Amuse Amaze: Not Very Amazing.


Over Gen Con 2009, we met some fantastically friendly people at HL Games. They were kind enough to offer us a demo copy of their game AmuseAmaze, a word racing game through a tangle of hedges.  We were given a brief rundown on the rules at the con and I thought that the game sounded like a lot of fun.  However, when we sat down to actually play it, what we found did not meet expectations.

The idea behind AmuseAmaze is to make little words that take you in the right direction along the board towards your goal.  As you go you can place letter tiles to help you along.  There are also available turn bonuses for creating longer words, or for using difficult letters.  Furthermore, you have a nifty gardener that can help you out once per game by chopping you a path through an offending hedge.  Sounds good, right?

What we ran into was monotony.  The concepts were pretty sound, but the game had no pizazz.  There was simply no excitement in the air.  We played two different games, with different numbers of players, in hopes that it might be played best with a certain magic number, but no such luck.  It was as if a group of adults were playing Candy Land or Parcheesi, it didn’t hold our interest.

After the game we began hypothesizing on how we could make this game more interesting.  There were lots of suggestions made.  Here are a few:

  • Instead of taking turns, allow players to call out words that they see, moving their pawn in the right direction, and their opponents in the wrong direction.
  • Allow for the boards to be swapped around based upon different conditions.  For example:  If you make an 8 letter word, switch two boards on the table around.
  • Play on a much smaller board, thus causing players to be in each others way more.
  • Disallow the duplicate use of words (Player A can’t use ‘Apple’ and then Player B follow right behind them by using the same ‘Apple’).

The other complaint we had was with the components themselves.  I know… I know… I feel like I pick on peoples’ components a lot, but the boards that were used were warped in the box, so they wouldn’t lay very flat, and then they kept scooting around really really easily.  It just became a pain in the neck.  Maybe if the pieces had been flat it wouldn’t have been so bad, but the warped boards were a headache.  I haven’t had too many problems with warped games in the past, so perhaps it was something unique to that kind of cardboard that caused them to be like that.

All and all, this was not a game appropriate for my gaming group.  I could see this going over OK with little kids or significantly older adults (aka. something grandma could play with the young grand kids), but for a group of young adults, it really was less then stellar.  Although if you do find yourself with a copy of this game and don’t love it, try spicing it up with one of our suggestions and see what that does for you.

This entry was posted by The_Null_Entry on Monday, September 14th, 2009 at 9:53 am and is filed under Board Game Reviews, Word Games . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

82 Comments

  1. Thank you for another informative website. The place else may just I
    get that kind of information written in such an ideal way?
    I’ve a undertaking that I am simply now working on, and I have been at the look out
    for such info.

  2. all the time i used to read smaller posts which also clear their motive, and that is also happening
    with this post which I am reading at this place.

  3. I read this piece of writing completely concerning the comparison of most up-to-date and previous technologies, it’s remarkable article.

  4. This information is invaluable. Where can I find out more?

  5. I’m no longer certain where you are getting your information, however great topic.

    I must spend some time finding out much more or working out more.
    Thanks for magnificent info I used to be on the lookout for this information for my
    mission.

  6. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest twitter updates.
    I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something
    like this. Please let me know if you run into anything.

    I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your
    new updates.

  7. Attractive section of content. I just stumbled upon your site
    and in accession capital to assert that I get actually enjoyed account your blog
    posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access consistently rapidly.

  8. bigger butt says:

    Hey There. I discovered your weblog the use of msn.
    That is a really well written article. I’ll make sure
    to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful info.

    Thank you for the post. I will certainly return.

  9. Rich says:

    Good day! I just want to give you a huge thumbs up for the excellent info you have right here on this post.
    I will be returning to your blog for more soon.

  10. route travel says:

    This article presents clear idea in favor of the new people of blogging, that really
    how to do blogging and site-building.

  11. Aw, this was an incredibly nice post. Taking the time and
    actual effort to create a superb article… but what can I say… I put things
    off a lot and don’t seem to get anything done.

  12. Hi! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any trouble with hackers?
    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing several weeks of hard work due to no data
    backup. Do you have any methods to prevent hackers?

  13. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an incredibly long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyways, just wanted to say superb blog!

  14. Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before but after browsing through some of
    the post I realized it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m definitely delighted I found it and I’ll be book-marking
    and checking back often!

  15. estate agent says:

    What i don’t understood is if truth be told how you’re not actually a lot more well-appreciated than you
    may be right now. You are very intelligent. You recognize therefore considerably with regards to this topic, produced me
    in my view imagine it from so many varied angles. Its like men and women are not interested
    except it is one thing to do with Lady gaga! Your own stuffs nice.

    At all times maintain it up!

  16. Greetings from California! I’m bored to tears at work
    so I decided to browse your blog on my iphone
    during lunch break. I enjoy the information you present here and can’t wait to take a look when I
    get home. I’m surprised at how fast your blog loaded on my phone ..

    I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyways, awesome blog!

  17. yogatute.com says:

    Peculiar article, totally what I was looking for.

  18. backup keys says:

    My brother recommended I might like this website.
    He was once entirely right. This put up actually made my day.
    You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this info!
    Thanks!

  19. I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great.
    I do not know who you are but certainly you’re going to a
    famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!

  20. If you are going for best contents like I do, just go to see this
    web site all the time as it offers feature contents,
    thanks

  21. This blog was… how do you say it? Relevant!!
    Finally I have found something which helped me. Thanks a lot!

  22. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get several e-mails with the same comment.
    Is there any way you can remove people from that service?

    Bless you!

  23. Leonie says:

    I absolutely love your site.. Pleasant colors & theme. Did you create this site yourself?
    Please reply back as I’m planning to create my very own website and want to find out where
    you got this from or exactly what the theme is called.
    Cheers!

  24. Thanks for any other informative website. The place else may I am getting that kind of info written in such an ideal manner?
    I’ve a challenge that I am just now working on, and I have been on the look out for such information.

  25. Hi friends, pleasant piece of writing and nice arguments commented
    here, I am genuinely enjoying by these.

  26. federal loan says:

    Thankfulness to my father who shared with me regarding this blog, this
    blog is actually amazing.

  27. My developer is trying to convince me to move to .net from
    PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the costs.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using WordPress on a number of websites
    for about a year and am anxious about switching to another platform.

    I have heard fantastic things about blogengine.net.

    Is there a way I can import all my wordpress posts into
    it? Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  28. WOW just what I was searching for. Came here by searching for insurance quotes

  29. I am no longer sure where you are getting your info, however great topic.
    I needs to spend a while learning more or figuring out more.
    Thanks for excellent information I used to be looking for this information for my mission.

  30. Beatris says:

    Hello, I would like to subscribe for this blog to get newest updates, thus where can i do it please
    assist.

  31. Wilton says:

    Hmm it appears like your website ate my first comment (it was super long)
    so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and
    say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well
    am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to everything.
    Do you have any points for first-time blog writers? I’d definitely appreciate it.

  32. Kassandra says:

    hey there and thank you for your info – I’ve certainly picked up something new from right here.
    I did however expertise several technical issues using this web site, as I
    experienced to reload the site a lot of times previous to I
    could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your hosting is OK?
    Not that I’m complaining, but slow loading instances times will sometimes affect your
    placement in google and can damage your high-quality score
    if ads and marketing with Adwords. Well I am adding this RSS to my e-mail
    and could look out for a lot more of your respective interesting content.
    Make sure you update this again soon.

Leave a Reply

*