Chris Game Gumshoes
MFG: Blue Orange Games
#of Players: 2-4
Age Range: 6+
Overall Construction: The box has a form fitted plastic base that sits inside the box, although the card slot should be a little deeper to keep them from sliding all over inside of the box. The game pieces themselves are made with a nice solid plastic and detailed enough that they could be used in a child’s magic kit.
The cards are a basic card stock, but this brings up one of the issues I have with the pieces themselves. The cards have symbols on them that are in the same color as the items themselves or they are greyed out.
Unless, you compare the rabbit on a color & a grey card side by side, it may be difficult to tell them apart. I would recommend that in future editions that the rabbits should be a different color, possibly pink or blue.
Gameplay: To start the game, shuffle the cards and give a set of components to each player. This means each player will have a Top Hat, a Cup, a Barrel, a Coin, & a Rabbit. Players then decide how many cards they will play to win the game. I have played several games where we were having so much fun, that we played all the way through the deck and didn’t even bother to determine the winner.
When all players are ready, a card is flipped and players race to stack their pieces to match the image on the card. There are some rules to determine a match. 1. If an object does not appear on the card, it is not used. 2. If an item appears in grey, it has to be hidden. 3. If an item has stars around it, then nothing can hide inside it. 4. When you complete the stack, shout “Top That!”. If you are wrong, everyone, but you can keep trying to make the stack and shout Top That.
We were playing with a group of our hard of hearing friends recently and found that it would be difficult to play the game the way it was meant to be played, because shouting “Top That!” might not be heard. We determined that players would knock on the table when they had their stack complete. This helped out substantially and proved that this was a game that could be played by anyone. I will advise against knocking too hard as you might accidentally topple the other players stack.
Yes/No Recommend: I love this game. It has caught interest in every venue I have played it, whether at a family gathering, visiting my friends, drawing in the elderly at a famous buffet restaurant, and even at a bar. I had one person say they felt like they should be stacking cups. This game is great for keeping you manual dexterity, hand eye coordination, and reasoning skills sharp. It’s great for passing time and making new friends. This game would make a great gift for someone with a love for magic & magicians.
Where to Get It: This game is fairly new, but I have seen it turning up in a few of the Big Box Retailers. As always, check with your local mom & pop game store to see about the availability. For more information on this game please visit Blue Orange’s website here http://www.blueorangegames.com/index.php/games/top-that