DESIGNER: Bernhard Lach and Uwe Rapp
# OF PLAYERS: 2 – 4
AGES: 8 and up
TIMES PLAYED: 6, with a copy I purchased
I am horrible at dexterity games. My hands aren’t steady, I can’t gently put that piece on top and I definitely don’t see that perfect spot to slide that piece in without causing a tremor. I often still enjoy them, though. Why? Well, they are usually still fun, even if things don’t quite go your way, and they are simple to teach to gamers and non-gamers alike. I was recently introduced to Drop It, a game that requires a minimum level of dexterity but otherwise provides that dexterity game experience.
The games is in a large square box. In the box is the vertical game board, four side pieces and two base pieces that indicate goals, nine wooden pieces in four different shapes in four different colors, score markers and a score track.
The main component of the game is the Drop Zone, which is a plastic piece with a narrow opening into which players take turns dropping pieces. In a four-player game each player has a set of identical shapes in their player color; in a three-player game each player has a full set of one color and a share of the leftover fourth color, and in a two player game each player has two colors.
On your turn you choose a piece from your supply and drop it into the Drop Zone, the large plastic board that is divided into eight zones, through the this slot at the top. Simple, right? Well, it’s not quite that easy; there are a few rules related to that.
- Your piece cannot touch any other pieces of that same shape
- Your piece cannot touch any other pieces of that same color
- Your shape cannot be touching any of the edges (side or bottom) that has a symbol indicating that same shape or color.
- Your piece must fully fit into the Drop Zone and can’t be sticking up out of the top.
Once you drop your piece in, you determine how many points, if any, you have scored. If you violated one or more of the above rules, you score zero points. If you didn’t, you score points equal to the highest level that your piece landed in (1 points for level 1, 3 for level 3 etc). In addition, there are small, medium and large circles printed on the zone; you get bonus points (3, 2 and 1 respectively) if your piece is touching any part of that circle.
The game ends after all players have played all of their pieces.The player with the most point wins; if there is a tie all players rejoice in their shared victory.
There are also several variants. In the Beginners variant, there are no restrictions on the edges, which would easily allow the game to be played by players younger than the recommended minimum age of eight. In this same vein is the Jokers variant; each player is given two joker tokens that allows the to spend a joker to ignore the landing rules for one piece and score full points. The Teams variant pairs up alternating players, who play their own pieces but score together and the Color variant, which restricts colors rather than sides on the edges.
MY THOUGHTS ON THE GAME
This is a very simple game, but it is also pretty fun. It’s harder than you think it is going to be, and there is some skill related to where and how you drop the piece into the zone, but it is still simple enough that I can easily teach this to non-gamers. There can be more strategy in determining when to play what piece, but not following that path doesn’t affect the enjoyment of the game. I’ve played with 2, 3 and 4 players, and with both children and adults, and all numbers and ages worked well. It also plays faster than 30 minutes in my experience, so it’s perfect as a filler between more strategic games as well for a family or non-gamer game.
THOUGHTS OF OTHER OPINIONATED GAMERS
Matt Carlson: I pulled this out recently and my family has been playing it practically non-stop. My wife isn’t much of a gamer but she loves the shapes and colors in this one. I like how all the kids (elementary to tween) can play it and be competitive. Recently I’ve played some vs games with my wife and was pleased that there was some longer term strategy I could employ (saving the right pieces, watching to see what she had left and trying to block, etc…) I’d rate the game as an “I like it” for me, but it is bumped up to “I love it!” since it is such a hit with my family it’s a game I can pull out anytime.
Greg S: I purchased this one simply from seeing a photo of it being played. I figured it would be light fun, perfect for family gatherings and parties…which it is! It is very simple and there is very little strategy or tactics, but still it is fun. Almost the definition of a perfect party game. If only it could accommodate more players.
Nathan Beeler: The pieces bounce more than you’d think they would. I’ve only played once, which isn’t enough to know if this introduces fun chaos or a frustrating inability to apply skill. I did enjoy the game though, and would happily keep trying to discover the answer.
Dale Y: I like Drop It – there is actually a fair amount of challenge given the restrictions of the placement rules, and I like the fact that the game setup is mutable – so that successive games feel a little different. As Nate noted, it’s actually quite surprising how much movement you get out of the pieces when you drop them – and I think that this gives a nice level of unpredictability to the game.
I love it!: Matt C.
I like it.: Tery, Greg S., Nathan Beeler, Dale Y
Neutral: James Nathan
Not for me: