Cosmic Kaboom

Dexterity games provide a nice break from brain-heavy game activities that some of us know so well. There's something about flicking a game piece into another game piece that recalls a simpler time - sitting around the table in the junior high school cafeteria with your buddies, playing "paper football" or what have you. COSMIC KABOOM is a simple, fast, fun game of zipping around the galaxy in your space ship collecting resources to power a planet-destroying weapon you can deploy against your opponents in an effort to reap points and win the game. Let's take a look.

To set up, line up the corners as shown above to form the borders of the galaxy. Each player places his planets to set up the map.

The game is very simple to explain and learn. In essence, all you have to do is journey from planet to planet picking up colored resource cubes. You must do this in a certain order, as planets are numbered. One cube of each color is needed to power the super bomb, which you need to blow up enemy planets. To move your ship, just flick it - you can use whatever finger you're most comfortable with. If you flick your ship outside these bounds, it "explodes" and you will lose any resources in your cargo holds. You must decide when to transfer your precious cargo to your space station (each player has one - they form the four corners of the galaxy). Once you have collected one cube of each color, you may on your next turn launch the super bomb - from behind the line of the galactic border (on your corner of the galaxy), throw the bomb disc and try and make it land on one or more of your opponents' planets. NOTE: Do not land it on any of your own planets (evil laugh). It is very challenging to use the bomb effectively! Once seven planets are destroyed (or all three of any single player's planets are destroyed) the game is over, and you each count up the points you scored - check the back side of each planet you blew up and add them up.

Sounds simple you say? But wait, there's more! Advancement cards will help you out in interesting ways, letting you bend the rules of the game to your benefit. You will get them during the game, for example you get one as a consolation if one of your planets blows up. The cards take a simple fun game and make it interesting, because now it's not just about your flicking skill, it's knowing when to best play your cards tactically for success.

Cosmic Kaboom is an enjoyable and quick game for a wide range of ages and skill levels. Players I have introduced to it have had great fun and wanted to play again. Check it out at Minion Games.