Big-Time Card Game Battles in – Smash Up

Smash Up

Let the battles begin!

Smash Up is the latest card game from AEG that does what the name suggests – Smashes things Up. Not only do players battle to smash up bases to score points, but they do so by having a ‘smashed up’ deck of faction cards to do it with.

Just looking at the Smash Up box you can see that it’s a total mish-mash of game play – combining Aliens, Dinosaurs, Ninjas, Pirates, Wizards, Robots, Tricksters, and Zombies into a single game. Every faction has it’s unique and powerful abilities to wreak havoc with. And if that weren’t enough, each player takes two factions and shuffles them together into a single deck. Figuring out how to harness the combined powers of your two factions is what Smash Up is all about.

Check out Jaden’s review of this crazy new card game – Smash Up.

Can the whole family enjoy Smash Up?

Smash Up card game

Would you like some Aliens?

Smash Up isn’t a game for everyone. The recommended age on the box is 12+ and we think that’s pretty accurate. Not only is there a lot of text on every card, but the whole nature of the game is one of calculating and maneuvering your cards and abilities in the right manner to gain the most points.

As Jaden shows in his card game video review, once the Minions start landing on bases and special Actions are played to move Minions around and change things up, there’s a lot going on to keep track of. And players typically have a number of choices to consider. So for a theme that sounds pretty wacky and fun, there’s a lot of thinking involved.

Lots of Replay Value

Smash Up card game

The powerful Dinosaurs!

One of the things that makes Smash Up so appealing is the amount of possibilities in the game play. Since there are eight factions and each player mixes two factions together, there’s a lot to be explored in how the cards from the various factions work together. It could be different every time you play.

For example, Aliens are great at abducting other players’ minions and removing them from bases. Ninjas are great at sneaking their minions onto a base just as it’s being scored. Dinosaurs have a lot of power. Pirates can move amongst the bases easily. And those pesky Zombies just won’t go away.

Smash Up card game

Looks pretty empty when first opened.

It’s enough to keep us wanting to play some more – a great feature in any kind of card game or board game.

(And the artwork on the cards is fantastic too – great stuff!)

More Smashing to Come
From the moment we opened the game box, we could easily see that AEG plans to publish a lot more faction card decks as game expansions to add to Smash Up. Take a look at the photo showing what comes in the box to see for yourself. In fact as soon as I lifted the box I wondered why it felt so light. Lifting the lid dispelled the mystery.

Smash Up card game

Plenty of room for more factions…

But don’t let that initial impression worry you because as we said – even with just the starting 8 factions, there’s plenty of replay value. Just be warned that AEG is really good at making expansions and if you love Smash Up, you’ll be looking ahead to picking up an expansion down the road. (Case in point – Thunderstone.)

Be ready for slow play
The only caveat with Smash Up that we offer is one we eluded to earlier – that there’s a lot of reading and calculating involved. Most games take longer to play the first time you play them. It’s just the nature of learning the rules of the game. However, with Smash Up, the rules of the game are very simple and easy to remember. The issue is in needing to read every card that comes up to figure out how it can affect the game.

Smash Up card game

Even the bases each have special characteristics.

Not only will you find yourself rereading your cards frequently to figure out their abilities, you’ll also be reading all the other cards that get played to the table and trying to keep their abilities in mind so you can calculate what you’re up against. And chances are that just before your turn, another player will play some cards that will mix up the cards on the table and send you back to recalculating and readjusting what you’ll play.

It’s a card game with a lot of reaction, so just be ready for it and take it all in stride. Don’t take it too seriously or overthink it too much or you’ll be at the table for a much longer time than you expect. Just have fun.

How does Smash Up score on the ”Let’s Play Again” game meter?
Smash Up card gameIf you can’t already tell from the review, Smash Up scores high on our “Let’s play again” game meter. In addition to wanting to explore all the different combo abilities between factions, playing more frequently also speeds up the game play as players become more familiar with the cards.

Thanks AEG for another fun card game!

And an expansion is already out – Smash Up Awesome Level 9000! Check out our review of the Smash Up expansion.

The Board Game Family Game Ratings
Caleb: 4.0 Meeples Caleb
   Has not played Brooke
Jaden: 4.0 Meeples Jaden
Trevor: 3.5 Meeples Trevor
   Has not played Mom
Dad: 3.5 Meeples Dad
AVerage: 3.75 Meeples Average
Pick up a copy!

Buy Smash Up from Amazon

Interested in what others think of Smash Up?
Check out these other opinions:
* Board Game Reviews by Josh Smash Up review
* Games With Two review of Smash Up
* iSlaytheDragon Smash Up
* Play Board Games also reviewed Smash Up

 

Comments: 3

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[...] another opinion? Check out The Board Game Family’s Smash Up review and the Smash Up review on Games with [...]

 

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I must say I really appreciate your help when it comes to these reviews. Between your family and Boardgamegeek.com with Tom Vassel, Board games with Scott, Undead Viking, Starlight Citidal and Drakkenstein I get the coverage that I need. My own family semi mirrors yours with tastes and I appreciate that. Again thanks for the reviews. The last 3 board games I have purchased were due to your video reviews. I ended up getting King of Tokyo, Yinsh, Quarto. Out of which Yinsh surprisingly is probably the most popular we love to play it like sequence as a silent 2v2 game. For an all out Brawl King of Tokyo is a BLAST! Quart makes a nice light hearted filler type of game. Again thanks for your reviews it looks like I’ll be checking out Smash up along with Cosmic Encounters for this Holiday Season.
P.S. I have a lot of respect for you to post your beliefs link that’s pretty gutsy and flippen awesome!

 

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    Clinton – thanks for the comment and kudos. We’re happy to hear that our reviews are helpful in you finding games you enjoy playing. And our beliefs are so ingrained in how we approach and enjoy life, it’s hard not to share – so we do. Thanks again.

     

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