Sunday: Real Time Games And My First Coffee High In Years


Sunday started out like any other, wake up, get breakfast in Chinatown, then do some other stuff. This Sunday was a little different because around 9 everything blew up and all our plans we broken into a thousand pieces. Wandering around all cranky with the both of us ready to possibly tear the others throats out we went home. Tails between our legs, we tried to salvage what we could of the day and re-packed up heading to the 20-Sided Store.

That’s my story and I’m sticking with it. Truthfully alot of stuff was going on on Sunday and I’m gonna have to break it up into a bunch of small articles…

cause I’m lazy.

 and probably need a shower.

 need to do laundry.

definitely need a shower.

As I said, Sunday was all about real-time games. What the hell does that mean? A real-time game adds the chaos element into the mix. Like Space Cadets Dice Duel or Escape: Curse of the Temple where you spend too much time picking up dice from the floor, RT card games have cards flying around the table like little paper shuriken. Most RT games tend to be quick, under 10 minute games and Light Speed was one of the ones that jumped out at me.

LightSpeedPlugLight Speed was one of Cheapass Games “Hip Pocket Games” series designed by Tom Jolly and James Ernest.  Light Speed (of course) is a RT game where you are competing with up to 3 other players to mine asteroids and destroy each others ships. In its most basic form you lay an asteroid on the table and each player gets a 10-card color-coded deck of ships. The ships are numbered from 1 to 10 with 10 being the most powerful ship. The ships all have lasers and some of the more powerful ones have shields. The whole idea is that once everyone is ready, they start laying their ships on the table being aware of where their lasers are pointing. You are trying to mine asteroids AND destroy other players ships. Be aware also, that all lasers are shooting and if one of your lasers is pointing at one of YOUR ships you will damage it. Setup is simple, lay an asteroid(s) on the table with 12 mining tokens, everyone shuffles their 10-card deck and at the same time all start laying their cards face up on the table, when the first player is finished laying their ships EVERYONE is done. I kinda screwed myself because when the first player was finished (Mac) I had only layed out 5 cards. and they were only the 1-5 (weakest cards).


When the laying is complete it’s time to resolve the carnage. There are three types of lasers, white worth 1 point, red worth 2 points and green worth 3 points. Damage is resolved fastest ship first and all damage is simultaneous so all the 1 ships fire first, when that is resolved the 2 ships can fire. Any time your lasers hit the asteroid you mine as many tokens from it as your laser value. When the asteroid has no more tokens on it, remove it from the board.


That’s enough rules for now. I can’t believe I’ve made it this far without ever hearing about this game. Even though each game is quick (10 minutes max) I could play it continuously for an hour or so. You can bet that if you see me at a game store and I have my bag, it’s in there. It’s fun for people of all ages and you really should buy it or at least take the file to Staples and print it, it’ll be about 4 bucks. I printed it and put the cards in color coded sleeves.

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Light Speed is available from Cheapass Games as a PnP or you can buy a printed deck from Drivethru Cards for $11.99


  1. Lightspeed is absolutely brilliant. Thanks for giving up some much-needed love!

    Another James Earnest game you might enjoy is Falling. Not quite as successful as Lightspeed, but a really interesting take on a real-time game.