One of my business partners scored us a demo copy of this “game” to test and review during the Origins game fair. They brought it back to our booth where we were working and that night we gave it a try. I guess it would help to first explain what it was that I was expecting.
Square Shooters is advertised as a dice game that uses a set of dice capable of creating any poker hand. Apparently some very intelligent individual worked out an algorithm necessary to accomplish that. These snazzy dice come in a box with a nice dice cup, some cards, some chips, a score pad, and of course some instructions. Therefore what I suspected was a well thought out poker variant using these new dice. What I got was far from that.
The game consisted of flipping over a card, which said something like “A full house – 4 points, A full house using _____ cards – 8 points” (where _____ was a list of specific cards). Roll the dice and see if you can get that in three rolls. If you can, great! If you can’t pass the dice and let the next person try with a new card. I was far less than impressed.
Now I’ll be the first one to admit that dice games are not exactly my favorite style of game in the world. However I can enjoy a game of “Mmmm… Brains!” or “Zombie Dice” while waiting for my appetizers to arrive, and I know others in my group actively enjoy dice games. So when I found that we were all bored and ready to move on so quickly, I found myself surprised and disappointed.
I must say the dice worked as intended. It seemed that you could always get the last “card” you needed, if you had a good roll, which is something that can’t be boasted by other poker dice. For this reason, this might be a really good set of dice to add to your dice bag for rainy day occasions, but as a complete game, it wasn’t worth the piece of paper the rules were written on.
I found out quite after the fact that while the company pushes a “Deluxe” set, which is what we were given, there is also a “Basic” set, and a third option that allows you to purchase just the dice. The Deluxe set comes with all the things I described above (cup, playing cards, game cards, chips, etc). The Basic set still comes with the game cards and chips, but ditches the cup and playing cards. The last option, the dice set, comes with just that: the dice. My suggestion to potential customers? Save yourself some money and disappointment, and just pick up the dice if you really feel so inclined.
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