Pocket Sub is the latest game from designer Darrin Horbal published by Alley Cat Games. It sits 2-4 players, plays in around 10 mins, and recommended from ages 8+.
This review is based on the PnP play version offered on the KickStarter campaign page.
Pocket Sub is a quick to play strategy game where the aim is to maneuver your submarines and have the last sub standing whilst laying mines and trying to force your opponent into the mines.
Light Rules Overview
Setup is quick, each player takes the subs, command centre and mines of their colour. The 8 map tiles are shuffled and laid out in a pattern dependant on player count. Players then place their command centres on the map and then their 3 subs.
Each turn the current player must move one of their subs fully utilising the three movement points and lay a mine in one of the map sections the sub has been in this turn, failure to complete this results in your sub being destroyed.
Standard movement costs one but moving into rocky regions costs two as does moving between deep regions that allow you to move between certain tiles. Mines can not be placed in deep regions or on your command centre region, the command centre acts as a haven from the dangers of the mine filled ocean. Moving into a region with an opponent’s mine destroys both the mine and sub, ending your turn in a region with your mine ends in the destruction of both as does moving your sub into the region of an enemy sub.
Once a player is down to their last sub this becomes their only hope and spurred on by this they can move into regions with opponents subs and destroy them without being destroyed themselves.
– Nice unusual theme
– Small foot print
– Quick to teach, setup and play
– I think some of the options and patterns of play became predicable*
*That said the rule book references a different region type / tile layout to the demo version so that could be less of an issue at production level add to that the expansion offered in the campaign looks to add more variety also.
It’s a neat game with good execution I personally found it a little light but there is also a time and a place for a light weight game. Some of the group I played with compared it to tic, tac, toe saying it was the advanced edition which I don’t think is unfair comparison and not to be taken as a negative. So if a light weight nautical game of logic sounds like your cup of tea head of to the KickStarter page linked below.