Kittens in a Blender
Approx Play Time: 10-20 minutes
For Ages: 8+
Learning Curve: Easy
Publisher: Closet Nerd Games, Sandstorm Productions LLC
Price: $9.99 retail
Best Kitten: Fish stick / Ninja
Quick Almost Tweet-able Review:
Kittens in a Blender (KiaB) has a simple premise: save your kittens in the box and kill all other kittens in the blender. This is one of those games that has a lot going for it with very little holding it back. The game design is simple and intuitive. The art featured on every kitten card is just beautiful. The only slight gaffe it has is in card quality and theme. These two things in no way hold back the overall experience from being one that all should try.
KiaB comes with everything all included in the box. Upon opening it you are met with 4 card types: dogs in the kitchen (cards that switch players hands), blend (turns the blender on), blend pulse (stops the blender), and kitten cards (which come in four different colors). Each player picks a color of kitten to be theirs and all non-chosen are removed from the deck. All players then draw five cards and are required to play two cards a turn until every card has been played.
Kittens can be placed in one of three places: the box (which keeps them safe), the blender (which kills them), and the table (a spot in-between the blender and box). Strategy comes into play as a player gets two points for each saved kitten in the box but negative one point for every kitten blended. Upon someone activating the blender all kittens in the box are safe for the game, all kittens on the counter move to the blender, and all kittens in the blender are dead for the game.
There is an equal amount of luck and skill in Kittens in a Blender. The only knock the gameplay may have is there being a slight emphasis on your opening hand. Usually things are perfectly fine but on a rare occasion in which you have no kittens at all but are forced to play two cards a turn it can be an upward struggle to get into the contest. Luckily you’ll be able to get through multiple games relatively quickly. Add about five minutes onto each round for each additional player.
Kittens in a Blender comes in a box about the size of an average paperback book. There are two oversized cards inside the box (The Blender and The Box) that you can place in your overturned game box to use during play. Along with those come sixty-four kittens, four teams of sixteen kittens each, that are all unique with their own adorable personalities. The art of KiaB stands out when you see some of these precious kittens that you’re attempting to save/destroy. Brent Knudson and Mike Vaillancourt did a fantastic job in giving every kitten a personality all their own and a look too adorable for their own good. The drawings are all done in a Manga-esk style that adds even more charm to the game.
The only slight knocks the game gets in presentation is the box it comes in and card quality. While it tends to not be an issue with every box there have been some that have problems opening and get torn/ripped when attempting to do so. The card quality is also that of a normal Magic: The Gathering card. Which means if you play the game extensively you might want to place these cards in sleeves.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a game that is this much fun at a price tag of ten dollars. Kittens in a Blender is one of the games you can add to your library that will get the attention of people and get them talking. The name alone insures that. Thankfully the name is backed up by an art style and game play style that is well suited for anyone who happens to stumble across it. From your veteran board and card game players to people who enjoy just playing Uno sometimes, Kittens in a Blender has fun for anyone willing to take a glance past its morbid title.
Biggest Positive: The Kittens
Every single kitten has a personality and unique name. Whenever you play with a new person or group they’ll erupt in laughter and smiles at the complete adorableness of these Kittens. Find someone who doesn’t give out a chuckle or “Awwww” for at least one of these Kittens and I would be very amazed.
Biggest Flaw: Not ideal at 2 players
Like most games that have 2-X amount of players the game can be played with 2 people but it isn’t as fun. It just doesn’t really have enough in it for a solid two player game. Most games of this type all suffer from the same problem so it doesn’t make that fault stand out too bad. Just be aware if you plan on playing this with one other person it won’t be as enjoyable as a table full of opponents.
Verdict: Buy This Now
Go to your local game shop and plop down $10 to pick this game up. It’s travel-sized and well worth owning. For family gatherings or a break in-between some serious role-playing or board gaming. With everything Kittens in a Blender has going for it there is no other game that packs this much value into this cheap of a price tag.