Doris Matthäus / Frank Nestel

Publisher: Doris & Frank

G@mebox Star



Beware ! Running Hedgehogs !

"Igel Ärgern" is certainly one of the cutest games ever released by Doris Matthäus and Frank Nestel. Already before opening the box the player´s eye is captivated by the hedgehog-drawings by Doris Matthäus all over the box.

The game itself is easy and fast to play. Each of the up to six participating players receives a "family" of 4 hedgehogs. One in a turn, the players place their hedgehogs at one of six starting positions for the hedgehog race. Here already the first problems come up, since the more players are participating the more crowded the starting places become. Piles of hedgehogs may be created, and only the uppermost hedgehog of each pile is allowed to move at all....

After all players have placed their "families", the race begins. In a turn, a player rolls a die to see on which of the six lanes a hedgehog will be moved. Then, before moving a hedgehof one space forward, the player may move one of his own hedgehogs up or down one lane. After this vertical movement, the player looks at the lane for which he rolled the number and moves one of the hedgehogs there. Other than with vertical movement, a player may move any hedgehog here - one of his own or a member of another "family". The game is won by the player who first succeeds to move three of his hedgehogs into finish.


You think that sounds easy ? Well, it would be manageable if there weren´t the black "hedgehogging places" - one in each lane. If a player moves the hedgehog of another family into one of these places (normally no one will go there on his own will !), the hedgehog will be captivated until all the other hedgehogs in the game are at least in the same vertical row. Only then he will be released and can move on normally. You can imagine that these places are used quite strategically - so players tend to give the leading player a slight push and - oops - one or two of his hedgehogs find themselves in one of these dark places. Now they have to wait some turns, a time in which other players will take their opportunities to get as many hedgehogs past them as possible.

Despite its easy rules, "Igel Ärgern" is one of the most entertaing games which I have played for quite some times. Already with two players it´s really great to play, and with the total of six players quite a strategic element is added to the game. And it´s always great fun to make another player´s hedgehog jump into one of these dreaded "hedgehogging places".

"Igel Ärgern" really has a quite high addiction-factor, but Doris & Frank have even taken care of giving the game some variety. So the game includes a complete booklet with 40 (!) variant-rules for the game, found by the many fans of the game and offering gaming fun for months. One variant offers the possibility to play with more than one family, giving more hedgehog to less players; or in another variant the "hedgehogging places" turn into Black Holes, absorbing unlucky hedgehogs forever....

This game is a gem - it should belong to the collection of any fan of german games !

Looking for this game? Visit Funagain Games!

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Copyright © 2006 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany