Our Snake Oil review, what we have to say about the submit and judge party game. If you are familiar with a Snake Oil Salesman, you know that it is a shifty character that is overselling you on something you probably do not need. This job does a good job of taking that concept and turning it into a fun creativity exercise. The game is fun and sets out what it tries to do.
We took a look across fun, replayability, player interaction, quality and art & style to come up with the overall score for our Snake Oil review. See the breakdown by category below.
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– CATEGORY BREAKDOWN –
Fun (6 out of 10)
For the fun section of the Snake Oil review, we award a good 6 out of 10. This is a submit and judge game like you have seen in the past (think Apples to Apples, Cards Against Humanity and even Dixit) but with its own hook that is interesting and worthwhile. You have a bunch of cards in your hand and when the active player throws out a role like “pirate”, every other player needs to put together two of those cards to pitch the invention they would need.
The creativity that flows from this at at a very high level. If you are a fan of Shark Tank the entrepreneurial TV show, this feels like the introductory version built for families. The picking and points and winning is not what is fun here, it is all the wild thoughts that everyone is going to have.
Replayability (6 out of 10)
For the replayability section of the Snake Oil review, we award a nice 6 out of 10. There is not much too this game. You have one thing to do and you just need to do it in a different creative way every singe time. Regardless of the situation, you are still pitching ideas and at a certain point your creative juice is going run out.
What is nice, there is so much freedom that the bounds of replayability are limited to your imagination and the other players you are playing with. There are no rules, you are just trying to be funny or smart or both. As long as those things can change and evolve, so can this.
Player Interaction (7 out of 10)
For the player interaction section of the Snake Oil review, we award a very good 7 out of 10. This is a party game so player interaction is everything. The game does it well, not only is it straight up a competition of who can do the task at hand best, but the judges themselves are always your peers.
One interesting thing that plays out as a negative is that this is pretty much the only submit and judge game where the submissions are not blind. You know exactly who is submitting what because they have to pitch you. It is impossible to not bring in feelings or biases into your decision.
Quality (6 out of 10)
For the quality section of the Snake Oil review, we award a solid 6 out of 10. The game is fine and interesting but it is nothing that is going to set the world on fire. It is a new take on something you have played before. It is hard to give it innovation points, but it does know exactly what it is trying to do and it gets there, so it successful overall.
Components and box are fine. The overall size could be smaller given that you are only really working with cards, but they set it up to make room for the future expansions, which are going to be necessary given how easily you can run out of content to play with.
Art & Style (6 out of 10)
For the art & style section of the Snake Oil review, we award a good 6 out of 10. The term “Snake Oil” kind of has this dirty aduly scam vibe too it, but they did a great job of making a fun, light cartoonish package that capitalizes on the meaning (a salesman overselling you on something) and properly targets a family audience.
The snake is really fun, it could easily be the lead on its own cartoon. There was not too much to do but they did what they needed to just fine. They could have chosen different typography choices in different areas to be class up the production, but everything was above average across the board.
– IN CLOSING –
Snake Oil Review | Board Game Halv
Snake Oil is a fun party game built for families. It is a submit and judge board game that doesn't reinvent the wheel but it has its own interesting hook and it delivers on it well. An active player flips a role and all other players have to mash up two cards to form a wacky invention to pitch them. This game is an explosion of asking its participants to be creative. Only one can be chosen so it is a race to who can do it best. This has been our Snake Oil review, we hope you enjoyed it!
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See the full explanation of the judging criteria here.