The Legend of Landlock

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Do not let the childish theme of Landlock lull you into thinking that this is just a children’s game.  While the rules are simple enough for an 8 year old to master, the strategy that comes into play will keep any adult on his or her toes.


By placing one tile per turn you score various amounts of points by doing such things as, land locking or water locking your opponent, matching up gnomes, placing creatures and running a continuous path (either land or water) to each of the four sides. Sounds simple enough and it would be, if they hadn’t added a few bridges into the draw pile.

The game is made up of tiles that are placed during the course of a game to form a 6 by 6 grid.  Every tile will have portions of two paths, a land path and a waterway.  In addition to this, there may also be a happy little creature, a gnome or a bridge.  The creatures will garner you a few extra points as soon as there placed, the gnomes as well (if they are facing each other) while the bridge will either play havoc with your strategy or give you a needed break.

Game play is fast, you can play an entire game in less than 15 minutes.  The components are sturdy and colorful.  The artwork is cute and vibrant.

As I said earlier, younger kids can master the rules pretty quickly.  The strategy of playing the tiles will come a little bit slower.  The tactical aspect of the game will really shine when bridges and gnomes start appearing.  You see, bridges not only break up boundaries by replacing an already played tile, they also let you move the tile you just replaced.  This opens up a whole new part of the game, where one shift on the board can send the most well placed strategy back to the drawing board.  There is also the often overlooked ability to set the parameters of the end game scoring with a strategic placement of the 6th tile horizontally and vertically. This in and of itself can give a player a nice advantage if done early in the game.  I won’t go into too much detail here, but it’s there, just look for it.

Overall, this is a good, light, 2 player game that can be picked up  quite easily. Kids will love it for the theme while adults will find its  tactical aspects fulfilling.

Complexity: 1             Strategy: 2             Luck: 4             Overall: 3

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