K2 is the second highest mountain in the world, and according to Wikipedia, it is affectionately known as Savage Mountain due to its extreme fatality rate. About one in every four climbers die, and if you’re a woman, be extra careful: K2 is notoriously misogynist. It wasn’t until 1986 that a lady ever summited K2, and in the subsequent eighteen years, every woman who tried DIED.
Naturally, K2 is the perfect setting for a board game.
Enter “K2,” a nifty game that sees players guiding two unlucky adventurers up (and possibly down) the eponymous mountain. Along the way, our little mountaineers face inclement weather, altitude sickness, and general fatigue — all in an attempt to earn glory and skirt death. It’s not an easy feat, but my friends Jim, Jess, and PT seemed up for it. After the jump, enjoy highlights from our dramatic expedition.
Spoiler alert: not everyone survives…
First let’s meet our climbers. This is PT’s team: Karl and Hans.
Jess’s team: Nancy and Drew.
My crew: Kim Richards and Robin Roberts.
And finally Jim’s duo: Tom Cruise and John Travolta.
The gang convenes at base camp. If you’re thinking “Wait, there are two Kim Richards! And two Robin Roberts!” that’s because each climber has a duplicate that’s used for scoring points. Don’t worry about it.
Our climb: it won’t be easy, but we’re all feeling bullish.
A weather chart gives us a Six Day Extended Forecast with Doppler 4000 Technology®™©. On this first day of the trek, there appears to be a snowstorm, but only at the top of the mountain (if you look closely, you can see which elevations are affected by weather).
The ascent begins. Tom Cruise and John Travolta have finally shown up (ugh, celebrities) and are ready to climb.
Early DRAMZ: Tom Cruise full-on knocks over Drew as he scrambles up the mountain. Not cool, bro.
For the record, there is a neighboring — and equally deadly — cookie mountain nearby. It suffers massive erosion over the course of the night.
Kim Richards is ready to make her first move. She busts out the hardcore ropes to help her journey.
Despite all the heavy gear, Kim only travels one space, which means she’s basically just taken a light walk. Claaaaaasssic Kim.
After about twenty minutes, Tom Cruise has taken the lead, with a strong Robin Roberts right on his tail. Hans also seems to be making a move. Kim Richards, meanwhile, appears to be cozying up to John Travolta down in the foothills. Clearly the two are reminiscing on Hollywood in the ’70s.
Big news: Robin Roberts has crossed 7000m while Tom Cruise seems to have stalled out. Meanwhile, Nancy and Hans are quietly making a move, and Kim and John are still chatting down at the bottom of the mountain.
Bad news: there a snowstorm today. Many people are imperiled.
But as usual, Kim and John don’t even care. They’re safe in the foothills.
After an hour of play, an oxygen-deprived Robin Roberts fends off that pesky Nancy and reaches the summit first. That earns me 10 points. But the real key to winning the game is to get Kim Richards to the top too.
As you can see, there’s quite the disparity between Robin and Kim’s positions on the mountain. Also, John Travolta has decided he’s had enough of Kim’s yammering.
Robin Roberts is too weak to stay on the summit. She descends back down to 7000 meters, allowing Nancy to sneak right up to the top, snagging Jess 10 points. Meanwhile, due to a snowstorm, we’ve all pitched tents to recover some health. Tom Cruise seems to be trying to get into Hans’s tent, but that’s not allowed, despite his best pleas.
25 minutes later, Robin has descended back down to safety while Kim Richards has found the strength to zip up the mountain. She currently appears wedged between John Travolta and Tom Cruise. I think they’re all headed for the same tent.
Sorry, Kim. This tent is for men only.
Meanwhile, things are looking rough for Travolta & Cruise. Their oxygen is critically low. John is basically one snowflake away from death. Thank goodness for their protective tent.
Bad news for everyone: there’s a blizzard. Drew is in his tent. Karl and Hans are in their tent. Tom and John are in their tent. Nancy has a tent on the peak. Everyone’s in a tent. Everyone but KIM. KIM WHAT ARE YOU DOING????
Miraculously, Kim survives the storm and inches closer to the peak. Karl meanwhile smells blood. He and Hans have been waiting to pounce on the peak, but Nancy has been sitting up there for close to 40 minutes, cockblocking everyone from the summit. “I’m just going to stay up there with my tent. I’ll be fine,” said Jess at one point. Well, she was wrong. As you can see in the picture, Nancy’s hubris has gotten the best of her. She’s dead.
Nancy’s lifeless body at the bottom of K2. Presumably the heavy winds blew her corpse off. Jess, incidentally, loses all 10 points she had earned from Nancy’s summit.
Nancy now resides in cookie heaven.
As we hit the eighteenth and final day on the mountain, there’s a surprising development. Karl must turn back before he can reach the peak or else he’ll die. This leaves the window wide open for Kim to take his spot. She too is unable to reach the peak, but by finishing in the penultimate space, Kim and Robin have collectively covered more altitude than any other living (sorry Nancy) team. Green wins!
The final outcome. Note Dead Nancy still at the bottom. (And yes, thematically, the players should have to get back to their base camp, but who cares).
Unbridled enthusiasm from Jim and PT.
Jess is clearly unhappy with the fate of Nancy. Personally, I think cookie heaven is a great place to wind up.
Goodbye sweet Nancy.
In other news, I love this game.