I hope I don’t get the Cat Queen now
I must admit I was a little skeptical about Sleeping Queens, as it looked very much a kid’s game, but it had been recommended (thanks, Sam!) and I’d seen some positive comments online, so why not give it a go? This comes from the Gamewright stable (along with one of our favourites, Loot) and was, apparently, designed by a six-year-old girl (amusing when the box says it’s for ages 8+). Actually, the game smacks of having been built from a standard playing card deck (or two) and then enhanced with some extra cards later.
So, you play kings to wake up queens and if you wake enough queens you win. Knights and potions can deprive an opponent of awake queens, but can be countered by dragons and magic wands respectively. Jesters have random effects and the rest of the deck is padded out by number cards which have no effect other than in helping with the randomness of the jesters. Except you can discard multiple number cards if you can make matching pairs or (and here is the educational bit) you can make 3 or more cards into an addition equation, for example, if you have a 2, a 3 and a 5 then 2+3=5, so you can discard them and draw replacement cards.
This whole maths thing is pretty pointless but, at the stage Miss B is at, she absolutely loved it and got a real sense of achievement when she figured out a sum. The rest of the game was pretty enjoyable too, helped along by the pictures on the cards. Sleeping Queens is good, but for me it falls into the “definitely a kids’ game” category as I can’t see many adults choosing to play it in the absence of children (as they might for, say, Ghost Party). That said, I’m happy playing it occasionally and Miss B loves it, so I expect we’ll be playing this quite a lot.
The verdict from Miss B. (aged nearly 5½): “Good. Just good.”
The game: Sleeping Queens (Gamewright), 2 to 5 players, aged 8+.