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CAN’T STOP THE TURTLES

Reviewed by Herb Levy

CAN’T STOP THE TURTLES (Winning Moves; 2-4 players; about 30 minutes; $10)

 

Although it may be hard to believe, Sid Sackson’s best selling game (at least, according to Sid) is not Acquire, not Bazaar, not Kohle, Kies & Knete, not Venture nor any of the games from the fabled 3M line. Sid’s bestseller is a clever little dice game called Can’t Stop (featured in our Game Classics series back in the Winter 1997 GA REPORT)). Regrettably, Parker removed this gem from its line over 20 years ago. But the good news is, Can’t Stop, albeit in a new guise from a different company, is back as Can’t Stop the Turtles.

Can’t Stop the Turtles comes in a small, hard plastic case that holds a deck of cards, four dice, score pad, a supply of chips, pencil and rules. Evidently inspired by the European penchant for bizarre themes for games, the abstract nature of the original Can’t Stop is exchanged for the oxymoron of racing turtles!cantturtleTo begin, the deck of cards is spread out. Each card contains a number, from 2 through 12. The player on turn rolls all four six sided dice. From the roll, players may combine two sets of two dice to make a number, placing chips on the matching turtle cards. For example, if a roll of 2, 3, 3 and 4 is rolled, a player may combine the 2 and 3 (to make 5) and the second 3 and 4 (to make 7) and place a chip on the 5 and 7 turtle cards respectively. An even better play would be to combine the 2 and 4 and both 3s to earn TWO chips on card number 6. A player may continue to roll and place chips as long as he is able to combine at least ONE combination that is still viable. When it a number not viable? When the matching number card is won and out of the game!

As a player rolls and chips mount on cards, a player may choose to stop and mark on the score sheet the number of chips he has placed on a particular card or cards. Should a player place the required number of chips on a card (an amount that varies from only two for cards 2 and 12 up to seven for card number 7), that player claims that card and both that card and number are now out of play. Should a player be unable to place a chip on a card on his turn, his turn is over and all chips placed on that turn are lost! The first player to successfully claim three cards wins the game!

Can’t Stop the Turtles makes some changes to the original to make the game more forgiving. Now, there is a “Wild Turtle” on one of the dice (replacing a “1”) that can be used to represent ANY number. This allows combinations to be more easily created. Also, it is generally easier to “win a race”. In the original game, the 7 column was 12 spaces long. Here, only seven 7s are needed for the win. Presentation is a trade-off. The original edition used a beautiful hard plastic board and nice colorful plastic pieces. This edition is easier to transport and the hard plastic case certainly can survive the hard knocks of travel. For those die-hards who prefer the older style of play, it really is no problem to adjust the game to the original standard.

Any time you get the opportunity to play a Sid Sackson game, it is a golden opportunity as Sackson games never disappoint. Now, gamers get a second chance at enjoying a terrific dice game that has, unfortunately, disappeared from American game store shelves for two decades. When you race to the game store to get Can’t Stop the Turtles, everybody wins! – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Herb Levy


 

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Fall 2002 GA Report Articles

 

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