Exploding Kittens is a card game where you aim in avoiding to get exploded. The explosions happen randomly when you draw a specific cards from the pile (an explosions card), which can only be avoided with a defuse card.
You can avoid getting exploded in many different ways, one way would be avoiding to draw from the pile and making sure there is no dangerous card on top of it ;).

For this purpose there are many cards you can use: Attack, where you can force the next player to take two cards and you do not have to take one at all. Shuffle, where you can shuffle the draw pile or, for example, Nope with which you can avoid actions of another player, besides many others.

Complexity

The promise on the package saying “2 minutes to learn, 15 minutes to play” does not exactly hold. Nevertheless you can say that the rules are easily explained and you start playing within minutes. It is also quite practical because many of the instructions are printed on the cards. You do not have to know many of the rules by heart.
We first went briefly over them which are quite colorful and clear listed on the game manual. Then we decided to just start playing and clarify details when questions raised during playing. Thankfully this strategy proved successfull ;).

Defusing an explosion in Exploding Kittens
Defusing an explosion

Our group of players consisted of 5 persons, which increased the game length drastically. Game length can vary pretty much depending from game to game- It is also essential how the cards come from the deck. For example, when all of the defuse cars are lost right in the beginning and players are moving the explosion cards right up on the deck the game can come to an end pretty fast :).
On the other hand it can also be that it begins quite slowly. You can say that  the action factor is defined through the order of cards.

Some funny Action Cards in Exploding Kittens
Some funny Action Cards 🙂

Presentation

I like the cards and the different ways the kittens are presented :). They are quite colorful and creative. I personally think it is actually quite a pity that during playing you do not take the time and really look at the cards and read what they show. The different sketches on them that explain the different actions are quite fun to read!

There is lots of merchandise available on the official homepage of the game: https://explodingkittens.com/. Besides the regular edition called “Exploding Kittens” there is also an expansion available called “Imploding Kittens”. Additionally, there is also a NSFW (Not Save For Work) Edition. I got the regular one as well as the NSFW edition. They only differ in the cat comics on the cards. It turned out to be practical to have both editions because in case of more than 5 players you can mix the two decks and to have fun with more people.
The normal edition costs 19,99€ which is quite expensive for a card game. The cards have a good quality and I personally think the game is made with much love which makes it worth it in my eyes. In my opinion, if a game is of good quality, it makes it also a good, valueable present for friends :).

Original and NSFW edition of exploding kittens
Original and NSFW edition

For me Exploding Kittens can fill a whole evening – but I am also a big fan. I like the cards and presentation and I also like it that it is not too complex. There is a random and unpredictable component which make it fun and exciting during playing even if you are fit in the rules of the game. However, it might also be that you get bored after a few games because you cannot expect it to be as long lasting and sophisticated as a board game.

Weird Peacock

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