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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Cooperative Filler Game
I picked up this game after hearing about it running as a nominee for a 2013 Spiel des Jahres Award and perusing some other reviews, and it's quite an excellent game.
UPDATE 7/8: It's won the 2013 Spiel des Jahres Award.

~Component & Rule Overview~

First impressions of the game is that the box is a lot smaller than I thought it is. The...
Published 19 months ago by Andy R.

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Easy to sort of cheat with this game
I had high expectations for this game - it got great reviews, however, I would describe this game as "okay". My husband and I are avid game players and we were hunting for a good cooperative game (one where it doesn't allow for one person to just take over the whole game). We've played this with several different groups and each time we've had the same problem...
Published 16 days ago by Mr. Man


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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Cooperative Filler Game, June 16, 2013
By 
= Durability:2.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
I picked up this game after hearing about it running as a nominee for a 2013 Spiel des Jahres Award and perusing some other reviews, and it's quite an excellent game.
UPDATE 7/8: It's won the 2013 Spiel des Jahres Award.

~Component & Rule Overview~

First impressions of the game is that the box is a lot smaller than I thought it is. The components are a simple deck of 50 cards and some tokens. The cards are a slightly smaller in size than Dominion card game cards (european standard). The box is very easy to pocket and take along someplace.

Gameplay is simple but deep. You and your fellow "pyrotechnicians" are in charge of playing your fireworks cards from your hand in concert playing cards of five different fireworks colors in ascending order from 1 to 5 somewhat similar to playing and categorizing like the well-known card game Solitaire. The goal is to score a perfect score of 25 points (5 colors with 5 numbers)

The twist to this game is that the players know everyone's hands but their own hand and communication is limited by the number of blue timer tokens on the table and the ways they can describe a player's hand (e.g. "you have this one color/number here, here, and here").

Choices on your turn are few but significant. Give one piece of information to help a fellow person out and discard a timer token, discard a card (and hopefully not a rare number 5 card) to get a timer token back, or play a card on to the table hoping the card works with the other cards on the table or else lose a fuse token which would you take you closer to ending the game.

~Review~

I really like this game. Setup and break down is a breeze. Its games mechanics and choices are simple, but the choices made can have lasting consequences overall. It's one of those few cooperative games where it's difficult for one person to take command. Everyone must participate to play and contribute information. We as a group have cheered and sighed in despair over cards played or discarded. It's not a game that will take a whole night, and would be a nice filler in my book and would be a great game for those that are into light games. If you like cooperative games. Pick it up.

Highly recommended.

~

Also, a quick note on the components. The version from R&R games has some pretty weak card stock. I've bent and frayed the edges on the cards in less than 10 plays. Also, the color suits can be hard to discern amongst each other. I sleeved the cards and also learned to match symbols in addition to the colors. Not a major deterrent to the game but is important to note.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This game is the real deal, July 1, 2013
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
When I first heard about Hanabi, it didn't sound that exciting. A cooperative deduction game? The twist of not knowing the cards in your hand is novel and kind of cool, but the game still revolves around playing numbered cards in order.

Whatever I thought initially, hear me now: this game is fantastic.

Hanabi is a simple game that isn't easy. That is, the rules can be taught in two minutes or less with attentive players, but the game is very difficult to win. Player turns involve either playing a card, giving a clue (and discarding a clue token), or discarding a card (to get a clue token back). That's it.

What makes this game fantastic is the way players have to work together to manage information. Clues are scarce, so players have to make inferences--to risk--and trust that their teammates are playing well. And if you ever get bored, there are multiple variants and additional cards to increase the difficulty, ensuring you'll get a lot out of the package.

The game plays very well from two to five (you have less information but more control with two; the opposite at five), and it is small enough to fit into a pocket or small bag, meaning you can take it everywhere. (My copy stays in my backpack just in case.)

The experiences this game provides are a steal for the low price you'll pay. I don't think you'll regret getting this game.
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74 of 87 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful game, absurd price, August 3, 2013
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
This is not to take away from the SdJ award winner. It's a wonderful game, and like so many others when first learning about the game I thought, "Why is this even in the running? Why would this be fun?!" So I watched a game play through online and my attitude went to, "I need to buy this immediately!" I strongly encourage everyone to have this in their collection, because of its unique style.
But really, the price it's being sold for on here is absurd. I picked up a my copy for $7 from a different online store, and the box lists the MSRP is at $10.95. If I spend $30 on the game, I'd get it, enjoy it, but think that it was too expensive and lament not getting Dominion, Power Grid, Puerto Rico, 7 Wonders or any number of other games at that price point. So get it... just not here (until they bring the cost in line with its actual value).

-- EDIT 6/11/2014 --

So it's been a good year or so since I bought Hanabi. It continues to be wonderful, and my wife and I continue to have a wonderful time playing it with two, and enjoy introducing others to it. A few updates, though. 1) It's great to see that R&R have got the reprint everywhere so the cost is right where it should be. In fact, you should probably buy a few copies and save them as presents for people. 2) I thought seriously about bumping my review up to the 5-star mark, but one thing has been clear over the year - the color palate for the game is not the best. Unless you're playing in a really bright room, we've found the white and yellow cards, and to a lesser extent the blue and green cards, tend to blur into one another. We've taken to replacing the white cards with the extra rainbow deck to make our lives a bit easier. This is only a minor annoyance. But three or four times a game some one will need to ask "Can you tilt your cards back?" to distinguish between different colors. I understand the different firework art ostensibly should solve this issue, but when you hold your cards in the typical fan-fashion, it covers up this otherwise nice designs. 3) If (2) is more annoying to others, or if you have color-blind players in your group, I'd suggest getting one of those nice acrylic or wood card holders to make the game playable. Not an issue for us, but know a solution is out there! 4) We've probably got 100+ plays with our deck. The box is already a tight fit so we never sleeved the cards. The cards are starting to show a bit of wear on the edges, but are otherwise in good shape. If you are thinking about sleeving the cards, I'd say to skip it, and just keep one of the extra decks you bought from (1) as a backup. As of today, Hanabi's at $9.72. A pack of 50 FFG sleeves is at $5.81. You'll need two packs to sleeve Hanabi because it's 60 cards. Just buy two copies of the game if you're worried about durability, it's actually the cheaper option!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great family game, July 27, 2013
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
Wonderful game. Our sons are 13, 10, and 8. I bought this based on the few reviews here and glad I did. We've only played 3 times since opening last week but surprisingly after the first two times the kids were calling for this instead of Munchkin, Carcasonne, Forbidden Island, Castle Panic, Zombie Dice, Resistance (actually Avalon) etc... We don't play Monopoly, Sorry, or Life anymore after we discovered eurogames. I suspect this game will get chosen less in a couple weeks and get added to the regular rotation soon. Excellent addition to our collection.

I like cooperative games but the oldest prefers the destroy opponent games, but he was the one who called for this last night. It has a unique game mechanic that I really like...you turn your cards around so everybody can see your cards but you can't see your own. This adds to the dimension of the game in simple things like holding your cards up so others can see, and picking up cards while suppressing the surprisingly strong instinct to look at the card as you draw. I keep having to remind the little one not to look at their cards. It keeps the kids and adults on their toes as you have to think about the choices and opportunity costs of the three action options you have each turn...giving information vs playing a card, vs discarding. Another thing I really like is unlike the other two cooperative games, this isn't simply you win or you lose as a team, but you have a measure of how good you did by adding up your score and the instruction book has a range of how you did while shooting for the perfect score. Once we get there, we'll add in the rainbow cards (included) for added expansion.

I don't bother with age recommendations anymore as I find my 8 yr old can play nearly every game we have including Avalon which is considered strong social skill game, but its amazing how quickly he picked it up and knows a few tricks for that game. But theme is important and Munchkin is his favorite. Next up, Love Letters and Settlers of Catan.

If you already have a collection, get it now. If you are building a collection, I'd get this early, but not first. Munchkin (if you have kids), Carcassonne, this game, then Forbidden Island is a good starting set. And go watch Table Top series on youtube.com.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Cooperative Game, February 22, 2014
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
I've played this with teenage students, and with people in their sixties... and I really think it's a hit at every age group.

Quick Version: It's a cooperative game (3-5 players) where the goal is somewhere between group solitaire and that somewhat silly game where you put a card on your forehead and try to guess what it is).

Some basics:

1. There are 5 colors (6 if you play with the "wild" suit) of cards, each numbers 1-5. There are three 1s of each color, two 2s, 3s, and 4s, of each color, and one 5 of each color.

2. Depending on the number of players, you will each start with 3-4 cards, that you CANNOT see, but which all the other players CAN see.

3. Each turn, you have three different things you can do:

a) you can tell another player a piece of information. You can EITHER tell them about the color of their card (Ex: "these two cards are red") or you can tell them about a number (Ex: "this card is yellow"). This spends a "token" which you have a limited number of, and which you can only earn back in two ways.

b) you can play a card (assuming you know enough information to play, or are very brave, as there are penalties "firework"/"bomb" for playing a card that can't be played)

c) you can discard a card (again, assuming it's safe to throw) to gain back a token.

Commentary:

We're a family that plays a lot of gains. In terms of cooperative games, this is probably one of my favorites.

1. It's versatile: You can have house rules in terms of how strict you want to be (when you communicate information -- some groups want to be careful there's no "meta" information being passed via faces, side talk, etc, others are very free about communicating and helping).

2. It expands well: there are multiple ways to incorporate the "wilds" suit, and each make it... crazier...

3. It genuinely feels and plays differently each time, depending on the group of people etc. One of the problems I have with cooperative games sometimes, is that some people can get drowned out. Even in games like Pandemic, which I love, you could really play that with one "leader" and three "followers" depending on the personalities involved. Though there are sometimes bossier people here, it's set up to encourage each player to have their own voice and make their own decisions.

I think it's a great, easily repeatable game. The mechanics are relatively simple to teach and learn, and it's an award-winner for a reason!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone I've played this with has loved it, June 12, 2014
By 
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This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
I got hanabi partially as a teaching game, and partially to play with my gaming group. In both areas it's been a success.

In the teaching area, even the students who struggle to stay engaged have talked about how great of a game it is. (It's also helped with teaching them skills, we're working on game theory as well as analytical theory of mind in it, and they've been picking up thinking about what the other person might have been saying with the incomplete information transfer without prompting now!)

In the gaming group, every person I've played it with has enjoyed it, from those who specifically prefer games with hidden information, to those who like quick games, to those who prefer co-op. It's simple, yet replayable.

The not being able to see your own hand mechanic works really well. The balance of how much information you can pass, is well balanced. It works well with non-gamers and gamers, with those who are extremely analytical and those who aren't. How wide of a range of people it works with is extremely impressive to me. I was expecting it to be my sort of game, but I wasn't expecting it to work so well with such a wide range of people when I got it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a wonderful co-op multiplayer card game, November 1, 2013
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This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
I'm not going to spend a ton of time explaining the mechanics of this game, but here's a brief synopsis. Players are a team of fireworks specialists tasked with pulling off a successful fireworks show after a mishap. Players play with their cards FACING THEIR TEAMMATES so you'll never see what's in your own hand. Players take turns passing hints to their team or playing cards if they feel they've been given enough info. Cards played are ordered by color and numerical sequence. The goal by the end of the game is to complete each color firework in order from 1-5. Simple concept but lots of memory and strategy involved.

Average game length has been about 20 minutes for me and it's a blast (pun intended). If you're looking for the most bang for your buck (more puns) then this is definitely worth it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good for 3 and more players, August 7, 2013
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
Hanabi is a very good game from 3 players up. It has recently won the Spiel des Jahres award in Germany.
Hanabi is a cooperative game where everybody holds their cards the wrong way, so that You only see the card from the other players, but not Your own. You try to find out which cards You are holding and place them in the right way onto the table.
While the rules and components are simple, this game is amazingly deep. Simple yet elegant cooperative logical deduction game.Easy to teach and fast to play. Very clever and not so easy little game.
Hanabi works very well from 3 players up. But with only two players it does not work so well in my opinion!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple, yet stressful card game. Absolutely recommended., November 6, 2013
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This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
I bought this after a coworker let me borrow his copy. The mechanics of this game are incredibly simple: As a group, play colored cards in number order, one to five. The only caveat: You hold your cards backwards.

The difficulty in this game comes from the fact that you never know everything about your own cards, and you have to keep track of everything that everyone has said about the cards in everyone's hands. The team as a whole only gets to give eight clues total to each other. The only way to get more clues is by discarding cards.
To give a clue, you may tell one person either what cards in their hand are a certain color (These three cards are blue), or a certain number (These two cards are fives). The strategy comes in when you try to maximize the playable cards with the information given.

Although this is a very light game, it is not for the faint of heart. I've found this to be one of the most stressful games in my collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thousands of fireworks bursting in air, September 24, 2014
By 
Myra "Ignolopi" (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Hanabi Card Game (Toy)
6 colors. 2-5 players. 20-30 minutes. Best replay value EVER.

Well, I say this as someone who rarely plays a game more than twice in a row, and certainly not again the next day. But Hanabi is a puzzle I must solve at all costs... so I end up playing twice (in a row) at least 3 times a week (during lunch break). This has been going on for months now, and I'm not tired of it. I even get a little frustrated when we get a poor score on the second game and must fight the desire to play again.

Rundown:
- Hanabi is a cooperative game, meaning you win as a team, trying to get the best score you can. There is no losing. If you play with all 6 colors, that means making a stack of each color #1-5 for a total of 30 points (tho we usually count in negative, -1 is common).
- In Hanabi, it's ok to look at everyone else's hands, but you mustn't look at your own.
- Starting from the most colorful player, play continues clockwise as turns. On your turn you have 3 choices: use a hint token and hint another player; play a card in your hand (hopefully one someone has told you about); or discard a card to generate a hint token. Your team will quickly develop some all-around rules to keep things clear (e.g. put a draw on the left, discard from your right). If you have a team, let me know, because my friend wants to play competitively.
- Keep the rules and make clear hints because, other than hint-giving (limited to telling 1 color or 1 number in the hand), you aren't supposed to say a word. Or speak in sign-language. Or give eye signals. Or sigh when someone reaches for a hint token. We do it anyway.

Hone your logic, communication, and observation skills with Hanabi.
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Hanabi Card Game
Hanabi Card Game by R & R Games
$10.99 $10.25
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