Kluster is a one to four player abstract game designed by Paula Henning and Robert Henning and published by Boarderline Editions. Kluster is all about magnets and a piece of string. What is so exciting about magnets and a piece of string I hear you cry. Well, surprisingly a lot actually and a lot of laughs and groans can be found in this box of random things.
Sit down and get ready for the rules explanation. Divide the magnets equally between the players, place the piece of string on your playing surface. In turn order, place a magnet within the boundaries of the string and repeat. That is it. The first player to get rid of all their magnets is the winner.
The interesting part of the game is that these magnets are crazy powerful. If two or more magnets “kluster” on your turn by being attracted to each other then you collect all of the clustered magnets.
Kluster is a super simple game. The rules can be explained in a matter of seconds, set up is simple and this can pretty much be played anywhere with a flat surface. From grandchildren to grandparents and everyone in between would be able to play Kluster.
Now, I am not going to sit here and tell you about the hidden strategies and the depth of the game, this is not that kind of game. It is very much a featherweight light game.
The kind of game you can take to the pub and have a few drinks whilst playing with your mate. The kind of game you can give to your kids and let them have a go playing with the magnets. It’s the kind of game that you end up spending all night playing just so your partner can beat you in a best of 37 games kind of game (or is that just us). Either way, you get my point.
Yet, Kluster is a really fun game. You do have to be careful not to attract other magnets and form a Kluster. You also need to be careful not to repel a placed magnet into a bunch of other magnets and form a “Kluster Giant” (this is a made up term by the way).
The piece of string which defines the boundaries is just not quite big enough (or at least it seems that way) and someone will undoubtedly end up making a mistake. You can also carefully manipulate the boundaries but this comes with its own risks and moving already placed magnets.
For what Kluster is trying to be and do, it does it well. It is a great casual game, it comes in a small box and a bag that you could use to transport it. It is great for all ages and my kids especially loved playing it.