Hoping to send this off in a few hours for the HABA contest:
“After You!” –a dice-drafting, animal racing game by Patrick Blindauer
2-5 players, ages 6+, 15-25 min.
Your animal friends are off to the races, but this is unlike any race you’ve ever seen! The winner is the one in LAST place when someone else crosses the finish line. “After You!” is a high-luck, light-strategy experience where last is first and being polite is the name of the game.
1 game board, 5 animal racers, 5 matching animal turn markers, 5 dice numbered 1, 2, and 3, 6 black Reverse tokens, 6 Victory Stones, 10 double-sided movement cards, and 1 self-contained pop-up dice tray (in my mind, anyway).
Everybody selects an animal racer. Take the matching animal turn markers and draw them blind from a closed fist to determine the turn order. Place the racers on the START space. Put a Victory Stone on the first racer’s token to use as a turn tracker. Place a Reverse token in each of the remaining corner spaces (2 per space for 4-5 player games). Shuffle the movement cards, placing 6 around the board as shown (see photos).
How to play
The youngest player begins. On your turn, roll a number of dice equal to the number of players, and assign each player one of the dice. Tell everybody what number they have, and everybody moves forward that number of spaces, resolving the effect of any single movement card they land on (if you then land on a second movement card, just stay where you are). Players may occupy the same space at the same time. If a racer has a Reverse token, they may choose to go backward, instead. Reverse tokens can be used at any time, but you may only have one at a time. If two or more players go to collect a Reverse token at the same time, break the tie by rolling one die per player, aiming for the lowest number. Move the Victory Stone to the next animal turn marker, and the next player rolls.
End of the Game
The round ends when one racer crosses the FINISH line. Whoever is in LAST place at that time is the winner! If there’s a tie, the tied players should each roll one die; lowest number wins. Give the winner a Victory Stone and reset for the next round (race). The first person to get 2 Victory Stones is the winner of the game and should be treated like a Champion (at least, until the next time you play).