“We become aware of our surroundings only intermittently, as time flows from the past to the future, from the beginning to the end of your life.” (HG Wells, The Time Machine)

The Time Machine

London, late 19th century. A group of friends listen to the adventures of the man who claims to be the first time traveler. This genius inventor built an extraordinary machine that allows him to travel through the centuries. This is how he reaches the year 802701. Around him, everything has changed, and the first inhabitants he meets have an attitude that is strange to say the least: a serenity mixed with a dark terror that the appearance of the Morlocks will soon explain… The Time Machine is the first novel and first masterpiece by HG Wells.

“In 1894 I found myself short of money. It was a difficult time. Jane and I were awaiting my divorce, and we had gone to live in London because of her health, which was delicate, as was mine… Anyway, that was the situation when I unearthed a story sketched in the past, The Space Argonauts – not a very catchy title, eh? I completely rewrote it and renamed it The Time Machine.

Luckily, one of my former protectors took my manuscript as a serial. He offered me a hundred pounds for it. A hundred pounds! It was a fortune for us. And when this story was published in book form, it enjoyed considerable success. I remember a magazine saying: “Mr HG Wells is a genius.” For a first novel, you couldn’t have asked for better, could you?” (Extract from A Man of Temperament, biography of HGWells by David Lodge).

The Time Machine is the first novel to evoke the notion of time travel.

The Time Explorer thus explains that his machine allowed him to travel to the year 802701 where he observes the evolution of humanity and its society, through the Elois and the Morlocks. Indeed, the Elois live in total carelessness, in an extremely idle manner, without arts, without work, without culture, with an extremely reduced language. In contrast, the Morlocks live underground and have regressed to a form of which pushes them towards cannibalism, since they hunt down the Elois after dark to eat them.

However, this supposedly natural evolution actually turns out to be due to a configuration of the distribution of social classes in space. The Elois are thus the descendants of the upper classes living in opulence, while the Morlocks come from the working classes, forced to live underground to maintain the machines.

G. Wells not only offers readers a fascinating futuristic novel, he also expresses, in a metaphorical way, his criticism of capitalism which splits the society of his time into two opposing social classes.

Born in 1866 in the southern suburbs of London, HG Wells had to provide for his family from an early age and became an apprentice to a fabric merchant. It was there that he discovered social inequality, and that his socialist convictions were born. He is passionate about Plato’s Republic, and is introduced to the progress of science. David Lodge said of him: “HG Wells is an autodidact who wanted to change the world”.

If it did not change the world, this novel has at least accompanied several generations of science fiction fans, including many creators of imaginary worlds.

The Time Machine, HG Wells, published by Folio Bilingue

Time Collectors

“Time travel fascinates and invites us to reflect on the place of time in our current world, a world of the instantaneous with its omnipresent now and its threatened future” (Time Travel, James Gleick).

Time Collectors also invites players to travel back in time…Here we are in 8053. As great temporal explorers, players have the opportunity to travel into the fourth dimension in search of the vanished riches of the Earth.

Simultaneously, all players roll their dice behind their screen and will form a date to travel and collect 1 to 2 cards. When it is their turn, a player can change the value of up to 2 of their dice before moving on the timeline, by spending “time crystals”. The card or cards won are then placed on their personal board. These cards score differently depending on the families to which they belong (animal species, plant species, minerals, wonders of the past, books of knowledge).

The game ends when a player has at least 10 cards on their board. To win the game, you will have to carefully manage your resources in “temporal crystals”, while developing your collection of cards. Indeed, the riches of the past must respect certain constraints to maximize their scoring. Animals, for example, are placed next to each other while plants need space to develop and should not be next to another plant.

My opinion on Time Collectors:

The equipment is excellent and the game caught my eye with its theme and its beauty…yes, I like it when it’s a little neon! Who says dice means chance of the dice, but you can have a certain control by changing up to 2 faces of the dice and that’s clever and quite strategic in the end! The game still remains very accessible and family friendly. It also offers a slight interaction since you can sometimes remove from the timeline the cards so coveted by your opponents.

In short, I really like it.

Time Collectors a game by Maréva Beauchamps and Florian Sirieix, illustrated by Martin Maigret at Lubee éditions

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