Designer: Laura Erwin
Laura was kind enough to provide us with a prototype of her game Potions Please to review prior to its Kickstarter launch. Read on for our review.
Potions Please is a quick and fun card game for 2-4 players, which uses a set collection mechanic.
An overview of the gameplay...
In potions please players first choose a witch, each one with their own unique special ability that can be used once per game. Each player also begins the game with a hand of potion ingredients.
The aim of the game is to create potions and gain powers in order to become the Head Witch, to do this you must be the quickest player to finish all 4 types of potion.
Set up on the table will be the “market”, consisting of 5 potion ingredients available to purchase in each round. Underneath that, there will be three potions which are currently available for each player to make. These cards show the mix of ingredients required to make each potion.
Players take it in turns to run through four actions, performing all of these if they are able to in their turn – these are:
Ask – Ask another player for a certain type of ingredient (anything but a wild card) if the player has this card in hand, they must give it to the player making the request.
Take – Players have 5 credits which they can spend each round at the market. Each ingredient has a price depending on where it sits in the market. Players can take one or two ingredients in each round, up to the value of 5 credits. Any leftover credits cannot be carried across to future rounds.
Drink – Players can drink potions that they have already created for a special one-off ability, potions that have been drunk still count towards the end game goal.
Make – Players can create a potion once they have all of the required ingredients in their hand. They then collect that potion card and place it in front of them as one of their completed potions.
Players repeat this turn sequence until one player manages to create all four potions triggering the end of the game.
So, what did we think of Potions Please?
Potions please is a really lovely lightweight card game, it makes for a good filler game as it plays super quickly in around 15-20 minutes. It works perfectly as an introductory set collection game for people who are new to the hobby and for families as it is super easy to grasp and can be taught in a couple of minutes
We liked the player interaction that is prompted by the "ask" action and the push your luck type element that this brought. It is nice that you have a sequence of actions to perform each turn rather than having to pick one action as with many other games of this style.
The colour scheme in potions please is really refreshing and bright, the pastel colour scheme isn't one that we have seen in many games so is really unique and works fantastically with the theme of the game.
We loved the style of the artwork across the game. The artwork for the witches really stands out and are beautifully designed.
The art style for the ingredients and the potions is clean and simple while perfectly matching the theme. We thought it was nice that each of the potions in a colour family have their own bottle design rather than just a repeated design for each colour.
We also thought it was a nice addition that the box artwork is included as a back for many of the cards.
While learning the game we came across something which we thought was a particularly nice touch. Each of the potions cards is labelled with a small symbol in the bottom right hand corner, (a skull for purple, a heart for pink, a moon for blue and a star for green). These have been included for players who are colour blind and might struggle to differentiate between the different types of potions by just the colours alone. We thought this was a really thoughtful and inclusive element to add the game and something that isn't always accounted for.
Overall we think that Potions Please would make a really fun addition to any collection, especially those looking for a quick filler game to play in a family or with children (especially around Halloween time!)