Title: Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance
Designed By: Ben Eisner and Steve Ellis
Art By: Brenda Hickey
Published By: Renegade Game Studios
Released: Coming 2021
Player Count: 3-6
Time to Play: 30 Minutes
If Rummy and Uno had an anime-loving baby it would be Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance. Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance is a fresh take on classic games, where players work to play sets of cards to get rid of their hand. Take on the role of a cute, little, animal office worker, who is just trying to make it through the day. Players create pairs, straights, flushes, and the ever-important Rainbow Bomb using the colors and numbers on their cards in order to try and finish their work on time and avoid needing to work late. Sometimes work just gets to be too much and players will "rage" and let out their inner heavy metal rock stars, in order to let out some of their pent-up feelings. What a way to get through work, right?
Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance is simple to learn and setup, and a whole lot of fun to play. Even for people unfamiliar with the cartoon Aggretsuko, the art and characters in the game are adorable and inviting.
Have each player take one Rage Token and flip it to the polite side in front of themselves.
Shuffle the deck and give each player 13 cards. (It might seem like a lot at first, but trust us, you will be glad for the options when you play!)
Place the deck off to the side (it will not be needed during rounds).
You are now ready to start.
How to determine the first player:
Whoever most recently had to stay late at work starts the game.
How to Play:
Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance is played over five days, each made up of multiple rounds. A day ends immediately when a player plays their last card.
To get started, the first player makes a play and puts their selected cards faceup in the center of the table. Plays consist of a variety of options, from sets of cards to five-card plays. If the lead player plays a set of cards (think a pair of threes), players must continue to play a set with the same number of cards, but a higher set. For example, the next player might play a pair of nines, and the player after that might play a pair of twelves. It is worth noting the cards above 10 do not have a color, they are only number cards. If a player cannot play a higher set (or chooses not to play), they must pass. You must play the exact same amount of cards as the lead player (meaning if they play a set of three cards, you must play a set of three as well, not a set of two or four).
At any point, a set can be beaten by a RAINBOW BOMB! A rainbow bomb is a straight of four cards that are four different colors. A rainbow bomb can only be beaten by a higher rainbow bomb.
Instead of a set, the other option is a five-card play. Five-card plays include things like straights, flushes, and full houses. A five-card play can be beaten by a better five-card play of the same type, for example, a straight of 1-5 could be beaten by a straight of 4-8. However, five-card plays can also be beaten by a higher-ranked five-card play. That same straight of 1-5 could be beaten by a flush.
Again, once a player cannot or chooses not to go, they pass. Once per day (not round) when a player passes they can choose to rage. When raging, flip your token from the polite side to the raged side and place it on a card that was played that round. At the end of the round, that player claims that card and adds it to their hand.
When all but one player has passed in a round, the round ends and a new round begins. The player who did not pass starts the new round.
Once one player runs out of cards, the round and the day end immediately. At that point, all players score their hands. Depending on the number of cards in your hand, each card is worth a certain amount of points. The more cards you have, the more each card is worth. Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance is like golf, the fewer points you have the better, so you want to have as few cards as possible.
Once scores are tallied, have any raged players flip their tokens back to the polite side. Shuffle all the cards back into the deck and deal 13 cards to every player again. The player with the highest score starts the next day.
After the end of day 5, whichever player has the lowest score wins.
Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance is a quick light game that breathes new life into familiar mechanics. We love the theme of getting out your rage by turning into a Rockstar in the middle of your workday. Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance has colorful, quirky, and fun card art with flavor text that will make you laugh.
We loved how easy it was to learn to play and to teach others. Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance went over really well with gateway gamers. They had no trouble learning how to play and kept wanting to play more games after we finished the first one. It has handy reference cards, making keeping track of what plays you can make nice and simple to remember. As more experienced gamers, it was great to find a game that we could enjoy along with our friends who are newer to gaming.
We enjoyed the rage mechanic a lot too. It adds a little bit of strategy and twist to the game. You can only rage when passing, so you can pass at a specific time in order to rage and get what you want or you can risk it and see if someone else claims what you were hoping for. We liked trying to figure out which cards were most useful to actually pick up and increase our hand size for.
We enjoyed trying to figure which card sets to put down and in what order. There is a good amount of thinking one can do if you really want to be technical, but you can also just play what makes you happy and still have a good time.
Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance will be released shortly. You can find out more and pre-order your copy of Aggretsuko: Work/ Rage Balance on Renegade Games' website.