Formula D is yet another game that we bought in our big 2009 game buying spree. The game sounded fun, and we did not have any kind of racing game at the time. So is this an all time favorite or does this game crash into the wall.
Formula D is played on a rather large board that represents a track, and this track is divided into hundreds of spaces. On a player's turn they first face a choice. They may shift gears up or down one (or leave it where it is at), and they then role a die. The die rolled depends upon the gear a player is in. For example, if a player is in gear 2, it rolls the orange D6 and if it is in gear 3 it rolls a red D8. These dice are custom so the orange D-6 only has numbers 2-4 on it. There are six total gears. After a player rolls they move. Movement must be logical, meaning a player can not swerve all over the place. Each turn on the track has a number associated with it. This number is how many times a player needs to stop in the turn. A small turn might require one stop, where a large turn might require 2 or 3 stops. Failing to stop the required times leads to damage. Along with over shooting a turn players can get damage from having to downshift too fast, bumping other cars, slamming the breaks, and overworking the engine.
There are several ways to play. In the basic game, a player's car can sustain 18 points of damage before being destroyed. In the advance game, players also have 18 points, but they are divided up among various places. This means a player can only take so many points of damage to their frame, brakes, etc. Along with Formula-1 road courses, there are also street races. In the street races each racer is unique with a special ability. The first player to cross the finish line is the winner.
The Game We Played
It had been several months since we had played Formula D, so instead of looking up some of the advance rules we played the basic game. In the basic game we have a house rule, that if a car overshoots a turn by more than five spaces then it is automatically wrecked. We each controlled two cars, and played on the Sebring track. This is an expansion track, and I really dislike it. Every time I have played this track, one car runs away with it, and that is exactly what happened. I started on the pole position, and in the fourth position. Going into the first turn, my wife passed me and never looked back. By the exit of the second turn our front two cars pulled away from the back two. This gap just got bigger. My fourth place car also passed my wife's third place car coming out of this same turn, and for this order did not change.
My Rating: 3 (it's OK)
My Thoughts: My thoughts on this game might be colored slightly by our rather boring play, but this game is just OK. I am done playing the basic game, it is just to boring and not interesting enough. The advance game offers a lot more interesting choices. In the end though, it comes down to rolls of the dice.
Her Rating: 3.5 (it's OK)
Her Thoughts: Rolling dice is always fun. I think the basic game is kind of boring, but the advance game can be really tough. Compared to other racing games I like this more than Arena Maximus but less than Detroit-Cleveland Grand Prix.
Combined Rating: 6.5
As a game for just my wife and I we will play this some, but I am not sure if we would play it enough to justify keeping it. However, we are in agreement that this game has great potential to be an excellent family game for when our son gets a little older. For that reason, this will be a game we hold on to.