For my birthday, my friend bought me the Hocus Pocus board game. I was skeptical at first because it seemed the game was catered to kids. As we played a couple of rounds of the game, we learned how challenging this game was and how it stuck to the source material. Since my first time playing, I still have yet to win a game against the trio of witches.
Hocus Pocus is a collaborative game in which players must stun the Sanderson witches three times before the sun rises. If the sun rises before this is completed, the players lose along with running out of potion ingredients to draw. This seems to be a simple explanation, however the game is more challenging than that.
The challenging part comes from the lack of visibility of available ingredients. Cards in a player’s hand are kept secret. To begin a turn, I would ask a question to my friend to determine what color or ingredient type she has in her hand. The only way to see her hand entirely is to play an ingredient with Binx the cat on it. This allows one player to reveal their whole hand. It’s difficult to collaborate when you can’t actively speak to each other.
There are three ways to stun a witch. An example of stun is to have five different potion ingredients, but they’re the same color. The same witch can be stunned three times in a row. Besides being unable to speak with other players, it’s difficult to coordinate the ingredients to align with the stun for a witch. In multiple games, we were missing an ingredient and weren’t able to draw the ingredient we needed, so we lost the game.
I’m impressed with the Hocus Pocus game. The game is easy to learn and each game takes anywhere between 30 – 45 minutes. The game says it’s for six-year-old kids, but as a twenty six-year-old who’s obsessed with Halloween, I loved every second of playing this game. Hocus Pocus has a lot of childhood memories for me and it was awesome to be able to relive them. Additionally, I like how this is a collaborative game. It’s a great way to teach younger kids the importance of working with others.
Hocus Pocus is a fun, spooky game that’s family-friendly or the game to bring out during the Spooky season. I still haven’t managed to win this game, but the challenge has been accepted.