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La Grande Boucle
La Grande Boucle
by Downey Games (2008)
Player Count
1 to 21

Player Ages

Playing Time
10 hours
  • Sports
  • Designers
  • Phil Riviere
  • Mechanisms
  • Simulation
  • Dice Rolling
  • Family
  • Sports: Bicycle / Cycling
  • Rating: 6.64/10 from 7 users


    From the Downey Games website:

    La Grande Boucle (The Big Loop) is the nickname given to France’s biggest sporting event, the Tour de France.
    Year in, year out, the route followed by the riders for 3 weeks broadly follows a loop around the country, hence the name of our game.

    La Grande Boucle has been a labor of love for designer, Phil Riviere, for many years. Phil had released versions prior to partnering with Downey Games that were "highlight based" games. The Downey Games release of La Grande Boucle is a departure from previous designs. Rather than continuing the "highlight based" game engine, Phil has developed a full-blown simulation of the Tour de France.

    Phil recently commented, " Although sharing the same name as previous versions, the latest incarnation is a completely different concept. No highlights here as the game system covers the action on the full length of each stage. Every single aspect of Road Racing is covered. There are also options for tactical choices."

    La Grande Boucle is the ONLY full simulation of the Tour de France. Every stage, time trial, and rider is included in the game.

    In game terms, the Tour de France is quite challenging a subject because of, the huge quantity of riders taking part (around 200) and the difference in the character of the 20 + stages which form the race. However, Phil has risen to the challenge. La Grande Boucle not only gives accurate results, but you'll feel as if you are taking part in the actual Tour de France.

    We do want to reiterate that this is not simply a relabeling of an old game. La Grande Boucle version 4 is a completely new design.

    Phil asked me to close with the following: "The game is meant to be played over several sessions. This is definitely not a fast or quick replay game. The flat stages are fairly quick to replay and will be slotted in one seating. Mountain stages, however, will take much longer to complete.

    Not wishing to discourage you, but finishing this replay will be like finishing the Tour: Difficult but Rewarding. Be warned and enjoy the racing."

    The game ships with the ratings for the 2004 Tour de France.

    The printed game features individual, die-cut cards for all 189 riders; charts printed in full color, a complete rule book, Team lists in full-color, Replay data in full-color, dice, and a sturdy game box.

    Note: The game is also available in a e-book version (print and play) for a lower price.

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