1-4 players, Cooperative, Children’s Egg Hunting Extravaganza
Designer: Marie Fort, Wilfried Fort
Artwork: Gaelle Picard
Publisher: Blue Orange Games
Release Year: 2020
Overview of Gameplay
Bye Bye Mr. Fox is a super simple children’s board game that is geared towards working together to try and thwart sly Mr. Fox from stealing all the chicken eggs. To do this players will be taking turns performing two actions each, flipping over a token and placing it on the game board and then giving the board spinner a twirl to see what happens. Let’s dig into these actions a bit more shall we?
The whole idea of the game is to move three egg tokens to each of the three different hens on the board and once that happens everyone wins…..well….except Mr. Fox of course. There are a number of face down tokens you can pick from but there are only Hens, Mr. Fox and Eggs that you will flip. If you flip an Egg token you will place that in a “nest” spot around the center of the board. If you flip a Hen token then you can place that covering a fox icon or a different colored hen icon around the grassy part of the board. And finally if you flip a fox token then you would place that covering a hen space in the grassy area or replace a hen token that was placed earlier.
Now, doing all that strategic placing of tokens is paramount based on the next action, spinning the spinner! After you have your token placed, give that spinner a powerful twirl and where it stops shows how those placed eggs will be spent. The back end up the spinner will come to rest next to either a placed egg token or an empty spot, nothing will happen if the space is empty BUT if there is an egg token you will pluck it up and give it to whatever the OTHER end of the spinner is pointing at. This could be one of the three hens or that sly Mr. Fox! There are six different areas and the beginning board state has Mr. Fox inhabiting two of those areas with the hens having four so the odds are with you from the start, of course as tokens get drawn this will change. If you give the token to a hen it gets placed on the board under the wooden hen of that particular color. If to Mr. Fox then the egg gets dropped into a small slot on the edge of the board, forever devoured. If you ever get to the last token drawn and after it has been placed, the three hens don’t have three eggs each, everyone loses.
So, for a children’s game this one really does the components well! There are a handful of cardboard tokens that have a good thickness and feel to them and three wooden hens that are colored blue and have screen printed chickens on them. I mean I’m already impressed that they are screen printed and not simply stickers as some games tend to do. And that’s it as far as the components go, nothing else to keep track of in this one and easy setup/cleanup.
The board is awesome. It’s designed in such a way to actually sit in the box itself up on this built-in platform so that when the tokens are put into the little slot, they just fall inside the box in a little compartment. So, basically when you are playing the game you are also putting it away lol, a sly design feature if I do say so myself. On top of that this board is triple layered! The spots for the tokens fall nicely into that spaces making it so no bumps will dislodge them, which happens a lot when playing with children. That said, I wish the notches for the tokens had a tiny little spacer on each edge to make removing the tokens easier. Ran into a bit of an issue when my little one incorrectly placed a token and then couldn’t remove it.
Visual Appeal /Theme
Visually the game is fine, very obviously geared towards youngsters with the cartoon style artwork. The box has a nice spot uv finish so it is rather flashy and looks nice. The theme works well for children as well with Mr. Fox being the star here of course.
The rules consist of a single double-sided page to go over the actions. Extremely easy to pick up and learn with picture examples galore. There are also a couple variations to make the game a little bit more challenging by using less egg tokens in a game. No complaints with the rules as provided.
Player Interaction/Fun Factor
Now, this is a co-op game so you are all working together to find all these eggs. There will be some chatter between players on placement of the tokens as I have seen and this actually surprised me with the game. Even though there is quite a bit of luck with the spinner, placement of the tokens can be strategic based on which hens are needing eggs. Because of this I found myself teaching my five year old what to look out for and what may be a better placement of these tokens. A clever way to teach strategy at an early age! The game plays super-fast too. It says 10 minutes on the box but that can vary wildly depending on the age of the players obviously. That said, I would say 10 minutes is a nice average time for a single game.
Optimal Player Count/Replayability
I would say if you have the younger of the children playing such as five year olds, I would recommend keeping the player count to 3 or less. That way the turns don’t take so long to get back around to them to keep them engaged and entertained the entire time. Not that the turns are long by any means, just that a five year olds attention span is EXTREMELY short. Otherwise a full four player game runs very smoothly. You can also play the game solo using the exact same rules as the multiplayer game.
Replayability is ok, the tokens are randomized with every game so you never know what you are going to draw and the spinner of course is random. Just don’t expect any crazy variations to play style other than removing egg tokens to make the game more difficult. Then again this IS geared towards children.
Positive Final Thoughts
I like it! The components are by far my favorite part of the game with the interesting use of the board and box being clever to the extreme. The board itself is triple layered and already has the spinner built in so all you have to do it open the box and start playing. Very lovely production indeed!
Negative Final Thoughts
The only real negative I have on this one is that the tokens can be difficult for those without fingernails to pry out of their spots on the board.
The Bottom Line
Overall this is a really nice game with an outstanding production of components and board! The gameplay has a nice light strategic flair to it mix with some randomness to not only keep the game exciting for children, but also keep them thinking. I would say, if you have younger children from ages 5 to 8 then you can’t go wrong with this one! This game is getting The Fuzzy Llama Silver Seal of Distinction for a children’s title.
The Fuzzy Llama Silver Seal of Distinction for a children’s title.