Ooga Booga (Family Fiends) Review
Blue Orange Games brings a unique playing experience to the table (literally) with Ooga Booga. A fun caveman inspired party game, Ooga Booga is an experience you are not likely to forget. It’s a memory based game that pulls inspiration from our Neanderthal pasts in an interesting and hilarious way.
The basic idea in Ooga Booga is to correctly remember a series of nonsense words. Each player is dealt a number of cards (either six or eight, depending on how many people are playing), which are kept facedown on a pile in front of you. The game begins when the first player (as determined by a wooly mammoth impression contest) lays the top card on their stack in the center of the table. Each of the cards contains either a nonsense word like “ooga” or “toka” or an action, each with a graphic below. The first player calls out (or acts out) the item depicted on the card, and points at the next player and yells “ha!”.
The next player then continues the game by laying their card on top of the first card, covering the word. That player then needs to say both cards in sequence, pointing and yelling “ha!” to the next player in line. While it is pretty easy (and ridiculously silly) with just a few cards, the difficulty level really amps up when you get eight or nine cards laying down, and the fact that they aren’t real words makes them even harder to remember – not to mention the fact that all the giggling inspired by your shouting “Moki-Aka-Ani-Yonka-Kiki-Ha!” is a wee bit distracting.
Of course, mistakes will be made, and there is a process for that as well. If another player believes a mistake has been made, they must bang their fists on the table whilst calling out, “Pabo! Pabo! Pabo!”, which I believe is caveman speak for “HAHAHAHA! You suck!” The sequence of cards is then checked for accuracy. If the player has indeed made a mistake, they must take three cards from the sequence and add them to their hand. The other cards get discarded, and a new sequence is begun. If “Pabo!” was yelled erroneously, then the Pabo-er must take three cards. This is significant because the only way to win the game is by getting rid of all your cards, reciting the entire sequence correctly, and then yelling “Ooga Booga!” (translation: In yo’ face!”).
Ooga Booga comes in a cute little tin that is perfect for gaming on the go, and it doesn’t take up too much space on the kitchen counter either, if you want something handy for a quick game. And it is a quick game, with most matches coming in around ten minutes or so. Even the busiest of parents have time to sneak in a game here and there, and kids absolutely adore the sheer silliness of it. My kids could not get enough of it, and it’s a simple enough concept for even younger kids to grasp. If they can read, they can play it, but it’s fun and challenging for older kids and parents as well. Heck, I can envision drunk college kids having a ball with it. A game that appeals to pretty much every age is a rare gem; an affordable game that you can play together as a family even when life gets hectic is well worth taking time for.