Monday , July 22 2024
Charty Party

Party Game Review: ‘Charty Party’ from Very Special Games

Charty Party from Very Special Games uses familiar party game mechanics in a clever way to make players feel smart while they snort with laughter. Card-pairing has been a method of amusement for decades with players making uncanny matches to give each other the giggles, whether over something inane or oh-so-true. Many games use this mechanic to match pictures and captions, nouns and descriptors, or words to fill in the blank. Charty Party offers a new direction, with line graphs where the x- and y-axes could be just about anything.

Gameplay in Charty Party is very straightforward, taking only seconds to learn. In fact, the instructions even offer “super quick” rules in a single paragraph. All players need to do is deal out orange y-axis cards and choose a judge for the round. The judge draws a chart card with a labeled x-axis, and it is up to the others to match one of their orange cards for the funniest pairing. Whoever makes the funniest play gets the chart card, and the game continues with a new judge until someone has collected enough chart cards to win.

Nerdiest Fun to be Had

The charts give Charty Party the twist of a party game for nerdy people. People who thrive on representational thinking will latch onto the higher-level cognitive play. Most of the charts are straightforward with lines that have a rise, decline, or severe peak. The trick is to determine what matches best with a line dropping on “time of day” after 1 PM or a hyperbolic curve in “age” bottoming out around “40” with limits approaching infinity on either side of “10” and “70.” The trick is to determine what matches best, such as “unbridled rage” or “time spent stalking your ex on Facebook.”

Charty Party offers yet another level of play, with the “extra special bonus round” cards. Rather than having labeled x-axes like the other chart cards, these cards challenge players to match two of their own cards, one for each axis. The rules are “as one goes up, the other also goes up,” making it a perfect opportunity to pair “ability to do simple math” and “legitimate fear of receiving a wedgie.” In the worst-case scenario, it can be a chance to burn frustrating cards that seem to have no match, pairing them in a bit for Dadaist humor.

How Low Can Players Go

Charty Party is a pairing party game for three or more players aged 15 and up. Some of the cards can be a bit mature, or “immature” depending on one’s definition, such as “dampness of underwear” or “time spent thinking about pooping.” This could be a no-go for more sensitive players as much as it is a huge bonus for those who like a little crassness in their humor. Everyone can have their own fun, discarding a card if they do not care for it or even customizing their own decks. As the charts demonstrate, the number of cards played directly correlate with the amount of fun had.

About Jeff Provine

Jeff Provine is a Composition professor, novelist, cartoonist, and traveler of three continents. His latest book is a collection of local ghost legends, Campus Ghosts of Norman, Oklahoma.

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