Many of our favorite game companies were represented at Toy Fair this year, and almost all had new products to show off. We spent two days crawling the show floor, and here's the best of what we saw! We'll be doing in-depth reviews on most of these games over the next few weeks, so you won't see an ordered "best of" list here, but here's a rundown of what we feel where the coolest games to come out of Toy Fair 2010: Martian Fluxx by Looney Labs Based on one of our favorite card games, Fluxx, this game allows players to take on the role of Martians in their quest to destroy the human race. Fluxx is a game built around the unique concept of having barely any rules. The only starting rules are that each player has a three-card hand, and must draw 1 card and play 1 card each turn. Many of the cards you draw and play have rules on them, including victory conditions, so every game is different as you do not know which rules will be played on the table, and what it will take to win. We're excited to see Fluxx being taken in this direction, as a quick peek at the cards already had us laughing. Our early impression is that the addition of a Martian theme adds a few extra style points to an already solid and established game. The Climbers by Strategic Space An all-wooden 3-D strategy game originally published in Germany by Chili Games in 2008, The Climbers is now being brought to America by Strategic Space, Inc. The concept of the game is to get your pawn to the top of the mountain and hold it, but there is much more strategy involved. Players are only allowed to advance up the mountain on certain colored spaces, and area allowed to pick up, rotate, and move a piece of the mountain each turn to build their own path to the top. There are also one-time-use items such as ladders of varying length to allow for rapid advancement, and blocking stones to prevent players from following in your footsteps. This all adds up to a very competitive, strategy heavy game that we feel should hold up well to repeated play. Cthulu Dice by Steve Jackson Games A 2-6 player dice game, Cthulu Dice pits players against each other, while also watching out for the appearance of Cthulu, the H.P. Lovecraft monster/cosmic entity. At a low $5 MSRP, the customized 12-sided die included is impressive, and looks to be an excellent use of the Cthulu property. Yamodo! Party Time by Yamodo Taking the popular Yamodo concept of creating definitions to made-up words, Yamodo! Party time creates a game that can only be described as a Pictionary with Apples to Apple scoring, and of course, gibberish for words. We'll be reviewing this one as soon as we can get the Modern Day Pirate staff (and a few six-packs) together, for what we hope will be a welcome addition into our collection of party games. Zip-It by Bananagrams As a follow up to Bananagrams, a game we previously featured in our "Games You Should be Playing" article, Zip-It originated from the desire to make Bananagrams to portable it could be played on an airplane. In Zip-It, each player receives twelve six-sided letter dice, and must race against their opponent to create a fully readable crossword grid. The game is very fast, with rounds lasting as short as 20 seconds a piece, and can be played in a series of rounds up to 10 points for a total victory. Rowboat by Moosetache Games We had the opportunity to sit down at the Moosestache Games booth and play a round of Rowboat with the game's creator, and were surprised to see how much strategy could be packed into a one deck of cards. Play progresses over several rounds, where each rounds players take turns pitting cards of varying strength against each other. The game is much deeper than we can do it justice here, though, so we'll just have to wait until the full review for a rules breakdown of this game. Just off of our initial play, we can tell that Rowboat offers enough of a mental challenge to turn the heads of serious strategy gamers.
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