25 April 2022
A solid dose of dice-chucking zombie fun
Last One Alive is a quick and light dice game from Champions of Midgard designer Ole Steiness. Using a zombie apocalypse theme, the game sees players rolling dice to battle the undead, equip themselves, and direct hordes upon neighbouring players.
Each turn has the active player rolling four dice of their choice plus a number of zombie dice equal to the ‘apocalypse level’. Any ambush results are assigned in front of them whilst standard zombies are dumped straight upon the player to the left. Depending on what was chosen, remaining dice will dish out damage, weapons and other items, alongside barricades used for deflecting further zombies onto neighbours. To avoid death, a player must be zombie-free at the end of their turn.
After an admittedly slightly awkward rules teach, it soon becomes apparent that there’s a few tricks in this diminutive box keeping it feeling fresh. The game cleverly offers interaction without the usual potentials for take-that bullying, yet still has every players’ turn matter to the group. You never know, you might inherit some of those zombies piled upon the poor soul two or three turns before. Furthermore, the gradually increasing apocalypse level ramps up difficulty whilst still escalating the fun. You may be under greater threat but more dice to roll equals more tactile joy and more risk to others. Finally, there’s an appreciable depth to the turn by turn decisions of what dice to choose and when to use items.
Dodging both the simplicity of Steve Jackson’s Zombie Dice and the table presence of King of Tokyo, Last One Alive’s dice-rolling antics comfortably lurk somewhere in between. And whilst this purgatorial placement between super quick filler and light game-night staple might see it hitting the table less often, in the right situation it’s still a solid dose of dice-chucking zombie fun.
PLAY IT? YES
Designer: Ole Steiness
Publisher: ARES Games
Time: 15-25 minutes
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