“Pente” was the very first 5-in-a-row game that I learned as kid. “KYRO 5” draws parallels as the object in both games are the same, though it does something that I haven’t seen done before (at least, in my experiences). Instead of just placing pieces to form five in a row, you’ll also be moving them around in a specific way. Before I delve any deeper into this game, I’d like to thank Nancy Davies, the Vice President of Salmon Borre Group, for providing me with a free press copy.
Pyramid Pieces – The game includes a total of twenty-four pyramid pieces, with half of them being blue in color while the other half is colored green.
Setup & Gameplay
To set up the game, each player takes twelve pyramid pieces of a particular color. One player is chosen at random to go first. You’ll also want to use a table that has a lot of space, since you’ll be placing these pieces and moving them around a bit. The object of the game is make five in a row horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. The first person to do so, wins the game.
In the beginning phase of the game, players will take turns placing pieces onto the table. It’s important to note that there are placement rules to observe. For example, when placing a piece, it must be touching another piece either at its side or corner. To put it another way, you cannot place a piece that isn’t touching anything.
If all of the pieces have been placed and neither player has formed five in a row, the game is said to be in “overtime”. Instead of placing a new piece, a player (on their turn) will choose one of their own pieces already placed and move it to another location of their choice. The same placement rules apply in that it must border something in its new location. You also can’t leave other pieces hanging so that they are separated from the main group. Players continue taking turns until someone wins in overtime.
The above doesn’t cover all of the rules found in the manual, but should give you an idea as to how the game is played.
The quote unquote “box” is an interesting one…that is, the game does away with one altogether. Instead of your usual square / rectangular box, the components sit on a giant pole. The pyramid pieces simply slide onto the pole, secured by a cork of sorts that screws into the top. It’s great if you have room off to the side in your board game closet, though it won’t stack well with other games in your collection. The components themselves were sturdy enough and functioned well. I would have prefered two colors more dissimilar than blue and green…perhaps blue and red, for example. Though, I must admit that the current color scheme does mesh well in terms of aesthetics when looked at from a distance.
The learning curve is incredibly light. It didn’t take me longer than a minute to explain the game to the kids, making it an ideal game for players of most ages. With that said, there’s a bit of strategy to consider when playing, especially in the overtime phase. The board is constantly changing, requiring both players to think ahead and anticipate possible avenues of exploitation. It’s similar to “Chess” in that the player who can think farther ahead and make fewer mistakes usually ends up on top. Players who just place pieces at random more than likely won’t even make it to the overtime phase of the game.
“KYRO 5” as a whole is a light, but strategic experience that is most certainly worth your time. I think it functions better as a family-friendly game as opposed to a competitive one…that is, you’ll get more bang for your buck playing this game with your kids as opposed to your arch nemesis. It encourages critical thinking, making it a great introductory experience for the more complex & strategic games out on the market. As such, I found “KYRO 5” to be both fun and educational…something that any parent worth their two cents would appreciate. In light of that, fifteen bucks (as of 10/9/13) isn’t a lot to ask for hours of entertainment, especially if you have younger kids looking for some one on one attention.
Final Verdict: 8/10
You can learn more about and purchase “KYRO 5” by visiting the following websites: