“Cause I got a golden ticket… I’ve got a golden twinkle in my eye!” You’ve found a golden ticket and now you can visit the candy factory! In reality, a candy factory is not as magical as the famous factory of the wondrous Willy Wonka. You’re not a prize winner, but you just applied. That golden ticket of yours? An employment contract. Chosen to work in the candy factory. But making candy must be fun, right? Well…. You get to work in the logistics department and have to put as many prize-winning sweets into boxes as possible. The biggest sweetheart wins, but beware: the office politics of this candy factory are murderous and the other players are less sweet and try to make your life sour… so less Charlie – more Patrick Bateman!
Candy Lab is a take-that card game from Geronimo games. In other words, Candy Lab is a light-hearted, simple and chaotic card game with a high degree of interaction. Players attack each other directly and try to literally and figuratively steal the candy from under each other’s noses.
On the table are (in random order) all colourful plastic sticks: the candy canes. Players try to fulfil orders and collect candy canes in order to earn the most points. During a turn, a player can play an order card or place candy canes on the table to draw new cards.
By playing an order card, players may take candy canes from the centre of the table. The catch: the order card shows colours in a certain order and these must correspond with the candy canes you want to take. The order card played scores victory points. Each candy cane also contains victory points, but some candy canes you take also contain symbols. These symbols represent effects that you may perform when you pick up these pieces. The effects usually provide an opportunity to bully the other players. With effects you can, for example, take away candy canes or cards from your opponents.
Orders get exhausted, so players must also acquire new sales. During your turn, you can place one to three candy canes back on the table. This player may then take cards equal to the amount of victory points that this player puts back into the (candy) jar. Can a player not execute one of the two previous actions during a turn? Then you may draw a single card. The game is over as soon as the players have finished their candy (when there are no more candies on the table) or when there are no more orders to fulfil (the draw pile is empty).
Is Candy Lab a satiating candy? For the frequent player, this game is probably just a bit too chaotic and too much driven by luck. Due to the different actions and effects, the game is interactive, but it is difficult to stick to a specific tactic. Candy Lab is especially good for beginners and sweet tooths because of its simple gameplay and delicious chaos.