Hey, That’s My Fish!

This is a very simple game for 2 to 4 players that looks like a game for kids. However, despite the cute little penguins it is a deep abstract strategy game! A game lasts only around 10-15 minutes and most often players ask for another round.

Hey, That's My Fish!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Players control 2-4 penguins each and try to catch as much fish as possible. The ice tiles, each featuring 1 to 3 fish, are randomly set up. After each move the tile that the penguin left is catched by the respective player. Thus, there will be less and less tiles and more and more wholes. Players can’t jump over wholes so it is crucial to avoid being locked-in too early because locked-in penguins are lost. So players need to weigh short-term gains like winning as much fish in the next turn with maximizing the area control to limit other players‘ options and increase one’s own long-term return.

Hey, That's My Fish!
Hey, That’s My Fish!

Interaction: 10 out of 10

The game is an abstract game. Is chess interactive? I think so. Of course there is no need for table talk although in a multiplayer game players may try to forge alliances. However, players influence each other very directly through their moves.  When I refer to interaction in games I always mean the interaction within the game and not necessarily a verbal interaction (table talk, negotiation). The dynamics with 3 or 4 players are very interesting because one really tries to predict the third player when assessing if one should block player 2.

In many games with more than 2 players it is not worthwhile to harm other players if it harms oneself. In this game harming other players is very often the best for oneself as well so the interaction hardly decreases with 3 or 4 players in comparison with 2 players.

Fun: 9 out of 10

The game has deep strategy despite being very simple. It can be taught within 1 minute. The components are nice, too. The game box is very small so one can easily bring it along for travels. It can be both a great filler game to be played in 10 minutes or a strategy battle if the players play it that way. The only slight disadvantage of this game is that the setup of tiles is a bit tedious.

Replayability: 9 out of 10

The setup is random so one has to adapt. Sure the game is still fairly the same every time. But the game is so deep and the strategy is not so obvious at all. Think of chess, same setup but with high replayability.

There are very few games in which I don’t find any little flaw. Hey, thats my fish! is perfect from a designer’s perspective (at least from mine). There is nothing that I could have done better designing this game. So much game in such a little box and game time! Kudos!

 

 

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