Move over bears, Phil Walker Harding’s SUSHI GO! from Coiledspring and Gamewright is tickling our taste buds in this fast, friendly, family, set collecting filler game!
*Card laying* Pick and Pass * Fun * Filler * Simultaneous Play * Easy to Learn * Open Information * Luck * Card Drafting *
Praise Be! Phil Walker Harding’s fast playing card game, SUSHI GO!, whizzed onto our tables this week! Has it been a tasty treat, or was there something fishy about it? Read on to find out!
Where Are The Bears?
Okay, so PWH is the Bärenpark Baron. No doubt this man can design a great family tile laying game. His bears are the stars of the show in one of Mini-Meeple’s all-time favourites, and he is even forgiven for including those who aren’t strictly bears in the zoological sense! We love it (and even more so now we have an insert for the box!). So when I found out SUSHI GO! was his creation, I was very excited to give it a try!
Setting Up The Pass!
SUSHI GO! is super fast filler card game for 2 – 5 players where you’re collecting delicious sushi and trying to grab the best dish combinations as they whizz by on an invisible conveyor belt.
It couldn’t be easier to set up. Just shuffle all the sushi cards and deal a hand to each player – the number of cards in your hand will depend on the number of players. Then place the remaining sushi cards face down in a draw stack, and you’re ready to go!
Lasting just 3 rounds, this is some speedy pick and pass play! Selecting one card to keep from your hand of scrummy sushi bites, everyone simultaneously reveals their chosen card and then you pass the rest on to the player on your left. This happens again until everybody has all their cards for that round face up in front of them. Then the first scoring takes place.
Each dish scores differently so you’ll be collecting sets in different combinations.
- Sashimi – if you collect a set of 3 you’ll get 10 points
- Maki Rolls – the player with the most rolls gets 6 points and 2nd place gets 3 points
- Tempura prawns – if you collect a pair you’ll get 5 points
- Dumplings – these increase in value the more you collect
- Each Squid Nigiri is worth 3 points
- Each Salmon Nigiri is worth 2 points
- Each Egg Nigiri is worth1 point
There are also some tactical cards in the mix:
- Wasabi – the point value for a Squid, Salmon or Egg Nigiri card is tripled when added to a Wasabi on your plate
- Puddings – whoever collects the most by the end of the game gets 6 points whereas the player with the least will have a -6 point deduction!
- Chopsticks – If you play Chopsticks, you can pick two cards from your hand that turn (but you must return the Chopsticks back into the cards you pass on.
Once scored, all the cards are discarded, and everyone draws a fresh hand for the next round. Note that any pudding cards you have collected are not discarded. They accumulate over the course of the game and score big if you have the most but hurt if you don’t have the sweetest tooth at the table!
The player with the most points after 3 rounds is the SUSHI GO! Supremo!
Hungry Little Hands!
This is such a cute, fast, fun, family filler game. Mini-Meeple had no problem picking up the rules, and everybody melted at the sweet styling (even ever stoic Shadowmeeplemedia!).
The set collection mechanic here is a great way for Mini-Meeple to develop his skills in keeping one eye on what he needs, with the other on what his opponents are also trying to collect. Forcing him to focus on building sets one (or occasionally two) cards at a time really helps his concentration and keeps his mind on the goal. Receiving new cards each turn is also exciting, and his smiley little face has no filter when he gets something particularly tasty!
With each set only requiring one or two cards (unless you’re a Dumpling diva like me!) and very little downtime, he feels like he is achieving something every round. And that’s great for confidence building across the board (or table in this case!). The fact you can’t steal each other’s cards also makes this game feel friendlier – Mini-Meeple is still at that stage where he takes theft personally (although at 40 years old so am I haha). And that makes for a sweeter gaming session all round.
Decisions definitely get a little tenser as each round progresses. You see what others are collecting and this gives pause for thought. Do you hate draft Dumplings to block them? Or do you focus on building up your own Maki Roll mountain? Passing on Pudding is always an ever present risk too as you could end up in negative Nellie territory should you do as your dentist tells you!
SUSHI GO! has been so easy to learn and play and it is a real colour pop on the table. It also feels like one where the more players, the tenser the trade-offs so we are really looking forward to trying a 4/5 player game. We also have the 2 player variant to try so lots more gaming fun with this one planned! The simple, easy fun in SUSHI GO! makes this an absolute keeper in the favouritefoefunlearning library!
[Please note that a copy of this game was kindly provided by the publishers for review. I am not paid for my comments, however, and all opinions are my own]. I am also not affiliated to or sponsored by any retail store.