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Subject: Deflexion vs. Laser Battle rss

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Peter Loop
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If your are a fan of abstracts especially connection games, which these both are, I don’t think you will go wrong with either pick.

Both Games are derivative of earlier computer games. The Deflexion story of a couple of college guys and their game is very compelling vs. the corporate brains behind “Bratz”. But I’m not touching the IP issue arrrh, I’m only going to look at the games side but side, feature by feature.

It is remarkable that both games have the same basic rules:
1) Move or rotate a piece.
2) Fire the laser

But there are substantial differences I’ll get into - major rules Differences:

Movement: In Laser Battle you move from any spot on the board to any other spot (and rotate to any angle), in Deflexion you only move to the adjacent square. – Laser Battle is a much more fluid game as a result.

Rotate: In Deflexion you have 4 orientations and can only rotate 90 degrees, in Laser Battle there are 16 different angles and you can rotate to any of them.



Attack/Strike: in Deflexion any piece you hit on a non-mirrored side is removed, even your own. In Laser battle only your opponent’s piece is removed (advance rules). This is a very important tactic in Deflexion - setting up an opponent to hit them selves, or threaten to.

Firing the laser: In Deflexion it is a “must do” and the end of each turn, in Laser Battle it is optional. In Laser Battle there is no bad outcomes from firing the laser, so you would only not fire to keep information hidden.

The games: Deflexion vs. Laser Battle Side by Side



MSRP Price: Deflexion $39.95, Laser Battle $29.99
- Advantage Laser Battle

Web Support: Deflexion extensive, Laser Battle none – not even on MGAE web page (yet)
– Advantage Deflexion

The Boards:
Deflexion: 14in x 18in, 8x10 grid with rows 1 & 10 home rows the opponent can not enter. Square indentations to hold pieces in 4 orientations. The board is very solid and houses the 2 lasers.

Laser Battle: 16in x 16in board, 10x10 gird, with 3 holes cut off each corner so the board is a octagon. While not as solid as the Deflexion board, is well made with grid lines every 45 degrees. The laser is a movable piece so it is not fixed to the board. The board is made up of circular holes that allow 16 different (every 22.5 degrees) orientations of the pieces. The home row is achieved with plugs that cover the holes in front of the laser and target keeping any piece from entering. The Laser Battle board is made up of four sections that can be locked together in many different configurations, you can even combine more than one set to make up a bigger playing field. The locking mechanism works very well, I can pick up a board with out worry of it coming apart.

- Advantage Laser Battle For Configurability

The pieces: Deflexion Gold & Grey vs. Orange & Mustard in Laser Battle



The one sided mirror: Deflexion the Pyramid (x 6 per side) vs. The Strike Mirror (x6). The pieces are both about 2.5 inches tall (above the board) and about the same weight. Deflexion Pyramid has a larger better mirror, but the small circular mirror in Laser Battle is functional. The Laser Battle pieces are easy to handle with a pick up tab on the top. Note Laser Battle includes a set up “caps” to attach to the pieces so you can combine 2 sets and make 4 different sets on pieces – a thoughtful addition. The Laser Battle pieces fit in the boards in any of 16 different angles (every 22.5 degrees) the Deflexion pieces only fit in 4 angles (90 degrees).

-Toss-up the pieces are functionally identical.

The 2 sided mirrors: The Djed (x2) in Deflexion – no equivalent in Laser Battle – This is a big difference

The Blocker: The Obelisk(x2) in D – No Equivalent in Laser Battle, But the Obelisk is kind of a worthless piece in Deflexion anyway.

The Target: The Pharaoh (x1) in Deflexion vs. the Target tower (x1) in Laser Battle. Here is a case of powered (x3 AA batteries) vs. un-powered. The Target tower in Laser Battle goes bang when you hit it, but also when you change the light , move it, or at times just because. This is annoying but not impactful on game play – I just turn it off and and check visually just like Deflexion, but it is my son's favorite feature. The target in Laser Battle has a 130 degree target arc, vs. a direct hit in Deflexion. It Laser Battle the target tower is fixed; in Deflexion the Pharaoh is a moveable piece.

- Toss-up again, sound vs. movement (a fixed laser of Deflexion with a movable target or a fixed target (can be set up in different starting points) and rotating laser in Laser Battle )



The Laser gun: (x1) in both – Fixed on the board in Deflexion vs. rotating but not moving in Laser Battle. The optics in Deflexion is better, but the laser in Laser Battle comes with easy to access calibration dials in address up/down left right. Neither game is perfect here, don’t expect it - A slightly askew piece will mess up the laser beam (and unlike the box pictures of both you don’t see the laser in flight - Yes there is a disclaimer on both games boxes). But with both games you can go several mirrors with no problem. The calibration is more of an issue in Laser Battle with its many more angles, but I think both do an OK job, with an edge to Deflexion. Also Deflexion use 2 AA batteries vs. 3 LR44’s in Laser Battle
-Toss up again rotation vs. better optics

Rules book: Advantage Deflexion. Both have good descriptions of the game with many pictures,and variant setups. But the Deflexion rule book is in color.

Packaging: Big Advantage Deflexion. What was MGAE thinking? yuk The Stealthy box looks cool on the self, but is not of any use for storing the game after it is taken out of the box. This may be a deal breaker for some.


Bottle line, think both are interesting games and play very differently. Deflexion is slower developing, with many different pieces – more chess-like. Laser Battle, is faster and more fluid, with attacks coming from every angle and at any time. Laser battle is the simpler of the two to teach. Deflexion is better built, but Laser battle is not poorly made, and the option to combine sets, or change board layouts is a plus.


The laser got you

Additional comments:

One advantage of Deflexion I didn't mention was that Deflexion has a border around the board so that the laser can not escape the playing field, there is no border on laser battle (due to modular board) so sometimes you have no idea were the laser went off to, if you don't pay attention.

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This is exactly the type of comparison I was hoping someone would write. Thanks !
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Nice review/comparison!

If I didn't have either, it would be a tough choice. I already have Deflexion, though, and I don't see enough in Laser Battle to warrent a second laser abstract game purchase.
 
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Skip Maloney
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As long as someone has introduced the topic, it should be noted that Deflexion will officially change its name to KHET, sometime this week, I believe. Original editions of the game will become 'collector items' as the new package/design hits the streets. There was apparently some 'copyright' issue in regards to the name and rather than become involved in what looked to be a long, legal battle, designers opted for the name change.
 
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Luke Hooper
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I wanted to take this opportunity to briefly comment on the game since many people are wondering if this is a ripoff of Deflexion. We orignally showed our prototypes of Deflexion back in February of 2005 at the american toy fair where it gathered a good amount of interest from small retailers and of course plenty of inventors who are always there sketching out notes. Due to manufacturing delays our game was not launched until November of 2005. At this years toy fair in February (our 2nd one, one year later) we were fortunate enough to talk to buyers from Target and ToysRus who said they liked our game but already purchased a nearly identical game from MGA that was not being shown publically in the private meetings that the big boys set up.

While friendly competition is expected in any industry, it is extremely tough when a big company comes out in a suspicious manner with a very similar product to try and push out a smaller group trying to break in. We will let the gaming industry decide for itself on the enjoyment of the two games and continue to push forward with several developments coming soon with Deflexion as hinted at in an earlier post that we will be annoucing this week.

Luke Hooper
Deflexion
Innovention Toys
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Ben Smith
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Laser Battle looks too much like a cross between Ludo and Hungry Hungry Hippos for my liking
 
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Ron Butcher
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Hello,
Does anyone know how well Laser Battle works for multiple players. I have 6-8 players in mind and don't want to spend the cash for four sets until I check it out.
 
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Kieron Mitchell
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Thanks for the review - nicely detailed comparison.
 
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Ryan Bielar
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Where do you buy Laser Battle? I have looked in stores and online.

Thanks.
 
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Scott Nelson
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Since the game laser battle is at Walmart stores, just wait till after Christmas and buy it when it fails to sell and goes on clearance for 10 bucks
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Alexander E. Stevens
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Great review. I've been interested in the laser-game concept since I first saw deflexion at www.thinkgeek.com. I have to say, though, I now think I'd probably prefer laser battle for its simplicity/fewer restrictions. As you said, a more fluid game.


Just one thing

Peter Loop wrote:
Laser Battle: 16in x 16in board, 10x10 gird, with 3 holes cut off each corner so the board is a hexagon.

The board is an Octagon =)
 
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Teacher Fletcher
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Thanks so much for that comparison. I just saw Laser Battle in stores and was wondering what the deal was... whether these were two separate games or whether a game company had bought the rights to Khet.

I'm not sure which of these games I'd purchase, but am considering both.

It's a BIG disappointment that these lasers aren't visible in flight! I did not know that. Somebody has photographs on th Khet page that shows visible lasers, although it looks as if he's done that by having smoke flow over the board.

If one of these games had visible lasers in flight I would DEFINITELY purchase it. Not sure though, now.

Any thoughts as to why the lasers aren't made visible in flight? Is that dangerous?
 
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Caleb Parnell-Lampen
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Quote:
Any thoughts as to why the lasers aren't made visible in flight? Is that dangerous?

Laser light travels in a straight line by design. Your eye only sees light that enters it. Thus, the laser light in the game will not be seen because its bouncing along on the board. It never hits your eye (and if it did, directly enter your eye it would damage it!).

So the only way to "see" a laser is to use some kind of scattering substance, like smoke, which will randomly deflect bits of the laser light in all directions off from the main path. This makes the path of the laser act effectively like a diffuse light source, like a light-bulb.

In other words, the game designers aren't being cheep. Lasers are by definition "invisible".
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John Sheppard
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Having read this review after purchasing the game, there are a couple of things I'd like to say in response:

1. My set came in the colors black and silver, not orange and mustard.

2. It needs to be reitterated that the packaging is not meant to keep. Once you have the game out of the box, it won't really go back in. You'll need a baggie or two to keep parts and pieces in.

3. Since my set seems to be slightly different in some ways than the set used by the original reviewer, I have to say that while the precision of the laser across several mirrors is key, Deflexions pieces sit rather loose in the grid spaces on the board (detracting from the precision) while the Laser Battle pieces fit into the board like a peg into a hole, with a notch to keep proper alignment. In my opinion Laser Battle is much better than Deflexion in this regard. It should be noted that I have not played Khet (the newly released/renamed Deflexion) yet, and they may have addressed this with the new release.

4. While it is true that the lasers in Laser Battle use less common batteries, the button to fire the laser acts like a momentary switch...which I guess it is...it's just that the 'moment' is 2-3 seconds. After that the laser turns off and you have to press the button again. The advantage is that if the button gets pressed in whatever container you decide to store the pieces in, it won't run the batteries down. There is a disadvantage to this short time of firing though...if you find you need to calibrate the laser (using the dials on the laser - a nice feature), you have to push the fire button repeatedly, which makes the calibration just a bit more difficult.
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Jake Kiser
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104 gg tip???? What?
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Utah BGGer
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jammasterjake wrote:
104 gg tip???? What?

Yeah, I just looked at that too, and 103 GG of it was to himself.
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Justin Redmon
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utahBGG wrote:
jammasterjake wrote:
104 gg tip???? What?

Yeah, I just looked at that too, and 103 GG of it was to himself.

HA HA HA! What?! laugh
 
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