short games

Pandasaurus Games announced the release of Illusion, by award winning game designer Wolfgang Warsch.  Following up his success of The Mind, Wolfgang challenges players in Illusion to correct assess color proportions across a selection of card depicting colorful abstract art. Each round begins with starting color card and an arrow card depicting the change of color proportion each subsequent card must display.  Players draw new color cards and insert them in the order directed by the arrow card. The player who detects the error in sequence properly earns the arrow card; if an error is declared incorrectly, the player who placed the last color card gets the arrow card.  The precise portion of each color is labeled on the back of each card.  The player with the most arrow cards are the end of the game is the winner.

Illusion plays 2-5 players, ages 8 and up in about 15 minutes. Contents includes 12 arrows card (three each in yellow, red, green and blue) and 98 color cards.

Pandasaurus Games is also bringing Qwinto to the American market. This popular roll and write game by Bernhard Lach and Uwe Rapp has been a hit in the European market since 2015. In Qwinto, one player rolls one or more of the dice (colored purple, yellow, and orange) and announces the sum.  All players enter that number on their scoring pad in one of the colored rows matching the colors of the dice rolled. Two rules must be followed when placing a sum in a row: all numbers in a row must increase from left to right; and no number can be repeated in a vertical column. Points are scored based on how many fields are completed in each row and which numbers are in scoring positions.  The player with the most points wins.

Qwinto plays 2-6 players, ages 8 and up in about 15 minutes. Contents includes three dice (orange, yellow and purple), scorepads, and pencils.

 

Look for Illusion and Qwinto at GenCon and in stores this August.

Plan B Games, the publisher that brought us the crazy popular Century: Spice Road, it’s much anticipated sequel, and the excellent Azul, has announced a new publishing branch they have titled Next Move Games. Next Move Games, much like Plan B, is focused on creating short, punchy, and high quality games that focus on elegantly simple rules and exemplary table aesthetic but feature incredible strategic depth, so the program doesn’t seem to have changed much. The only noticeable difference is that each game from Next Move will only have 4 letters in the title in order to drive home the point of their design and publishing goals, which leads us to their first of such titles – REEF. As described on their press release:

The first title REEF was created by acclaimed designer Emerson Matsuuchi – best known for designing the Century series. During the game, players serve as the reef itself, alternating turns and carefully selecting which colors and patterns in which to grow and expand – the more beautiful the reef, the more points they will score! […] While it could take thousands of years for a coral reef to grow, we expect a game of Reef to only take about 30 – 45 minutes.”

What a gorgeous game box, wouldn’t you agree? Even if that graphic is described on their press release as “Visual still in development”, I feel their progress thus far is a pretty good sell. Given that this is yet another game in a line following from Azul, I have nothing but good expectations for  REEF and Next Move. However, we may not learn much more about REEF until it’s debut on June 13th at Origins (much the same as the sequel to Plan B’s Century: Spice Road). If, like me, you want to find out more about Next Move’s future games and more information about REEF, please check out their website for more information and future updates!

knee jerk

We all have initial reactions to situations we find ourselves in, and we typically refer to these as “knee-jerk reactions.”  Renegade Game Studios has encapsulated this theme into a game aptly entitled Knee Jerk, a party game in which players will hear a situation presented and must shout out an ending for the situation as fast as possible.

For example, such a situation might be “I Feel Panicked At The Beach Because I Saw ______!”  Players will be able to shout anything to complete the statement, such as “A shark!”, “A smoke monster!” or even “My grandmother in a bikini!”.  The first player to respond receives a point, but if more than one player responds, the host player chooses his or her favorite answer.  The forces players to offer creative, witty responses on the fly.

New scenes and situations (Your First Date, A Haunted Mansion to Outer Space, etc.) are presented in rapid-fire-succession, creating a zany, fast, and hilarious atmosphere.  The game boasts 150,000 different possible situations.   The first player to achieve 3 points is the winner of Knee Jerk.

Knee Jerk is a game for 4-8 players ages 9 and up and plays in 10 minutes.  A definitive release date has yet to be announced.

R & R Games, publisher of games like Hanabi, SpellCaster and Spike, will be releasing three new games soon.

Caffeine Rush

Caffeine Rush

In Caffeine Rush you and your fellow competitors are baristas who will compete to be the one barista to have finished the most orders when the game ends. You do so by grabbing ingredients and making your drinks as fast as you can. The game is for 2-6 players, ages 8+ and plays in 10 minutes.
Components

  • 162 Ingredient cards
  • 36 Order cards
  • 12 Special cards and player aid cards

Spit It Out

Spit it Out

A party game where you will answer six easy questions wrong to get them right. If that wasn’t weird enough, you will have a short time limit to answer the questions your brain is hardwired to answer correctly. Each wrong answer can only be given once, but sometimes you have to give the correct answer as well. Sounds like a fun, whacky, party game for the whole family. The game is for 3-8 players, ages 10+ and plays in 20-30 minutes.

Spit It Out 2
Components

  • 300 Question cards
  • 2 Dice
  • 1 Score pad
  • 1 Sand timer

Cup A Cup

Cup-A-Cup

This game requires fast hands and fast reflexes. Roll the dice, quickly identify the missing colored shape and grab the matching cup. You will have to move fast since they are all up for grabs and the first to collect three cups wins the game. The game is for 2-8 players, ages 6+ and plays in 10-20 minutes.
Components

  • 9 Cup-A-Cups
  • 2 Symbol dice