COOPERATIVE GAMES HAVE A SMALL PLACE IN THE RockyMountainNavy game collection. We own several Matt Leacock titles, going back to Forbidden Island (Gamewright, 2010) and of course Pandemic (Z-Man Games, 2008) as well as the wargamer version, Pandemic: Fall of Rome (Z-Man Games, 2018). Back in 2018, I almost pulled the trigger on the then-hotness, Forbidden Sky (Gamewright, 2018) but ultimately didn’t do so. Maybe it was because of some of the mixed reviews at the time. Several weeks back I had the chance to trade on BoardGameGeek for a copy of Forbidden Sky and it arrived and made it to the gaming table this weekend.
Boy, did we miss out on a great game – but no more!
In Forbidden Sky the players are adventurers who are stranded on a strange platform in the middle of a great storm. They must explore/build the platform to complete a circuit and launch the Rocketship before they are either electrocuted to death or blown away. Game play is very typical of many cooperative games; on your turn you take up to four Actions (Move, Scout, Explore, Wire) after which you draw a number of Storm Cards based on the current Storm Intensity. Every Adventurer has a special skill and a variable amount of Health and Rope. Truth be told, there is little exciting in the game play.
Instead, the tension builds as your team literally builds the platform. Along the way you must put together the Launch Platform and a requisite number of Large and Small Capacitors and Lightning Rods all connected by Wires. Not only do you have to have the right components, but they must be connected in a proper circuit. Forbidden Sky really is the ultimate hotwire game!
The combination of puzzle and circuit building sets Forbidden Sky apart from the other Forbidden titles and totally distinguishes it from the Pandemic series. The need to Explore (build) the platform and Wire it all together is challenging, but the rewards at the end is much more tangible than the ‘save the world’ of Pandemic or ‘whew, we made it’ of Forbidden Island.
Most importantly, RockyMountainNavy T, my Autism Spectrum boy who is working towards an Electrical Apprenticeship, totally fell in love with the game. He could not say it, but I can tell the game spoke to him. This game, themed around electricity, really is about him. Can he puzzle through a problem, build the circuit, and complete the job?
Although we lost our first game, RockyMountainNavy T was totally gushing about it. He studied all the Adventurers and looked through all the tiles and even put together a few circuits based on the different Blueprint Cards (challenge levels). He is very anxious to get this game to the table again, and again. I for one will be very happy to indulge him because playing games together and having an enjoyable time is ultimately what our hobby is about. Best of all, its good for the family.
Forbidden Sky has jumped to the top of the Saturday Game Night line up not because its a good game (it is), but it is a game that the entire RockyMountainNavy family enjoys together.
Forbidden Island makes a great Father’s Day present…from this Dad to the family.