We’ve all heard of an orangutan, but how about an OranguTwang?

In this game, from PlayMonster, two or more players ages 4 and up compete to add weight to a hanging Orangutan — but not too much, or else they’ll send him flying.

Setup for the game is fairly simple, enough so that kids should be able to do it themselves or with minimal adult assistance once the pieces are out of the box. Instead of a traditional board, this game plays out on two plastic palm trees with a string between them. Before each round, be sure to push up on the toucan-shaped lever on the side until it clicks. This puts a bit of slack in the string, which is important for the game. Then, hang the plastic orangutan figure from the string.

Gameplay is also fairly simple. Players take turns rolling a die to see which type of piece — pineapple, bat, banana bunch, gecko, or coconut — they must add to the orangutan. Each piece has a small hook on it, and between his hands, feet, hair spikes, and vine, there are plenty of places on the orangutan where the pieces can take hold. 

There is a catch though. Once there is enough weight hanging from the string, it triggers the toucan lever and pulls the string taut. In addition to making everyone jump in their seats, this will send the orangutan and all of the hanging pieces flying into the air. The last player to hang a piece on the orangutan before everything goes flying wins the game! To avoid this twang (and losing the game), players need to be strategic about where they place their pieces to keep the weight equally distributed. Because each type of piece has a different weight, there is no magic number of pieces that will set off the twang, so every game will be a bit different.

This provides a fun, interesting opportunity to introduce kids to the basic concepts of balancing, physics, and more. Also, because the game combines both skill and luck, it is good for players of varying skill levels/ages to enjoy together. The more kids play the game, the better they will understand how different amounts of weight and pressure will set off the twang.

In addition to the instructions sheet, the game comes with a guide featuring helpful hints and tips, as well as “packing instructions,” which show you the best way to pack up the game so that it will fit back in the box.

Who will master the art of the Twang? There’s only one way to find out!