Fun in a Flash

If the games "Last Word" and "5 Second Rule" got together and had a space-age robot baby, it might look a lot like Flash and Furious, the latest offering from Beloit, Wisconsin's Patch Products. This party game aims to get players shouting and laughing as the unique electronic "Flasher" device taps out a tune that speeds up faster and faster while it flashes each player's color randomly to indicate who needs to shout out a response that fits the category.

And the categories are good ones - often very open-ended and subject to interpretation. Results will vary based on the players. A few examples:
  • Ways to manage stress
  • Words with a "z" in them
  • Things that get wet
  • Positions people are voted into
  • Things you shouldn't do in a library
  • Photo-sharing web sites
  • Things you suck through a straw
  • When faster is better
  • Reasons to go to bed early
588 total categories are provided, so anyone who enjoys the game will have a lot of fun before cycling through them all.  Because the categories are so diverse and there are no hard and fast rules about what constitutes a "right" answer, players take turns serving as Referee to make judgement calls on answers.  Really it's not about winning or losing, more about an opportunity to act up and shout silly (yet "correct") answers.

This is a good game for those who are non-competitive and just looking to have some fun.  The Flasher is completely random, and therefore will sometimes flash the same person more than once in a row - possibly several times, and possibly when the tempo has reached a high rate of speed.  This will end your turn very quickly.  But as long as everyone is having fun and not worrying too much about the score (a player who does not succeed in a round is "awarded" the category card, and the player who has the FEWEST cards at the end is the winner) will be sure to enjoy the clever and ridiculous shouted-out answers.

One caveat: be sure to enunciate clearly when giving the category!  One of our Referees gave what sounded like the category "Types of Saucers," and we got through "Flying Saucer", "Snow Saucer" and "Cup and Saucer" before having to resort to "Saucer-ess" (sorceress).  (The actual category: Types of Sauces).

The game also comes with batteries installed, which enables you to start playing right out of the box (and allows the game to talk to you in the store to encourage you to buy it.)