Game of HAM – Board Game Review
Follow Genre: Party, Adult
Players: 3-15+
Age: 18+
Duration: +- 30 minutes
Distributor: Czech Games Edition

Game of HAM – Board Game Review

Site Score
7.7
Good: Familiar yet original, Easy to play, A lot of variations
Bad: A bit niche, Some rules can be interpreted quite freely
User Score
9.5
(4 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 9.5/10 (4 votes cast)

We reckon that in the endless stream of new board and card games, ‘Game of HAM’ will not really be on your radar. This fairly unknown project nonetheless piqued our interest when we saw the team behind the game do some promotion on social media. We were somewhat intrigued by its name, and when we learned that the game is somewhat of a Cards Against Humanity with an actual board game underneath, we were very interested in taking a closer look at the game. Upon receiving the sturdy box, with somewhat shoddy (intended) artwork on it, we were eager to see how adult and ‘dirty’ this game would turn out to be.

Contents

  • 810 cards
  • 4 (double-sided) board pieces
  • 16 player pieces
  • 4 placeholders
  • 1 rulebook
  • 1 quickstart guide

While somewhat simplistic in terms of complexity, the contents of the box are sturdy and nicely made. The cards all are quite distinguishable from one another, and have proper design. The placeholders are basically the coasters for the colored cards, and they look like giant colored hams, which perfectly suits the game. The board consists out of different pieces, making it so you can somewhat create your own route for the pawns to follow. The pawns are also small cardboard colored hams, albeit very tiny in comparison to the placeholders. Everything is solid and feels qualitative.

There’s only one remark we could give and that is one about the box. When unpacking the cards, you’ll have two trays to store them in. Sadly, these are not dedicated trays, thus everything will eventually boil down to two long stacks of cards. As the game includes different cards and one tray is too big for all the pink cards, you’ll have to put them with the other cards. You can of course fill one tray completely, but then the other cards in the second tray will not stay up nicely. It would have been nice to have smaller dedicated trays per card type, or just have a few dividers added to the package for user comfort.

Mechanics

While Game of HAM can be played in many different variations, the base game is a hybrid of a card game and a board game. The game is very much like Cards Against Humanity, where you have to form somewhat hilarious and dirty taglines, to come out on top. When winning a round, you get to add the board game part, where you then move the number of spaces that were on the prompt card, which you then won. This concept is exactly like the aforementioned CAH, where one player acts as the judge, draws a grey prompt card, and has the other players drop one of their pink ‘trick’ cards. The judge then decides who wins, and that winner becomes the next judge, and so on.

The overall concept is simple, and you are literally playing within minutes. The game then also adds other colored cards to the mix, which can give you an edge on the opposition by playing certain effects. Overall, it’s a healthy mix of card and board game, and this works surprisingly well.

We noticed that the developer(s) of the game also encountered a few rules that could be interpreted differently, thus they added the rule that the host of the game night can decide and put down his veto when there’s an argument. The game is also quite modular, as the rulebook includes many alternative rules and basically also tells you that you can remove mechanics if they bother you, and just play the game as you like. You can even play the game without the board, or you can leave the special cards behind, etc. This concept works surprisingly well, as you don’t really need extra items to spice things up. The rules also include drinking for more adult versions, so we can easily say that this is not a game to play with your toddlers or even teens.

Luck or Strategy?

No matter which of the game’s variants you’re playing, the game does rely heavily on luck, be it the cards you draw, or who the round’s judge picks as the winner. There’s actually not much more to it. It also depends on how the other player(s) want to screw you over. In a way, it’s actually best to have the judge look away, or turn around, when the players drop their pink cards that should be combined with the judge’s grey card. This way he cannot play favoritism or prevent the player closest to the goal to remain there. While it is of course not nice to purposely be the loser in this scenario, we know some players can get a bit competitive and the aforementioned solution would solve this problem.

Conclusion

Game of HAM is an entertaining Card Against Humanity-esque experience with a lot of different possibilities. While this may not be the easiest game to play with half the world in lockdown, you can make up certain rules yourself to make things better suited for a low number of players. We were quite amused with the experience, and even though a game like this doesn’t have a very big strategic element embedded in its mechanics, it’s easy to learn, quick to play and it’s some good old fashioned fun.

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Rating: 9.5/10 (4 votes cast)
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Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Game of HAM - Board Game Review, 9.5 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

1 Comment

  1. 3rd-strike.com | What The Dub?! – Review
    April 20, 2021, 00:02

    […] as well as an actual hybrid card and board game that was made based on the same principles which we reviewed a while ago. This time, we arrive at What The Dub?! which shows you small clips of different movies where some […]

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