There was a time that if you picked up a board game based on a TV show, it would be awful; all the money would have gone into obtaining the license, and none into the design of the game. Either that or it would be a thinly disguised re-theme of an existing game.
There were exceptions. Star Trek has had a number of good games based on it – Star Fleet Battles being the classic, re-imagined as Federation Commander.
Then Battlestar Galactica came out. A totally original game, with expansions, based on the show; and showing that the designers completely *got* the show. Playing it felt like living in an episode.
Then Firefly, currently my favourite game. Again a fairly original design (some people say it has some resemblance to Merchant of Venus) and the show inhabits the game to the very last counter.
Meanwhile there have been a series of Star Wars games that I have not played, but are ranking rather well on the charts.
But a game based on the old kid’s puppet show Thunderbirds? 50th Anniversary Edition? Surely that’s going to be dire, no?
Apparently not. It is designed by Matt Leacock, designer of Pandemic, and has some similarites. It also has some wonderful Thunderbirds-shaped playing pieces, and a 7.8 ranking on BoardGameGeek. Oh, and did I mention it was by Matt Leacock, King of the Cooperative Game?
This came up on the Amazon Price Drop Facebook Group, and after checking out some reviews, I ordered a copy at a bargain £24.99 inc. delivery (RRP £57). 4 hours later, and the Amazon Prime copies are all sold – the price is now back at £35.45.