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The Dead Eye

Designed by Simon McGregor and published by Pleasant Company Games, The Dead Eye is a solitaire card game but it's quite unlike any of the multitude of other solo games that are out there. It's described as 'an adventure card game for one player' and the premise is that you've landed on an inhabited but inhospitable alien planet...

To play The Dead Eye, you'll have a draw deck with cards that generate heat (bad) or juice (good) and you'll need to play these cards to deal with the various Encounters. Succeed in an Encounter (ie: get a good result) and you'll benefit from salvageable parts that you may subsequently be able to use as tools to help you with future Encounters. Fail a task and you'll lose a card from a deck labelled 'Hope' or 'Strength'. The good news is that the Hope or Strength card may be added to your draw pile so could potentially help you later on; the bad news is that the Hope and Strength decks each have only five cards in them, and if either deck runs dry then you lose the game.

The Dead Eye inevitably involves some push-your-luck decisions but tho' you can be dependent on the turn of a card, it's not a game of pure luck: you know what cards were in your starting deck and if you keep track of what cards have already come out then you can play the odds. The Dead Eye then is very much a solitaire game for canny card counters. It incorporates rules, bags and card markers for saving a game in progress and, as a bonus, the game comes with a 3D comic to help set the scene.

But we've left to last the USP of The Dead Eye, and regrettably it's one that we can't really showcase properly in a Board's Eye View 360. The dystopian alien world is marvellously depicted by Rob van Zyl and it's presented too in 3D. The game comes with three pairs of the requisite red/green 3D glasses. It sounds like a gimmick but it's not silly, and it works! Put the glasses on and the game really pops! The cards are designed so that you can still play without wearing the 3D glasses but donning them definitely adds to the immersion.

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