Target Review

Target is a game designed and published by Elevate Prep. It is for 2-6 players. In this game, players will be creating math equations with the cards in their hands, the first player that can make 5 equations will be declared the winner.

To begin, players decide on a difficulty level between beginner, intermediate and advanced. The level determines how many white cards must be used for each equation. The white cards are shuffled together. Each player is then dealt 5 cards. The remaining white cards are placed face down in the middle of the play area to create the draw pile. The black cards are then shuffled together and placed face down near the white cards in the middle of the play area. Once this is done the game is ready and play now begins.

The game is played in a series of rounds. Each round a black card is flipped over from the stack. Each player will then look at the cards in their hand and try to form an equation that equals the number on the black card. The player is allowed to use addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and parentheses to do this. Each player is only allowed to use each white card in their hand once in their equation. However they may use as many addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and/or parentheses as they would like. Once a player has formed their equation they will then shout, “TARGET!” causing the game to be paused. The player must then explain their equation and the other players will check to see if their equation is correct. If it is, they will win the black card on the table. They will then discard their white cards that they used to create the equation with and draw new cards from the draw pile to replace them with. If they are incorrect, the round continues but the incorrect player must wait 15 seconds before making another attempt at an equation. If all players are unable to create an equation then the black card is placed on the bottom of the pile and a new black card is placed face up.

Once an equation is proven correct, then a new round begins by drawing a new black card. The game continues until a player collects 5 black cards. The first player to do this is the winner.

The game consists of two decks of cards; one large stack of white cards and a smaller stack of black cards. The cards are very good quality and are easy to shuffle. They have a really nice feel to them thanks to the nice finish on each one. The white cards have large numbers on them written in red with a white background, as well as smaller numbers in opposing corners. The black cards are pretty much the same way except they have a black background and the numbers are in white. The number in the middle is also surrounded by 3 circles, almost like a bullseye from a target, hence the name of the game. The cards are very nice and I do like the way they look and feel. The one thing that I wish I had that wasn’t provided would be some tokens for the different symbols that are used to create the equations; addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, equal and parentheses symbols. I think this would have helped players to better visualize the actual equations a bit better. Maybe if each player had a small set of these, that would have been big improvement. As it is, the players have to explain the step by step process of their particular equation which slows things down a bit. Otherwise, I think the components are very good.

8 out of 10

The rulebook for the game is a large double sided sheet of folded paper. The rules are very easy to understand and only take a couple of minutes to read over. The rules contain a few pictures of the components. On the back side of the sheet, there are several pictures that show how the game is played by providing examples of different equations. The rules also contain two other ways to play the game; target blitz and target learn, more on these in the gameplay section. Overall I think the rulebook is well designed and looks good for what it is.
8 out of 10

While this is an education game at it’s core, it’s still a pretty fun game. Each round players try to quickly make equations from the cards in their hand that equal the face up black card. First one to do that gets the card. Pretty simple, but without any symbols to lay down as a visual aid, it can be a bit daunting for younger players. All that math has to be played out in their heads. The rulebooks suggests using a piece of paper and a pencil or pen to help. That’s fine, but then things seem a bit too much like homework for my kids. I suggest making your own cutouts for the different symbols and either giving each player a set or throwing them all in piles for the players to grab what they need. That’s one of the minor drawbacks from the game that I didn’t like, as noted in the components section of this review. I did like that there were a couple of other ways to play the game besides just the classic version of the game. There is target blitz and target learn. With target blitz, 9 black cards are laid out in a 3 x 3 grid. Players are able to make equations that equal any of the cards. The round ends once there are no more black cards remaining face up. Players can play as many rounds this way as they like, with the player holding the most black cards winning the game. With target learn, players do not compete to create an equation. Instead each player takes a turn trying to create an equation. If they are unable to create an equation, then the black card is placed on the bottom of the pile and a new card is drawn for the next player to try and create an equation with. The player with the most black cards after 3 rounds is the winner. It is suggested to set a time limit for players to be able to create an equation with in this version of the game. Target blitz is a lot of fun as players try to rush to get their equations faster than each other. I think this is my favorite way to play as it creates a lot of player interaction. Target learn is great for helping those younger players to not only learn the game but also learn math in a fun way. All 3 versions have their good points. Honestly I like this one. It’s simple to learn and easy to play. This is one that is a great teaching tool, especially for us homeschoolers. It’s great at teaching those simple mathematical equations in a fun way. I would highly recommend this one for anyone looking to help their kids that might be struggling with their math skills or for those parents like us that are homeschooling their kids and are looking to add a little more fun to their lessons.

8 out of 10

Target is a simple card game of mathematical equations that is great as a teaching tool and is a fun game as well. It doesn’t take a long time to play. Most game sessions last around 20 minutes or so based on the number of players and the version of the game being played. The components are just a couple decks of cards but the cards are great quality. I would have liked some punch out tokens or something of that nature for the different math symbols that weren’t included with the game. I think it would have made things a little easier, especially for the younger players. The rulebook is well done and looks great. It’s easy to read and doesn’t take long either. The game itself is fun. I like the various versions that are included with the game, especially the blitz version which can be highly competitive, especially as you get down to those last couple of cards. Each version has it’s own benefits and the game is great as a teaching tool and as a way of honing those math skills that might need a little touching up. It’s a great game for homeschoolers and anyone looking to help their kids become better at math. For these people, I would highly recommend the game. Overall this is one that we’ve enjoyed and will definitely be incorporating into our homeschooling curriculum.

8 out of 10

For more information about this game, please check out Elevate Prep at their site below.

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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