GS TABLE GAMES Jungle Speed Review

This time on GS Tabletop Games we try our luck at Jungle Speed. A quick game of skill and speed that is perfect for parties or work breaks or at the local pub and has to be one the best value for money games ever!

They say good things come in small packages and in this case Jungle Speed is the perfect example of a tabletop game that delivers on that idea is guaranteed to get some laughs screams mistakes and silliness. This is the secret history behind the game.

Jungle Speed was invented approximately 3000 years ago in subtropical Spidopotamia by the Abouloubou tribe. The Abouloubou chose their chiefs using a traditional game played with eucalyptus leaves. This game was passed on secretly from generation to generation, until Tom and Yako, the last descendants of the Abouloubou, decided to reveal it to the world.

The law of the jungle: The aim of the game is to be the first player to get rid of all their cards and be declared the chief of the Abouloubou. 

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I have to say that when I first heard about Jungle Speed I thought it would be a simple game for a younger crowd. I could not be more wrong because while the game is still for a younger crowd this is a must have for adults as well. The rules take about 3 minutes to learn and after 3 rounds you will be hooked.

The game starts with the pack of 80 cards being shuffled and then dealt out evenly to all players. You then place the Totem in the middle and the first player takes the top card from their deck, which is always face down, and flips it over then puts in the centre near the totem but so that all players can clearly see the design on the card. The next player does the same and places their card down and has a look to see if their card matches the first player’s card. As you keep showing your cards you place them in your active pile near the totem. This will keep going until there are two players who have the same designs on their active cards then it becomes a duel.

A duel is between the players who have the same designs and to win the duel you must be the first player to grab the totem in the middle of the table. If you win the duel you have to give all your active cards to the player who loses the duel. The loser then places both his active cards and the cards handed to them from the winner so their pile is now bigger. The aim is to get rid of all your cards and be declared the winner.

However if you go to grab the totem but it is not a match then you have failed and you collect all the active cards that are on the table. You can also gain extra cards if you go for the totem in a correct duel but knock over the totem.

Now that sounds like a really simple game of snap and in a way it is but imagine Snap on speed and with muscles and you have Jungle Speed. The difference comes in the actual cards and the rule changes. Wait rule changes you say. Yep and this is how the game really comes alive. I will talk about the rules change and the colours later.

Let’s talk about the actual cards which are not what they seem at first glance. As mentioned there are 80 cards in all and they are various shapes and styles but some look the same with slight differences. The first set is what I affectionately call the ninja stars. You can see from the image that there are 4 different shapes but at quick glance they can look the same. This gives you an idea of how you can be wrong. The next set are the coloured dots with one set inside the border and the other going over the border. Another set are the squiggly lines which either come in a square shape or as not string type image but between all the designs you can really think it is a match and be wrong. Then there is the circle set which is four designs of a circle but inside there are cross lines with very subtle differences. The last set is a trio design which has two of the same symbol and another symbol in the middle but these are all mixed up.

So now you have an idea of how cunning the cards can be lets talk about rule changes. There are three special cards that will change the game instantly when flipped over. The first is a card showing 4 arrows pointing inwards but all different colours. This rule change means that instead of matching shapes you have to just match the colours of the card so two reds or two blues for example and the shapes can be anything.

The next rule change is four arrows pointing outwards which means that all the players will get their cards ready and after a countdown from 3 to 1 they all flip over at the same time and see if a duel happens. This can be a quite an exciting rule change. The last rule change is the funniest with four arrows all pointing inwards but all white. This means when it comes up it is the first player to grab the Totem is the winner and places his cards under the Totem. This rule change will also be the one where someone will knock the Totem flying and then lose and collect all the cards so be warned.

A classic example of how much fun this can be is that a game I was playing I saw a rules change card with the arrows and I though yes I will grab the Totem first. I triumphantly grab it and yelled “YES” at the top of my lungs. Everyone else just looked at me and laughed because it was the other rule change and I had to pick up about 20 cards. Nooooooooooo.

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The game does come in a box but the genius of it is that it also comes in a little travel bag so that you can quite literally carry it in your bag or even coat pocket and this is a big plus for gamers. Also at a price tag of around £13 this is a bargain because the game has quite literally unlimited replayability and the quality of the cards and the totem look great..

The age groups are for 6 and above in my opinion as I have now played it with various age groups and all have loved this game. It can last from 15 minutes to 30 and you can easily play 3 or 4 games in a row without getting bored.

Overall this is a game that I urge everyone to grab and add to your collection.

GS RATING: 5/5

For more board game reviews on Geek Syndicate go HERE

Source: Jungle Speed
Reporter: Montoya

 

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