SNAP Review – Doomlings

Andrew and Anitra hold Doomlings

We’ve seen it in all the movies, eventually, the world is going to end.

That’s a pretty scary thought. But, if you ask the Doomlings, the end of the world might be pretty hilarious – and cute too!

This is a SNAP Review for Doomlings.


Doomlings is a card game for 2-6 players and a game lasts 20-45 minutes. It was designed by brothers Andrew and Justus Meyer and it’s published by Doomlings LLC.

Anyone can play, but they’ll need to be able to read to be strategic. We’ve got the base box here which notes that it is, in fact, a delightful card game about the end of the world.

Doomlings Trait cards


Not only was Justus Meyer one of the designers, he also did all of the illustrations. And they’re both adorable and funny. Every Trait card in the game has hilarious flavor text, and the picture of each Doomling does a great job encapsulating the idea of whatever that Trait is.

The art on the Catastrophe and Age cards works pretty hard to evoke their namesakes as well, but the Trait cards are really where the magic is in this game.

Doomlings Age cards and Catastrophe cards


All right Anitra, we’ve mentioned all of the card types in this game at this point. So how do we actually play Doomlings?

Well, there’s a little bit of set up: you shuffle the Age cards and deal three Ages into three piles each, nine cards. Then, shuffle the Catastrophe cards and deal one to each stack. Shuffle up each of these little tiny stacks independently and then stack them on top of each other. Put The Birth of Life on top of that deck. This is the story of your world!

Every player gets a Gene Pool card, which is a nice player aid to remind you of your hand limit. They place it with the “5” up, and takes five Traits from the deck. The player to the left of the dealer is the first start player.

The first player flips the first Age (which we all know is The Birth of Life) and then they go first! Each Age might have a lasting effect for the rest of the round, make sure to read it and follow it!

The game itself is very simple. Play a Trait, resolve its effects, and Stabilize at the end of the turn. Stabilizing means either drawing or discarding cards to get up or down to the number that is your Gene Pool.

Cards do all sorts of things. They might increase your Gene Pool, give extra points for certain colors, make sets, steal cards from other players, and more. But one thing you can be sure of, you’ll probably be laughing as you look through your cards.

When play gets back around to the first player, they’ll flip another Age card, do its effects, and keep going.

When the player flips a Catastrophe, it’s pretty much the same, but there are immediate effects for every player, and they’re almost always bad. The player to the left becomes the new first player, and you keep going. Ignore the World’s End effect unless it’s the third (and final) Catastrophe.

Catastrophe - Mega Tsunami

Speaking of the end of the world (as you do), if the player flips the third Catastrophe, the game immediately ends. Tally up points – including “World End” points – whoever has the most points wins!

And that’s the gist of the game. There’s some nuances in there, but you’ll figure it out. This game is just not that complicated.


So, Anitra, what did you expect from Doomlings?

I mean, it’s cute. I admit I was swayed a little bit by the ads I saw online, which were full of self-deprecating humor. I figured this would be a silly game and easy to learn.

Honestly, I really didn’t expect a lot from this game. It’s cute, like you said, it reminded me of Exploding Kittens, or Throw Throw Burrito, or something in that art style. I figured it would be a fun enough party game that we’d play a few times and be done with. Because I mean look, to be honest, the art is absolutely charming.

Doomlings Trait cards grouped by type


But I was actually surprised just how strategic this game could end up being. There is a small element of take-that in this game, and sometimes the restrictions from the Ages or Catastrophes can really put a damper on your strategy.

AND, it is tough to have diverse strategies in a game where you have, at most, twelve turns, playing one card per turn. So this is really a game that leans a bit on luck-of-the-draw, (a lot), but it’s lighthearted enough that hopefully, you can have fun even as you go down in flames.

I was surprised that the kids really seemed to enjoy Doomlings a lot. We were all laughing enough, that when the mean cards came out, they just didn’t seem to hurt that badly.

I wasn’t surprised that the kids enjoyed it so much. I was surprised that the adults did! Doomlings strikes just the right balance of silliness and light strategy. It should feel like everything is luck in this game, but it doesn’t. Unless you’re supremely UNlucky, there are always interesting decisions to make.

And the flavor text on the cards does keep me chuckling, every round.


Do we recommend Doomlings?

I can’t see why we wouldn’t recommend it! This is definitely the kind of casual game a non-board game family will lean into. Doomlings is a fantastic game to get on the table after a family meal, and it’s easy to teach even really while you play it.

Everything in Doomlings is funny and approachable, and even though pre-readers won’t be able to be strategic, they can still play Traits based on the adorable pictures and the numbers. (And the colors!)

Doomlings does a great job hitting that casual family sweet spot. So we’re going to give it 4 catastrophes out of 5.

And that’s Doomlings, in a SNAP!

Doomlings game

Find Doomlings on Amazon, direct from, or at your local game store.

The Family Gamers received a copy of Doomlings from Doomlings LLC 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?

Doomlings - family fun for the end of the world
  • Catastrophes


Age Range: 8+ (can play younger, but reading is required)
Number of Players: 2-6
Playtime: 20-45 minutes