The Qwixx Longo dice game is, unsurprisingly, a sequel to popular 2012 roll-and-write board game Qwixx. This version is for 2-5 players, takes 20-30 minutes to play and is suitable for ages 8+.
In this completely abstract dice-chucker, players use a shared pool of coloured dice to mark off numbers on their personal sheet. The key is to get as many marks in each colour’s row as possible. But you have to keep marking off spaces in numerical order – so you lose out on spaces you have to skip over.
In the small (roughly two packs of cards size) box you’ll find six eight-sided dice, four pencils and a pad of game sheets. Why they write 2-5 players on the box and then give you four pencils is anyone’s guess. At time of writing the game wasn’t yet on comparison site Board Game Prices – but I’m sure it will soon get wider UK distribution. Expect it to be £10-15, or get it now in mainland Europe for about 15 euros.
Teaching the Qwixx Longo dice game
Anyone who has played the original Qwixx will be on very familiar terrain with the Qwixx Longo dice game. Your player sheet has four rows of numbers in the primary colours; two going from 2-16, the others 16-2. They also have two lucky numbers (more on those later), a scoring table and four boxes to mark if you can’t do anything on your turn. If someone crosses off their fourth box, the game ends immediately. But it is more likely to end with a second of the four rows being locked.
Each round, the active player rolls the six dice. All players can add the value of the two white dice and mark that number on any of their rows – as long as it is to the left of the last number they marked in that row. Alternatively, if the roll matches one of your lucky numbers, you can instead mark off the leftmost legal (as above) number on any of your rows.
Lock it up
The active player (only) may also pair one of the white dice with one of the coloured ones, marking off the space in the corresponding colour’s row. If the active player doesn’t mark at least one number on their turn, they cross off one of their four penalty boxes.
The last two numbers in each row are padlocked. To gain access to them, you need to have marked off at least six numbers in that row. Once you have, if you get a number in the padlocked area you can mark it off and announce you’re locking that row. That coloured dice is removed from the game. And no one can mark off any more numbers in that colour. As mentioned above, if two rows get locked the game is over.
The four sides
These are me, plus three fictitious players drawn from observing my friends and their respective quirks and play styles.
- The writer: This is a simple and well-trodden push your luck mechanism. You’re constantly asking yourself, do I trade speed for efficiency? Here, it’s in its simplest form. Which makes it a great introductory game for new gamers. It feels as if one version of Qwixx should be in every game evangelist’s arsenal.
- The thinker: Nothing much to think about here! It’s OK for a filler, but there’s no strategy.
- The trasher: There’s no direct interaction in the Qwixx Longo dice game. But to play well you have to watch the other players closely. The game end can sneak up on you fast, so you need to be able to follow who can lock up colours. But even if they can, will they? You can be better off keeping it going a few rounds to pump up a high scoring row.
- The dabbler: I enjoy Qwixx, but I enjoyed Qwixx Longo a little more. After a few games, Qwixx was a little light even for me! Here, the slightly higher dice numbers (up to 16 rather than 12) make it a little longer, while the lucky numbers add a little more substance and an extra decision. Sure, there’s loads of luck. I had a game where one of my lucky numbers only came up once! But it’s short and social enough for that to be OK.
The most obvious question is, does this add enough to the original Qwixx to make owners add this to their collection. In the vast majority of cases, I’d say no. However, if you think the original is a little too short and needed an extra little something, this may be for you. However, you might also want to look at Qwixx Mixx, which adds new sheets for the original game that mix things up a bit.
The difference basically boils down to the slightly longer playing time and the lucky numbers. The game length didn’t bother me either way. I did like the lucky numbers. But this is very much going to come down to personal taste. You’re pretty much always going to use one if it comes up. So there’s no added decisions. But in a light fast game such as this I like a bit of extra drama when you see the result of the dice roll.
Conclusion: Qwixx Longo dice game
Qwixx was one of the first super popular roll-and-write games for good reason. And while the genre has matured significantly since, there’s still a place for these simpler games. They’re great fillers, and perfect for introducing to new gamers. Personally I like, but don’t love, the Qwixx line of games. And this one is no different. But they have a definite role (ho ho). So as I don’t already own one, I’ll be adding Qwixx Longo to my collection.