Kulkmann's G@mebox - www.boardgame.de



Meelis Looveer


No. of Players:
2 - 6

G@mebox Star



At the SPIEL '13 convention the awards for the most unusual game name had to be given to BRAIN GAMES for their novelty Om Nom Nom (which translates to German "Mjam mjam"). This is certainly a name which I have never heard before, and together with some cute animal pictures the name suggested that the game is somehow concerned with the eating habits of animals.

Upon opening the box, you will quickly find out that this first guess was right - the game really is concerned about eating animals. However, it's not just about cheese and carrots which may be consumed by cute mice and rabbits, but it's also about bigger animals munching happily away on smaller ones!

Indeed, the three parts of the gameboard feature three food chains, one of the from cat to mouse to cheese, the next from wolf to rabbit to carrot, and the last from hedgehog to frog to fly. Each player receives an identical set of six cards, featuring always the two first animals from each of the three gameboards. Then, to begin a round of play, a hand of 15 dice is rolled, and the symbols (always the two last animals or other food from each board) are distributed onto their corresponding areas on each gameboard. That's all the preparation needed, so that the first turn can begin right away.

Each player now secretly chooses one of the animal cards on his hand, and then all chosen animals are revealed at once and placed on the board. Then the situation on each board will be evaluated, and a player now may take all the dice from an area if he has played the card of an animal which is one step higher in the food chain, e.g. a player whoe has played a rabbit may take all carrot dice. If more than one player have chosen the same animal, the dice will be evenly distributed among all participating players, with eventually remaining dice staying on the gameboard.


However, if another player has played an animal which is still a step higher in the food chain, that animal now will consume all the lower animal cards played by the other player(s) and the food on the third step will remain untouched (e.g. a wolf will consume all rabbits so that they cannot eat the carrots). Once again, several hunters will evenly split their prey.

All taken dice and animal cards are openly placed in front of the players who have captured them, together with the animal cards which they have used this turn. When this has been arranged, the next turn begins, which each player once again playing an animal card from his remaining hand. The situation then is resolved in the same fashion and the game continues until all players have used up all six of their cards. Now the scores for captured dice and cards are calculated, noted down and all players get back their hand of six cards. A new roll of the dice begins a new round, and winner will be the player with most points after three rounds.

Om Nom Nom is a great bluffing game where the players try to guess and counter-guess the cards which may be chosen by each other. Sometimes it's better to choose an animal which will plunder an area with few dice because this might not be suspected, but there are also instances in which a greedy player may get away with a high amount of captured dice because no other player was daring enough to send an animal to the same area. However, even though the first cards played each round can hardly be predicted, the remaining hand of available cards decreases with each turn, and so the players actually can develop small tactics which help to decide when a specific animal might be most useful.

Already the first few turns show that the game is highly addictive, and it is even better if played with a group of well-known friends because it's fun to guess at the slyness of the other players round the table. As it turned out, Om Nom Nom is a great game to start or end a gaming session, but if it is brought onto the table right at the beginning there is a high chance that it will stay there for a longer time than originally intended!

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Copyright & copy; 2014 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany