|Our Recommended Age:||5+|
|Play Time:||20 min|
IELLO (which by the way is pronounced like yellow) makes some pretty amazing games. It is no surprise that I bring you another great game and this one is kid friendly too! Both of my kids LOVE The Hare and the Tortoise which is another in a fantastic Tales and Games series . Kids stories turned into games!
The Hare and the Tortoise is a classic story of course but IELLO is taking that story one step further by adding to it. They even include a small booklet with 3 versions of the story! The game is based off of the third version which has the Hare demanding a rematch and the Tortoise accepting. However, other creatures over heard and also want to race!
In this story the Tortoise accepts the rematch of the century! Well I think it is anyway…only this time they have competition. The Fox, the Lamb and the Wolf join the Hare and the Tortoise in this race to see who is the fastest runner in the woods. I would bet on the Wolf…but that might be my darker side talking.
The game comes in a box that resembles a book. Yes it looks like a book and I LOVE that they did that. I mean it IS a game based off of a story so to me that just makes sense.
I’m glad they thought so too. When you open it (like a book but I would lay it down first) there is a nice little plastic holder for all the pieces. I do love organization…I’ve mentioned this I think.
All of the cards are just standard cards with fun and well done artwork on them. Some of the cards have the point system on them. These tell you who gets to move and when. For example the Turtle gets to move every time at least one space if there are 0-3 cards played of the Turtle but he gets to move 2 spaces if 4 cards of him are played.
I love the artwork, it is great. It is the right amount of adorable for kids with some adult humor thrown in. I love games that do that. Just makes them more fun.
There really is no game board exactly. You make your own every time you play with the pieces that resemble a road. This is the track for your race and the pieces are made out of what I believe is Chipboard. The winner’s stand, finish line and smaller pieces are also made out of this. I love this material because while you can bend it if you try (which I wouldn’t do) they don’t bend easily on their own during game play or from littler hands.
Each animal is a wooden solid piece that you have to put a sticker on. I’m not a fan of stickers on pieces as they tend to come off due to lots of game play but so far they are holding up and the pieces themselves are very good quality. Overall this game is very well made and the box is perfect for it! Then again I have come to expect that kind of good quality in a game from IELLO. Now on to the how to’s and what nots!
Get the most points by betting on the right animal to win!
First shuffle up the cards with the ball on the back. These are the character cards and every player gets one randomly. This is considered your First Bet and you don’t show this card to anyone.
If you are playing with just 2 players then each player gets two Character Cards or 2 Bets. Put whatever is left away without peeking…that’s cheating.
My son likes to get the wolf and my daughter pretty much ignores her Bets anyway and plays what she wants…but you are supposed to try to get this or your 2nd Bet card to win.
Now you have to set up the track. Simply place the Start tile and then randomly select tiles and choose a side to place them. Put the Finish Line at the end and the Winner’s podium nearby the Finish Line. Now shuffle the Racing Cards. These have the checkered flag look on the back.
Deal out 7 to each player. Now each player chooses one card and places it face down in front of them. This is the 2nd Bet. You CAN choose the same as your First Bet if you want.
You do get double the points if your character wins but you can also get NO points if your character does not win or place at all. I like to have two different ones but my daughter, again, really just likes to pick what she wants and then ignores it anyway.
The remaining cards are yours to use for your turn. The rules are different if there are only 2 players so make sure you check on those. The deck of race cards should be where everyone can reach them and everyone should get an Aid Card.
These are the cards that have all the characters on them and look like each has some sort of equation to solve…that is not the case though.
This card shows how each animal can move…I’ll get to that in the Play section. Put all the Animal figures on the starting line and whoever says what time it is first gets to go first. Announce this at the beginning and make sure everyone knows that after it is all set up is when it counts…not before hand. Or be sneaky and watch a clock like my son who is learning how to tell time…he wanted go first really bad.
Now the fun part! Starting with the First Player, who should get the First Player Token (the Stop Watch), each player plays Racing Cards in front of them face up.
You can place 1 – 4 cards at a time but they have to be the SAME animal. Keep in mind that 4 cards triggers the Racing Phase where you move the animals.
When you play your cards you immediately draw back up to 6 cards. Playing a total of 8 cards (exactly) will also trigger the Racing Phase. If the race has a 1st place winner you can still play those character cards if you want to.
That is where the strategy of the game comes into play. My kids don’t have that really yet but my son is learning…too quickly for me.
The Racing Phase is fun…and how the animals move of course. It looks complicated and might be confusing after I explain it but that is how I roll. All the animals move in a specific order. Hare, Tortoise, Wolf, Fox and then the Lamb. Each animal also has its own rule about movement.
Normally the animals move only if their cards were played and then a certain number of spaces depending on how many cards were played. The Hare moves 2 spaces if 1 – 4 cards are played unless he is in first place…then he doesn’t move at all…he takes a nap instead. The only exception is if he is on the starting line.
The Tortoise is next and he moves 1 space if 0-3 cards are played and 2 spaces if 4 cards are played. Yes..he moves even if no one plays his cards! Cheater….
The Wolf has two types of cards regular cards with just the wolf and 3 with a small picture of the wolf howling in the corner. These are special cards that mean no one moves BUT the wolf. He scares the animals with his howl…he is hungry after all. If 1 -2 cards are played then he moves 1 space but if 3 – 4 cards are played he moves that number minus 1…so if you play 4 he only moves 3 spaces. Again..cheater
The wolf is my daughters favorite card…even if it is not either of her Bets she will play it more often than not. Especially the Howl one…my kids actually howl when that card is played and when the wolf moves. Add more fun!
The Fox just moves for however many cards are played. Play 3 cards he moves 3 spaces. Easiest card ever! The Lamb is cheaty too. Play 1 – 4 cards and the Lamb moves that many spaces +1. So play 4 cards and he moves 5 spaces.
However, if he comes to a Stream then he stops right there for a turn no matter how many cards were played. He can’t resist a drink of water.
Not too complicated. My kids tend to add sound effects too like screaming run away when the lamb moves ahead of the other animals, the howling or making vroom noises for the rabbit.
Once the Racing Phase is over and all animals have moved everyone discards the cards they played and the First Player token moves to the player clockwise of the current First Player. The game continues until 3 animals cross the finish line.
When the first animal crosses the finish line they go on the 1st place spot on the podium. Second animal goes in 2nd place and 3rd in 3rd place and only then is the game over. Every now flips over their Bet cards to show who they were rooting for. You can change the terminology for kids if you want but we use Bet.
1st Place gets 5 points, 2nd place gets 3 and 3rd gets 2 points. Everyone adds up their points and whoever has the most wins! If there is a tie then the animal that is higher on the podium wins…if it is still a tie then you play again to break it!
There are other ways to play. The rules give you instructions for a Championship mode as well as how to adjust for kids. Usually I do that but IELLO did it for you.
Same idea behind the game play but you leave out the Howl, use Turbo tokens but each player takes turns moving an animal of their choice based on the cards played. Other rules are the same.
We usually help with the moving but my son pretty much gets how it all works and my daughter knows the Wolf and Tortoise…her two favorites. Both kids understand how the Howl works and in fact all we do is leave out the Turbo tokens to adjust for her. The game is really great for young and older kids.
If you love games, stories and games based on stories then this is a perfect addition to your game library. It travels well, is made of high quality pieces, is great for kids and family game nights and a lot of fun!
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