Game Review

A Dual Review: The Game & Hanabi


Players: 1 - 5
Playing Time: 20 Minutes

A review by Parker Banks

This is a dual review about The Game and Hanabi. Both of these games are card based, coop games that require all of the players to work together in order to play cards sequentially, hence the dual review. Both games can also be played in 20 minutes or less. 2-5 players can enjoy a game of Hanabi together while The Game can actually be played in a solo variant, so it accompanies 1-5 players. Hanabi is published by R&R Games and The Game is published by NSV.

Recommended for:

Both of these games are recommended for players who enjoy co-op games and games that do not have very strong themes. These are both games light, quick games where the only thing that really matters is the number on your card. Both of these are also excellent for anyone who claims that they can read minds. That would be a very helpful trait for these games.

Delorean not included: a review of Temporum


Players: 2 - 5
Playing Time: 35 Minutes

A review by Scott Fish

Temporum is the latest entry from the legendary Donald X Vaccarino, a man whose games I have a... complicated... relationship with. Some of his games I have loved and have recommended to anyone who'll listen (Dominion and Kingdom Builder). But there are also games (Gauntlet of Fools, Pina Pirata) where I was upset for wasting my time on them. So when I was handed this game, I was cautiously optimistic. Which will this game be: boom or bust? Let's take a closer look.

Temporum is a 2–5 player game about time travel; you will spend your turns travelling to 4 different eras to change the future and secure your power in the present. The zones in each era are set up in pyramid fashion: the first tier has only one zone, but the fourth zone has four zones you can visit. The catch is you can only visit a zone if the timeline connects to it. Each time you change history in the past, you alter the future timeline and may move players in a future time to a totally different zone! You win when you have moved all of your crowns (influence) from the first era to the last era. Gameplay takes 25–45 minutes on average.

Recommended for:

Entry level to moderate experience players who are looking for a fast, lightweight game but also has solid game mechanics and tight finishes each time they play. Hardcore gamers or people who are looking for a cool time travel theme need to keep looking.

Review: Samurai Spirit


Players: 1 - 7
Playing Time: 30 Minutes

A review by Scott Fish

Samurai Spirit is the latest game by Antoine Bauza, the creator of such fantastic games as 7 Wonders, Hanabi, Takenoko, Tokaido, and Ghost Stories. It is a 1-7 player cooperative game which puts seven brave samurai against a seemingly endless horde of bandits in order to defend a small village of farmers.

If that plot sounds familiar, then I applaud your taste in movies; the theme of the game is very much influenced by the 1956 classic Shichinin no Samurai (Seven Samurai) by Akira Kurosawa (Or for you western movie buffs, the 1960 Americanized remake, The Magnificent Seven). Mr. Bauza went so far as to write an homage to the movie in the rule book and named all of the Samurai in the game after the Samurai in the film.

A full game of seven players should take about 45 minutes, but a 2–3 player game can be done as quickly as 20 minutes. There is also a solo variant where one person controls two samurai with a few tweaks to the rules.

Recommended for: Groups of 4-7 players who are looking for a quick, light cooperative game, people who enjoy the "Seven Samurai" theme, people who do not mind losing often to forces out of their control (like in traditional solitaire, Chainsaw Warrior, or DungeonQuest).