Get Out is another great board game from Cheapass Games
. It can be played by 2-8 players, and a two-player game usually takes around an hour. I haven't been able to get more players together at one time yet, but Cheapass.com suggests that the game time is 1-2 hours. Who am I to argue?
The plot behind the game is as follows:
You live with your parents. No bills, no expenses. You still get an allowance. Your friends are in similar circumstances. Something is a little odd though...
You actually want to get jobs. You don't want them so you can be responsible, or to avoid laziness (you're still as lazy and irresponsible as ever). No, you only want the job so you can get an apartment and get out on your own.
The goal is to spend 4 months living on your own (not necessarily 4 in a row, just four total.)
The board resembles a three-tiered Monopoly board, with a ‘Pay Day’ place in the same corner of each layer. Crossing this 'Pay Day' spot gives you money equal to the pay rates of all your jobs combined, but this is also where your rent comes due. The innermost 'Pay Day' has a special purpose, but I'll explain that later.
The outer ring of the board represents jobs that the players can take on to earn money. Once a player has obtained a job, they may cross the colored area at the top of the job into the second level of the board, which represents apartments/dorms/condos/etc. Once the player has an apartment, they may cross the colored area at the top of the apartment into the third (and innermost) track of the board, which represents the problems of having an apartment (like your landlord screwing you over, or buying new furniture).
The 'Pay Day' square of the inner track reads 'Pay Day-Get out'. Crossing this square represents having lived on your own, dealing with your new grown-up problems for one month. In crossing the 'Pay Day-Get out' square you get a life (actually you gain one life point). The first player to get four life points wins.
A new player's first instinct in this game is usually to get as many jobs as possible, and thus as much money as possible. That's easier said than done though, as every job you take reduces your chance of being able to move (since more jobs=less free time). Besides, the goal is to live on your own for four months, not get rich.
The game starts as a mad rush for each player to get one or more (usually more, early in the game) jobs, and usually continues to progress around the jobs track of the board until each player has passed payday a few times (and stockpiled a bit of cash).
Some gutsier players take the crappiest jobs and apartments to reach the inner track first, but that means dealing with more problems from their crappy apartment. More conservative players, myself included, try for jobs at Mendelbrot's furniture, the highest paying job in the game. The reason this technique works well is because Mendelbrot’s leads to the most expensive apartment in the game, which lets you into the inner ring of the board just one place from 'Pay Day-Get Out'. Most players choose the middle ground between these two extremes, getting one or two decently placed jobs with one apartment and dealing with some of the troubles of real life.
I found the game quite enjoyable, and give it a 4 out of 5 stars. The only thing that keeps it from being 5 of 5 is that Cheapass games prints their game boards on 8.5x5.5 inch card stock and ship the games without pawns, dice, and other gaming paraphernalia. On a $15 or $20 game, that would cost a game two stars, but since Get Out only cost me $5 plus shipping I'm a bit more lenient.