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Cranium is a board game, supposedly for the whole family (although it does state 12+) but there are some questions/clues/tasks that will be beyond children without adult intervention...how many 12 year olds know who Billy Connelly is, for example? BUT it has to be played in teams, so as long as the teams are arranged with this in mind it shouldn't pose too much of a problem.
The thing that makes this game such fun is that it's a combination of all the old family favourites and has a bit of everything...pictionary, charades, name that tune, trivial pursuits, you even get to play with play-doh!!!
This has become a firm favourite in our family, and is usually even more fun at the end of Christmas Day after a few glasses of vino. I wouldn't recommend the vino before you play it for the first time, however, as the instructions are quite complex and can take some reading!
The only downside we found was that the play-doh/plastecine provided wasn't really enough for what you need and also dried out very quickly, so we ended up buying more especially for this game.
Cranium is a board game created in 1998 by Hasbro, and is labelled "The Game for your Whole Brain." It is a board game with a similar layout to the classic board game Ludo, and featured a variety of different questions and tasks designed to test your knowledge and intelligence. Players must get into teams of 2, and work together to be the first team to make it all the way round the board. Players can progress to the finish line by answering questions correctly within a time limit.
There are four categories:
Creative Cat: One person in the team either has to draw something or sculpt something out of clay while the other team member has to guess what it is.
Star Performer: One team member has to either do a charade of an object or person, or hum a tune, and the other team member has to guess what it is.
Word Worm: Players have to answer word-based questions including working out an anagram or spelling difficult words
Data Head: Players have to answer questions testing their general knowledge.
Cranium is a great game to play either with friends or family on all occasions, whether it be a special event such as Christmas or New Year's Eve or if you are simply having a quiet night in. I love this game, and every time we play everyone gets really into it and we all have great fun.
It is designed for people aged 12 and upwards and for at least players at a time.
Cranium is a fairly traditional family board game with some new twists on old favourites. It has the standard board which teams of players move around, and the final BRAIN that you need to get to. You can travel around the outside track, which takes longer, but if you are lucky and get certain questions right you can skip to the inner track which gets you there faster. You need at least four players for this game as it is played in teams.
It's a fairly standard question and answer game, with four main categories. These categories are each linked to a colour, which is shown on the board in coloured squares and also on the dice (you roll the dice and whichever colour comes up, you move to the next square on the board which is that colour).
Red is Data Head. This is basically facts and figures, general knowledge. This category is split into three parts. You might get a Factoid, which is a general knowledge question. You may have a Selectaquest which is a general knowledge question but with multiple choice answers so you can guess. Or you might get a Polygraph which is a statement and you have to say if you think it's true or false - you have a 50/50 chance!
Yellow is Word Worm, which is my favourite although I have a nasty habit of getting the spellings wrong despite being a spelling freak, it's the pressure of the game! There are categories for spelling forwards, spelling backwards ("Gnilleps"), solving an anagram (you get a clue) and a category called Blankout which is like the bit at the end of Wheel of Fortune where you have a phrase with only certain letters shown, you have to guess what it is. You're not allowed to write anything down.
Green is the one we all dread, it's Star Performer. This could mean you have to do an impression, hum a tune for your team mates to guess or act out a word or phrase (as in charades).
Blue is Creative Cat, and this can be drawing (like in Pictionary) where you have to sketch the word on the card, this can be either with your eyes open or shut depending on the category, or alternatively you can be asked to sculpt something out of Playdoh for your team members to guess.
Each question is timed, you get a minute, which isn't really very long. Some questions are also deemed "All Play", if you pick one of these cards all teams get to carry out the activity at the same time and compete with each other to be the first to guess the right answer.
When you finally reach the brain in the centre, you have to correctly carry out the tasks shown on one card from each category before being deemed the winner. The games can be quite lengthy though!
This game takes elements of many other games (like Humm Bug, Pictionary, Rapidough, Brit Quiz) and mixes them all together into one fantastic game that never gets boring.
So it's almost that time of year again where we overindulge, overspend and generally overexert ourselves in the name of Christmas. I love Christmas, everything about it, but my favourite thing is the traditional family games that take place after dinner; charades, Pictionary and the like. Nobody is ever particularly good at them, but everyone gets into the spirit and plays none the less. Last year we discovered a new game that manages to combine all the old favourites and throws in a few new ones for good measure and that game is Cranium.
Like most board games, the object of the game is to be the first to move around the board to the bit in the middle (in this game, Cranium Central), whilst having a whole lot of fun. Cranium is a team game for four or more people and you need to be in teams of at least two. To start, each team needs to pick a game piece and take a pad and pencil. You work your way around the four coloured sections of the board, each of which has a corresponding set of game cards with different activities to complete. There are four different categories:
-Red - Data Head-
These are all about testing your general knowledge. There are three different categories of data head question. Factoids are straight forward questions where the opposing team asks you a question. These are probably the hardest ones of all the games as you have no chance to guess. There's also Selectaquest, which are similar questions, but with multiple choice answers. The questions are slightly harder, but then you have got a 25% chance of getting it right. The third type of activity in this section is Polygraph, which is a true or false question.
You can confer with your team mates in all of these questions and you have a minute to answer. I think the Data Head category is the hardest of the four and some of the questions are just too difficult for younger players. This doesn't really stop it from being a family game though, because there are plenty of other games that younger players can take part in. Having said that, there are a wide variety of questions that include everything from history to geography and lots more beside. There are also picture questions and even some on things like Harry Potter.
-Yellow - Word Worm-
As the title suggests, the challenges in this section are for budding linguists. The categories include spelling words. These are often more difficult words that perhaps have a silent letter or an unusual formation. There's also Gnilleps, which is spelling words backwards. The words in this category are slightly easier to spell because you've also got the challenge of doing it backwards, which is much more difficult than you think. In both of these categories, you are not allowed to write the word down, which (if you're anything like me) makes it so much more difficult!
There are two other types of challenge in this section, the first of which is Zelpuz and is an anagram game. Your team is passed a card which has both the anagram and a cryptic clue to help you out. Some of these you'll get straight away, others you can stare at until the end of time and still not even be close! Again, there is a limit of a minute to solve the puzzle. We have actually adapted this game a little because the number of words in the anagram doesn't necessarily correspond to the number of words in the solution, which makes it very difficult, so we actually say how many words are in the solution. The last game is Blankout which is a little like hangman, but with a couple of the letters left in. Again some are immediately obvious, others not so.
-Green - Star Performer-
This is a category for all the budding actors and actresses out there and encompasses the popular charades game. The three challenge types here are Cameo, Copycat and Humdinger. Cameo is the same as charades and all of the same rules apply here. In Copycat, you have to act like a famous person and your team mates have to guess who you are. You aren't allowed to say names or places. In Humdinger you have to hum the tune on the card to your team-mates who have to guess what it is you are humming. I am tone deaf, so am absolutely useless at this one! The tunes are generally popular ones with an easy to recognise chorus - as long as the person humming isn't as bad as me!
-Blue - Creative Cat-
This is my favourite category and includes Cloodle, Sensosketch and Sculptorades. Cloodle is like Pictionary and Sensosketch is similar but you have to draw with your eyes closed. The things are generally easier to draw in the latter category. In Sculptorades, you have to model the thing from the clay that is provided. This one is a lot of fun although I will say that the one minute time limit is very difficult to keep to. We tend to give two minutes for this one, because the minute is over before you've even decided how much clay you need. For each of these categories you get a hint, although this sometimes makes guessing more difficult - for example 'bowling alley' is listed a place, whereas I would consider a place to be somewhere more geographical, but that may just be me.
To start the game, you choose a category and then the team on your right picks a card. If you complete the challenge successfully, you roll the coloured die and move to the next space of that colour. If you are unsuccessful, you stay where you are. Play then moves to the next team and so on until you reach Cranium Central. There are two paths available - fast track and scenic path, if you get the first challenge right, you can opt to go down the fast track, but if you are wrong you have to take the scenic route. Whenever we play, we opt to take the scenic route anyway, as we find that the fast track is so much quicker that the game is over before it's started almost.
When you get to Cranium Central you have to answer one card from each category correctly to win. When you get one right, you keep the card and move around the cranium to the next category, which you attempt on your next go. The winner is the first team to hold all four cards in the central square.
This really is a great game for all the family and it is very interactive. There are lots of different challenges, so there will be something that everyone is good at and something that everyone is bad at. Although it is a team game, we have actually played it with just the two of us. We each take five cards from each colour and work through them for the red and yellow cards you get a point if you get the answer right and for the blue and green cards you get a point if the other person correctly guesses what you are drawing / sculpting / acting etc. It's just as much fun as with the team game and you don't have to bother getting the board and everything out.
The only problem we have found with the game is that the clay provided dries out very quickly. There is a little tub to keep it in, but it doesn't seem to be air tight. We solved this problem by buying a tub of play-do and we just keep it in the tub it came in, so no problem with drying out.
This game is currently on sale on amazon.co.uk for just over £18, which I think is a real bargain. Its RRP is £24.99 - still excellent value for a game that will provide hours of entertainment and that can be played time and time again without repeating the cards. So, if like me you like family games at Christmas and you're looking for something slightly different, I would definitely recommend that you give Cranium a try!
Cranium is a board game which seems to me to be a mish mash of several other popular board games and traditional games, including elements similar to trivial pursuit, scattergories, charades, pictionary and scrabble. We had owned this game for some time but recently played it with another couple we are friends with for the first time in ages and we had forgotten how much we enjoyed it.
Basically, you play in teams and the aim is quite simple, to get around the board as quickly as possible by rolling a strange, 10 sided die which has colours on it (red, blue, yellow, green and purple - x2 of each). This determines which colour you land on and also which task you will perform to win your turn.
There are also two tracks you can follow, the slower outside one with far more steps on it or the speedier inside lane fast track which has less steps. The board is split into four quarters with a 'brain' symbol in between each section, when you get to each brain (represented by the purple colour on the die) you can then switch onto the quicker fast track by taking a challenge which is selected by the other team (so obviously they pick a category they think you are weak at).
The aim is to get all the way round the board and on to the large brain in the center and then to collect one card for each type of challenge. The four types of challenge are as follows:
Data Head (red): These are fact based questions, can be scientific in nature and generally have a specific right or wrong answer.
Word Worm (yellow): These questions are all about words, some ask you to spell a word, some ask you to spell it backwards (very hard after a few glasses of wine) and some will ask you for the meaning of the word (which is usually multiple choice).
Star Performer (Green): For these challenges you have to usually act something out, i.e. mime a film title a bit like charades or hum a tune for your team mates to guess. Sometimes it asks you to do an impression of a celebrity without saying certain words, a bit like scattergories. A very active challenge this one!
Creative Cat (Blue): The blue category is where the tub of clay provided comes into play! For this category you will either have to draw a word or phrase (much like pictionary) without speaking or mould an item out of clay for your team mates to guess.
All of these challenges are carried out against the clock and you have one minute on an egg timer to complete them. There is an individual box of challenge cards for each type of challenge and a place on the board marked where they should sit, you do need to remember to put cards you have used to the back. We have yet to come full circle on our challenge cards having played the game about 15 times fully.
Generally you will be only doing the challenge for your team but sometimes a 'Club Cranium' question comes up and this is a bit like an 'all play' in pictionary, i.e. both teams get a crack at it and if the opposing team wins you lose your right to move and they get an extra go.
We have lots of laughs playing this game and it is pretty fun to be involved in. Personally I think as long as you throw yourself into it and are prepared to look a bit of a fool in front of your playing buddies, everyone will enjoy it. It is well suited to adults rather than children as for under 10s it may seem a bit complicated, but it works well with any number of players between 4 and 16.
You can currently buy this board game through Amazon for £34.99, this may seem steep but you will get plenty of uses out of it and it can also then be extended simply by buying extra cards to use with the same board.
I like the fact that this utilises and brings together so many different 'best bits' from other games we all recognise and are familiar with and I think in that respect it is clever and something a bit different.
Apparently the ethos of the creators was to make a 'Game For Your Whole Brain' and in my opinion they have certainly done that, there is something for everyone within this game and it is very difficult not to have fun when you are playing it.
For us this is usually bought out mostly over christmas and I can virtually guarantee that at some point on xmas or boxing day I will be watching my mother in law, half cut on her annual glass of sherry, trying to 'act like' Beyonce Knowles. For the opportunities like this that Cranium provides, I simply have to award it 5 stars.
What is it?
Cranium is a board game designed for teams to have to 'think' ... but don't worry it is actually really good fun, the challenges or questions are interesting and overall you end up on the floor laughing! The challenges can be a creative challenge, a perforance challenge, a word challenge or a knowledge question and even people particually gifted in acting or art may struggle - making it even more fun!
Who is it suitable for?
There is a junior edition which is suitable for anyone over 8, whilst its adult addition I would say is suitable for anyone over 12, but really I would say it is more aimed at late teens early twenties. The junior edition of cranium is really informative for younger audiences.
So really... any good?
Yes. It is certainly going to result in having you bursting in fits of laughter, and is a nice 'adult' board game which I personally think sometimes is actually exactly what you need. The questions such as humdigger questions I find that half of songs I don't know so we normally choose another song at our discretion - such as 'Twinkle Twinkle little star' but otherwise I think with a bit of guess work the all of the questions can be answered correctly.
One problem I have found is that once you have played it for a long period of time you can get to know the questions - a problem simply solved by purchasing more at the manufacturers website. Another problem that I have recently thought of is that the modelling clay or playdo given for use in some of the creative tasks seems to dry up after around about 1 year, even if you keep it in the seal container that is provided to stop it drying out.
I would fully recommend it!
This is a great game if there are at least a few of you to participate. However, it can be lengthy if there are three or more teams, so don't start it at midnight thinking you will "just have a quick game"! The idea is for each team (of at least two people) to complete as many of the challenges as they can and get round the board before the other team/s.
I like the fact that the categories are so different; for instance, one minute you are trying to unravel an anagram, and the next you are frantically building a playground out of modelling clay, all against the clock. Other tasks include drawing whilst blindfolded, humming tunes for your team members to guess, and trivia questions. If you like variety, this is an excellent choice.
This version suggests that it is for adults and teens, and I would have to agree as younger children would probably find it quite tough. (Fortunately for them, there is a junior version.) I would suggest that this is suited to the more avid game-players as it can go on for a while. The good thing is that it changes from one round to the next, so if you don't like (or are not very good at) one category, you have the chance to redeem yourself on your next turn.
The board and the pieces are of quite good quality overall, although once you open the modelling clay, it doesn't seem to last that long and will go dry despite being in a plastic container, making it impossible to use. Bear this in mind if you haven't used it for a while or you could end up inviting the family round for a game of Cranium and finding that you have to use a Blu-Tack substitute!
This is a great game, it is fantastic fun for all the family or a group of friends. It is certainly been played on a number of Christmas days in my household!
Cranium is basically a combination of a number of other games i.e. pictionary, charades, trivial pursuit and even scrabble! You need a minimum of 4 players (2 on each team) but you can have as many as you want.
The aim of the game is to move around the board and finish in the cranium circle. You move by successfully completing a number of challenges. These fall into four main categories:
* Creative Cat (drawing clues, creating clay models etc)
* Data Head (trivia, true or false questions)
* Star performer (charades, humming a tune)
* Word worm (spelling, anagrams)
Therefore, there really is something for everyone which is why it is so popular. It is also very varied so you never get bored.
The only criticism I would have is that it is difficult to play with large numbers. There are so many categories and rules for each that in my experience it is difficult to keep a big group of people under control! I would definately reccomend playing it with a smaller number first until you get to grips with the rules.
I have only played the original version but would be interested in playing the new WOW edition.
Cranium is a classic game which has been around for a while now and it is a family favourite which had to make its appearance at the table this christmas. It needs teams of at least 2 but there are enough counters for there to be 4 seperate teams, although don't forget, the more teams you have, the longer the game will take to play.
Cranium has a small board which folds into 4 and it is split into 4 zones; creative cat, word worm, data head and star performer. The concept of the game is that you go around, landing on the different sections, and then you can't move on untill you have got one of the challenges right. On the cranium landing sections, you are allowed to pick which ever category you want your team to try to complete and if you get it right first time, you get to move to the next one, via the fast track. I really like this fast track option as it makes the game move a bit faster, as some games can go really slowly and get a bit boring, so this at least keeps the pace up and makes the game not drag on.
Data head are the hardest in my opinion and they often involve getting a hard factual question right, these can be true or false, or multiple choice, or plain questions and answers. There are also a few which involve identifying the picture or a fact to do with a picture, and this is fine but i can find the pictures a little too small sometimes.
Word worm require wordy things and I think that these can be pretty hard too. They mainly involve the solving of an anagram, or the spelling of a word, or the spelling backwards, or they can be something like guesssing the meaning of a word, from a multiple choice list.
Star performer requires a charade to be performed, or a song to be hummed for other members of your team to guess. There is also some cards which need you to act as a famous person for the other team members to guess who you are, these can be people like cherie blair, winston churchill or other people and this can be funny but hard. Sometimes I think that this is not a very suitable category for younger people.
Creative cat is one of the easier categories and it can be drawing similar to pictionary, or with your eyes closed, or sculpting using clay which is really funny, in all of these cases your team mate/s have to guess what you are making all within the allotted time. This is one of the favourites as it is so funy trying to guess and it normally gets chosen when there is a free choice.
I think that with 2 teams this game tends to last a good hour but we have a lot of fun with it and I think that this is a good amount of time.
I first played this game a week ago and have by now played it five times. I played with my husband's family, whom are all British between the ages of 16 to 50, and we all had a great time. Learning the game was not very difficult neither was playing.
We played the UK edition so that is the one I will be reviewing. The game is set for 4 people or more and will take about an hour to play depending on how many teams there are.
After playing this game a lot of times you will end up knowing the questions by heart and that's where the additional booster box 1 comes handy. You get 800 new questions which is 200 cards in every category.
Cranium is created by Hasbro, an American company who makes toys as well as games. Their products can be found in numerous countries, such as; Australia, Japan, Mexico, Canada, the UK, France and more than 100 other countries throughout the world.
Hasbro has a wide selection of cranium games for all ages, such as; Cranium WOW, Cranium Cadoo, Cranium Cloodle, Cranium Letter Line-Up, Cranium Sculptorades, Cranium Humdinger and varies of Cranium card decks. All games can be found on their website http://www.hasbro.com/games/cranium/browse.cfm?cat=74 where information and prices are posted.
The box which the game comes in is colourful with a purple brain on the front, also called purple planet or cranium central.
The box includes:
4 character card boxes
800 character cards
4 game pieces coloured green, blue, red and yellow.
10 sided dice
60 seconds timer
4 Sketch pads
~How to play~
The aim of the game is to be the first team to go from the purple planet labelled start to the cranium central in the middle. Once you get to the cranium central your team must finish the last challenge to win. Each team should have a minimum of 2 players otherwise you will not be able to play.
When a club cranium card is drawn (a purple club cranium mark is shown on these cards) the game pause for an all team challenge, where the winning team receives a bonus roll. On the cranium club cards you will find the rules for the specific challenge and what you have to do. Every time you finish a challenge you keep the card even though it is a club cranium one.
After the club cranium card is played the winner of the club cranium card takes one bonus roll and moves. Keep in mind that the winning team only rolls and draw a card with a challenge. Then the team whose turn it was when the club cranium card was drawn takes its normal turn.
If your team wins the club cranium card and it was your first activity while on a planet cranium, roll and move onto the fast track.
If your team doesn't win the club cranium and it was your first activity while on a planet cranium, you can still try for the fast track on your normal turn.
The team on your right draws your card from the character card box that matches the coloured space your team's game piece is standing on. On your first turn, and every time you are on a purple Planet cranium, you get to choose which character box card you want to play.
If you are successful, roll the dice and move to the next colour indicated on the dice. You must stop on every purple planet cranium even if your roll would otherwise take you past it. If you roll purple simply move to the next planet cranium. Your turn is now over and the team on your left will have their go.
~Getting there quicker~
On every planet cranium you have a chance to get on the fast track. If your team is successful on the first activity you do on the planet cranium, you take the fast track otherwise you stay on the outer track. The difference between the two is that there are twice as many figures on the outer than what there are on the inner, so called fast track. They also have different figures. The fast track has a running figure and the outer, slower track, has a head that resembles some kind of cat.
Your team wins when you have reached the Purple Planet in the very middle of the board with one card from every category. When in the cranium central the other teams choose a final challenge for you and if you are successful you win. If you are not successful you will have to wait until your next turn.
~Character card boxes~
Cranium has four different character card boxes with a variety of challenges and charades. Each character card box has a colour that represents their category; Word Worm (Yellow), Star Performer (Green), Data Head (Red) and Creative Cat (Blue).
Are you good with words or solve a lot of crosswords then this is the category for you. In Worm activities you have to unscramble words, spell correctly, guess definitions, fill in the blanks and even spell backwards.
Example: To win the zelpuz, your team must rearrange all the letters in the mixed-up puzzle below to find the answer. I'll read the hint aloud then start the timer.
Hint: Morning maize
Puzzle: Clean forks
Example: To win the spellbound the team choose a teammate who can correctly spell the word below on the first try without writing it down.
Example: To win this blankout, your team must complete the puzzle below by filling in the blanks with the missing letters. I'll read the hint aloud, pass the card to you then start the timer.
Hint: Fanatic periphery.
Puzzle: L_ _ _ _ _ _C F_ _ _ G_
Example: To win the gnilleps, choose a teammate who can correctly spell the word below backwards on the first try without writing it down. I'll read the word to the speller and then start the timer.
Example: To win this lexicon, your team must determine the correct definition of the word below. I'll read the word and definitions aloud, pass the card and start the timer.
A) Valve separating the oesophagus and the stomach
B) slug-like mollusc
C) food expert or pundit
D) small dining room
If you draw a Star performer activity you will have to start humming and whistling tunes, impersonating celebrities and acting out clues/charades. These are definitely activities for the showbiz person who keeps track on the famous.
Example: To win this humdinger, choose a performer from your team who can get you to guess the song on the back of this card by humming or whistling with no lyrics or gestures. I'll pass the card to the performer and then start the timer.
Song: Stayin' Alive with Bee Gees
Example: To win this copycat, choose a performer from your team who can get you to guess the answer by acting like the famous person or character named on the back of this card. The performer can talk like the person but can not say names of people or places. I'll pass the card to the performer and start the timer.
Famous person: Rik Mayall
Example: To win this Cameo, choose a performer from your team who can get you to guess the answer on the back of this card by acting out silent clues, just like charades. I'll read the hint aloud and then pass the card to the performer and start the timer.
This challenge is also available as a club cranium card where everyone plays the cameo. One from each team act out silent clues, just like charades. The first team to guess the answer wins an immediate bonus roll.
Categories in this specific challenge can be anything from a thing to an expression.
Data head activities are for the general knowledge person. They test you on your knowledge on uncommon info, true/false queries and challenging you with multiple-choice questions.
Example: Your team has to determine whether this statement is true or false.
Statement: Cash points have been installed on every continent.
Example: To win the selectaquest, your team must correctly answer the multiple-choice question below. I'll read the question and choices aloud, pass the card and start the timer. Question: Dance music star Fatboy Slim started out with which band?
A) Happy Mondays
B) Beautiful South
C) Fine young Cannibals
D) The Housemartins.
Example: To win this factoid, your team must correctly answer the question on this card. I'll read the question aloud and then start the timer.
Question: In the Isle of Man TT motorcycle race, what do the initials TT stands for?
With Creative cat activities you sketch, sculpt with clay and draw with your eyes closed. In this category you get clues for what you are drawing or sculpting, such as; a thing, place, expression, action, condition or an animal. All the cards in this character box are also available as club cranium card where all teams compete.
Draw clues on paper with no talking, letters or symbols.
Guess the answer correctly by sculpting the subject with no talking or gestures.
Answer: Tower Bridge
Draw clues on paper with no peeking, talking, letters or symbols. The artists' eyes must stay closed during the challenge.
Hint: A thing.
Answer: Double Chin.
~So what do I think of Cranium?~
This is a very versatile game for teens and adults. I do recommend being at least 15 when playing this game because the questions and people to act like could be very difficult. There is definitely something for everyone; the intelligent one, the creative one, the language specialist and the actor. If you are not good at anything, which I doubt, I still think Cranium will give you a great time with your friends and family.
If you are not British or haven't much knowledge of English politicians or celebrities you might have problems knowing who some of the people in the questions are, such as Ian Paisley, Des Lynam and Rik Mayall. I am Swedish and most of the names were unknown for me but it didn't stop me from having a good time. If you are in the same position as me you could either take another question or the rest of your team can try figure it out, depending on how many players you are in each team.
In the rules there is no mentioning of who gets to start the game. The times I have played Cranium we have either let the dice decide by trying to role the teams colour and the first team who gets their own colour begins. In other cases we have chosen the youngest team to begin, either by the youngest player or by adding all ages in one team together and see whose team has the youngest age.
I would say that the biggest down-side with this game is still whether or not you are familiar with English celebrities or not due to the fact that this is an UK edition. On the other hand this is for English people and there are other editions for other nationalities.
The tagline 'You will not believe what your friends can do' might be exaggerating a little bit but this game keeps you interested and makes you want to play it, over and over again. Therefore I definitely recommend this game.
Cranium is a comical, colourful boardgame in which 2 or more teams of 2 or more players attempt to complete activities (e.g. charades, spelling backwards, drawing like in pictionary) as they travel around a board.
There are 4 categories of activity, each associated with a fun character, which both people in the team take part in: "Creative Cat" involves drawing, drawing blindfold or making sculptures out of clay for the other team member to guess. "Word Worm" contains annagrams, spelling challenges and cryptic fill-in games. "Data Head" (by far the most difficult) involves general knowledge and true or false questions. "Star Performer" tasks include humming a tune, charades and acting as a famous person. All of these categories are enjoyable, though most people are biased towards certain ones as they discover their talents.
To complete the game, a team must go around the board, winning the challenges to roll a die. Sometimes the team may choose their category, other times it is given to them and the option of "Fast Track" quicker lanes open up throughout the game. To finish, the team must win challenges in all 4 categories.
This game is obviously well made. It looks attractive, with a fantastic colour scheme, fun characters and cool fonts, right down to the funky 10-sided die and people-shaped counters. The variety of activities makes it a more complex and enduring game than its most similar competitor, Pictionary, and also allows it to appeal to more people (especially men who in my experience prefer the general knowledge style activities to creative ones). The game is substantial but not overly long and dull, usually lasting 11/2 hours. There is a good balance between the amount of skill and knowledge required and the elements of chance.
The activities are challenging but not too difficult. The sculpture making task seems to be restricted by the timer, but generally the timescale is realistic. More reserved people may find the performance tasks particularly hard to complete, but this can be good for bringing people together or breaking the ice. There are around 200 cards for each category, so there are plenty of hours of gameplay to be had. Booster boxes of 800 more cards can also be purchased.
Though Cranium is at the more expensive price range for boardgames (£30-£40), this is because of the quantity and quality of the contents (including a solid board, 4 headed pads of paper, 4 pencils, 1 10-sided die, 4 plastic counters, 4 boxes of 200 category cards, sand timer and graphic instructions), the originality of the game and its design. Overall it is worth the price.
As a family we are always looking for gun games to entertain us, normally at dinners, or at christmas. We really enjoy Pictionary, so have been looking for something on that basis, but felt like we needed a change and Cranium seemed to fit the bill.
I found Cranium quite expensive compared to Pictionary, so I was hoping for something really good. The box is brightly coloured and has lots of animation which appeals to all ages. The box is quite large as it has a few contents. When I opened the box and read the instructions I was quite confused. It didnt seem like the easiest game to just start playing, but once I had read them and studied them I was ready to go.
You start off the game in teams (minimum of two per team) and the team with the soonest birthday member starts. The dice is not numbered and instead has colours, so when you roll that colour you move to that space and answer the associated question. There are four catagories of question:
Creative cat (drawing etc).
Data head (number or letter based question).
Performing (cherades, singing etc).
Word worm (wordy based question).
Included is a pencil and pads for drawing and some clay for sculpting, some of this has to be done blidnfolded depedning on the question.
Some spaces you land on only one team plays and other spaces all teams go head to head.
The ultimate aim is progressing faster than the other teams and making it to the central 'brain' first.
Once you have worked out how to play this game it is a fantastic laugh and really good fun. It is a great game for all ages, however sometimes the questions are targetted at older people as they mantion TV shows or actressers that the younger generation would not know.
This is a board game that has something for everyone. There are 4 categories of questions; "Data Head" (general knowledge), "Creative Cat" (drawing, modelling), "Word Worm" (spelling) and "Star Performer" (charades).
The game is designed for late teenagers/adults and is played in pairs with a minimum of 2 pairs required for a game to take place. The board is designed with different colour spots that go around the board. Each colour spot refers to a certain category. In order to roll the dice and move around the board you must get your question correct. Once you have gone all the way around the board, you must then answer a correct question from each category to be crowned winners.
We have not had a dull game of this against friends and family, drinking or not drinking (having a drink helps when you do star performer, for me anyway!!).
You do not have to be super intelligent either as only one category invlolves questions and a lot of those are multiple choice. The board comes with pads of paper, pencils and plasticine for the sculpting in creative cat.
Multiple Choice questions (can refer with team mate)
Non multiple choice questions (can refer with team mate)
True or False (can refer with team mate)
Drawing (one person draws whilst the other person guess's what it is)
Drawing whilst blindfolded (one person draws whilst the other person guess's what it is)
Sculpting (one person sculpts whilst the other person guess's what it is)
Act out clues of someone famous (one person acts whilst the other person guess's who it is)
Act out clues of something (one person acts whilst the other person guess's what it is)
Hum or whistle a tune to a song(one person whistle/hums whilst the other person guess's what song it is)
Spell a word
Spell a word backwards
Guess the definition of the word
There are 4 purple planets on the way around the board to get to the end. You must stop on these planets no matter what you roll. If you get your first question right after you land on the planet, you get to take the 'fast route', which means there are less spaces to the next purple planet!
Brilliant game for everyone of all intellect.
This is one of my friends' and I's favourite board games. It can keep us entertained for hours! The aim of the game is to get round the board and to the brain in the centre. You get round the board by picking cards and answering questions or doing activities. When you get to the centre you must answer one question from all four sections correctly in a row. A timer is included with the game which is used for all the section
The game is made up of four different question sections. The first is Creative Cat. When you pick one of these cards you will be asked to either draw something with your eyes open or closed, or to sculpt something with the clay provided. With Creative Cat there is also the possiblity that all teams will be asked to perform the task.
The second is Word Worm. For this section you may be asked to spell a word, either forward or backwards. You may also be asked to define a word. We usually find this section the hardest. Some of the words are very complex to spell, whilst the ones we are asked to define we haven't even heard of! Some are absurd, but it is funny!
The third section is Data Head. For this section you are asked questions about history, such as what happened on a paticular day, geography, such as which country is highlighted in red and whether a fact is true or false.
The fourth ans final section is Star Performer. Like Creative Cat all teams may be able to perform the task, though it is not the case with each card in the section. In this section you maybe asked to act like a celebrity, act out an action like charades or hum or sing whilst you team guess what you are.
It's a really fabulous game and is great fun. You need four people to play as you require at least two teams made up of two people. We found two teams was best as it took less time so didn't get tedious and was actually more fun. I'd definately recommened it!
If you aren't sure which game to buy then Cranium is probably the one to go for. At first the rules can be a little tricky to grasp as you are confronted with so many different colours, shapes and sizes, although once somebody has done that it makes the game a great experience.
Players essentially move around the board in teams with a counter, answering various different questions as they go. What is simply great about Cranium is the sheer variety of questions. For instance, I do not particularly enjoying the humming or acting questions, but because there are quiz questions or word puzzles, it soon comes round to something I enjoy.
Something that annoyed me was that you need at least 4 people to play, and that isn't always possible so it would seem that the game may not always get its full usage. Another factor is that the came can sometimes be priced quite highly, as it was when I first purchased the game. This was probably due to the high content of pieces and information, which is fine, but if you aren't looking to spend much, this may not be for you!