Board Games Wiki

"Heat: Pedal to the Metal™" is a game that consists of multiple rounds. In each round, all players must complete four steps. These steps are as follows: 1) adjust their gear, 2) play cards, 3) move their car, and 4) draw back up to seven cards. These steps are mandatory for every player and are indicated by a specific icon. Steps 4-8 are situational and may not apply to every turn.

During steps 1 and 2, all players simultaneously perform these actions without waiting for each other. Once steps 1 and 2 are completed by all players, they proceed to steps 3-9. This sequence is repeated until all cars have finished the race, with the number of laps determined by the track being used.

Step 1, "Shift Gears," requires players to check the gear their car is currently in and decide whether to keep it or shift it up or down by one position. Shifting the gear by two positions is also possible but incurs a Heat penalty, which is explained further on page 7 regarding Heat Cards.

Step 2, "Play Cards," involves playing cards from the player's hand. The number of cards played is determined by the current gear of the car. For example, in first gear, one card must be played, while in second gear, two cards must be played. The played cards are kept facedown in the player's Play Area.

After steps 1 and 2 are completed, players move on to step 3, "Reveal & Move." In this step, players flip the cards in their Play Area to reveal their values. The values of all revealed cards are added together to determine the speed of the car. The car is then moved forward by the exact number of spaces corresponding to the total speed. If there is a Spot closest to the Race Line, the car is placed there. Cars do not block other cars from passing through, except when all spots are occupied, in which case the moving car is placed in the first available free spot behind the blocking cars.

If two cars are next to each other, the car closest to the Race Line is considered ahead in all situations.

The game includes Stress cards, which represent lapses of concentration during the race. Each player starts with three Stress cards shuffled into their draw deck. When a Stress card is played, a random speed between 1 and 4 is applied by flipping the top card of the draw deck. If the flipped card is a Speed card, it is added to the played cards for the round. If it is not a Speed card, it is immediately discarded, and the next card is flipped until a Speed card is found. This randomization process is completed before moving on to the Adrenaline Step.

Step 4, "Adrenaline," applies only to the last car to move in the round or the last two cars in races with five or more cars. If a player has adrenaline, they have the option to add 1 extra speed to their movement and gain access to 1 extra Cooldown. Both of these advantages can be used during the React step. Adrenaline cannot be carried over to future rounds.

Step 5, "React," is applicable if the player has access to symbols from played cards, Adrenaline, or their current gear. In this step, the player can activate symbols they have access to in any desired order. The symbols available in the core game are Cooldown and Boost. Cooldown allows the player to return a Heat card from their hand to the Engine, enabling its reuse. The number in the Cooldown symbol indicates how many Heat can be moved in this way. Boost allows the player to increase their speed by flipping the top card of their draw deck until a Speed card is drawn, discarding all other cards in the process.

Step 6, "Slipstream," is optional and applies when the player ends their move next to or behind another car. If the player chooses to Slipstream, they move forward by 2 spaces.

Step 7, "Check Corner," applies when the player crosses through a corner during their turn. If the total speed for the round exceeds the Speed Limit of the corner, the player must pay Heat equal to the difference between their speed and the Speed Limit. If the speed is equal to or lower than the Speed Limit, no penalty is incurred. If multiple corners are crossed in the same turn, each corner must be paid for separately, starting with the first one crossed.

If the player does not have enough Heat to pay for the excess speed, they must pay all the Heat they have and immediately spin out. The car is moved back to the first available space before the corner that caused the spin out. Additionally, one extra Stress card is taken into the player's hand if they are in 1st or 2nd gear, or two extra Stress cards if they are in 3rd or 4th gear. The Gear pawn is also moved to the lowest gear available.

Step 8, "Draw Cards," allows players to draw back up to seven cards in their hand, replenishing their hand for the next round.

These steps are repeated until all cars have completed the required number of laps determined by the track being used. The first car to cross the finish line after completing the required laps is declared the winner of the race.

"Heat: Pedal to the Metal™" is a strategic racing game that requires players to manage their speed, play cards strategically, and make tactical decisions to navigate corners and overtake opponents. The game incorporates elements of luck with the randomization of Speed and Stress cards, but skillful play and planning can greatly increase a player's chances of winning.

See also[]