Saturday, May 25, 2013

Game Review: Phase 10 Dice

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Fast and fun in any size group
Cons: None
The Bottom Line:
The Phase 10 challenge
But this version is faster
Fun for all ages

The Faster Way to Play Phase 10 Without Losing Any of the Fun

I enjoy the card game Phase 10, but I do find its length a bit frustrating.  That's why I enjoy playing Phase 10 Dice so much.  The concept is the same, only it's designed to take a lot less time to play.  Plus, you can play with a group of any size.  Heck, they even give you ideas on how to play by yourself.

Inside the tin you get when you buy the game, you'll find instructions, score pads (although you can create your own), and 10 dice.  Four dice contain the numbers 1-4 and two wild spots while the other six dice contain the numbers 5-10.

Just like in the original Phase 10, the object is to roll ten previously created phases in order.  For each phase, you need to roll a number of sets (3 of the same number), a run (4-7 for example), or some combination of the two.  The further along you go, the harder it is to complete your phase.  You have three rolls per turn to get your phase.  If you get it, you record a score based on the dice used to complete the phase.  If you miss, you have to work on that phase on your next turn.

As another twist on the card game, the objective here is to get the highest final score you can (instead of a low score in the original).  Once one player completes phase 10, everyone gets one last turn to complete as many phases as they can.  Only after everyone has taken that last turn do you compare scores.  The overall high score wins.

Because there are only 10 dice in the game, some of the later phases where you need 8 or 9 get really tricky.  Additionally, there is a strategy involved in picking the dice so that you can potentially roll what you need before your turn is over.  I like that twist.

I have played the card version of Phase 10 in a very large group for two hours and not had anyone come close to winning.  I have played this game in a large group and completed it in an hour.  While it is hard to get all 10 phases in your first 10 turns, it is fairly easy to complete them in 15 turns or so.  Even if you get stuck on one phase, you will probably only be there for three turns at most, so it's pretty hard to lose interest in the game.

As they point out in the rules, you can keep track of your score and therefore play by yourself trying to get the best score you can.  They even give you advise on how to incorporate the bonuses of the game into your solo game play.

Phase 10 Dice takes a good game and gives it a twist that makes it great.  If you like the card version, give this one a try.  You'll soon find it a hit with groups of any size.

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