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HECKMECK EXTRAWURM
is an expansion for the ZOCH zum Spielen familt strategy game HECKMECK am Bratwurmeck by Reiner Knizia
Riner Knizia and Doris Matthäus are responsible for the game and artwork in both boxes

 

To begin with this is an expansion and thus it is of no use to you unless you have the original game. HeckMeck is a 2-7 player game playable by anyone who can roll dice and read (as in add up) the results.

ExtraWurm adds 2 Extra Worm tiles, an 11 and a 13 both valued at one worm point towards scoring, but with some other helpful features and bonus possibilities. It also brings Extra Point Worms (round tiles) into the game for the first time. These are made of the same hi-impact ivory coloured ceramic tiling of the Worm tiles, as are the two new Worm tiles.

In addition to these pieces there are Five Specials, a Golden die that has only One's and Worms, a Raven that is dark as the night and as hard to touch, a sneaky White Weasel, a Sitting Hen and a Red & White striped Canned Hen. The animals are made of wood and are coloured and lightly detailed.

The game is set up as usual with the Worm tiles for the HeckMeck box being lined in a row from #21 through to #36 but now with #11 and #13 prefixed to the beginning of the row, adjacent to the #11 tile. The Five Special Pieces are then positioned on top of the following Worm tiles: #11 #21 #23 #25 and #27 and the new Bratworm tiles positioned to the side in reach of all.

As usual the players take turns in rolling all the dice and utilising the Greed / Yahtzee style mechanic where one number (or Worm) is put aside from the roll and the other dice rolled again, and so on until a good result has been made or a failure occurs. When collecting the dice the player may never take a number (or worm) that they have already taken that turn, so for example if the player takes 2 4s in the first roll he cannot take any further 4s this turn. To gain a Worm tile players have to roll the exact number as shown on the tile, stopping their turn mid-way to achieve this. However there is a catch, to count as a correct number the dice collected must contain at least one worm and that adds 5 points per worm to the tally. Example: a collection of 2 x 2 (4),  a 3, (7) and 3 x 5 (22) would not allow you to pick up the #22 Worm tile, but a collection of 2 x 2 (4),  a 3, (7) and 2 x 5 (17) and one Worm (22) would. Tiles won are stacked in the order in which they are taken.

 

If at any time a player collects at least two dice showing a "1" then they are immediately awarded a Bartwurm tile (valued at 1 point at the game end).

The Special pieces are collected with the tile that they are found on and are returned to the lowest value empty Worm tile if they are lost. Each Special Piece has, as you would expect, a special effect. Players may only ever hold one Special piece at a time and thus have to relinquish one, their choice, if there is a possibility of them having two.
The Golden Die is added to the owner's die roll as an extra die, giving them more chance of achieving a higher total.
The Raven cannot be collected but instead flitters around until it cannot land but collecting the Worm tile with the Raven also gives the player a free Bratwurm.
The Sitting Hen protects the stack of Worm Tiles collected and can be returned instead of losing the top tile. If it sits on an 11 or a 13 then nothing happens because they cannot be threatened and removed from a player's stack.
The Weasel is very useful as you can use it once per turn to reroll the dice you just rolled.
The Canned Worm counts as a worm if you need it to, so if you have rolled all 8 dice and have not managed to collect a worm then you can add the Canned Worm and Five points to your collection.

As a fast paced game HECKMECK is a wonderful game to play. These new additions bend it away from the family game that it really is and head it towards the path of the Gamer. Introducing 7 totally new components at the same time to a family game seems like asking a bit much especially as they all have different effects on the game. This is why I suggest the expansion is aimed towards bringing Gamers into what is otherwise a fun frenzy of family dice rolling. The new components do make a big impact on the game though whether they make it better or just different is going to be a matter of choice for the players. The #11 and #13 effects are certainly more inclined for Gamers, and I personally like the BratWurms. Gamers will no doubt play around with them and either include all or some of the new pieces until they are happy - being able to add them as and how they wish opens many new possibilities to the basic gameplay and can excite and entice players of the basic game to be adventurous one part at a time if necessary. In all this is a neat and clever expansion for an already neat and clever, and excellently produced, game.

The game is set up as usual with the Worm tiles for the HeckMeck box being lined in a row from #21 through to #36 but now with #11 and #13 prefixed to the beginning of the row, adjacent to the #11 tile. The Five Special Pieces are then positioned on top of the following Worm tiles: #11 #21 #23 #25 and #27 and the new Bratworm tiles positioned to the side in reach of all.

As usual the players take turns in rolling all the dice and utilising the Greed / Yahtzee style mechanic where one number (or Worm) is put aside from the roll and the other dice rolled again, and so on until a good result has been made or a failure occurs. When collecting the dice the player may never take a number (or worm) that they have already taken that turn, so for example if the player takes 2 4s in the first roll he cannot take any further 4s this turn. To gain a Worm tile players have to roll the exact number as shown on the tile, stopping their turn mid-way to achieve this. However there is a catch, to count as a correct number the dice collected must contain at least one worm and that adds 5 points per worm to the tally. Example: a collection of 2 x 2 (4),  a 3, (7) and 3 x 5 (22) would not allow you to pick up the #22 Worm tile, but a collection of 2 x 2 (4),  a 3, (7) and 2 x 5 (17) and one Worm (22) would.

© Chris Baylis 2011-2015