SNAP Review – Clip Cut Parks

Clip Cut Parks
Clip Cut Parks

By now you’ve heard of roll and write. But how about roll and snip?

In Clip Cut Parks, you’ll design parks by cutting and combining pieces to get exactly what you need. In our SNAP review, you’ll hear Andrew rap about it.

Clip Cut Parks was designed by Shaun Graham and Scott Huntington, and is published by Renegade Game Studios.

Up to four players (ages 8+) will complete their parks by snipping off just the right pieces at just the right time. It takes about 30 minutes to play.

A die and a pile of tokens. To either side, a set of scissors, a sheet of paper with colorful squares, and two playing cards, each of which pictures a shape made up of 5-6 squares.
Setup for two players

How to Play

Clip Cut Parks is a little bit different from a classic “roll and write”. Every player takes a sheet, a pair of scissors, and five randomly-chosen cards. Flip two cards face up: these are your beginning parks. Each of these cards has a unique shape printed on it; some squares have colors or symbols on them you’ll need to match later.

One player rolls the die. This determines how many cuts you can make in your paper this round, and how long each cut must be. You must cut in straight lines, and you can’t cut the same spot twice in a round.

Making a single cut that is 4 squares long

Slowly work to cut pieces that cover your park outlines, while matching restrictions for color, wildlife, recycling, and “walking paths”.

Be careful not to cut off a piece that you can’t use – whether it’s the wrong color or too large: once it detaches from your sheet, you cannot cut it again, and must crumple it up as a penalty. You definitely don’t want to cut your sheet in half!

Once you’ve finished a park, set it aside and draw a new one from your unfinished parks. Don’t forget to take the completed park’s bonus! This may be a token that lets you ignore a restriction, or it may be a “bonus cut” you can make immediately.

The first player to finish all five of their parks is the winner!

Five completed park cards from Clip Cut Parks
Complete five parks to win!

Impressions

Clip Cut Parks certainly takes “roll and write” in a new direction. It requires a different kind of spatial reasoning than we’ve seen before.

Unfortunately, that spatial reasoning can also make it really frustrating, especially if you aren’t a huge fan of polyomino puzzles. It can be tough to visualize the shapes you want and translate that into how and where to cut.

Other games that involve blocking out spaces on a grid use the same spatial reasoning, but there’s something different about doing it with cuts instead of lines.

You’ll always be trying to balance cutting just the right combinations with cutting out pieces as quickly as possible… and not accidentally cutting off pieces you can’t use (the penalty/crumpled pieces hurt you if there’s a tie for completion).

This is a game that rewards your ability to think ahead even more than most roll and writes. Because you’re limited to a certain number of moves that have to be a certain length, it rewards people who can think ahead, investing in moves that will help them later.

Grand Parks

If you want more challenge, add one or two “Grand Parks” cards to everyone’s starting parks – these are more challenging layouts, and you’ll need to finish them first before moving on to the simpler parks.

Clip Cut Parks cards. Top row: Dew Point Park, Color Fields, Bombadil Green. Bottom row: Polyomino Park, Steinbeck Gardens, Windinwillows Park
Grand Parks (top) and Standard Parks (bottom)

A Race to the Finish

There’s no player interaction – you’re each working on your own set of park cards and have your own sheet to cut. We’re not sure how much of winning is luck of the draw, especially since we’re only focused on our own cards.

Although the box says 1-4 players, we think it could be played with slightly more, given the number of cards available. You’d need to provide more scissors (there are four provided in the box). This is not the kind of game that could be played with unlimited players, since everyone needs their own distinct set of cards from the central deck.

Solo Mode

Solo mode is a “race against the deck”. Starting with 20 cards, you’ll discard one every turn. See how many parks you can complete, with scoring rules for largest contiguous section, crumpled (unusable) pieces, etc. It’s a reasonably engaging puzzle, but nowhere near as much fun as playing in a group, all groaning about the cuts you need to make.

Art and Components

The art on the cards is clear, and clever park names make us chuckle. The squares on the cutting sheets are varied, but clear enough. The cut paper can slide around on the cards, but this isn’t usually an issue – although you’d never want to play this outside!

But cleaning up Clip Cut Parks was a pain. We are used to picking up tokens, cards, and more – but this game left tiny scraps of paper everywhere that were difficult to get a grip on. You’ll need a trash receptacle nearby (so it’s not great for an airplane or a restaurant).

We think Clip Cut Parks is novel, but it’s also a novelty. It’s fun to try once or twice, but only serious puzzlers will want to play it over and over again.

We rate Clip Cut Parks 3.5 park squares out of 5. Find it on Amazon, directly from Renegade, or ask for it at your local game store.

The Family Gamers received a copy of Clip Cut Parks from Renegade Game Studios for this review.

SNAP review music is Avalanche, provided courtesy of You Bred Raptors?

This post contains Amazon affiliate links, which do not change your price, but help support The Family Gamers.

Clip Cut Parks
  • Park Squares
3.5

Summary

Number of Players: 1-4 (we think up to 5)

Age Range: 8+

Playtime: 20-30 minutes

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