Hey you guys! One of the fondest memories I have of the 80’s is all of the wonderful feelgood movies that were made in that era. I once wrote a post about some of my Childhood Movies and it will probably come as no surprise that The Goonies is one of those films. Directed by Richard Donner, the man who also made the original Superman movie and of course the awesome Lethal Weapon films, it’s just one of those really great adventure movies that sadly these days hardly ever get made anymore. It tells the story of a group of kids that call themselves the Goonies, who are forced to leave the house they grew up in. However when one of them finds an ancient treasure map, that supposedly tells the location of pirate legend One Eyed Willy’s treasure, the race is on to find it and maybe save their house in the process. Of course things are never easy as a bunch of thugs called the Frattelis set off after them, determined to also find the treasure and keep it for themselves. It has some great performances all around, and it’s fun to see a very young Josh Brolin in this movie, who would later go on to star in The Avengers as the villain Thanos. Talks of a sequel to the film have been going on for years, but is one of those projects that in all likelyhood is never going to happen. But now we have the next best thing: The Goonies Adventure Cardgame! Or do we? Let’s find out if this game is worth it!
This being a cardgame, it will probably not be too much of a shock to you that this game contains a bunch of cards. In total the game comes with 110 cards, representing the various items, locations, encounters and challenges that the players will face during the game. And of course all of The Goonies themselves are included as well, with each player able to play one of them. The cards are of a pretty decent quality and a lot of them contain stills with scenes from the movie. Also included are a bunch of cardboard tiles, and the awesome looking Goonies meeple, that you will use during the game to mark which location you are at. (More on that down below). Another thing that I am very happy with is that the game comes with a box insert where you can easily store your components. This might not seem important, but I have various games where once I opened the box, I had the biggest problems fitting all of the stuff back inside. Last but not least we have a 14 page rules booklet, that does a great job of explaining the rules. Containing various examples of play, and a lot of pictures, I had no trouble whatsoever in learning the game. All in all it’s a nice box, with quality components, so no complaints at all on that front!
In The Goonies Adventure card game, just like in the movie, you are racing against time to find One Eyed Willy’s treasure. At the start of the game, five locations from the film are set up, with each location having a piece of the treasure. If you are able to extract all five treasures before you are overcome by obstacles or the Fratellis you win the game. Obstacles you say? Well yes. Before you can explore a location you will have to overcome the obstacle cards. Each location gets a bunch of them, and more are added each turn. As soon as a location has more than five obstacles it’s game over. At the start of the game each player chooses the Goonie who he/she wishes to play, and gets dealt a hand of item cards. Each Goonie has their own special ability, and in this way also adds variety to the game. The game is played in a series of turns. During a turn players get the chance to take four actions. Actions include moving around the five locations, overcoming the obstacles, exploring a location to find a piece of treasure to name a few. Each obstacle includes a picture of the item card you need to have in order to get rid of it. For example, in the picture below, in row number 2, the top card below the the Chester Copperpot location has a musical note on it’s left hand corner. If you happen to have an item card with a musical note on it in your hand, that’s the one you need in order to overcome the obstacle.
Some obstacles require more than one item to overcome, and players can work together to form the combination they need. Once a location is cleared of obstacles, players can try to explore it. This is done by turning over one of the three face down tiles above the location. Some of these are boobytraps, and only one of them is actually a piece of treasure. After four actions have been taken (or less if you are not able to do any more actions), players discard all the items they used, and then draw a new hand. However this also means that new obstacles are drawn, sometimes if you are unlucky more than one, or even more horrible an encounter. An encounter card is usually bad news. They can add even more obstacles or be a Fratteli that makes life more miserable for the players. Even worse, if ever there are ever five of these lastnamed cards in play, it’s game over. So as you can see there are more ways to lose than win, which brings us to the next item on the agenda, the difficulty of the game.
As mentioned the rulebook does a great job in teaching you the game, and after spending as few as 20 minutes with it, I was able to play my first game. One of the hardest things to do in this game is managing the obstacles. Before you know it, these can fill up really fast, and remember once there are five of them below a location it’s game over. Sometimes that can happen really quickly if you are unlucky enough to draw obstacles that keep adding new ones. There is luck involved in this game, there is no denying that, but at the same time it’s also important to keep paying attention to the cards you have in your hand and deciding where to go next. When you are playing the game with more people, it becomes important to really work together in order to overcome the obstacles. In the solo version you have to keep your wits about you, and it’s easy to sometimes overlook certain things. All in all though this isn’t a difficult game by any means, and there is a good balance between winning and losing.
This is by no means a very heavy game that you can play for hours on end. But that is certainly not a bad thing. It’s always nice to have a few games in your collection that you can bring to the table every once in a while, play for two or three rounds and then call it quits. There is enough variety in the game to keep things interesting, and you are for example able to add cards that make the game more difficult. This gives it some great replay value. The nostalgia factor is certainly another thing that makes this an interesting buy, though admittedly I do have to say that the game could have done more to give it that real Goonies flavour so to speak. All in all though this is a fun game, for people who like cardgames, are 80’s fans and maybe want to relive a few childhood memories. Goonies never say die!
I give The Goonies Adventure card game a 8 out of 10 score.