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A classic curiosity of mine, this game was first spied while working in a local charity shop. I took a shine to its interesting concept and spend the next hour googling to see if it had all the parts. It was also missing instructions so if you happen upon a copy also missing instructions then i shall help you out in true internet fasion. -Rules- Setting up the game is simple. take your tiles and place them all in the empty spaces that the board has left for you. If you have one tile left over do not fret, this is intended. Next pick a colour piece and place it on the appropriate coloured space. Last bit of the setup, take the cards, shuffle them and place them face down in front of each player in this manner 2 players = 7 cards 3 players = 6 cards 4 players = 5 cards You can only view your cards one at a time and cannot reveal them until your piece lands on the tile with the same item on it. When it is your turn you can move one space and move the labyrinth one space in any order. Arrows on the sides of the board show you which rows can be moved. players move with the labyrinthe and if any players are pushed off the edge they appear on the other side of the board The game ends when one player had revealed all their cards and returned to their starting space. So simple but so much fun. moving the labyrinth gives you many strategic options from furthering your own exploits to delaying the eventual winner. my one gripe with the game is that a fair few of the cards/tiles have very very similar images. this has lead to many a frustrated player in the past. You learn the differences in time but the early games can be frustrating and time consuming for that reason -The parts- The board and tiles are made really well and have happily withstood many years of play. i myself am surprised at how smooth pushing the labyrinth around still is. The cards however are flimsy with a couple in my set being lost to split drinks and the like. The packaging is robust but feels as if it was made for another game with many many more pieces. When i first bought the game i was convinced that there was stuff missing for that reason. -Overall- labyrinth is a brilliant rainy day sort of game. Great for kids and adults alike, although adults will notice they have no age advantage with this game so may be a little weary of playing this with their children ( dont want to be seen losing now do we ) joking aside this is a brilliant, easy to learn game for everyone.
I would just like to start this review by saying that I absolutely love this board game! (And apologies for the title, I couldn't help it). The concept behind it is very simple which means that it is suitable for practically all ages but it's a lot of fun to play. It is a mixture of strategy, random luck and a race to the finish and it is suitable for between 2 to 4 players. At the start of the game, players need to place the 34 labyrinth pieces randomly on the board. Some of the pieces are straight pieces of path, some are corners and others are T-junctions. Due to the random nature of placing them on the board, some will line up nicely and create accessible routes across the labyrinth whereas others will be blocked off and end in dead-ends. There will be one piece left over but fear not! All will be revealed later... There are 4 coloured pieces, one for each player, which need to be placed on the corresponding coloured dot in each corner of the board. The 24 treasure cards then need to be dealt out between the players but there will always be an equal number for everyone whether you are playing with 2, 3 or 4 players. Each card has a picture of an item of treasure on it and the same treasure will appear on a labyrinth piece somewhere on the board. The aim of the game is to land your playing piece of each of the treasures in the labyrinth that you have the card for and to be the first person to get back to your starting position. There are no dice involved in this game so it is traditional for the youngest person to go first and to continue on in a clockwise fashion. When it is you turn you are able to move you piece as far as you want or are able to through the labyrinth, stopping either when you land on one of your pieces of treasure or when you reach a dead end / the edge of the board. On each turn you are also allowed one shift of the labyrinth. This is where that left over labyrinth piece comes in! All you have to do is place the piece against another one on the board and slide the whole row of labyrinth pieces along until another piece falls of the other side of the board. This rearranges the pieces in the labyrinth and changes the routes the players have to use to get through. To make it a little bit more tricky, there are also pieces of the labyrinth that are permanently attached to the board and are not able to be moved. You are able to do this either before moving your counter or after you have done your move, it's up to you. Obviously you either want to make the labyrinth look better for yourself or make things difficult for your opponent! Technically speaking, each player is supposed to select one treasure card at a time to find so that it is completely random and you don't know where the other player is heading. However, a great variation on the rules I like to play for 2 player games, is for both of you too look at all of your cards in advance and come up with a vague plan of the order you want to collect them in. You will know by default which treasure the other player will be hunting as they are the ones on the board you don't have a card for. You can then dedicate your efforts to sabotaging the other player's progress and shoving dead end pieces of labyrinth next to the places you know they are trying to get to, which is a lot of fun! It is particularly amusing when someone's playing piece is on the piece of the labyrinth that gets pushed of the edge of the board as the next player has the power to place them back on anywhere they like! This is also a good kamikaze strategy to get yourself out of a tight spot and hope that you end up somewhere better. In summary, this is a great game which is simple to play and really enjoyable. If I have convinced you to give it a try, it is available £14.99 on Amazon. So if you enjoy board games, this is a great one to add to the collection. I think it's great, 5 dooyoo stars from me!
I first played this game as a teenager, my grandparents have a copy of the first release (German only). I bought my own copy about 5 years ago, and also bought a copy for a friend very recently. So I'm familiar with three different versions of the game, over the course of fiteen years or so. The game works by having a board with little cardboard squares. The squares form a map - each piece has a section of path and some wall on, and together they form a maze. Some of the squares are stuck to the board, the rest you place on, and there's one left over. This, the player uses to change the shape of the map, by pushing a whole row along. On some of the squares is a picture (on every static square is a picture of an object which could not normally move itself - such as keys or a skull - on some of the movable ones is a picture of a creature that could move - such as a mouse or a ghost. This feature is quite useful in game play). Play works that each player has a pile of cards with pictures on, and they have to get their counter to the tile with the same picture, by moving the map and moving their counter along the paths. At the end, you have to get home again. For younger players, you can give fewer cards, or allow them to look at all their cards and decide which one to go to next, so it's fair to play as a family game. I haven't noticed any difference in game play across the versions, although other people have commented on this - perhaps the first English version was different to the original German. The difference now is that the counters representing players are not simple ludo-like pieces, but little statues of wizards. The board remains the same. Over the time we've had the game, it's been played quite a lot, and is still in as good condition as it was when we got it. The pieces and tiles are very sturdy, as is the board. There are no irritating gaps in the box once it's made up, so it doesn't take up more room than it should on the shelf. It's interesting enough for adults to play on their own, and my son hsa been playing it since he was six, with enjoyment. He started off with a headstart, and now he's ten, he plays on equal terms with adults (and wins as often as anyone else). It's a good, long lasting game in terms of enjoyment, and in terms of lasting.
I first got this game in the mid 90s & after reading review it appears it may have changed a little. Anyway, this is about the original version of the game. Packaging: The games comes in a standard game type box with a picture of an adult & two kids playing the game on the front. On opening the box there's a brown plastic "tray" which holds:- + 34 maze cards + 24 treasure cards + 4 wooden playing pieces + I playing board. The game: When you open the board the first thing you notice is that there are 16 fixed, non adjacent, squares on the board. These are all an equal distance apart from each other & are arranged in a 4 x 4 grid formation. The 4 corner squares each have a different coloured circle which corresponds the the colours of the four playing pieces:- blue, green, red & yellow. The remaining 12 squares each have an item on them. These will correspond to half of the items on the 24 treasure cards. + Shuffle the maze cards & lay them out at random on the board between the fixed squares. This creates a maze of chance & may allow you to reach some locations easily whilst others may appear inaccessible. One maze card will be left over. You'll notice that some of the maze cards are "t" junctions, some are straight pieces of maze & some are turns. + Shuffle the treasure cards & deal them out. There are 24 of them so it doesn't matter whether there are 2, 3 or 4 people playing, you will all get the same number of cards. + Select your playing piece & decide who is going to play first. + Look at your first treasure card but don't show it to anyone else. This is the first treasure you have to reach. Take the extra maze card & push it into the maze until one maze card comes out of the other end. The aim of this is either to allow you to move as far as you wish in order to reach your treasure, or to prevent an opponent from reaching their treasure. One you've moved the maze you can then move your playing piece. More than one playing piece can occupy a piece of maze at the same time. + You are not allowed to move your playing piece before you move the maze. + You must move the maze, even if you can reach your treasure without having to do so. + You may not reverse the move made by the previous player. + If you moving the maze pushes either yourself or another player out then the playing piece is moved to onto the piece of maze that you have just inserted into the board. + Once you've reached your treasure lay the card face up so that the other player(s) can see it. Look at the next card in your pile to see what your next piece of treasure is. + Play then passes to the next player. + Once you reached all your treasures you must then get back to your starting position. The game is recommended from age 8 - adult. There are a couple of variations that you can play if younger children are taking part in the game:- + Allow the younger children to view all of their treasure cards & select the order in which they'd like to reach them. + Allow the younger children to end the game when they reach their last treasure rather than having to return to the starting space. The Verdict: I've always liked this game ever since I bought it. There's an element of luck to it but also an element on strategy. You need to create a maze path that will alow you to reach your goal whilst keeping your opponents from reaching theirs. This is particularly important towards the end of the game when there are few treasures left to find, or when people are trying to get back to their starting points. You don't only need to think about the part of the maze you are moving & how you position the maze piece you are moving onto the board, you also need to think about the spare piece of maze that will become free & will pass to the next player. Obviously passing a "t" junction piece to the next player is a lot more useful to them than a bend is. The game will allow children to develop an awareness of strategy as they'll learn that their actions not only have an impact on their own progress in the game but that they also have an effect on what the next player is able to do. Gameplay can last upto 30 minutes so it's a reasonably paced game that isn't over as quickly as something like "Guess Who" but doesn't last for hours like "Monopoly". All in all, it's an easy game, without complicated rules, that requires the players to put some thought into precisely what move they're going to make. At time of writing Labryinth is available from Amazon from £14.99
This is a very original game, which requires a great deal of thought when playing. I have a re release of this game, and although it looks exactly the same as the picture, it seems apparent that they have changed the winning conditions since the way I play is different to the description. The most important thing to understanding how this game works is understanding how the board works. The board has 16 fixed squares on it with the rest of the squares made up by tiles that are free to move. Each square/tile has a path on it, which can run in different directions, for example it could be a bend, a straight path or a t-junction. When all the squares are on the board then there is a labyrinth formed with lots of paths and dead ends alike. Onto each square is put a numbered tile, these run from 1-20 and then there is a 25 tile. All players compete to collect these tiles, which must be collected in numerical order. This is where the beauty of the game comes in- on your turn, you get to alter the maze by pushing the one spare tile along a file- thus pushing out a tile at the other end of the board. This requires a lot of visualisation to work out what new paths are going to be formed and whether they will help you. I personally find that a lot of satisfaction can be got from really thinking about smart moves, especially moves that stop oppenents getting a tile if you cannot get it youself. All in all, this is a fantastic game which requires a lot of thought, but has enough luck in it to allow younger players to have a chance of winning without having to think very hard. A fantastic game.
Little Brother was stretched out on the sofa, he's over 6ft and his legs blocked my path to the washing machine. I was stopped in my tracks by the unnatural and unusual state of things. "Why is the telly off?" I asked accusingly "And why are you... reading?" He replied that yes, he was reading. But it was the Sun and only to look up something that was going to be on telly. I turned to The Boyfriend who was propping up the doorway and adjusting his baseball cap. "You should follow his example and do something that doesn't involve staring at a screen." How to facilitate this was a bit of a mystery, but an hour later we were in Help The Aged, looking at board games. When I was a kid, I remember seeing the game Labyrinth at my friend's house. It sat there among the cigarette smoke from her dad and their scary leather sofas, with a tantalising box featuring a dungeons and dragons style castle exterior, treasure and a maze. I was never allowed to play it because 1) she didn't like it and 2) her dad didn't like us being in the house much. Here was my chance for a go and picking it up for £1.49, we dashed home in the rain to play it with a cup of tea. It consists of 30 something little tiles of pathway, which you slot onto the board at random with one left over. You can use this leftover one to move the maze on your turn, opening and closing pathways and walling each other in. With the moveable element, no dice, no counting and the ability to move as far as you like each time (as long as there's no wall blocking you) this is a long way removed from other board games. The 'treasure' cards are divided between the players, each of you hunting for items pictured on the board; a skull, a set of keys, a witch and lots more. The instructions suggest that you keep your current treasure card to yourself so that the other player has to try and work out where you're headed. For small children, you can allow them to look at all their cards at once to work out a route and make the game a bit easier. If, like us you like a challenge, you can have that card on show and turn this into a fiendish game of wits as you block each other at every turn. I love nearly everything about this game. The board is colourful and magical, the rules are clear and easy to follow and the game itself is fun. The only disappointment with it is the playing pieces. These are just wooden pegs painted in primary colours and crying out to be made over into brightly painted witches, wizards or goblins. Sat on the floor to be as near the heat from the radiator as possible, we played two games in a row. Chasing around the maze after the treasure, we promised ourselves that we would get this out at Christmas and play it again with little nephew, this is the kind of game that fits on the table and would be straightforward enough for everyone to enjoy. With a playing time of 20 minutes, it doesn't drag on too long (unlike Monopoly), it has no complicated scoring (forget Scrabble) and takes seconds to set up (Game of Life goes to the back of the pile). We're no board game geeks, but with our own twist of having the cards on show, every move became as considered as chess. I'm looking forward to playing it with the maximum of four people. The version we bought was the 1992 set, but the same game has been re-released in a red and yellow cartoon style box, which focuses more heavily on the maze. This can be picked up on Amazon for £14.99 (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00000J0JF/ref=nosim/coffeeuk49709-21) or both versions can be found on ebay. I've also spotted a Junior version, Master version (where you play against guardians and dragons), 3D version and themed versions - http://www.boardgamegeek.com/wiki/page/Ravensburger_Labyrinth_Games is worth a look.
***Background*** Ravensburger were always more known to me for Jigsaw Puzzles before I saw this game about 8 years ago when I bought it as a Christmas present for my daughter. She loved puzzle type games and as the jigsaws that we already owned were good quality I decided to give this game a go even though I hadn't heard of it before. It originally came out in 1992 and this version is no longer available in the shops although you can still pick it up from Ebay. Don't worry though as this review is still relevant as all that has changed in the new version is the packaging and the name. It's now known as The aMAZEing Labyrinth. There are also Disney, Lord Of The Rings and 3D versions out there too. Ravensburger are a German based company that was founded in 1925 by Otto Robert Maier. In the early days they were better known as book publishers but gradually they expanded into the world of jigsaws and board games and are still a family run business today. ***The Aim Of The Game*** To win this game you have to find all the treasures hidden around the moving Labyrinth before your opponents. It's that simple or is it? ***What's In The Box*** A small easy to read set of instructions with cute diagrams. A 15" square playing board that folds in half for easy storage. The board has 16 fixed tiles on it that make up part of the maze. Twelve of these tiles have treasure items on them and the other four have coloured dots on. These red, green, yellow and blue circles correspond to the coloured playing pieces and are the starting points for each. 12 maze tiles with treasure pictures on them 22 maze tiles that just have pathways on them. 24 treasure cards that correspond to the pictures on the tiles. 4 wooden coloured playing pieces. ***The Rules*** Before starting the game everyone helps to place the loose tiles on the board. This makes up a 7 x 7 board but for those of you counting up the amount of tiles you will realise that there is one left over. Set this aside for now until start of play. Deal out the cards evenly face down. As there are 24 it doesn't matter if there are 2, 3 or 4 players as they cleverly devise perfectly. As there is no dice in this game you'll have to find another way to decide who goes first. We usually start with the youngest player for the first game and then work clockwise for following games. The game board will look like a maze of passageways but as in a real maze some pathways will be blocked. Don't worry as this changes as you play the game. The first player looks at the top treasure card and places it back so his opponents cannot see it. He then has to try and make his way to the corresponding treasure spot on the board. Before moving though he has to take the extra piece of the maze and slide it in to move one of the six vertical or horizontal lines that have no fixed tiles. This obviously pushes another tile out and this is given to the next player. Care should be taken to try and move the walls so that you can get nearer your treasure. After moving the tiles you can move your piece to wherever you want to go. Preferably on the treasure you are seeking. If you can collect your treasure then you turn your card over to let the other players see that you have reached your goal and play moves to the next person. When you have found all the treasure on your cards then you have to return to your own coloured square before being declared the winner. Sounds simple but there are a few more points to remember when playing. If you don't need to move the walls to get to your treasure then try to wall in another player to make it harder for them, although you do not know which treasure they are actually looking for. You cannot immediately reverse the last player's move by putting the tile back where it came from. If you push a player out because they are sitting on a tile at the edge of the board then they move to the tile that has just been placed onto the board. Watch out for this one as it can sometimes get you nearer your goal or block one of your opponents. ***Variations*** If there are younger children playing then they can be given an advantage by being allowed to look at all their treasure cards and reach them in any order. ***My Thoughts*** We've played this game many times over the years and it still holds its appeal. As my two girls have gotten older this has turned into a more tactical game as we try to guess what treasure each player is trying to get to and we pay more attention to blocking each other - especially when it comes to stopping the player getting back to his own coloured square at the end of the game. The board is very sturdy as are the movable tiles and despite many hours of play this game is still looking like new. The treasure on the cards to be found, range from a bag of gold coins and a scarab brooch to slightly more sinister items, like a skull and a witch. There are a couple of the items that are similar looking so it has been known for someone to land on a square of treasure only to realise it's the wrong one. The game itself is great if you are into puzzles and is more fun if there are four players as the walls shift more often before your next turn, and it's a bit more difficult than just with two people. The timescale varies each time but I would say that 20 minutes is about the longest we have taken to play it with four players. It is about the same with less players too as you have more treasure items to find. The rules are easy to get the hang of and the game is marketed for aged 8 and up but as previously stated, younger players may manage this by playing the other version. One thing that would have been nice to see in this game would have been actual bits of treasure to hand out but then that would have meant more pieces that could have been lost. ***Price and Availability*** As I mentioned earlier this early version is only available from the likes of Ebay but the updated version is on sale at Amazon for £15. Special edition versions will of course cost a little bit more.