Cardboard Children - Luchador: Mexican Wrestling Dice
Days after an excellent Wrestlemania, is it not a great time to review a brilliant little wrestling dice game? YES! YES! YES! Let's take a look at LUCHADOR: MEXICAN WRESTLING DICE!
I love the wrestling. I've loved the wrestling all my life. I've promoted two shows in Scotland and wrestled in one of them, in front of 1500 people. It was really really sore. I love the art of wrestling, the storytelling of wrestling. I made a short art film about wrestling for Channel 4 here in the UK.
I love wrestling so much. I love the WWE, and always will. I loved All-Japan and Pro Wrestling Noah. I loved WCW for a period. I went absolutely crazy for Hustle. C!! C!! C!! In Glasgow, we have a company called ICW which is one of the best indies of all time – and my pals wrestle there and they are all lovely people.
I love wrestling. I love Kenta Kobashi. I love the Taker. I love Stone Cold. I love and miss Mr Perfect. I love HBK. I love Ric Flair. I love this Dusty Rhodes promo.
I love it all.
My 8 year old daughter is the world champion in my house (in more ways than one). She holds a little cardboard strap that she won while playing LUCHADOR. Let's take a look.
LUCHADOR: MEXICAN WRESTLING DICE
First things first – this game comes with a RING. An actual cardboard ring that you can build up and finish off with some elastic ropes. Yes, you'll have a squared circle right there on your table.
There are four dice for each player, in blue or red – y'know, for the blue corner or the red corner. There are also green dice, for damage, and yellow dice, for pinning. And then a big black die that is saved for the special moves and finishers.
The game comes with a bunch of character cards, and little card standees that represent the characters. Every character has a bit of fluff, a bit of backstory, three special moves and a strength and a weakness.
Okay, so when the bell rings – I like to go “DING DING!” - each player rolls their four dice into the ring. Here's the first cool bit – any dice that fall out of the ring don't count. Of those still on the mat, players compare the results. Now, if any players roll a PIN result, and their opponent is too strong to pin at the moment, these results can be re-rolled. Now, remember – any dice that fall out of the ring don't count, so you can use these re-rolls to try to knock your rival's dice out. Oh hell yeah.
So, once dice are at their final facings... Hits can convert into damage. Blocks cancel Hits. And Counters turn an opponent's Hit into YOUR Hit. Pins can only be used if the opponent has been weakened enough.
Hits allow you to roll the green damage dice. You can roll one for each Hit that goes through. A damage die has different moves on the faces, each doing a different amount of damage. You can trade two of those green dice, though, for a roll of the big black LUCHADOR die. That die lets you attempt to roll for your special moves, for massive damage. You can also end up injured though, and stunned for the next round, losing a die. It's a risk, but this is for the title – whatcha gonna do?
Okay, so – pinning. Once you get a character's health low enough, they become pinnable. This is when you can use your Pin results properly. For every Pin result you get to roll the Pin die. The Pin die can make you successfully pin your opponent, it can make you fail, it can stun your rival, or it can allow you to play to the crowd, restoring a point of your health. WHOOO! Strutting around all like, y'know – WHOOOO!
KICKOUTS are AMAZING. Once pinned, the player whose shoulders are on the mat needs to roll their four dice three times, trying to get a total of three block or counter results. After every roll you shout “ONE!”, then “TWO!” and for the final roll - “THREE!” and if the blocks or counters haven't appeared, that's the match. If the pinned player gets all three block/counter results on the first roll – OH BOY – the pin gets REVERSED and the attacking player now needs to kickout.
Seriously. How good is that? It's where the game gets all “ONE! TWO! OOOOOOOOH! KICKOUT!” And all “ONE! BAH GAAAAD! BAH GAAAD! IT'S REVERSED INTO A ONE! TWO! NOOOOOOO! NOT LIKE THIS! NOT LIKE THIS!”
The winner is the first to pin their opponent or to just batter the shit out of them like The Beast Incarnate.
And that's really the game. There are rules for tag matches too, with dice in different colours so players 3 and 4 can jump into the action. It's REALLY FUN.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Luchador: Mexican Wrestling Dice is such a fun game. It's light, easy to learn and full of exciting thrills and spills. If you really get into it, commentating as you go, roaring with the kickouts and trash-talking your opponent, you are going to have a fantastic time with this bad boy.
The characters in the game are great, and their different strengths and weaknesses alter the rules in interesting ways, giving each character a little bit of flavour. The cardboard ring is just COOL. The game comes with little cardboard belts – ALSO COOL. And you can actually get pretty good at using your dice to knock your rival's dice out of the ring, Royal Rumble style.
It's also not a difficult game to modify. You could easily create character cards for your favourite wrestlers. In fact, here's a link to a thread where that kind of thing is already happening.
What else is there to say? Don't sing it. Bring it.
Come get some.
To not get this game would be... shameful.