Frankensteins bodies is a game all about piecing together two new bodies in an attempt to impress the Baron Frankenstein. It's from Indie publisher YAY Games who have created and published a variety of games for all ages.
We first came across this publisher in 2017 at UK Games Expo, Andrew Harmon (founder and designer) was so energetic and welcoming that we were instantly intrigued by what he had to offer. We hopped straight into a game of Frankensteins bodies and came away with a signed copy for ourselves! Andrew is such a genuine chap who still remembers us when we bump into him at shows now!
To see a game out on display with cards depicting various detached body parts and an operating table was quite a sight to behold. At first glance, it appears to be quite a gruesome game with reasonable components and a rulebook which isn't too long. The cards themselves are of a good quality cardstock, however the boards are made out of thin cardboard rather than the robust boards that we are used to with bigger publishers. However, this surprisingly turned out to be a good choice as it made the game less bulky and didn't impact on gameplay at all.
Game Play Overview
In Frankensteins Bodies, players are surgeons trying to prove their prowess to Frankenstein by combining body parts from daily deliveries and the pit of discarded pieces to create the best and most complete body they can whilst also attempting to control infection. The game is played over a series of rounds and all players begin the game with 5 cards. Each round represents a day in the operating theatre and begins with a daily delivery of body parts and abilities. Each player gets 1 turn to take 2 cards and play 2 cards. The two cards taken can be either 2 from the top of the deck or 1 from the delivery and 1 from the deck. Body parts can be played onto one of your two bences to start building up your bodies, whilst action cards give a variety of abilities from improving the quality of your body parts to stealing parts from other players. Once all players have taken 2 and played 2, a new round begins. Play continues in this way until either 1 player has completed 2 bodies, or, the deck has been cycled through twice. At which point, the current round is completed and the game ends. Final scoring takes place, with bonuses for matching up the serum and gender of each body part as well as any surgeon bonuses granted from action cards. The player with the highest score is the winner.
Pros and Cons
This is a fun, quaint game but is certainly not for the feinthearted! The cards are quite graphic, as is the subject matter. The gameplay itself is relatively straightforward to pick up but the rulesbook will probably take you a couple of readthroughs/playthorughs to understand how everything works and how to create a good strategy! It was clear that a lot of thought had gone into this game from some of the smaller details included in the rules such as infection only being introduced if you took a body part from another players lab rather than switching between your own bodies. However it is also clear that this is a game from a small indie publisher due to the overall finish of the product.
Overall, I do really enjoy this game and for me, the final finish and component quality don't detract from the game itself. The gameplay is straightforward but has plenty of options for strategical thinking and tactics to come into play and is one of our go to games every halloween for that creepy gaming experience!
In conclusion, we would rate this game an 8/10
If this sounds like your sort of game, you can pick up a copy here: