Playtime: 20-40 minutes
Re-Fused is a fast-paced, set collection card game simple enough for a five year old but with enough strategy to cause tension with your in-laws.
My objective for this game was to make something new with a familiar feel. I keep thinking about filler games we've all played hundreds of times and still enjoy with every generation of our family. Sounds lofty, but I don't dream small.
I tried to make the objective easy but novel, find the pieces of the images, put them together, collect the cards for points. Sweet, job done, I think. I haven't played a purely image based game anyway. Now, how is that a game instead of a weird jigsaw puzzle race?
In order to really make it a game, I set out to find mechanics that were familiar and then do something a little different in order to stand out from those filler games I know so well. All I came up with was drawing from the discard pile.
I wasn't sure at first, but early playtests showed that being able to draw from the discard pile keeps players focused and engaged at the same time that it adds strategy to every action you take during your turn. The playtests also revealed the need for some additional mechanics.
The action cards allow for some mischief, but they also help keep the game moving when an obstinate opponent refuses to relinquish the cards you want.
As I submit Re-Fused for your judgment, I hope that you find a game that feels fresh, yet familiar and, more important than anything else, I hope you find something that you can share with your family.