Originally, we had Gyrating Hamsters from the publishers of the same name, now they bring us Monkies! I’m not sure what exactly will come next but I am sure it will be good fun. Monkey The Card Game is on Kickstarter now and will run until June 13th. For a very reasonable price you can secure your copy of a great family-fun card game.
Monkey is a game for 1 to 5 players, so should suit most family-accommodating tables. Setting up is very swift, comprising of a swift shuffle, setting up the tree, picking your monkey and then the mayhem can commence. The idea is to be the first to climb the tree and then complete the tree top challenge. Of course, it’s never really going to be a simple, mischief-free endeavour. A spell card deck is included to cause absolute chaos and confusion for those involved.
Every turn each player will draw a card from the tree deck. These are coloured numbers that you will need to beat each level of the tree and climb to banana-fuelled glory. After drawing a tree card you need to draw the top card of the spell deck. Spell deck cards can range from beneficial to absolutely devastating. For instance, the Helpful Banana card allows you to draw another tree card, whereas Slide causes you to move down the tree trunk. If you choose to play with the “Spell-o-rama Expansion” more cards are added to the spell deck. A standout spell card for me would be Piggy Bank. This card has you call a colour and all players have to give you all their cards of that colour.
Each section of the tree trunk is flipped when you want to move up a level and you have to use the cards in your hand to exceed the corresponding number. However, you can’t use the same colour unless it’s a wild card (coloured black) or a multicoloured number. If you can beat it then you move up to the next stage of the trunk and turn the card back over. If you can’t beat the number you fall down a level. After a game or two you can introduce traps. These make it harder to go up a level and can introduce another level of strategic play.
What begins as a really simple, accessible game quickly turns into a typhoon with varying levels of difficulty and strategy. Sometimes it can be a bit tricky to learn all the new rules for a game, but Monkey is so easy thanks to an enjoyable but not condescending simplicity. As long as you actually read the rules fully you can play almost perfectly beyond your first game. Included with the game are several ‘cheat sheet’ cards that show what all the spells do.
With simple gameplay and big, bold artwork Monkey will undoubtedly hold the attention of the youngest gamers. The simple maths frame work would be an excellent way of engaging children in learning both numbers and colours. The artwork on the back of the cards is really nicely done even to my standard, so maybe it isn’t just the kids that Monkey will keep spell-bound for hours.
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