Ah the donut. A beautiful ring of delicious dough and sugar. The donut is a miraculous dessert that comes in so many flavors. Will we find Go Nuts for Donuts from GameWright Games just as irresistible or will this cute filler game leave a bad taste in your mouth like an old jelly filled donut?
It will be easy to look at the cards from Go Nuts for Donuts and make comparisons to Sushi Go, another game in the GameWright library. These two games may have a similar look but the gameplay is very different. The cards are colorful and appeal to a wide age range. The donuts have cute little faces and the expression on the Boston Cream donut gets me every time.
The game is set up by using numbered markers that are set out in the middle of the table. You’ll set out one marker more than the number of players. For example, in a 3 player game 4 markers will be set out. Each round donuts will be drawn from the donut deck and placed under each marker. Players have to choose a card that matches one of the numbers on the table. This card is kept secret till everyone is ready to reveal their card.
Simultaneously players reveal what donut they chose from the middle of the table. If two people selected the same donut then neither player gets one. If you were the only one to pick a specific donut, then you get that tasty pastry and take the action that is available on the card. Some donuts don’t have actions and they just give you victory points that get counted at the end of the game. The player with the most points when the stack of donuts runs out wins the game.
Pastries for Everyone!
The game is pretty simple and very easy to teach. This is what makes the game such a great pick for a table of kids and adults. There is some light strategy such as picking the donut that allows you to discard or give cards with negative points to another player. Players can also get collections of donut holes, jelly filled donuts or Boston cream donuts that give you more points for each card of the same type.
Players who are paying attention will be able to watch for cards that others are trying to get and forcing them to leave a round empty handed. There’s enough happening in Go Nuts for Donuts that players can change up their strategies from game to game.
The game adapts really well at different player counts. As you add more players, you add some additional cards that have different abilities. These cards have some cool effects and add variety to Go Nuts for Donuts.
I have to admit that the first time playing Go Nuts for Donuts was miserable and I left the game feeling like something was broken. We played with 5 players and I believe I scored less than 3 points the entire game. Each time I chose a donut, someone else at the table picked the same number. Toward the end I even focused on picking the less desirable pastries and still came up empty handed because someone else picked the same number as I did.
Luckily, this story has a happy ending. I’ve played the game about half a dozen times since then and have really enjoyed the game. It can be incredibly frustrating when two players at the table have the same ideas and you watch as other players stack their tasty donuts and you’re left with crumbs. At the end of the day, this is a human element and not a fault of the game.
The game is well balanced with the different card abilities and collectable sets. No matter how many players are at the table, there will always be one extra donut available on the table. I can’t really knock the game for two people having the same strategy.
The game plays in about 20 minutes and has become the filler game that our 9 year old has asked to play the most since Christmas. With our family of 5, Go Nuts for Donuts is a casual game scratches that “after dinner” gaming itch for both the kids and adults.
You can grab a copy of Go Nuts for Donuts from your local game store, Target, Barnes & Noble or online on Amazon.
- Fun, fast and colorful game appeals to a wide age range
- Lots of card abilities with different strategies
- Supports up to 6 players really well
- The game suffers when players go after the same cards
- Not very fun with only 2 players