Stephen Nurse, Australia, 2020
Here is another simple free-download game by Stephen Nurse, from Melbourne. As his previous game Cycle Tour, with which it shares some features, the game has been published in his Modular Bikes blog. The name of this game is inspired by a real event, the OzHpv Challenge. You can read a report on the 2011 race by Stephen himself here.
The downloadable pdf provides the rules, cut-up riders and the main feature of this game, cut up six-sided dice with custom numbers. You can also download STL files to make your own dice with a 3D printer if you happen to have one near.
The twist in this otherwise simple dice game is that every bike is favoured in a different type of road by having a better/faster die assigned. However, since there are six races in the game (Road Race, Slalom, Off Road, Hill Climb, Shopping Race and Time Trial), biases will be evened out by the last race. The winner is the player with the lowest total after adding up the scores for each of the six races.
If you do not feel like printing and cutting up the dice, you can always buy blank dice (every games developer keeps a handful of those just in case) or just modify regular D6 dice with stickers,
Cut-up riders are also provided. They are basically the same riders included in the Cycle Tour game. If you want to download the files to print them in 3D (licensed under the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution license), you will find them here.
As you can see, most of the bikes in the game are recumbent bikes, which were rejected by the UCI as far back as 1934 but are faster than regular racing bikes in some (or should I say most?) conditions. In case you want to know more about these bikes, Stephen Nurse has not only made games that feature them but also written a book about them.
What is not included in this game is the board. The rules simply say "Find a track to run the races on, this can be the outside squares of a chess board (28 squares) or the 4-part CYCLE TOUR printable board (52 squares)". Of course, you can find more tracks to print in the "Make Your Own Game" section of this site. However, do not get too excited about downloading tracks: let me warn you that the odds of an underdog rider beating the favourite change with the length of a track; for the game to remain balanced, you have to use the same track for all six races.
Click here to download the game
Description written in August 2021.
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