Designed by Sophia Wagner | Published by Devir Games
2-5 Players | 30 Minutes
The pantry is full and the mice are hungry. Race against the other mice families as you work to stock enough food to survive the winter in this dice placement game. Anything is fair game from stealing your opponents stash to letting loose the cat to scare everyone away. Be the first to stock away enough food to be the winner.
In Ratzzia, you’re rolling dice and placing them on the board to earn food. Knowing when to play and when to wait can earn you rewards and help you meet your goals sooner. The board features a number of different play areas to work into your strategy. Choose wisely as you attempt to be the first to gather 15 pieces of food into your bag.
HOW TO PLAY THE GAME
The game begins by altering the double layered board to fit the number of players. The game makes adjustments to keep play tight depending on the player count. The same applies to the number of dice given to each player. From there, players take turns rolling and placing dice in an effort to earn the most food. Earning the food isn’t enough as you’ll need to tuck it safely into your bag. Food left out in the open can be snagged by your opponents.
On a player’s turn they can place any number of their dice in one of the 10 board sections. Each section features a number of spots to place your die, many with different opportunities to earn food. Being the player to complete a sections gives that player additional rewards. When a section is completely filled, each die is returned to their owner and benefits and rewards are given.
The sections include multiple areas to earn food by placing specifically rolled numbers as well as sections requiring certain dice to be match others. Rewards are earned by being the last player to fill up a section with dice. These rewards give the game it’s personality and are essential to achieving victory. Rewards available to be earned are: being able to bump another players dice from a spot, earning a bonus die, earning multiple pieces of food, tucking a certain number of food safely into your bag, sealing half an opponents food and forcing players to send half their food to a neighboring opponent.
There is also a section called “The Cat” where filling the section will cause all played dice to “scatter” and leave the board. Once The Cat section is started, players will be required to play rolled dice of a specific matching number until the section is full.
Players continue taking turns, rolling dice and collecting food until a player has successfully stashed away 25 or more pieces of food in their sack.
COMPONENTS & ARTWORK
Razzia is a small box game with big time artwork and components. The artwork by Nuria Aparicio has a fun, whimsical, almost Disney-like feel to it. It’s silly and engaging and really brings the theme and mood of the game to life. All the components are top notch. The dual-layered board provides great spots to hold played dice. The multiple, different colored dice all look great together. The food tokens and food sacks all provide the game with fun elements to keep your hands busy.
If you’re a fan of dice-placement games, Ratzzia is definitely something you should consider. The freedom and strategy surrounding placing your own dice creates an engaging experience. The variety of rewards and food victories creates fun strategic choices. While a poorly placed dice may sit for a few rounds, more likely, you’ll receive your dice back quickly before you can spend too long lamenting any poor placement.
I love the theme and components here. I kinda feel like I’m playing Pixar’s Ratatouille the board game. iI’ll also openly admit this might be a game for me and not for you. I’m a sucker for games where you roll a big set of dice and hope for the best. I’m also a sucker for the artwork and duel-layered boards.
While it’s mostly luck, the game does provides an opportunity for one re-roll of any numbered dice so you can somewhat mitigate a poor roll.
The board has so many places to play you’ll find the question not being can I play, but should I play. Often holding off for a chance to complete a section and receive a reward might, in the midst of the race, be patience well spent.
Ratzzia is incredibly easy to teach and get to the table. Setup is simple and gameplay is a breeze. It’s certainly easy enough for kids, but like any worker placement with multiple choices, it can force you to second guess your approach. In fact, especially at higher player counts, I experienced a much slower pace of play that didn’t sit well with my younger kids. While the game boasts a 30 minute playing time – that certainly varied depending on the players at the table.
While there are plenty of places to play dice, the game can become slightly repetitious. If you’re struggling to secure your food in your bag, I could see frustration start to creep in. That being said, turns go by relatively quickly and the opportunity to score food on someone else’ s turn is highly appealing.
• The theme and artwork are top notch
• For a small game, the production is fantastic
• This is a simple game that only requires minimal teaching
WHAT’S NOT SO GREAT?
• Gameplay can induce overthinking and can feel repetitious at times
• It might not be quite simple enough for kids being drawn in by the artwork
• Stashing your food in the bag makes it hard to keep your tally forcing you to have to constantly peek in and dig around
Ratzzia brings a great production to the table. The mechanics are fun and the theme and artwork will draw you in. It doesn’t always play quite as smoothly as I’d like and can turn off people who tend to overthink their decisions. If you don’t like dice rolling games then you’ll probably want to skip this – since that’s pretty much what you do in this game. Overall, it’s a quick, fun, easy to learn game. The luck factor gives everyone at the table a chance to win, but doesn’t completely dictate the game. This is one that I really enjoyed and hope more people will get to experience.