Friday the 13th: Horror at Camp Crystal Lake Review

Growing up in the 80’s means that Jason Voorhees went hand-in-hand with the Halloween season. I remember wanting to don the infamous hockey mask when I was a kid. Friday the 13th is a movie that has been around for more than 40 years and is known by both kids and adults.

This year The OP has taken the Friday the 13th license and reskinned one of our favorite press-your-luck games. Friday the 13th: Horror at Camp Crystal Lake is a reimplementation of the game Quartz (later released as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: A Gemstone Mining Game) which was originally about mining gems. This slasher theme fits the press-your-luck genre suprisingly well.

Friday the 13th player board

Outrun the Killer

In Friday the 13th, 3 to 6 players are trying to collect supplies over the course of 5 nights (rounds). Players begin the game with 5 Fear Cards that have some “take that” elements and Defense Fear Cards that can counteract cards played against you. On your turn you can pull a resource out the Camp Bag that is being passed around the table. This bag contains 6 different supplies and Jason tokens. If you don’t want to pull from the bag, you can play a Fear Card or you can chose to head back to your cabin with the supplies you’ve gathered during the night.

It probably goes without saying, it’s a bad thing to pull Jason tokens from the bag. These Jason tokens will force you to drop all your supplies and run for help if you get a second Jason tokens in a single round.

Friday the 13th supply tokens

Dipping your hand into the bag each time is a nerve-racking experience because you never know what you’re going to pull. Similar to a game like Quacks of Quedlinburg, knowing the odds of what’s in the bag does nothing for you when you pull Jason tokens over and over. This is where Fear Cards can be a huge asset. Some of these Fear Cards allow you to steal supplies, force another player to pull tokens on your behalf or pass a Jason token to another player.

The supplies in Friday the 13th all have different values and can be turned in at the end of the night for points. Bonuses are available for sets of supplies which can increase the value of other supplies being turned in. Bravery bonuses are given to any players that get back to the cabin safely. The game ends after 5 nights and the player with the most points wins the game.

Friday the 13th player hand

A Killer Game?

A press-your-luck game is a great fit for the Friday the 13th license. There’s a real tension as you dig into the bag of supplies. During each night, you have a Critical Supply goal in the middle of the table. The first player to collect the requested supplies and make it safely back to the cabin will be awarded a bonus. I really liked having this goal encouraging a player to end their night if they have the right set of supplies.

Friday the 13th main board

Just as you would expect, this game has lots of blood splatters on everything. This is the major reason for the 17+ age on the box. The Fear Cards have an aged look and the iconic Camp Crystal Lake sign sits in the middle of the table. While the gameplay of Friday the 13th was a hit for us, some of the components were really disappointing.

The bag containing all the supply tokens is a fantastic quality. The artwork and design of the player boards fit the theme well. The main board that keeps track of each night is made of really thin cardstock. During our unboxing for Friday the 13th, I was shocked to see that the supply and Jason tokens are plastic chips. They feel fantastic…until a supply sticker falls off.

Friday the 13th fear cards

Within the first couple plays we had a sticker fall off one of the tokens. It’s not a huge deal because the tokens are color coded. It’s just disappointing because I don’t have a lot of confidence that these stickers will hold up long term.

Friday the 13th: Horror at Camp Crystal Lake is a really fun treat for the Halloween season. The theme of the game works well and The OP made small changes to the original game that make sense with the IP. Friday the 13th has a limited print run so if you’re adding it to you game shelf, purchase it sooner than later.

Pick up your copy of Friday the 13th: Horror at Camp Crystal Lake at your local game store or on The OP webstore today.

Highs

  • Mechanics and theme are a solid fit
  • Hockey mask player boards are a great choice
  • Critical Supply goals are a nice touch
  • Supports up to 6 players

Lows

  • Disappointed in some of the components
  • Heavy dependence on luck