If you have kids that are anything like mine, a game with a silly and sassy name tends to grab their attention right away. The moment Bananagrams Inc. sent us a complimentary copy of Cheeky Butts, one of the games from their Fall 2019 releases, the boys kept asking when we could get a chance to play it. Luckily their Fall Break provided some good gaming opportunities.
What is Cheeky Butts?
Cheeky Butts is a Hot Potato-style matching game for 2-6 players ages 5+ and takes about 20 minutes to play. It has an MSRP of $14.99.
Cheeky Butts Components
Cheeky Butts contains the following:
- 12 Cheeky Trays
- 18 Chance Tokens
- 60 Cheeky Cards
- 1 Randomized Timer
- 1 Instruction Booklet
The timer is definitely solid enough for play but will require 2 AAA batteries that are not included, and you will need a screwdriver to place them. It also has a few sound settings in case your kid hates really loud noises. The Chance Tokens are certainly more solid and made of a thicker cardboard. The Cheeky Cards with bright pictures of animals facing the player from their back ends are playing card thickness. It makes sense for the shuffling they need to go through, but players under the recommended minimum age of 5 may be a touch rough on them. The Cheeky Trays are thicker than the cards but needed to be thin enough to fold into shape. They probably hit the right balance of sturdy but bendable, but again, a player under 5 might be a touch too rough on them. Generally speaking, the component quality is on par with the game price.
How to Play Cheeky Butts
Overall, this is a fast to learn and fun to play game for kids and families.
The goal of Cheeky Butts is to be the only player left with any Chance Tokens.
The only trick with setup is a grown up is probably needed the first time you play, otherwise there is no reason moving forward why kids can’t set things up on their own. As I have stated before, while my kids love to play games with the grown-ups, games they can set up on their own are the ones they play with more. An adult will need to get a screwdriver, as I previously mentioned, in order to get batteries in the randomized timer. The next grown-up required step is in folding the Cheeky Trays. The good news is, once folded, they fit back in the box without needing to be flattened and refolded next game. The challenge is that a kid might really struggle to fold the corners without mangling the tray in their enthusiasm to get playing. The game does have instructions on how to fold this up, and I recommend a grown up folds or at least monitors whatever kid is folding.
Once the grown up required part is done, things are pretty straight forward. The Change Tokens will need to be punched out of their cardboard the first time, but kids can easily handle this. Then do the followings things to get your game ready:
- Give each player 3 Chance Tokens
- Shuffle the Cheeky Cards and put them in a center pile.
- Divide the Cheeky Trays evenly among the players (unless it is a 5-player game in which 2 players get extra trays in this situation). Sort out the fairest way to do this.
- Line the trays up in front of each player.
- Put the timer close enough to be reached and heard.
- Decide who goes first, this person is now the Active Player.
- The Active Player starts the round by pressing the Randomized Timer.
- The Active Player picks up a Cheeky Card and Places in the correct Cheeky Tray. If the Cheeky Tray is one of theirs, they remain the Active Player. If the card goes into another player’s tray that player is now the Active Player. The card must be all the way in the tray to tag another player as Active Player.
- Continue drawing and placing cards until the timer goes off.
- When the Timer Goes off, the current Active Player loses a Chance Token. We just flipped ours to the other color side for ease.
The remaining rounds will play just like the previous ones with a few adjustments.
- At the beginning of each round after the first, players shift one Cheeky Tray clockwise to the next player.
- At the end of the round, if a player loses their last Chance Token, they are out and their trays get equally redistributed to the remaining players (unless there are five players, in which case how to handle that has already been noted).
- Your kids may enjoy shouting something like “Cheeky Butts” when they pass off being an Active Player.
- If all the cards get used up before the timer goes off, everyone is safe for a round.
- If the card pile is low at the end of the round, gather the cards, shuffle them, spread them out in the middle of the table, and continue playing.
The game ends when only one player has any Chance Tokens left and is declared the winner.
Why You Should Play Cheeky Butts
Cheeky Butts is a game your kids are going to love, and you’re going to have a fun time playing with them. The adorable animal pictures of animals from behind manages to hit that family-friendly “cheeky” line without being too crass, and the component quality matches right up with the game price point.
While setup needs a little grown-up help the first time with timer batteries and tray folding, your kids should be able to ready a game themselves pretty easily moving forward which encourages them to play the game more in our experience.
Gameplay is simple, easy, but lots of fun. The game doesn’t require reading so kids as young as the recommended minimum age of 5 should be fine to play. There is a certain amount of speed required for the game, but the randomized timer helps level that field for younger players when they’re up against older ones. I was actually out first, and W, our five-year-old, actually won our first game. You might be able to wiggle the age limit a touch, but it lines up with skill level nicely. The shifting of the trays between rounds does help keep players on their toes as they might have to check around a table to see which players currently have which other trays.
As noted before, the game has a MSRP of $14.99 which seems very reasonable given where the component quality is, and the replayability of the game. The price is at a nice point for gifting to other kids too. The game is scheduled to be released this fall.