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Deflexion Game Review by Heidi Shaw

Stortz & Assoc. (in the USA)

What is Deflexion? Chess? Checkers? No, not really. But what it really is, is FUN! The first time my older son (16) saw this game, he was over the moon. Strategy, planning, and laser light? Too cool to be true, he thought. It must be overly complicated. Well, both he and I were delighted to find that he was wrong, Deflexion isn't overly complicated, and it is very cool. While it isn't really a chess game, it does involve strategy much more than luck. And it helps if you have a mind that can think in many different directions at once. Most homeschool moms I know should be really good at this game. We are masters of multilayer thinking. Unfortunately, in my home, I may never get the chance to play; the kids love the game too much!

Based on an Ancient History theme, Deflexion is played on a recessed board designed to look like a pharaoh's tomb. The grid of squares is laid out similarly to a chess board, and inside two of the walls are the "stars" of the game--laser light beams!

The pieces, which are shaped like obelisks and pyramids, all have mirrors. After each turn the player pushes a button, the goal being to position your pieces so that the laser light will bounce off the mirrors and hit the opposing man's pharaoh. Moves consist of either changing squares with another piece or rotating a piece 90 degrees. Sounds simple, but the strategy involved in trying to outwit and out-think your opponent can be quite complex. As in chess, there is a starting configuration for the pieces; but after the game basics have been learned, players are encouraged to try out other configurations. There is an active online community of planners who post new ideas for starting configurations on the Web. The game is quite addictive.

This game is "a heap of fun," as my kids say. There are very basic rules to get you started right away as well as many possible variations, which make for virtually unending play options. This game can be different every time you play it. Because of this no one gets bored, and no one minds playing just one more game.

Deflexion is a huge hit; everyone in our family was hooked on it. I highly recommend it for most ages, all the way from 8 or 9 up to adult, but the young ones are definitely going to want to have a go as well!

Product review by Heidi Shaw, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, October 2006