Motörhead Board Game review
You may have already known this but still: there is unique Board Game out there, especially created for Motörhead fans. It was released in 2013 right before Christmas and endorsed by Lemmy himself. In his own particular way, of course: “I’ve had a fun life for sure. Playing this will help me remember it!’”
We found a review written by Antonios S for RPG.net, which proved to be a fun and instructive reading because it has knowledge not only on the game but also on the blissful life and music which inspired it.
Instead of ‘Hope you’ll enjoy it’ let’s just say: ‘So roll your dice, and I hope you feel nice!’
REVIEW OF MOTORHEAD / ROCK SCIENCE MOTORHEAD GAME
By Antonios S
Only way to feel the noise is when it’s good and loud, So good I can’t believe it, screaming with the crowd, Don’t sweat it, get it back to you!
BLURB FROM THE PUBLISHER
‘The riffin’, the loudness, the drinks, the girls, the songs, the lyrics, the fights, the fuck-ups and the wins, plus much much more…
The Rock Science Motörhead Game includes 1.600 questions on the band’s history. From Lemmy’s first steps into rock ‘n roll to the awakening of the monster that Motörhead is today.
”About f***ing time.” Phil Campbell
Round up your friends and play the loudest trivia game in the world. Three levels of difficulty and tense betting means that the novice can give the hardcore fan a fair fight.
”I’ve had a fun life for sure. Playing this will help me remember it!” Lemmy’
WHAT YOU GET
Your EUR 59,90 will buy you the Rock Science Motörhead Game, a trivia game of 2 to 6 players mostly about Motörhead the band. The game includes the following components: the rulebook in English, 1 Game Board, 200 Playing Cards (including 1.600 questions), 6 Custom Pawns (Jim Dunlop Motörhead Picks), 1 Motörhead Game Poster, 1 Motörhead Game Sticker, 12 Betting Chips, 1 Die, and 2 Custom Card Holders Resembling Lemmy’s and Phil Campbell’s Amps.
In case you have been living in a cave and have never heard of Motörhead, you can either read Wikipedia, or alternatively watch this.
The objective of the game is to complete a full lap around the board (20 spaces). On his turn a player will first roll the die to see which category of questions he will answer. There are six categories: Song (name the song or related trivia), Album (name the album or related trivia), Rock the Song (hum one song from the two provided without singing any lyrics), Rocker (information on a personality of rock ‘n roll), 50/50 (mixed themes with two alternatives provided) and Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll (gadgets, guitars, festivals, anecdotes and myths). The questions are additionally broken down by difficulty in three levels: Poser, Fan and Scientist. It is not necessary to set the difficulty level from the beginning of the game. Each time the category and theme are read out, the player can choose at which level he wishes to play. If a player answers the chosen question correctly, he moves on the board 1, 2 or 3 steps forward, depending on the difficulty of question asked. Rock the Song is an exception: the player moves 2 spaces if the song he is humming is guessed correctly, along with the player that guessed it.
Apart from the rather specialised theme, in the Motörhead Game players can bet on how others will do. After the category and the theme of a question is announced (i.e. Song: Singles, or Song: Lyrics) the other players bet with their poker chips on whether the player will answer the question correctly. Those who bet correctly on whether the player will answer or not will move one space on the board. No betting is allowed in Rock the Song however.
The 50/50 category also plays slightly differently. On the Poser level all is nice and dandy if the answer is not found, however on the Fan and Scientist levels your pick backtracks on the board by 1 or 2 spaces respectively.
Finally, there is an optional rule about not winning through betting and the player having to answer one final question on Poser level.
The game is kind of a misnomer since not all 1.600 questions are about the band and its antics. In Rock the Song for example one of the two songs is always a Motörhead one, the other one however ranges from The Beatles to Alice Cooper and from Buddy Holly to Frank Sinatra. Idem for the Song and Album categories, with questions about Metallica, Queen and Johny Cash amongst countless others.
THE STRONG POINTS
If you like Motörhead – I rephrase. Seeing how much you like Motörhead and music of the highest quality, this is a nice silly game with loud music on the background and a couple of Jack Daniels on the table. Most of the questions are or are not that hard to answer, depending on whether you are a Eurovision pub quiz genius or a metalhead with just an average exposure to loud music. I was kind of wondering ‘will they really be able to fill a game with 1.600 questions about a single band?’, but in the end I am happy they did not even try.
The questions stand their ground most of the time and provide a wealthy amount of trivia. I know now that Lemmy hates onions, that he once worked for a homosexual man with the incredible (yet true) last name Brownsword, or that a fossil, Kalloprion Kilmisteri, bears his name. Go me!
The twist of betting on a trivia game is well executed. Not everybody could have the same knowledge about the band or loud music in general, so betting on somebody else’s successes and failures makes the game roll faster and not become a drag.
The art and the design of the game reeks of Motörhead, which is another way of saying that it kicks arse. This is truly a collector’s edition. The chips, even though cardboard, feel as if they were stolen from a casino. There are gold trimmings everywhere, while the card holders that receive the cards after unpacking look like Lemmy’s and Phil’s amplifiers and open like a hard pack of cigarettes.
The cards that contain the first three questions are easy to sort out from the ones containing the other three in case they get mixed, due to the Q or A circle on the top of the card being black or white. Clever.
THE WEAK POINTS
Rock Science tried to make the game easy and approachable but I feel they missed the target in quite a few of their 1.600 questions (namely: a few hundred ones). The three difficulty levels don’t mean much. I approached them as if the difficulty level literally means what it says, e.g. you must have some, no matter how minor, experience in loud music to answer a Poser question, be a metalhead to dabble with the Fan ones, while being nothing but an addict/collector for the Scientist level, yet that is not the case. Some of the questions are not just misplaced by difficulty, they are outright silly. The weirder part is that by asking the same but in a less condescending way the quality could be vastly improved. Examples of LOL questions include, per level of difficulty, the following:
Poser: ‘The name of the singer in the Rolling Stones?’ [my 80-year-old aunt knows that without knowing anything about rock], ‘Mikkey Dee of Motörhead plays a drum solo or a theatrical piece on their live performances?’ [in a rock band, hmm, let me guess], ‘Which songs are mostly released as singles: the most popular or the least popular?’ What??? This last question is mind-numbingly dumb. I thought that singles become or don’t become popular after being released, not before, but hey, what do I know!
Fan: ‘Mikkey Dee supports Frölunda HC from Gothenburg, on a sport that is played on ice. What sport is it?’ [if you can’t put ‘HC’ and ‘ice’ together, I pass], ‘Guitarist Brian Robertson of Thin Lizzy has been a member of another very loud rock band from London and played on their 1983 album ‘Another Perfect Day’, which band is it?’ [Seriously? The most ignorant of posers knows that this is a Motörhead album, and even more so, anybody with half a brain would have guessed that it might just be Motörhead on a game about, well, Motörhead], ‘Brian May guested Motörhead’s 25th anniversary at Brixton in London in 2000. What instrument did he play?’ Ahem. Pardon me if I am getting too analytical here, but what is more likely: to remember that Brian May, the guitarist of fucking Queen, a band that has sold five to ten times more records than Motörhead, and we are talking some 150 – 300 million albums here, is remembered as a guitarist because of precisely that thing, or because he played on Motörhead’s 25th anniversary at Brixton in London in 2000?
Scientist: I will omit the numerous True or False type of questions that take all the joy out of a difficult trivia question that only a few people would know, and go straight to this: ‘The fossil Kalloprion Kilmisteri was discovered by paleontology professor Mats E. Eriksson when he worked at Lund’s University. In what country is Lund University located?’ Apparently in this ‘scientist level’ question the hardest thing to ask a Motörhead fan is where Lund is located. It would have been funny if it weren’t offending.
The price is a major weak point. Collector’s item, understood. The whole idea behind Motörhead however is being loud and standing out for the small guy. The guys listening to the band seldom wear suits or wave bricks of cash. This game should have been way more friendly to them.
The Motörhead Game is not for everybody. A (pricey) must for the Motörhead collector, even pricier conceptually for the average fan and a mind-blowing WTF for the non-headbanger, it fully epitomizes the Motörhead attitude: ‘If you like our music, buy it. If you don’t, fuck off!’
To find out more about Rock Science and their Motörhead Game take a look at http://rockscience.tv.
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Antonios S (copyright text)
Reviews for board, card games, miniatures, RPGs, gaming accessories and everything that’s related to tabletop gaming, for those who are so inclined.
Rock Science (copyright photos)
The world’s heaviest rock and metal game brought by a group of rockers for a gaming rock experience.
RPG.net (original review)
Role-playing game website. It includes sections on wargames, tabletop games and video games, as well as columns on gaming topics.