If you don’t know of it, Horrible Histories is a series of books, movies, TV shows, plays, and other content, that take history and spin it into a funny and often somewhat gross way, to keep younger children interested in history. Many British children seem to really enjoy the way that Horrible Histories is presented, and Dann’s eldest son Kai is a really big fan of the books. Horrible Histories: The Board Game, challenges your historical knowledge in a race to the finish.
Horrible Histories: The Board Game is a two to four player game, aged at eight and up, designed for those who happen to love history. The board is split into four different colored sections, each of which corresponds with a colored book that’s about a different time in history. The green book follows the Victorians to the 20th century, the purple focuses on the Tutors to Georgians, the yellow goes from the Saxons through to the Middle Ages, and the red showcases the Stone Age through to the Romans.
You grab a mouse character (or a colored meeple if you don’t want to use the mice!) and start at the start point. On your turn, you are able to roll three dice all at once. Once you have your roll, you need to line up the dice — red first, then white, then blue. The first die shows how far you move. If you land on a character space, you then need to use all three numbers from the dice to find a question in the book of the same color as your space.
These questions come in a variety of ways, true and false questions, multiple choice, drawing challenges, mining challenges, and more. For our group, we had one dedicated book reader, as we felt that was more fair in our age groups, and when it was his turn, I took the book and read his question to him (so that he didn’t know the answer). If you pass the challenge on your turn, you can move an additional two spaces for free, which can really get you ahead of everyone else.
There is also a deck of cards on the table, which you can draw from if you land on specific spaces. These cards often tell you a funny reason why you’d need to move forward or backwards on the board, giving a bit of a reward or unwinding your steps, without having to know any history.
Horrible Histories: The Board Game has well over 600 questions, so there is a low chance of hitting the same question twice. The variety in the different categories are pretty interesting as well, and though we mainly got true or false, or multiple choice questions, we really enjoyed our time trying to figure things out. Each question has a bit of history behind the answer, which is interesting to read, and the whole game did feel like we were learning.
Though the board, and gameplay itself is quite simple in Horrible Histories: The Board Game, it’s really held up by its history and theme.
You can find Horrible Histories: The Board Game on WickedUncle.