Welcome to The Game Shelf!

After getting into the board game hobby at the end of 2014, we've decided to share our thoughts on the games we're collecting on our shelves. The collection has certainly expanded over the last few years and we've been making up for lost time!

Sometimes our opinions differ, so Amy will be posting reviews every Tuesday and Fi will post on Thursdays. We hope you enjoy reading some of our opinions on board games - especially those for two players.

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Sunday, 30 June 2019

The Game Shelf Reviews:- Nobjects

Game: Nobjects

Publisher: Pegasus Spiele

Designer: Ludovic Gimet

Year: 2019




Nobjects, from Pegasus Spiele, is a party game for 3-6 players. It falls into the category of a 'Pictionary-style' game where one player draws whilst other players guess what they're drawing. The catch with Nobjects is that it doesn't include any pencils - you're tracing a picture with your finger on the table!

With a crowded market for 'say what you see' party games and some fantastic games like Telestrations and Concept to choose from, can Nobjects make an impression?




Gameplay

At the start of the game all the cards are separated into easy, medium and hard difficulty decks. Each round one player is the drawer, while everyone else is a guesser. The drawer will take a card from one of the decks (the more points you have the harder the deck you must draw from) and then roll a die. The die roll determines which of the 6 words on the card they must draw. The catch being that they aren't allowed to use a pencil and paper, they aren't allowed to talk or mime. They simply have to trace a shape along the table with a finger.


While they are drawing everyone else is guessing to try and get the right answer. If the secret word is guessed correctly before the time limit expires then both the drawer and the guesser get one point, should time expire then no points are given out. When a player reaches 6 points they win the game.


Amy’s Final thoughts

The world of party games now has many big names in it, but when you actually look at games like Codenames or Telestrations, the gameplay is simple enough, but you definitely need to spend an amount of time explaining the rules. Then there is the inevitable person who fails to understand the game until half way through the first round. Simplicity is a wonderful goal for a party game and here Nobjects has hit the nail right on the head! How do you play the game? Draw the chosen word with a finger, you win if you get someone to guess it. That's all you need to say to get a game of Nobjects started!

The game certainly has a few quirks, the mention of a timer in the rules, but lack of a timer included in the box is a strange one (I accept that everyone has a smart device capable of being a timer these days, but I like my game nights to be as analogue as possible). The scoring may also be a little too biased towards good guessers, while you may find your points income slows as you have to draw harder cards, if someone is left behind on the easy cards then guessing their words is easy points. Sure this could all be tweaked and balanced to make a fairer game. But frankly as soon as you are worrying about who is winning you are missing the point of the game!

The whole point is to get half a dozen people around the table, instantly doing something silly and all shouting over each other to try and guess what the answer is. This isn't a game for your introverted thinkers (though maybe the drawing part is), but instead it's a game for the slightly loud, perhaps slightly intoxicated crowd who will be laughing at the game as as soon as they hear its questionable choice of name!


Fi’s Final Thoughts

As you can tell, there's not a lot to describe about Nobjects - it's an extremely simple concept for a twist on the classic Pictionary. For me it's no better or worse than it's predecessors. Tracing on the table is a gimmick and it works with well thought out words in the deck, with a generally appropriate difficulty. Because of this gimmick, it's a game that you can easily get your friends to try, whereas I'd never manage to persuade people to play a game of a classic like Pictionary.


We've played Nobjects, with a couple of groups. The first group was a bunch of guys at a board game convention, who were really up for a silly game. The name helped break the ice and even after a few groans when we explained the simplicity of the game, the group ultimately had a great time playing. However, you do need an outgoing group with some energy. The second group we played with weren't the type of people to just start shouting stupid guesses - they wanted to wait and figure out the right answer before speaking up and that just didn't work!

Like many of this style of games, I imagine most people will play as an activity, rather than as a game of first to 6 points. However, the deck of difficulty cards does try to work as a catch up mechanism. We rarely found that someone failed to get a word guessed though, so even for the player with 1 point left to win, the hard card wasn't hard enough that players couldn't guess the answer and make that player win.  It's a frustrating ending, but probably not one that will matter to most.

Nobjects is a silly, low priced bit of fun and so if you want a new game for kids or for a party then Nobjects might be something a little different and break the ice at a social occasion.


You Might Like...
  • It might initially seem like there's nothing to the game, but the level of difficulty of each deck of words is why you'd want to purchase it over using words from another similar game.
  • For those self-conscious of the inability to draw, the game leaves no evidence.
  • Like many drawing and guessing games, there is no shortage of hilarity with the right group.
You Might Not Like...
  • The name of this game is somewhat unfortunate - although you might easily get 12-year old boys (or in our experience 30 year old men) to play based on the name alone!
  • It's more of an activity than a game, you'll easily find flaws, especially at the end-game if your looking for a game experience.

The Verdict
6/10 Nobjects is certainly a fun time, but it's not really offering anything new over traditional games like Pictionary. Not needing paper is a gimmick that works though and our friends have definitely enjoyed it. However, if you're looking for a drawing party game, then for us, you still can't beat Telestrations.


Nobjects was a review copy kindly provided to us by Pegasus Spiele.

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