Board games have only been growing in popularity over recent years. With the constant production of new releases, there’s reason to love this medium. However, that doesn’t mean you should forget about the older gems like Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy.
Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy are multiplayer board games created by Rio Grande Games. Each game allows you to strategically build your own galactic empire. While both games are similar at their core, you rely on cards to get through Race and dice to progress in Roll.
The rest of this article will tell you everything you need to know about Race for the Galaxy as well as Roll for the Galaxy. You’ll get a better understanding of each game and be able to determine which one suits you best.
What Is Race for the Galaxy?
While many people enjoy Race for the Galaxy, it’s not quite as popular as it used to be. The reason doesn’t have to do with quality so much as age. Simply put, Race for the Galaxy was released all the way back in 2007.
Race for the Galaxy is a multiplayer board game that allows players to create a galactic empire. Using game cards, players develop their civilization both technologically and socially. This game requires two to four players and can be enjoyed by anyone 13 and up.
This is a great fast game that can be played when friends or family want a little bit of fun together, but the schedule isn’t necessarily wide open.
Playing through Race for the Galaxy takes less than 30 minutes. This depends on how many players are involved and the length of each individual player’s turns, but this is a game that is designed to go relatively quickly.
The word “race” isn’t used ironically.
When you’re playing this game, you’re racing against the other players, against the clock of others getting to their goals before you, and that leads to a fast exciting game.
While it might not be Tiny Epic Galaxies, this is still a truly outstanding game that has remained popular for a reason.
What Is Roll for the Galaxy?
Roll for the Galaxy was released in 2014 and is similar to Race for the Galaxy. However, there are a few key differences. Let’s expand on them.
Roll for the Galaxy is a multiplayer board game. Players use dice to create and grow their space civilization through technological and social advancements. The game requires two to five players and is recommended for anyone age 13 and up.
While detailed game cards are the backbone of Race for the Galaxy, Roll for the Galaxy uses dice. Dice represent different factors such as your empire’s population, the creators behind your civilization’s tech, goods, and more.
Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy Differences
While both Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy have many similarities. To start, they were both made by the same brand: Rio Grande Games. However, they are also quite different in many ways.
In case you’re having trouble distinguishing the two, here’s a table comparing and contrasting the features of both board games.
|Race for the Galaxy||Roll for the Galaxy|
|Number of Players||2-4||2-5|
|Average Play Time||Less than 30 minutes||30-60 minutes|
|Avg Player Rating||9.6 out of 10||9.6 out of 10|
|Number of Expansions||5||2|
Let’s see these different areas in greater detail.
Number of Players
Two to four people can play Race for the Galaxy at a time. While it’s possible to play with two people, the game is more enjoyable when playing with as many people as possible.
When playing with four players, the game will progress more smoothly and go by faster. Four people will go through more cards in a shorter period of time when compared to two people.
Two to five players can play Roll for the Galaxy. You can play the game successfully with only two players, but it might be more enjoyable to play with as many players as possible.
However, it might take longer to play Roll for the Galaxy with more players. You have to wait a while for each individual turn. Roll for the Galaxy doesn’t use cards like Race for the Galaxy does, so it might be more challenging to finish in a reasonable amount of time when playing with 5 players.
Estimated Play Time
Playtime is an important factor to consider when you’re thinking of buying a board game. Depending on the scenario, long playtimes can be either pro or con.
Race for the Galaxy is an excellent game if you’re looking for something quick. This game can be completed in less than thirty minutes, which is suitable for situations where you don’t have a lot of time to play.
On the other hand, the playtime for Roll for the Galaxy is approximately double that of Race for the Galaxy. This dice-oriented adaptation takes 30-60 minutes to play through. Its lengthy playtime is ideal if you want to pass more extended periods of time. But if time is something you don’t have a lot of, Race for the Galaxy might be the better option.
While Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy have their differences, they have the same average rating on Amazon. Race for the Galaxy has 4.8 stars out of 5, and Roll for the Galaxy also has 4.8 stars.
These ratings are considerably high and prove that each one of these games is quite enjoyable. These two board games have their fair share of pros and cons, but overall, they are excellent games for any strategy or science fiction enthusiast out there.
Play style is probably the most significant difference between Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy.
Race for the Galaxy is sold as a card game. This means that turns are played using cards instead of a board and dice. These highly-detailed cards are used to represent actions, goods, and people.
Roll for the Galaxy relies less on cards and more on the board and game pieces. In this adaptation, dice represent actions, goods, and people in a similar way to those depicted on cards in Race for the Galaxy.
While both options are different, neither play style is necessarily better than the other. Choosing which game to play is really a matter of personal preference.
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price
Price creates a big difference between Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy. Board games are an expensive hobby, so it’s always a good idea to compare the prices of games you want to buy.
Race for the Galaxy is a lot more affordable than its counterpart. Rio Grande Games puts the MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) at $34.95 for this particular product.
Roll for the Galaxy is a lot pricier. The listed MSRP for Roll for the Galaxy is $59.95, which is $25 more than Race for the Galaxy. However, with this increased price, you get a larger game with more pieces and longer playtime.
Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy Pros and Cons
We’ve established the differences between Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy. Now, let’s discuss the pros and cons that each game brings to the table.
Race for the Galaxy Pros and Cons
Here are the pros of Race for the Galaxy:
- Compact game size
- Uses cards to reach the objective, offering better visuals
- Good for small groups of people
- More affordable
- Great ratings on Amazon
- Lots of available expansion packs
Here are the cons that come with Race for the Galaxy:
- Fewer people can play
- Takes less time to play, ends relatively quickly
- Comes with fewer pieces (card-based, no dice)
Roll for the Galaxy Pros and Cons
Here are the pros of Roll for the Galaxy:
- Great for larger groups of people
- Large game size, comes with a lot of pieces (including a board, dice, and more)
- Long playtime makes it a great pastime
- Great ratings on Amazon
- Some expansions available
These are the cons that come with Roll for the Galaxy:
- Takes a long time to play, not suitable for time-pressed situations
- Costs a lot more than Race for the Galaxy
- Takes up a lot more table and storage space
- Not as many expansion packs available
Where Can You Buy Race for the Galaxy?
You can buy Race for the Galaxy from online retailers like Amazon. If you want to play on a computer or smart device, digital versions of this game are available on Steam, the App Store, and Google Play. You can also play it online.
If you’re interested in purchasing the physical adaptation, Amazon sells the Race for the Galaxy Card Game for an affordable price. This excellent game combines classic strategy with creative sci-fi concepts.
Where Can You Buy Roll for the Galaxy?
You can buy Roll for the Galaxy anywhere board games are available. Online retailers like Amazon sell it, but you can also purchase digital adaptations of this game on Steam, the App Store, and Google Play. It’s also available for online play.
If you’re interested in adding it to your collection, the Roll for The Galaxy Board Game is available on Amazon. It’s the perfect game for any enthusiast of science fiction, strategy, and civilization-building board games.
Can You Play Race for the Galaxy on a Computer?
You can play Race for the Galaxy on a computer. You can purchase a copy of its digital adaptation on Steam and play it on your PC.
Race for the Galaxy is also available as an app on the App Store and Google Play. Being a card game, its video game adaptation comes easy and doesn’t lose any content.
Can You Play Roll for the Galaxy on a Computer?
You can play Roll for the Galaxy on a computer. You can buy and download the digital adaptation on Steam.
If your PC can’t handle games, you can also buy Roll for the Galaxy as an app on Google Play and the App Store.
What Is the Objective of Race and Roll for the Galaxy?
The objective for Race and Roll for the Galaxy is to build the most successful galactic empire. Both games provide different ways to achieve this objective. You can make technological and social advancements to grow your space civilization.
While the rules for each game vary, both Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy have the same goal. They just use different methods to achieve that goal. For example, Race is a card game and Roll uses a board and dice.
If you’re a strategy lover, you might prefer Race. If you like a bit of luck in your games, then go for Roll.
Can You Buy Race for the Galaxy Expansion Packs?
You can buy Race for the Galaxy expansion packs. There are currently five different Race for the Galaxy expansion packs being sold by Rio Grande Games, including Xeno Invasion, Alien Artifacts, The Brink of War, Rebel vs. Imperium, and The Gathering Storm.
All of the Race for the Galaxy expansion packs are listed on the Rio Grande Games website. Some expansions are also available for the digital version of the game.
Can You Buy Roll for the Galaxy Expansion Packs?
You can buy Roll for the Galaxy expansion packs. There are currently two expansions available: the Rivalry pack and the Ambition pack.
Expansion packs for Roll for the Galaxy are listed by Rio Grande Games on their website. Right now, the digital version doesn’t offer expansion packs.
You can purchase the Roll for The Galaxy Board Game: Rivalry Expansion on Amazon. It comes with hundreds of individual game components, including custom dice, custom die faces, game screens, and more.
You can also purchase the Roll for The Galaxy Board Game: Ambition Expansion on Amazon. This expansion pack also comes with many components, including new starting tiles, dice types, objective tiles, and more.
Race for the Galaxy and Roll for the Galaxy are multiplayer science fiction board games created by Rio Grande Games. Both games center around the creation of a galactic empire. While both have similar objectives, Race for the Galaxy uses cards and Roll for the Galaxy uses dice.
Roll for the Galaxy takes a lot longer to play than its counterpart, but it allows you to play with more people. Race for the Galaxy is much quicker.
Although both games have their pros and cons, they have equally high ratings and serve as excellent forms of entertainment.
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Proud to embrace the locally created moniker of “Corrupt Overlord” from one of the all time great Lords of Waterdeep runs, Shane is one member of the Assorted Meeples crew and will be hard at work creating awesome content for the website. He is a long-time player of board games, one time semi-professional poker player, and tends to run to the quirky or RPG side of things when it comes to playing video games. He loves tabletop roleplaying systems like Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, Werewolf, Fate, and others, and not only has been a player but has run games as DM for years. You can find his other work in publications like Level Skip or Hobby Lark.