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Road to Hollywood

There are a lot of party games out there for 6-10 players and they come in many forms. Some are cooperative, some competitive. Many involve pitching or storytelling and are played for raucous and often risquée laughs. None are quite like Road to Hollywood. That's because Road to Hollywood is a party game where the 6-10 players are working together to make a movie - not a boardgame analogue of a film but an actual movie that you can put up on a screen and watch.

It's an ambitious shared activity and it's made feasible by breaking crew and cast tasks down into manageable chunks that anyone can undertake. Open up the box and you'll find a set of smaller boxes, much like in a legacy game, except that there's no prohibition on opening these and peeking inside. Start tho' with the Production Notes. These introduce clearly the various tasks and refer the players to the designated boxes. There's a short 'Explainer Video' you should also download to a smartphone that helps ensure everyone is on the same page.

Speaking of pages, you don't need to worry that Road to Hollywood might require players to sit quietly or otherwise writing a script: the shooting script is already supplied, you're just required to define and specify an object of your choosing to be a prop that's focused on in the movie - your Maltese Falcon if you like. In addition to the Director, who'll be filming your masterpiece on a smartphone, the crew tasks include Costume, Location, Set Design, Make Up and Catering. These mostly involve scouting out where to film and scavenging suitable props. The box for the crew in charge of Make Up includes suitable face paint makeup and stick-on scars. In any event, all the crew tasks are clearly spelled out. The crew also double as the cast. Oh, and everyone has a very professional-looking lanyard to indicate their cast and crew roles: short of supplying a chair with Director printed across the back, this is a nice touch that adds to the role-playing atmosphere.

At the core of Road to Hollywood is the exceptionally well designed Shotlist. This is a ringbound book that storyboards the 43 shots that together comprise your movie. For each shot, it guides the Director, crew and cast as to exactly what they need to do. The Director uses a smartphone to record the shots in the Road to Hollywood app strictly in order and the app should then edit the shots together for youir finished product.

The Board's Eye View team had an advance copy of Road to Hollywood, and a band of aspiring thespians and mafiosi were eager to throw themselves into role, both in front of and behind the camera. We were thoroughly impressed with the package and the way in which every member of the cast and crew were eased into and supported in their tasks, and we had a great time setting up the early shots. Unfortunately tho' the downside of having such early pre-Premiere access meant we had to work with an app that's still in beta form and that meant the iPhone we were using for filming got rather hot and we struggled with frequent app crashes. So we only got as far as shot 15 and, sadly, we didn't end up with a complete movie, but we still had a whale of a time and it's left us all eager to have another crack at making our magnum opus when the app is fully signed off.

Road to Hollywood is on Kickstarter right now. Click here to check it out.

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