Now that the festivities are pretty much over with, I’m finally getting back into the hang of my blog and my reviews. Yes Christmas certainly zapped my blogging energy along with the never ending run of our household family viruses.
Anyway yes I’m back and am back with my first family game of the year as part of the Blogger Game Club.
As you can see. This is called Jungle Speed. I’m really glad that we got this game this time round because some of the games we have played previously have been too difficult for Izebella and a few even a bit hard for Jordanna to master. This one is aimed at 7 years and above, but if you have a clever 5 year old like I do then there is no harm at all in them joining in too.
See it’s just a lot of cards with patterns and a wooden totem which I believe to be a tribal type thing. This totem doesn’t actually do much in way of sounds or anything either and so no batteries are needed.
Rules are simple. It’s a bit like snap in a way with a few differences. The cards all get dealt out and there’s lots of them so it can take a while with fewer players. Just like snap each player turns over one card at a time but unlike snap; players form own piles rather than a big middle pile (tho of course the rules can be changed to suit!)
Unlike snap, these cards have no numbers, it’s all strange patterns and shapes and it’s all about the patterns. The colours don’t matter but the patterns need to match exactly. It gets confusing because some of them are really similar just not quite the same. If a pattern match is spotted a player has to quickly grab the totem, leaving the other players to add all the played cards to their own piles. Just like snap, the first to get rid of all their cards wins.
There’s a few extra bonus type cards hidden among the pattern cards too that can change the play a little and various rules should two players grab the totem at the same time etc but nothing too complicated with this game, after all if my five year old can play it first time round then I think anyone can.
This one costs anything from £14.00 upwards and up to 10 people can play at once. An easy Peasy quick fast thinking family game.
As part of the Blogger board game club, I am sent regular family games to test and try out. I really enjoy being a part of it as not only does it give us the opportunity to try out the games but also that bit of family time without the technology or phones to distract us.
Last month we played The Colt Express. I found this quite a difficult game to get my head around. Far too many rules and things to do. This months game is soooo much simpler.
This is Codenames. It’s a small compact box. No board, no batteries, no dice and no playing pieces. But lots of cards.
These are the Codename cards. There are hundreds but only 25 are played at once. Each card is double sided and each word is meant to be the name of an agent.
These are the agent cards! The bottom card is the assassin and the one card that we don’t want to see whilst playing, the two above him are innocent bystander cards. Yes you guessed it. The game is themed around spies and secret agents.
These are the keycards! Ever played battleships or mastermind? Well there are a few similarities with this game.
The codename cards need aligning as above in 5 rows of 5. It’s best as a team hand but we have our our own unique way of playing with 3 of us.
If playing in teams of two, one becomes the spymaster and the other a field operative. The spymaster takes a keycard (as above) each square on the keycard is a position of the code cards, each colour relates to either a red or blue agent, a bystander or the assassin. This sounds complicated so this picture may show it better.
See the top row on the keycard now matches the top code card row. It’s all about finding the agents on your colour team. This is done by the spymaster giving one word clues on the code card names. For example if the spymaster said – animal 4. This indicates 4 words relating to animals which would be – dinosaur, cat, turkey and bear. Now these answers won’t all be for the correct team. Field players tap the answers one by one. A correct guess means a spy card replaces the word. Am incorrect guess means a card for the other team or a bystander which then stops anymore guesses for that round. The assassin card ends the game.
The winning team has to place all their spy cards over their words.
It is actually a very easy game to master. I would say the most difficult part can be thinking up the one word clues to guess some of the codenames.
As there are usually only 3 of us playing here, we do change the rules slightly. One of us will be a be a neutral spymaster. The other two players will be red and blue (solo). The neutral spymaster will the only one giving the clues to both players. This works really well as we then take turns to be spymasters and field operatives.
Codenames costs between £14.00 – £20.00 from most good toy stores.