Cockroach Poker Review | Board Games | Zatu Games UK

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Awards

75%

Rating

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

You Might Like

  • Very easy to learn.
  • Fun competitive dynamic.
  • Playable amongst any group.

Might Not Like

  • Lack of strategic depth.
  • Potential sense of lack of conclusion.
  • Can be very competitive.

Have you tried?

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Cockroach Poker Game Review

I stare into the eyes of my opponent hoping to exude confidence. My voice strong, I tell them that the card in front of them is a spider. The corner of their mouth briefly turns up into a smile that tells me they know. One word. “Lie” they say, with almost a little pity in their voice. Almost. The card is flipped, and a slimy, somewhat arrogant looking, toad is revealed.

I try a new tactic, I avoid any eye contact whatsoever, grab a card with a small, almost cute, fly on it and tell them that it is a rat. I glimpse up quickly, they shake their head and with great relish “that’s a lie” they blurt out. My tactics may change here and I could target someone else, but I am desperate and I'm obviously being read like a children’s book. Stubbornness sets in.  I assume they are just being lucky and reach for another card. My five-year-old son giggles in delight, he knows, he always knows.

Cockroach Poker is a game that is incredibly simple, but it comes with satisfying depth.

Playing the Game

All 64 cards are dealt out to the players and the aim is to bluff your opponents into wrongly ‘guessing’ whether the card you have placed in front of them is what you say it is. If they guess correctly, the card goes face-up in front of you.

There are eight different species, and you want to end up with no more than three of any one species face-up in front of you. If you get a fourth, you lose. And if you run out of cards to play, you lose. Instead of guessing, you can pick up the card look at it and then place it in front of another player, either stating that the card is the same little creature or maybe one of the other seven, bringing additional information or misinformation into the mix.

The depth of the game comes from using the knowledge that you have of the cards in your hand and those that have been placed in front of yourself and others to help you to try and devise whether your opponent is likely to be lying or telling the truth.

Further to this is the ability to use your opponent's face-up cards against them. If they already have three spiders, and you place a card in front of them and tell them it is a spider, they may be far more likely to say true, as the risk is so much greater for them. This can allow you to offload cards which may present a problem for you.

Meanwhile, the other players are using the same knowledge against you. As a result, you can end up having to place cards which will result in defeat. So, who do you put them in front of and what do you say?

In Cockroach Poker there is only a loser, which may create a sense of a lack of conclusion for some. However, for me this is part of the game’s charm. It results in targeting certain people in an attempt to avoid personal disaster and can bring out the right kind of competition and a sense of in game personal battles.

Final Thoughts on Cockroach Poker

The great joy of Cockroach Poker is learning just how bad you and others can be at bluffing. Another joy is watching people who have thought and overthought their tactics become increasingly desperate. Watching as their opponents continue to either guess correctly or shrewdly discern whether they are lying or not, through their body language, false bravado or shifty eyes.

More than anything Cockroach Poker is just very funny. Watching people being called out by friends, partners or children is funny. This results in a lot of laughter and gentle mockery. Some may want more from the game, as it is , on one level, just a guessing game where you get lucky or not. However, to me there are so many levels that make it so much more.

One minor issue is that whilst there is a lot of interaction, it can be between select people. As a result, you may be left with nothing to do for some turns. However, this is only in larger games Of course, this is offset by watching the drama unfold.

Whilst the components are very simple, just 64 cards made up of eight sets of eight, each card is individual and the artwork (by Rolf Vogt) is charming with a cartoon like quality meaning that I did not feel short changed by the purchase of this deck.

Games can be very quick, lasting 10 to 20 minutes, and can be played in almost any group. It's a game you can play last after a few drinks. Whilst it's also a game to play with children just before bed. The level of complexity is up to the players involved and I have always found it a popular choice.

Rating

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

You Might Like

Might Not Like

Zatu Score

75%

Buy Now

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Excellent
08000075444
Bowthorpe Main Centre, Unit 15, Norwich NR5 9HA
Zatu Games is rated 4.90 based on 9485
Reviews

Never heard of the company before. As a emerging board game fan I am pleased to find they have a large range of games and even have a reward scheme, which is great. Will be back to buy for myself in the New Year (bought a Christmas present).

Never heard of the company before. As a emerging board game fan I am pleased to find they have a large range of games and even have a reward scheme, which is great. Will be back to buy for myself in the New Year (bought a Christmas present).

Great selection of games, reasonably priced and easy to order. Waiting for delivery now.

Great selection of games, reasonably priced and easy to order. Waiting for delivery now.

Very easy to use, a great choice and great value.

Very easy to use, a great choice and great value.

Very pleased with the way it was wrapped and the delivery arrived when it said it would. This is a Christmas present for my grandson, so will let you know how the game went . Thank you once again xxx would buy from your company again.

Very pleased with the way it was wrapped and the delivery arrived when it said it would. This is a Christmas present for my grandson, so will let you know how the game went . Thank you once again xxx would buy from your company again.

Parcel was processed and despatched quickly.

Parcel was processed and despatched quickly.

I received my order in good time and condition. Thanks

I received my order in good time and condition. Thanks

First time using Zatu and rather impressed. Easy to navigate store, good prices and speedy delivery.

First time using Zatu and rather impressed. Easy to navigate store, good prices and speedy delivery.

Good selection of boardgames at good prices. Orders delivered promptly and packaged well.

Good selection of boardgames at good prices. Orders delivered promptly and packaged well.

Excellent service in resolving my error. Great price for the game too!

Excellent service in resolving my error. Great price for the game too!

Only order 2 products but both arrived on time and in perfect condition. Prices are competitive. The only issue I have is that postage to me in Republic of Ireland is high

Only order 2 products but both arrived on time and in perfect condition. Prices are competitive. The only issue I have is that postage to me in Republic of Ireland is high

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