A new company for me, Tactic had on display at Toy Fair an eclectic mix of children’s, trivia, abstract, and party games, all of which are due sometime during the summer and priced at $20.
Totem is an abstract game for 2-4, played on a color-coded checkerboard with totem pieces that move like the rooks in Chess (any distance in a straight orthogonal line). While the goal of Totem is simply to get all one’s pieces to the opposite side, the challenge is to maneuver them around opponents’ pieces, as well as around a blocking color that changes throughout the game. That blocking color is initially determined at random by a “stop color” card, however, a player that lands on a black space also has the option to change it to any one they choose.
A new entry in the company’s iKnow line of trivia games, iKnow All In lets the reader participate in the guessing by hiding the answers to its multiple-choice questions with heat-activated printing. To reveal the correct answer, the reader only has to hold their finger on the designated spot for a few seconds. Another, iKnow Hit List, incorporates only questions with multiple valid answers. But what makes it tough is that for each question only the eight listed answers will be scored as correct. For both these games, getting the answer right yourself is good for points, but so is guessing who else will have the answer right.
X-Tiles is a Dominoes-type game with pieces colored and shaped in such a way that players never have a turn in which they can’t place a tile with an adjacent match. If, however, they can place a tile that matches two adjacent colors at the same time, then they get an immediate extra turn. The goal is to be the first to get rid of all one’s tiles.
Zombie Labyrinth is a spin-and-move game played on a modular board. The goal in this one is to collect the most brains. Every spin gives a choice of directions to move. One of the possible spin results, however, is the mad scientist. Moving his pawn allows players to steal brains from their opponents.
In Colorology, one player each turn plays the colorologist, secretly choosing a preferred color for the current item card. The other players attempt to guess the colorologist’s choice.
With Women vs. Men Alias, Tactic strays in to sensitive territory, creating separate decks of cards with women’s words and men’s words. Women play with the men’s deck, men with the women’s deck, trying to get each other to say the word on the card without actually repeating it in the clue.
For younger children, Tactic has coming out 3 Little Pigs. It’s a simple game that involves rolling a die and building up from a straw house, to a wood house, to a sturdy one made of bricks. However, a kid that rolls a wolf gets to squeeze the wolf-head thingamajig to try to blow someone else’s house down.