Fix the DeLorean, make sure your George and Lorraine fall in love, and keep Biff from messing it all up, all before the clock strikes 10:04 PM!
Funko Games has released Back to the Future: Back in Time and were kind enough to send me a copy to play and review. So I cranked up the Huey Lewis, threw some pinball machine parts in a briefcase and got ready to play.
Back to the Future: Back in Time is a cooperative strategy game with dice rolling mechanics. The objective all of the players is threefold:
- Fix the DeLorean and get it to the clock tower in time
- Get George and Lorraine to fall in love
- Don’t disappear from reality
Each player controls their own character, each with a separate set of starting powers and a unique ability. What is nice about BttF:BiT is that your player board is as much your tableau of powers as it is your reminder card of what you can do on your turn. You start with 5 powers and gain more throughout the game.
Each power can be used once per turn and most can be used to either move or roll dice. During setup, various Challenges are placed around town. Completing these challenges requires rolling dice and hoping for the symbol noted on the challenge itself.
Completing these will usually grant extra powers, but sometimes also items, which can be grant all sorts of useful abilities and bonuses. However, every die also has the Biff symbol, which moves Biff around the board. If he reaches George or Lorraine, he begins to lower the Love Track.
The Love Track marks how much in love George and Lorraine are, but also how messed up the time-space continuum has become. At various points throughout the game, players will have to check how in love George and Lorraine are, if they aren’t in love, Marty and his siblings will begin to fade from reality. If they fade completely, the players lose.
To complete that objective and others, players will have to perform other dice challenges, in order to help George and Lorraine fall in love, gather DeLorean parts, drive the DeLorean to the clock tower and knock Biff out for a few turns.
Each of these special challenges function the same way, but have certain requirements, such as needing to be in the same location as George and Lorraine in order to help them fall in love, or be in the same location as the DeLorean to drive it into place.
If the players can manage to achieve and maintain all of their objectives at the end of the last turn, they win the game!
This game is tough! Or at least, I struggled with it. But I think that’s typical for the first playthrough of any cooperative game, before you start to understand the underlying strategies.
I ended up losing from having disappeared from reality, which is always a bummer. I think there were 2 major factors to my losing, first is I think having more players is a huge advantage. There’s a lot of things to manage and control and it’s difficult with only 2 players. Second, Marty kept getting Biff rolls EVERY TIME! It was awful!! So, chalk it up to bad luck.
Still, I really enjoyed the feel of the game. It really captured the theme of the movie. Plus, I really enjoyed the art style and the rulebook is a Tales from Space comic! How cool is that?!
Overall, I enjoyed Back to the Future: Back in Time. It does a great job of giving the players a lot of short term goals to achieve long-term objectives. It’s not long to play through and very simple to teach and understand, so it’s great for kids too. Plus, one mechanic I really liked is that winning “too early” doesn’t win you the game. All objectives must still be true at the end of the final turn, and with Biff causing trouble that’s harder said than done.
Back to the Future: Back in Time – $30 – Available Now
Doc Brown, Marty McFly, Jennifer Parker, and Einstein the dog were sent back to 1955. They must make sure that Marty’s parents fall in love before they have to drive the DeLorean to catch the lightning strike at 10:04 p.m. Even if you are able to get his parents to fall in love ahead of time, you must continue to complete objectives to keep Biff at bay and get the DeLorean in place for the electrifying end of the game.
- 2 – 4 Players
- 50 Minutes
- Ages 10+
Thanks for reading!