Review: Duos (Granna) – English

Some friendships are for life and some friendships are only for a while. Maybe you seek out friends on similar interests? Maybe they have a large board game collection? In any case, it is clear that for a friendship to form there has to be a certain click: a certain match for the perfect duo. Are you a match with your friends? In Duos, you can find out if you are on the same wavelength.

In Duos, by Granna, you and your fellow players are going to form duos with cards which is not very unexpectedly based on the title. On the table, 12 cards with pictures from a particular theme are laid out in a grid. Each player has their own screen and places behind it a board with a grid with holes identical to the cards. Each player then takes 4 pairs of cubes with each pair in a different colour (black, purple, yellow and white). Players can then start playing.

Each round, one player assumes the role of the narrator. This player secretly chooses four pairs of cards from the available 12 cards. The narrator places cubes behind his or her screen in the same places as the cards to indicate which cards on the table form a pair. The yellow cubes, purple cubes, etc. are thus used to designate a pair of cards each time. Each player then secretly starts choosing pairs too, hoping to make similar pairs as the narrator, because the more matching pairs the more points a player scores. Players therefore try to discover obvious connections between cards. The player with the most points at the end of the game wins. There is also a two-player variant in which players cooperatively try to make as many matches to pairs as possible. In this two-player variant, players have three actions each round for limited communication with each other.

Duos is (currently) available in two versions. These versions are stand-alone games, but you can basically combine these separate games. One version contains double-sided cards in the themes of sports and fairy tales (although there are games, mythology and even history in between) and the other version contains cards with animals and everyday items. The game personally reminds me of games like Codenames, Dixit and Cross Clues where players also try to ‘read’ and understand each other with limited hints. The various drawings are simple and therefore have a certain charm. The simplicity of the cards ensures that the cards are clear. This combined with the simple and fun gameplay makes the game well suited for younger players and families.