GTM #210 - Lazer Ryderz
Reviewed by Rebecca Kaufeld

The crowd’s screams become a frenzy as the Ryderz fly by, leaving trails of red, blue, and yellow in their wake. Beams of light illuminate the racetrack as they zigzag their way towards a Prizm, two Ryderz veering towards one, the others speeding off into the distance. The Sheriff’s shouts are lost in the din, and her steed strains to go faster as the Shark torpedoes past, headed straight for the glowing pink checkpoint. Right as its fins cross the first boundary...

...the screen fades to black, leaving only those fateful words, “To be continued….”

~ The Backstory ~

Welcome to Lazer Ryderz! If it had the chance to grace your screen, it would have been a cult classic. Now, an almost legendary racing scene unfolds on your gaming table as you and three friends send four main characters on the ride of their lives: victory and everlasting glory await the greatest Ryder of them all!

~ Setting the Scene ~

One of the most unusual aspects of Lazer Ryderz is that there isn’t actually a board. Instead, the entire tabletop (or floor, or wherever you prefer to play) becomes the arena, allowing characters some freedom to choose their direction and speed.

The goal: cross three Prizms (checkpoints) to turn them into their own color.

The problem: general movements and turns are limited… until you crash.

The good news: like most beloved cult classics, the main characters have to survive until the credits. After crashing, your character will re-spawn with most of their moves returned.

So… that’s the backstory. Ready to race?

~ Start Your Engines! ~

In this world, Ryding is an art form. It’s a perfect balance of speed and maneuvering: too slow and you lose, too fast and you can’t turn.

Each player receives a set of movement pieces that represent the “gears” on their Speedometer. Not only will these show how speed affects your performance in the race, but they also become the wall of light, illuminating the track where you’ve already been.

Side Note: these do actually act as walls. Run into them at your own risk, for you will quickly find yourself at the Start line all over again.

Movement is simple: move up or down one gear, pick your piece of track, and lay it down. If it’s a turn, roll the die: turning at these speeds can be tricky, and you may find that going straight is a better path after all…

~ Claim a Prizm ~

Each Ryder’s goal is to claim three Prizms before anyone else. Each Prizm, a glowing diamond-like entity on the field, acts as a checkpoint: race through it, and it turns to match your Ryder’s color.  Miss it… or ride halfway through it… and you might be in trouble. There’s always someone right behind to claim it if you fail.

~ The Plot Twist ~

For more experienced Ryderz who crave more challenges than the arena of color-coded walls, there are also various rule modifications (nudging pieces, specific guidelines for oddly-shaped tables, etc) and mysterious Power Prizms available for play.

Power Prizms add character abilities: for example, the Lazer Shark can play his fastest Straight piece as he zooms out onto the field, and the Super Sheriff can shift one opponent’s speed up or down to her heart’s content. The Phantom Cosmonaut phases through other Lazers, and the Galactic Waveryder banks hardcore through a difficult curve on his wicked awesome surfboard.

And with that… On your mark… get set…

Four contenders… one winner. Only one Ryder can withstand the race.

Good luck.


Fast Facts:

  • Plays: 2-4 Ryderz
  • Duration: 30-60 Minutes
  • Ages: 12 and up
When a whirlwind of whimsical words beckoned from worlds away, Rebecca knew she had to follow. She fell into a rabbit hole of metaphors and cliches, mixed with more similes than water drops in a storm. Somewhere along the way, she picked up a love of games that would use her words to create beautiful reviews, and that's where she is today.