Gaming khet-board-game

Published on December 19th, 2012 | by Greg


Add Lasers To Your Holidays! Khet 2.0: The Laser Game

You’ve probably seen your fair share of board games. All of the little pieces, the money, the dice, all to play a game that is pretty much the same each time. Games like chess feel a bit old hat, fun and challenging and strategic but all too easy for games to be imbalanced. And besides, wouldn’t it be better if you could just shoot lasers?

That’s the promise of Khet: a two-player game that feels a bit like chess, but with lasers. There are a few types of pieces, most with angled mirrors and each with their own movement rules, and two semi-fixed laser turrets. Every turn you move or rotate a piece and fire your laser, removing any piece that is hit in a vulnerable location. The game ends when your king, or pharaoh, dies. The theme is fun, with Pyramids and Scarabs, Anubis, and the Sphinx lasers, and the pieces look and feel nice. You might face the occasional mis-alignment with multi-bounce laser chains, but it feels complete (although a Beam Splitter add-on is now available).

We like the strategic balancing, though it can take quite a while for the strange tactics to become clear, and it’s pretty simple for a sucker punch to strike even a decent player unaware. That means that new players still have a shot though, and we’ve seen some unusual and interesting combinations form. The starting positions of the pieces aren’t fixed, either, leading to some neat ways you can modify the game- a few different options are suggested, and they each require a complete recalculation of gameplay.

Like “en passant”, there are only a couple of weird catch-rules that might seem weird at first: some spaces on the board are restricted to one player or another, and repeating a board position three times in a row allows a player to declare a draw. Beyond those, though, the basics are straightforward. And it’s a fun real-world application of physics; you’ll have to get more familiar with how mirrors work to understand the game. Plus, it’s perfectly safe (and cats love it too).

Available now, it’s a perfect last-minute gift for any board game lover. Winner of MENSA and “Toy of the Year” awards, Khet is aimed at ages 9+, and expect to spend around $36 online or in stores.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Appleā€™s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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