Beware of Metalvore Sharks—A Review of Get Bit!

4 12 2012

getbitFiller: A short game, played at the beginning or end of a game session—or while waiting for other people to finish their game.

Get Bit is an excellent filler game: It’s short, the rules are easy, and it’s not too mentally taxing.

The original game is five years old, but it’s been reprinted recently by Mayday Games. The game can accommodate 4-6 players, and plays in about 15 minutes. Each player gets a set of colored cards numbering 1-7, and a matching cute plastic robot with removable limbs. The original edition of the game only came with a shark card, but the new one also comes with an actual plastic shark—but aesthetics is the only difference. As soon as my kids saw the robots and shark , they were begging me to play.

bitYou line the swimmers (robots) up in any order. Then each person picks one of their cards in hand and lays it on the table facedown. Once everyone has chosen, players all reveal their cards.

If two or more people choose the same number, their swimmer stays in the same position. All other players move their swimmer to the front of the line—going from lowest number to highest shown.

Then the shark gets to chomp a swimmer. Whichever one is at the end gets a limb ripped off—if it’s the last limb, that player is out of the game. Otherwise, the owner of the bitten robot gets all of his or her cards back. (If a player only has two cards left in hand, that person also gets all cards back.) Discards are left on the table, so you know exactly which cards are left in people’s hands. This creates an interesting tension as you try to figure out which of that person’s two cards they’re going to play. If you guess wrong, you might get chomped.

There’s also a variant where you play discards facedown, so people have to remember what’s been played, but I think that would slow the game down way too much. If you want a longer game—maybe you don’t want to use this as a filler game, but as the main game with a group of nongamers—you can lengthen it by removing half of the arm or leg when a swimmer gets bitten. (The legs and arms are articulated, so you can take the whole arm off, or just off at the elbow.)

You keep going until there are only two swimmers left; the player in the front wins!

Other than the slightly rude name, there’s nothing questionable about this game. Yes, robots get their limbs ripped off by a crazed, metalvore shark, but it’s very cartoony. As far as ages go, this one is probably for 8 and up. You could maybe go a little younger but they’d need some help determining which card to play.

Get Bit! is a terrific family game, and it would be a great game to play with your youth group. It’s super fast, super easy, and if you don’t mind some super randomness, it’s super fun. Thanks for reading!

(Theology of Games would like to thank Mayday Games for providing us with a review copy of Get Bit.)

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