Slapshot Review


Slapshot is a game by Tom Dalgliesh and Lance Gutteridge, published by Columbia Games. It is for 2-6 players. In this game, players will try to manage a hockey team of hilarious characters. They will trade and draft players as they try to make it to the playoffs. The player that is best able to do that will be declared the winner.

To begin, there are 3 types of cards: goalies, defensemen and forwards. These are separated into 3 piles. Each stack is shuffled and then each player draws cards enough to have a team of six. Each player must have one Goalie, two Defensemen and three Forwards. Players choose a colored token and place it on the Preseason part of the board. Play now begins.

On a player’s turn, he has 3 options of which he must do one: trade, draft or play a game. To Trade, the player chooses a manager and randomly chooses one of their cards. The player must then choose one of their cards of the same type to give back to the manager whom they just took a card from.

The next option is to Draft. To Draft, the player will choose a card from their hand and place it on the bottom of the corresponding deck. He will then draw a card from the top of the deck.

The last option is to play a game. In a Game, the player chooses a manger to play against. That manager’s team will be the Home team and will start with 1 goal. Both players arrange their teams however they want and place them face down on the table. Each player will then reveal the top card of their deck. The higher value card scores a goal unless the other card is a Goalie. Goalies block any other card except Tiny Tim from scoring. Also, if there are two goalies revealed, the higher goalie will score. This continues until all six cards have been played. The most goals wins and is able to move their token one space closer to the Playoffs on the board. If there is a tie, the players rearrange their teams and do it all over again with the stipulation that the first person to score a goal wins. One other thing about the player cards, there are some cards that have a Bruiser icon on them. If another card goes up against it, that card will be injured and removed from the player’s team deck after scoring including another Bruiser. After the game, injured players are exchanged for new players using the Drafting action. If the game is a tie, this happens before a sudden death match.
This all continues until one of the managers reaches the Playoff section. When that happens, that player’s team and the team that is in second place on the board play the best of 7 Playoff games. The team that is able to win 4 of these games will be declared the winner of the game.


This game has very minimal components. There is a nice looking game board that shows you were to place each deck of cards. This helps you to know which deck to pull from when you are drafting players. It’s made of thin cardboard but that’s not a big deal. It will still lay flat and be able to be played on really well. There are 6 brightly colored tokens that are used to keep track of scoring. These are sturdy plastic and look nice. Finally we have the cards. This is some of the funniest artwork that I’ve seen on a set of cards. It’s even better than Munchkin and I love the humor in those cards. The cards are sturdy and will handle lots of shuffling and playing. I have to say that the components of this are really great.
9 out of 10

The rulebook is really small, only 4 pages. The last page is simply a list of the character cards. There isn’t much in the way of pictures here but you really don’t need it. Everything is easy to understand and you shouldn’t have any trouble playing this game at all. There are a few variant rules included as well for when you want to try a more advanced game. Easy and fast to read, it won’t take 5 minutes and you’ll be ready to play. I like that.
9 out of 10

The game plays a little like an old fashioned game of war with the highest card winning. That’s not a bad thing. Over the years, I’ve enjoyed many quick games of war. This bumps that up to the next level though. The added options of drafting and trading as well as the bruiser icons change up the gameplay enough that the game doesn’t get stale. I love /hate the bruiser icons. When it’s my player getting injured, I hate it. When it’s someone else’s, I love it. That’s just another great part of the game. The game doesn’t take that long to play. It says 30-60 minutes but it’s really more like 20-30 once you understand the rules.
9 out of 10

Slapshot is a light card game of ice hockey loonery. The kids will enjoy this one as the art and player names will keep them laughing. It’s fun and quick. I really find myself enjoying this one alot. The different mechanics of drafting and trading have a real “take that” feel to them which I really like. As I said before the game has a nice war feel just without all the boring cards. This is one that old school players will enjoy almost as much as the kids will. I recommend giving this one a try. Just make sure your dental insurance is paid up first. Gotta watch out for those Bruisers. Great game.
9 out of 10



For more information about this and other great games, please check out Columbia Games at their site.

About Gaming Bits - Jonathan Nelson

I'm a happily married man with 2 wonderful kids. I love my family very much. I'm a big fan of board, card and RPG games and have been playing for over 20 years. As a board and card game reviewer, I'm hoping that this blog will inform, educate and entertain you. If you like it, please tell your friends and have them join in on the conversations. Thanks and GAME ON!!
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