This Game Goes to Eleven

Game nights can get intense very quickly. Kick things into high gear with This Game Goes to Eleven, from Gamewright.

This card game “turns it up past 10” and invites players to strategically amp up the music (aka the game) by taking turns adding up digits to the correct sum. The goal of the game is to be the first player to discard all your cards. The catch? As players discard cards, the overall value of the discard pile must not exceed the number 11.

To begin, players are dealt three shuffled, hidden cards and stack the remaining deck amp-side up beside the drawn discard pile. Players ages 8 and up will take turns playing one of their numbered cards to add the total until they reach the number 11. The game gets increasingly difficult because, for example, say the pile’s value is currently at 8 and one player holds cards for a 5, 6, and 9. Since none of those cards would yield a sum of less than or equal to 11, that player would lose the round.

If the cards total more than the magic number 11, the round ends with the player who tipped the final sum over taking the stack of cards for themselves. If you can total the pile to exactly 11, then you can hand the completed pile to an opponent of your choosing. Think strategically about whom you’ll inflict with the punishment of more cards, because a winner is crowned based on the fewest cards in their possession by the end of the game.

The game goes quickly since players are only adding digits up to 11, without the intent of going over. Each round ends once 11 is achieved.

While the game can help boost kids’ math addition skills, there are also fun illustrated cards that can reset the game to keep things moving. Amp up the pile with the rocking 11-numbered card, which is illustrated with a head-banging rockstar, which can take the pile directly to 11 and you can choose a player to receive the newly completed pile. However, should your music get too rowdy, a matronly looking librarian card can shush your volume and reset the pile’s sum back to zero.

The game also includes a silver guitar pick, which a group of at least three players can use to denote who will receive all discarded piles in each round in an alternative game. To keep things fair, as soon as the initial person with the guitar pick has received the finished piles from that round, the pick gets rotated to the next player, and so on, as each round continues.