On the Rivet

On the Rivet: The Race for the Champion’s Stripes (formerly called Visions of Rainbows) is a card-driven, semi-cooperative strategy game about taming the chaos inside the peloton.

You’ll need to work together with rival teams because your opponents will be pushing and pulling your riders along with them. The more work they do for you, the more energy you can save and the more fatigue you can avoid. But if you want to win, you have to find just the right time to break your alliances and break away.

On the Rivet is not about achieving top spot on the podium (though it helps). Your goal is to manage a team of all-stars, climbers, sprinters and domestiques and finish all of them in as high a position as possible, because time is aggregate: if you sacrifice your team for one rider, it only takes an extra second or two to drag you down the leader board.

And with a fully reconfigurable game board, you can guarantee each race will be totally unique.

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Play cards featuring the colorful language of the sport, and take advantage of special tactics on each one. Go fast and suffer hard in the Pain Cave, cheat the power drain with a Sticky Bottle, get into an Aero Tuck on the descents or snap the rubber band on your competitors.

And with a fully reconfigurable game board, you can guarantee each race will be totally unique.

Keep your eye out for a Kickstarter, coming mid 2020. I’ll be printing a minimum of 100 copies, with the hope of fulfilling orders by the holidays.

In a nutshell

The game mechanics are pretty easy to learn, but still offers a lot of strategy. On each player’s turn they must:

  1. Play an Action card
    This activates a rider and moves their linked line. Take advantage of terrain bonuses and special abilities if you can!
  2. Flip the active rider from Available to Unavailable.
    Every rider must take turns making moves.
  3. Apply fatigue, if there is any.
  4. Draw back up to a hand of 5.
    With any luck, you won’t be the target of a randomly appearing event!

That’s it! Quite simple, right? However, there is room for lots of strategizing and deal-making.

The finer points

  • You’ll have a team of 3-6 riders. Each player will be take turns activating one rider and moving their concurrent line forward.
  • You’ll have to decide which Action cards to play based on movement points, terrain, special abilities and amount of damage.
  • Make sure you manage the amount of damage each rider is taking. The harder a rider works, the more damage they take.
  • Position yourself in advantages sides of the road so you can work together with other players to help move you forward. This will help you avoid taking damage.
  • All riders will only be activated once per round. Make sure no one gets left behind.
  • Events will occasionally appear at random. Avoid or deal with them when they happen.
  • Pick the right time to play Tactics cards.
  • Decide if or when to rescue dropped riders, or whether or not to reduce damage by dropping back to the team car.
  • And choosing whether to challenge for bonus points for a better score.

Video: Watch an intro to the rules.

It’s a semi-cooperative game. If you want to succeed, you’ll have to work with other players. But you’ll also need to climb the ladder and make sure your riders are in the best position, then make your attack at the right moment in order to win.

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