Add new comment | Casual Game Revolution

Add new comment

Breakdancing Meeples

The timer is ticking and you have sixty seconds to roll your meeples as fast as you can to complete dance routines and win the approval of the crowd.

Published by Atlas Games, Breakdancing Meeples is a real-time dexterity game, played over four rounds. Between each round players may draft new dance routines into their repertoire, before heading back out onto the dance floor.

Gameplay

Each player takes six meeples, six cubes, and two starting dance routine cards. Dance routine cards show a number of meeples, with each meeple in one of three positions: standing, lying on their side, or lying on their head. You will need a sixty second timer (there is an official app that you can use).

The game is played over four rounds. At the beginning of each round you start the timer and then players all roll their meeples at the same time, as quickly and as often as they can, until the timer runs out. If one or more of your meeples land in a position shown on one of your dance routine cards, you can place it on the card, locking it in place. A meeple locked in cannot be rerolled until you complete the card. When rerolling your meeples, you must reroll all meeples that are not locked in. A meeple that is rolled and lands flat on its back is a lazy meeple, which is never called for by a dance routine card.

When you complete a routine card, you must announce the card’s name and then place a cube on one of the cube spaces before removing all the meeples from off the card. If all the cube spots have been covered on a card, you may not complete that card again that round. If you run out of cubes, you cannot complete anymore cards at all that round. When the timer finishes, you may finish placing any meeples you have already rolled and any cubes.

Players then remove the cubes from their cards, scoring points equal to the numbers shown on the spaces that were covered.

Next, routine cards equal to the number of players plus one are dealt out to the center of the table. Starting with the player with the fewest points, each player may draft a new routine card. You may only have three routine cards at a time. If you ever have four, you must return one to the center of the table. There are also rally cards, which cost a certain number of points to draft, and rather than counting towards your hand limit attach to one of your routine cards. These will often allow you to score bonus points for such things as the number of cubes you have on cards or for rolling all your meeples on their backs.

There is also a special type of routine card which, instead of scoring you points, if you attach any two meeples in a matching dancing position, you may take a lazy meeple and rotate it to any dancing position.

The player with the most points at the end of four rounds wins the game.

Breakdancing Meeples Components

Review

Breakdancing Meeples is fun, fast, and silly. There’s a lot of mad meeple rolling and hoping they land right, yelling out the names of the dances, and cheering when you get a great roll. There is a bit of dexterity involved in learning to roll the meeples well — and, why you’ll never guarantee certain rolls, there are better ways than others to avoid the lazy meeples.

The drafting phase adds a nice layer to the game. While it is still quite a light little game, there is an interesting decision-making process in which routines to draft, taking into account how many points they can be worth versus trying to choose cards you’ll have a higher chance of completing or that combine well together. Having to spend points to purchase the rally cards is also a neat idea and forces you to consider how much those cards are really worth to you.

This game includes a mobile app which, while not necessary for playing, does add nicely to the theme. It includes music and an announcer each round, and helps players easily keep track of scores. It would have been nice, however, if the game came with a sand timer and score pad for those who’d prefer not to use an app. Any timer or paper would work, but since they are necessary to the game, we would have preferred them included in the box. However, the meeples themselves have a fun design to them, and rolling them is enjoyable. The game also comes in a light, compact tin, making it portable and easy to pack.

Breakdancing Meeples has about a five-minute game time. It’s accessible, it’s chaotic, and it’s just thoroughly enjoyable. It has that extra bit of strategy in the card drafting to nicely balance out the rapid real-time rolling of meeples. It’s easy to set up, and easy to say ‘just one more game’ after each time you play.

Pros: Portable, drafting phase brings a little strategy, rolling the meeples is fun

Cons: No physical timer included

Disclosure: we received a complimentary review copy of this game.