Do you remember Gulpin’ Guppies? Gulpin’ Guppies has been with Cadaco (remember them?) and Tactic over the years and now it’s part of EPOCH’s Game Zone line. The game comes from Elliot Rudell, who started at Mattel and is maybe best known for UPWORDS (link to Amazon) which, along these lines has moved from Hasbro to Spin Master.
How to Play
Each player starts with four different sized guppies, all in the same color, and the goal is to get all of your guppies to the end of the board first. On a turn you’ll spin the spinner and decide which of your guppies you want to move. Any number of guppies can be on a space at one time, but if you land on a space with an opponent’s guppie that’s smaller than you (and any previously gulped guppies you might have tagging along with you) you may choose gulp them. Gulped guppies travel with the larger guppy until that guppy needs to jump the wave that’s moving down the board, then the gulped guppy is left behind. If you spin WAVE on your turn, then you’ll advance the pesky wave one space down the board and it will push back any guppies in its way. You have to spin an exact number to make it into the end zone, but if (like me) you hate that rule you can always omit it.
I can see why Gulpin’ Guppies has been out a few times before. It’s got a couple great gaming elements in it without being too hard for 4 year olds. Players have to decide which fish they should move and it’s not just looking at which fish needs to move down the board, but also which fish can gulp other fish and where they are in relation to the wave. It sounds like a bit to think about but it really isn’t. Yet it sets them up for more complex game thought when they get a little older. I also love that when you roll the WAVE, which is essentially “lose your turn,” you’re doing something. That seems so minor, but losing a turn can really be a bummer for younger players. If you’re lucky, you might just push back your opponents when you roll WAVE and that’s quite satisfying. Overall, Gulpin’ Guppies is a fun quick game for kids with some nice — but easy — decision making.
Gulpin’ Guppies Stats:
~$15 at Gulpin’ Guppies Amazon and local game retailers
Ages 4 and up
Game was provided free of charge from the manufacturer with no guarantee of review (I’ve got to like it).