Flash Point: Fire Rescue

I got to play Flash Point: Fire Rescue at the weekend as one of Russ’ Essen acquisitions and at first I wasn’t too enamoured with the fire fighting theme or the fact it was a cooperative game: my preferred games involve negotiation, deception and/or conflict, but I got stuck in and had a pleasant time.

As usual with co-op games, bad stuff happens and the players have to utilise their resources in a way that maximises the efficacy of their skills before more bad stuff happens. Like Pandemic, if bad stuff happens in a place where there is already bad stuff, it expands outwards. In Pandemic the virus spreads, in Flash Point the fire explodes outwards, destroying the buildings infrastructure, blasting fire fighters in the face and incinerating the building’s inhabitants.

Bad stuff.

The object of the game is to rescue seven inhabitants whilst keeping the flames under control before the building collapses, so the players choose characters with varying skills that will make the job easier. For example there is a lady fire fighter with sexy eyes and pouting red lips who is good with an axe for chopping down walls to get in and rescue people. (Feel free to insert your own chopper-handling joke here. E.g. I love a woman who knows how to handle my chopper. Etc). The down side of her is the more she chops, the more unstable the building becomes (Did the Earth move for you too darlin’? etc).

Each character has a number of action points and each turn the players utilise these points to move/rescue, put out fires, drive the fire engine (choo choo!!), drive the ambulance (nee naw!) or perform some other action to help prevent disaster. Then the smoke spreads randomly and if it touches existing fire… FWOOOM!

There is more to the game than this but in essence that’s how it goes, and whilst I’m not too fond of co-op games, Flash Point proved to be a pleasant distraction after an evening of our usual cut-throat mayhem. Superficially there didn’t appear to be much difference in the basic mechanics from Pandemic, but having played them both but little, I’m not really able to judge, nor is this a review, just my thoughts on a pleasant game which I’m sure fans of co-op games will love.


One Comment to “Flash Point: Fire Rescue”

  1. Update: after a chat with Andy I realised that this game is less prone to ‘follow the leader’, a.k.a. The Pandemic syndrome, where there is one optimal path and the most charismatic/loud/annoying player will choose the path and everyone else obey their orders.

    Possibly this is because there are more than one way to do things, or possibly because the optimal paths have yet to be worked out. Time will tell.

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