Meow, meow meow-meow, meow, meow! Okay, I guess writing the introduction in cat probably isn’t the best idea, so back to English it is! If you are a cat fan who also happens to be in need of a nice light games to play with your friends and kids, then you would definitely benefit from checking out Affectionate: Cats and Cuddles. Short, simple, and sweet, it covers all the bases that lots of gamers will enjoy whether you’re typically a light-game player, or just looking for another good filler. Let’s take a look!
What Is It?
A simple dice rolling and pattern matching game that’s fun for the family! It’s quick, light, and good fun for cat-loving gamers. It’s definitely one of those “beer and pretzel” type games, meaning it’s simple enough that you can carry on other conversations and have some laughs while playing without worrying about missing a turn or planning out a huge strategy.
Who Is It For?
Great for all ages! The base game is ideal for younger audiences; I’d say ages 4+ could have a wonderful time with this (basically anyone who can read). The advanced game is good for older players and more seasoned gamers since it adds a drafting element. And the Treat Time expansion, which adds in a worker placement mechanic, would also be enjoyed by older or more experienced gamers. I would recommend the latter 2 elements to ages 12 and up.
Quality of Components
Some of the components in my copy do not represent the quality of final production, so just keep that in mind! I will say that I really like the wooden pieces for the cat tokens, cuddle tokens, and silly tokens (although the silly tokens didn’t look like mice to me at first, but that could just have been my eyes playing tricks). They’re super nice quality, super solid, and I enjoyed using them. The dice are also very nice. Everything is printed on them clearly and nicely. The player mats for the advanced game and expansion are simple print outs, nothing special, and the 3D printed player pawns for the expansion are okay as well, my biggest complaint with those is that some simply don’t look like cats to me but I assumed they should have.
- Super easy to learn, teach, and play!
- The rule book is not only explained clearly but also has great detailed images to help with set up and reference!
- Reference sheets are also clear and very handy
- The wooden pieces are a big pro for me, like I said, I really like them
- Great for families/kids
- Great starter game to try with non-gamers; would be especially great for cat-lovers!
- Thematically sound – everything comes back to cuddles! It makes sense and works well
- Advanced rules definitely make things more interesting; gives you actual decisions to make and adds multiple layers between drafting and other players getting a leg up if you draft their dice
- The base game is a little bit too easy for seasoned gamers (so it’s a con for me, but could be a pro for families with kids they need more games for!)
- Base game can also get repetitive – you roll and take the action you got and that’s it
- Not super competitive at 2-players; doesn’t ever seem too necessary to use silly tokens on each other in my opinion, but that could change depending on what’s rolled.
- The drafting component of the expansion seems almost unnecessary. Since you’re choosing actions in turn order anyway with the worker placement mechanic, it feels like you don’t need to draft also, you can just choose an action based on what’s originally rolled. But I can see both sides of this one.
I would definitely give the base game a 1/5 difficulty. I think even small kids could handle it since you just have to roll and match your roll to the reference sheet to see what action you get to take. The advanced is still pretty easy, but does add an element of strategy so I’ll give it a 2.5/5 for difficulty. Finally, the expansion adds a similar level of strategy, but also a bit more since there’s a little more opportunity to block players when placing your cat token. So for this, it gets a 3/5for difficulty. Overall a very easy game which is great for a quick filler or light game on a lunch break.
Overall, the game is a little bit too light for me and my group, but I did really like it, and would recommend it to players who typically opt for lighter games, or are looking for a good filler. I would have to say that the base game is really best for a younger audience and anyone familiar with gaming should skip right to the advanced rules because that’s where the game shines most. Then, the expansion helps to add yet another great level for you once you’ve taught your group the advanced. I think this one will be a hit with feline lovers everywhere!
Designer – Trevor Harron
Artwork – Nayaki Anadan
Publisher – Blue Heron
*I was provided a prototype copy of this game to do this preview*
*All components shown are subject to change*
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