With MeepleLand and Unfair already in our collection, it’s clear we love the amusement park theme. That’s why when we found out about Danger Park, we were immediately excited. But in Danger Park, you don’t run an ordinary theme park. The park you bought has ridiculous designed rides, weird improvements and all kinds of danger. So instead of trying to save this park, you decide to earn back what you can before it get’s shut down. In reality this means you won’t fix broken rides, but might break them even faster to guide all the visitors to places they want to be. If breaking an attraction means a casualty or two, that’s just another minor inconvenience since you just earned some money again.
How to Play.
For the set up, place the park sign in the top of the big tray and place the incident marker on zero. Shuffle the ride cards and place rides under the tray equal to the player count in a single row. Also place on danger of the same type indicated on the card and place two patrons (visitors) on the ride. Place the remaining deck at the other end of the play area and place three rides face up to form a supply. Then shuffle the major policy cards, give each player two cards. The major improvement cards gives each player objectives in the game to earn some money at the end scoring. Each player can choose one card and discard the other. Separate the minor policies cards into four different kinds face up and shuffle all the improvement cards. Place one improvement card face up under each ride in the supply and place the remaining of the deck facedown under the rides. Place all the money, danger tokens and patrons close by and give each player eight ticket booths of the same color. Then each player chooses a ride by placing their ticket on it. Now you are ready to create some danger.
The game has four phases starting with the build a ride phase. On your turn, simply select a ride from the face up supply and place it in the park facing away from the park sign. You cannot place it diagonally and it has to be connected to a previous tile orthogonally. Once placed, add one danger of the type indicated on the card and two patrons. Don’t forget to place your ticket on the ride. Keep in mind that each ride tile also shows different exits. Patrons can only leave rides using the exits on the tiles, they can’t simply walk from tile to tile if there is no path connected. If you have build a ride, it’s time for phase two, the improvement. Take the improvement card that was placed underneath the ride you chose. This card will immediately take effect and the improvement will affect the park in a big way depending on your choice. Each card is self explanatory and will explain what it does. You might get to move all the patrons on a column or row for example. Always carefully consider what improvement will help you for the best or which one might harm you when choosing a ride in the first phase.
In phase three you will roll dice for all the patrons in your rides. Once all improvement effects are resolved, choose a ride to roll dice for and roll one die per patron on that ride. For each die roll higher then the total amount of danger on the ride, you succeed. If you have two danger on a ride for example, your dice rolls will have to be three or higher in order to succeed. If any roll fails, resolve the ‘on failure’ ability on the ride card if the card has one. Then add one danger of the ride’s type to the card. One patron for each failed roll will also exit the ride trough the paths connected. When patrons move, either trough failed rolls, improvement or maybe even abilities from rides, the player who owns the ride where the patrons move, will decide where they move to. Then again the patrons need to be evenly distributed among all connected paths if possible. The more valuable patrons will always move first, which means groups move first, then single patrons and lastly sick patrons. If a ride ever has five patrons, they immediately become a group. Patrons will always move to other rides if available. If this is not possible, they will be placed at the park entrance to enter the park once again in the next phase. If a ride gains four of the same danger tokens, or four different kinds of danger, the ride will close. The ride will be flipped to the closed signs and all patrons will exit. For every closed ride, also move the incident marker one space forward on the incident tracker. For every ride you own that closes, you may take a minor policy of your choice. If a patron becomes injured because of an ability or improvement for example, return it to the supply and also move the tracker one space forward.
Once you have rolled for every ride separately and faced the consequences. You finally get to earn some money. For each patron still standing on your rides, you earn one coin. A group patron will give you five instead of one. If there are any patrons standing at the park entrance, they will now enter the park evenly divided to the top row as you choose. If you are the last player in the round, resolve possible end of round effects from rides and move the first player token to the next player. Then add one vomit to each ride per sick patron located there. The final round will begin when there have been nine or more incidents and the incident tracker has reached the end. The player with the most money will win the game.
Playthrough of the game.
We were very excited to start playing danger park. The rules were easy to learn and the set up from the game looks nice on the table. But during the game, we found out Danger Park is not that easy as we thought. Every ride should be self explanatory. But in reality, we found that a lot of cards do not work with the rules in the rulebook. You have a ride where patrons don’t move when you have failed rolls for example, or rides that start with sick patrons instead of normal ones. The same counts for the improvements. Like an improvement who adds danger to each ride in a row or column, but also moves the danger to adjacent rides at the same time. We found the mini rules on cards are often not clear which results in a lot of discussion and confusion about how everything should go down instead of just playing the game. It created a lot of chaos and downtime that we think was really unnecessary. Unfortunately, even after a couple of games, we still didn’t enjoy the game a lot because of that reason.
That being said, if you like to mess with other people in games. Even if there sometimes is some confusion about how rides or improvements work, the element of messing with other peoples ride and moving the patrons is the best part of the game. Since everything evolves around earning the most money, you will always have to find ways to bring more patrons to your rides. If that means closing one of their rides by adding more danger trough improvements for example, than that is just a minor inconvenience for you in order to get more money. The art and especially humor on the cards is also well designed. Each ride has a disastrous name that fits perfect with the ability of that ride. Like the Nightmare Kid’s Boat Adventure for example, which has the ability to make all the patrons sick on this ride, but the ride itself is immune to vomit.
Danger Park is a strategic tile placing theme park game where you want to save the most money as you can in your already broken park. The goal of the game is to collect the most money by getting the most visitors on the rides you own. You will do everything it takes to make this happen, if that means you have to close a ride from an opponent so more visitors will come to you for example, that’s just a minor inconvenience. The art of the game looks good and especially the humor you can find on the cards are well thought off. If you like to mess with your opponents, this game might be for you.
We definitely see a lot of potential in Danger Park, but unfortunately the way the game is designed now, the rides and cards don’t fit well enough for us causing to much confusion and discussion instead of having fun with playing the game.