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Subject: For the Meeple, by the Meeple (Review of Wink) rss

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Michael Carpenter
United States
West Virginia
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For the Meeple, by the Meeple


SUMMARY




Wink is a party game for 4-8 players that is simple, fast, and fun! The goal of this game is to identify your partner through the use of winks. Careful though, this must be done in secret and you have very little time to find your partner! The player who can balance surveillance and espionage the best will be the winner.

THE BOARD


The board in Wink is a 6 x 6 grid of cards with different faces on them. These cards are numbered 1 through 36 and do not require being placed in any particular order.




THE COMPONENTS


The components in Wink include two decks of 36 cards. These decks feature the same 36 faces and numbers on one side but one deck has a black back and one deck has a white back to indicate which deck is being dealt to the players and which deck is being used as the cards in the 6 x 6 grid.



There are also 32 accuse cards used to accuse players of winking at one another and 8 player cards, each with a matching player token.




THE GAMEPLAY


To begin the game players will lay out one of the decks (white or black) in a 6 x 6 grid in the middle of the table. Players will then shuffle the other deck and give each player 7 cards. A player should examine these cards and make sure they know which cards they have. This is obvious for most games but this information is vital in this game. Each player should also choose a color and receive the player token, the player card, and 4 accuse cards and place everything in their playing area. Next, players should determine a first player and play begins.

The first player should examine the numbers of the cards in their hand and then choose one card in the 6 x 6 grid that they do not have by placing their player token on that card in the grid and announcing what number they have chosen. Announcing their number is important because as the game progresses players will have several things happening and may be too distracted to only see what number has been chosen. Once the player has chosen a number their turn is over and play moves to the player on their left. This player will also choose a card they do not have and place their player token on the card in the grid, again announcing the number.

Once play has transitioned from the first player the real game begins! While players around the table are going to be placing their tokens and announcing their numbers players are also going to have to attempt to wink at the player or players who has placed a token on any number or numbers that they possess. That may sound confusing so here is a break down of how a turn would go.



The first player examines his or her cards then places his or her player token on a card not in their hand. The red player has placed their player token on the number 10 card in the grid because they do not have the number ten card in their hand.



Once the red player has done this the second, and more important, aspect of the game begins. While the following players are placing their tokens on numbered cards they do not have in their hands they are also determining if any other players have placed a token on any cards they do possess.



The red player knows that they have the number 16 in their hand and sees that the green player has placed their green player token on the number 16 in the grid.





The red player's job would be to wink at the green player to let him or her know that the red player has the number 16 card in his or her hand.

When play gets back to each player they must immediately stop trying to figure out who had their card and announce who they think has their card. So when play gets back to the red player he or she would have to guess who had the number ten card. It is possible that no one had the number ten card or the red player did not see anyone wink, even though they may have winked at the red player. In this case the player simply guesses someone at the table, hoping to guess correctly. If the red player successfully announces who had the number ten card he or she would take their player token back from the middle of the table and place the number ten card that was in the grid under his or her player card. The player who had the number ten card in their hand would place their copy of the number ten card under their own player card. Therefore, each player in the partnership would score one point at the end of their game for their copy of the number ten card.

If a player is ever able to catch another player attempting to wink at someone else the accuser may stop play immediately and use once of their four accuse cards to announce which player was winking at the other. If the accuser is correct they take the card from the winker and from under the token of the player being winked at. In this case, the player's token would remain in an empty space on the grid until their next turn.



Play continues like this until one player cannot legally place their token or they are out of cards. When this occurs all players count the numbers of cards they have placed under their own player card. The player with the most cards wins the game.


FINAL THOUGHTS


I bought Wink on a recommendation and when it arrived it looked so ridiculous that I put it on the shelf and resigned myself to the fact that I would likely never play the game. That was in fact the case for about the first year I owned the game. One evening when I had what I thought was the right group and the right amount of time to play a quick filler I brought Wink off the shelf. I explained the rules and got some snickers about how strange and goofy the game sounded. Then we started playing and I realized I had BADLY misjudged this game. We had a blast playing this game and played it twice in the first sitting and have brought it out with several groups since.

Look, I am not claiming that the game is strategic but it is FUN and FUNNY. There are laugh out loud moments and ah-ha moments galore. The game offers up more to think about than you'd ever guess and it can actually be a little overwhelming at times, in a good way. The game is flat out fun. There can be some clunky moments like who caught an attempted wink first but if you play this game with the intent to have fun and not with a "to the death" mentality those moments are irrelevant.

This has become one of my most enjoyable games, not necessarily one of my best designed games, but most fun and enjoyable for sure and that is something I really value in board games. I enjoy strategy but I also enjoy having a good time with people while playing games. The game does not outstay it's welcome, ending just before you want it to (meaning just before you score points, not just before you get bored).

I highly recommend this game if you are looking for a fun party game that plays like a filler! Trust me on this one.



Rating: 7/10



If you enjoy my reviews please recommend and check out my geeklist For the Meeple, by the Meeple
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Jonathan Takagi
United States
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Just out of curiosity, what would the game have to do to have you rate it higher than a 6? If the game is as much fun as you say (and it is, I've played it), why is it not a well designed game?
 
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James Torr
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Nice review! I've had a lot of fun with this game -- enough to rate it an 8
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Michael Carpenter
United States
West Virginia
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jtakagi wrote:
Just out of curiosity, what would the game have to do to have you rate it higher than a 6? If the game is as much fun as you say (and it is, I've played it), why is it not a well designed game?


I have given your comment a lot of thought and asked some friends of mine about the matter since you posted it and I think where I gave the game a six came from my same misjudgment of the game to begin with. It's almost like it doesn't feel like it deserves a higher rating (which is by no means fair) but when I ask myself, would I play this game right now? I definitely would so I will give it a 7. I won't go higher simply because while I will suggest it if the moment is right, I am not going to be pulling it out every time I am playing games or even want to really.
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Jonathan Takagi
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I appreciate your thoughtfulness, I hope you don't feel like I was pressuring you into changing your rating. I find that on BGG party games often are only allowed middling ratings, often not deemed worthy of higher ratings due to their simplicity. But since they are an individual choice, I completely understand others that think differently.
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Michael Carpenter
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No pressure at all, more like help really. I think if I'm going to post reviews I should have a rating system that is more relatable and it's easier for me to adjust my mentality a little than try to change a set rating system. I really do appreciate the comment and I hope you continue read some of my reviews and comment as much you'd like!
 
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