Though there’s no expressed theme to Dimension, there’s certainly a science-y feel to this game of colorful sphere stacking. Like pulling together particles for a textbook model of an atom, five sets of three balls each are your playing pieces as you race to create the most complete stack while following as many of that round’s Task Cards as possible.
Explainable in minutes, each player starts the game with a complete set of balls, a Player Tray that holds the balls in place and serves as the base for your stack, an Overview Card, and ten points. Every round six new Task Cards are revealed, utilizing icons (explained in the Overview Card) to set the conditions for the round. Task Cards can be that black balls can’t touch orange balls, white balls can’t be stacked on top of, the number of blue and green balls has to total four, and so on in any combination. After the Task Cards are revealed, the hourglass is flipped and players race to create the most complete stack while following as many of the Task Cards as possible.
When time runs out, stacks are scored first by giving 1 point each for the balls in a player’s stack. After scoring, players check the Task Cards for that round, discarding 2 points for every Task Card violated. With an ever-changing set of tasks, this means that some rounds a player could score higher without actually completing a full stack of 11 globes to avoid the costly penalties for violating Task Cards. After all Task Cards have been gone over, players then are given a bonus token if they were able to use all five colors of balls in their stack. Six short rounds make a game and points are totaled for the win!
With the development of more and more games, it’s exciting to see the different corners of your mind that they are able to explore. The first few rounds of Dimension were absolute fun, but there’s no denying how much of an idiot I felt like with a frantic and confused look on my face, balls spilling out of each hand, and expletives flying from my mouth with the last grains of sand running down the hourglass. This isn’t the sort of calculated deduction you can try to perfectly orchestrate or an analysis paralysis pretzel of a mechanic builder. This is an adrenaline drenched, “this means this, but then that means that, but if I did this then I can’t do this, but if I do that I’ll only lose two points, but… shoot, time’s almost up!” fun game to liven up any party. (Kosmos) by David C. Obenour