BONK (Buffalo Games / Oy Marektoy)
Though it’s been decades, the song from the Crossfire commercial still holds a corner in many of our brains. It was an awesome adrenaline-drenched hair metal song for an awesome adrenaline-drenched game. Now Crossfire is back for the generation that grew up with it, but updated for their modern design sensibilities.
Mastering the onomatopoeia titles, Bonk is a fun game from the makers of Klask. More than just a dexterity game, these games feel similar to the parlor games of our parent’s attics. Before they had us, it seems that they’d get together with their friends and have lots of fun, probably drinking and laughing late into the night. With our own games coming out, I see what you had to give up to have us. Sorry mom and dad.
Excitedly getting the game out of the box, my wife and I decided to try a two-player game. Unfortunately, the thing is, until you’re really good at Bonk a two-player game is really a game of whoever hits the wooden ball first. With a convex playing board, after being shot off of the middle starting perch the ball rolls towards whichever side it’s on. With only one person manning both shooters, it’s really hard to play defense. It was a bummer.
Bringing Bonk along to a party, we started a winner stays series with teams of two. The first game started out like our two-player games had with quick and uncontested scores, but literally, while I was apologizing for and trying to think of fixes for the game, suddenly everything clicked. We were firing metal balls down the slide and volleying back and forth! To put it simply, we got caught up in the Bonk.
I also forgot to mention that they suggest each point starts with everyone yelling “Bonk!” and high-fiving. It makes it so that people don’t hoard a bunch of balls in hand and also starts the game off with a group high-five. Sweet.