Who doesn't love adorable puppies artwork?
|Alien Puppies Card Game (2020)
|Piotr Hoang, Kim Anh
Spacetopia Pte Ltd
Our pets have unusual tendencies such as cat chasing or dog barking at nothing. We often write this off as our pets being weird or maybe even ghost, but what if it is some alien tendency our human brains are simply too primitive to understand. Perhaps when we are not home, they find themselves getting into a little bit of everything such as using our computers for covert affairs or trading stocks, throwing parties, or traveling thanks to alien technology.
Alien Puppies provide us a small glimpse into our pet's second lives we were never aware of. While some of our puppies may just be traditional earth puppies with secret lives, others are truly alien creatures that look very similar to our earth dogs and possess unique gifts. Perhaps, Earth dogs are distant descendants of these alien puppies. Your goal in this game is to collect three alien puppies before your opponents are able to. The game mechanics are pretty straight forward with play and then draw mechanics.
The game comes in a box a bit bigger than actually needed; it could have easily been about half the size that it is. None the less, the box is very sturdy and displays some cute artwork all around. The back of the box is pretty simple with a very brief teaser of what the game is about.
The game includes:
- 77 Cards: The card cards are broken into 4 main types: Alien Puppies (12), Earth Puppies (22), Actions (42), and a single Barkmageddon card.
The main difference between the Alien Puppies vs the Earth Puppies is the Alien Puppies have powers all on their own (as shown at the bottom of their card), which the Earth Puppies do not possess. Earth Puppies are resourceful when the team up and have tricks of their own. Action cards are straight forward and provide the details for how they are used. Barkmageddon is a dreaded card players want to avoid drawing, and if they are unfortunate to face off against it, hopefully they have the cards to survive.
The cards are a nice thick cardstock with a linen. They feel very nice to hold and don't slide off the deck without a bit of force. The artwork is very diverse on each Puppy Card. Only the action cards have repeat artwork; the rest of the cards are unique. Each puppy has a very distinct personality that really fits the type of card they represent. Agent Bandog looks like a sci-fi soldier, Insta Terrier looks like what you would expect a dog addicted to social media to be, and Travel Newfoundland looks like a puppy explorer. I really enjoyed looking through all of the artwork.
The goal of Alien Puppies is simple: be the first player to have three Alien Puppies in your Backyard. It won't be easy as other players will use their cards to force you to discard (or steal) your Alien Puppies. Worse yet; somewhere in the deck is the dreaded Barkmageddeon card that will ruin your best laid plans or force you out of the game.
- Shuffle all of the cards and deal five cards to each player.
- Place the remaining cards into the center of the table.
Players should check their hand to see if they were dealt the Barkmageddeon card. If so, a replacement card needs to be provided to that player, and the Barkmageddeon card should be shuffled back into the deck.
Select a first player and begin!
Player turns are very straight forward with 2 phases (Action and Draw in that order):
- Action (optional)
- Put one alien puppies into your backyard and perform the listed action.
- Play an action card to the discard pile and perform the listed action.
- Play any two Earth Puppies to perform an Earth Puppy Combo (or play any four Earth Puppies for two Earth Puppy Combos):
- Force another player to discard one of their Alien Puppies from their Backyard.
- Take a single card from the discard pile.
- Draw (required)
- Draw a single card from the deck.
If a player ever draws the Barkmageddon card (regardless of how they drew the card), they must reveal it immediately and need protect themselves from it in one of the follow two ways:
- Discard three cards from their hand (player's choice)
- Discard one Alien Puppy from their Backyard.
If you are able to protect yourself from this fate, you must place the Barkmageddon card back into the deck anywhere you chose. You can make this publicly known or can hide the deck inserting the card into the deck (even placing it on top).
If a player is ever unable to protect themselves, they are knock out of the game. The Barkmageddon is discarded and won't impact other players.
As soon as a player is able to successfully finish their turn with three Alien Puppies in their Backyard, the game ends with that player being the winner! Alternately, if the draw deck runs out and players run out of cards to play, the player with the most Alien Puppies is the winner. There is no listed tie breaker so play again.
Two Player Variant
When playing with just two players, the end game is triggered by having five Alien Puppies in your Backyard. Beyond that, the game is played as usual.
The game is very simple and easily teachable to most children. It is certainly not targeted towards most adults as the gameplay is not too difficult, but with the right group, there could be a lot of strategy. The quality of the cards are very impressive again for a smaller card game. My favorite part of the game is certainly the adorable puppy art in the game; the art is very good and diverse for a simple card game.
So while I can't say this game will be for everyone, I can certainly see a lot of people enjoying it for what it is. I certainly enjoyed it during the games we played. I will likely show this off occasionally at our Extra Life events when we expect to have more children present. If this looks like a cute game you would enjoy, be sure to check out the publishers page for places to buy the game.
We received the product in order to write an honest review; all reviews reflect the honest opinions of the writer.