Potato Pirates Review (ThinkFun)

Potato Pirates
What It Is

Can you save the Potato King in the new coding card game Potato Pirates? Battle other players to eliminate their Potato Crews and seize their Potato King cards. If you get all seven of the cards OR are the last player sailing, you win.

Each player starts with five potato cards, two ships, and 10 potato crew for each ship. Then you take turns drawing two cards from the deck and either programming attacks by placing Action and Control cards on anchored ships or flipping the ship over and executing an attack on an enemy ship. The Attack and Control cards are based on real coding concepts that you can read more about in the back of the instruction booklet. So while you're playing an If:Else card that allows you to fry three potatoes on ships with fewer than five potato crew or else mash two potatoes on ships with six or more potato crew, you're actually practicing the programming concepts of conditionals, algorithms, and Boolean Logic.

When you attack a ship and fry or mash potatoes, that number of potato crew gets eliminated. If a ship ends up with no potato crew, it has sunk and is removed from play. If a player loses both ships, that player is eliminated.

Of course, there are Surprise cards that can be played at any point, even when it's not your turn. Some of these allow you to deny an attack, hijack another ship, or steal cards from an enemy hand. 

The Potato King cards are what you're really trying to steal, and there are seven of those. If you draw or loot a Potato King card, you must reveal it to the group and say, "All Hail!" Then the other players respond "Potato King!" and salute you. The last player to do it must surrender two Potato Crew to you.

Is It Fun?

There are a lot of coding toys and games out there, but we think this game is one of the best we've seen in terms of explaining the relationship of game concepts to real-world programming concepts. And all through the play of a fun strategy game that the whole family can play! 

Don't let the idea of coding make you think this game is going to be hard to play. Though the instruction booklet does have 19 pages, you can easily get into the game with the Quick Start Guide, or read through the Full Rules to understand how each of the cards works. 

Who It’s For

Potato Pirates is for three to six players ages 7 and up.

What To Be Aware Of

The game includes 84 Potato Crew with Storage Bag, 16 Ship cards, 32 Action cards, 24 Control cards, 22 Surprise cards, seven Potato King cards, and instructions.

  • Fun

  • Repeat Play

  • Assembly & Instructions