Quelf Review
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Players: 3-8 (ages 12+)
Playing Time: anywhere from about 45 minutes on up


When I first opened up my Quelf box and took a look inside, I knew it would be the perfect game to pull out when my parents next came for a visit. If you’ve read about my two favorite board game guinea pigs in previous reviews, you know that Mom and Dad tend to be pretty good sports. They also tend to be up for anything—which is important when it comes to playing Quelf.

At first glance, Quelf looks like a pretty plain and simple board game, with playing pieces that travel around the colorful spaces around the board. The object is to be the first player to make it to the final space—and to complete the final task. On your way around the board, though, you have to perform some pretty random tasks—and here’s where being up for anything comes into play.

  
 
For instance, after rolling the die, you could land your Super Ninja Monkey pawn on a yellow space—and the yellow card you draw may instruct you to sniff inside your mother’s sock (or else pay the penalty and go back two spaces). Or you could land your Mr. Lugnut pawn on a purple space, and the purple card could tell you to perform the National Anthem using your nose as a trumpet. You could have to drink backwards out of a glass or recite poetry on bended knee. You never know what could happen when you draw one of the color-coded cards.

Quelf is an absolutely ridiculous game that’s guaranteed to make you laugh pretty much non-stop (unless, of course, you draw a blue Roolz card that forbids you to do so—and if that’s the case, I wish you the best of luck). At one point, as we were going around the table, listing off the meals we wouldn’t serve a vegetarian (Dad had suggested bear), I laughed until I nearly threw up. So Quelf isn’t for the weak or the humorless. (According to the warning on the box, it’s also not advised for pregnant women.) But if you’ve got a pretty solid sense of humor (not to mention a sense of adventure)—and if you’re surrounded by people around whom you’re pretty comfortable making a complete fool of yourself—then you’re sure to find this totally random board game to be anything-but-serious fun.

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