And here I brought you a board game about space flights

    Already a little old ship. The crew has two people and an alien.

    Phew A week ago, we promised everyone a pleasant surprise for Cosmonautics Day - and today, in a huge hurry, they still delivered warm boxes of the Galaxy Trucker board game (or “Space Truckers” in the localized version) to the shops.

    In general, today I want to show you one of the funniest geeky gizmos I've seen in the last couple of years. And congratulations on the holiday.

    First you must get used to the idea that all the spacecraft of the future will be built from parts of the sewer. Why? Because there was a corporation that earned only by supplying parts for household engineering networks to distant planets. The difference in technological levels made it possible to make good money on this, and at the same time not much harm the balance of power in the galaxy. For several centuries, all the nearest systems were provided with sewage and engineering systems by 100%, so I had to fly further and further. As a result, flights have become quite dangerous, and the profit is not so big. The corporation was on the verge of bankruptcy.

    Game Box and Components

    The solution was extremely simple: modern cargo was so versatile and modular that it became possible to use them as systems for the construction of spacecraft. For example, sewage pumps quickly turned into engines after connecting a pair of devices, sediment tanks into holds for dangerous goods and so on. It remains only to hang weapons and shields on the ship - and it will be completely ready.

    True, you need a pilot. A solution was also found - just call the crazy space "homeless", ready for anything for profit. Allow them to assemble the ship, send them to the edge of the galaxy - and allow them to trade parts of the ship after landing, and then return back on a regular passenger flight.

    You play as one of such bold characters, ready for great risks for the sake of becoming a millionaire.

    How to assemble a ship


    The game begins with a huge pile of inverted spare parts on the table in front of you, plus there is a ship plan on which you can install the modules. You take any module from the heap, look at it and decide whether to plan or not. Each module has up to four sides with connectors, and there are three different types of connectors. It turns out that you need to not only select more or less suitable things, but also fit them into the architecture of the ship, building a kind of network. For example, if you want to stick the engine in the bottom of the ship, and the connector is only on the side, and not on top, you have to stick another module next to it with the connector on top and side, otherwise there will be nothing to join.

    This is what a small ship, half assembled, looks like. There are already three engines, two cabs and a gun. To the cab on the left you can connect another module from above and from the side.

    The ship is being assembled on time - on the one hand you are being pushed by other players, and on the other - a timer that does not allow the latter to think over the circuit perfectly.

    As a result, all players get vessels that can already lose at the start immediately in a section with important modules.

    There are several types of modules:
    • Guns protect against meteorites and help against pirates.
    • Engines determine speed and help you out of difficult situations.
    • Cabins are needed for the crew.
    • Holds - for valuable cargo.
    • Plus there are a bunch of special modules like shields, power units, alien life support systems, sewer hubs with universal connectors and so on.


    In the first round, a small ship is assembled, then it is more complicated and in the end it is the largest. The larger the ship, the farther the flight, so the third flight, respectively, will be the most dangerous.

    After some training, it is possible to assemble a ship that is able to take off and even more or less tolerably feel in space. Yes, it is strangely connected, yes, the bare connectors of several blocks are looking into space, the engine fell off below - but most importantly, you fly!

    Star map on which the position of the ship is marked. Cubes - to determine the impact of asteroids.

    This is where the second part of the game begins. You begin to reveal flight charts. For example, such things may come across:
    • Deep space . It is important to accelerate to the maximum - the number of working engines of your structures is compared.
    • Planets : you can land (and linger for a couple of days), but then pick up valuable cargo.
    • Abandoned ship or space station : they can be privatized due to delay and landing.
    • Pirates : you can enter into battle with them or voluntarily-forcibly give away the goods.
    • Asteroid fields : small asteroids will bounce off the walls of the modules, but break the modules if they fall into an open connector (sticking out into space). And the big ones will simply smash any module if you don't shoot them from the gun.
    • Cosmic dust fields : this is a competition for practicality of assembly: the fewer bare connectors sticking out into space, the faster your ship moves.

    Training Flight Cards. Look at the map of hostilities - the conditions on it are very clear: those who have the least guns, lose 4 days, who have the least engines - will be robbed, with the smallest crew - fired.

    The result is a very interesting balance: it turns out that each time you make decisions about the value of different game actions. For example, if you find an abandoned ship, you can transfer a part of the crew to it - and then in personnel checks, you will most likely lose (for example, you will not be able to rob a space station). But you will receive cash for the prize, and at the same time, do not give it back to those who fly after you. Or, for example, a planet where you can land and pick up goods. Or maybe it’s better to fly past her and get the first to the final of the trip, for what is the reward? Plus constant questions about whether or not to waste battery energy on boards and amplified modules. For example, is it worth it to spend power on engines now in a race, when then the same energy can be useful in guns when meeting with pirates?

    In general, the balance is very, very thought out. The only thing that can be embarrassing is just assembling the ship at speed, where the player who has more experience in flying will certainly get an advantage. However, after 2-3 flights this advantage is leveled, because the game has a very well-thought-out test flight system.


    So that it was not exactly a topic of PR of a space game that I really liked, I’ll tell you about a few interesting things from it. Perhaps it was they who influenced the number of awards that Galaxy Trucker was awarded in the west.

    Firstly, from a particularly pleasant experience - this game has a very cool learning system. All board games are complex, and everyone needs to understand the rules. The “Space Truckers” has a very nice interface, immediately by looking at the chips making it clear what they are doing, a very transparent and logical system of connectors and many other little things that allow you not to load your head with a bunch of rules, but just look at the ship’s plan and understand everything. But most importantly, this is the first test flight, which consists of only 8 turns (15-20 minutes), but is designed to bring maximum fun and at the same time introduce players to almost all space threats and how to plan the ship in accordance with them .

    Secondly, the balance. It is magical here, and in particular because of the system of several flights, where each time the rate is higher and higher. I remind you that you are returning back on a passenger liner, which means that everyone needs to build new ships from scratch. That is, to build at least the same ship will not work. There is also a change in the cost of the module - for example, with the growth of the size of the ship, universal hubs begin to become scarce and the modules for alien life become especially useful.

    Thirdly, art and atmosphere in general . Something subtly reminiscent of the old console games, and it looks very cool. Healthy easy humor during the story is also very pleasing.

    Components. Green lollipops really can’t be eaten - these are battery markers.

    Rules. Remember, only one alien is important!

    In general, everything, stop praising. See for yourself. Here there is a description of the game and you can download the rules, plus view the exact composition of the components. There a little later photos of everything out of the box will appear. And there you can see the availability - now there are in Moscow and St. Petersburg for delivery and just in Moscow stores. Yes, I almost forgot - the secret word is valid again. When buying, say " Habrahabr " or write in the note to the order - will give a small pleasant discount for anything.

    If anything, this will be a great weekend game with friends.

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