If you love chess and other strategy games, you be a huge fan of Laser Chess! Read our review of this new two player strategy game and decide for yourself!
We received a copy of this game to review. We received no other compensation, and all opinions are our own.
Laser Chess Review
This summer, Timberdoodle invited us to review Laser Chess, a new two player strategy game for kids (and adults!) Timberdoodle includes this game in their 7th grade curriculum kit, and my 7th grader enjoys playing chess, so we were happy to review this game.
How Do You Play Laser Chess?
Like regular chess, the goal in Laser Chess is to checkmate the king.
Unlike chess, you capture the king by hitting it with a laser. The pieces also move differently (1 block at a time for all pieces, except for the laser, which rotates but never moves). Switch tokens can swap places with another Deflector or Defender (red or blue) that is next to it.
There are five different ways to set up the board. This is the Ace setup.
This video offers a nice overview of the game.
Are Laser Chess Pieces the Same as Regular Chess Pieces?
Laser Chess pieces are completely different from regular chess pieces. Each player has 13 pieces:
- 1 King. You win by hitting the other player’s king with your laser.
- 2 Switches. Switches are two sided mirrors that reflect the laser 90 degrees. Switches can swap places with an adjacent Deflector or Defender. They cannot be eliminated from the board.
- 2 Defenders (to protect your king from incoming lasers). The front of the Defender looks like and acts as a shield. Laser lights have no effect when they hit the front. If a laser hits the side or the back of the Defender, you have to remove that piece from the board.
- 7 Deflectors. Deflectors have one mirrored side that reflects the laser 90 degrees. If a laser hits any of the non-mirrored sides, the piece is removed from the board.
- 1 Laser that always stays in the same spot (one corner of the board).
What Did We Think of This Game?
This is a game for serious strategists! There is a ton to think about with every move. For us, at least, it moves pretty slowly.
You really have to set up your play. Can you work out the path for this checkmate?
Here’s the answer:
Note: that was set up with a very cooperative opponent. We actually didn’t have very many successful checkmates in practice. My kids got frustrated before we got there.
Would I Recommend this Game?
If you LOVE chess and strategy and slow moving games, absolutely! This is a game that will challenge your mind and get you looking at a game board in new ways. This is a game that promotes spatial awareness while developing strategy.
If you prefer fast moving games, like my family, you’ll probably do better with another toy.
Have you ever played Laser Chess? What did you think of this strategy based board game?