The idiom shoot for the stars is to set lofty targets and aim ambitiously high. The party game Shoot for the Stars sees players set lofty targets and aim ambitiously high with your answers to trivia questions. So we’ve established it is aptly named, but in this board game review we will find out how good it actually is!
I urge you to build the spaceship before you get the box from the shelf to play with friends. Learn from my mistake – you do not want to be watched while building this cardboard contraption! Building it is probably the trickiest thing about the game! Once that is constructed, allocate everyone a player colour and you are good to go.
In this game you will be asking the 2 to 8 players (realistically 4-8) a trivia question whereby the answer is a number. The first person starts the bidding with a number they think is realistic and becomes the captain of the ship. The other players around the table will then take it in turn to decide whether to increase the number and become the captain. Alternatively they can stay on the ship as a passenger, or jump off the ship because they think the captain’s answer is too high.
I guess you might have to be of a certain generation to remember the TV gameshow The Price is Right, but for those that do the answering condition is the same as that. As long as you say the correct answer or a number below, those on the spaceship will gain points, the Captain will get more. Any number higher than the actual answer and your mission into space is a disaster. In this instance the captain will lose points and players who abandoned ship will gain points.
If you know, or rather think you know the exact answer to the question you can choose to ‘Moonshot’. This high risk manoeuvre can pay off with extra points, but in the immortal words of another space captain, Han Solo, “don’t get cocky kid”.
After eight questions the game ends and players tally their point tokens. The person with the most, wins!
What it’s like
Play is quite quick as players have time to judge the previous answers during other players’ turns. Even at six or eight players this does not overstay its welcome. It’s quite entertaining seeing how guesses vary. In a recent play the answer rose from 1 million to 1 billion with only three players guessing.
I find the scoring a little fiddly for each of the different scenarios, win, lose, solo, moonshot. It is perfectly clear in the rule book, but I would have welcomed a little player aid for quick and easy reference.
It plays exactly how you think it would. Lots of oooos and ahhhhs when people say answers that you ultimately have no idea are right or wrong. There will also be giggles as answers pass ineptly under or ridiculously over the correct answer on the card.
Shoot for the Stars also works in the family environment with younger children. They are as unlikely as you are to know the answer! This is a trivia game for people without general knowledge. Perhaps that will annoy the more learned and serious pub quiz goer, but for me this is a great leveller to enable it to be inclusive.
Firstly, kudos once again to Big Potato Games for getting rid of all single use plastic. No shrink wrap on the outside and cards and components are in paper. Bravo Big Potato!
The rocket ship is great to look at on the table. It also does a good job of displaying the captain. It’s a shame the ‘feet’ need to be taken off for safe stowage but it isn’t going to much of a burden. The small board this sits on is fine, especially with the fun little planet illustrations. The card holder does a most excellent job of displaying the question and concealing the answers. I like how some cards have a QR code to scan to give you the correct answer at that moment which helps keep it current.
Finally, the artwork on the player cards is funky and cool. I really like the quirky characters that are traversing space. The astronaut meeples are also terrific, some might say out of this world! But you wouldn’t see me using cheap puns like that. The only thing I find is that with the pastel shades used it is a bit difficult to tell some of the colours apart. All in all though, everything in the box is pretty terrific.
What the kids thought
Max (8): it’s really good, I really like it because it’s fun to work out whether to stay on the ship or not, or if you want to be captain.
George (11): I like the questions because the answers are unexpected and I like that as a concept. It’s always really fun to play.
Harrison (14): I like the randomness of the questions and how shocking the answers are sometimes, both high and low! I like the theme of the game and the components are fun.
Final thoughts on Shoots for the Stars
This was the first game I played at UKGE 2021 and we all really liked it. That was before it was snapped up by Big Potato Games. I’m please to say the refinements and styling that presumably the publisher has added really work.
I do like trivia games where you don’t need to be a pub quiz champion to stand a chance of winning. It was the great success of Shot in the Dark and Herd Mentality. It means you can play with younger players and your dunderhead mates. Of course the key to winning is educated guessing, but in Shoot for the Stars, you still feel like you are in control and not hurtling into the cosmos out of control.
There is a good amount of cards included and they are double-sided so there is plenty of longevity too.
In terms of a party game, Shoot for the Stars is simple to pick up and play. You can pretty much teach it as you play and the only element that needs a bit of focus is the scoring. All in all I can see this being a hit party game especially with the festive season looming! Fortunately just like puppies, this party game isn’t just for Christmas!
Number of players: 2 to 8
Board Game Review Recommended Age: 8+
Publisher’s Recommended Age: 10+
Playing Time: 25 minutes
Setting Up and Take Down Time: 2 minute
Designers: Darrell Cannon
Publisher: Big Potato Games
Shoot for the Stars is a brilliant party trivia game that is quick and smooth to play. So quick that you will want to play the game again straight away! It will be my ‘go to’ game for quite some time in this genre. I think it is brilliant and if it sounds like your sort of thing, it won’t disappoint!
Artwork and Components
Value for Money
- Trivia questions you probably won’t know the answers to
- Quick to play
- Fantastic family fun
- Great player interaction
- Building the spaceship under pressure
- Unlikely to actually know the answers
- Component colours are a bit too similar
Need more games?
If you already own Shoot for the Stars and enjoy it, or are looking for other inspiration, you might also like these similar games:
- Herd Mentality
- Shot in the Dark
- 3 Wise Words
Buy Shoot for the Stars
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