There is nothing in this world that a child loves more than playing a game with their parents… Except dinosaurs.
I was lucky enough to have a chance to play Super Tooth this past week with my family. I’ll admit that I had my doubts when the game arrived. It looked too simple. But, Super Tooth hides its complexity well. So well, in fact, that you might not notice it if you aren’t looking for it. That is one of the secrets of a good family game in my eyes.
Super Tooth is, at its core, a matching card game. Players are tasked with collecting matched sets of plant eating dinosaurs. Each turn a “landscape” of three cards is laid out on the play area. Players will then resolve event cards (like the egg that lets the player bring back a card that had previously been discarded), feed or chase away meat eaters, and then ultimately choose one type of plant eater from the board. There is some luck involved here, but it is important to choose carefully to make sure that you are getting matched sets and not just random cards.
The game itself includes the cards (the number will vary depending on how many expansions you are using, and “Cretaceous Coins” that are used to help keep score. The cards were thick enough that they would survive through a lot of play, but it would be best to protect them from little hands whenever possible. They would fit very well in standard card protectors.
My youngest son feels left out of a lot of gaming sessions because a lot of the games that cycle through our home require reading or advanced strategies that he struggles with (being five). He was in all his glory while playing Super Tooth. He was able to grasp the basic gameplay mechanics quickly and was able to implement his own strategies after his first game.
What turned this pleasant surprise into a best case scenario was the level of engagement from everyone playing. My brother was playing with us and he tends to stick with “deep strategy” games and he enjoyed himself (even if he was getting beaten by a five year old)! Super Tooth may be a matching game at its core, but the way that it is played turns it into a sort of drafting game. Players who pay attention to what other players are picking up and discarding will be able to employ strategies like counter-drafting (taking a card that your opponent needs even if it isn’t beneficial to you). My eldest son did that without giving it a name.
I’ll cut to the chase here folks. Super Tooth is an amazing game, but it might not see the light of day without a little help. Do yourself a favor if you have younger kids and buy this game. You will not regret the chance to play this great game with them (and lets admit it… you like dinosaurs too.)
Supertooth was picked up by Gamewright for 2015! Find out more here!