. Suffice to say, I was sorely disappointed. Never had I played such a tedious and ill-thought out game.

The Premise

Remember when you were little and you made your first board game? Basically, it was a big snake of squares with various things written on each of them. "Move forward two squares," one might say. "Go back to the beginning"; "lose a turn"; you get the idea. You might draw something pretty on it, but basically all it came down to was who could throw the higher numbers, whilst dodging some ridiculous traps. Basically, this game is one of those. A long, uninteresting line which players must walk along.

Oh, but wait! That's not it! There's something that makes it even more ridiculously tedious than that, if you can believe it. Each player controls two pieces and can choose which to move after the die is rolled. This means that not only does it take longer to complete (and it goes at a snail's pace normally, believe me), but it renders each of the traps pointless as they become easy to dodge by simply waiting for a better roll.

The most irritating thing about these games is that you have to throw exact numbers to make it on to the last square, meaning your last throws are just waiting hopelessly for a 1.

The Opponent

If computers ever take over the world, you can imagine the AI on this game being the ditsy blond. In the first game I played, the computer's piece landed on Sutek's Tomb, which takes you back to the beginning, which could have been easily avoided had he waited a turn and moved the other piece. In fact, not only did he do it once, he proceeded to do it three more times. The next game I played, he did the same thing with both his pieces.

It wouldn't be so bad if the game itself weren't so slow. Not only are each of the moves a good 10 seconds each, but it insists of showing all of the computer's moves in its entirety, even when your two pieces are finished. My first game ended by me waiting for about 5 minutes for Brucey B to finally reach the end of the course, and the last minute of that was me waiting for him to throw a 1 to make it onto the last square.


Haha, strategy--in this game? Click randomly and hope you beat something with the intelligence of a rutabaga.

There is a strategy to get unlimited points, but this doesn't make it a game of skill, just a game of working out how to abuse the system, in all honesty.


I don't think you'll be surprised to hear me say that I am considerably negative about this game. It's a board game whose resounding influence should be luck; however, by adding an element of so-called 'strategy', they've done away with both the luck aspect and the skill aspect and the enjoyment of the game. I wouldn't even play this for neopoints, as the time I wasted on it got me about 300.

In conclusion, I'd rather put cut onions in my eyes than play this game.

Matt thinks there should be more actual racing in a game that is supposedly so great.

Stickygumdrops finally escaped the desert after a bizarre incident involving a holographic kitten.

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