Lost in Space Milton Bradley Game
For new players in Lost in Space collecting, the 1965 Milton
Bradley Lost in Space game will often be the first original 1960s
purchase - and it's not hard to see why. It is one of the
most common Lost in Space toys from the 60s with a decent
game generally obtainable for well under $US100. The game also
has a striking action oriented cover design which is very
The game hardly wins an award for game play. Game enthusiasts
will tell you a good game should have a blend of skill, luck,
simplicity and above all it must have high repeat value so that
it is interesting and different each time you play. This game
does not meet any of these criteria except for the luck and simplicity
aspects. Game play is very generic in nature, not very
challenging and similar to a number of other Milton Bradley
TV related board games from the mid-60s such as the Voyage to
the Bottom of the Sea game.
Perhaps this partly explains why the complete and near mint games
are so plentiful. 60s kids probably quickly tired of the game
and relogated it to the top cupboard. In doing so the game avoided
any serious damage to the box and board. The playing pawns were
also safely tucked away for the future.
While the game play will hardly set your pulse racing on another
level it is very successful. Being a TV board game, one would
expect it to be evocative of both the featured characters and
their environment. The box cover artwork features all the members of
the Robinson party and appears to be based on the pilot episode since
the Robot and Dr. Smith are not to be seen anywhere. Maureen's
out-stretched hand is suggestive of high emotion and is very effective
and reminiscent of gesturing in Rennaissance Italian paintings. In such paintings,
the use of hands was an important device to convey drama or action
in a still image. The name of the artist that did the game box art is unknown but it is
know that most Milton Bradley games from that period were under the
general design direction of Jum Houlihan.
The hostile Lost in Space multi-dimensioned environment is evoked on
the folded game board. Displayed on the inner side of the board
is a strange alien landscape showing various geographic features such as a
desert plain in the middle, a mountainous range on the right (labeled
'Magnetic Mountain'), a cratered surface in the foreground, a sea with
three whirlpools at the top (labeled 'Alpha Sea') and a deep canyon on
the left hand side (labeled 'Cyclone Canyon'). On the top left hand
side an out of proportion Jupiter 2 is displayed with three figures
visible in the viewport. On the bottom right hand corner the
chariot can be seen moving forward and stopping at the edge of a
sandy cliff face.
Four figures are shown wearing a jet-pack. Three of these are flying
and holding laser weapons and the other is seen standing beside and
signaling the occupants of the chariot. All the jet-pack figures
are seen wearing silver space flight suits with the exception of the
figure at the top right hand side who wears an orange jump suit. The
main focus of their attention is a large cyclops monster who appears
to have emerged from a large crater ('MONSTER PIT') in
the center of the desert plain.
A grid with diagonal lines covers the greater central part of the
board with the Cyclops occupying a large square at its center.
Four generic playing pawns are included with the game: a green, red,
yellow and blue playing piece. Embossed on the bottom of each pawn is
the 'MB' logo. The Pawns are stored behind a rectangular folded cardboard
insert labeled 'Playing Pieces' with a cellophane window through
which the pawns are clearly visible. Access to the pawns is possible
by lifting the front flap of the insert. Collector's should
be aware the cellophane window is often missing in games which
come on the market today.
One collector has reported that the pawns originally came in a small
sealed cellophane bag. However this has not been confirmed by
A multi colored spinner occupies the right hand side of the folded
insert and is placed against a light blue background. It provides
players five directional navigation options including 'Any Direction',
'Straight Ahead', 'Right', 'Diagonal Ahead' and 'Left'. Children who
don't understand their left from their right are assisted by
arrows describing the meaning of each direction on the spinner.
Objective of the Game & Rules
Instruction 'Rules' on how to play the game and a spinner are
found on a second and larger folded cardboard insert - a standard
feature of many Milton Bradley games from the period.
An introductory paragraph above the game rules explains the
object of the game in the following terms:
"In this exciting game of luck, players must travel over the wild
and hazardous 'Lost in Space' unknown planet. The spinner tells
them in what direction they must move each turn. They may be forced
to move off the path or even into the 'MONSTER PIT' which will send
them back to the start. Anything may happen as players move all over
the board trying to travel to and land on their own FINISH circle.
The OBJECT OF THE GAME is for a player to land on his finish circle
What Collectors Should Look For
Things to watch out for when buying a Milton Bradley Lost in Space
Split corners on the game box: A very common problem
especially on the top half of the box. It's preferable to avoid
tape repaired boxes. If a box has corner splits which threatens
further damage it's probably a good idea to immobilize it using a
Warped box covers: This is caused by a number of factors including
unsuitable environments such as high humidity and by having
heavy objects stored on top. A warped box cover can be very unsightly
and effect the displayability of the game.
Make sure all 4 playing pieces are present and that they are genuine
MB pieces. Dealers have been known to use non-MB pieces.
Warped boards: This is a fairly common fault on a 'really played with'
board. Also watch out for tears along the inner spine of the board
caused by opening the it too far.
Discolored cardboard inserts: Aging of the insert cardboard is
unfortunately unavoidable because of the composition of the cardboard.
However it is much more pronounced in games stored in
unfriendly conditions such as high humidity.
Incomplete games: The most common missing items in this game are the
playing piece cardboard insert, the playing pieces themselves
and the 'arrow' of the spinner.
Markings on box cover: These can take many forms such as texture,
price labels, tape marks, staining caused by aging tape, edge wear,
water damage etc. The cover of the box is the most appealing thing
about this game so any kind of damage should be avoided
like the plague.
How Much Should You Pay?
Mint examples of this game will often achieve $125 or more at
major auction sales but a good game in reasonable condition can
often be bought in the range of $65-$85. The good thing about
this game is that unlike some of the more rare Lost in Space collectibles,
there is always the opportunity to buy a mint game or to upgrade
in the future.