Game Buzz: Hoop Godz

Today, I wanted to take a look at a game currently on Kickstarter called

image by BGG user BoardGameBrotha2

Hoop Godz is the latest game from designers Omari Akil and Hamu Dennis, to be published by their company Board Game Brothas. This is a follow-up to their game from earlier this year called Rap Godz, although the two games are quite different. Hoop Godz is for only two players, which makes sense given its theme – street basketball.

The game comes with a court board divided into hexes. This goes between the two players, with team boards at either end. Players start the game with 8 action cards, 6 dice, and a ball. Each player also gets a random GOAT card, 6 juice tokens for their available juice box, and 4 juice tokens for their yellow juice box. Players will then draft four Ballers to their team.

image by BGG user kalchio

The game starts with a tip-off. You put a player next to the ball and spread your other three around your side of the court. Each player gets a Rebound card which shows a specific combination of dice symbols you need to roll. The player who gets there first is the start player gets to do what it says on their Rebound card, and moves a juice token to their yellow box. The other player gets the tiebreaker.

On your turn, you can do any number of actions, but actions cost juice from the available juice box. When used, juice is placed on the juice bar, and only comes back when you rest or score.

Standard actions that can be taken are to move to an adjacent space, pass the ball to an opponent that you have a direct line of sight with, or boost an action to add a die to a die roll. There are also action cards, both active and response, that can be played. Active cards require juice, as well as a particular baller size that is needed. They have an effect, as well as a dice combination that is needed if your opponent plays a response card. If an active and response card are played, there’s a dice battle with players rolling in real time until one of them gets the correct symbols. The winner activate their effect.

If you win a dice battle with a dunk card, you score two points. If you win a dice battle with a shoot card, you roll the dice one more time to try to meet a condition and score a basket. In case of a missed basket, both players play their rebound card and have another dice battle. If you do score, you reset on the other side of the board.

At the end of the turn, you drop your juice from the juice bar to the box below (available, yellow, or red). Placing in the red box gets you a GOAT card, which are one-time use cards your opponent can’t play a response on. Then, you pass the active player to your opponent.

The game continues until someone has scored at least 7 points, or until 10 clock tokens have been used. The high score wins.

image by BGG user kalchio

I grew up on basketball. I mean, I’m originally from North Carolina, how could I not? And there aren’t a whole lot of great basketball games out there, so I’m glad this is coming out. I like how the ballers have different powers, and the juice system seems like an interesting way to manage how much you can do on a turn. There seems to be a lot of randomness because of the dice, but I think that having the real time element will help with mitigating that.

Overall, I think this looks like a really fun, if not necessarily extraordinarily deep, game. If you’re interested, the Kickstarter campaign for this and a second printing of Rap Godz runs until November 20 (and this is probably a good time to mention that this post was written purely out of my own interest, and was not sanctioned or commissioned by Board Game Brothas in any way).

That’ll do it for another post. Stay safe out there, and thanks for reading!

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