Catch a Roo Review | Board Games | Zatu Games UK | Seek Your Adventure

    Zed has hand-picked an exciting and varied selection of games in this mystery box. Expect to receive some of the best games as well as a few surprises!

    Subscribe Now »

    Each Month we bring you a mystery box filled to the brim of games and goodies all coming from the same theme. This month it’s an awards special!

    Subscribe Now »

    Looking for the latest new releases? Then this is the subscription for you, each month you’ll receive a mystery box full of the newest and biggest games!

    Subscribe Now »

    Menu

    Buy 3, get 3% off - use code BOARD3 · Buy 5, get 5% off - use code BOARD5

    Buy The Game

    Awards

    79%

    Rating

    • Artwork
    • Complexity
    • Replayability
    • Player Interaction
    • Component Quality

    You Might Like

    • It's a great family game.
    • Good value for money.
    • Kids love it.
    • Colourful playing pieces and cards.
    • Quick game time.

    Might Not Like

    • It is a kids game.
    • It's super lightweight.
    • The fact that you do actually like this game.
    • It's definitely not the next Gloomhaven!!

    Have you tried?

    Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here

    Catch a Roo Review

    Catch a Roo Review

    G’day mates! A review of Catch a Roo must surely be a bonza excuse to use some stereotypical Australian slang if ever there was one. So, you will have to indulge me because this review should be a ripper!

    For this review to reach its full potential you will need to adopt your best Australian accent. The easiest way to achieve this is to read each sentence as if it is a question. Making your voice go slightly higher pitched as you near the end of a sentence makes it heaps better.

    You may know Catch a Roo by one of its many pseudonyms, Kang-a-Roo, Kangaroo, Kango! or even Kaappaa Kenguru. This family game was first published in 2009 and was nominated for the Årets Spill Best Children's Game in the same year.

    Catch a Roo was designed by the prolific Reiner Knizia. You might know his name from games like High Society, El Dorado or Forbidden City to name but a few. The game is currently published by the Green Board Game Company, also known as BrainBox.

    Gameplay

    This game was given to my seven-year-old son by Santa when the man himself conveniently visited Paulton’s Park on the same day as we did. Once the magic of Christmas was over and I had gone back to my day job, my wife tried to play this with my three boys, but had to abandon it as she could not fathom things out. About eight months later the boys rediscovered it lurking in a toy box and asked me to decipher the rules. I did, and within five minutes we were playing. Now the reason I share this with you is for a couple of reasons. Firstly, to highlight how bad my wife is with board game instructions, and secondly, to pad out this gameplay section because it is really easy to play.

    Deal five cards to every player and an additional pile of five cards to one side. The 11 differently coloured Kangaroos go in the centre. Each player lays one card and takes the corresponding Roo, always drawing back up to five cards. At some point you will lay a card that matches a Roo someone has already claimed. As the name of the game suggests, it is at this point you will catch their Roo. However, if they have the same colour card they can lay it to block the steal.

    Play continues until the deck is used up and the first player has run out of cards. At this point the winner is the player who has caught the most kangaroos – fair dinkum!

    How it Actually Plays

    Catch a Roo is, without question, a lightweight kid’s game. While the box suggests seven years plus, there is no reason why a five or six-year-old couldn’t play. They might not win but they will still have fun. The publisher reckons three to six players can battle it out in this hand management game.  Four to six people certainly seems good when I have played it. The snatching of kangaroos feels personal, but never devastating.

    The game itself is very quick and you are constantly engaged as people could be snatching your pieces. Play time is about 10 minutes. Quick enough that you will normally play a second game, or a third.

    In my house, we play Catch a Roo with the kids regularly after dinner. I also, perhaps ashamedly, play this as an end of the night filler. With so-called grown-ups there is often a little quip like ‘I didn’t want that one anyway’ or ‘white isn’t even a colour’ said in a dreadful Australian accent as your piece bounces away from you. Blocks will be accompanied with a ‘Nope’ à la Exploding Kittens or, depending on alcohol consumption, something ruder.

    Components

    The box is small, and could be smaller. Catch a Roo could almost fit in a Love Letter size bag. This makes it very transportable. It is not a travel game per se, it certainly fits in your luggage and is one to take with you for when you and your family get to wherever you are going.

    The cards are bright and of nice quality. I personally love the brightly coloured kangaroo playing pieces, as do my family. I am actually surprised by the quality of these, bearing in mind it is currently under £10 on Zatu.

    In Defence of Catch a Roo

    When I do a review I formulate my own opinion, but I inevitably read other reviews elsewhere. I feel like Catch a Roo has previously been given a bit of unfair bad press. Based on these comments and reviews I would never have bought this game, Yet, over the last two months, it has been one of my most played games. Thanks Santa!

    I read the following comments on Board Game Geek that I feel need defending:

    “If you start counting the cards, you'll win.” & “It's a good introduction to some card-counting tactics”. This is incorrect. The very reason you deal out five cards at the beginning and put them to one side means that card counting is impossible. You cannot know what is in the deck. I suppose if three cards of one colour have been played and you know the fourth is in your hand that would help. I don't think those writing the comments have thought about it as much as I have though.

    You'll clean up if you have a good memory.” There is too much luck involved for this to be the case in my opinion.

    “No fun, for adults only.” I have fun with this game and I am an adult. My gaming group (which incidentally includes an Ander-roo) also has fun due to our silly accents and banter, other people should too.

    “A game with a very limited decision space, even for a kids game.” You need to decide when to play a certain colour card. Do you hold back the two of a kind for later in the game when you can snatch it and then have a card to defend it? Should you use them as a double-attack, or just play one now? Will you decide to take a kangaroo from the middle or launch an early and mean attack on someone who has got a Roo already in front of them?

    These are decisions and no, they don't have a massive impact, but they can affect the game. I admit there is quite a bit of luck Catch a Roo but I have already said this is a lightweight game intended for kids. I’m just arguing that if played with a pinch of salt it can be fun for adults too. Especially at the end of the night when wine or beer has been plentiful.

    Final Thoughts on Catch a Roo

    I was actually quite stoked to get to do a review of this game as it has become my board gaming guilty pleasure. I understand that I like Catch a Roo more than I should. There may be a time in the future where I get a bit bored of this game, but we have been playing it lots and I have not tired of it.

    I think it is reasonable to say that if this game was a boxing kangaroo it wouldn’t be featherweight. It wouldn’t even be flyweight. Nope, this game would certainly be fighting in the strawweight division. So what? The game is lightweight – this is not a negative.

    It is great for kids, easy to learn and the snatching of other player’s Roos is a bonus. An opportunity to be mean to a sibling without getting in trouble is certainly not wasted on my three boys! As it is part of the gameplay, and you can only choose from the cards in your hand, there shouldn’t be any tears before bedtime over Roo rustling. I’m not saying you will remember ‘that’ victory in the same way as you might with a Euro game or RPG, but it is competitive and fun.

    I will also add, it would make an excellent stocking filler. This is obviously the reason Santa got it for my son. It would also make a great present for a child’s birthday party where you don’t want to spend too much. Let's be fair, there isn’t much you can buy for under a tenner anymore. Not that is any good at least! My kids would all recommend Catch a Roo regardless of the price, it just makes it a bit sweeter.

    This family card game, with its awesome playing pieces, makes my top 10 games that I enjoy playing with my children. I do confess it is a long way from making my actual top 10 list. To be fair to Catch a Roo you don’t buy this game expecting much. For me, it delivers more than it should and as a strawweight game it still packs a bit of a punch!

    Rating

    • Artwork
    • Complexity
    • Replayability
    • Player Interaction
    • Component Quality

    You Might Like

    Might Not Like

    Zatu Score

    79%

    Buy Now

    Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here
    Excellent
    08000075444
    Bowthorpe Main Centre, Unit 15, Norwich NR5 9HA
    Zatu Games is rated 4.90 based on 10166
    Reviews

    Great prices and an excellent selection of games. I know that whichever game I want I can get it from Zatu and cheaper than anywhere else. Great customer service too.

    Great prices and an excellent selection of games. I know that whichever game I want I can get it from Zatu and cheaper than anywhere else. Great customer service too.

    Always great service. Used Zatu multiple times and I’ve never been disappointed

    Always great service. Used Zatu multiple times and I’ve never been disappointed

    Good prices. Real Humans on the end of phone too. Delivery about 2 days.

    Good prices. Real Humans on the end of phone too. Delivery about 2 days.

    Always a good shopping experience when using Zatu. Good range of stock and competitive prices.

    Always a good shopping experience when using Zatu. Good range of stock and competitive prices.

    I called the customer service team to ask if items were in stock, had a lovely person answer the phone who was knowledgeable on the product i wanted to purchase and confirmed the item was in stock where as everywhere else was sold out! placed my order and had no hiccups navigating the website at all! Great, Great job! :)

    I called the customer service team to ask if items were in stock, had a lovely person answer the phone who was knowledgeable on the product i wanted to purchase and confirmed the item was in stock where as everywhere else was sold out! placed my order and had no hiccups navigating the website at all! Great, Great job! :)

    Enjoyed the video reviews in particular...

    Enjoyed the video reviews in particular...

    Really easy to order, love the helpful, detailed reviews. Looking forward to my games!

    Really easy to order, love the helpful, detailed reviews. Looking forward to my games!

    Fast shipping and well packaged, can't wait to get stuck in to Gloomhaven! Thanks

    Fast shipping and well packaged, can't wait to get stuck in to Gloomhaven! Thanks

    I live in Germany and was looking for Harry Potter Death Eaters Rising everywhere, but all the shops I found didn't ship to Germany or it was unreasonably expensive. Then I found Zatu Games and not only were they shipping to Germany but the shipping cost was really low and the game was available for a discounted pre-order price, so I thought I'd try Zatu Games. The game arrived in perfect condition and the customer support via Facebook messenger was really good when I had questions about when they would get their hands on the game and would start shipping out pre-orders. A very pleasant experience and I highly recommend Zatu Games to everyone ordering board games online!

    I live in Germany and was looking for Harry Potter Death Eaters Rising everywhere, but all the shops I found didn't ship to Germany or it was unreasonably expensive. Then I found Zatu Games and not only were they shipping to Germany but the shipping cost was really low and the game was available for a discounted pre-order price, so I thought I'd try Zatu Games. The game arrived in perfect condition and the customer support via Facebook messenger was really good when I had questions about when they would get their hands on the game and would start shipping out pre-orders. A very pleasant experience and I highly recommend Zatu Games to everyone ordering board games online!

    Great game, dispatched very speedily and arrived quickly in perfect condition!

    Great game, dispatched very speedily and arrived quickly in perfect condition!

    Read All Reviews