Stab a Panda Board Game Review

Game: Stab a Panda
Publisher: Gozer Games
Game Designers: Jeremiah Lee and Brian Lewis
Board Game Types: Party Game, Would You Rather
Price: Launching soon on Kickstarter

Players: 3-8
Duration: 25 Minutes
Age: 18+ (Exercise extreme caution here. The website lists 13/18+, but we're sticking to keeping this away from anyone under 18).
Time to Learn: 5-10 minutes

Stab a Panda Board Game Review

 Cute, cuddly and offensively warped.

Cute, cuddly and offensively warped.

Did you love coming up with the most extreme "Would You Rather" questions to make your friends squirm when you were a kid? Are you the kind of person who plays Cards Against Humanity, but finds it a bit tame for your liking? If you answered "yes" to both of these questions, the game of your dreams has arrived. If not, you might as well stop reading now.

Game Description/Gameplay

Stab a Panda is a "Would You Rather" card game with a twist. Each player takes turns being the Panda and is confronted with several squirm-worthy scenarios such as "Surprise Someone With a Broken Leg," "Fake Your Own Death," or "Walk Barefoot Across Legos." The panda ranks them in order from the things they'd rather do from most to least.

All other players then do the same ranking, but instead of choosing their own preferences, they predict the Panda's ranking. Points are scored, the title of Panda rotates, points are totaled and the game ends. Pretty fast, light and simple.

The mechanics are solid, but it comes with a few caveats. The style of humor here is proudly tasteless and ranges from quirky, clever and absurd to downright offensive and awkward. Some of the cards will ask players to rank what they think of others at the table romantically (and that's putting it lightly) compared with embarrassing acts. You'll often be faced with the choice of either hitting on someone at the table or insulting them. That definitely calls for a combination of the right frame of mind, the right sense of humor and the right group of people.

That's not even taking into consideration the "red" cards that are aggressively 18+. This is an all-ages website, so we won't give examples, but let's just say that you'd better be ready to be VERY open with the table if you're going to play with these cards. Way too extreme for most.

Verdict

If you think Cards Against Humanity is too tame, Stab a Panda is the perfect tasteless game for you. Just be advised that even the "tame" cards in this game will be too extreme for most and you may want to consider removing cards that reference other people at the table unless you're very comfortable and open with your group.

Presuming this game gets funded, expansion packs will be necessary to keep it fresh and will allow for needed customization for different player tolerance levels. We'd definitely be in line for a PG-13 or even all-ages pack, as the solid mechanics would arguably be enhanced by toning it down a bit. We'd go so far as to recommend that the designers start with a PG-13 version at retail, then offer expansion packs that contain the more extreme cards. 

Pros

  • Extreme, tasteless humor if your'e into that sort of thing
  • Appealing art design
  • Solid mechanics add a fun twist on "Would You Rather" gameplay

Cons

  • Tone goes from cute to edgy to scatalogical to jaw-droppingly extreme on a dime
  • Will be far too much for most players
  • Like most humor-based card games, will need a steady supply of expansions to keep it fresh 

Gateway Game Score (what's this?) - 2/10 (Very specifically appropriate for your tasteless friends with extreme senses of humor. Find a different gateway game for all other players.)
Overall Game Score - 7/10

Review by The Happy Strategerist, who needs to wash his eyes out with soap.

What do you think? Is Stab a Panda too extreme for you, or an offensive good time?