Thursday, November 7, 2013

Analog Gaming Remembers - Quicksand

Like most people, I started my board gaming roots with the basics: Clue, Sorry, and Monopoly. Then came others, like Operation and Guess Who. Then I started to go off the beaten path, trying out games like Mouse Trap, and even Labyrinth. Then there's Quicksand.

Perhaps it was the Relic Runners review I just read, but that bearded guy with the explorers hat sparked a memory from my childhood, of another explorer that explored the jungle. Except it was filled with quicksand.

The goal was simply to be the first one back to camp. Despite all the quicksand, there was no player elimination. And the only backstabbing was really getting the alligator with the die roll, which allowed the player to move any other player back a few spaces. So why did this game leave such an impression? Just look at the board!

Your players actually look like they're sinking RIGHT INTO THE BOARD!!!  How cool was that? My brother and I actually played with the pieces more than the actual game, pretending to be adventurers sunk in the quicksand for no apparent reason. But that added depth to the game make Quicksand more than just your typical board game; it made it REAL. It made it visually tense, to see your player getting "deeper and deeper" as they make their way through the jungle. I guess the "half" player tokens from Relic Runners was probably what knocked the locked-away memory from the top shelf of my mind.

Where's the game now? Somewhere in my parents' house, ironically sunk in a quicksand of items time forgot. I'm sure if we dug around, we'd find it again. But, as my brother quipped, it's probably housing several families of spiders and a colony of mold.
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