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Everyone has a board game or two, maybe an old one from way back in time, or maybe even a new one from one of the latest television shows that are gracing our screens.
I have several board games as I find they can help stem that flow of boredom and bring my family together as one, although it's sometimes as one arguing monster if things don't quite go a certain persons way, mentioning no names.
Anyway, as my kids like to watch the latest television games shows they almost always like to buy the games shows spin off board games when ever they hit the market, which inevitably happens as soon as the show becomes popular, and one such game show amongst their favourite at the moment is a show called Deal or No Deal.
Firstly, for those that have never watched the show itself, it is a simple to understand channel four game show which consists of 22 boxes...(in other countries they use such things as brief cases, envelopes and other containers... but in Britain it's red boxes)...22 contestants, a contestant panel, which they called the 'east wing' and the west wing', a single contestant seat, which is the 'Hot Seat', a telephone, a voice on the other end of the telephone called the banker, (with a B), an audience and a man with some very strange facial hair who's not as funny as he thinks he is.
To play the game, both the game show and the board game, is very simple indeed.
Firstly the 22 contestant are all given a red box each, which is sealed and has a 'secret' amount of cash value hidden inside, not real cash of course or they'd all be legging it. These cash values range from a measly 1 pence to a rather impressive £250,000.
A contestant is then chosen, seemingly at random, although in the show they always seem to have all the 'randomly chosen' contestants family at hand near the front of the audience.
Anyway, that chosen contestant then sits in the 'Hot seat', taking his or her box with them. Then the systematically select the remaining 21 boxes and eliminate each of them one at a time, revealing the cash values inside the boxes as they go.
As each cash value is revealed that box, and cash value, is taken out of the game, striking the said amount from the list of cash values on the cash value board, (hang on... just checking that sounds right... yep, that'll do).
In the first round the player chooses five boxes then an offer is made by the banker/telephone. After that initial opening round it is then only three boxes per round that are chosen, with an offer being made after every third box, until you're left with two boxes.
Although regardless of whether the player 'Deals' or not the game does continue in the same way, only the monetary values on opening of each box means a different thing to each player. What I mean by that is if the player has dealt then they want to then find the higher values in the boxes, but if they haven't dealt then they want to find the lower values so that they end up with the highest amount at the end, ( do you get me?).
What's the difference between the television show and this board game..?
Not a lot really. As I said they are played in more or less the same way, apart from the fact that there's no banker on the other end of the phone and, which may be good news to some, there's no Noel Edmunds breathing down your neck. Plus, you don't need 21 of your mates to come round your tiny little 'bedsit' to get the game going.
You do have to set up the board game, which can be a bit 'fiddly' shall we say, with the 22 boxes having to be put together before you can put the bits of cardboard with the money amount into them. These boxes are a bit of a nuisance to put together and even when constructed they seem to be as strong as a wet paper napkin in a force ten hurricane.
Then there's the playing board, which you will have to make a bit of room for as it is about 700mm by 400mm, (roughly), so make sure your dining table is cleared, which seems to split at the creases so putting it back into the box on finishing the game is a task in itself.
The board lay out is pretty simple to understand, with the 22 red boxes curving around the left and right side, unlike in the show where the boxes are in a straight line.
The boxes should then be placed around the board accordingly, with the phone being placed in the centre above the monetary values. These monetary values are split into two columns, one blue, containing the eleven lower amounts, from a penny to £750, and the second column in the red column, with values from £1000 to a whopping £250,000.
But apart from that the way the game is played is the same as the game show itself.
I was looking forwards to playing this one as I thought it would be a rather entertaining game, even if I wasn't, and still am not, a big fan of the channel four game.
Sadly though I felt pretty disappointed more or less from the start as I first found the initial setting up of the game took me quite some time, mainly due to the fact that I had to spend what seemed like an eternity constructing every single last one of the ever lasting 22 boxes. With everyone of them being a bit on the fiddly side let me tell you, especially when you have to put the small pieces of card with the money value inside the constructed boxes.
Then there's the actual telephone, which is supposed to help you keep track of what boxes have been chosen so that it can give you an offer accordingly. But sadly, even though it looks quite 'retro' it has a canny ability to spoil the entire game with the way it seems to have a mind of its own.
I can now safely say that I have watched the television show and have now played the game, finding them to be very alike indeed, both taking little, or no real skill to actually play. It's a simple matter of choosing a box and seeing what is inside it, then, if you're offered an amount you like, or you think the amounts that are left on the board are likely to go, then take the money and run.
It's not mastermind, nor is it the Krypton factor, but the game can still be a bit of fun to play and can bring the family together.
Sadly though, the board game is not well built and probably won't last too much longer if the state of it now is anything to go by. The board itself seems to be falling apart at the seems, ( I know how it feels sometimes), then there's the boxes which, once constructed, seem to want to fall apart when ever you try and open them, which is a bit of a nuisance as you have to open them to reveal the cash value inside.
Even the actual playing board struggles to stay flat on the table, with the edges seeming to want to lift off when ever they get the chance.
Then there's the business of actually putting it away, which is a bit of a nightmare in itself as the board has already torn slightly on the creases, which isn't good at all, and the boxes just don't want to stack up against each other nor actually fit into the box itself.
And as for what is probably is a very important part of the game, the telephone, well this thing seems to have a mind of its own, sometimes shouting out numbers that have nothing to do with the game at all, or sometimes just stopping mid game and forgetting the many cash values that have been inputted into it, meaning that the game has to be restarted.
In all, yet another not so fine effort which has tried to take advantage of a popular game show hoping that people would give the board game the benefit of the doubt so long as the games idea was what they were used to watching.
As for the price, well, the price for what I can only call a badly constructed board game is a staggering £25.00, which when you see what you get will bring tears to your eyes before to long.
I have always had mixed feelings about the TV show Deal or No Deal hosted by Noel Edmonds. I have watched it a few times but do find it irritating and not all that exciting considering they try to really build the excitement with calls to the banker to add to the tension. This is the board game based on the TV show which the whole family can play. Now, if you don't like the TV programme then you still may enjoy this as I think the board game is a bit better as you don't have to sit through the annoying Noel Edmonds banter in it. Having said that Deal or No Deal has been running for over two years now and is hugely successful which is no doubt why they released this game.
In the board game you are given 22 small red cardboard boxes to use and bits of cardboard with 1p to £250,000 written on them. You must put all these bits of cards, one into each box and them mix them up so you don't know which is in which one. The next thing you have to do is pick out five boxes and type the amounts into the electronic telephone. The phone rings and on the electronic screen is displayed a money amount. You have to then decide whether to sell your box for this amount on the screen or carry on and keep selecting boxes. If you make it to the end they you win the amount in the original box selected.
It's not a bad game and follows the format of the programme somewhat. My only reservation is that it's not really a very interactive game for more than 1 player as you find the others just watching as you have a go at winning the money and then another person has a go. It's £19.99 and perhaps if it was a bit cheaper of you could find it cheaper it might be more worth buying.
Overall, not the worst board game in the world if you can find it cheaply and can be fun to play...
Channel 4's teatime gameshow 'Deal Or No Deal' is still a hugely popular show four years after it was first aired. The game, hosted by Noel Edmonds, involves the use of twenty two sealed boxes and the opponent of a mystery 'banker' who only communicates through Edmonds via telephone. A contestant choses one box as their own. Inside every sealed box is a card containing a monetary amount ranging from 1p to £250,000. The contestant randomly choses the other boxes to open aiming to find boxes with the lowest monetary amounts. The banker then offers the contestant a payment 'deal' (to buy the contestant's box) according to his best guess of what monetary amount is in the contestants box. The contestant is judged to have won the game when he accepts a deal which turns out to be more than the monetary amount in his box or has an amount in his box that is more than the banker's highest offer.
The game has been manufactured as a book, electronic game, an interactive DVD, as a nintendo game and as this more basic board game. Created by company Drumond Park this set includes a large playing board, electronic battery operated telephone, playing cards, score sheets, instructions and boxes.
The set up of the game takes a long time as you have to assemble each of the twenty two boxes (with their lids) before playing. It is excrutiating work and very fiddley. I suggest you attemp this task as a family or group as it takes a long time to do. There are also lots of cards that need to be torn out of larger cardboard strips and each cards printed with monetary amounts that need to be placed inside the boxes. Finally you need to put batteries into the electronic phone. It requires 3 AA size batteries. You will need a cross-shaped screwdriver to open the battery compartment.
Once this is all assembled you will need a large playing space. The playing board is approximately 27 inches wide and 18 inches long so you will need a big table area.
How to place the boxes and playing cards on the board is explained in simple terms in the instruction manual. The board is actually marked out very simply too with marked illustrations of where to place the twenty two closed boxes, the telephone and your chosen box.
The game can be played by 2-6 players. The score sheets have a space where each player's name can be written down and their scores recorded. I have played this with up to four people and find the dynamics of this amount of people to work better than the minimum amount of 2 people.
The game is very similar to the television version and should be simple to learn the rules if you are familiar with the gameshow format. How this differs is that one player choses a box. The instructions state that this should always be the youngest player but I have found that if you play with the same group of people each time this becomes unfair so in my rules all players take turns at choosing the box. Then each of the other players chose to open one of the other boxes. They do this in turn until it is time for the banker to make a payment offer for the main box (this is after five boxes are opened initially then after every three boxes).
When the boxes are opened the monetary amount on the card inside should be obscured with a card from the illustration on the mian board. It should also be entered into the telephone via the keypad. One player should be assigned the task of keying in the amounts. The telephone then rings and an offer of payment will flash into the digital screen on the front of the telephone. Each player decides whether to deal or no deal. This continues until the end of the game. The player who dealed at the highest amount wins that game. If a player chooses not to deal they must find their box is worth more than the last remaining box at the end of the game. However, it is still the person who dealt at the most money who wins. Players can choose to play up to six seperate games and at the end of all games the player with the highest monetary total is the overall winner.
This game requires no mental skill or concentration and as such is suitable for younger players. The company actually states this is for ages 8 and above but mature children below this age could probably play too as long as they have help with the mathematics required at the end of the game.
There are a lots of things about the game that I find problematic. Firstly, the host's voice on the telephone is lack lustre and robotic. I was hoping it would be Noel Edmond's sparkling voice not some Mr Nobody! The voice lacks any drama needed to infuse excitement into the game.
Another problem includes the battery operated phone. Mine has malfunctioned in the middle of a game - displaying an error sign. It has also ran out of power mid-game. To rectify an error message you have to turn the phone off then switch it on again, effectively starting the whole game again. When this has happened to me the prospect of beginning another game has been so tiresome that the whole game has just been abandoned. The electronic display also flashes the banker's offer way too quickly and then the text vanishes. I have frequently had times when I or a fellow player wanted to deal but couldn't recall the exact amount offered!
Another problem is the boxes. After assembling the boxes they are more difficult to store. They also can lose their shape or crease. Unless you change the money cards inside each box it becomes possible to recognise the boxes and remember what amount is inside them. Having to juggle the cards around before each game becomes very tiresome and long-winded.
It can also get pretty tiresome having to re-fit the lids of the boxes after the completion of each game. I and my fellow players have always gotten bored after three games and have never been able to last until six. The mere act of having to open each box becomes a little tedious after a while. The instruction booklet says that each player should open their chosen box as 'drmatically as they choose'. Therefore the game relies on your own hype and acting skills to be exciting. If you are playing with a quiet, reserved person then the game might feel a little weary and slow.
Although I find the television gameshow very exciting this board game ultimately fails to capture the meaning and high-drama that makes the show so successful. A good idea in theory but a little dull in practice.
Deal or No Deal board Game
I was given this board game as a present (for some reason my mum has it in her head that I really like deal or no deal and I don't like to upset her)
If you haven't ever watched deal or no deal the idea of the game is that there are 22 boxes with amounts from 1p to 250k in them. You pick one with out knowing what's in side. Then you open boxes hoping to get rid of the ones with low amounts in every few boxes the banker will phone and offer you a certain amount of money to buy your box off you. He is hoping to buy it for less and you either want to sell you box for the most amount of money or keep going to the end and have the amount of money in you box.
The game is called deal or no deal because you say either deal or no deal to the bankers offer.
When I first open the box I was a bit dismayed as it just looked like a box of card board. After getting all the pieces out I realised I has to make all 22 boxes, and oh my good that was such fun.
After I had spend nearly an hour butting boxes together it was time to play the game.
I chose a box and then the fun began, the banker is a electronic phone that whenever you open a box you type in the amount in the phone and at certain points it will ring and display an offer and you have to deal or no deal.
I really cant stand this game found it so boring the boxes where hard to open and it was just not fun and your sort of felt like you where playing the game by your self.
One to leave on the shop shelf
We were given this board game for christmas - this seems to be the only time we ever have for playing games.
We couldn't get started immediately as you have to make all the boxes up out of cardboard yourself. This was a bit fiddly but they were quite well made so they were quite easy to make up. There were also a couple of spares so if you do have any accidents you can replce them.
I'm afarid I am probably the one person in the country who has never seen a full episode of Deall or no deal - but I have seen a few bits of episodes and to be honest the concept isn't that difficult, you open boxes in turn and decisde whether you want to risk carrying on in the hope that the final boxes will contain high value amounts.
The banker is provided in the form of an electronic phone whci displays a figure at certain points withen the game, players then decisde if they wish to take the bankers off and have a set time withen which to decide.
A bad point for the game is that the figure is not re-displayed at the end of the time limit so you need to make sure you make a note of it otherwise if someone takes the banker up on the offer you may have forgetten the correct amount.
You carry on playing until there are only 2 boxes left or until everyone has accepted the bankers offer. The winner is the one with the most money over a certain number of games.
I am sure that everyone has watched Deal or No Deal at least once but just in case. . .
It is a game show presented by Noel Edmonds in which contestants have to beat the banker and take home a jackpot prize. The idea is that each person has a box and the contestant goes through the game opening boxes to reveal low amounts of money which makes the banker think the box they have contains a large amount. The banker then offers to buy the box and you can deal or no deal until you are happy with the amount you take home.
The board game version is just like the television show.
It comes complete with an electronic banker, the playing board, 22 boxes containing cash amounts and markers to mark off values that have been revealed.
The game is played by one player at a time but several players can play one after each other, competing to see who can win the most money.
You begin the game by selecting a box to be your box.
Then you play round after round of opening boxes hoping to reveal small amounts of money.
After each amount you reveal you mark off the board so you know it has gone.
You enter the amount revelaed into the electronic banker which looks like a telephone and then at the end of each round it will make you an offer to buy the box that you chose at the start. You have the choice to accept or decline this offer.
If you decline you play on to the next round hoping to increase the banker offer.
Once you are offered an amount you are happy with you then deal and that's the amount you go home with.
It is a very good game and lots of fun to play. The electronic banker is a very nice feature as it rings and lights up so it makes the game more enjoyable.
The main thing I was disapointed with was the boxes containing the cash amount. You ahve to assemble them yourself which is fiddly and as they are made from cardboard they are quite flimsy and I can't see them lasting very long.
For the price of the game I would have expected them to be a little more sturdy, perhaps made from plastic instead but it's still a good game regardless.
The actual gameplay is a cinch for anybody whos ever watched the TV show which of course means that Deal or No Deal is a game that all the family can play. You start by laying the 22 money tokens, representing the prize amounts ranging from 1p to £250,000, face down on the table, mixing them up, and placing them at random into the 22 red boxes (no peeking!). Each player is given four answer cards (Deal, No Deal, Swap and Stick), and the Bankers electronic phone is placed on the game board. The youngest (or oldest, if you prefer youre in charge!) player starts by selecting one box and places it onto the white table next to the scoreboard. This is the prize box everybodys playing for.