Satisfy Your Need for Speed: A Preview of Project NOS

Project NOS

Players race to be the fastest roller in this real time game about fast cards and fast dice — now on Kickstarter.

Gameplay

Each player takes a car and three white dice. At the start of each round, you can choose to take a colored modification card and a colored die to match, simply take a colored die that already matches one of your cards, or skip adding a modification in order to repair damage to your vehicle.

There are six possible modifications, two in each color. You can have up to three, but they must be different colors. Once every player has six dice, you start the race.

Each race is made up of six track cards which each have a number on them. Players start at one end and compete to be the first to reach the finish line. Players all roll as quickly as possible, at the same time. You roll your dice two at a time (unless you have the modification card that allows you to roll three). If you roll a number that matches the number listed on the section of track you are currently on, you place it on the card and proceed to the next section of track. If you roll one lower than the number listed on the track card or any number higher, you can choose to place the die and incur one point of damage. Your car cannot have more than two points of damage.

Your modification cards only apply when you are rolling a colored die that matches it. For instance, the gray Wide Tire card allows you to avoid damage when using a die whose result is one lower than that listed on the track card, but only works if you use it with a gray die.

After all players have reached the finish line, the player who came first picks a track card and places it in his score pile. It is worth as many victory points as the number written on it. Players take turns selecting track cards in the order they reached the finish line.

Players then return all modification cards, a new track is laid out, and a new round starts. Unless you repair your car during the modification phase, all damage carries over. The game takes place over three races — the player with the most points at the end of the game, wins.

Project NOS components

Review

The real-time aspect of the game works great with the racing theme. You legitimately do feel the competition as you race each other to roll dice and progress along the track. There is always something enjoyable about real-time games, including a lot of laughter as you try to move as quickly as possible.

Your ability to customize your car, and by extension your strategy, lends the gameplay depth and allows you to make some interesting choices, while the option to take damage in order to make certain parts of the track easier, means that you have to decide when it’s best to use that option. This combination means that Project NOS has a lot more strategy than some dice rolling games.

The game has fantastic artwork that really embraces all the speed and energy of the gameplay. We had a lot of fun with this one. It plays fast, there are some interesting choices, and it’s just enjoyable to see who can roll their dice the fastest. If you want something light, quick, and not too serious, check out Project NOS on Kickstarter.

Pros: Great gameplay, modification cards add a nice layer of strategy to the game

Cons: Lots of luck may turn some players off

Disclosure: this preview is based on our evaluation of an unpublished prototype of the game, which is subject to change prior to publication. While a modest payment was received to expedite the review process, our thoughts and opinions expressed here are honest and accurate.