Updated: Feb 8, 2021
We've played other games revolving around the theme of headgear (for example, Thundergryph's Hats) so we weren't fazed by the prospect of another. Then we spotted that this new title from Runnaman Games is Bandada rather than Bandana. Evidently, that's Spanish for Flock and this is a game about collecting birds rather than headbands. And with the continuing success of Wingspan (Stonemaier), that sounds like an even more winning theme!
Designed and illustrated by Chase Estep, Bandada is an addictive solitaire or competitive two-player game where players are drafting bird cards from those displayed, using them to manipulate the dice pool (notionally, the food supply for the birds) and scoring points according to their cards' criteria. It's played using 12 regular six-sided dice in three colours, and a microgame deck of 12 bird cards. The rules are straightforward, so the game is easy to play, but the dice manipulation keeps players hooked and coming back for more. It plays through in around 15 minutes but you'll almost certainly want to go again immediately to better your score.
And when you do find that you are dab hand at dice manipulation and have mastered the basic game, Bandada offers several optional extras, including hidden objective cards that give end-game scoring boosts and single-use powers to change a die or swap a card. The solo game can be played against an AI or as an 'adventure' campaign across several games, each with their own unique scoring objective.
Bandada delivers a lot of play value in its compact box. We expect people to Flock to back this game when it launches on Kickstarter. Click here so you can catch the campaign.