Food Fighters was Kickstarter in 2015, but unfortunately, I hadn’t heard about it until 2016. Thankfully, you can now order it through their site and on the usual board game websites like Miniature Market.
Based on the artwork alone, it looked like a game I would enjoy playing. Once I saw a plethora of my Instagram and Twitter friends playing it, I knew I had to get a copy for myself. When I saw how reasonably-priced not only the base game, but also both expansions are, I ordered everything at once.
Running through the game manual didn’t take long and I had everything set up to play. Essentially, you’re playing against one other person to try to eliminate 3 of the same card types. In a meat versus vegetables game, these cards can be chicken, steak, bacon, onion, broccoli, or cabbage. You can only attack enemy cards at are directly in front of or diagonal to your cards and they have to be thinking about that enemy type. In other words, a chicken leg thinking about an onion can only attack an onion directly in front of or diagonal to itself. An attack only counts if you roll a green splat icon, which are found on the dice.
In addition to attacking, you can also the roll two white dice to obtain beans, which are the currency in the game. The beans allow you to buy pantry items like spoon spears, frying pans that allow you to attach any food type, an extra bonus die to roll, cracker shields, or bonus cards specific to your food type. Once a bonus item is used, it gets returned to the pantry to be able to be purchased on a later turn. Exceptions to this rule would be a bonus card like “Bean Boost” that once purchased, stays in the player’s hand for the rest of the game or a bonus card like “Meat Shield” that is removed from the game once it’s used. Cracker shields are also one-time use, so use them wisely.
Once you’ve read through the rules and see the limited options you have (roll for beans, attack, swap card placement, buy a pantry item), it’s understandable to think that this will be a very quick game that’s all luck since it’s determine by dice rolls. However, as the game progresses, you realize the amount of strategy involved of trying to protect 3 of one character type from being attacked. This can be done by buying cracker shields, swapping character placement, purchasing bonus cards, etc. Once my wife had quickly eliminated 2 of my bacon cards, it became a strategic chess game of protecting my last piece of bacon.
Since initial card placement is randomized, you’ll probably never play the same game twice. However, you can also pick up the S’mores and Grains expansion packs, which add characters like marshmallow, graham cracker, chocolate, croissant, muffin, and doughnut. These also come with their own bonus power cards that will change gameplay.
To even add more variety, both the base game and expansions come with static-cling thought bubbles to place on the cards so you can play S’mores vs. Vegetables, Meat vs. Grains, Grains vs. S’Mores, Meat vs. S’mores, etc., etc.
One of my favorite parts is that both expansions fit neatly into the base game box, which makes it easy to travel if you want to take it to a friend’s house or on vacation to play in a hotel room. The age group is probably correct with being around the age of 8+. The artwork looks cute enough to be appealing to younger children, but the sheer amount of strategy and gameplay might be a bit much for kids younger than 8.
Overall, I am very pleased with this purchase and wish I would have had known about the Kickstarter so I could have been playing it sooner. Definitely check this one out!