Coconuts Review

coconuts board game

So, I heard that there was a game where you each have a monkey catapult and you shoot coconuts.  I was sold.  I thought about that being the extent of my review, but since I was given a copy from the publisher, I figured I should say a few more things about the game.

In Coconuts, each player is given two cards, a pile of rubber coconuts, and a plastic monkey catapult.  At the start of any player's turn, someone can play one of the cards from their hand (but once a card is played, it's out of the game).  When it is your turn, you take a coconut and attempt to shoot it into one of the cups on the table.  If you make it in a cup (that you hadn't already claimed), then you get to take that cup and place it in front of you.  If you claim a red cup, you get to take another shot.  Once a player has six cups in front of him, he is the winner.  Alternately, if the players run out of coconuts by shooting them all into cups (after you shoot your initial pile of coconuts, you can use any of the ones still in play), then the player who has the most coconuts in the cups that they control wins.

monkey catapult from Coconuts game
The awesome monkey catapult
So, if this isn't your first one of my reviews to read, you're probably aware that I'm in love with dexterity games.  But, what makes a good dexterity game is generally that it is ridiculous.  Coconuts knocks that criteria out of the park.  Not only do you have monkey catapults (yes, I've legitimately used that phrase twice in this review now), but you also have odd shaped rubber coconuts (that look very similar to peanut M&M's).  The coconuts themselves add a lot to the game, as they are not all the exact same size, and they're also not round.  They are shaped like coconuts, so one side goes to a bit of a point while the other side is round.  This causes them to fly strangely and to bounce oddly.  It also helps balance the playing field between a person who has played several games and a beginning player.  The person who has played a lot will probably be a little bit better, but the new player will still feel like they have a chance to win.

Another necessity for a good dexterity game is that the components are high quality and will last, as these games get a lot more wear than a standard board game would.  (After all, you're hurtling some of the components through the air.)  I can't speak to the longevity of the components, as I haven't stress tested them, but everything in Coconuts seems very well constructed.  The cups are a thick plastic, the coconuts are a high quality rubber (or plastic - but it feels rubbery), and the monkeys also seem sturdy.  The only piece that I can envision breaking is the spring in the monkey (that makes it a catapult).  But even with that, I haven't had any problems whatsoever with my copy of the game, and I think that it would last for quite a long time.

game of Coconuts in play
Those coconuts will be lost... it's just a matter of time.
There are a couple of (incredibly minor) things that I will list as cons for Coconuts.  First, the cards are basically useless.  At least half of the time that I play the game, I don't bother with them.  Since they are each one use, they can basically be used to increase the chances that a player will miss their shot.  But, in my experience, there's a really good chance they were going to miss that shot anyway.  And some of the cards, like the one that lets you blow on their coconut as their shot is in the air, are even more useless.  The cards don't detract from the game, but they seem to be an unnecessary addition just to make the game have "more" to it.

The second "con" is that you're going to lose coconuts.  Be ready to play backstop when you're playing this game, as you'll need to make sure that you catch all of the flying coconuts that your opponents shoot.  Also, they'll wind up rolling under tables, bookshelves, etc.  This is going to happen to you.  It might be better to play at your house if you want to ensure that your game stays complete.  (They did include some extra coconuts in the game, though - apparently at least some play testing went into this!  I think that you can also buy replacement coconuts, as when they sent me a review copy, they sent me a separate bag of extra coconuts right off the bat.)

Overall, I give Coconuts a 9.0/10.  It's a great dexterity game that draws people in to watch it and that everyone who sees it wants to play.  I envision it getting played for years to come.

If you want to read about more awesome dexterity games, check out PitchCarRiff Raff, and Toc Toc Woodman.

I would like to thank Mayday Games for providing a review copy of Coconuts.

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