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Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy

As you might guess from the jokey title and cartoon artwork from JocArt, Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy is aimed primarily at primary school age children but it's a fun game that all the family can enjoy.

Designed by Andreas Wilde and published by Lucky Duck, Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy is a fully cooperative card game played using a companion app. It's actually an updated more child-friendly version of a game previously published by Devir and Igiari as Soviet Kitchen Unleashed. Whereas in the earlier game, players were feeding Soviet infantrymen, in Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy players are here trying to satisfy the appetites of cute furry monsters. Instead poisons and radioactive waste, in this game it's vitamins that the monsters are trying to avoid: you'll lose if you feed the monsters too many cards showing vitamins.

Once you've bought the game, you'll need to download the free companion app to run on your smartphone or tablet. When you run the app, it'll teach the game so younger players won't need much help learning how to play. The app offers different options for playing the game but it's best to play in Story mode, where your play will progressively unlock areas to 'explore' - adding more card decks and gradually upping the difficulty. You can also set the difficulty level at the outset (easy/medium/hard).

The 2-4 players each have a hand of six cards showing foodstuffs or other objects - initially those found in 'Grandpa's Attic' (players' starting deck). The cards each display a different colour or shade, and on the reverse of each card is a QR code, which you hold up to your phone/tablet camera to scan so that the app knows what card you've played. Your collective objective each round is for the cards you play to be as close an overall match as you can get to the colour of the monster. If, for example, the monster is dark green then any of the green cards are likely to be a good match (tho' watch out - many may also bear the vitamin icon) but if another player has played a blue card, then a yellow could be the right play to bring the 'average' to the target colour. The intention is that you play the game without showing or sharing your hands, so communication has to be subtle - tho' you may perhaps choose to relax that requirement with the very youngest players.

The app tells you how successful you've all been in satisfying the monster's specific appetite, and it rewards you with stars, so players have a collective sense of achievement and feel they are progressing as they play.

It may all sound quite silly but it actually makes for a remarkably entertaining game, and one that the whole family can engage with: it's not just a game for small children! The game offers more shades than a Dulux colour chart so there's the potential for an educational element too as older players can use Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy to teach colour words.

You'll probably want to avoid breaking out this game with any family members who suffer from colour blindness but, for everyone else, Yummy Yummy Monster Tummy will prove a lot of fun for young and old alike.

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