A game that I recently played strictly based on the online reviews I had read was Dixit (honestly, when I looked at the game at the store, I thought it looked stupid; but I bought it anyway). In full disclosure, party games are not really my favorite genre. They can be fun occasionally, or in the right setting, but for the most part, I'd rather play a strategy game. However, when I went to visit some friends, Dixit seemed much more appropriate than a 2-3 hour mental workout game.
In Dixit, players each have 6 cards with weird pictures in their hand. They take turns being the "storyteller", who selects one of his cards and makes up a sentence about it - it can be a one word sentence, can be sung, or whatever else you can think of. Often we would have sentences like "All dressed up with nowhere to go", or "I'm thinking of fish for dinner", or "Lucky devil". After the storyteller states his sentence, everyone else picks one of their cards that they think matches the same sentence and throw it in the middle. The cards are shuffled up and flipped over and then everyone (but the storyteller) uses their numbered pieces to secretly vote on which picture belonged to the storyteller. From here, points are awarded based on who voted for what, and the storyteller gets points if some (but not all) of the other players got the picture correct. The game goes on like this until the entire pile of cards has been used, at which time the player with the most points wins.
|Over the rainbow?|
The next pro to Dixit is the ambiguity of the images themselves. The images are really just random fantasy pictures about nothing in particular. There are images of toys, cats, paintings, feasts, etc, but none of them are really about anything. On just about any of them you could say to yourself, "I have no idea what is going on there", and that's really the point. The art was very wonderfully created about... nothing. I can just imagine the designer of this game talking to the artist and saying, "Hey, I need you to create about 80 pictures of nothing in particular. Do you have a 5 year old kid around that we can use as a consultant? Maybe you can talk to him about what's going on in his mind and then draw it. Oh, he thinks that the sky is green and that it'd be neat to have raindrops that were filled with animals? Even better!"
|I make music?|
My only real concern about Dixit is that you go through all of the cards every time that you play the game. Because of this, you are going to be reusing the pictures with each play. This means that it's up to you as the player to come up with creative new uses for the cards each time. Whereas this is something that will work wonderfully for artistic people, I think this might push the limits for my engineering friends' imaginations. Either way, this is really a neutral point more than a negative, because I think that part of the fun of the game may be in the challenge of seeing the same image over and over and making up new stories for it each time.
Overall, I give Dixit a 9.5/10. This game has jumped to the top of my party game list, as it is something that is creative and fun, but is also something that could be engaging to both extroverts and introverts (no standing up and singing, or acting, or anything like that.... unless you want to). If you even mildly enjoy party games, I would definitely recommend trying Dixit out.
If you like Dixit, you might also enjoy Say Anything, Fictionaire, and Rory's Story Cubes, or the Board Game Family's Dixit: Odyssey Review.