It seems to me to be a mix of Zombie Dice (I am sad I only have zombies and not Mars) and Quarriors (deckbuilding with dice) and whatever race-du-jour I do no longer have in my collection.
We just played Space Base again and despite not winning my partner enjoyed it and repeated “Buy cubitos now” which I just did… price already went up a few euros because it’s one of those algorithmic things where it gets more expensive the fewer copies they have. I’ve noticed that before about thalia.
I hope we’ll both find something to like–I am in it for the variable setup, he likes dice. We both like deck building. If the dice are any good I am probably going to like it. If they are as flimsy as those that came with Quarriors, it will not stay.
From Tom’s review they appeared to be similar to the dice AEG used in the Shy Pluto expansion. These were smaller dice, but really nice quality and awesome for chucking handfuls, so hopefully that’s the case here. They aren’t especially weighty but they do have enough heft to feel good.
I’ve already got the tracking number for the copy I ordered last night, I hope they’re as fast with your order and we can both enjoy the game sometime mid-next-week.
A couple of the SUSD comments call out the Quarriors connection as well. In firm agreement with you, one of them says:
Thinking about the racing game and cubitos. What is a racing game? On an aesthetic level is it simply about going around a track or is it worth removing that distinction in the same way worker placement is the same as action selection?
The thing that makes it hard to feel like a racing game is that I feel like cubitos feels like no race in real life. I don’t think there’s any race in history or sports where there might be a genuine advantage in charging up and waiting around before trying to catch up or zoom out with a more Efficient surge at the end. Does usain bolt run around the start line and then use that to boost past everyone?!
The thing it’s a bit closer to in terms of “racing” is something like formula one but only if you count the pre race preparations (making the engine for example) as part of the race.
The latest NPI podcast is… not enthusiastic about this. (But they also aren’t comparing it with Automobiles. Darn, maybe I should write a review of my own!)
It sounded like they only played one game though.
I think some of their criticism is slightly fair (doing nothing is bad) but I’ve had games where busting (made me feel good) was part of the overall strategy and increasing hand size can be huge. It seemed like a very aggressive reaction to a mild game.
Some of that may be because of the raves from Tom and Tom – I know that if I have high expectations for a game I’m harsher on it if it lets me down.
They should have read space biff!