Updated: Nov 24, 2020
Happy New Year! This year, as a special treat, we decided to forego the usual booze-up and instead brought in the new year with some board games. Much merriment was had and we closed out the evening and rung in 2019 with a hand of Time’s Up Title Recall.
Time’s Up is a game I’ve owned almost as long as I’ve been playing games. It was one of the first party games I picked up and subsequently never got to the table. The problem was I never felt like we had enough people to play. I’d listened to dozens of reviews and heard everyone say how much more fun it is with 6+ and they’d never play it with less. Well, here I am nearly a decade on and I’m telling you it’s just as much fun with 3!
We decided to play a shorter game so we only used 30 cards but that still gave us plenty to work with. Time’s Up Title Recall presents you with a deck of 400+ double ended cards. You can choose either the Blue or Yellow end for each game. 40 cards are dealt evenly between the players and then another 2 cards are dealt to each player. The players then look at and discard 2 cards from their hand, hopefully getting rid of some of the trickier cards.
Each card has the name of a song, or movie, or TV show etc. Once players have culled the deck the remaining 40 cards are shuffled together and the game begins. The game consists of 3 rounds broken up into 15 second turns. Players take turns with the deck trying to describe whatever title is on the card. They can say any words they like except the ones on the card. For example “Elliot finds an alien, Steven Spielberg movie” could be a clue for E.T The Extra Terrestrial.
The clue giver cannot pass and the guessers must keep guessing until they get it right or until time runs out. This continues until eventually all 40 cards will have been guessed correctly by the teams around the table. Each team tallies up their correct guesses and that's their score. Player recap the titles by reading them aloud before shuffling them back into a single deck for round 2.
In round 2 all 40 cards must be guessed but the clue giver can now pass and must pass if an incorrect answer is given. They can also only say one word. For example, “Elliot” or “Alien” or “Spielberg” for E.T. However they can also add actions and/or noises if they like. At the end of the round after all 40 cards are correctly guess the teams tally up their points and reshuffle the cards for round 3. Round 3 plays the same as Round 2 but no words are allowed only actions and sounds.
Time’s Up works really well with a good group of friends. It starts off fairly easily as players simply try and describe a series of films/TV shows/books to one another but ends with players attempting to mime Love Shack or The Rocky Horror Picture Show with hilarious results.
With just three players you work with your neighbours to score points and each round two of the three people at the table are involved. It’s a frenetic and hilarious game and even though you’ve heard all the answers 3 times by the start of round 3, you still cannot work out why Dave is picking up a lawn chair and hitting against the table or doing an impression of a mime artist screaming at a lamp.
So I highly recommend Time’s Up for any party situation, it works well with large groups but just as well with right crowd, even if there’s only 3 of you.
My only negative... the 2017 reprint has some of the worst packing ever! The box is really sturdy, great construction but its a terrible storage method, tall and square! It neither holds the cards well or stacks neatly on my shelf!