We've heard of flying fish before, but this gives that a whole new meaning. Flying Sushi Kitchen is a new game from Redwood Ventures, makers of the popular Smooshy Mushy toys. Now, they've entered the game arena.
The object of the game is to complete a sushi order in an allotted time. Sounds relatively simple, right? Well, wait. This is FLYING sushi. To build your order, you have to snag the sushi out of the air. (The suhi pieces are really lightweight foam balls painted to look like sushi.) The game includes a battery operated base and bamboo shoots that you place on the base. When you turn on the fan, air goes up through the shoots, and the sushi pieces ride on that column of air.
On your turn, draw a card. Load up the bamboo shoots with the pieces you need, and turn on the fan. You have to grab the sushi pieces out of the air...using chopsticks...and place them on your sushi tray. For people who are not good with chopsticks, the set comes with a kid-friendly connector that allows you to turn the chopsticks into what are essentially a set of tongs. If you complete the order in time, you get paid the amount on the card, and the first player to get $25 wins. There are some variations in the play. The orders are comprised of different sushi pieces, so you'll have to identify them when you set up the round. When you start a regular order, you have 60 seconds to complete it. You might get a rush order, however, and then you'll only have 45 seconds. You might get a bonus if you can add ginger or wasabi to your order. Plus, you could get a tip, a challenge...or an all play when all players race to see who can grab the most sushi pieces.
Play continues as long as you want, and the player who has the most money wins.
When play is done, take the game apart and slide it back in the box. Unlike some of the other skill and action games out there right now, this requires patience, focus and some skill development. It's not just a game of chance. And for players who are up for the challenge, that's what makes this a real blast.
This is a lot of fun, but it takes a lot of skill and concentration. It takes a while to learn how to catch the sushi pieces just right, and younger kids may find that a little bit frustrating. However, with practice, you'll get the knack of it. We found that players who are adept at using chopsticks in eating sometimes found that the connectors helped in this game. Part of the fun, though, is figuring out your best strategy to get the sushi and improve your speed.
Make sure that all the bamboo shoots are securely attached to the base, and that they are firmly seated so they are straight. If not, the sushi balls will get blown off track.
The game comes with chopstick trainers for kids or adults who are not adept at using chopsticks. For the purposes of this game, this makes it a lot easier. For a more challenging game, remove them all.
As you go after the sushi balls, try not to block the air with the chopsticks, as that will cause the balls to fall. You can put them back on the air column, but you lose precious time. To put them back, hold about 6 inches about the top and allow the sushi ball to catch the air stream.
This game does take some skill and patience to do ti well, so we're guessing that especially with young kids who are just getting started there will be some house rules developed, such as credit for partial orders so kids don't get frustrated as they master it. You can always cut that out later.
We found that you can lift the balls with the chopsticks of out the air stream without necessarily grabbing them. We couldn't find a rule that says you can't do that, so that's now one of our house rules.
Play in a contained area because the sushi balls can go flying.
The fan unit requires four C batteries, which are not included.
4 C batteries required
from Stratus Games
from Educational Insights
from Blue Orange Games
Pac-Man Connect & Play
Word Slam Family
from Thames & Kosmos
from Winning Fingers
from Twisted Diction