Let’s Play 1984’s The Temple Of Doom Board Game!

By the time that Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom hit theaters back on May 23, 1984. I was impatiently counting the days up until it’s release. When my Father and I finally had the chance to see it, I was all set to join Indiana Jones again and brave that Temple of Doom.

Film Trailers

Of course it helped that television ads were all over the place. It must be remembered as well that Raiders of the Lost Ark kind of took everyone by surprise in 1981. It seemed like the studio was truly doing its best to get the word out about Temple of Doom.

Having said that I must admit that I do not ever recall seeing the Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom board game back in the day. Thankfully this matter was corrected when the Arkadia Retrocade received a copy of it a few months back.

Joining me for this special event was none other than my fellow author on The Retroist, PLCary.

I must point out the nice design of the Temple of Doom board itself.
Temple of Doom

Each Player also receives a little board that connects to the main board – which features exciting moments from the film as well. Such as the plane crash, waterfall, the palace and of course Club Obi Wan!

After a go with the spinner, a Player must travel the full number of steps. At the very beginning you must choose to take the shorter path which is more dangerous. Or the longer path giving you more opportunities to avoid landing on a danger – sending you back precious steps or even to the beginning.

Dotted across the board are symbols featuring both Indy’s hat and whip and the visage of Mola Ram. When landing on these symbols a Player spins the spinner – if it matches the symbol you have landed upon, two outcomes take place. A match of symbols while on Indy’s hat means a Player can move a piece up to 3 spaces. Where as if you match while on Mola Ram’s symbol – you lose your next turn…probably trying to avoid having your heart ripped out.

Another key point is that a Player isn’t allowed to jump over another of their pieces. Which means there are moments in fact during the game where you are stuck. An opposing Player is allowed to land on your piece – placing your piece where they just were. An act by and large that can become beneficial in certain cases, especially when you enter the temple itself.
Temple of Doom

After navigating the treacherous temple, avoiding the sulfurous pitfalls. By foot or using the stairwells as shortcuts, you begin to move Indy, Willie, and Short Round to the appropriate colored mine carts. A Player must get all three of their playing pieces on the cart before they can race for the finish line.

In our game, while PLCary pulled ahead at the beginning – I made it through the mines first. But on the negative side you need an exact number to cross the rope bridge and win the game. All three of your pieces must have crossed before you can claim victory.

I was getting bad spins and PLCary easily caught up with me. It was a battle across the rope bridge but in the end I lucked out and managed to get all of my pieces across first.

Which in the spirit of Temple of Doom meant I of course paused to cut the rope bridge.


Generally speaking board games based on 1980’s franchises were something of a crapshoot. I can say though that the Temple of Doom game was exceptionally fun. If you can get your hands on it – it is most worth adding to your collection.

‘No Time For Love, Dr. Jones!’ By Dan Hipp

With all of the debate going on about the Temple of Doom, thanks to our very own Brad Lohan’s post of his memories of seeing the second of the Indiana Jones films, I felt I had to share this wonderful piece of art by Dan Hipp that I found online yesterday. Make sure after you visits Dan’s site that you follow the link up above and share your own thoughts on Indiana, Short Round, and Willie.

Temple of Doom Memories

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom Memories

My favorite of the “Indiana Jones” sequels is “Temple of Doom.” I know “Last Crusade” has its legion defenders, and it’s terrific fun. But, in terms of sheer rewatchability, “Temple of Doom” is the one I’ve revisited the most since I was young. The film’s everything-but-the-kitchen-sink approach is just so relentlessly appealing to me. It is not wonder I have such great Temple of Doom memories. Everything that Spielberg and Lucas couldn’t fit into “Raiders” winds up in “Doom.” That being said, it’s all over the place tonally. Even so, that’s part of what I like about it.

Temple of Doom Memories

I remember “Temple of Doom” being an HBO fixture as a kid. There’s no telling how many times I’ve seen it, and I never seem to tire of the proceedings. After thinking he’s escaped from the clutches of Chinese gangster Lao Chi in Shanghai, Indiana Jones, his sidekick Short Round and chanteuse Willie find themselves aboard an airplane with no pilots. They bail out somewhere over India and end up in a village where the heart-ripping Thuggee cult has kidnapped all the villagers’ children and stolen their three mystical Sankara stones.

Jones agrees to recover the stones for mercenary reasons (“Fortune and glory, kid. Fortune and glory.”), but after he, Short Round and Willie are captured by the Thuggee, Jones is forced to drink the blood of Kali, which turns him evil. He participates in a Thuggee ritual at the behest of cult leader Mola Ram and prepares to dip Willie into a pit of boiling lava. But, Short Round breaks Kali’s spell over Indy. Together they rescue Willie and free the children Mola Ram has enslaved. Indy, Short Round and Willie then narrowly escape underground lair of the Thuggee in a wild mine cart chase, and Indy has his final showdown with Mola Ram on a rickety rope bridge. It’s there that Indy finally discovers the true power of the Sankara stones. Whew. What a ride.

“Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” famously is one of the two films, the other being “Gremlins,” responsible for the creation of the PG-13 rating. Although I was a pretty sensitive kid, I somehow was able to handle the scene where Mola Ram removes the still-beating heart from the chest of some poor human sacrifice (“Ohm numa shi vaiyay!”). The film was made at a time when Lucas was going through a divorce, and so has a much darker tone as the filmmaker was exorcising his personal demons. I know that it’s Spielberg’s least favorite of the four Indy movies. Funnily enough, the PG-13 “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” is much more upbeat and decidedly less violent than its two PG-rated predecessors.

Is “Doom” as good as “Raiders?” No, “Raiders” is far and away the best of the series. What I find endearing about “Doom” is how it — maybe too well — embraces its movie serial roots. Its storytelling is shaggier, and it doesn’t hang together as neatly as “Raiders.” Still, it isn’t wanting for enthusiasm. “Doom” moves at a breakneck pace and never bores you. It’s not a perfect movie, and yet, it’s great at what it sets out to do and that’s keep you on the edge of your seat. Is it entertaining? Oh, yes. Is it exhausting? Maybe. Even still, it delivers on its promise: “If adventure has a name, it must be Indiana Jones.”