Each player is supplied with seven coloured plastic counters (the worm) and a matching six-sided die, labelled 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and X. The auxiliary gizmos include starting blocks and a cardboard finish line. It wasn't bad value in Essen at DM17, but looks a touch expensive upon arrival in the UK.
Game play comprises selecting either a number on the die, or the valuable ``X'' factor. If you have chosen a number unique to yourself, you may move that total of worm segments towards the tape. If any other player(s) have selected the same number, you and the like-minded are stymied and may not move. The same principle applies to those who designated the ``X''. If two or more Xs appear, the moves are cancelled out. If, however, you are on your own with this choice, then you may move a number of counters NOT selected on the other player's dice. As a bonus, the finish line may also be rotated on its axis, bringing it nearer your own worm, and furthur from the challengers. At this juncture, a sample turn may better illustrate the mechanism:
John and Paul have chosen ``4s'', George a ``5'', Ringo ``7'' and Bert ``X''. Silly billys that they are, John and Paul cannot move, and depart to an adjacent room to write ``Paperback Writer''. George and Ringo can both move their designated choices (Ringo first). Of the numbers left, Bert can relocate either 3 or 6 counters and also the finish line. Blocking is permitted, and there is jollity a plenty to be had as the wiggly worms head for glory. In the above example, you will be overjoyed to hear that Bert prevailed, and the remaining quartet were inspired to name their group after an insect, having rejected ``The Worms'' as unsuitable. Surreal? Not half!