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Subject: Worming its way into my Heart! rss

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JP Decosse
Canada
Dartmouth
Nova Scotia
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Okay, cheese subject aside, this little game is really beginning to leave its mark on myself, and those with whom I play.

The components are ridiculously simple and compact, consisting of five sets of seven halved wooden globes, five sets of five matching cardboard counters, four black wooden goal posts, and a cardboard finish line. Without exaggeration, you could carry this game in a shirt pocket, with room to spare.

Obviously, with such tiny pieces, set-up is a piece of cake. Two of the goal posts are inserted into punched holes in the finish line. The other two goal posts are set up a set distance away from the finish line (the rules suggest about three feet), with the worms prepared in straight lines between the starting posts. Each player takes the cardboard counters, matching the colour of their worm, and voila! You're ready to play Worm Up!

Gameplay is criminally easy to explain and execute, taking no more than a couple minutes, even for a lesser sharpened pencil. Each player chooses one of their counters in secret (numbered 4, 5, 6, 7, and X), and once all are ready, the counters are revealed simultaneously. Any matching digits do not move this turn, and return their counter back into their hand, joining the other four. Each unique digit then moves their worm pieces from the back of their worm to the front (or vice versa, if need be), equal to their selected number, starting from the lowest number, and ascending. Weaving around and cutting off other players is not only encouraged, but expected, sometimes forcing other players to wiggle their worm in reverse, since no worm movement can come into direct contact with another worm piece.

A player who successfully bids an "X" gets two actions. First, they may move their worm by any number (4, 5, 6, 7) that was not selected by any player that turn (including those who bid duplicates, thus not moving). The only instance in which a player choosing the "X" tile could not move, is in a five player game, where everyone bids a unique digit. The second action available to the lucky bidder of the "X" tile, is to rotate one of the two finish line posts. The player simply places a finger on one post, while pushing the other post, to adjust the finish line to whatever angle pleases them.

The first player to have one of their worm pieces touch any part of the finish line wins the game!

Playing the game is quick, never even having a hair of a chance to wear out its welcome. A typical game, including set-up and explanation, will likely not exceed 20 minutes.

It's positively dripping with fun, as even a player seemingly out of the race, can still meddle with others, or even catch up and steal the win! Guessing what other players might bid, while seemingly fruitless, is still plenty of fun, and always results in laughter and trash talking.

Worm Up! is the perfect way to warm up your fellow gamers for something a little meatier, to kill some time while waiting for the last player to arrive, or just to get some chuckles rolling on a lunch break. I can't recommend the game high enough, and encourage you to track it down and add it to your collection!


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Alex Martinez
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Irving
Texas
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Okay, you've intrigued me. It reminds me a bit of Technowitches in description, a game I also enjoy.

One question: Would the game work well with just 2? Probably not, I'm thinking, but still might be worth trying for a fun slot on my game shelf.

 
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Matt Dodor
United States
St. Paul
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Thanks for the review! Another interesting game involving simultaneous bidding you should check out is Raj.
 
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JP Decosse
Canada
Dartmouth
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KingCroc wrote:
One question: Would the game work well with just 2? Probably not, I'm thinking, but still might be worth trying for a fun slot on my game shelf.


Well, I suppose you can try it with two, but I can't imagine it being much fun, as either both players would both be moving, or not moving. Perhaps, if you used a third worm, and had each player randomly draw one of those worm's counters - whoever draws the lower number gets to move the extra worm that many spaces, allowing for some screwage and such. Might be fun to give a whirl! I'll give it a try soon and post a little report on how it turns out.
 
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skrebs
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Davis
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operamang wrote:
KingCroc wrote:
One question: Would the game work well with just 2? Probably not, I'm thinking, but still might be worth trying for a fun slot on my game shelf.


Well, I suppose you can try it with two, but I can't imagine it being much fun, as either both players would both be moving, or not moving. Perhaps, if you used a third worm, and had each player randomly draw one of those worm's counters - whoever draws the lower number gets to move the extra worm that many spaces, allowing for some screwage and such. Might be fun to give a whirl! I'll give it a try soon and post a little report on how it turns out.


That's exactly what my wife and I did this morning. It really highlighted the different ways we play games... I sent the "robot worm" directly in her path trying to mess with her. She, in turn, won the game! It was fun.

Regarding the components: I can't understand why the game didn't come with little "euro-sized" cards. Those tiny little chits are pretty crappy. But it's a fun game. Hope to get my five year old to play it soon.
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