I love that board games can be about anything. Got mystical quests, wall-tiling, making chemicals, and of course seating people on planes. This one snuck up on me and I didn’t expect this to be as good as it was.
Find out why after the jump!
Overbooked is a 1-4 player pattern-laying game where you are putting airline passengers on a plane and trying to fill it up (or at least a section of it). To make things more challenging, people come to you in different patterns. One could be an X-shape of different discs and the next could be a checkered. You have to choose the one that best fits in your plane to fill up as many seats as best as possible.
How the best part works is from the colors. There five disc colors: red for lovers, white for kids, blue/yellow/green for friends or just people? Lovers score if only two are adjacent. Kids get points if they are completely surrounded by adults (even lovers). And the last three groups want to be sitting together for mass effectiveness.
The namesake comes from when you have to place a group of passengers but someone is already in the seat. The original person is kicked off the plane and you get negative points. Definitely adds a puzzle element that makes you cheer when passengers criss-crosses or jumps a disc and perfectly fits.
There is a “new” jumbo version of the game in some territories with a 3D air traffic control tower, faces on cardboard tokens of the people, and too much more but I prefer the less busy and more elegant wooden disc version I picked up. The box could probably be thinner and is only so wide/tall because the game boards; it makes for a nice compact-ish game that I appreciate more.
There is more to this game (like food vouchers/Century mechanic) but this should be enough to make you want to book a seat!