Sunday, February 3, 2008

Loopin' Louie

New game number two for the year is Loopin' Louie. It's a very simple dexterity game for kids but it's a new game and I played it so it goes on the list.

The game has a central hub, atop which sits a long arm that can move freely in an up and down chopping motion, as well as rotate under battery power. At the end of the arm is a small plane, and in that plane sits the goggled Louie.

Four legs come out of the base at right angles to each other. Little sloped holders sit on these legs, each big enough to hold three small discs the size and shape of poker chips. Various pictures of chickens adorn these discs.

Left to his own devices Louie and his plane will happily circle around on the end of the arm crashing into the nearest disc in each segment. As he does so, each disc is tipped sideways a little, causing it to drop into a holder below, and causing the next disc to roll down and takes its place.

Of course, players aren't keen for Louie to knock off their chickens, so to aid their defence, each player has a little weighted see-saw. Pressing on the end nearest to the player will cause the other end to shoot upwards and, hopefully, send Louie's plane safely over the chickens as he passes by.

The game continues with players attempting to not only send Louie's plane flying well above their own chicken discs, but trying to get just the right amount of oomph to bring it down on another player's discs. Hit the plane too softly and it will land before the next player's defensive see-saw. Hit it too hard and it'll fly harmlessly over their chickens. In fact, it's possible to hit the plane with sufficient force to send the whole arm to a vertical position and have it come back down on top of your own discs on the next revolution.

The last player left with any discs is the winner.

It was a fun diversion for a little while. We played a few games while we were waiting for the "proper" games to start when more people turned up. It plays very quickly, and even more so if you accidentally jiggle the device and send your own chicken rattling to its demise without the assistance of the plane (a rather easy thing to do).

Loopin' Louie is obviously designed for young children and they'll get a lot of enjoyment from it, as long as the rather fragile looking thing doesn't break. If I had kids, I'd consider getting it.

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