What Came First

Summary

Game: What Came First? Big Potato Games (BGG)Time: 15- 20 minutes
Difficulty: EasyPlayers: 2- 8
Age: 10+Replay Value: medium

Big Potato Games are what I’d argue, the leading team in party games. Ever heard of, scrawl, Blockbuster, The Chameleon, or Bucket of Doom? Right, so now, What Came First! This is a party game that has a super classic feel to it. The game has players moving around a board based off their answers toward what came first. The bikini? or the Surfboard? Bass Pro Shops? or Dick’s Sporting Goods? Pick up your vibrantly neon betting chips and turn on your memory bank.

Experience

I honestly thought I had better memory of what came first then I was able to demonstrate. Each card through me off with the one being far more obvious being the incorrect answer. I noticed that would happen often with me, and the group I played with. Both choices are very similar in date but one felt wrong. The wrong one was usually right. But, funny thing was–it was some sort of unspoken reverse psychology. It was not until half way through the game did we all realize “wait, I can’t tell which one is the obvious answer anymore”.

The games do feel short when players make lucky answers. Every turn a player could move up to 3 times a turn with an additional 5 on top of that for correctly guessing the exact date of the winner options. With the amount of times we have played it, we haven’t seen that happen. A lot of the time we guess incorrectly and have to move backwards more often than not.

How To Play

Players will place their player piece on the board and collect the 3 betting tokens that go with their piece color. Players will look over the top “what came first?” card and then everyone in order will spend 1, 2, or 3 tokens on the side they believe is the winner. You can bet a coin on the circular spot on the chosen side; this gives you a chance to guess the exact date of it’s release. Once done, flip over the card and reveal the winning side. Players who guessed right move 1, 2, or 3 spots forward (depending on bet), and those who were wrong move back as many spots as they bet. Guessing the right date gives you an additional 5 points forward. Getting the year wrong, doesn’t penalize you 5 moves–you just waste the chip you played on the spot. First person to make it to the finish wins.

Evaluation

User Interface and Gameplay

As long as players have some sort of knowledge pertaining to everyday culture, you should be able to get an idea of how to win the game. Guess correctly based on the two options available. Lego or Ikea? If you guessed Lego you are correct. Move forward the amount of spaces you placed your bet for. This game is solely a guessing game really. Time tokens are a great way to add a little nudge of difference to each game. They are also very risky as they can punish you or help you get ahead.

Game Break Down

Each card will have two sides to the card. Both being topics, companies, things that have come out around the same time. The back side establishes a little more information on the two things as well as the dates they were originated from. The board is a small black square with movement squares around the board, and betting spaces between the movement and around the cards. Games include time tokens, which are little boosts or lags that stay on the board until collected by a team.

What I Liked

It is a very simple party game that gets a solid bit of fun out of players. It’s short and sweet so it does not over stay its welcome and the game play is so ridiculously easy, this can be a filler, or one of those super-late-and-probably-last-game games. I was caught by surprise with a lot of these cards and especially the reveals. I had no idea that some of these things I was thought were far more recently created out-age some of these knowingly ancient things. The game suggests to play in teams, but even with 4 players all uniquely playing as their own team–it was a blast jumping ahead of each other. I liked that the game brought some risky attempts for us. Some players would bet all their tokens on a super unknown gamble–either winning or losing. Random date guesses (the date it’s released) are some of the most hyped moments in game.

What I Don’t Like

Unfortunately, I can see this game totally lose it’s replay value once cards are memorized. It is one thing for party games to use the same cards and eventually run thin. It’s another for a 2 thing comparison. I feel like these two things are so random that it will be memorable for us. New players will lose their chance and competing with us seasoned veterans.

Final Thoughts

Advice

Don’t be afraid to gamble your movement. Playing safe can truly throw you behind. But that’s totally dependable on the group playing. Also, not every time token is good and I cannot emphasize that enough. I played a game where a time token had first and last place players swap. I was happily the winner that round.

Outcome

I like the game. While I know this game will lose it’s replay value after multiple play throughs. I think we can eventually turn our game play into a race, you know, focus on origination dates to speed ahead of the competition. I love this game for families because of it’s simplicity and safe for work content. The gameplay is reflective of a classic A to B movement scheme. Monopoly only players can enjoy this… Anyone can enjoy this..

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