Thursday, May 12, 2016

Stirring up some trouble in real time! A Kickstarter preview of Blend Off

I love chaotic games, especially those with real-time elements.  Something about the controlled chaos really works for my brain which is really odd considering the fact that I can't stand chaos in real life.  Games like Jungle Speed, Pingo Pingo, or World Series of Yahtzee where you are either racing a clock or racing other players are a must in my gaming collection.  Does Blend Off stir up the kind of trouble I like in games?

Blend Off gives each player a die along with a deck of recipe cards.  The recipe cards for each player are shuffled together along with some generic recipes.  One card is flipped over and then the game starts.  The wooden fruit pieces are put within reach of all players.  Each player also gets two blender cards which they place face up in front of themselves.  Setup is really that easy.

There are no turns in this game.  Instead, all players are rolling their die as fast as they can.  If it stops on a side they like, they can take a piece of fruit matching the color and places it in one of their blenders.  As soon as someone matches the recipe card, they shout "Blend!".  They then take the recipe card from the center of the table and flip up a new recipe.  Before they can claim it for good, they need to verify they got it right.  If they are wrong, they have to return the card to the deck and sit out until someone else blends a recipe.

There's one caveat to rolling repeatedly.  If you roll your die and roll a side that has no fruit on the table, you have to take the durian!  This nasty fruit will ruin whatever recipe you put it in so you will have to dump that blender immediately losing all the work you've done.

Once the deck runs out, the game is over.  Whomever completed the most recipes wins!

One of the major flaws of realtime games like this is that they don't usually work for 2 players.  Luckily, Blend Off comes with 2-player rules called The Race.  Each player is racing to compete their 6 recipes and then one of the generic recipes on the center of the table.  The first to do so wins.

We were really surprised by the 2-player rules.  The game was tight every time and it was a good challenge.  Each player has their own fruit so if you have a partner that dislikes confrontation, this is perfect because you won't interfere with each other.  Games are over in just a couple minutes.

The game really shines with the full compliment of players, especially when you add the optional Spill cards which allows a player to make all others dump their blenders.  This really adds a bit of nastiness to the game which ramps up the competition perfectly.   The chaos of the dice rolling, collecting fruit, and completing recipes is already tense, but this takes it to a whole new level.

I love games with chaos.  I love when you are interacting with the other players and weaving the webs of chaos together.  Those moments when the chaos meets are pure magic.  Blend Off captures that magic perfectly and puts it into a tight game that will have players laughing, cursing, and having an absolute blast for 15 minutes.  If you like real-time games, you cannot go wrong here.  Blend Off is a perfect choice for a quick playing game that works for 2-4 equally well.

No comments :

Post a Comment