SNAP Review – Anomia Pop Culture
“Female rapper… um..”
“Musical Movie… Fiddler on the Roof!”
“Rhianna… she wins.”
This is a SNAP review for Anomia Pop Culture – “Where Common Knowledge becomes Uncommonly Fun”.
Anomia supports 3-6 players – or even more if you use multiple decks – but we think it’s best at higher player counts. A game will take you about 20 minutes – but good luck playing it just one time!
So let’s talk about the art in Anomia.
The art in Anomia Pop Culture is exactly the same as the other Anomia games that came before it. Its very simple: there are multiple decks in the box, each with a different colored back. The fronts of the cards have a central symbol and large text that is readable in either direction.
Obviously the folks at Anomia Press have figured out what works for this style of game, and they’re sticking with it. Fair enough!
So, let’s talk about the mechanics. How do you play Anomia Pop Culture?
Well, you play it exactly the way you play all of the other Anomia games.
Shuffle the cards well and split the deck into two draw piles so every player can easily reach at least one of them.
Players grab the top card from a pile and quickly flip it out into their play pile in front of them. (Don’t look at them first, that’s cheating!) If the symbol on the revealed card does not match any other symbols around the table, nothing happens.
But if two symbols around the table do match, or they match through a wild card, it’s time for a face-off!
In a face-off, the two players with matching symbols each try to come up with something that fits the category on the OTHER player’s card. Whoever shouts it out first, wins the face-off and takes the loser’s card to put in their winnings.
(Like my Rhianna card.)
But wait! Taking that card may cause a cascade, where a newly-revealed card matches another card around the table. Quick! Can you come up with a word this time? (No…!)
After any possible face-offs have been resolved, the next player in turn order flips a card onto their play pile and the game continues.
There are also wild cards that may flip out; so rather than a player’s play pile, put those in a central area near the draw piles so everyone can see. You’ll cover up any previous wild cards, as well.
Wild cards display two different symbols that may now be considered to “match”, and may cause a new face-off.
When the draw piles are empty, the person with the most cards in their winning pile wins the game.
So Anitra, what did we expect from Anomia Pop Culture?
We have loved Anomia for years – even before we started reviewing games in 2015. So I was really excited to see a new version, although I was a little nervous about what “pop culture” might mean. I’m really not good with knowing pop musicians and actors.
We knew we wanted to play this game with at least some of our kids, too. We did expect there to be some difficulties with domain knowledge across generations.
“Mom, who’s ‘Prince’ ?”
So let’s talk about what surprised us in this game.
That domain knowledge thing was a problem, but we found a way to embrace it.
Normally, when you play Anomia, you cannot look things up. But with this game, when nobody knew an answer, it was just a rush to look it up on phones. It was fine, and it actually made it a lot funnier.
The speed-googling and “how can I search for this most efficiently?” One of the kids was talking to their phone – that’s not the fastest way, just so you know. No, it’s not.
It was also pretty eye opening to see just what our kids didn’t know.
What do you mean our daughter doesn’t know who Harrison Ford is?
“The Han Solo guy” worked.
It was definitely surprising that our biggest fear turned out to be an asset in the funniest way.
We recommend Anomia Pop Culture for families who already love Anomia and want more variety – and as a great way to pull in teenagers for a fun party game. Let me tell you, they know Youtubers and Billie Eilish, and I… don’t.
The box says 10 and up, but I think it’s probably best to stick with teenagers and adults for this game, unless you’re ready to modify the rules for younger players.
It’s also definitely best at five or more players – that gives enough variety around the table to get lots of face-offs – and lots of laughs.
I think I might prefer Anomia Party Edition because it has so many more cards, but I wouldn’t mind mixing some of the Pop Culture in for some really funny moments. That sounds good.
So, what are we going to rate this game?
We’re going to give Anomia Pop Culture Edition 3 ½ categories out of 5.
And that’s Anomia Pop Culture, in a SNAP!
The Family Gamers received a copy of Anomia Pop Culture from Anomia Press for this review.
This post contains affiliate links, which do not change your price, but help support The Family Gamers.
SNAP review music is Avalanche, provided courtesy of You Bred Raptors?
Anomia Pop Culture Edition
Age Range: 10+ (we say 13+)
Number of Players: 3-6 (best at 5+)
Playtime: 20 minutes or less