Being a witch and brewing potions can be a lot of fun, but practicing powerful magic can also be very dangerous. It seems witches can only use so much power until everything blows up in their face.
2-5 players, age 14+
Playing time: 30 minutes
Designer: Erik Andersson Sundén
Artwork: Luis Francisco & Weberson Santiago
Publisher: Alderac Entertainment Group
In Whirling Witchcraft, players are witches brewing their best potions and passing ingredients to their right hand neighbour trying to make their workbench overflow. But they have to be careful because on their other side, another player is trying exactly the same for them.
Every round, each player chooses a recipe from the four cards in their hand, adjusting the arcana on the card when revealed, which will activate a special effect when reaching even numbers. Then the brewing starts and all players simultaneously produce ingredients by using their recipe cards in any desired order, taking ingredients from their workbench or the output from one of their previously brewed potions. When done, all players put their produced ingredients in the cauldron and pass it to the player on their right, who puts them on their workbench. The ingredients that don’t fit on the workbench will return to the brewer, who puts them in their witch’s circle as victory points. As soon as a player has 5 or more ingredients in their circle they win the game.
Whirling Witchcraft is a game about finding the right balance: you want to produce as many ingredients of certain types to make your opponent’s workbench overflow, but at the same time you have to make sure your own workbench is kept safe. Everything is open information, so keeping an eye on both of your neighbours is crucial.
The gameplay is really smooth with little to no downtime, easy enough to play with family yet the mini-engine building part, with more recipe cards in front of you as the game goes by, offers still enough interesting options for more experienced players too. Whirling Witchcraft has surprised me in a very positive way, as there’s definitely more going on than one would think at first sight!