WBG Score: 8
Player Count: 4-16
You’ll like this if you like: Charades, most party games!
Published by: CMYK
This is a review copy. See our review policy here
What more is there to say about Monikers? It's one of the best selling and popular party games ever made. Like many games of this ilk, it's the polished and published version of something many if you may have played at home already, simply with paper and pen. You probably had a great time with it, and for me, the question may be less about if this game is any good, and more, do you need to pay for it? Well, to answer that, let's get this new standalone expansion to the table, and see for our selves.
How To Set-Up Monikers: Monikers-er
As you might expect in a party game this is very easy to set up. Simply split into two teams, grabs some cards and begin! Now, the official rules has a set number of cards based on player count, but obviously this is up to you based on how long you want to play for. But you can give each player this amount of cards, they will then choose four to eight from this, depending on player count, and these are then shuffled into the one deck used in the game. If you want to make the game suitable for younger players simply remove the cards with the pumpkin symbols shown on them.
How To Play Monikers: Monikers-er
Now, taking it in turns, teams will have one player from their team try and describe as many cards as possible to their team in one minute from the chosen deck of cards. Players are trying to guess what is written on the card, and the describer can say anything they like to make them guess correctly, other than the words on the card. It's up to your group how strict you police the clues and the answers that are given, the rule book suggests you err on the side of fun! Teams will take it in turns to play like this, one minute rounds, until the deck is extinguished. There are no limits to how many passes you can make, the game suggests you don't worry about that too much, and just try and keep the game moving. Keep the game fun! Teams will score points based on the cards they managed to complete and the score shown on the bottom of each card. Harder cards reward with bigger points.
Then, the fun really begins! In round two, the teams will continue to do the same thing, but now they can only use one word! It sounds a lot harder than it is, but of course the cards you are using are the same from round one, so you already know all the answers. But can you remember them? Don't worry if not. Just shout out random answers from round one until you stumble onto the correct one! There is no limit to how many answers you can try.
In the final round, players now have to use the power of charades to direct the teams into the right direction. It is hilarious, often terrible, sometimes genius, but always fun! It is always enjoyable to see the call backs from the things players said about the cards from the previous rounds. It always amazes me how certain things now associate with almost unrelated words, simply from the links made in the previous rounds.
There are a few expansions out there with some ideas for a crazy fourth round. When we used to play this with paper and pen we then did a fourth round with sounds only, or "just the eyes!" Which trust me, can work! It's up to you how far you want to take it!
Is It Fun? Monikers: Monikers-er Board Game Review
If you are unsure if this is fun, perhaps this won't be for you. But, if by now you are itching to play this with your family or friends, I would suggest you do not hesitate and just get it. Sure, you could play on your own with paper and pen, but the game is not expensive and the production is very good. Having a published version like this full game takes away the need for players to have to write out the answers to start with, which can be tedious, and lead to some dreary people on occasions. Monikers also brings in very interesting cards, other than just celebrities, which was how I used to play it. Phrases, words, films, places, all sorts of wierd and wonderful things come up. And interestingly, at different point scoring options too. Each card also explains what the word is too, so if you are unsure, you can pass, or quickly read the description and that may help give inspiration for what you want to say or do. There is some value to having a full published version.
As such, I would encourage everyone to buy this. If you enjoy party games, and especially have fun with the loud shouty, belly-laugh ones, then this should be in your collection. Buy any version. They all offer a lot of the same. This expansion is the newest, and has 330 new cards in the deck. You can play alone, or add to other versions. Whatever you want. There are some cards that may not be suitable for younger players, but they are clearly marked and easily removed if you want a family friendly version. But they are not that raunchy or anything to be worried about.