Designed for players ages 6 and up, this game is one that requires both speed and attention to detail. The premise is pretty straightforward: Each of the 3-6 players has a deck of circular food cards (everyone has the same number). On the count of three, everyone flips over a card at the same time. Each card features an image of a type of food, and players must race to slap their hands down onto any matching cards on the table.
This creates plenty of fun chaos already, but there is an added challenge: Players also have to correctly identify the food type they are slapping by shouting out its name. If players forget to say the food’s name (or say the name incorrectly) the card is still in play and another player can steal it. Players get to keep any cards that they slap and correctly identify first. It is possible, in the mayhem, for two different players to each take one card from a matching set.
Between card flips, the unmatched food cards stay in the middle of the table, providing a buffet of potential matches for the next set of cards.
In addition to the 11 food types (waffles, pancakes, pizza, pasta, fruit, salad, nachos, tacos, sushi, lobster, and fries), there are some wild cards mixed in to add some spice. Buffet cards are free cards that can players can slap and claim without a match, while Hangry cards allow players to steal food cards from an opponent.
The images used on the food cards also really add to the game’s play value. Some of them, such as waffles and pancakes and fruit and salad, look very similar at first glance. That adds a level of challenge to the game, as you find yourself misidentifying some of the cards and racing to correct yourself.
A round of Hangry ends when players run out of Food Cards to flip. At this time, everyone counts the number of cards they have won via slapping. To keep track of progress in the game, each player also gets a place setting card, which has spaces for a main course, a side dish, a dessert, and a drink. The player with the most cards at the end of a round gets to fill in two of the spots on their place setting, while the second-place player gets to fill in one. You use a separate set of circular food pieces called “menu items” to fill in the spots. These don’t impact the main game, but are just a fun way to track who is winning!
Then, you shuffle the food cards deck, divide them among the players, and start again. You repeat this process until one player has filled all four spots on their place setting. When I played with a total of three people, it took three rounds to finish the game.
Hangry doesn’t require a lot of time to learn, nor does it take a lot of strategy or skill, which makes it a great option for players of different ages to enjoy together. I played it with two other adults, and we had a blast! You may feel a bit silly at first shouting “SALAD!” as you practically karate-chop the table, but it is guaranteed to elicit endless laughter and fun game night memories.