TableTopTakes: Titan Race
There are a lot of big games out there that do a lot of big things. Titan Race is not one of those games, but what it does in a small package, it does well. And it’s a game that creates a lot of fun when you play it.
In Titan Race, you take on the roll of one of several Titans have their own special powers and are racing around weird maps. A game consists of looping over the same map three times, avoiding the traps and other players on the board, and dealing with whatever unique effect is on the map. Each round consists of one player rolling a number of dice equal to the number of Titans in the game. Starting with the first player, each player drafts a die and uses the movement rules shown on that die to determine what direction they go. The players continue around drafting dice until each person has used a die. Then the first player moves to the next player and the process is repeated.
Titan Race is a pretty simple game that has a few things that make it unique. The first is that as well as it being a race game, where the winning goal is to loop the board three times, it is also a combat game where you are trying to knock other players out for a round so that you can get further ahead. You have certain spots you can land to get ability cards that you can then use that might heal your damage, or damage your opponent. Plus, if you run into an opponent, you do push them and that deals them a damage as well. And if you set it up correctly, for example, on the lava map, you can cause a lot of damage to happen and hopefully get that turn where the player is knocked down and recovering to get ahead of them. And then they’ll start trying to chase you down so that you get knocked out as well. Plus each rider has their own ability which will make a difference in how well they can attack or move as well.
For me, Titan Race really shines not in the base mode of the game, but in the Grand Prix mode, where instead of looping over the same board three times, you run your way down across three boards. That means that you are dealing with three different terrains. Yes, you might lose some of the value of dropping traps, but if you get ahead you can do that, but the variety in boards is great. On some worlds, like the lava world, you can end up in lava and get damage dealt to you whereas the ice world allows you to slide across the map in interesting ways. Hopefully, not helping your opponents by pushing them forward when you do that. And like there are six different Titans, there are 6 different boards, though, it is three double sided boards, so you have a good variety of the terrains. And you can put the terrain in any order creating more variety.
While Titan Race isn’t a complex game, it is a good game night game. The game is simple enough that even more board game adjacent people are going to be able to pick it up quickly, and it’s a game that works with most ages. It does have a few small pieces that you might lose, but for the most part, the lap tracker pieces, I don’t use, because we are playing Grand Prix, not looping over a single map, so we only go over the board a single time. The life trackers are small as well, but I haven’t found that an issue or that they get bumped off a spot too much as the footprint on the table is small, so you aren’t reaching far for anything. Now, at times the game can be too simple. If the dice aren’t in your favor and someone else is able to get into a lead, it’s hard to stop them as you can’t drop traps in front of them. This is one advantage of looping over the same board, but, like I said above, it makes less variety in the game by doing that.
While I enjoy this game, I can see it being a game that not everyone will enjoy. This is not a heavy game and clearly falls into the filler category, but some people don’t like light fillers and would prefer just a fast but thinky game, Titan Race won’t provide that. I do think that it is a game you can pull out in a lot of situations because of the light theme and light complexity, and I like to have games like that in my collection. I’m not sure that Titan Race is always the filler game that I’d pull out, but being able to play up to 6 and not being a party game is really nice. Overall, I think more people will enjoy this game than those who don’t, but it won’t be for every group.
Overall Grade: B
Gamer Grade: D+
Casual Grade: B+
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