Bitter Sting of Tears.
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The components are well made and fairly kid-resistant. The cards are on high gloss stock and are thinker than average. There are 35 plastic fish, a game board, 5 sets of 11 cards each, starfish marker.
The game plays in two stages.
In the first stage players add their fish to the board 1 at a time until they are out of fish. The rules are simple, you can’t start next to your own fish unless there is no other place to put your fish.
In the second phase, players begin to eat. To eat a fish you place the marker between your fish and another fish. Each player plays a card and whoever has a bigger total of fish in their stack and card value wins and “eats” the other fish by stacking his fish on top of it. There are special cards too, the squid is an escape that always works and the shark wins unless the other player also plays the shark. Ties, including two sharks, remove all fish from the oard. Once used the card is discarded.
If a fish is eaten, the winner stacks his fish on top of it and that stack is now more powerful. If the stack is taller than 5, then everything over 5 is removed and put in the players pile of eaten fish.
The game ends when there is only one color of fish left on the board. At that point players count up all the fish left on the board and all the fish they've eaten and whoeve has the most wins.
This review is part of a series of reviews I’m doing as I evaluate games my wife may use in her classroom or that I’m using with my Boy Scouts. Apart from the normal review, I try to identify the kinds of intelligence that the game will use. For an explanation of multiple intelligences, see: my blog post at: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/786097
Counting your stack and your opponents requires addition, which can help them. It also requires some planning to ensure your fish is in the right spot to eat without being eaten whenever possible.
Because the stacks are visual, spatial intelligence can help determine your strength. Movement is easy, but visualizing it can really help.
The naturalist often turns out to be better than average at card counting which can be important. If you have an idea what your opponents have left, you can better plan your attacks.. The theme will also appeal to the naturalist.
The game recommends 8 and up, but I’ve had good success playing it with kids as young as 6. If you need to handicap it, you can remove some of the numbers from one players deck or play with all his discards face up.
I’ve never met anyone who didn’t have a good time with this game.
This is a great simple game for kids which adults can also play. The mechanics are simple and the addition makes a good educational component. It does suffer from a player elimination problem, but it usually goes fast enough to not be too painful.
- Last edited Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:54 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Thu Aug 24, 2006 6:32 am