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So, you think you know it all, you're a real smartypants, eh? Then prove it... play Smarty Party -- the game that keeps everybody guessing! Name a popular TV series of the 70's... name a handyman's tool... name a stinky cheese. Each category has several correct answers. Can you name them all?
Each round, one player selects a random category card. The other players try to come up with all the answers on the card. If your answer is wrong, you have to take a penalty, but if you're correct, you get to wear the smartypants. Woohoo!
It's all about coming in last. The last player gets the pants. The last player still wearing the pants gets the bonus points. And last place wins!
Smarty Party -- the hip party game where it's cool to be the last to know.
- 1 game board
- 1 smartypants
- 1 smartycard reader
- 100 Smarty Pants cards
- 7 penalty chips
- 1 sand timer
- 16 pawns
- 1 wager marker
Average Rating: 4.2 in 4 reviews
The questions range from all-knowing to totally random and specific (sometimes on one card) which makes the old and young feel equally as intelligent. Smarty Party! also features a great scoring mechanism that always give the person in last place a chance to catch up, making the race for the winners more heated and exciting.
My favorite part of the game was having to be poker-faced when the question was read as to not give away whether the group could answer all the questions or not. The question reader of each round has to make a wager as to how many questions the group can answer. At one point, the reader had no idea how educated I was in knowing all of the 'Neighborhood of Make-believe' characters on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. This was followed up by my not knowing a thing about pro basketball.
Fair for everyone and fun for everyone.
This fantastic trivia game uses lists of things within one or more categories. One person each round is a reader who reveals the category and checks off items as guessers answer them correctly. You might get a card that asks for the eight baseball players with the most home runs. Some cards have two or more categories like the seven deadly sins and the five US companies with largest advertising budgets. In that case, a guesser can answer either category.
In this game, you win by moving the slowest toward the finish line. If you are the first person to incorrectly guess an item, you take the number three token. The next person to get a wrong answer gets a number two token, and the penalties for further wrong answers are less severe. The round ends when either all of the penalty tokens have been taken, or all of the items on the card have been correctly answered. The guessers move forward a number equal to the total of their chips. But theres a way to save yourself. In the guessing phase, the last person to correctly name an item on the card gets the little blue pants. If you have the pants at the end of the round, youre allowed to get rid of your highest token! If you didnt take any tokens that round, you can move back one space. So if you know more than one answer on the list, theres a good amount of strategy in choosing which one to save until the end.
Even when its your turn to be the reader, you can improve or weaken your position. On each card there is a pants number which is an indicator of difficulty. In a list of twelve items, the pants number might be nine. The reader must bet on whether the guessers will collectively answer than many items. If the reader had little confidence in the guessers he/she would bet no. If the guessers collectively answered nine or more correct items, then the reader would have lost the bet and would be forced to move forward one space. If the reader bet correctly, he/she would move back one space.
Theres one more way to change your position. On some of the lists there is one item that is particularly difficult to guess, and it is marked as such. If a reader guesses that item, that player immediately moves back one space! That adds another layer of strategy since you might want to name a more obscure item earlier.
This is the best trivia game that I have ever played, and Ive played a few. The lists are creative and diverse, and there are many opportunities for strategic play. Its loads of fun, and I believe it will quickly become a classic.
I first played this game in August and really enjoyed it. When I saw it on the vendor table at Great Lakes Games this past weekend I immediately picked up a copy. Every time I got it out (I believe I played it four times over the weekend) we had people approach our table to see if they could get into the game. We really had a blast with it. The game can be taught just a few minutes. I've played the game with 20 different people and they have all enjoyed it.
Party games hold a special place in my game collection. Very few of them I consider my favorite games, but there is a time and place for them. Whenever Im with a large group of people who havent played board games much, these are the games that I bring out. And they are, by far, my most requested games. The thing that stands out to me, though, is that some of the most memorable events in my gaming history have happened during party games and some of the hardest Ive laughed in my life has been at party games. Not all party games are gems, however, and some are just plain boring. However, the reviews I read on Smarty Party (R & R Games, 2003 Aaron Weissblum and Pitt Crandlemire) indicated that it was one of the best of 2003, so I was glad to pick up a copy and give it a whirl.
My feelings are mixed on the game. I really like how the game worked, and the mechanics and ideas were certainly interesting. However, it was not a rip-roaring fun fest, like other party games (Spinergy, Times Up, Balderdash). It was certainly the best trivia-type game Ive played, and I did enjoy it. It did seem that the categories were either too hard or too easy or geared towards only one person. A fun game, but Im not sure its an ultimate winner.
A board is placed in the middle of the table, with a Start and a Game Over space, with twenty spaces in between. A pile of penalty chips (four 1 chips, two 2 chips, and one 3 chip) is placed near the board, as well as a small rubber pair of pants the Smarty Pants. Each player takes two pawns, putting one in front of themselves so that stupid people can remember who is what color and the other on the start space. The youngest player is the first Reader, and the first round begins.
The Reader takes one list card (from a box of 100) and places it in a special card holder that allows the card to be read. The Reader reads the name of the list, the amount of items in the list, and the wager number. The Reader then decides how he will wager by placing a chip down on its Yes side or No side. Basically, he is guessing if the players will guess at least as many items from the list as the wager number. The Reader picks one player to be the first guesser, and each other player follows in clockwise order.
The guesser must guess an item on the card. If they do, the Reader checks off the item, the guesser receives the Smarty Pants, and play passes to the next guesser. If, when the item is checked, a little smiley face appears, the lucky guesser gets to move back one space. If the guesser is wrong, they must take the highest valued penalty chip currently available, and then play passes to the next person. When either the last item has been guessed, OR the last penalty chip has been taken, the round ends. Each player moves their token an amount of spaces equal to the sum of their penalty chip values. The player who currently holds the Pants, however, can subtract one chip value. (If he has no chip, he may move his pawn one space backward). The Reader can move his pawn a space backward if he was correct concerning the Wager. The player who is farthest ahead on the track becomes the next Reader.
Whenever anybodys pawn reaches the Game Over, the game (shockingly) is over. The player whose pawn is the closest to Start is declared the winner. (Ties are broken by sudden death.)
Some comments on the game
1.) Components: The board is nice, but as in the case of most party games, entirely superfluous. I have no idea why the game includes two pawns for everybody, but it seems to be in fashion nowadays. Frankly, it annoys me, as people sit there and play with the pawn the entire game. The cards are of good quality, and the little card reader is rather ingenious in its size. The penalty and wager chips are of high quality, which is good, as they get handled quite a bit. The little blue rubber pants are nice, but are mainly window dressing. Everything fits into a fantastic plastic insert in a sturdy, colorful box. (Theres even a spot in the insert that exactly fits the pants!)
2.) Rules: As with most party games, the rules are easily explained and understood in about 1 minute. The rule booklet (4 pages) itself is formatted well.
3.) Replayability: Im a little concerned about how often one can play the game. There are only 200 lists, and about 10-13 of them are used a game. Now, that will give you 15 plays or so, but then the game cant be played again with the same folk (unlike Times Up or Apples to Apples). Im sure R & R, if the game is popular, will release expansions (they mention this in the rules), but I thought that the basic game could have had a bit more.
4.) Lists: I like some of the lists a lot, and others I thought were retarded. The problem with the lists were how hit-or-miss they were. Sometimes everyone would know ALL the answers, sometimes nobody would know ANY of the answers, and sometimes everyone but one person knew all the answers. If four lists are pulled in a row that you have no idea about, the game could seem a bit unfun. To be fair, however, most of the lists did seem to have common things. But then, of course, there could be LONG and LOUD arguments about what answers the company put on the cards and the answers that should have been there, etc.
5.) Time and Players: Up to eight players can play the game, and the game play doesnt change that much which is a good thing. Also, unless everyone is a genius, the game will end fairly quickly, like in a half hour or so. The timer that is included (15 seconds) for optional use is mandatory in my group, and really helps keep the games from dragging on too long. For a party game, thats very acceptable and helps make the game more popular, Im sure.
6.) Fun Factor: The game is fun, and everyone enjoyed it me least of all, but I still liked it. However, there wasnt a lot of laughing and talking, and there just wasnt the sense of fun that I enjoy so much in party games. The game had a nice feel to it, but at the same time when one person gets ALL the penalty chips, its just not that fun. However, I will say that I think that the person who is effectively in last place being the next Reader is a marvelous idea, and this concept should be implemented in more games.
Is it fun yes. Is it a game that I think you should run out and buy right now no. If you like Trivia games, like Outburst or Trivial Pursuit, then I think this is a fantastic game of that genre, probably the best. However, the lack of excitement and raucous chuckles tend to make me not pull it out that often. Now, I will say that some in my gaming group have the opposite opinion and were eager to play the game again, so there are some that really like it. It just wasnt my cup of tea. Ill play it again, but probably wont request it.
Seven Penalty Chips, valued from 1 to 3, await dunces at each round's start. The Reader picks a random card and announces the Topic ("Top five U.S. newspapers by circulation, and seven popular types of martial arts"). Will contestants guess at least as many answers as the card's Wager Number? The Reader now secretly bets for or against this.
Players answer in turn. Incorrect answers get you the highest available Chip. Crab the Smarty Pants (small plastic trousers) for answering correctly. Rounds end after all answers have been guessed, or all Chips acquired. Whoever ends with the Smarty Pants discards his highest Chip. Move forward on the track your Chips' total value. The Reader moves one space back for a correct wager, or forward for an incorrect one. Whoever is farthest along the track reads next. Win by being farthest from the Finish when someone else reaches it. Buying this game is a smart idea!