Monday, February 27, 2023

One last stab at Ghosts Love Candy Too Roll and Fright

Ghosts Love Candy Too Roll and Fright is a collection of three Roll and Write games themed around friendly ghosts and trick or treaters. I think they started life as stretch goals for a Kickstarter campaign. I waffled about writing about it as one or three blogs but each game is its own thing and I’ve devoted blogs to slighter games. 

All three games have charming, kid friendly artwork that I’m sure is from the Ghosts Love Candy Too card game. They are also all multi-player solitaire which means they play one to how-many-you-got.

Tricky Treats is the longest and most complex game in the set. Not that is saying much. All three games are light and casual.

It also actually comes the closest to the theme of the original card game. You are not just trying to steal candy from kids, you also want to avoid scaring them away. Kids who run away screaming from ghosts are kids you can’t steal candy from.

The main part of the player sheet is six kids. Each kid has a six space candy track (each space marked with a different kind of candy and a die pip) and a die number with a scare track. The candy tracks are also grouped in groups of two or three spaces. Completing a group gives you either a bonus or a special power.

Here’s the deal. Someone rolls two dice. Everyone picks a die to check of a candy space that matches that die and the other die for a scare track for that number’s kid.

If you fill up a scare track, you can no longer use that kid’s candy track and you’ll lose points for it at the end of the game. You still get any special powers you unlock. And you can still use that number for a scare die, getting a free pass on scaring kids that round.

If you roll doubles, you get to check off any candy space and don’t have to scare any kids. Honestly, that’s a big deal. Rolling doubles makes a huge difference.

After sixteen rounds, most points wins. Unless you’re playing solitaire. Then, just enjoy the experience.

(And, yes, I’ve left off all the ways you can get bonus actions and what the special powers. I’m not completely taking the place of a rule book)

You can’t help but compare Tricky Treats to Haunt the Block and Boogaloo. Just the fact that you had to use both dice instead of picking one of them added some oomph to the whole experience. 

I also felt like the special powers in Tricky Treats were more central to the overall game. You could go in, planning on which powers you’d want to focus on. There is room for planning and more than one plan.

On the downside, the inevitable running low on choices felt more like a design necessity rather than a feature. I didn’t care for Haunt the Block but running low on choices felt like a more organic part of the game play.

Okay. I felt that Tricky Treats had some limitations but I had fun with it. While I think I will get more mileage out of Boogaloo (I think it will work well in the classroom), I think Tricky Treats is more ambitious and interesting.

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