I am part of the Blogger Board Game Club run by Playtime PR. Each month 50 bloggers are sent a new (or new-ish, or at least new to them) board game to play and put to the test. This month we were sent Jungle Speed, a game none of us had heard of before.
Jungle Speed is a card game created by Thomas Vuarchex and Pierric Yakovenko in 1991 and is produced by Asmodee Editions. It is played with a pack non-standard playing cards. It’s a bit like Snap but more complicated.
The box contains a deck of cards, a wooden totem and a bag to store the game in. Because there are so few elements and they can be packed away in a small bag; making it an ideal travel game. Jungle Speed is suitable for 2 or more players aged 7+. Each game should take around 15 minutes to play. It has an RRP of £14.99 and is available from a range of retailers including Amazon.
The game revolves around matching cards with identical symbols. Just like Snap, but the pack of cards all have different symbols on, some of which look similar but they’re not. Because some of the symbols are so similar it does make the game more challenging and players are more likely to snatch the totem at the wrong time meaning they have to pick up extra cards.
To play, you shuffle the cards and deal them out equally to each player face down. Players take turns playing the top card from their stacks in a clockwise direction. There is a wooden cylinder called a Totem in the middle of the table, when a player plays a card that matches the symbol of another player’s top card, the two players must ‘duel’ to grab the totem. The loser of the duel takes both players played cards, as well as any cards under the totem and so it continues until the winner doesn’t have any cards left.
I explained the rules to the boys, one of which said it sounded boring, so he walked off and didn’t want anything more to do with it. So I played the game with the remaining 7 year old boy. He’s bright and he picked up the rules quickly enough. We played the game several times just to make sure we weren’t missing anything. Maybe we were, but neither of us had anything particularly good to say about Jungle Speed.
I wonder if it is better and more exciting played with more players. There wasn’t much action other than turning cards and even when we matched a card, snatched the totem and gave away our discarded cards to the loser, it wasn’t as much fun as a simple game of snap.
After we’d packed the game away I read some reviews on Amazon, most of which were absolutely glowing. I’ve re-read the rules a couple of times since, just to check we were playing it correctly and we were. Jungle Speed is not for us. It’s not exciting, it’s not especially engaging and it lacked the speed and fun of a simple game of snap. Sorry Jungle Speed, we didn’t really like you.
We were sent the Jungle Speed board game for review purposes. All images and opinions are our own. This blog post contains affiliate links.