Antoine Bauza &
Bruno Cathala


No. of Players:
2 - 6

G@mebox Star



The setting of this game is known from every James Bond movie: some sinister mastermind is plotting to reach world domination, but instead of getting rid of the pesky special agents he simply invites them to a party where he boasts of his deeds. There is enough evidence available at the party to convict our evil Dr. Shark, but unfortunately all the evidence has been distributed in a deep pool with hungry sharks. However, our daring agents are not frightened by these toothy animals, and so they hop into the pool in the hope to get some of the evidence out!

The evidence against Dr. Shark consists of several items belonging into several groups, and so weapons, costumes, plans and other things can be found in the pool. However, every item has been printed onto two or more puzzle-parts, and all these parts have been placed in a deep black sack out of which they must be fished. However, as the sharks are hungry, the players cannot fish in the sack for too long, and so a sand-timer is used for determining the maximum amount of time which a player may spend for fishing in the sack.

However, the wacky part of the game begins when it comes to the question how a player fishes in the sack. As a matter of fact, the players do not simply draw parts out of the sack, but instead they must choose one of several ways to get the parts out. Since the puzzle-parts have different shapes and backside-textures, the players may choose to fish for different shapes, for parts with the same or with different backside textures, and as long as they draw parts out of the sack matching their chosen search action they can continue to draw if they still have time left. However, the arrival of a shark-part which is also hidden in the sack may end this search rather untimely, and in addition the active player also must stop drawing when he draws out a tile which is not matching the nature of his search action.

Whenever the players have all matching parts to complete one piece of evidence, these parts are discarded and returned into the box, but for this the players receive a victory points token with the value of the token depending on the size of the evidence found. The game is won by the player with most victory points, but while this outlining of the basic structure of the game may leave the impression that the game might be something like an easy party game, be assured that there is much more to this game than might be thought on first sight.

So, the players not only can choose the three kinds of search actions outlined above, but they may also use their time for the search of one specific part, or they may even draw a whole handful of tiles out of the bag. If they succeed in sorting all these tiles into matching colours within the given time, they may keep one tile of each colour (type of evidence) and so the players are ill-advised to take too many parts into their hands. However, the whole search becomes really interesting by the fact that the different textures on the backsides of the parts correspond to the different groups of evidence, so that a player actually can try to draw parts from the sack which match other parts which he has found so far. On the other hand, a big parts overview also is accessible to all players, and so they has to evaluate which search action will be most suitable for their current situation, taking into account that the game only runs over a limited number of turns so that all players must hurry to finish as many pieces of evidence as possible.

Quite nasty is the fact that each different type of search action only may be chosen for once or twice during a round (depending on the number of players), and since the starting player rotates players sometimes have to stick with search actions which they would not have chosen otherwise. Here they have to evaluate the situation, trying to make the best of it in order to keep in the competition.

The game features a perfect styling with it's Sixties-graphics and the cute wooden shark which can be used to distract the player who is currently fishing in the sack (or, if you are nicer, just to announce that the sand timer has ended). Even small atmospheric accessories like Dr. Shark's cat which is used for marking the turn number are not forgotten, but the game itself does not need to hide behind all great looking components. As a matter of fact, Antoine Bauza and Bruno Cathala have added a very unusual and challenging game of skill to HURRICAN's portfolio of games, and to my mind the game offers both an extraordinary entertainment factor plus a very tricky playing mechanism. This gem should not be underestimated!!!

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Copyright © 2011 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany