|Our Recommended Age:||7|
|Play Time:||60-120 minutes|
|Skills:||Geography, History, Planning, Strategy|
|Contents:||Stack of Red Capital City Cards, Stack of Blue Interesting City Cards, Stack of Green Wonders of the World, 2 dice, Stack of Action Cards, Game Board.|
Travel * Explore * Discover is a game that takes you on a trip around the world, well to three or so locations. Educational and fun, this game is great for the whole family! Learn fun facts about different cities and wonders of the world, while you take boats, cars, buses, trains, and planes to each destination. Plan your route carefully, so you can get to each of your locations to win!
Our family loves to travel and explore as much of the world as possible. We have only been able to travel in the United States so far, however, we love learning about other countries and places. Travel * Explore * Discover is the perfect opportunity to do just that, but from the comfort of our gaming table! Visit each of your locations to win, but it can be tricky! You have to visit one capital city, one city that is not a capital, and one wonder of the world in any order, but all three before anyone else to win! The world is your game board, literally!
The rules are actually pretty simple and game play is straightforward as well. There is some reading, but for younger children you can avoid that part or adjust as you like. There is not much set up and the game comes in a nice box with a plastic insert that has a spot for everything. I love when game boxes have inserts with a place for each piece or stack of cards! So organized. However, in this case the box is only as large as it is due to the game board, which I don’t like. The board is a nice chipboard with a kid friendly map of the world and as such has to be pretty big though, so it is understandable. The cards are all decent quality pictures of the places they represent at the tops and text below that gives you some fun facts about them. There are action cards that are of the same quality with text only on them. The pawn pieces are plastic, and the dice seem to be as well, although a tad heavier. The icons on the dice are simple to understand, with a boat, plane, taxi, and bus on them. That’s it for the game pieces, over all fairly decent quality parts, now let’s learn how to play.
First open the game board and put it between all the players. Then everyone chooses a color to be and draws one red card, this card is your starting location, so put the pawn there. The game doesn’t tell you how to choose a first player, so you can do so however you like. We roll for it, almost always with the occasional rock, paper, scissors. Play moves in the normal clockwise fashion once you begin. Now, everyone gets one red, one blue, and one green card. These are your destinations, and you have to land on or pass through each one to win. It doesn’t specifically say that you have to have these cards face up on the table, but you can play that way with younger kids, certainly. Either way, line up your destination in a way that makes it easier for you to travel from one to another, assuming you stick to your travel plans that is.
On your turn, you will roll the dice and move your pawn based on one of the dice rolled. You will get two options, but can only choose one. If you roll a plane, you can only fly from your current location to any airport, identified by the red circle around its location. The ship allows you to travel from ports, which are shown as a dotted line, from one to another, you have to be on one of these spots when you roll to use the ship. The train, bus, and taxi all move on land only, using the solid black lines. The train lets you move 3 places, the bus allows for 2, and the taxi is just one space. I never seem to get the plane when I need it, but I seem to get the taxi a lot, much to the kid’s amusement.
After you roll, choose which die you will use and then move your spaces, preferably towards the destination you are working towards. However, you have to use one of the dice, you can’t just not move. Also, if you roll and cannot do anything on the dice, then you have to take an action card. These can range from “Yay! Closer to my destination! All the way to, “OMG! Where the heck did I just get moved to!” and a lot in between. Sometimes you can move someone else to a new location, just hope it doesn’t help them with their travel plans. I was two spaces from winning once when I got sent to Australia, I was in South America. Yeah, my luck in games is not always great, hehe.
If you manage to land on or pass through one of your destinations, announce it victoriously, and then read what is on the card. Don’t read the questions yet! Read the text on the card, and THEN choose a question to read. The player, not you, who answers correctly gets an immediate free turn! They take that turn now, and then play continues in the correct order. Your card goes face up on the table to show the others how awesome you are in getting to your destination! At least that is what we do. Next, try to get to your second destination!
The game ends when one player gets to or through all three of their destinations! There really cannot be a tie in this game, which is kind of nice, actually. We hate trying to figure out tie-breakers. The winner gets to declare themselves the greatest traveler of all time, or until the game is played again.
That is all there is to the game, not hard to set up, not hard to learn, and pretty straightforward to play. There are rules you can incorporate to make it more challenging, though, which I always love. You can have each player grab two cards of each color to make the trip more challenging and longer, or you can just use one die instead of both! You can also force players to land directly ON the space for their destination, and not count it when they just pass over it. This is especially challenging I feel, but that might be because I could spend five turns trying to land on the spot for the plane! Then there is of course rolling the plane while on the spot! Dice and I do not get along well. I like the extra rules, though, as the game at its core is a bit too easy for us. Kids younger than our 11 and 13-year-olds would be perfect for the core rules, though! In fact, if you drop the reading and extra turn questions, and play face up, kids who cannot read (or read well) could play easily. Plus, they would learn some amazing destinations around the world!
Fun for all ages, this educational game is great for homeschool, family game night, or testing your knowledge of places around the world.