Thrift Treasure: Space Checkers

Thrift Treasure: Space Checkers

I’ve had a lot of fun trying out abstract games from the 80’s and 90’s through our Thrift Treasure series of game finds. And this week is no exception, well except for the fact that it isn’t an old one. Space Checkers from Wiggles 3D was just issued in 2012! It’s always amazing to me to find newer games already on the shelves of our local thrift shops.

Not every thrift store find is a gem. Space Checkers by Wiggles 3D turns out to be only a close encounter instead of one that's a must-have. - SahmReviews.com

Once again it looked like the game had hardly been played, if at all. For $1.88 we could hardly pass! And the opportunity to play a 4-player version of checkers (and in space!) made it an instant buy!

Not every thrift store find is a gem. Space Checkers by Wiggles 3D turns out to be only a close encounter instead of one that's a must-have. - SahmReviews.com

Each player has a set of twelve custom-colored spaceships (UFO’s) that begin in their home area. The object of Space Checkers is to capture 10 of your opponents’ ships before any other player does the same. Capturing is done via a traditional checkers move of jumping one ship and landing on an empty space on the other side.

Not every thrift store find is a gem. Space Checkers by Wiggles 3D turns out to be only a close encounter instead of one that's a must-have. - SahmReviews.com

But movement is quite a bit different. Unlike traditional checkers, this game includes two dice. One yields the number of spaces you may move while the other results in a color which dictates the direction of movement. You choose which one you are commanding and move it in the direction of the color rolled (diagonal or straight) for the number of spaces rolled on the other die.

This is where things get a bit tricky. The rules are very incomplete about what constitutes a legal move, especially in regards to direction. If you’re in front of green and roll green, do you move straight towards it? Diagonal towards its center point? Do you choose?

Not every thrift store find is a gem. Space Checkers by Wiggles 3D turns out to be only a close encounter instead of one that's a must-have. - SahmReviews.com

Also, do you stop moving after a jump? Can you do multiple jumps in a turn? Getting your ship to the opposite side of the board unlocks the “wild area” where you can ignore the direction result and move in any direction you wish. Hitting the edge of the board also warps you to the other side, a quick way of transversing the playing area.

Not every thrift store find is a gem. Space Checkers by Wiggles 3D turns out to be only a close encounter instead of one that's a must-have. - SahmReviews.com

Space Checkers has the manufacturing quality you’d want in a family game, but sadly is lacking on the rules. Maybe a set of house rules or fan-created ones would make it play much better. That’s not to say it is a bad game, but one that feels unfinished. At least it has cool UFO’s to play with!

You really don’t have to wait to find a copy at your local thrift store as it is available on Amazon for under $10 shipped! Wiggles 3D does have other (better-known) titles in their library. Maybe the next one we look at will be much better!

Scott

About Scott

A former manufacturing executive, Scott now balances his family life with ownership and backend administration of websites such as SahmReviews.com, GiftCardCollector.com and a number of other online properties. He also is an occasional writer and full-time board game fanatic.

19 comments on «Thrift Treasure: Space Checkers»

  1. Jake says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever found a “complete” game at at thrift store. There’s always at least one important piece missing.

    1. Scott says:

      They’re there if you look hard enough. I’d say about 50% of the ones we look at are complete.

  2. Michele says:

    Sounds to me like rules should be written for this game. I’d not be surprised to hear you have already made up a few!! I would probably like this checkers type game but might get confused without a firmer set of rules.

  3. I used to find the best kept Board games from thrift shops or Charity shops as we call them and My children were thrilled to bits to be taught games their peers knew nought about!

    We made up some rules to spice them up lolol…they do grow so fast!

  4. Oh my goodness this is so much fun I need to buy this game soon we enjoy game night every Wednesday =)

  5. Myah Duque says:

    This game is the ultimate game night game!!!

  6. Elizabeth O. says:

    This looks like a lot of fun! It’s been a while since we had a game night, this would make the kids excited! I love the space concept, there’s not a lot of board games that would consider this.

  7. This sounds like fun. My nephews and nieces will be interested in this board game.

  8. Lexie Lane says:

    This sounds like a fun game. It’s almost summer and the game nights will be back soon. My kids will love this game.

  9. That sounds like fun, and at a bargain price! I hope they release something like Space and Ladders, haha. Too bad there aren’t any rules that came with it but I’m sure there are some online.

  10. You always find the best games in the thrift stores. This game sounds really fun.

  11. Rosey says:

    Ha, this is one I’d love to own. I’ve never seen it until now, but that one looks awesome! The retro theme sold me. 🙂

  12. This looks like a really fun game. I was always a huge fan of different types of checkers. It is so much fun, and I would certainly say that $1.88 is a complete steal!

  13. James says:

    Very cool!

  14. Nuno Santos says:

    Looks really fun!

  15. Jim says:

    I think I’d be pretty good at this game! I’ll have to find it

    1. Scott says:

      We recently saw a bunch at Half Price Books!

  16. Deb says:

    I need replacement dice

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