Road Trip Dice Game: Getting There is Half the Fun

Road Trip Dice

Just can’t wait to get on the road again?

Race while creating the best dice combos in

Road Trip Dice Game

Old green station wagon pulling out onto the road. (National Lampoon's Vacation)
Hopefully we can do better than the Griswolds!

Do you enjoy the freedom of open roads and pausing to explore landmarks along the way? Have fond memories of taking road trips with family or friends? Or were your road trips right out of the Griswold family vacation playbook with a little bit of chaos just for fun? If you checked any of the boxes above, you’re ready for the Road Trip Dice Game; a quick roll & write experience. Create dice combos to visit locations while racing to the finish.

Road Trip Dice Game is designed by Andy Barker, published by Dice Camp games and plays two to five players, ages six and up.

Setup

Give each player a score sheet, four gas chips and a pencil. Determine first player by whoever rolls the most roads.

Road Trip Dice Game scoresheet, pencil, station wagon token, 6 dice, 4 gas tokens
Let’s go!

Gameplay

Each player’s turn consists of three phases: Roll, Travel, and Mark.

First, players roll dice up to three times. Dice can be saved after each roll, creating a travel plan for that round.

Die Results

Roads – Place these in a row during the travel phase at the cost of one gas chip per die. Each road not linked with a landmark or slowdown advances your progress down the highway 1 space.

Gas Stations – Place these anywhere in the road. When passed, refill your “tank” back to four total gas tokens.

3 road dice with 2 attached landmarks, flat tire at the end of the row
Flat tire!

Landmarks – Link these to roads to score bonus points. When linked, fill in an accessible landmark on your score sheet, but do not advance down the highway. Only one landmark can be linked to each road. Exception: Adventure Bonus spaces require three landmarks linked to a single road. Landmarks linked to consecutive roads (shown by red dotted lines) provide increasing bonus points.

Slow Down –Placed after the first road die. The road is impaired here, so you don’t progress a space down the highway but still lose one gas chip.

Flat Tire – Placed at the end of the row. Take a flat tire token and lose a turn.

On the Road Again

2 gas station dice followed by 3 road dice with a landmark placed
Out of gas!

In the Travel Phase, place your dice to create a row with combos as described above.

Each road costs one gas chip and all must be placed even if it means running out of gas. However, gas stations prevent your tank from running dry; pass one and refill your tokens. Should your tank run empty, walking for gas is the only option. You now must place two gas stations back-to-back before placing any more roads. This refills your tank and you may continue onward.

Homeward Bound

After making travel plans it’s time for the Mark Phase. Record your travel progress on the score sheet. Cross out roads, color in landmarks, and mark any bonuses achieved.

Speaking of bonuses, there are two you can earn during your trip. The Outfitter is achieved by linking a road and landmark together on the earliest spaces, rewarding you with a spare tire and tank of gas for later use. Unlock the Adventure Bonus by linking three landmarks to a road in the 500 range; this scores 1,000 points at game end.

Play continues clockwise until a player reaches their finish space. The round continues until all players after the start player have completed their turns. If more than one player reaches the finish line, those players compete in a roll off for roads. Winner takes first place; all others are runners up.

Road Trip Dice Game score sheet
We’re ready for the big time… is it ready for me?

Final Scoring

Calculate final scores using the score chart on the right-hand side of the sheet.
1st Place receives 1,500 points.
All other players get +50 per road crossed off.
Then add all your bonus points. The player with the highest road trip points wins!

Impressions

Road Trip Dice provides a unique game experience, fusing gameplay and theme like nothing I’ve ever tried before. As you travel down the highway you’ll need to maintain a balance between visiting landmarks and making forward progress to stay ahead of your opponents. The puzzle of the game is in working with what you roll while keeping an eye on fellow travelers. Missing out on a first-place finish will cost you 550 points.

3 road dice. The last one in the row is connected to 3 landmark dice.
Go for that Adventure Bonus!

Replayability is high due to the luck factor in dice rolls, but luck alone won’t win the game; smart travel planning will! Even if you don’t finish first, having bigger chains of consecutively linked landmark bonuses can boost your points. What I really found interesting in this game was the gas tank management. You can play it safe and refill before necessary, or you can gamble your way to a potential advantage by pressing your luck and hoping for the right dice at the right time.

As you round the curve in the highway, tensions increase as drivers start to focus in on the first-place bonus. The game has no player interaction but the fun factor is in the race; and it doesn’t hurt to watch others get flat tires and lose a turn while you surge ahead. No need to pull over to help them either. Eat my dust!

We love the retro aesthetic, evocative of vintage Americana advertising design. The color choices for tokens even match real-life signage, and the first player marker has, of course, a station wagon on it.

You Can’t Travel Alone

dice: road with landmark, road, road with landmark, gas station
Movin’ right along…

The game is lacking is a solo play mode. I want to play Road Trip Dice on my lunch hour. This could be introduced with some type of day tracker where you get a certain number of turns. If you cross the finish line before running out of days, you get the first-to-finish bonus. However, the true spirit of the game is competing in the race for points and enjoying it with others.

One final suggestion for families: introduce player interaction through storytelling. Announce what landmark you’re visiting (real or made-up). “I’m stopping to see the world’s largest ketchup bottle!” or “world’s largest ball of yarn.” This can be especially fun when playing with kids to engage their imagination. We found Road Trip Dice Game is a keeper and I look forward the trips ahead.

Highlights

  • Awesome retro style artwork.
  • Puzzley, with a bit of push your luck game play.
  • Quick to play and easy to teach.
  • Major replayability.
  • Highly portable for road trips. It can easily fit in a sandwich bag and kept in the glove box. Yes, we’ve tried!

Find it at the Dice Camp website for about $15, or ask for it at your local game store.

The Family Gamers received a copy of Road Trip Dice Game from Dice Camp Games for this review.

Road Trip Dice Game
  • 9/10
    Art - 9/10
  • 8/10
    Mechanics - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Family Fun - 8/10
8.5/10

Summary

Number of Players: 2-5

Age Range: 6+

Playtime: 30 minutes

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