We’re just around the corner from this year’s GAMA Expo. It’s a game industry trade show where companies and individuals from various corners of the tabletop game industry converge for business purposes. We featured a lot of content from the event on our TikTok and Instagram channels including videos of the evenings’ game nights. That’s one of the key places we were able to sit down and play some of the games scheduled to release throughout 2022. One of those games was Walkie Talkie, a cooperative card game from Devir Games.
Before I explain anything about the game, I want to point out the legend on the back of the box. It says it’s for 2-8 players ages 8+ with game duration approximately 1-4 minutes. That’s not a typo. The game is literally only 1-4 minutes long. This is ideal for killing time between other games or if you just want something as a simple family bonding activity.
In order to play, you’ll need a timer such as a phone or smart watch. At the beginning of each game, you’ll set it for 30 seconds per player. Like Flip City, the cards in Walkie Talkie are double-sided with one side displaying letters and the other colors. Shuffle the deck then divide in two. Flip one of the stacks over, combine and re-shuffle. Take the first two cards and create two discard piles with one showing a color and the second the letter side. Without flipping the sides, deal six cards to each player. Everyone will have a hand comprised of a mix of colors and letters. Letter cards must be played on the letter card pile and color cards must be played on their respective stack.
Keeping in mind the VERY limited amount of time for this game, everyone will play simultaneously until either all players are out of cards or the time has expired. On your turn (which is ALWAYS), you must take the following two steps: Play a card from your hand to the top of one of the two piles then say a valid code out loud.
So what cards can you play and what is a valid code? Well, that’s what makes this game interesting. You have to say a word that starts with the letter on the card at the top of the letter pile that relates to the color visible on the top of the color stack. You can say pretty much anything except the color name when the related letter card (like “B”) and color card (like “Blue”) match up. While Hues and Cues is a laid-back, casual party game, Walkie Talkie is quite the opposite requiring quick thinking and fast gameplay. That timer goes really fast!
As you’re trying to figure out cards from your hand that align with the current letter or color, your teammates are simultaneously doing the same thing. That means the stacks are constantly changing and you have to keep coming up with solutions to shed the cards from your hand. A player can yell “Roger” or “Over” during gameplay to make changes to all players hands. Hear “Roger” and flip your hand over to reveal the colors and letters on the “back”. While “Over” requires all players to pass their hand to the person on their left. As a reminder, the timer is (quickly) ticking away and the goal is to get rid of all your cards. And you’re working together so if you get stuck, don’t be afraid to let your teammates help out.
When the game is over, count the stars (rulebook calls them asterisks) displayed on all the cards played to determine the base score then deduct one point for each card remaining in any player’s hand. You can keep track of the score or just shuffle up and go again. No quick thinking required to figure out where to get a copy of Walkie Talkie. Ask your local game store if they have copies or snag one online from Devir Games’ website or on Amazon. Check out their Facebook and Twitter channels to see what other games they offer that you could play before or after this quick card game.
Do you have a knack for thinking fast?