Mahé is a game by Alex Randolph, published by franjos Spieleverlag. It is for 2-7 players. In this game, players take on the role of turtles trying to lay their eggs on the island of Mahé. The player that can lay the most eggs will be declared the winner.
To begin, the board is placed in the center of the play area. Each player chooses a colored turtle and places it on the raft next to the “1” space on the board. The cards are all shuffled and placed face down on the space with the large “7” on the board. The top card is flipped face up. The first player is decided and is given the 3 large dice. Play now begins.
On a player’s turn, they will begin by rolling one of the three dice. The player will then move their turtle in a counter clockwise direction around the board. They will then decide if they want to roll the second die, moving the newly rolled number of spaces. They then decide if they would like to roll the third and final die, moving the rolled results of it. The thing is, if at any time the total of the numbers rolled are higher than 7, the player sends their turtle all the way back to the raft. The player can stop at any time, leaving their turtle sitting wherever they land. Turtles can pass over other turtles along the way. However, if a player stops on a space containing another player’s turtle, the player places their turtle on top of the other player’s turtle. Their turtle will be carried piggyback around the board on the player(s) turtle beneath them. The top most player decides if the lower player rolls a second or third die. If the player rolls more than 7, then both the turtles are sent back to the raft. If a player makes it all the way around the island to the “21” spot, they will collect the face up card, placing it face up in front of themself. They will then flip over the next card. This all continues with players pushing their luck and moving their turtles until the last card is taken. The next turtle to make it to the “21” spot moves their turtle onto the beach where the giant “7” is printed. They earn that many points. The game is then over. Players add up all the points from their egg cards. The player on the “7” spot adds those points to their total. The player with the most points at this time is the winner.
The pieces for this game are very cute and sturdy. The large turtle pieces are wooden and very brightly colored. The dice are equally large. They are quite a bit bigger than your normal dice. The board has a very artistic island design with numbered turtles swimming around it. The cards are really nice and show a large number with a clutch of turtle eggs. The pieces all give a very childlike feel and look very nice. My daughter really loves the large turtles, especially the pink one. The artwork is really cute and light. All the pieces are big enough for even small hands to manipulate quite well. It’s a very nice looking game.
9 out of 10
The rulebook is designed with several different languages included. It is laid out really well and is easy to read. There is nothing difficult about the rules at all. There are several examples of how to play written into the rules. There are special rules for playing with less than 4 players. It mostly involves players using 2 turtles instead of only one. There are also a few variants included in the rules as well. Overall, everything is written up really well. The only problem for me is that there are no pictures except on the front and back cover of the book. The front cover has the turtle image from the cover of the game while the back cover shows the game in play. I really like a bright, colorful rule book full of pictures but this didn’t have it. Thankfully it only takes a few minutes to read through so there’s not much call for pictures. It still would have been nice though.
8 out of 10
This game is really cute and fun. It has a definite press your luck feel to it. Knowing when to roll the next die and when to stop is key. Of course there is some luck involved as well with the game being basically a dice rolling game. The large turtles and cute design really kept my daughter entertained. Of course she didn’t like it when she would have to send her turtles all the way back to the raft. The game is fairly short. It only takes about 15-20 minutes to play. It’s a cute little filler game that is fun to play. I really like the idea of piggybacking turtles. Being able to land just right on another turtle and have them help carry you for awhile on their turn is a really neat idea. Once again the decision to press your luck and keep rolling comes into play though. It’s a really simple game to learn and teach. Pretty much anyone can play this. It’s a very family friendly game that everyone will enjoy.
8 out of 10
Mahé is a light dice rolling game of press your luck with a turtle island theme. It’s a fairly short game to play with most sessions lasting no more than 20 minutes. The artwork is light and cute. The over sized pieces from the turtles to the dice are really nice looking. My daughter really loves the big pieces. The game is very much press your luck with a dice rolling mechanic. It’s a family friendly game that can be played by pretty much anyone. Fans of dice rolling or press your luck games might enjoy this, especially those with younger kids. It’s a very cute and light game that the entire family will enjoy. We enjoyed it a good bit. I would recommend this game as a family style filler. It’s easy and fun.
8 out of 10
For more information about this and other great games, please check out franjos Spieleverlag at their site. The site is in German.